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News/Coin360 Daily Dispatch | Crypto Market Updates & Highlights | July 18, 2023

Coin360 Daily Dispatch | Crypto Market Updates & Highlights | July 18, 2023

Jul 18 2023

12 months ago4 minutes read

Crypto Market Update

Written by Van

Table of Contents:

Monetary Policy and Currency

  • US Dollar Weakens Ahead of Anticipated Fed Rate Hike
  • Bitcoin Fights to Break $30,000 Amid Market Uncertainty

Crypto Companies and Market Trends

  • Bankrupt Celsius Settles with Series B Holders, Faces SEC Lawsuit
  • Binance Reduces Employee Benefits, Faces Regulatory Challenges
  • CoinFund Overreaches Fundraising Goal for Crypto-AI Startups
  • Compound's Ethereum Debt Surpasses $1 Billion
  • Arkham Intelligence's ARKM Token Soars, Raises Ethical Concerns
  • Reddit's MOON Token Gains Utility, Now on Ethereum
  • Telegram Raises $270M in Bonds, Durov Invests Personally

Blockchain Developments

  • Ethereum Locked in ETH 2.0 Reaches New High
  • Neon EVM Launches on Solana Mainnet
  • Chainlink's CCIP Launches on Multiple Blockchains
  • Axelar Launches Interchain Token Service for Cross-Chain Interoperability

Regulatory Updates and Legal Issues

  • Ripple and SEC Ordered to Propose Settlement Dates
  • Thodex Founder Sentenced, Accused of Investor Fraud
  • G20 Receives FSB Recommendations for Crypto Regulation
  • FCA Warns Crypto Memes May Violate Financial Promotion Rules

Traditional Banking and Cryptocurrency

  • Customers Bancorp Emerges as Key Player in Crypto Industry
  • Shinhan Bank Tests Stablecoin Remittance on Hedera Network

NFT News

  • Bitcoin Ordinal Inscriptions See Record High in July
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US Dollar Weakens Ahead of Anticipated Fed Rate Hike

The US dollar dropped to its lowest level in almost 15 months against a basket of major currencies, reflecting signs of weakness as inflation in the US cools. This comes ahead of the Federal Reserve's next meeting, where another 25 basis points hike is expected. The drop in inflation has raised expectations that this could be the last rate hike for this year.


Bitcoin Fights to Break $30,000 Amid Market Uncertainty

Bitcoin's price struggles to surpass $30,000 as traders liquidate bullish positions. Increased use of leverage has led to large liquidations and wild price swings. Factors like speculative trading, miners selling reserves, and low volatility contribute to the current market situation. On-chain metrics, profitability, rising unique addresses, and elevated BTC futures open interest provide insights. Regulatory uncertainty remains, but inflows into crypto funds hit a two-year high. 

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Bankrupt Celsius Settles with Series B Holders, Faces SEC Lawsuit

Bankrupt crypto lender Celsius has agreed to a settlement with Series B holders, distributing $25 million from the sale of crypto custodian GK8. The settlement allocates $24 million for legal expenses and $1 million to the holders. The agreement comes after a year of contentious litigation and is seen as a step towards confirming the company's emergence from bankruptcy. 

The court is urged to approve the settlement. The Securities and Exchange Commission has also filed a lawsuit against Celsius and its ex-CEO for fraudulent and unregistered sales of crypto assets.

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Binance Reduces Employee Benefits, Faces Regulatory Challenges

Global cryptocurrency exchange Binance has cut back on certain benefits for its employees, including reimbursement for mobile phones, fitness, and working from home. The company cited the "current market environment and regulatory climate" as reasons for the cost-cutting measures. 

This follows reports that Binance has let go of over 1,000 employees recently, and is facing lawsuits from US regulators. The exchange is considering scaling back further in response to business and regulatory concerns.


CoinFund Overreaches Fundraising Goal for Crypto-AI Startups

CoinFund has raised $158 million for a new early-stage crypto startup investment fund, exceeding their original goal of $125 million. The firm intends to focus on startups at the intersection of crypto and AI. CoinFund CEO Jake Brukhman mentioned that consumer-centric projects, such as NFTs, are currently experiencing a slowdown.


Compound's Ethereum Debt Surpasses $1 Billion

Compound's outstanding debt on Ethereum has surpassed $1 billion, marking the highest level in a year. This increase reflects a shift in the crypto market following the credit crisis of 2022, with lenders like BlockFi and Celsius declaring bankruptcy. The Compound protocol is a decentralized lending platform governed by COMP token holders. 

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Arkham Intelligence's ARKM Token Soars, Raises Ethical Concerns

Arkham Intelligence's ARKM token, initially sold for $0.05, is now trading at $0.75 with a $113 million market cap. It raised over $10 million in equity rounds, polarizing investors due to ethical concerns. Trading on Binance saw a 17-fold increase for pre-sale buyers, generating a volume of $70 million. The public sale on Binance reached its hard cap of $2.5 million. 


Reddit's MOON Token Gains Utility, Now on Ethereum

The Reddit r/CryptoCurrency community's token, MOON, has gained utility and is now stored exclusively on the Ethereum blockchain. With a market cap of $29 million, the token has been listed on two major exchanges and may be listed on Kraken. 

Active members of the Reddit community can now receive MOON tokens automatically every 28 days, and the platform has switched from Web2 to Web3, with a focus on verified virtual goods and NFTs.

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Telegram Raises $270M in Bonds, Durov Invests Personally

Telegram has issued $270 million in bonds to fund its growth until it becomes profitable, according to CEO Pavel Durov. The messaging platform is experiencing "massive growth," with 2.5 million new users being onboarded daily, and has 800 million monthly active users. 

Durov personally bought a quarter of the new bonds, investing tens of millions into Telegram's growth. The company's defunct efforts to launch its own crypto token, GRAM, have made it popular among cryptocurrency enthusiasts.


Ethereum Locked in ETH 2.0 Reaches New High

The amount of Ethereum locked in the ETH 2.0 deposit contract has reached a new peak of 25,937,766 ETH, signaling trust in the future of Ethereum. The number of nonzero wallets for ETH has also reached an all-time high, and gas usage on the network has seen a significant increase. The rise in fees is attributed to the popularity of meme coins.

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Neon EVM Launches on Solana Mainnet

Neon EVM has launched on the Solana mainnet, allowing Ethereum DApps to leverage Solana's infrastructure for transaction settlements. This integration offers an alternative to layer 2 solutions and could significantly reduce transaction costs for Ethereum DApps. Neon EVM's initial tests have shown promising results, and the launch has activated the Neon DAO.

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Chainlink's CCIP Launches on Multiple Blockchains

Chainlink's Cross-Chain Interoperability Protocol (CCIP) has launched on Avalanche, Ethereum, Optimism, and Polygon blockchains, with testnets to follow on July 20. The protocol allows developers to create cross-chain solutions and offers "Simplified Token Transfers". The price of Chainlink's native token, LINK, rose almost 10% to $7.30 at one point, following the announcement.


Axelar Launches Interchain Token Service for Cross-Chain Interoperability

Blockchain project Axelar has launched the Interchain Token Service (ITS) to improve the interoperability of ERC-20 tokens across Ethereum-compatible chains. Decentralized exchange SushiSwap is one of the first platforms to adopt the service. The ITS will enable seamless interaction of SUSHI tokens across multiple chains, enhancing cross-chain interoperability.

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Ripple and SEC Ordered to Propose Settlement Dates

Judge Netburn has ordered Ripple and the SEC to find three possible dates for a settlement conference in the Ripple v. SEC case. This follows a favorable ruling for Ripple, which found the company not guilty of violating federal securities law. However, the court decision also acknowledged Ripple's violation of securities law by selling XRP directly to individuals. SEC Chair Gary Gensler has hinted at a potential appeal against the ruling. 

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Thodex Founder Sentenced, Accused of Investor Fraud

Founder of Turkish crypto exchange Thodex, Faruk Fatih Özer, has been sentenced to seven months and 15 days in prison for failing to submit requested documents during his trial. Özer, who fled to Albania after Thodex shut down, is also accused of defrauding investors and is awaiting a hearing. A recent report by Divly shows that 99.5% of crypto investors did not pay taxes in 2022.


G20 Receives FSB Recommendations for Crypto Regulation

The G20 has welcomed recommendations from the Financial Stability Board (FSB) on regulating crypto assets and global stablecoins. The FSB called for tougher rules on safeguarding clients' assets and avoiding conflicts of interest. 

The G20 presidency, currently held by India, presented a note on crypto during discussions at the recent Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting. It is unclear whether the G20 will adopt the FSB's recommendations as global regulations for cryptocurrencies.


FCA Warns Crypto Memes May Violate Financial Promotion Rules

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has warned that crypto memes that breach financial promotion rules could lead to criminal offenses, with potential fines and imprisonment. The FCA proposed new guidelines that included a section on non-compliant crypto memes that are considered financial promotions. 

The agency highlighted that many people are unaware that memes can be subject to its compliance rules. The updated rules may have implications for meme coin projects that heavily rely on associated memes. The FCA also proposed guidance for social media financial influencers, or "finfluencers," who may unknowingly make financial promotions.


Customers Bancorp Emerges as Key Player in Crypto Industry

Customers Bancorp Inc. has become a key player in the cryptocurrency industry, partnering with digital asset firms and providing dollar transactions for crypto businesses. The bank, despite being relatively small, is attracting clients due to its stability and regulatory compliance measures. However, the industry still faces challenges in finding traditional banks that support crypto players.


Shinhan Bank Tests Stablecoin Remittance on Hedera Network

South Korea's Shinhan Bank has completed a feasibility test for stablecoin remittance payments on the Hedera network, aiming to address cross-border payment issues such as high fees and lengthy settlement times. The project involved other financial institutions and is compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). 

Byunghee Kim, who leads blockchain at Shinhan Bank, stated that stablecoins offer a low-cost and reliable method for transferring value across borders, increasing financial inclusion. The successful completion of the pilot is seen as an important step in making cross-border payments faster and more accessible.

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Top Altcoin Gainers and Losers

Gainers:

Sui SUI (+5.53%)

Toncoin TON (+4.55%)

Chainlink LINK (+4.51%)

Losers:

1inch 1INCH (-15.37%)

Kaspa KAS (-7.87%)

Solana SOL (-5.82%)


NFT Market Map

NFT heatmap

Bitcoin Ordinal Inscriptions See Record High in July

Bitcoin Ordinal inscriptions volume has seen a significant rise in July, with nearly 3.6 million inscriptions so far, bringing the total to almost 18 million. Daily spikes were observed on July 8-9 and July 16, with the July 8 inscriptions reaching a record high of 350,524. The Ordinals protocol, which allows users to embed data into the Bitcoin blockchain, has seen $55.4 million in fees paid to date. NFTs minted on the Bitcoin network recorded sales worth $121 million in the past 30 days.

This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.

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