Another funny week, with all kinds of up and downs. We had 3 crypto-banks going down, we had USDC depegged, and a lot of layoffs lately. Facebook and Instagram stopped their NFT support. What else? Read below:
- Bitcoin: Fidelity Crypto was opened without any marketing or extra noise, allowing millions of users to trade BTC and ETH commission-free on the platform. You need a Fidelity Brokerage account if you don't have one already. Bitcoin Ordinals are making the blockchain surge again and again. Bitcoin reached $26K this week and then dropped a bit.
- Ethereum: Shanghai Upgrade is a step closer, after the final test on Goerli, involving a simulation of staked ETH withdrawals. Once activated, on April 12 at epoch number 620,9536, this Shanghai-Capella upgrade will allow validators to withdraw their staked ETH and the rewards earned. Yet, there is a waiting period for unstacking, which can take even months. Optimism is scaling ETH once more, introducing the OP Stack, and building on and for the Ethereum blockchain. But the greatest piece of news is about the Arbitrum new token being airdropped on March 23. Check on https://arbitrum.foundation/ to see if your wallet is eligible.
- Altcoins: Elrond (EGLD) just launched a new improved app, and there are even some cool NFTs to receive from them if you are active there and do some tasks. USDC lost its peg to the dollar, once people found out that a part of the stablecoin reserves was at Silicone Valley Bank and Signature Bank, once they closed. Full protection for the depositors was ensured by the regulators, of course, so, no reason to panic but then, this is crypto. Even President Biden stepped in and announced that all customers who had cash deposits with the two banks are protected. Decentralized exchanges were frantic and recorded record-high trading volume once the USDC depegged. $2.2B in USDC tokens were burnt on Tuesday alone. BINANCE decided to convert $1B BUSD into BTC, ETH, and BNB, to make it stronger after they got some issues with Paxos, who stopped their BUSD-related activity. Optimism is analyzing the 10th Grants cycle finalists. Uniswap launches on BNB Chain, with Wormhole being the protocol's designated bridge. MakerDAO passes a proposal to raise US Treasury holdings to $1.25B (from the current $500M). A yield of 4.5% to 4.6% is expected after this strategy. Cardano seems to do well, growing in key areas such as dapp activity, NFT sales volume, and engaged stake.
- Blockchain games and NFTs: On , the Chaos Legion pack sale sold out, and the final legendary summoner, Lily Shieldpaw, was airdropped. Hopefully, they can finally focus on the Land feature next. It seems that soon you will be able to survey the land NFT, and harvest Grain/mine SPS, not sure how you do that yet. A season rental feature was also introduced with the new season. And, believe it or not, I got a land NFT on a Twitter contest. Can't wait to test it. Wombat Dungeon Master and it seems they worked hard to improve the game.
- Good news: Digital Currency Group (DCG) is looking for new banking partners after SBB, Signature Bank and Silvergate failed to live up to their expectations, and it seems that Santander, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, and BankProv are interested. Silicon Valley Bank customers have full access to their funds, but shareholders and unsecured debt partners will not be protected. SVB was the 16th largest bank in America.
- Bad news: Euler Finance was hacked, losing $197M in funds, according to Peckshield, and there is a $1M bounty on the hacker, as the funds were not returned in 24 hours. Binance stopped all the Earn deposits for UK and GBP (British pound) deposits and withdrawals are no longer supported on Binance from March 13 for new users, and May 22 for all users. It seems that DOJ is still investigating TerraUSD's collapse, following SEC civil fraud lawsuit. The US government still has an issue with Binance buying the assets of Voyager Digital for $1B, even if last week a judge approved the deal, despite the SEC arguing that the VGC token may be an unregistered security. Gary Gensler is talking sXXt as usual, thinking that Proof of Stake tokens are securities. The CGTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) disagrees with him, calling them commodities. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation denied reports that it would demand any potential buyer of Signature Bank to stop the crypto-related activities as a condition of sale. But they strongly suggested this thing. The crypto companies now try to avoid the US, due to SEC antagonizing crypto, looking for banking partners in Switzerland and Asia. The crypto trader Andrew Tate was denied bail again. Wait, how is this even related to crypto, most probably the guy is just a pimp laundering money and pretending it is from crypto. NatWest bank limited the customers' ability to buy crypto, up to ?1000 per day and ?5000 per month, quoting the danger of crypto scams. Truth be told, the crypto-investment scams increased from 4907M in 2021 to $2.57B in 2022, with more than 31K such crimes reported just in the US, with people aged 30 to 49 being the most common victims. Now, this is a good one, a Chinese businessman was charged with defrauding investors out of $1B, and Steve Bannon, ex-Trump advisor, was also arrested on Guo Wengui's yacht, charged with siphoning money from the 'We build the Wall' fund. European Central Bank seems to be in trouble, yet, they increased the base interest rate by 0.5%. If this would have happened in crypto, people would have asked for their money back. Another Bitcoin mixing service, ChipMixer, was closed down by law enforcement agencies from the US and Germany.
- Joke of the week: Facebook did not understand yet what is the Metaverse and how to do something in the virtual space. After the 13% workforce cut, another round of 10.000 layoffs is coming soon, and the NFT support for Facebook and Instagram dropped, less than a year after it was introduced. I think that this happen because they didn't make the money expected to be in the crypto universe, or they did not get the control that it was expected over the market. Another dinosaur, who will disappear into the history notes. Anchorage also cuts 20% of staff, Is another wave coming?
All the best, George
...have fun and win rewards on my favourite blockchain games (- Hearthstone-like card game) ( - GamiFI NFT platform) (Wombat Dungeon Master - NFT staking game) and (CryptoBrewmaster - Beer factory sim).
while writing on Publish0x blog, using search engine to maximize your income with tokens. Use instead of Twitter . I am also writing for crypto on Read.cash