This week saw several significant developments in the cryptocurrency market, marked by the growing adoption of digital assets and increasing optimism surrounding the launch of a spot bitcoin (BTC) ETF.
There were also some potentially good developments for crypto enthusiasts: For one, the SEC has come under fire from Senator Cynthia Lummis over its new policy, while Binance has launched a self-custody crypto wallet.
Here’s a list of this week’s major crypto stories.
Senator Hits Against SEC’s New Policy
Senator Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.) has voiced opposition to the SEC and vowed to block the agency’s “Staff Accounting Bulletin 121” policy, which requires financial firms holding customers’ crypto assets to include them on their balance sheets. “I think the SEC is overreaching,” she said
Sen. Lummis: SEC is ‘overreaching’ on crypto (Yahoo! Finance)
Hong Kong Considers Spot ETFs for Retail
Hong Kong is considering allowing retail investors to participate in spot cryptocurrency ETFs if regulatory concerns are met, the Securities and Futures Commission said. The move comes as the city-state steps up efforts to create an Asia-Pacific digital asset hub while tackling the fallout of the JPEX scandal.
Hong Kong Mulls Allowing Spot Crypto ETFs in Pursuit of Asia Hub (Bloomberg)
Third Largest Bank in Germany Launches Custody Platform
DZ Bank, the third largest bank in Germany by asset size, has launched its own digital assets custody platform built on the blockchain. “We assume that within the next ten years, a significant proportion of capital market business will be processed via distributed ledger technology (DLT)-based infrastructures,” Holger Meffert, head of securities services and digital custody at DZ, said.
Germany’s Third-Largest Bank Unveils Blockchain-Based Digital Custody Platform for Institutional Investors (Cryptonews.com)
Sixth Week of Consecutive Inflows in Digital Asset Funds
Digital asset investment products saw inflows totaling $261 million, representing the sixth week of consecutive inflows that now total $767 million, surpassing the total inflows of $736 million seen in 2022. Ethereum (ETH) saw the largest inflows since August 2022, totaling $17.5 million.
Crypto funds hit $767 million six-week streak, ether sees largest inflows since August 2022 (The Block)
South Korean Telecom Giant Partners With Aptos to Enhance Web3 Wallet Service
SK Telecom, South Korea’s largest mobile operator, announced that it has signed a three-party agreement with Aptos and Atomrigs Lab to provide a seamless and secure Web3 experience for users.
SK Telcom to launch Web3 wallet with Aptos and Atomrigs Lab (CoinTelegraph)
SK telecom signed a tripartite agreement with #Aptos, a rapidly-emerging and scaling layer 1 mainnet, and Atomrigs Lab, SK telecom’s technology partner. Through the collaboration with Aptos, SK telecom is committed to delivering a seamless and secure Web3 experience for users. pic.twitter.com/Ga9qoZz84W
— SK telecom (@SKtelecom) November 7, 2023
Coinbase Blocked in Kazakhstan
Coinbase, the world’s second-largest crypto exchange by trading volume, has been blocked in Kazakhstan for violating crypto laws that came into effect earlier this year. The Digital Assets law prohibits issuing and circulating “unsecured digital assets” along with digital asset exchanges that offer these assets outside of the Astana International Financial Center.
Coinbase Blocked in Kazakhstan for Breaking New Digital Assets Law: Report (CoinDesk)
Attendees in BAYC’s Event Experience Eye and Skin Burn
More than a dozen people who attended Bored Ape Yacht Club’s three-day event in Hong Kong, known as ApeFest, said they experienced eye pain and skin burn. The Web3 company has claimed UV-A emitting lights were likely behind the injuries.
Bored Ape NFT Partygoers Blame UV Lights For Burned Eyes And Skin (Kotaku)
Stark Warning: Blackrock ETF May Kill Bitcoin if it Becomes Too Big
BitMEX founder Arthur Hayes said that if the BlackRock ETF becomes too big, it may actually kill Bitcoin. He noted that BlackRock and others are state agents, and Bitcoin is the antithesis of a centralized currency. He also warned that these entities could increase their control over the Bitcoin network by holding mining machines.
Institutional custody of bitcoin could kill it, cautions Hayes (Blockworks)
Circle Eyes 2024 IPO
USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin issuer Circle is considering a 2024 IPO, with backers including Goldman Sachs, General Catalyst, and BlackRock. Circle planned to go public via a SPAC merger in 2022 at a valuation of $9 billion but failed.
Stablecoin Issuer Circle Internet Considering 2024 IPO (Bloomberg)
Binance Launches Web3 Wallet
Binance has announced the official launch of its Web3 wallet that can be used to interact with the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem. The wallet uses MPC technology, so no private key or mnemonic phrase is required.
Binance to Offer Web3 Wallet With DeFi Access (Unchained Crypto)
SEC Has a Window to Approve 12 ETF Applications
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has a small window starting tomorrow to potentially approve 12 pending BTC ETF applications, including the BlackRock iShares Spot Bitcoin ETF and the conversion of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust.
2-week Window Opens for Potential Approval of Bitcoin Spot ETFs, Including BlackRock’s Application (Yahoo! Finance)
Celsius Network Cleared to Exit Bankruptcy
Failed crypto lender Celsius Network won bankruptcy court approval of its plan to transform into a creditor-owned bitcoin mining firm as part of a broader proposal to repay customers whose accounts have been frozen for more than a year.
Crypto lender Celsius Network cleared to exit bankruptcy (Reuters)
This week was characterized mainly by positive news in the crypto space, highlighted by more large institutions showing tentative support for cryptocurrencies.
The launch of Binance’s Web3 wallet and the growing adoption of digital assets by traditional finance (TradFi) firms continue to attract new people to the industry.
But naturally, the fight for rational regulations continues to make headlines.