Crypto Daily News from ZBG Exchange

1. Market Wrap: Bitcoin Slips Below $48K as Focus Shifts to Regulation

Bitcoin is in pullback mode as China and the SEC have traders’ attention.

Bitcoin (BTC, -0.60%) slipped below $48,000 on Tuesday as traders monitor the latest batch of regulatory developments. The cryptocurrency was trading around $47,000 at press time, down about 2% over the past 24 hours.

China’s central bank reiterated its concerns about cryptocurrencies on Tuesday, weighing on investor sentiment. The central bank highlighted perceived risks involved in crypto trading, a major reason for the country’s crackdown this year on exchanges.

In the U.S., analysts are waiting for the Securities and Exchange Commission to decide when and whether to approve a bitcoin-focused exchange-traded fund (ETF). “The fact that agency officials are sending signals about how they’re approaching these applications says something,” .

For decentralized finance (DeFi), however, “the SEC seems to be building precedents for more enforcement actions in this part of the crypto world,” De wrote.

Also on Tuesday, the parent company of stablecoin issuer Tether and crypto exchange Bitfinex, petitioned the New York Supreme Court to block the state’s attorney general from releasing documents to us. The documents would detail the composition of Tether’s reserves over the past few years.

Latest Prices

Bitcoin (BTC) $47,262, -2.7%

Ether (ETH) $3,419, +2.2%

S&P 500: -0.1%

Gold: $1,817, +0.3%

10-year Treasury yield 1.305%, +0.025 percentage point

For now, some analysts see additional short-term consolidation in bitcoin, albeit above the 50-day moving average support level around $40,000.

“Once initial resistance is cleared, which we expect beyond the very near term, targeted resistance would become the all-time high near $69K-$70K,” wrote Katie Stockton, managing partner at Fairlead Strategies, in a Monday newsletter.

2. The Postal Service’s Law Enforcement Arm Is Buckling Down on Crypto

A newly released USPIS internal audit recommends a crypto training program for investigators.

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the law enforcement arm of the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), is re-thinking the way it handles crypto-related investigations.

According to an internal audit report published last Thursday, the agency said its management of seized cryptocurrency assets and crypto-related investigative procedures need to be improved.

The audit was led by Mary Lloyd, the agency’s cybersecurity and technology expert. It found a “lack of standardized [cryptocurrency] training” for postal inspectors and inconsistent communication between inspectors and the Cryptocurrency Fund Program, a body created in 2017 to serve as the custodian for the postal service’s crypto wallet and to generally oversee its crypto operations.

Additionally, accounting software used by USPIS to track transfers of cryptocurrencies during investigations was found to have “data integrity issues,” including duplicate transactions, that resulted in inaccurate records.

Postal inspectors investigate crimes involving the mail, often working with other law enforcement agencies like the FBI and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), to catch criminals who use the mail to transport drugs and other illegal substances.

Because cryptocurrency provides a layer of pseudonymity for illegal online transactions, often through dark web marketplaces, the USPIS and other law enforcement agencies have had to develop undercover crypto investigation procedures. Some of those methods have succeeded more than others.

Lloyd’s report said that USPIS should develop a “comprehensive cryptocurrency training program” for its inspectors, “develop written procedures for the management and oversight of the national wallet,” fix the accounting system and improve communication between inspectors and the Cryptocurrency Fund Program.

The audit, which was announced in March, was self-directed. It was the first time the USPS has formally examined the topic of cryptocurrencies, according to a report from Nextgov, a publication that covers technology issues in the government.

The report also revealed the relatively small scope of the USPIS’s crypto investigations: In 2019 and 2020, the Cryptocurrency Fund Program received only nine requests for crypto for investigative purposes, and the postal inspectors seized crypto assets in only four cases.

3. Inside Arbitrum’s Staggered Mainnet Launch

Despite community anticipation, Arbitrum’s “beta mainnet” may take time to develop.

As gas costs soar on Ethereum and non-fungible token (NFT) drops routinely burn thousands of ETH, yield farmers and traders have been eagerly anticipating the arrival of Arbitrum’s “rollup” technology.

Despite the pent-up demand, however, signs are pointing to the layer 2′s launch being more of a process rather than an event.

In an interview with CoinDesk, Offchain Labs co-founder Steven Goldfelder emphasized that while the launch is a step in the right direction, there’s plenty more work to do before the network can handle a significant portion of Ethereum’s transaction load.

“We’re very excited, very humbled by the support we’ve gotten,” said Goldfelder. “Today’s the day we can finally provide scaling for the Ethereum user. But as exciting as that is, we’re rolling up our sleeves because there’s still work to be done. It’s still a mainnet beta, and there’s still steps to take to full decentralization.”

4. United Talent Agency Signs CryptoPunks

The agency will represent the NFT project for appearances in film, TV, video games and publishing.

Could CryptoPunks be coming to the big screen?

Some of the most recognizable faces of the non-fungible token (NFT) industry signed with United Talent Agency (UTA) for representation across film, TV, video games, publishing and licensing, the Hollywood Reporter reported today. The high-powered entertainment agency will also represent Meebits and Autoglyphs, two other NFT projects created by Larva Labs.

CryptoPunks could be the first NFT to break into more traditional forms of media, which Larva Labs co-founder Matt Hall told the Hollywood Reporter would be “for the benefit of the entire community connected to our projects.”

Licensing rights have been a controversial topic in the NFT sector because they are often seen as antithetical to its decentralized and permissionless nature. Larva Labs has been aggressive in enforcing its intellectual property rights as it has issued claims under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which bans copying and selling or freely distributing copyrighted digital content and works.

The news about CryptoPunks stirred a strong reaction among some observers of NFTs. “The punk community has told the story of punks, and that emergent, organic and AUTHENTIC story telling is the ONLY reason punks are what they are,” tweeted Scott Lewis, the co-founder of data company DeFi Pulse. “I’m skeptical Hollywood agents, however talented, can license the imagery authentically without deep engagement w the punk community.”

5. NFT Powerhouse Dapper Labs Hires Former Ticketmaster and PayPal Alumni

Gui Karyo joins from Ticketmaster while Amanda Schwartz hails from PayPal.

The Non-fungible token firm behind CryptoKitties and NBA Top Shot has brought on two new first-rate hires to add to its growing team.

Dapper Labs has tapped former Ticketmaster CIO Gui Karyo to lead the firm’s technical operations as CIO while former PayPal alumn Amanda Schwartz joins as vice-president of business operations and strategy.

In his role at the U.S. ticket sales and distribution company, Karyo was responsible for leading the company’s technology and engineering organization. Before his time at Ticketmaster, Karyo performed an 8-month stint at iconic video game brand Atari fleshing out its online/mobile product portfolio, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Karyo is tasked with scaling both the infrastructure and technical operations at Dapper Labs.

Meanwhile, Schwartz brings valuable experience to the firm having worked at PayPal for almost ten years in multiple roles including chief of staff, and director of strategy and business operations, among others.

As Dapper Labs’ new hire, Schwartz is responsible for scaling the operations of the company through various growth strategies.

While at PayPal, she helped support PayPal’s Blockchain, Crypto, and Digital Currencies business units.

Founded in July 2018, ZBG is a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange, a global platform of ZB.COM.

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ZBG Team

September 1, 2021

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