Crypto News Headlines (03-Feb-2022)

Crypto News Headlines (03-Feb-2022)

Bitcoin (BTC) and the broader crypto market faced heavier selling pressure in late U.S. trading hours on Wednesday, ending the oldest cryptocurrency’s two-day winning streak.

The late afternoon price drop in crypto came after Meta Platforms (formerly Facebook) delivered disappointing Q4 earnings with weak guidance for the current quarter. Meta shares dropped by more than 18% in extended trading on Wednesday.

At the time of publication, the largest cryptocurrency by market value is changing hands at $37,031, down 4.5% in the past 24 hours, according to CoinDesk data. Ether, the second-biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, was trading at $2,690, off 3.8% for the same period.

According to data compiled by CoinDesk, bitcoin’s trading volume across major centralized exchanges on Wednesday continued to drop.

The anonymous crypto artist Pak is teaming up with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange for a collaborative NFT project titled “Censored,” to be released on February 7.

The date has particular significance for Assange, as it is the deadline for his lawyers to ask the U.K. Supreme High Court to reconsider the extradition case that the U.S. government has filed again him.

The two-part sale at a yet-to-be-determined venue will include a single-edition NFT and a “dynamic” open-edition NFT, reports the Crypto Times.

More hints and details about Pak’s project with Assange are expected in the coming days. Reached by Artnet News, Pak declined to offer further comment.

Bitcoin (BTC) is the original cryptocurrency, and at the ripe old age of 13 it’s still the most expensive crypto on earth. A single Bitcoin will set you back $38,000 at the time of writing. There’s no doubt that 2021 was the year Bitcoin went mainstream with a world government making it legal tender (El Salvador) and Tesla flirting with it as payment.

Last year saw Bitcoin hit all-time highs of $67,000 in November as crypto analysts made wild predictions about the coin surpassing $100,000 in 2022. So, how’s that coming along? Bitcoin started the year at $47,000 valuation and by the end of January has fallen to $32,000 – its lowest price in six months. Bitcoin’s market cap in the cryptocurrency industry has also hovered around the 40% mark. For context: Bitcoin started 2021 with as high as 70% market capitalisation.

The uncertainty has the same analysts from the Independent who predicted Bitcoin’s triumph to claw back their predictions from $100,000 per coin to highs of $93,717. Guido Buehler, chief executive of Swiss digital asset bank Seba, gave more modest internal predictions for Bitcoin of between $50,000-$75,000. JP Morgan also lowered its earlier long-term price target of $150,000 for Bitcoin, slashing it down to $38,000.

No one is saying that Bitcoin will lose its pole position – but neither are they saying to pour your life savings into crypto’s firstborn coin. For those looking to diversify their portfolio with other potential crypto gainers, let’s also look at some price predictions for popular cryptocurrencies with the potential to exceed Bitcoin over the remaining 11 months of 2022.

The Ascent named KuCoin the best cryptocurrency app 2022 for enthusiasts. The award recognizes the efforts made by the crypto exchange in establishing competitive fees, maintaining robust security and transparency, and understanding its customer rules.

Along with KuCoin, other top crypto exchanges, such as Gemini, Coinbase, Binance.US,, Uniswap, and FTX were also listed.

The Ascent is a personal finance service by The Motley Fool that rates and reviews essential products for everyday money matters. With The Ascent, The Motley Fool brings over 28 years of financial expertise, trusted guidance, and unbiased analysis to the world of daily personal finance decisions. The Ascent has selected Best-Of Awards since 2020, the Best-Of 2022 Awards winners were chosen across seven major categories, including credit cards, banking, stockbrokers, cryptocurrency exchanges and apps, mortgage lenders, car insurance, and personal loans. The companies that represent the top pick for most people, according to The Ascent experts, were selected as the winners. Among them are such known companies as Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Chase, and American Express.

The Ascent, a Motley Fool service, uses a transparent rating methodology to determine the best crypto exchanges. Service, competitive fees, cryptocurrency selection, security and transparency, and knowing customer rules are among the factors considered by its team of experts. Once all these are looked at, winners are determined by vote to ensure objectivity and fairness. The service experts also consider the Golden Rule Check: can we recommend this exchange to a family or friend?

The Ascent’s award echoes KuCoin’s significant growth in user base and volume in recent years, with the latest stats indicating that the global crypto exchange had 10 million users by December 2021, in over 207 countries. Last year KuCoin’s cumulative trading volume exceeded $1 trillion (Spot & Futures trading), and the average daily trading volume reached $3 billion. On major crypto ranking sites like CoinMarketCap and Coingecko, KuCoin stands as a top five crypto exchange.

Bank deposits by South Korean individuals to trade on the country’s four major digital coin exchanges fell 17.1% to 7.63 trillion won ($6.33 billion) as of the end of 2021 against three months ago when the country toughened regulations on real-name crypto currency and trade. The reduction is due largely to soured investor sentiment on risky assets and profit taking after the price of bitcoin surpassed its new high of 82,700,000 won on Nov. 9 amid growing uncertainties from the Omicron wave and the U.S. Fed’s hint of tightening.

The Indian government said it doesn’t treat trading in crypto assets as illegal, a day after it announced taxing such transactions just the same as winnings from gambling.

“They are in a grey area. It’s not illegal to buy and sell crypto,” Finance Secretary T V Somanathan said in an interview to Bloomberg Television. “We have now put in a taxation framework that treats crypto assets the same way we treat winnings from horse races, or from bets and other speculative transactions.”

After years of dilly-dallying on how to treat cryptocurrencies, the government’s budget Tuesday proposed taxing income from the transfer of virtual assets at 30% — effectively removing any uncertainty about the legal status of such transactions.

The steep tax rate on crypto could dissuade trades that have been soaring in India despite the central bank’s warnings about the risks of money laundering, terrorist financing and price volatility. The government is working on a legislation to regulate cryptocurrencies and the proposed law will have to be cleared by India’s Cabinet before before being taken to lawmakers.

South Africa’s financial regulator said traders should be “cautious and vigilant” when using FTX Trading, one of the world’s fastest-growing crypto exchanges.

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority on Wednesday issued two notices warning against dealing with Bahamas-headquartered FTX and Seychelles-based ByBit. It said the companies are not authorised to give financial advice or intermediary services in South Africa.

ByBit has been offering South Africans access to its online platform to trade in derivative instruments and FTX might be doing the same, the regulator said in a statement. For FTX to offer contracts for difference or CFD trading in South Africa, “it must be licensed to do so by the regulator,” the FSCA said.

FTX didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from Bloomberg. ByBit said it will provide a response shortly.

The warnings come as South Africa scrambles to introduce new regulations for the crypto industry following two of the world’s largest fraud cases that originated from the country, with billions of dollars worth of Bitcoin allegedly lost. The proposed rules this year will give guidelines on how South Africans can interact with crypto exchanges.

(Reuters) -Hackers have stolen cryptocurrency worth more than $320 million from a decentralised finance platform, the fourth-largest crypto heist on record and the latest to shake the fast-growing DeFi sector.

Wormhole, a site that allows the transfer of information from one crypto network to another, said on Twitter on Wednesday that it was “exploited” for 120,000 units of a version of the second-largest cryptocurrency, ether.

Wormhole did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

London-based blockchain analysis firm Elliptic said that attackers were able to fraudulently create the wETH tokens, almost 94,000 of which were later transferred to the ethereum blockchain, which powers transactions for ether.

Major cryptocurrency exchange Binance continues pushing operations in Ukraine by preparing to launch a new crypto payment card in the country.

Binance is looking to reach a dominant position in the crypto market of Ukraine by offering a wide range of local crypto services, Binance Ukraine’s new general manager Kirill Khomyakov said in a Monday interview with Forbes Ukraine.

“Binance card is not yet available for Ukrainian users, but we are actively working on its launch. This is one of our top priorities for 2022,” Khomyakov told Cointelegraph.

Apart from launching a crypto payment card, Binance Ukraine is also pursuing the active development of local services related to nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and fan tokens. The firm is planning to launch a fan token for a major sports team in Ukraine to enable nefan interactions soon, Khomyakov said.

While Ukraine’s crypto legislation doesn’t allow straightforward payments in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) as these assets are not recognized as legal tender, there is still no ban on crypto-derived transactions.

When bitcoin and ethereum rallied to records in November on news of wider adoption, politicians and athletes scrambled to ride the momentum by announcing they’d collect parts of their salary in crypto.

Among them were New York City Mayor Eric Adams, who vowed after his election that he’d accept his first three paychecks in bitcoin, and wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who opted to take his entire NFL salary in the token after signing a new contract with the Los Angeles Rams.

But the cryptocurrency sell-off that has dragged digital asset prices to lows shows that challenges around crypto payrolls remain and those vying to get their wages and other benefits in digital currencies may want to tread with caution.

 “Taking part of your salary in bitcoin is a way to publicly signal your support for the space and your belief that it will succeed. It’s a way to vote with your wallet.” Christian Catalani, founder of the MIT Cryptoeconomics Lab told Yahoo Finance. “Of course, because of the volatility, this involves risk — and that’s why most people only take a part they can afford to lose.”