Crypto News Headlines (04-Jan-2023)

Indians moved more than $3.8 billion in cumulative trading volume from local to international crypto exchanges after the nation announced stiff crypto tax rules on Feb. 1, 2022, according to a research study by Esya Centre, a New Delhi-based technology policy think tank.

A total of $3.852 billion (INR 32,000 crore) was shifted during Feb-Oct 2022. “Of this, cumulative volume of $3,055 million was offshored within six months of the current financial year,” the report said.

The report assumes significance as it provides the first monetary estimate of the impact of India’s controversial crypto tax policy on domestic exchanges. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government announced a 30% tax on crypto profits and a 1% tax deducted at source (TDS) on all transactions on Feb. 1, 2022.

Iran’s Organization for Collection and Sale of State-Owned Property (OCSSOP) has started to return to miners some of the mining devices seized in raids on underground crypto farms. It was ordered to do so by Iranian courts, the English-language business daily Financial Tribune reported.

Quoted by the country’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance, the head of the organization, Abdolmajid Eshtehadi, detailed:

Currently, some 150,000 [units of] crypto mining equipment are held by the OCSSOP, a large part of which will be released following judicial rulings. Machines have already been returned.

The official further elaborated that the Iran Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution Company (Tavanir) should come forward with proposals on how to make use of the mining hardware without causing damage to the national grid.

The Federal Reserve and two other U.S. regulators today issued a warning to banks about cryptocurrencies.

In a joint statement, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) said banks should be aware of the “significant volatility and vulnerabilities over the past year” the crypto industry experienced this year.

The regulators added that banks with exposure to crypto could especially be at risk. So-called “challenger banks,” or next-generation financial institutions, have started offering digital asset services around the world.

Cryptocurrencies will be a hot topic as the United States Congress resumes and the battle lines are drawn between lawmakers for and against the fledgling financial industry.

But the Blockchain Association reports that more than 100 crypto industry advocates are fighting to help strike the right balance between protection and innovation.

The 118th U.S. Congress convened in Washington D.C. on Jan. 3. It’s scheduled to continue until Jan. 3, 2025, during the final two years of President Joe Biden’s first term.

The crypto industry is currently in the crosshairs following several high-profile meltdowns last year, the largest being the collapse of FTX in early November.

In a Twitter thread on Jan. 3, the Director of Government Relations at the Blockchain Association, Ron Hammond, highlighted the challenges and opportunities for Congress on the day it resumed.

As a part of its reform of crypto regulation, Indonesia will create a crypto exchange in 2023, according to reports. The platform is planned to be launched prior to a shift of regulatory power from commodities to securities authority.

On Jan. 4, the head of the Commodity Futures Trading Regulatory Agency of Indonesia (Bappebti), Didid Noordiatmoko, stated that a crypto exchange should be set up this year. The move comes as a part of broader financial reform launched in December 2022.

In accordance with the reform, in the next two years, the crypto oversight will be taken from Bappebti, a commodities-focused agency, by the Financial Services Authority (FSA).

In the final week of 2022, bitcoin’s tepid price movement veered from a recent, year-end pattern of wide swings stemming largely from investors’ anticipation of heightened volatility.

Bitcoin moved just 1.6% last year compared to 7% and 20% shifts in 2021 and 2020, respectively.

The weak price action capped a disappointing 2022 for BTC – a year that was hard on risk assets as the tech-focused Nasdaq and S&P 500, which has a strong technology component, plummeted 33% and 19%, respectively.

For the first time in its history, bitcoin’s price declined in four consecutive quarters.

An executive linked to South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Bithumb, was found dead in front of his home in southern Seoul Friday, Yonhap News reported.

The executive, surnamed Park, is the vice president of KOSDAQ-listed broadcast equipment supplier Vidente Co., the largest shareholder of Bithumb Holdings Co. that controls South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. Vidente also holds a stake in Bithumb Korea.

According to local media, the executive committed suicide by jumping off a building while being investigated by South Korean prosecutors for embezzlement and stock price manipulation.

The UK’s National Crime Agency is recruiting a group of law enforcement officers to investigate crypto crimes, after a year where crypto hacks globally totalled $3 billion.

As part of the national cyber crime unit “crypto cell,” investigators “will be dedicated to a proactive cryptocurrency remit with the right tools and capabilities to target UK based subjects,” according to a job advert posted on the government’s website, first reported by Financial News.

The Financial Conduct Authority found that crypto was the leading sector for financial scam alerts in the UK between March 2021 and April 2022. The regulator opened 432 cases looking into crypto-related scams during that period.

The crypto market kicked off a new year of trading in a positive mood.

The CoinDesk Market Index (CMI) is up 1.3% so far in 2023, with all six sector indices in the green. That’s a reversal from the fourth quarter of last year, when the benchmark index slid 12% from September through Dec. 15.

“The entire market is generally stabilizing, accompanied by apathetic market participation,” Arcane Research, which provides analysis of digital asset trends, wrote in a newsletter on Tuesday.

Lido DAO (LDO), the governance token of the Lido decentralized autonomous organization, grabbed the trophy as the top performer so far in 2023 in CMI.

The LDO token’s price has risen from 95 cents at the end of 2022 to $1.20 on the third day of the new year, surging 26% so far in 2023, according to data from CoinGecko. The rally follows Ethereum developers’ Dec. 8 announcement that the network’s next hard fork that will take place in March.

The Israeli Securities Authority (ISA) proposes a framework for regulating digital assets as an increasing number of Israeli investors are exposed to digital assets, and over 150 companies operate in Israel, according to the regulator.

The regulator released a proposal in January 2023, outlining its purpose to achieve the “double value” of responding to the risks associated with investing in digital assets alongside giving the authority means to adopt a regulation.

The authority has established multiple committees over the past several years to examine and regulate the issuance of cryptocurrencies and promote the development of digital markets in Israel.

The latest committee was tasked with examining the authority’s policy on investment products in digital assets.