Crypto News Headlines (04-May-2023)

PEPE, the self-proclaimed “most memeable memecoin,” has skyrocketed to more than $500 million in market capitalization in just over two weeks since launch.

Still, funding rates in perpetual futures tied to the token remain negative, indicating the dominance of bearish positions in the derivatives market.

A perpetual futures contract is an agreement with no expiration date to buy or sell the underlying asset at a predetermined price. Exchanges offering perpetual futures charge funding rates – or costs – of holding long (bullish) and short (bearish) positions to keep prices tethered with the spot market.

Texas and other U.S. state financial regulators have ordered a crypto “investment scam” purporting to use artificial intelligence (AI) to cease all activity in an order from Wednesday.

The scheme operated by Horatiu Caragaceanu, The Shark of Wall Street and markets coins known as TruthGPT Coin (TRUTH). The token is using images of Elon Musk, Binance Chief Executive Officer Changpeng “CZ” Zhao and Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin, said the Texas State Securities Board, which is joined by counterparts in New Jersey, Alabama, Montana and Kentucky.

“Artificial intelligence is buzzing,” Texas Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles said in a statement. “Bad actors continue their attempts to capitalize on this widespread public interest.”

A proposed 30% excise tax on cryptocurrency mining firms was the focus of a report released by the White House on Tuesday, in which the administration reiterated its stance that pinching miners’ profits is in the best interest of American communities and the environment.

“Firms do not have to pay for the full cost they impose on others,” the report states, adding that the proposed tax “encourages firms to start taking better account of the harms they impose on society.”

The proposed excise tax would impact digital asset miners beginning in 2024 and require any such firm to pay Uncle Sam a tax that’s based on their associated electricity costs—starting out at 10% and ticking up each year until it reaches 30%.

The White House’s 2024 budget, which introduced the tax in March, estimates that it could help the government reduce its deficit by $74 million in the first year, potentially growing to $444 million by the fiscal year 2033.

Officers from Ukraine’s Cyberpolice unit and Main Investigative Department, working with the Prosecutor General’s Office, have seized nine cryptocurrency exchanges, the National Police of Ukraine announced. Representatives of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also took part in what Ukrainian authorities described as a “multi-level international operation.”

The web platforms offered anonymous exchange of cryptocurrencies. They were employed to facilitate the legalization of illicit funds, a press release explained. Through these exchanges, criminals channeled digital assets obtained as a result of malware attacks and online fraud. Their services were advertised on closed hacker forums.

The network’s infrastructure, located on servers in the United States, a number of European countries and Ukraine, has been blocked during the operation. Investigators are now trying to identify all individuals involved in the criminal activities.

Major cryptocurrency exchanges around the world are launching trading of the Sui (SUI) token amid the Sui Network’s mainnet launch on May 3.

According to an official announcement by the Sui Foundation, the Sui mainnet went live at 12:00 pm UTC. Many global crypto trading platforms supported the Sui mainnet launch, enabling investors to buy and sell the new SUI token.

Crypto exchange Binance plans to debut SUI trading immediately after mainnet launch. The platform will allow users to trade between SUI and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin BTC tickers down $29,220, Tether USDT $1.00 and BNB BNB tickers down $326 at 12:15 pm UTC. The firm will also enable investors to exchange SUI against euros and Turkish liras.

Other big exchanges, including Huobi, KuCoin, ByBit, OKX and Poloniex, also announced SUI listings. KuCoin noted that it also plans to list SUI/USDT-margined futures and isolated margin trading pair SUI/USDT when its “liquidity meets the requirement.”

Bitcoin (BTC) could rally 20% to around $35,000 – $36,000, crypto-services provider Matrixport said in a research report on Thursday.

Bitcoin has been trading in a narrowing wedge that is about to be broken to the upside, the report said, adding that technically this could project a move higher by an amount equal to when the wedge started to be formed, a range of about 20%.

Matrixport says that while the Federal Reserve raised interest rates another 25 basis points yesterday, there is a strong probability that this was the last hike for this cycle. This could set the market up for another strong rally.

The Texas State Securities Board, including several state regulators, have come together to issue cease-and-desist orders against Horatiu Charlie Caragaceanu and his organizations, The Shark of Wall Street and, for promoting two cryptocurrencies named TruthGPT Coin and Elon Musk AI Token. The orders seek to clamp down on what they claim is a fraudulent securities scheme attempting to capitalize on the growing buzz around artificial intelligence (AI).

The TruthGPT Coin is being marketed as a cryptocurrency that utilizes an AI system called Elon Musk AI. The AI model can allegedly examine multiple digital assets, anticipate future cryptocurrency values, and distinguish lucrative investments from fraudulent ones. The parties involved are also promoting TruthGPT Coin as a highly profitable venture, even stating it could increase in worth by a staggering 10,000 times.

A new survey suggests one European capital is best poised to lure in even more of the industry.

European crypto projects have named Lisbon as the world’s most important crypto hub, according to its biannual State of European Crypto Report 2023 published today by European crypto investment firm Greenfield.

The report anonymously surveyed 68 heads of companies and protocols whose founding members are European in origin or are also headquartered in Europe. Despite the anonymized survey, a spokesperson from Greenfield estimated that a third of respondents were also portfolio companies.

Balaji Srinivasan, the ex-chief tech officer of U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase, has closed his million-dollar Bitcoin bet with the pseudonymous Twitter pundit James Medlock. On Tuesday, Srinivasan announced on his website and social media that he has settled the apparently losing bet ahead of time.

Medlock made the bet on March 16 when he tweeted: “I’ll bet anyone $1 million dollars that the U.S. does not enter hyperinflation.” Srinivasan took it on the following day, asking Medlock to buy 1 BTC and promising to send him $1 million if the leading crypto’s price doesn’t reach $1 million within 90 days.

Under a mutual agreement with Medlock, the venture capitalist donated $500,000 to the Bitcoin Core developers at Chaincode Labs and an equal amount of money to Give Directly, a charity supporting people living in poverty in Africa and America.

The French Senate’s Committee on Economic Affairs recently approved an amendment to pending legislation allowing registered cryptocurrency companies to hire social media influencers for advertising and promotional purposes.

According to a translation of the amendment provided by Bing, the new wording would allow companies that are registered with France’s Financial Markets Authority (AMF) to hire influencers for their products:

“The current wording is more restrictive than the existing provisions in the Consumer Code, since it excludes the possibility for digital asset service providers (PSAN) registered with the Financial Markets Authority (AMF) to use commercial influence. Consequently, this amendment introduces this possibility for PSANs registered or approved with the AMF.”