Crypto News Headlines (05-Jul-2022)

Samir Shah, formerly JPMorgan’s head of asset management sales, has left the bank to take up the position of chief operating officer at cryptocurrency-focused investment firm Pantera Capital.

Shah said that after “12 fantastic years with JPMorgan,” spanning roles in sales, strategy and digital, it was time to start a new professional chapter, via a LinkedIn post.

“As for my next step, I am thrilled to share that I will be joining Pantera Capital as Chief Operating Officer. Pantera is one of the industry’s leading investors in blockchain technology, and I’m excited to partner with Dan Morehead, Joey Krug and the broader Pantera team to help take the organization to new heights!” Shah said in his post.

Shah follows a well-trodden path from Wall Street into crypto. At the beginning of May this year, long-time crypto and blockchain lead at JPMorgan, Christine Moy, left the bank to become head of digital assets at private equity firm Apollo Global Management.

The British Army confirmed Sunday that its official Youtube and Twitter accounts were breached.

The army’s verified Twitter handle with nearly 363K followers retweeted a number of posts promoting non-fungible token (NFT) scams before they were removed by Twitter. During the breach, the account name, profile picture, and banner image were changed to resemble NFT collections.

Meanwhile, the army’s Youtube account, which has 177K subscribers, was renamed “Ark Invest” and four live videos promoting bitcoin and ether giveaway scams were uploaded to the account. The scammers advertised that for every bitcoin or ether sent to them, you will receive twice the amount back. The videos featured Tesla CEO Elon Musk, former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, and Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood.

Scammers often use public figures and celebrities to promote their cryptocurrency scams, particularly bitcoin and ether giveaways.

The price of KuCoin (KCS), native token of the KuCoin cryptocurrency exchange, has tanked over the past seven days following insolvency rumors. At the time of writing, KuCoin was down 17.34% in the past week, trading for $8.75, according to CoinMarketCap.

KuCoin is the world’s fifth largest cryptocurrency exchange, with a 24-hour trading volume of $928 million. Its KCS token is the No. 49 digital asset on CMC, with a market cap of $858 million.

But earlier this week, rumors started to spread on Crypto Twitter that KuCoin would halt withdrawals because it was about to go bust. KuCoin​​ CEO Johnny Lyu responded by saying that the company had no exposure to LUNA, 3AC, or Babel.

“No ‘immense suffer’ from any ‘coin collapse’, no plan to halt withdrawal, everything on KuCoin is operating well,” Lyu said on Twitter, adding that “KuCoin reserves the right to take legal actions” against those spreading false rumors.

The profitability of bitcoin mining has been dwindling compared to that of Ethereum in recent months. Ethereum miners had consistently surpassed bitcoin for almost a year. That is until now when the returns from bitcoin mining have taken the lead once more.

Data shows that bitcoin miners have been recovering in comparison to their ETH counterparts. This has been obvious in the closing gap of the last several months where Ethereum miners had barely managed to stay ahead. This would continue until the month of June, an uncertain month for all who are involved in cryptocurrencies, and this, by extension, has affected the profitability of ETH mining due to the decline in price.

For last month, the total amount generated by bitcoin miners had come out to $656.47 million, while Ethereum’s numbers had been a total of $549.58 million for the same time period. This shows that Bitcoin miners had surpassed their Ethereum counterparts by more than $100 million for the month of June.

South Africa-based H20 Securities has reportedly raised $150 million from the GEM Digital investment firm through the sale of the H20N token.

By investing such a tremendous amount, GEM Digital will hold H20N tokens, which will be used to guide funding in water delivery infrastructure in areas that lack sufficient access to fresh water.

GEM Digital is a $3.4 billion Bahamas-based investment firm specializing in alternative investments such as digital assets and resource extraction devices. H20 Securities aims to bring more significant development in water infrastructure worldwide and hopes that its solution will increase water availability to the world’s population.

In a joint announcement on July 4, CEO of H20 Securities Julius Steyn said, “The focus with the H2ON token is mainly on the financing of water projects internationally and not so much on the technical engineering and construction of such projects.”

Bitcoin (BTC) inched up 5% to reclaim the $20,000 territory as the 4th of July hype provided surprise gains. Tuesday saw a comeback on the cryptocurrency market, with the majority of tokens trading in the green.

Bitcoin’s Tuesday rally was the first for the coin in five days, with the 4th of July daily candle about to close, and providing some dose of optimism in the dreary bear market.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies remained virtually unchanged on Monday, with crypto assets trading at downcast prices after a huge selloff in recent months.

The worldwide cryptocurrency market capitalization was trading at $909 billion, an increase of more than 6 percent in the last 24 hours. However, the total trading volume of cryptocurrencies increased by nearly 37 percent to $55 billion.

The U.K. government is seeking views from investors, professionals and companies on taxation of decentralized finance (DeFi) activities.

Specifically, the government wishes to gather evidence on the taxation of cryptoasset loans and staking, according to an announcement Tuesday.

“The government is interested in ascertaining whether administrative burdens and costs could be reduced for taxpayers engaging in this activity, and whether the tax treatment can be better aligned with the underlying economics of the transactions involved,” the announcement read.

Those wishing to submit evidence have until Aug. 31 to do so.

The government outlined a set of initiatives in April to make the U.K. a global crypto stronghold. Among them was conducting “major surgery” on the taxation system to “make it work more easily for crypto,” according to Economic Secretary John Glen.

Cryptocurrency crimes have several traits that make them difficult to detect by traditional intelligence units. This is why some countries have already dedicated part of their budget to building resources to face these new tech crimes. Brazil, a country where numerous cryptocurrency-related scams have happened, has officially reported the launch of a cryptocurrency-dedicated investigation unit.

This new unit, denominated “Crypto,” is being created by the public prosecution office of the Federal District in the country, and will perform its duties by helping public prosecutors deal with cryptocurrency cases. In the same way, the unit will target the consumers of crypto products to warn and educate them about the safe use of cryptocurrency assets.

Frederico Meinberg, the coordinator of the unit and public prosecutor, talked about the training that the agents in the Crypto unit must follow. In an interview, Meinberg stated:

The best training for an agent dealing with digital assets is to interact with the market. Without practice, we can offer the best tools that, in the end, the agent will not know what to do with. That is why we always focus on the interaction of agents with the ecosystem, starting with exchanges and peer-to-peer sellers.

A day after the U.S Independence day, Bitcoin (BTC), the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, is up 5% over the past 24 hours and is currently trading at around $20,107, according to data from CoinMarketCap.

Ethereum (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency, has gained 9% in the last 24 hours and is changing hands for around $1,148.

The global cryptocurrency market capitalization is up 5.3% to $910.9 billion in the last 24 hours, suggests data from CoinMarketCap.

Other top cryptocurrencies, including Binance Coin (6.6%), Solana (7.8%), Polygon (14%), and Avalanche (5.26%), have also posted tremendous gains over the past 24 hours.

However, the recent gains are not significant enough to offset the losses from the recent crypto crash.

Bitcoin is still down 70% from its all-time high of $68,789.63 recorded in November 2021; Ethereum has shed 76% from its picotop of $4,891.70 recorded in the same month.

Zuckerberg has chosen his moment well: the crypto sector is currently going through an unprecedented crisis of confidence marked by a fall in the price of digital currencies. Bitcoin, the king of cryptocurrencies, has lost 71.3% of its value since its all-time high on November 10, according to data from CoinGecko. Ether, the second cryptocurrency by market value, is down 78% from its November all-time high as well. Overall, the crypto market has lost over $2.1 trillion in eight months.

Besides falling cryptocurrency prices, attention is focused on the liquidity crunch that is currently affecting many prominent crypto firms. Indeed, the collapse of sister tokens Luna and UST in May just caused the bankruptcy of the hedge fund Three Arrows, which had borrowed large sums of money from a multitude of crypto lenders like Voyager Digital  (VYGVF) – Get Voyager Digital Ltd Report, Babel Finance and BlockFi to invest in Luna. Faced with the default of payment by Three Arrows Capital or 3AC, these firms are currently in great financial difficulty and some have had to suspend withdrawals. Basically, their customers no longer have access to their money.