News Headlines (13th November 2023)

Optimism surrounding the potential approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF has helped to drive the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust’s discount to 10.35% below its net asset value, its lowest level since July 2021, per data from Ycharts.

The Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) enables investors to trade shares in trusts that hold large pools of Bitcoin, with each share tracking the price of Bitcoin—albeit approximately. Since February 2021, GBTC has traded at a discount relative to the actual price of Bitcoin, dropping as low as 48% in December 2022.

Cathie Wood’s ARK Invest sold over 200,000 shares in Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) on Nov. 10 as the BTC investment vehicle rallied around 10% last week.

ARK offloaded 201,047 GBTC shares from its Next Generation Internet ETF (ARKW), according to an emailed update. The shares were valued $6.03 million based on Friday’s closing price. GBTC remains the largest holding of ARKW, with a weighting of 9.97% worth about $132 million.

The sale followed smaller transactions totaling about $5.7 million over several days earlier in the week.*1u3fcdg*_up*MQ..*_ga*MTI2MTg4Mjk0Mi4xNjk5ODc4NjUz*_ga_VM3STRYVN8*MTY5OTg3ODY1MS4xLjEuMTY5OTg3OTMyNC4wLjAuMA..

According to Cointelegraph, major stablecoin issuer Tether has minted 4 billion USDT tokens over the past month. On November 10, Tether issued another 1 billion USDT on the Tron blockchain, as reported by blockchain data provider Whale Alert. This latest minting came just a few days after Tether issued 1 billion USDT on Ethereum on November 9, in addition to 2 billion USDT issued in two batches on the Tron blockchain on November 3 and October 19.

Tether’s chief technology officer and new CEO, Paolo Ardoino, commented on the Whale Alert data, noting that the latest 1 billion USDT transaction on the Tron network was a ‘USDT inventory replenish.’ He explained that this amount would be used as inventory for the next period issuance requests and chain swaps. Based on Whale Alert data, Tether should have minted 22.75 billion USDT in 2023, with 13 billion, or 57%, having been issued on the Tron blockchain. The remaining amount of 9.75 billion USDT was issued on the Ethereum blockchain.

According to on-chain detective ZachXBT, a cryptocurrency wallet has recently suffered a breach. The attack, which transpired on November 11, resulted in the loss of the wallet’s $27 million in Tether stablecoins (USDT).

According to ZachXBT’s analysis, the stolen funds were swiftly converted from USDT to Ethereum (ETH). Following this, they underwent a series of transactions across various services, including FixedFloat and ChangeNow, a common tactic used by hackers to hide the trail of stolen assets. The final phase involved bridging these assets to Bitcoin through THORChain, a decentralized liquidity protocol.

The origin of the funds adds an intriguing layer to the story. The wallet had received the sum through a withdrawal from Binance just a week prior to the heist. Further deepening the connection, ZachXBT’s investigation revealed that in May 2019, the same wallet received funds from an address marked by Etherscan as a Binance smart contract deployer.

The AMF survey, which included over a thousand new retail investors in France, shows that 24% of French adults have investments in various financial instruments. Among these, a notable proportion has invested in cryptocurrencies. While traditional investments continue to dominate portfolios, the inclination towards crypto assets, especially among the youth, highlights a generational shift in investment preferences and the progressive adoption of digital finance solutions in the country.

9% of French Adults Now Invested in Crypto Assets, AMF Survey Reveals

The profile of these new investors is younger and more diverse than ever before, with an average age of 36 years and a significant portion being under 35. The data indicates that these individuals are not just looking for financial growth but are also influenced by social phenomena and digital trends. The rise in crypto asset ownership is particularly pronounced among this demographic, suggesting a correlation between age, digital savviness, and investment choices in emerging technologies.

The crypto excitement doesn’t seem to end. Bitcoin (BTC), after cooling off last Friday, continued to bolt upwards—it hit an 18-month high on Thursday, crossing into $37,000 per coin on optimism surrounding the potential approval of a spot exchange-traded fund (ETF).

Bitcoin’s boom—most likely caused by a note from Bloomberg Intelligence analysts saying that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission now has an eight-day window to approve the applications for a Bitcoin ETF—brought the rest of the market with it.

Grayscale’s Solana Trust (GSOL) is trading at a premium of 869% to its underlying assets amid a surge in institutional interest in the cryptocurrency industry, CoinGlass data shows.

The trust’s shares are priced at $202 following a 653% rise since the start of September, while the SOL token trebled to $58 from $19. CoinGlass shows it holds 115,900 tokens ($6.78 million) on behalf of its clients.

The widening premium comes after the underlying asset, SOL, surged 20% on Friday. Positive sentiment continues to build after FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried was found guilty on seven counts of fraud earlier this month. The token was dubbed one of the “Sam Coins” before the exchange’s collapse because it had invested millions into the ecosystem and built Serum, a decentralized exchange, on the Solana network.*1u3fcdg*_up*MQ..*_ga*MTI2MTg4Mjk0Mi4xNjk5ODc4NjUz*_ga_VM3STRYVN8*MTY5OTg3ODY1MS4xLjEuMTY5OTg3OTMyNC4wLjAuMA..

The National Stock Market Commission (CNMV), Spain’s principal financial regulator, called out the fraudulent crypto assets promos on X (formerly Twitter) and reiterated the obligation of companies to comply with local laws.

On Nov. 8, in a speech at the Deloitte annual conference for the Spanish financial sector in Madrid, the CNMV head, Rodrigo Valbuena, revealed that the ads in question “make illegal use of the image of some Spanish actors and the design and identity of a national media to try to obtain data and money from investors.”

Valbuena reminded the audience that Spanish legislation holds “internet companies, media and social networks” responsible for taking measures against investment promotions by unlicensed entities and suggests sanctioning the non-compliance. He also promised that his agency would take this case seriously:

“I can assure you that we will scrupulously exercise all our capacities, supervisory powers and our supervisory and sanctioning powers in these cases.”

According to Coincu, a Hong Kong lawmaker has proposed integrating Bitcoin purchases into the city’s licensed exchanges as part of the revived investment immigration program. This move signifies a progressive stance toward the utilization of cryptocurrencies in high-stakes financial ventures.

After an eight-year hiatus, Hong Kong is set to reinvigorate its investment immigration program, with an entry threshold of approximately US$3.84 million. The proposal to include Bitcoin in the program adds a layer of innovation to traditional investment avenues and could attract high-net-worth individuals seeking to leverage the potential benefits of cryptocurrency within a licensed exchange framework.

According to Edaily, a South Korean news outlet, Bithumb could pursue an initial public offering (IPO) by 2025. Yoo Kyung Lim, a journalist, noted that the exchange’s potential IPO strategy is seen as an ambitious effort to surpass Upbit’s market supremacy.

Upbit currently holds an 85% share of South Korea’s cryptocurrency trading market. The briefing highlights Lee Jung-hoon’s comeback as the major stakeholder on Bithumb’s board, with a focus on fortifying the firm’s governance.

Sources close to the situation reveal that Bithumb has appointed Samsung Securities as its fund manager, with IPO preparations already underway. The exchange aims for a Kosdaq listing, yet Bithumb chose not to comment to Edaily on these developments.