News Headlines (14th November 2023)

Bim Afolami, the member of parliament for Hitchin and Harpenden, was appointed economic secretary to the U.K. Treasury on Monday, a role that includes responsibility for crypto and central bank digital currency (CBDC) policy.

Afolami replaces Andrew Griffith, who had said he wanted the country to be a crypto hub despite the collapse of crypto exchange FTX. Griffith also helped see through the Financial Services and Markets Bill that gave regulators more power over crypto during his tenure.

Last year, Afolami met with executives from crypto exchange Coinbase to discuss the financial services environment. “It is vitally important that we have an appropriate regulatory regime for financial services,” he wrote on his website.*7l6w06*_up*MQ..*_ga*NzQ5OTM2MDk3LjE2OTk5NjQwMTg.*_ga_VM3STRYVN8*MTY5OTk2NDAxNy4xLjEuMTY5OTk2NDA0OS4wLjAuMA..

Cboe Digital today announced plans for margin Bitcoin and Ethereum futures.

The move will mean the platform will become the first to offer both spot and leveraged derivatives trading in one place, Monday’s announcement said.

A margined futures contract requires the buyer and seller to deposit an initial margin and maintain a minimum margin balance as long as the contract remains open. Futures contracts themselves are a type of derivative that allow investors to bet on the future price movements of an asset.

BC Technology Group, the operator of Hong Kong’s publicly listed cryptocurrency exchange OSL, has announced a significant investment from industry firm BGX.

BC Technology entered into a partnership with BGX, which agreed to subscribe for shares in BC Technology for an investment of about 710 million Hong Kong dollars ($90.1 million), the firms said in a joint announcement on Nov. 14.

This strategic investment will involve the subscription of new shares under a specific mandate, subject to approval by shareholders, the announcement notes.

According to the firms, the investment marks a testament to OSL’s commitment to setting new standards in digital asset security, compliance and technological innovation. As previously reported by Cointelegraph, OSL was one of the first crypto exchanges to acquire a Hong Kong crypto license in 2023.

According to Foresight News, Singapore-based cryptocurrency investment platform Bake has laid off approximately 50 employees, reducing its team size to around 120 members. The move aims to achieve a sustainable balance between income and expenses, without cutting back on vertical business directions. Discussions regarding potential changes in the organization’s leadership have been ongoing, but nothing has been confirmed or determined so far. Once a decision is made, it will be communicated internally before being made public. If a leadership transition occurs, it will not happen suddenly and will prioritize business continuity through handover and transition plans.

This Monday dawned with nine cryptocurrencies achieving notable double-digit spikes in the early trading hours. Topping the list was memecoin (MEME), which climbed 44.28% against the dollar. Celestia (TIA) also made impressive strides, surging 29.25% against the greenback within the same timeframe. Not far behind, zrx (0X) and worldcoin (WLD) rose by 19.36% and 18.81%, respectively.

Currently, the day’s cumulative global trading volume has hit $64.04 billion, spread over 929 trading platforms and a sprawling ecosystem of over 10,000 virtual currencies. Among those making headlines for gains on Monday were filecoin (FIL), escalating 14.96%, and osmosis (OSMO), which appreciated by 12.5% within the past day. Other significant risers of the day include KUJI, YFI, FLOKI, and SNT.

Wallets linked to bankrupt crypto exchange FTX continue to move millions of dollars worth of Solana’s SOL as the token’s near 150% monthly rally takes a pause.

On-chain analysis tool PeckShield flagged that some FTX-labeled addresses had transferred 250,000 SOL, worth just over $13.5 million at the time, and $4 million in USDT stablecoins to crypto exchange Binance and trading firm Wintermute.

These wallets are controlled by a debtor group that is in charge of handling the FTX bankruptcy proceedings, including its multi-billion dollar asset holdings. Moving to exchanges may likely indicate a sale of those tokens on the open market.*7l6w06*_up*MQ..*_ga*NzQ5OTM2MDk3LjE2OTk5NjQwMTg.*_ga_VM3STRYVN8*MTY5OTk2NDAxNy4xLjEuMTY5OTk2NDA0OS4wLjAuMA..

A Grok token—not THE token, since it’s not officially attached to Elon Musk’s recently launched AI service—hit a $160 million market capitalization just eight days after its debut.

But as an 8-day-old meme coin that’s not actually issued by the AI chatbot that it shares a name with, it’s experiencing a lot of volatility. While this story was being written, the GROK token’s market capitalization dropped as low as $78 million according to DexTools.

Its value has soared by 13,000% over the past week, with a doubling of prices in just 24 hours. But to be clear, that means it has reached an all-time high of $0.02, according to CoinGecko.

The Democratic Party of Korea, which holds 167 out of 300 seats in the National Assembly, has made it mandatory for prospective candidates to disclose their digital asset holdings before the 2024 general election.

According to the local outlet, News1, the disclosure will be a part of the party’s effort to show the “high moral standards” of its candidates. The chairman of the Democratic Party’s strategic planning committee, Han Byung-do, reportedly stated in a closed-door meeting with journalists:

“We have decided to verify whether candidates have conflicts of interest in virtual assets from the screening stage of the verification committee.”

In the case of false reports, the party will cancel that person’s candidature. However, Byung-do didn’t elaborate on any consequences for holding crypto.

According to Cointelegraph, a survey by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reveals that cryptocurrencies are the second most popular type of investment asset among the adult French population. The survey, published by France’s principal financial regulator, the Financial Markets Authority (AMF), on November 13, shows that 9.4% of the French population holds crypto assets. This figure is only slightly lower than those holding the most popular type of investment asset, real estate funds (10.7%). Additionally, 2.8% of respondents own nonfungible tokens (NFTs).

The survey also examined the group of ‘new investors’ — those who have invested for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. These investors are primarily men (64%) and significantly younger than traditional investors, with an average age of 36 compared to 51 for the latter. Among this category, 54% hold crypto assets.

The Central Bank of Brazil issued a statement clarifying the state of the cryptocurrency regulation in the country regarding the operation of unlicensed exchanges. In its 40,874 communication, the bank revealed that the conditions and deadlines for virtual assets services providers (VASPs) to adapt to Brazil’s cryptocurrency law would be established in a normative act later.

Furthermore, João André Calvino Marques Pereira, head of the financial system regulation department of the bank, revealed that crypto platforms can still operate without a license during this period.

In the bank’s document, Calvino Marques stated:

Until the normative act on the matter comes into force, virtual asset service providers will be able to operate independently of prior authorization from the Central Bank of Brazil.