News Headlines (15th JAN 2024)

It’s unclear how much fresh capital the new spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETF) will attract, but significant funds from other crypto products are expected to pour in, J.P. Morgan said in a Thursday research report.

The market reaction to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) reluctant approval of spot bitcoin (BTC) ETFs has been relatively muted, with the focus now shifting to how much capital these new ETFs will pull in, the report said

“We are skeptical of the optimism shared by many market participants at the moment that a lot of fresh capital will enter the crypto space as a result of the spot bitcoin ETF approval,” analysts led by Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou wrote.

Bitcoin dipped below $42,000 early Monday morning, as the crypto market took a bearish turn after multiple spot Bitcoin ETFs began trading in the U.S. last week.

Per data from CoinGecko, Bitcoin briefly dropped to a low of $41, 753.68 early Monday morning, before recovering to trade at its current level of $42,600, down around 0.6% on the day and 3.5% in the past week.

The cryptocurrency’s price surged to almost $49,000 as the first spot Bitcoin ETFs began trading in the U.S. last week, but momentum was short-lived, with traders appearing to sell the news of the much-anticipated event.

Over a year after the infamous Terra, FTX and Celsius collapses in 2022 and the many more incidents that have plagued the industry since then, execs bring up the role of crypto rating agencies in mitigating risks within the crypto sphere.

In 2022, Ben Goertzel, the CEO of decentralized artificial intelligence (AI) firm SingularityNET, argued that rating agencies could rebuild trust in crypto much more than regulators. Fast forward to 2024, and the executive told Cointelegraph he still cannot find any regulatory efforts to increase his faith in protecting crypto uses. He explained:

“Nothing that the world’s regulatory agencies have done since 2022 has increased my faith that they are going to be able in practice to do more good than harm for customers or service providers in the crypto space.”

According to Cointelegraph: South Korea’s financial regulator, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), is reportedly discussing the possibility of imposing sanctions and regulations on the use of cryptocurrency mixers within the country, emulating recent measures implemented in the United States.

Crypto mixers, sometimes referred to as tumblers, are designed to enhance the anonymity of cryptocurrency transactions by mixing identifiable or “tainted” funds with others, thereby obscuring their original source. While originally intended to maintain user privacy, these services have increasingly been exploited for illicit money laundering activities.

In early December 2023, a multitude of cryptocurrency enthusiasts eagerly anticipated the possible onset of altcoin season. Reporting on this trending topic at the time, News referred to’s Altcoin Season Index, which rated a 47 out of 100.

This indicated that as of Dec. 9, 2023, it wasn’t yet altcoin season, at least based on the index’s assessment. Today, however, the narrative painted by the measurement is entirely different.

A preserved snapshot from’s index on Jan. 14, 2024, clearly declares “it’s altcoin season.” The index is positioned at 76 out of 100, with any score above 75 signaling an altcoin season.

A feature of the XRP Ledger network was used in an unsuccessful exploit attempt on prominent crypto exchange Bitfinex, CEO Paolo Ardoino confirmed in an X post on Monday.

Nearly $15 billion worth of XRP were flagged by on-chain service WhaleAlerts to be moved in an apparent transaction early Monday – amounting to nearly half of the token’s $31 billion market capitalization.

But the actual transfer was just for a few cents worth of XRP, and failed as the sender “did not have enough liquidity,” blockchain data from the transaction shows.

Lazarus ravaged the crypto world in 2023, with at least $293 million in stolen funds attributed to the North Korean cybercrime cabal.

That was a fraction of what it nabbed in 2022 — a staggering $1.7 billion.

But the thefts show Lazarus Group and North Korea-linked hackers “continue to evolve in sophistication” in both tactics and money-laundering channels, Erin Plante, vice president of investigations at Chainalysis, told DL News.

The threat of Lazarus will rise with crypto prices as many expect a new bull market.

BlackRock may have gone with a boring ad campaign for its spot Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF), but it may just be the secret sauce for the wealthy boomer market, according to commentators.

On Jan. 11, investment giant BlackRock released its first video ad for its newly launched iShares Bitcoin Trust ETF (IBIT). The ad consists of an almost two-minute video featuring a BlackRock executive outlining Bitcoin’s value proposition and how investors can receive exposure to its new ETF.

Jay Jacobs, BlackRock’s United States head of thematics and alternative ETFs, states in the ad that IBIT is easily accessible, conveniently removes operational burdens and is issued under BlackRock’s reputation and expertise in the ETF space. Commentators noticed an intentional lack of flair and crypto jargon compared to other Bitcoin ETF ads.

According to Foresight News, KakaoPay, a mobile payment and digital wallet service launched by South Korea’s Kakao Corporation, will stop offering cryptocurrency services starting February 16. Since December 2022, KakaoPay has been collaborating with four South Korean companies to provide cryptocurrency services. The platform allows users to make online payments, transfers, and bill payments through a smartphone application.

The meme coin cryptocurrency market has seen a 3.2% uptick in value compared to the U.S. dollar, with the sector achieving approximately $1.25 billion in global trade volume over 24 hours. Dogecoin (DOGE), the leading asset in market capitalization within the meme coin category, experienced a 1.2% rise, and has increased by 2.9% over the previous week.

In contrast, shiba inu (SHIB) recorded a slight decline of 0.1% on Sunday, though it has appreciated 6.4% in the last week. Bonk (BONK), ranking third in the meme coin segment, surged by 9% against the greenback during Sunday’s trading period. Moreover, BONK has climbed 44.2% this past week.