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Velvet Weekly Roundup: ETH Spot ETF Incoming, Polygon & Near Partnership, & more!
Another fascinating week in crypto with BlackRock now filing for an Ethereum Spot ETF (sorry Bitcoin Maxi's), and Warren and others significantly overstating how much crypto is going toward Hamas.
Quick Hitting Alpha
Arbitrum's STIP distributed $58M in ARB across 29 schemes, leading to a significant increase in ARB's value, a recovery of its TVL to $2B, and a 37% rise in daily active users.
US Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn has approved Celsius Network's restructuring plan, enabling the bankrupt crypto lender to repay customer funds and transform into a creditor-owned crypto mining venture.
Ethereum reached year-to-date highs of over $2,100 following the registration of BlackRock's iShares Ethereum Trust, sparking speculation about a potential Ethereum ETF.
Bloomberg's Eric Balchunas believes the SEC is likely to approve a spot Bitcoin ETF application, citing the SEC's recent legal loss and past approvals of Ether futures ETFs.
UK's Standard Chartered's venture capital division, SC Ventures, and Japan's SBI Holdings have teamed up to establish a $100M investment firm focusing on cryptocurrency startups.
The Graph is preparing to introduce blockchain data services, including those that feature AI-assisted querying.
Evmos has outlined plans to phase out Cosmos transactions, indicating a potential shift towards closer alignment with Ethereum.
The chief executive officer of Roblox, David Baszucki, has expressed his aspiration to integrate cross-platform NFTs and digital objects within the game.
Polygon Labs and the NEAR Foundation are collaborating to create a zero-knowledge prover for Wasm blockchains, aiming to link them with the Ethereum ecosystem for increased options and scalability.
Binance has launched a new digital asset wallet, compatible with its centralized services and DeFi protocols, offering cross-chain swaps, DEX trading, and enhanced security through multi-party computation.
In The News
Economist Nouriel Roubini, known for his strong criticism of cryptocurrencies, is launching a blockchain-based stablecoin through his fintech company, Atlas Capital. Named the Atlas Climate Token (ACT), it will be pegged to a portfolio of real-world assets including climate-resilient REITs, strategic commodities, inflation-hedged sovereign bonds, and gold. The project also plans to launch an ETF tied to the Atlas Roubini Macro Navigator Index in Q1 2024. Despite Roubini's previous comments on crypto as a "collapsing Ponzi scheme," this move indicates a significant shift in his stance. However, some critics warn that the promise of solving global issues through decentralization can be misleading for retail investors.
Circle, the stablecoin issuer, has introduced the v2.2 upgrade for USDC and EURC, bringing reduced gas costs, improved account abstraction support, and enhanced transaction security on EVM blockchains. The upgrade, which is fully backwards compatible and doesn't require any action from developers or users, will implement six new changes to the USDC and EURC smart contracts. These include signature validations from smart contract wallets, improved blocklist checking, enhanced resilience against forks, and a one-time rename of the EURC symbol from EUROC. The v2.2 upgrades will be rolled out starting Nov. 9 and are expected to be completed in the next few months.
Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has launched a Web3 wallet that will work across 30 blockchain networks. The new product will compete with similar offerings from MetaMask, Trust Wallet, and other exchanges like Coinbase and OKX. The wallet uses Trust Wallet's Wallet as a Service technology and employs multi-party computation for enhanced security. Users can create a wallet via Binance's mobile app after completing KYC procedures.
Mantle has collaborated with Ondo Finance to launch USDY, a yield-generating, real-world asset-backed token. As an upgradeable Ethereum ERC-20 token, USDY offers an alternative to stablecoins like USDT and USDC. A wrapped version of USDY called mUSD maintaining a $1 peg is also planned. The tokens can be used as collateral for derivatives and lending protocols, among other uses.
The U.S. has a history of decisions based on flawed intelligence, raising concerns that misinformation could impact cryptocurrency legislation. Recently, Senator Elizabeth Warren claimed Hamas had raised over $130 million in crypto, a statistic disputed by blockchain analytics firm Elliptic. They stated there was no evidence to support such a high figure and that the true amount was around $450,000. An overstatement of 28,788%! The disagreement between Senator Warren and Senator Lummis on crypto regulation could shape the future of digital asset innovation in America.
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