- Millions in Crypto Is Crossing the Russia-China Border Daily. There, Tether Is King. Chinese importers in Russia are buying up to $30 million a day of tether from Moscow’s OTC trading desks. They use the cryptocurrency to send large sums back to their home country, which has strict capital controls. Previously the merchants used bitcoin for this, but when the market crashed in 2018 they switched to tether. Despite longstanding questions about USDT’s collateral, in this market “nobody actually cares if tether is backed or not,” says one Moscow trader.
- Was Tether the Unknown Bitcoin Whale Behind Monday’s $2.27 Billion Transfer? The massive $2.27 billion bitcoin transfer that occurred on Monday has led to the emergence of fanciful theories that Tether might be creating a private dark pool for future USDT issuance.
- Bitcoin’s Largest Wallet Blockchain Just Launched Its First Crypto Exchange. Bitcoin wallet and blockchain explorer provider Blockchain just launched its first custodial exchange platform, called The PIT, that can connect to non-custodial Blockchain wallets for nearly instant transfers.
- Zuckerberg Plans to Wiretap Whatsapp. He’ll Do the Same to Libra. Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook is reportedly working on a back-door content-scanner for WhatsApp, tantamount to a wiretapping algorithm. If the reports are correct, Facebook will scan your messages before you send them and report anything suspicious.
- Facebook warns investors that Libra may never see the light of day. Facebook says in the risk factors section of its latest quarterly report that it can’t guarantee Libra “will be made available in a timely manner, or at all.”
- Go Slow On Libra. Speed Up On Faster Payments. The ability to move money safely, securely, cheaply and quickly is of vital national importance. It touches everyone and every part of our economy. It should be considered a critical component of our national infrastructure, just as cash is today, and deployed in the broad public interest.
- Bitcoin Whale Transfers $468 Million for ‘Low Dollar Fee’. On Monday, Whale Alert, a cryptocurrency transaction tracking bot, tweeted that a Bitcoin whale known as ‘Unknown Owner 26’ moved $468.5 million worth of Bitcoin (49,756) for just $374.98.
- Court Declares Bitcoin Legal in China as a ‘Virtual Property’. The latest order by Hangzhou Internet Court suggests that owning bitcoin is not illegal in China as it gave the flagship cryptocurrency the status of a “virtual property.
- MFSA issues a Consultation Paper on Security Tokens Offering. The Malta Financial Services Authority issued a consultation document aimed at adopting a supervisory approach relating to Security Token Offerings, where introduced a further classification into Traditional STOs (TSTOs) and Other STOs (OSTOs) – a digital representation sharing some qualities of traditional transferable securities.
- Coinbase Is in Talks to Launch Its Own Insurance Company. Coinbase is exploring plans to set up its own “captive” insurance company. At the start of this year, insurance broker Aon began establishing captive companies in the Cayman Islands, working with a handful of cryptocurrency firms. Aon says a captive structure can help firms get access to additional coverage at more reasonable prices.
- Philippines’ UnionBank Launches Payments-Focused Stablecoin. Philippines-based UnionBank has launched a payments-focused stablecoin pegged to the Philippine peso, dubbed PHX, that is being implemented on UnionBank’s i2i platform.
- Chile-Based Remittance and Payment Firm CurrencyBird Joins RippleNet. Chile-based peer-to-peer remittance company CurrencyBird has joined RippleNet, Ripple’s global blockchain-based network of payment providers.
- Taiwan joins Asia digital banking push with three new online licenses. Taiwan issued its first virtual banking licenses to three consortiums led by Taiwan and Japanese investors, its financial authorities said on Tuesday, following moves by regulators in other Asian markets to issue such licenses.
- How regulators are working towards an enabling framework for mobile money in Vietnam. “It is evident that the government and regulatory push in Vietnam towards mobile money as a means of increasing financial inclusion and enhancing digital society is unwavering.”
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Published by kiffmeister
The Kiffmeister is a former Senior Financial Sector Expert at the International Monetary Fund.
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