Bitcoin is the first decentralized digital currency. It was created in 2009, by an anonymous founder or group of founders... turned bullish again, despite a bunch of bad news. The whole crypto market is following to an uncertain place, while we remember again that if they’re not your keys, they’re not your coins. Let’s go over this July in the A digital currency running on a blockchain and built with cryptography. Contrary to central-bank issued currency, cryptocurrency issuance rules are... More world.
On the markets
- Bitcoin (An abbreviation for Bitcoin.) increased by over 20% in the last month [CoinMarketCap]. It even passed briefly the $24,000 mark. The whole crypto market recovered $1 trillion in capitalization as well. The bigger gainers during July include Lido DAO (+400%), Optimism (+206%), Yearn Finance (+119%), Polygon (+99%), Aave (+64%), and Ethereum (+55%).
- Tesla Inc. sold most of its bitcoins and the billionaire crypto fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC) went to full bankruptcy. Apparently, the events happened at the end of June but were detailed in July. The fall of 3AC caused the bankruptcy of the crypto lenders Celsius and Voyager as well and led to millions in losses for retail investors.
- Inflation is quickly increasing globally. Around 74% of all countries currently have an inflation rate of over 5%. Even the euro (EUR) dropped to be almost in pair with the dollar (USD). Most central banks are increasing their interest rates to face inflation, with no immediate results. This has been affecting the crypto markets for a while now, and it may continue to do so.
- The DeFi industry also increased slightly, by over 3% in July [DeFiPulse]. Currently, the dominant projects are Maker, Uniswap, and Aave. On the other hand, the market for Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) is on a steep decline. The daily sales in USD dropped by 94% in July. However, the active NFT wallets increased by over 12% [NonFungible].
Regulations on crypto
- Russia ratified the law that bans crypto payments in the country, but it’s still open to foreign trades. Meanwhile, South Africa is regulating Bitcoin not as a currency, but as a “financial asset”. They’ll include tighter surveillance and requisites for crypto exchanges. In the United States, the lawmakers who own cryptocurrencies have been banned from participating in the regulation around these assets.
- The European Union finally agreed on a provisional version of their Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) law. This one will establish the rules for the use of cryptocurrencies inside their 27 member states. They focused on Bitcoin, altcoins, stablecoins, and public crypto offers (like ICOs). DeFi and NFTs were mostly left alone for now. MiCA is scheduled to come into force in 2024.
- The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) is working to set a common regulatory framework for the DeFi industry. This organization has over 233 members worldwide, and “regulates more than 95% of the world’s securities markets in more than 130 jurisdictions”. In the wake of events like Terra’s (LUNA) downfall, they want to focus on investor protection.
- Kazakhstan increased the cost of energy for Bitcoin miners by over 40% unless they’re mining with their own power sources. In Paraguay, lawmakers are creating a new regulatory group specifically to overview Bitcoin mining in the country. On the same topic, Iran lifted the ban on Bitcoin mining again, with the condition to use renewables for this activity.
Scams and security
- Around 27 DeFi platforms were attacked in July, causing losses of over $31.9 million [DeFiYield]. The most affected brands include Crema Finance on Solana (+$8.7 million), Uniswap on Ethereum (+$8 million), Teddy Doge on BSC (+$4.5 million), Nirvana Finance on Solana (+$3.5 million), and Bifrost on Ethereum (+$2.2 million). The most affected chain was BSC, with 16 attacks.
- Several centralized crypto exchanges have been exhibiting serious issues in July. It’s been calculated that over 25 crypto exchanges have closed in a month. Among them are the Spanish 2gether, with over 100,000 victims; the Asiatic AEX Global (which is being investigated by authorities), and the Singaporean Bexplus —almost considered a scam. In addition, Coinbase has been accused of selling its clients’ private data to the U.S. government.
- After years of waiting, the victims from Mt. Gox will start to receive their bitcoins back. Almost 142,000 BTC ($3.2 billion) will be A distributed system is made of components that are running on different networked computers, which communicate and coordinate their actions... More among 24,000 victims in August. If most creditors decide to sell their coins, this could cause a new drop in the price, though.
- The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) warned about fraudulent crypto investment apps. In this type of scam, the criminals lure the investors with fake promises and steal their coins through malicious apps designed by themselves. The FBI identified 244 victims with $47.7 million in losses. Among these malicious apps are YiBit and Supay.
- Cryptojacking is rising worldwide. This type of malware hijacks the energy and resources of any device to mine cryptocurrencies. The financial sector saw these attacks rising by 269% in 2022. At the same time, ransomware attacks decreased by 23% year-to-date [SonicWall].
- The Central African Republic launched its own token, Sango. Besides payments, this currency can be used to obtain citizenship in the nation, an e-residency, and even land property. They’re also planning to build a “Crypto Island” in Bangui (the country’s capital), like other Bitcoin citadels worldwide.
- The team behind Bitcoin Beach in El Salvador launched the “Basis Underlying Bitcoin Beach-Like Efforts (BUBBLEs)”. This is a new guide to replicating that kind of Bitcoin citadel anywhere in the world. Currently, similar initiatives are being launched in South Africa, Australia, Hawaii, Ecuador, and Jamaica.
- Several Bitcoin mining companies have had to temporarily turn off thousands of machines in the United States. Heat waves and summer storms are the cause of the event. The most affected states are Texas, Florida, Oklahoma, Missouri, and New Mexico. The hashrate (total Bitcoin power) decreased briefly, but it’s back to normal now [BitInfoCharts].
- Despite its recent decline, some big brands are joining the NFT world. Reddit is implementing NFTs as avatars for its users. Disney is preparing a new project of augmented reality with NFTs on Polygon; and the government of Miami (US), TIME magazine, and Mastercard are launching a new NFT collection of over 5,000 pieces with additional benefits.
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