ARK Invest applies for spot Ethereum ETF

The space gets more bullish every week!

GM, frens! Ambire here with our weekly newsletter, today we’ll talk about ARK Investing applying for spot ETH ETF, discuss the top 5 hacks of 2023 (so far), JP Morgan developing blockchain-based international payment platform, Kraken introducing PayPal deposits in UK and EU and VISA launching stables payments on Solana. Let’s get down to it:

ARK Invest applies for spot Ethereum ETF

ARK Invest, a leading investment management firm, has applied to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for approval of an Ethereum Spot ETF. This will be the first such product in the US, allowing investors to gain exposure to the fast-growing Ethereum market without owning ETH directly.

The fund, which is called the ARK 21Shares Ethereum ETF, is being launched in partnership with 21Shares, a provider of exchange-traded funds. It will track the performance of ETH, Ethereum's native cryptocurrency, against the CME CF Ether-Dollar Reference Rate – New York Variant, an index that aggregates trade flow from selected major ETH spot exchanges.

ARK Invest has been chosen to be the sub-advisor for this ETF and will help market it. The ETF will trade on the Cboe BZX Exchange and have a fee of 0.95%. It only invests directly in ETH, thus avoiding derivatives or other non-ETH instruments.

The SEC is expected to approve this and other applications for Ethereum Spot ETFs in the near future, allowing investors to access the Ethereum market more easily. This could potentially catalyze growth in the ETH market, bringing more investors and increasing liquidity. Thus it is an exciting development that could continue to drive Ethereum's value higher.

Given the solid fundamentals of Ethereum, its steady rise in price, and the potential for further upside with these new investment products now available, many are bullish on both short-term and long-term prospects for ETH, especially now, that the ETF meta is heating up.

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Top 5 crypto hacks of 2023

2023 has been a good year for those who engage in malicious activities as crypto hacks have seen a massive surge. In total, hackers have managed to steal over $620 million from unsuspecting victims. Here is a look at the top 5 hacks of 2023 so far.

  1. Euler Finance - ~$200 Million: In March, the year witnessed a major hacking incident where an attacker successfully siphoned nearly $197 million by exploiting a vulnerability in Euler's donate function contract. This incident stands out as the top security breach of the year. In a lucky break for Euler, the perpetrator has returned the money after prolonged back and forth negotiations.

  1. Multichain - $126 Million: Cross-chain bridge protocol Multichain was subjected to a hack on July 6, resulting in losses of more than $125 million, with some suggesting the bridge was deliberately "rugged".

  2. Atomic Wallet - $100 Million: In June, an estimated $100 million worth of crypto was stolen from Atomic wallet users by a hacker. The incident has been linked to the North Korea Lazarus hacker group, which uses crypto heists to fund North Korean nuclear weapons program. But the hack also served as an important lesson to crypto devs regarding the importance of security, since the wallets and passwords were allegedly kept on a 3rd party server with no encryption.

  1. Curve Finance - $61.7 Million: Curve Finance was bombarded with hacks on July 30, resulting in hackers taking away $61 million from various trading pools. As news of the vulnerability spread, further exploitation occurred in quick succession. The news of the exploit spread quickly through social media, attracting the worst people possible.

  1. - $41.3 Million:, the leading online casino and sports betting platform in the world of crypto, fell victim to a hacking incident on September 4. As a consequence, approximately $41 million worth of funds were unfortunately lost.

In this space, it is definitely not a surprise to see a hack every now and then, especially as crypto gets more popular and attractive.

Undoubtedly, deep down, we have always been aware that the power to create our own smart contracts or dApps comes with inherent risks. However, it is undeniable that decentralization is a force that is here to stay, along with the unique challenges it presents.

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JP Morgan is developing blockchain-based int. payment platform

Bloomberg is reporting that JP Morgan Chase & Co., the biggest bank in the US, is exploring a new digital currency that would speed up international payments and settlements.

According to one of Bloomberg’s anonymous sources, JP Morgan is looking into using a blockchain-based deposit token that will act as a transferable digital currency representing a claim against the bank. The source said JP Morgan has already developed much of the necessary infrastructure for this project, but will only roll it out if approved by US regulators.

This venture is part of JP Morgan's blockchain push, which already includes the JPM Coin system that allows certain institutional clients to transfer dollars and euros within the bank. According to their website, they have processed about $300 billion in transactions using JPM Coin since its launch in 2019.

The new platform will use blockchain technology to allow instant payments, and reduce transaction costs by eliminating the need for intermediaries such as clearinghouses or counterpart banks. Furthermore, it is expected that this system will provide greater security and transparency in international transfers.

Crypto to the rescue?

As the world continues to move towards digital-first payment systems, these new blockchain-based platform is just one of many future solutions that could help revolutionize the way payments are made around the globe.

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Kraken introduces PayPal deposits in UK and EU

Kraken, one of the largest crypto exchanges in the world, is making it easier for users to buy and sell crypto with PayPal. The exchange has now enabled PayPal deposits for UK and EU customers, allowing them to fund their accounts instantly.

Users can transfer up to £1000 ($1250) every day through PayPal with a 2.4% fee. Kraken mobile app users will need to update their app to access the new PayPal deposits feature. However, there is no integration with Kraken's web platform yet, so users will have to use the mobile app for now.

This move by Kraken makes it much easier and faster for customers in the UK and EU to buy crypto.

That's a big deal for crypto, since only a few years ago, buying crypto was a long and cumbersome process. Now, with PayPal integrated into Kraken's platform, customers can have their funds ready to go within seconds. This will hopefully encourage more people to adopt crypto as an investment option and increase the trading volume.

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VISA launches stables payments on Solana

Another news from giants of the industry. After announcing its expansion to stablecoin settlement services on Solana, VISA is now in a pilot phase to test the capabilities of the program. With the acquisition of Worldpay and Nuvei, VISA aimed to enable enterprise-grade throughput and low transaction costs by adding blockchain capabilities on Solana.

Their choice to go with Solana isn't entirely clear. The chain has had some issues with uptime, and the recent crypto winter has hit it hard - with a 16% decline in the last 30 days and a 12% drop in circulating market cap. This has led some in the community to wonder if Solana had to sweeten the deal to make the list.

But VISA's stance is clear: that Solana might be a good fit for their needs. VISA's Head of Crypto, Cuy Sheffield, believes this technology could improve legacy payment systems and increase customer satisfaction.

It's true that 80s software running on mainframes just can't keep up with the demands of modern users. Bringing bank transfers from days to seconds, days to minutes, and hours to seconds would be an amazing accomplishment for the old industry, but it's too soon to tell if this will happen. For now, VISA's focus is on the transport layer of payments - a huge challenge that could take years to solve.

It's also worth mentioning that VISA is not the only major company looking to integrate blockchain tech. From Mastercard to PayPal, big businesses are looking for ways to improve their payment systems. The key takeaway here is that blockchain technology is slowly becoming more mainstream and will have a significant impact on the financial services industry in the near future.

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Other worthy reads

Entertaining interview with TradeJoe’s founder:

Justice finally catches up with FTX’s Ryan Salame:

Thoughts on BTC ETF from Tom Dunleavy (could this also apply to ETH ETF? 🤔 ):

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The fun page

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That's all for now, frens.

We'll see you next week. And remember, the market conditions are temporary, but our commitment to building a better DeFi is here to stay. Thanks for joining us, and we look forward to seeing you back next week. Cheers!

Yours, The 🔥 Team

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