Grayscale wins against SEC
What does this mean for the industry?
GM, frens! Ambire here with our weekly newsletter. Some things in crypto space change, but one thing remains constant: the ever-evolving nature of the industry.
Whether it's a new launch, an exciting project update, or a technical development that could redefine the way we do things, staying informed is key.
Today we’ll be talking about Grayscale and their recent lawsuit against SEC, X (formerly Twitter) acquiring a crypto license, Ben “BitBoy” Armstrong getting booted from his own brand, PEPE getting rugpulled and Binance discontinuing BUSD.
Let’s get down to it:
Grayscale wins against SEC
What does this mean for the industry?
This last Tuesday marked an important milestone for digital assets as Grayscale scored a legal victory in their efforts to offer an exchange-traded fund for spot Bitcoin.
SEC has previously rejected this application due to their concern that the so-called “spot” bitcoin market is susceptible to manipulation. But the judge has found this reasoning to be "arbitrary and capricious".
This decision could be potentially groundbreaking for the wider crypto industry as it may now open the doors to ETFs, allowing investors to get exposure to real-time bitcoin prices.
ETFs are a popular investment vehicle that offers investors several advantages, but the most important one is that they could attract a new wave of investors who would otherwise not have invested in Bitcoin / crypto directly.
Grayscale’s victory is a sign that the SEC may have to reconsider its stance on the regulation of crypto and digital assets. With this ruling, investors may soon have access to a whole new range of investment products with greater accessibility than ever before.
At the same time, it could lead to further scrutiny from regulators as they monitor the Bitcoin market for any signs of manipulation or misconduct. Regardless, this decision has put more pressure on Gary Gensler, and for the crypto community, it's a sight for sore eyes.
BTC reacted positively to the news, with prices shooting up 6% on Tuesday, which adds up to around 60% YTD. The market also sees Coinbase's stock rise 13%, further signaling a bullish sentiment in the crypto markets.
Twitter acquires crypto license
Twitter, or X as it's now called, has received the Rhode Island Currency Transmission License, allowing it to provide virtual currency-related services on behalf of its users. The license enables the storage, transfer and exchange of digital assets such as crypto within the state.
BREAKING‼️ Elon Musk’s X (Twitter) obtains license for #Bitcoin and crypto services to store, transfer, and exchange digital assets on behalf of its users. 👀
— Bitcoin Archive (@BTC_Archive)
Aug 29, 2023
This comes after the company announced its plans to become a payment company and expand its involvement in the crypto space. It began partnering with Strike, a Bitcoin payment app, allowing users to send and receive Bitcoin tips. Twitter also added support for displaying Bitcoin and Ethereum addresses in user profiles.
The license will enable the company to provide more services related to crypto, but what they are remains unclear. It could be as small as enabling users to send and receive funds or as big as launching some sort of crypto exchange.
BitBoy gets booted from his own brand
Crypto influencer and youtuber Ben "Bitboy" Armstrong was fired from Bitboy Crypto, a brand he himself created, as legal action has been taken to remove him from the brand. Announced on August 28th by BJ Investment Holdings (the parent company of Hit Network), the company stated that this decision was made after a “culmination of prolonged effort” in helping Armstrong during his substance abuse relapse.
Yesterday, BJ Investment Holdings, the parent company of Hit network, took decisive legal action in removing Ben Armstrong from the company, and specifically the Bitboy Crypto brand.
— Bitboy Crypto (@Bitboy_Crypto)
Aug 28, 2023
The announcement caused a lot of discussion among the crypto community, with many users expressing their support for Armstrong and worrying about what this could mean for Bitboy Crypto. There were also speculations that the termination was related to Armstrong's previous entanglements, such as promoting FTX while not disclosing his compensation agreements.
This is Ben.
TJ Shedd & Justin Williams have attempted a coup at my company.
Just confirming what is going around. It’s true. There has been a mutiny at BitBoy Crypto & Hit Network. But it won’t work. They have no leverage
Until they can clone me, I have nothing to worry about
— $BEN (@joinBENCoin)
Aug 27, 2023
Armstrong denied these allegations and defended himself on Twitter. He also stated, "I'm coming for your license, sir. Relentlessly. You made a big mistake. And you will pay for it."
Well, whether those accusations are true or not, it's clear that the Bitboy Crypto brand is going through a difficult transition that it might not recover from. As always, if you’re in crypto, you won’t ever need another TV soap opera again.
PEPE memecoin gets rug-pulled
Memecoin runs often end up in a tragedy, especially those that do not have an underlying utility, and it seems that PEPE turned out to be one of those coins.
Twitter users reported that the team had changed the multisig wallet approval threshold to two signatures out of eight, and then transferred 16 trillion PEPE ($15.6 million) to externally owned addresses.
@Crypto_Noddy TLDR: They transferred out $15.6M worth of PEPE from the multisig to an EOA address. That address started depositing the funds to exchanges.
Then they changed the number of signers on the multisig from 5 -> 2 suddenly (bad security choice).
— ZachXBT (@zachxbt)
Aug 24, 2023
This raised concerns among investors about a potentially malicious rug pull, as the funds formed more than half of the 6.9% vested tokens that were meant to be used to maintain liquidity in the ecosystem.
There was no announcement from the team prior to this move, and following the transactions, the multisig wallet was left with 10.7 trillion PEPE ($10.5 million).
The PEPE team made efforts to address the concerns of investors by explaining that these transactions were the result of disgruntled team members misusing their access. However, it appears that there was another team member who still had access to the token and Twitter account and apparently, they had the best interests of PEPE investors in mind.
an announcement to the $PEPE community:
Yesterday on August 24th, 2023, a series of unexpected transactions took place from the $PEPE multisig CEX
Wallet in which ~16 Trillion $PEPE tokens (worth roughly $15m USD) were transferred to various crypto exchanges (OKX, Binance,… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
— Pepe (@pepecoineth)
Aug 26, 2023
Whether that's actually the case or not, one can't say this was unexpected. Memecoins are truly a blessing and a curse for the DeFi space at the same time.
Binance discontinues BUSD. Is a new stablecoin in sight?
Binance is reducing the support for their once-popular Binance USD (BUSD) stablecoin, citing Paxos’s end of new token minting. In particular, Binance is planning to suspend all BUSD spot and margin trading pairs, as well as Cross Margin borrowings from September 7, 2023.
#binance discontinuing BUSD support: here are the details 🧵
— Bit Explorer 🌟 (@bit_explor30429)
Aug 31, 2023
The CEX has also announced the eventual delisting of BUSD spot and margin trading pairs in addition to withdrawals of BUSD tokens across select networks like Avalanche, Polygon, and Tron. A provision for users to transition their BUSD to FDUSD manually is also in place.
BUSD is also not going to be a loanable asset on the platform from September 6, 2023. Binance Gift Cards will cease offering BUSD by the end of September too, and merchants integrated with Binance Pay will have to deactivate it as an order currency by the same date.
So, does this mean a different stablecoin is in the works? Binance has not yet revealed whether they have any plans for a replacement. But considering the size of the exchange, a new stablecoin could prove to be an attractive option for some traders.
Other worthy reads:
Some interesting stats from AllianceDAO:
Due to the sheer number of applications Alliance receives, we have a strong sense of what’s happening in crypto.
We’ve shared this alpha with Demo Day attendees in the past. Today, for the first time, we’re doing it publicly 🧵👇
— Alliance (@alliancedao)
Aug 29, 2023
Some data suggests Unibot trading accounts for 2% of Uniswap volume, big implications for the market:
Fun fact - @TeamUnibot is doing >2% of Uniswap volume.
One interesting metric to notice is 70% volume is by random shitcoins and only 30% by UNIBOT, RLB, BITCOIN token trading.
Was expecting more centralization tbh.
IMO this is an indication of an early shitcoin dominated… htttwitter.com/i/web/status/1…
— Hamzah Khan (@_khanhamzah)
Aug 26, 2023
Important 2023 stablecoin stats:
"The Relentless Rise of Stablecoins" is the result of hundreds of hours of onchain stablecoin analysis.
Download here: lnkd.in/gz7QBdjJ
Top 10 takeaways below.
— Peter Johnson (@TheChicagoVC)
Aug 22, 2023
The fun page
People with 0.00007 Bitcoin seeing this
— Alan Carroll (@alancarroII)
Aug 30, 2023
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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