Značka: Cryptocurrencies

Hiring top crypto talent can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be

Building a career or constructing a team in decentralized finance (DeFi) and crypto relies on finding talent, skills and the right attitude anywhere, in anyone. While this is no different than other industries, what makes ours unique are the much-needed, specialized skill sets combined with finding a good culture fit in an international and remote setting.Despite recent turbulence in markets, crypto companies continue building and growing. The increased energy and legitimacy in the industry over the years has many people wanting to make the switch from Web2 to Web3. This requires recruiters to sift through hundreds of applicants every month, but how do you find the right people who are enthusiastic about the ethos of the industry and excited to build impactful technology? Here are a few recruiting strategies that can help and a couple of things to avoid.Hire for attitudeNo matter the industry, the right attitude can go a long way. Work in crypto and DeFi is often international, remote, fast-moving and non-traditional. Its nature is decentralized, so work environments tend to be the same.We lean into hiring people who are kind, team-oriented, self-directed, energetic, innovative and deal with mistakes and challenges in the right way. But how do you identify those habits and the right attitude in someone during the hiring process?There are a few ways to do this. Ask them what they value. What do they find important in terms of culture, teamwork and others’ attitudes?To drive at these responses, it can help to ask the candidate the same question in a few different ways and then measure for sincerity. If they keep coming back to topics or statements that feel genuine, then they probably are. If they haven’t thought of what values and cultural elements they look for in their next team, that could be a red flag.It is also helpful to dig into how candidates plan to succeed in a remote and international setting. (Our team has people in nearly a dozen different countries around the world.) How have they managed with diverse time zones? What is their attitude around being flexible for other teammates’ work/life boundaries? We’ve learned that successful remote work requires people with attitudes that embrace flexibility and understand how to self-direct with asynchronous communication.Related: How to get a job in the metaverse and Web3Maintain a deeply thorough interview processWe’ve been told many times that our interview process is one of the most deliberate and in-depth recruiting processes candidates have experienced. It’s common for a candidate to speak to up to four current members of the team during the interview process. It’s not meant to be grueling; it’s meant to be explorative, transparent and helpful — to both sides.This process is by design. Several conversations, practice scenarios, exercises and touchpoints that involve several current team members create more opportunities to get to know each other. The more you talk, the more you can identify strengths, weaknesses, motivations and attitudes. Formal education hasn’t yet caught up to crypto, so it’s challenging to assess educational and professional experience the same way you can in some traditional industries. This process needs to give people equal opportunity to showcase their skillsets, culture fit and talents.Our experience building a remote, global team has proven that hiring requires transparency and respect. The process is a two-way street. You’re choosing each other. If the candidate ends up choosing another role because your process is too involved or lengthy, then so be it. Related: Bear market: Some crypto firms cut jobs, while others aim for sustainable growthIt’s important to maintain these intentional, strategic and thorough processes consistently. Hiring the wrong person carries a larger cost than hiring the right person, slowly.Don’t hire out of desperationWhile the industry feels like it’s in constant flux and growth can happen suddenly and quickly, resist the urge to hire for the sake of growth alone. It’s tempting to lower your hiring bar when talent is hard to find, but success emerges when you keep expectations high. As mentioned above, a thorough process of interviewing and recruiting will pay off down the road by securing the right people for the right reasons. Having a position vacant is better than having the wrong person in the position for a brief time.Pursue diversity (in all its forms)Crypto and DeFi are improving from a diversity perspective, but it still has a long way to go, particularly in science-, technology-, engineering- and mathematics-based roles. Any visit to a crypto or DeFi event or conference shows that participation is heavily weighted toward white men. This is holding back our organizations, communities and industry.Teams that are more diverse are stronger. Teams with more women, more people of color, more people of various geographic or national backgrounds and sexual or gender orientations will achieve more innovation, understanding, productivity and longevity. A diverse team will cultivate a diverse ecosystem of ideas and achievements.This requires developing strong cultures and policies that are inclusive, supportive, professional and open-minded and practice zero tolerance for prejudice or discrimination in both organizational and community behavior.The benefit of having a remote-first company is that you can hire anyone, anywhere. So, take advantage of that but be sensitive to how your team and industry may be felt and experienced by others with their own unique experiences.Related: New industry, new rules: Building the metaverse without biasTo achieve this, start with policies and philosophies that are inviting and inclusive. Then you need to think outside the box to find diverse candidate pools. For example, look forwomen-led decentralized autonomous organizations, hackathons or Twitter communities, and be a champion where you can for underrepresented groups in the industry. If you can’t find them, help to build them.Don’t shy away from people who are unfamiliar with cryptoCrypto and DeFi are obviously highly complicated industries that require specialized skill sets. But that doesn’t mean organizations should restrict themselves to recruits who are already familiar with crypto or active in it.There are plenty of highly skilled Web2 people involving themselves in crypto as their hobby. Search for meaningful contributors, self-starters and those willing to learn. That’s what this industry is all about. With the right attitude and ethos, blockchain and crypto knowledge can be learned. Seek to embrace things such as paired programming, internal learning sessions and frequent performance reviews to continually develop talent.While early weeks and months can and will feel overwhelming to non-crypto recruits, people with the right attitude and objectives will learn, especially if they are being mentored and guided by a welcoming, understanding and strategic team. Patience is a virtue. (Engaging with non-crypto folks will also nurture diversity.)The industry has grown so fast over the last five years that the talent pool criteria will have to expand, or else we will run out of options, especially in the bear market that we now find ourselves in.This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.Melissa Quinn is the chief operating officer of Risk Labs, the foundation and team behind Uma, Across and Outcome.Finance. Melissa comes from a background in human resources and shifted into the operations side of crypto and DeFi in 2017. Since then, she has helped to build and lead teams through various market cycles. Melissa joined Risk Labs in late 2020 and has guided the team as it tripled in size in a short period of time without compromising on culture, values, diversity and collaboration.

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Bitcoin trader says expect more chop, downside, then sideways price action for BTC this summer

Discussion of the state of the crypto market has been a dominant headline over the past few weeks as non-crypto native media excoriate Bitcoin (BTC) and DeFi investors for investing in assets with no fundamental value. At the same time, crypto-savvy analysts and traders have been pouring over charts, looking for clues that signal when the market will bottom and reverse course.Novice investors are clearly nervous and a few have predicted the demise of the burgeoning asset class, but for those that have been around for multiple cycles, this new bear market is just another forest clearing fire that will eventually lead to a healthier ecosystem. The next steps for the crypto market was a topic discussed in depth with Cointelegraph contributor Crypto Jebb and independent market analyst Scott Melker. The pair chatted about their views on why the value proposition for Bitcoin remains strong and what the price action for the top cryptocurrency could look like moving forward. [embedded content]Here’s a look at some of the key points discussed by Crypto Jebb and Melker. Bitcoin is being used as it was originally intendedTraders are primarily focused on Bitcoin’s spot price and lamenting the fact that it is not performing as the inflation hedge that many promised it would be, but Melker pointed out that its performance largely depends on the country and economic state of where an individual lives. Bitcoin may be down significantly in terms of U.S. dollars, but when compared to countries like Venezuela that are experiencing hyperinflation, or Nigeria, which has a large unbanked population, BTC has offered people a way to preserve the value of their money and transact in an open financial system. One of the biggest functions highlighted by Melker is that Bitcoin is the first real asset that has given people around the world the ability to opt out of the current financial system if it’s not working for them. According to Crypto Jebb, Bitcoin is thermodynamically sound, meaning he defined as the asset holding on to the energy that is put into the system and that it doesn’t “leak” it out through things like inflation. What direction will the market take?Regarding the market’s future, Melker made sure to emphasize that while it may not seem like crypto adoption is moving fast to those who have been in the market for years, “the adoption of Bitcoin is faster than the internet. It’s a hockey stick curve that is absolutely going parabolic.” Both Crypto Jebb and Melker suggested that the paradigm shift toward investing in cryptocurrencies just needs more time because people who have been conditioned to invest in things like a 401k or Roth IRA and most investors are trained to fear risk.In response to possible critics who would cite Bitcoin’s volatility as a core reason to avoid cryptocurrencies, Melker highlighted the struggles that equities markets have had lately, citing the poor performance of stocks like Netflix, Facebook, PayPal and Cathie Woods’s ARK funds. Melker said, “Last month was the first time I believe I saw research from Messari that said there wasn’t a single place that you could have basically put money in an asset class and stored any sort of value. And if you stayed in cash, you lost 8% of your buying power doing that.”Related: Deutsche Bank analysts see Bitcoin recovering to $28K by DecemberExpect more downside over the short-termAccording to Melker, the current condition of the market is poor and in the short-term, it’s important to remember that “the trend is your friend” and that further downside is likely. That being said, Melker indicated that there are some developments coming up that could help the market out of its lull, including the Fed tightening cycle which has historically put pressure on asset prices for the first three quarters of the tightening cycle until the market adjusts to the new reality. Melker said, “My best guess is that we have a very choppy, boring low-volume, low liquidity summer. Maybe we put in new lows, or maybe we just chop around from $17.5K to $22K or $23K, something like that. And then we really start to see what the market is made of coming into the end of the year.” Don’t miss the full interview on our YouTube channel and don’t forget to subscribe!The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Self-custody is key during extreme market conditions: Here's what experts say

The ongoing crisis of cryptocurrency lending and the associated crypto market decline once again confirms the importance of self-custody or the “true ownership” of crypto by its holder, according to several industry experts.In June, the cryptocurrency market capitalization plummeted below the $1 trillion mark, with Bitcoin (BTC) nearing its worst monthly losses since 2011. It remains to be seen whether crypto lending would survive the current crypto winter. Still, several industry executives agree that investors can protect their assets forever by simply moving them to self-custodial or noncustodial wallets.It’s crucial to remember that crypto financial services providers like Celsius or Babel are centralized finance (CeFi) platforms, as opposed to decentralized finance (DeFi) applications, according to Yves Longchamp, head of research at the Swiss crypto bank Seba.“Based on this evidence, CeFi platforms need to be better regulated with a focus on risk management. It is difficult to regulate DeFi as you cannot put a smart contract in jail, or simply close a DeFi application,” Longchamp said in a statement to Cointelegraph on Wednesday.One way to regulate the overall crypto market is to regulate the crypto user in the first place by providing education and investor protection tools along with reliable products from an independent source, the executive said, adding:“In the spirit of blockchain, self-administration is key: crypto holders should own their coins in non-custodial wallets. If a user is to make smart decisions they need to be well-informed on the risks they are undertaking.”Longchamp also argued that algorithmic stablecoins like TerraUSD (UST) are “unstable” and “should be avoided.” CeFi should focus on transparent asset-backed stablecoins, he said.According to Brian Norton, chief operating officer at MyEtherWallet, crypto investors now have enough tools to realize that they do not have to rely exclusively on CeFi to make trades and mitigate risks.Norton noted that crypto winters provide time and opportunity for people to learn how self-custody is done, adding:“If you are relying exclusively on centralized platforms, even when the yields are great, you’re still giving up a good deal of control over your digital assets. […] Self-custody is what crypto was built for, and what we are seeing right now is not unusual.”Crypto self-custody is about letting consumers fully control their keys and the fate of their crypto, according to Adam Lowe, chief product and innovation officer at the Arculus crypto wallet.Related: Noncustodial Bitcoin wallets unbannable, says exec behind Trezor wallets“Self-sovereignty supports balance and self-regulation, and is beneficial to the entire digital asset ecosystem,” Lowe said in a statement to Cointelegraph.

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Deutsche Bank analysts see Bitcoin recovering to $28K by December

Analysts from Deutsche Bank forecast Bitcoin (BTC) rebounding to $28,000 by December 2022 as the cryptocurrency market continues to grapple with gloomy times.Bitcoin and the wider cryptocurrency markets have endured a tough six months, with the value of BTC, in particular, enduring its worst quarter in 10 years. Macroeconomic conditions around the world have played a role, with stagnating markets and fears of inflation driving conventional stock markets and their crypto-counterparts down to painful lows.A report from Deutsche Bank analysts Marion Laboure and Galina Pozdnyakova provides an interesting perspective on the medium-term outlook for BTC. Their insights suggest that cryptocurrency markets have mirrored movements of the Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 since late 2021.The pair believe that the S&P will rebound to its January levels and that Bitcoin’s correlation to the index could result in a 30% increase in value from current levels midway through 2022. This would see BTC back up to the $28,000 mark.Related: Better days ahead with crypto deleveraging coming to an end — JPMorganThe prediction may quell some of the fear and uncertainty swirling in the space, but the recovery of cryptocurrency markets is not so clear cut. Laboure and Pozdnyakova highlighted the recent collapse of the Terra ecosystem and the Celsius debacle and their influence on markets as exacerbating factors:“Stabilizing token prices is hard because there are no common valuation models like those within the public equity system. In addition, the crypto market is highly fragmented. The crypto freefall could continue because of the system’s complexity.”A separate investor note from JPMorgan suggests that the crypto ecosystem may already be in recovery. While firms like hedge fund Three Arrows Capital became insolvent after failing to meet margin calls from investors amid the crypto market crash, other industry players have propped up the ecosystem:“The current deleveraging cycle may not be very protracted given the fact that crypto entities with the stronger balance sheets are currently stepping in to help contain contagion and that venture-capital funding, an important source of capital for the crypto ecosystem, continued at a healthy pace in May and June.”The note also highlighted the relatively healthy amount of venture capital investment into cryptocurrency firms over the past two months — to the tune of $5 billion. This represents a $3.4 billion increase from the same period in 2021.

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Not giving up: VanEck refiles with SEC for spot Bitcoin ETF

VanEck, one of the first firms in the world to ever file for a Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF), is not giving up on its plans to launch a spot Bitcoin ETF in the United States.The firm has refiled an application for a physically-backed Bitcoin ETF with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).Filed on June 24, VanEck’s latest Bitcoin ETF application comes months after the SEC rejected its previous spot Bitcoin ETF request on Nov. 12, 2021. The securities regulator based its decision on the ETF on its alleged inability to meet standards to protect investors and the public interest as well as to “prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices.”In the latest filing, VanEck provided a wide number of reasons for the SEC to approve a Bitcoin ETF this time.The ETF company argued that the lack of a U.S.-listed spot Bitcoin exchange-traded products (ETP) does not prevent U.S. funds from gaining exposure to Bitcoin. That is because many U.S. ETPs use Canadian BTC ETPs to gain exposure to spot BTC, VanEck argued, stating:“Approving this proposal — and others like it — would provide U.S. ETFs and mutual funds with a U.S.-listed and regulated products to provide such access rather than relying on either flawed products or products listed and primarily regulated in other countries.”As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Canada was one of the first countries in the world to debut a spot Bitcoin ETF with the launch of the Purpose Bitcoin ETF in February 2021.VanEck went on to say that approving a spot Bitcoin ETF would be a logical step for the SEC after the authority decided to allow Bitcoin futures-based ETFs. As previously reported, VanEck’s BTC futures ETF started trading on the Chicago Board Options Exchange on Nov. 16, 2021.“After issuing the Bitcoin futures approvals which conclude the CME Bitcoin futures market is a regulated market […] the only consistent outcome would be approving spot Bitcoin ETPs on the basis that the Bitcoin futures market is also a regulated market of significant size as it relates to the Bitcoin spot market,” the new filing reads.Related: Grayscale’s legal challenge to SEC sparks response from the communityAccording to Bloomberg ETF analyst Henry Jim, the deadline for VanEck’s latest spot Bitcoin ETF is March 3, 2023.Van Eck tries spot #Bitcoin ETF againCboe re-files 19b-4 for the VanEck Bitcoin Trust, a spot Bitcoin ETF, after it was disapproved last NovSEC has not “noticed” this filing yet.Final deadline: Mar 3, 2023MVIS® CryptoCompare Bitcoin Benchmark Ratehttps://t.co/mTJF14okCy https://t.co/5ckwIiOJFT pic.twitter.com/7xpPkBTuic— ETF Hearsay by Henry Jim (@ETFhearsay) June 30, 2022VanEck is known as one of the first U.S. firms to ever file for a Bitcoin futures ETF. The company originally filed for a physically-backed Bitcoin ETF in June 2018 but the SEC repeatedly postponed its decision over the proposal to eventually reject it three years later.

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US lawmakers say crypto industry has a 'tech bro' problem hurting innovation

According to some United States lawmakers in the House Financial Services Committee, the lack of diversity in the financial technology space could be hurting many companies’ bottom lines.In a Thursday virtual hearing on “Combatting Tech Bro Culture,” U.S. lawmakers and witnesses discussed how women and people of color were underrepresented in leadership positions in the financial technology industry, including crypto firms. Massachusetts Representative Stephen Lynch cited data that only 2% of venture capital funding went to firms in which the founders were women, while only 1% went to those with black founders, and 1.8% for Latinx. According to Lynch and some on the committee, this trend suggested an “old boys club” culture in companies including those involved with cryptocurrencies, in which many of those in leadership positions were white men. They claimed that many firms seemingly less deserving of funding were able to bring in money more easily due in part to relationships between leadership.“While lack of diversity is a trend in almost every industry that venture capitalists invest in, it is particularly troubling in the fintech space,” said Lynch. “The largest fintechs, including digital banks, payment processors, and cryptocurrency providers, actually market their products to women and people of color. Yet when we look at the founders and leadership teams, they clearly do not reflect the communities that they claim to serve.”Representative Stephen Lynch addressing the House Financial Services Committee“Multiple studies found that companies with diverse leadership, specifically with more than one gender and/or one race, are ethically representative, are more innovative and make more money,” said California Representative Maxine Waters. “I assume that venture capital firms are heavily profit driven, but it seems they’re ignoring clear data on how to boost those profits.”Related: Crypto innovators of color restricted by the rules aimed to protect themLynch cited the recent crisis around crypto lending platform Celsius — whose leadership team consists mostly of men — as an example of VC money not necessarily going to where it’s best utilized:“Venture capital firms continue to gamble on poor investments such as cryptocurrency companies like Celsius, which recently froze all customer deposits, while on the other hand women and founders of color with well thought out, substantive business plans remain in the waiting room.”

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Analysts identify 3 critical flaws that brought DeFi down

The cryptocurrency market has had a rough go this year and the collapse of multiple projects and funds sparked a contagion effect that has affected just about everyone in the space. The dust has yet to settle, but a steady flow of details is allowing investors to piece together a picture that highlights the systemic risks of decentralized finance and poor risk management.Here’s a look at what several experts are saying about the reasons behind the DeFi crash and their perspectives on what needs to be done for the sector to make a comeback. Failure to generate sustainable revenueOne of the most frequently cited reasons for DeFi protocols struggling is their inability to generate sustainable income that adds meaningful value to the platform’s ecosystem. Fundamental Design Principles for DeFi:- If the protocol doesn’t work without a reward token, it’s a Ponzi schemeA reward token should not be necessary for a protocol to function. That means the protocol is not a revenue generating business.— Joseph Delong* (@josephdelong) May 23, 2022In their attempt to attract users, high yields were offered at an unsustainable rate, while there was insufficient inflow to offset payouts and provide underlying value for the platform’s native token. This essentially means that there was no real value backing the token, which was used to payout the high yields offered to users. As users began to realize that their assets weren’t really earning the yields they were promised, they would remove their liquidity and sell the reward tokens. This, in turn, caused a decline in the token price, along with a drop in the total value locked (TVL), which further incited panic for users of the protocol who would likewise pull their liquidity and lock in the value of any rewards received. Tokenomics or Ponzinomics?A second flaw highlighted by multiple experts is the poorly designed tokenomic structure of many DeFi protocols that often have an extremely high inflation rate which was used to lure liquidity.High rewards are nice, but if the value of the token being paid out as a reward isn’t really there, then users are basically taking a lot of risk by relinquishing control of their funds for little to no reward. This largely ties in with DeFi’s revenue generation issue, and the inability to build sustainable treasuries. High inflation increases token supply, and if token value is not maintained, liquidity leaves the ecosystem.Related: Bear market will last until crypto apps are actually useful: Mark CubanOverleveraged usersThe overuse of leverage is another endemic DeFi problem and this flaw became crystal clear as Celsius, 3AC and other platforms invested in DeFi began to unravel last month.Users who staked these inflationary tokens to over-leverage their positions got liquidated as prices dipped due to market sell-offs.This led to a death spiral for the protocol. @Wonderland_fi is one such protocol where users leveraged $TIME to borrow $MIM and got liquidated— Magik Invest ✨ (@magikinvestxyz) June 28, 2022

These liquidations only exasperated the downtrend that many tokens were already experiencing, triggering a death spiral that spread to CeFi and DeFi platforms and a few centralized crypto exchanges.In this sense, the onus really falls on the users for being over-leveraged without a solid game plan on what to do in the eventuality of a market downturn. While it can be a challenge to think about these things during the height of a bull market, it should always be something in the back of a trader’s mind because the cryptocurrency ecosystem is well known for its whipsaw volatility. The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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'Cryptoqueen' Ruja Ignatova makes FBI's Ten Most Wanted list

“Crypto” is often used as an honorific inside the community. United States Securities and Exchange Commission member Hester Peirce is called Crypto Mom for her steadfast support for digital assets, and Time magazine crowned Vitalik Buterin the Prince of Crypto. When Ruja Ignatova was given the title “Cryptoqueen” in a 2019 true-crime podcast, however, it was with far less endearment. Ignatova was the creator of OneCoin, a purported cryptocurrency that proved to be a Ponzi scheme. According to law enforcement, her OneCoin Ltd. has defrauded more than 3 million investors of more than $4 billion since 2014. Her company has also been accused of bribing the presidents of Serbia and Bulgaria, among other things.Now Ignatova can add “most wanted” to her titular stylings, thanks to the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which placed her on its top-ten list Thursday and will pay up to $100,000 for information leading to her arrest. According to the FBI, Ignatova was last known to be in Athens. That was in 2017. There will be a press conference today at 11am at 26 Federal Plaza to announce the addition of Ruja Ignatova, a.k.a. ‘Cryptoqueen’, to the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list for allegedly defrauding investors of more than $4 billion through the OneCoin cryptocurrency company— US Attorney SDNY (@SDNYnews) June 30, 2022Ignatova recently counted among Europol’s most wanted as well, although she is no longer on that list.Related: Is education the key to curbing the rise of scammy, high-APY projects?Ignatova grew up in Germany and holds a Ph.D. in economics. In her heyday, the ethnic Bulgarian was known for her elegant attire and fancy parties. She attracted a crowd of over 3,000 to Wembley Arena in London to hear her speak in 2016, even though suspicions about her activities were already common knowledge by that time. Since then, OneCoin has been the subject of a class-action suit, and her brother and associates have been brought to trial. The world has taken note of the drama inherent in the case. Kate Winslet is reportedly involved in a film based on the experiences of a OneCoin investor. Variety reports that a deal has been made on a three-part documentary about Ignatova as well.

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FTX on the verge of purchasing BlockFi in $25M fire sale: Report

Cryptocurrency exchange FTX is close to purchasing digital asset lender BlockFi’s remaining assets for $25 million, according to CNBC.According to sources close to the matter, BlockFi’s equity investors were wiped out and are now writing their positions off at a loss. In addition, the FTX deal could take multiple months to close, opening up the possibility that the price tag could shift over that period. In June 2021, BlockFi had a reported valuation of $5 billion.Earlier this year, BlockFi had over 1 million clients, over $10 billion in assets and deposits, and had distributed more than $700 million in crypto rewards and interest. However, BlockFi’s fortunes quickly soured after it reportedly became a major creditor of the now troubled hedge fund Three Arrow Capital, also known as 3AC. As a result, it was forced to liquidate 3AC’s positions amounting to $1.33 billion, likely at a severe loss as the bear market intensified in June. The situation was exacerbated by 3AC posting collateral for the loan in $400 million worth of Grayscale Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) shares, which often trade at a discount or premium to spot Bitcoin (BTC) prices. At the time of liquidation, GBTC shares were trading at a 34% discount to the net asset value of its Bitcoin holdings, which plunged further as BlockFi began closing the position.Related: FTX may be planning to purchase a stake in BlockFiEarlier this month, BlockFi said it would fire 20% of its 850-strong staff due to profitability woes in the short term. Just last week, FTX had extended a $250 million line of credit to BlockFi and denied rumors that it was acquiring the ill-fortuned firm. 

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Traders debate whether Solana (SOL) is a buy now that it’s down 87% from its all-time high

The crypto sector is caught in a deep correction and recent reporting shows that a majority of altcoins are more than 70% down from their 2021 highs. Solana is among that list and investors are on the fence about whether the token has strong enough fundamentals to warrant buying SOL at its current value. Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView shows SOL is down 87.5% from its all-time high and given the current state of the market, most price breakouts fail to notch a daily higher high.SOL/USDT 1-day chart. Source: TradingViewDespite, the dismal outlook, there are a few potential positives that could make Solana a project to watch once the wider market enters a consolidation phase.Solana MobileSOL price received a quick boost late last week after a June 23 announcement that the project would release a Solana mobile stack which enables native Android Web3 apps on Solana. To go along with the new operating interface for smartphones, Solana also revealed that it will be releasing its own “Saga” Android phone through Solana Mobile in an effort to lead the way on Web3-enabled devices. Web3 and the Metaverse are two of the topics that arose out of the 2021 bull market and point to the future of where blockchain technology is headed. This move by Solana shows that despite the short-term struggles, it continues to develop for the future and looks to play a part in the wider adoption of blockchain and cryptocurrency. The low fee nature of the Solana blockchain makes it an ideal candidate for nonfungible token (NFT) projects and gaming dApps, and the release of a tech stack for mobile phones is the next step in creating wider access to these technologies. If the developers can manage to solve the issues that continue to cause Solana network outages, the token has a chance of being a top contender once the wider market turns bullish again.It feels to me like $SOL is going thru a similar trough of disillusionment as $ETH did back in 2018. In bear markets prices aren’t just reflexive—sentiment is too. @solana has a vibrant developer ecosystem and its downtime issues are solvable. This will be obvious in retrospect.— spencernoon.eth (@spencernoon) June 27, 2022Short-term pain is expected, but fundamentals improveWhile it’s nice to look ahead at what the distant future may hold, the reality is that the short-term outlook for Solana and the wider crypto ecosystem is rather unappealing. Insight into the lower price points to keep an eye on was offered by crypto trader and pseudonymous Twitter user Crypto Tony, who posted the following chart warning traders to not fall for the first retest of a major support level. SOL/USDT 1-week chart. Source: TwitterCrypto Tony said,“First demand zone tested hence this reaction, but you really want to call a bottom already after the first test…”Based on the chart provided, the notable lower levels of support for Solana are located at $13.50 and $3.50. Market analyst and pseudonymous Twitter user Crypto Patel also predicts further downside in the near term for SOL due to a strong amount of resistance found at the 200-day exponential moving average. SOL/USDT 4-hour chart. Source: Twtter Crypto Patel said, “After breakout and retest of $40 zone, Supports converts into Resistance […] Facing resistance at 200EMA. Anytime can give downside movement. Sell: $38.5, SL: $43.2, TP: $27.”Related: SOL price eyes 75% rally as Solana paints a bullish reversal patternIs SOL in the early stages of a recovery?A more optimistic outlook for Solana was offered by pseudonymous Twitter user Trader McGavin, who posted the following chart highlighting the important levels of resistance at $60, $74 and $95. SOL/USDT 1-day chart. Source: TwitterThe analyst said, “Double bottomed after breaking down from the wedge and rebounding higher. One of the first to bounce off the bottom and may be headed to $48.”The importance of maintaining the current price levels was also touched on by crypto trader and pseudonymous Twitter user Altcoin Sherpa, who posted the following chart noting the bullish signal provided by the medium-term EMAs. SOL/USDT 4-hour chart. Source: TwitterAltcoin Sherpa said, “$SOL: Still a do or die area in low time frames; this is the first time we’ve seen some of the medium EMAs flip bullish since March. Longing mid $30s is my current plan as a scalp since I missed the short higher.”The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Basel Committee wants to limit banks' digital asset exposure to just 1% of equity

On Thursday, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision suggested during its second consultation on the prudential treatment of crypto-asset exposures that banks limit their exposure to so-called Group 2 crypto assets to just 1% of their Tier 1 capital. Group 1 digital assets consist of tokenized traditional assets, such as synthetic stocks, or those with effective stabilization mechanisms, such as regulated stablecoins. Under the new proposal, Group 1 digital assets would be subject to at least equivalent risk-based capital requirements as traditional capital assets within the current capital framework, Basel III.However, cryptocurrencies that do not meet the above requirements will be classified as Group 2 digital assets, which would theoretically include major non-stablecoin, non-tokenized cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and most altcoins. Therefore, banks would only be able to commit 1% of their total equity or net asset value in either long or short positions toward Group 2 digital assets.Related: Bank of England and regulators assess crypto regulation in raft of new reportsMoreover, the Basel Committee is considering banks adopting a 1,250% risk premium for Group 2 digital assets. In comparison, stocks typically have a 20% to 150% risk premium attached to their nominal values, depending on the company’s credit rating. Under Basel III, a bank’s risk-weighted assets must not surpass 10.5% of its Tier 1 capital for prudent leverage.The move would likely severely constrain banks’ ability to purchase volatile cryptocurrency in the future as, for the sake of argument, a bank would need to add $125 million worth of risk-weighted assets to its portfolio for every $10 million in Bitcoin purchased, making them far less lucrative than assets with less risk-weighting premiums. Basel III is an international regulatory accord that nearly all financial institutions in developed countries must abide by and is enforced by law.

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Binance to assist Cambodia in developing crypto regulations

Crypto exchange Binance has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Securities and Exchange Regulator of Cambodia (SERC), according to a June 30 announcement.Binance and SERC will work together to develop crypto regulations in the country. SERC is looking to leverage Binance’s technical expertise and experience in the field to develop its own legal framework for the digital asset market.Cryptocurrencies are not regulated in Cambodia and any unlicensed activity involving these digital assets is highly prohibited. The partnership could prove pivotal for the South Asian nation where any crypto-linked activity is deemed illegal since 2018.Asia has become a crypto hotspot over the years with several nations in the region adopting a pro-crypto approach. The likes of Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines have come up with progressive regulations to promote the use of crypto assets in their respective countries.Binance has paid special attention to good regulatory relations, especially after its 2021 debacle that saw nearly half a dozen countries issuing compliance warning against the crypto exchange. The leading crypto exchange has mended its relations since then and has forged critical partnerships in Asia over the past year in countries such as Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.The crypto exchange has also made a name for itself when it comes to offering technical expertise to governments about crypto and helping them with regulating the nascent sector, The exchange had signed a $15 million investment agreement in Bermuda to teach and educate the community about crypto.Related: Binance U.S. makes BTC trading fee-free as competitors feel the heatBinance’s regulatory in-roads in the emerging markets have caught the attention of many including the likes of Alex Gladstein, chief strategy officer at Human Rights Foundation. Gladstein lauded Binance’s recent expansion in emerging markets such as Asia, Africa, and the Middle East and said:“While Western cryptocurrency companies are buying Superbowl ads and sports stadium rights, Binance is ruthlessly and custodial taking over emerging markets in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. They are winning.”Earlier in May Binance signed a similar MoU with the government of Kazakhstan, to help them with crypto adoption and regulations. Similarly, it had signed an MoU with the Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA) in December last year and later bagged a license to operate in the country as well.

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