A week in review | US and Iran situation pushes up crypto market, new EU regulations trigger regulatory storm

In the past week, the situation between the United States and Iran has still affected the crypto market, and the EU ’s fifth anti-money laundering directive, which took effect on January 10, has also had a significant impact on European crypto companies.


Over the past week, the cryptocurrency market has risen again as Iran has launched attacks on multiple US targets in Iraq. Bitcoin, the highest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, exceeded $ 8,000 at one time, but then President Trump issued a statement that reduced the possibility of a war between the two countries, which triggered a market downturn. On Friday, the United States announced sanctions on Iran, and the crypto market rebounded slightly again.

This week's crypto lunatic John McAfee tweeted that he had previously predicted that the bet on bitcoin prices would be to attract new users. He had predicted that the price of Bitcoin would reach $ 1 million by the end of 2020, otherwise it would be "eat my dick". But now his supporters and believers are disappointed, and McAfee acknowledged on Twitter that if Bitcoin can't reach this goal by the end of 2020, this bet is just a publicity trick. "This is just a trick to recruit new users."

The Presidential Committee of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, directly under the President of South Korea, suggested this week that Bitcoin should be listed directly on the South Korean Exchange (KRX), the only stock exchange operator in South Korea. The committee recommended that the country should be allowed to use cryptocurrency products such as Bitcoin derivatives, and the South Korean government should also consider introducing a business license or licensing system for cryptocurrency exchanges, as "it is impossible to stop crypto asset trading."

Australian Craig Wright, who calls himself Bitcoin creator "Satoshi Nakamoto", submitted 428 documents to the court this week, including one called "Tulip Trust III." This may contain important bitcoin private key information. After the news came out, the cryptocurrency Bitcoin SV supported by Wright rose sharply.

Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith has been indicted this week. According to published court documents, a federal grand jury has accused Griffith of conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. U.S. authorities claim Griffith traveled to North Korea without permission earlier this year and attended the "Pyongyang Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Conference."

Earlier this week, Binance Exchange's futures platform launched XRP perpetual contracts which caused XRP to surge, but then the cryptocurrency exchange Bitbox, which is owned by the Japanese news giant LINE, announced that it would no longer support XRP.

Tron founder Sun Yuchen tweeted this week that he has opened a personal official channel on the video media platform YouTube. He said he will meet with followers via Twitter, YouTube, TikTok, Instagram and other platforms in the future. He called short videos a new form of self-expression that would allow the world to better understand him and Tron.

FOIN tokens have fallen from more than $ 3,000 to almost zero in the past week. The unregulated financial technology company Financial.org behind the FOIN token has closed, which is likely to be another crypto scam. With the FOIN price almost returning to zero, neither the investors of the ICO nor the holders of the token can recover their investment.

In crypto mining, Wu Jihan, founder of mining giant Bitmain, posted a headhunter's comment on Bitmain's former human resources director in a circle of friends, and pointed his finger at Zhanke Group. He said, “Do n’t be used as a gunshot, it ’s inconvenient to leave a bad name. People who started a business with him when he was the most stigmatized are also thrown after using it. He is stubborn and does n’t listen to reasonable advice. Suicide management causes a lot of trouble If you can't resist the loss, you must continue to walk and shoot the horse to survive. A competent and upright colleague should not be a cannon fodder. "

Japanese companies SBI Holdings and GMO Internet have agreed this week to conduct crypto mining operations in Rockdale, Texas. People familiar with the matter revealed that the two companies will settle in a 100-acre crypto mine operated by Northern Bitcoin.


On January 10, 2020, the EU's Article 5 Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) came into effect. The regulation aims to increase the transparency of financial transactions to combat money laundering and terrorist financing across Europe. According to the official introduction of 5AMLD, the directive expands the scope of supervision for the first time to crypto service providers including virtual currency-fiat currency exchanges and escrow wallet providers, and participants in crypto transactions in the name of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing Information. If the entity fails to meet the rules, the regulator will penalize it. Affected by this, several crypto companies have previously announced the closure or departure of Europe.

Effective January 10, 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will oversee companies doing business with crypto assets. Sources from the FCA's official website said the change was part of previously revised anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing regulations. The FCA also said that companies engaged in specific activities related to cryptocurrencies will need to comply with new requirements. Both new and existing companies need to comply with the revised regulations.

Cryptocurrency companies operating in Austria must begin applying for a permit from the country's financial regulators this week. The permit applicant must prove to the Austrian financial regulator that it has sufficient capacity, continuity and solvency to run the business. The Austrian Financial Markets Authority (FMA) will impose fines of up to 200,000 euros on crypto companies that are not registered with the country's regulators.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) announced this week that it intends to focus on data security in the financial industry, particularly in crypto assets. ESMA also revealed in its "Strategic Direction 2020-22" plans to introduce a legal framework for digital currencies.

ECB President Christina Lagarde said this week that the European Central Bank is eager to expand its role in developing central bank digital currencies, but that does not mean that private companies cannot join. Lagarde said that as companies and individuals make more cross-border payments, the bank will continue to study "the feasibility and advantages of central bank digital currencies."

In the Asia-Pacific region, the Qatar Financial Centre Supervisor (QFCRA) has announced that it is not permitted to perform virtual asset services within the Qatar Financial Centre (QFC). The QFCRA warned that "in the event of a violation of any activity not permitted by the QFC, the supervisory authority will impose penalties in accordance with its rights and obligations."

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) said this week that even if the social media giant Facebook's stablecoin Libra meets strict regulatory requirements, it cannot be launched in Australia. The bank also said it is currently considering a digital version of the country's currency, the Australian dollar, to enable digital currency commercial banks and other companies across Australia to speed up transactions.

In the United States, Illinois has become the latest state in the United States to consider smart contracts and other blockchain-based records as legal tools. The "Blockchain Technology Law" proposed by Rep. Keith Wheeler in the state came into effect on January 1, which opened up a whole new set of legal application scenarios for blockchain-based contracts.

Telegram's news application Telegram, which was halted due to its plan to issue Gram tokens, said that Telegram's Gram tokens are not investment products. Telegram stated that "you should not expect to make any profit by buying or holding Gram Tokens, Telegram does not guarantee profit. Gram Tokens are intended to serve as a medium of transaction between users in the TON ecosystem and not an investment product and should not be expected Make a profit by buying, selling or holding Gram tokens. "


Social media giant Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted his vision for the new 10 years on his personal Facebook page this week. He mentioned intergenerational change, new private social platforms, opportunities for decentralization, next-generation computing platforms, and new forms of governance in his vision. But he made no mention of Libra, the crypto project announced by Facebook last June. He mentioned that Facebook wants to be able to build commerce and payment tools so that every small business can easily access the same technology that was previously only available to large companies. Although the crypto project Libra is not mentioned, he also mentioned Facebook's vision of decentralized finance. Zuckerberg said he hopes that anyone can sell products through the storefront on Instagram, send messages through Messenger and support their customers, or pay at low cost across borders through WhatsApp.

PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the four largest auditing companies, announced this week that blockchain security chain Security has joined PricewaterhouseCoopers Switzerland to provide smart contract audit support.

Payment giant PayPal has completed a $ 4 billion acquisition of startup Honey. The acquisition will put payment processor PayPal ahead of crypto-friendly payment competitor Square.

Large-scale cryptocurrency lending company BlockFi has added Litecoin and USDC stablecoin to its list of supported digital currencies. BlockFi users can now trade and accept loans and interest using Litecoin and the USD stablecoin USDC of Coinbase, the major cryptocurrency exchange in the United States.

NBA player Spencer Dinwiddie from the Brooklyn Nets said on Twitter that he will issue a tokenized contract on January 13. Previously, his plan to tokenize his contract was opposed by the NBA League. The focus of the debate is that Dinwiddie may exercise options in the third year of the contract and promised that if he did choose and sign a higher salary The contract will "bring considerable returns to investors."


Former Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler tweeted that he has been sworn in to the United States Senate to become Georgia's newest senator. She also revealed that her first vote was in support of Trump's Small Business Administration, an organization designed to help autonomy for small businesses in the United States. Loeffler will assist in overseeing the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the main financial regulator. However, since Loeffler's husband is Jeffrey Sprecher, founder and CEO of the exchange operator Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), her appointment to the Agriculture Committee could create a conflict of interest.

Nasdaq recently issued a warning to bitcoin mining company Golden Bull. Nasdaq said that the online financial market and lending company Golden Bull failed to provide the 6-K financial statements for the first half of 2019 on schedule and therefore did not comply with the listing rules. The lack of necessary financial statements does not comply with NASDAQ's listing rules, and if the company fails to submit the necessary data, it may lead to its delisting from NASDAQ. However, Nasdaq gave the company a 60-day deadline to require it to provide related reports before. Golden Bull responded that it would provide the necessary information by the end of January 2020.

Nicholas Owen Gunden, a member of the board of Bitcoin derivatives service LedgerX, said the company was in chaos after its founders were treated unfairly. Already LedgerX's directors and investors have withdrawn their investments and said LedgerX has disappointed its investors. In a letter to LedgerX's board of directors, LedgerX shareholders, and the Office of the Inspector General of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Gunden wrote that he was concerned about how the company would operate after the founder of LedgerX was taken on administrative leave last month. He stated, "A few days after Paul Chou and Juthica Chou were taken on administrative leave, 75% of employees signed a petition in support of retaining their leadership position. I saw a copy of the petition and considered it legal "But he also mentioned that the two employees who filed the petition were fired" obviously for revenge. "

Picture source: Baidu picture

Author Liang CHE

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