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Another Million People Tried Crypto in the UK + More News

Sead Fadilpašić
Last updated: | 4 min read

Crypto Briefs is your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptocurrency and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.
(Updated at 17:26 UTC: updates in bold.)

Source: Adobe/Voyagerix

Crypto adoption news

  • 3.86%, or 1.9 million, of the general population in the UK currently hold cryptocurrencies, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) estimated, citing their newest survey. Moreover, the share of those who hold or held cryptoassets increased by 2.35 percentage points, to 5.35% (from approximately 1.5 million people to 2.6 million people), compared with the 2019 FCA Consumer Research, the regulator said.
    Some other findings:
    – 75% of consumers who own cryptocurrencies hold under GBP 1,000 (USD 1,229).
    – The most popular reason for consumers buying cryptocurrencies was as ‘as a gamble that could make or lose money.’
    – Crypto exchanges are a key market participant and most consumers used non-UK based exchanges.
    – This year 27% had never heard of cryptocurrencies, compared with 58% in the survey last year.
    Bitcoin (BTC) was the most recognized cryptocurrency and, whilst Libra does not yet exist as a cryptocurrency, 22% had heard of Libra.

    Source: The FCA

Tax news

  • Media outlets are reporting that the Australian Tax Office will send out some 350,000 notices to crypto traders to remind them that they must file their earnings – or risk falling foul of the taxman. Redditors took to the internet to complain that tax calculating methodology was difficult to understand.

Exchanges news

  • HDR Global Trading, the company that operates the BitMEX crypto exchange, said it has appointed a new non-executive chairman. Per a blog post, BitMEX stated that David Wong, a former Bank of China (Hong Kong) Group and ABN AMRO Bank executive, would join HDR’s three co-founders on the board of directors.
  • Binance will be acquiring a majority stake in crypto startup, making another step towards a branded payments card, The Block reported, citing no one. The deal could be made public already this week, it added.

Stablecoins news

  • The city of Naju, in South Korea’s South Jeolla Province, is set to launch a local, blockchain-powered stablecoin, per the Chunji Ilbo. The city authorities have teamed up with the Korea Minting and Security Printing Corporation for the initiative.
  • Soramitsu, the Japanese company currently developing Cambodia’s national digital fiat, has unveiled more details of the token it is developing for the University of Aizu. Per Nikkei, the token will first roll out for use in university cafeterias and will eventually be adopted for use in parts of the surrounding Fukushima Prefecture.

Mining news

  • As estimated, Bitcoin mining difficulty, or the measure that shows how hard it is to compete for mining rewards, remained the same after the adjustment today, still standing at 15.78 T. The next adjustment is estimated in around two weeks.
  • Crypto mining company Genesis Mining launched Hexa, an enterprise-grade mining management software that helps large-scale miners to build and operate crypto mining farms. The software’s features include rapid deployment and configuration, real-time monitoring and notifications, and advanced reporting, the company said.
  • Miner Hut 8, a US-based mining company, has raised a total of USD 8.3 million through the sale of 6% of its equity stake to investors. This is about USD 800,000 more than the initial funding target of USD 7.5 million. With that, the company closed its previously announced public offering through a syndicate of underwriters led by Stifel GMP, Canaccord Genuity Corp., Echelon Wealth Partners Inc., Gravitas Securities Inc., Haywood Securities Inc., and Richardson GMP Limited. The proceeds will be used for upgrading existing mining equipment with more efficient processing chips from mining hardware company MicroBT, the press release said.

Blockchain news

  • Chinese education boards want to use blockchain and big data to help students with special needs receive a better standard of learning, reports Sina. The media outlet quotes a special needs teachers’ college dean in Nanjing as stating that “the only way to fully promote the modernization of special education” is to make use of industry 4.0 innovations like blockchain.
  • Augur (REP) v2 should be launched on the Ethereum (ETH) mainnet on July 28, 2020. Augur v2 introduces a new REP token called “REPv2,” said the press release, while the first REP token is to be renamed to “REPv1.”
  • Blockchain application platform Qtum (QTUM) has completed a hard fork of its testnet, in preparation for the launch of its mainnet hard fork that’s expected to happen on August 28, 2020. Per the emailed press release, the testnet upgrade went live on June 29, and it introduced offline staking, which enables offline addresses to be delegated to online nodes that provide staking services.

Tokenization news

  • A columnist for Russian media outlet Versia said that many large Russian companies are still hoping they will be able to tokenize commodities, mining efforts and resources. So far only Norilsk Nickel has been given the go-ahead to begin trading, but the columnist opines that “some of Russia’s largest companies” are hopeful of pulling off a regulatory breakthrough.