Crypto Trading Volume Falls for Sixth Month, US GDP Disappoints + More News
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- Average crypto daily trading volumes in April 2022 fell 16% to USD 244m, recording six consecutive months of declining trading volumes, according to a report from digital asset data provider CryptoCompare. In total, volumes have fallen 71% since October 2021 (USD 841m) and 84% since the all-time high reached in January 2021 (USD 1.51tn), they added.
- Cryptoasset investment firm Dragonfly Capital announced the launch of Dragonfly Fund III, a USD 650m venture fund, which is also their largest one yet.
- Crypto market data provider for institutional investors and enterprises Kaiko acquired Kesitys, a provider of quantitative decision tools for risk optimization in crypto markets, for an undisclosed sum.
- Decentralized investment bank project Ondo Finance announced that it has raised USD 20m in a Series A funding round led by venture capital firm Founders Fund. Over the next few months, Ondo plans to launch several additional products, they added.
- Argent Labs, a project aiming to become the crypto super app, has raised USD 40m in a financing round led by Fabric Ventures and Metaplanet, according to Bloomberg. The company wants to create a "simple service" used for buying, storing, and transacting with more than 240 different Ethereum-based tokens.
- Football app OneFootball raised USD 300m from investors to help fund product development and expand its streaming services, at a valuation of over USD 1bn, Reuters reported, citing sources familiar with the matter. OneFootball plans to help the football industry release digital assets and fan-centric experiences based on blockchain technology, they added.
- Blockchain project Our Happy Company raised USD 7.5m in a seed round led by Infinity Ventures Crypto and Animoca Brands. The new funding will be used to continue growing and developing the company’s social non-fungible token (NFT) platform, OurSong, they added.
- Ex-Google CEO and chairman Eric Schmidt said he invested “a little bit” of money into crypto, but that he’s most interested in Web3, according to CNBC. If he were just starting out as a software engineer today, he said, he’d want to work on AI algorithms or Web3.
- US economic growth unexpectedly contracted in the first quarter. Gross domestic product in the US declined at a 1.4% pace in the first quarter, below analyst expectations of a 1% gain, per CNBC. Consumer expenditures rose 2.7%, but that came amid a 7.8% increase in prices, it added.
- The redesigned digital wallet from payments giant PayPal has been installed by over 50% of its user base, while the customers who use this wallet transact 25% more at checkout than users that are not using the app, the company’s CEO Daniel Schulman said in an earnings call. He added that the company needs to “double down” on the digital wallet, as this is “where the future of the industry is going” and “the future of Paypal”.
- Reality Labs, the metaverse-focused division of Meta, the parent company of the social network giant Facebook, posted a USD 2.9bn loss in Q1 this year, or 62% more than in Q1 of 2021. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, stated in an earnings call that he now recognizes “that it's expensive to build this” but that their financial goal in the future will be to “generate sufficient operating income growth from [a] family of apps to fund the growth of investment in Reality Labs.”
- Middle East-focused luxury real estate developer DAMAC Properties announced that the company started accepting bitcoin (BTC) and ethereum (ETH) payments.
- Blockchain-based nonprofit Endaoment announced the launch of the Basic Needs Fund, a collaborative effort that aims to bring housing, water, and food to marginalized communities around the world, with a goal of raising USD 300,000. For this, they are partnering with the sustainable water project charity:water, the nonprofit Feed the Children, and the nonprofit New Story.
- Central Filipino bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), announced that it has decided to pursue the pilot project of a wholesale central bank digital currency (CBDC). Dubbed 'Project CBDCPh', the pilot will test the use of CBDCs for large-value financial transactions on a 24/7 basis across a limited number of financial institutions, they added.
- The Russian Ministry of Finance has supported a number of proposals from law enforcement agencies to finalize the bill on the regulation of cryptoassets which is due to be introduced in May, according to Izvestia. The bill will clarify the procedure for the seizure of digital assets, but the regulation of mining and its taxation still require improvement.
- The US Acting Comptroller of the Currency Michael J. Hsu stated that stablecoins “lack shared standards and are not interoperable” and that setting such standards would ensure openness and inclusivity. He added that governmental bodies like the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency are willing to engage in such efforts.
- Bitcoin miner Argo Blockchain raised 2022 hashrate guidance to 5.5 exahash per second (EH/s), an almost 50% increase from previous guidance of 3.7 EH/s, mostly driven by mining rigs that use tech giant Intel’s new chips. Their mining operations at the Helios facility in Texas, USA, are expected to commence in May 2022.
- Bitcoin miner CleanSpark and Sustainable Bitcoin Standard (SBS), a company that incentivizes clean mining, jointly announced that CleanSpark is now a partner of SBS. SBS will provide CleanSpark with verifiable proof for the bitcoins that the Company sustainably mines as part of the partnership, they added.
- Private investment firm Apollo Global Management is starting a new digital-asset strategy and hiring Christine Moy as a partner for the task, according to Bloomberg. Moy previously spent 18 years at financial giant JPMorgan Chase & Co., most recently as global head of the blockchain product known as Liink, they added.