OCC's Fair Banking Rule, Gemini IPO, Coinbase Altcoins Hub + More News

Get your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptoasset and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.

Brian P. Brooks. Source: occ.treas.gov

Banking news

  • The US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today released its finalized rule to "ensure fair access to banking services provided by large national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies of foreign bank organizations." The rule codifies more than a decade of OCC guidance stating that banks should conduct risk assessment of individual customers, rather than make broad-based decisions affecting whole categories or classes of customers, when provisioning access to services, capital, and credit, according to the office. Meanwhile, Brian P. Brooks is stepping down today as Acting Comptroller of the Currency. Chief Operating Officer Blake Paulson will become Acting Comptroller of the Currency.
  • The OCC also announced conditional approval of the conversion of Anchorage Trust Company, a South Dakota chartered trust company, to become Anchorage Digital Bank, National Association. As reported, among investors of Anchorage, which is also an institutional crypto custody firm, is payments giant Visa.

Exchanges news

  • Bitcoin billionaires Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss told Bloomberg they’re considering taking Gemini Trust Co. public. "We are watching the market and we are also having internal discussions on whether it makes sense for us at this point in time. We are certainly open to it," they were quoted as saying.
  • Coinbase launched Coinbase Asset Hub — a "streamlined product for issuers to list their assets and do business with Coinbase." It will streamline the asset listing process and expand the number of services offered to digital asset issuers, the exchange said, adding that "the goal is a single interface at Coinbase for digital asset issuers to manage the full lifecycle of their assets."
  • The Japanese crypto exchange Coincheck is to start airing commercials on mainstream TV stations in some 26 Japanese cities and regions including the capital Tokyo. Per an official release, two commercials began airing on TV networks in the regions today, one of which features a symbolic-looking rocket preparing for take-off, witnessed by a crowd beaming spectators. The last time Coincheck began airing TV ads was in late 2017, with a series of commercials featuring the comedian Tetsuro Degawa – on the eve of a hack that later proved to be the biggest in crypto history.
  • A court in South Korea has sentenced the former chief executive of the now-defunct South Korean crypto exchange CoinNest, dishing out an 18-month-long jail term and fines of over USD 61,000 to the firm’s former CEO – in addition to a previous two-year probation term and more fines from a previous fraud conviction. Per Fn News, the latest punitive measures were handed out after the ex-CEO was found guilty on a separate charge of accepting a bitcoin (BTC) bribe worth USD 784,000 for arranging the listing of an unnamed altcoin referred to by the court as “S” coin.

Crypto adoption news

  • Gemini announced the upcoming launch of the Gemini Credit Card, a credit card that lets its users earn up to 3% back in bitcoin or other cryptoassets for every dollar spent. The card will be available to US residents, the company said without providing more details about the launch.

Blockchain news

  • The Russian Central Bank is preparing to launch its first blockchain-powered mortgages, reported news agency TASS. The agency quotes Olga Skorobogatova, the bank’s First Deputy Governor, as stating that her organization is now in advanced talks with the Federal Service for State Registration (the government agency that polices the national real estate register) and the Ministry of Digital Development as the bank edges closer to a rollout. Skorobogatova claimed the new digital mortgages would provide seamless financing solutions for property buyers in the country as the country edged toward a “digitized” banking system.

Investments news

  • Titan, a developer of software and services for advancing Bitcoin mining at scale, said it has received an unspecified strategic investment from Coinbase Ventures as part of its current seed fundraising round. Titan anticipates launching closed beta of Titan Pool, an enterprise-ready mining pool, this month.