19 Aug 2021 · 3 min read

US May Regulate DeFi, El Salvador's Bitcoin Draft Regulations + 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.

Source: AdobeStock / Egor

Regulation news

  • Decentralized finance (DeFi) projects may still fall under the jurisdiction of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the watchdog’s chairman Gary Gensler told The Wall Street Journal. He added that projects that reward participants with valuable digital tokens or similar incentives could cross a line into activity that should be regulated in spite of their decentralized status.

Adoption news

  • The central bank of El Salvador, Banco Central de Reserva (BCR), has published two draft regulations on how banks should handle bitcoin (BTC): the first defines BTC as legal tender, while the second expands upon the first. Financial entities must apply to the central bank to offer digital wallets, while applications must detail the type of product being offered, and include target market details, risk assessments, charges to customers, education provisions for customers, and complaint procedures.
  • Banking giant JPMorgan Chase has reportedly blocked all account activities of BTC mining company Compass Mining, according to a tweet from the latter’s CEO Whit Gibbs. The bank has not confirmed these allegations yet.

CBDC news

  • Mikhail Fedorov, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister and the head of the country’s Ministry of Digital Transformation, revealed considerations within the ministry to test out the country’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) by using the electronic currency in staff salary payments, according to an interview with local media outlet TSN. He argued that the initial roll-out of the CBDC should focus on a small, controlled use case rather than being deployed for social payments, so it could be tested in order to prevent inappropriate use.
  • The Bank of Thailand has published the results of a new study into how to manage the implications of issuing a retail CBDC for the country’s financial sector. It concluded that in order to ensure that the retail CBDC does not present a risk to the country’s financial stability, it must fit the following three criteria: “(1) the CBDC shall be cash-like and non-interest-bearing, (2) intermediaries such as financial institutions shall be the distributors of CBDC to the general public, and (3) conditions or limits for converting CBDC shall be established.”

Exchanges news

  • Crypto exchange Coinbase has announced it is launching in Japan and partnering with Japanese banking giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) to enable customers to access the platform through a MUFG Quick Deposit feature. The exchange also added that it will be launching retail products first, including a suite of five top assets based on trading volume, and will add more assets and products in the coming months.
  • Crypto exchange Binance has announced that users from Australia will be restricted from opening new accounts for options, margin products, and leveraged tokens. They added that this is part of their efforts to keep their compliance proactive.
  • Crypto exchange Bitfinex has announced that they have added support for the Turkish language on their platform as the sixth language available, following English, Russian, traditional and simplified Chinese, and Spanish. Additionally, educational content is now available in Turkish on Bitfinex’s Knowledge Base as well. This announcement follows Bitfinex seeing a 734% increase in new accounts being opened this year compared to the last from users in Turkey, they said.

Blockchain news

  • The Australian Border Force (ABF), Infocomm Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA) and Singapore Customs, along with other industry representations, have announced they have concluded a blockchain trial project analyzing the status of the countries’ digital verification systems in issuing and verifying trade documents. According to the release, the trial demonstrated Australia’s capability in issuing high integrity digital trade documents that can be instantly authenticated, provenance traced, and digitally processed.
  • Enterprise-grade blockchain platform Zilliqa (ZIL) has announced the projects for its 2021-2022 cohort of its six-month ZILHive Accelerator program that helps upcoming blockchain projects in all matters, from concept to commercialization. The chosen projects will also have the chance to receive up to USD 150,000 in growth capital from Zilliqa’s venture fund ZILHive Ventures.

Hack news

  • Blockchain interoperability project Poly Network has announced that “Mr. White Hat” hacker has returned USD 427m worth of funds, with about USD 141m still in multisig wallets requiring Mr. White Hat’s private key authorization. They have also credited USD 500,000 bug bounty funds to the address provided by the hacker, restored some cross-chain functionality, and are restoring some stuck historical transactions.