News Roundup — BlackRock files for spot bitcoin ETF, with Coinbase as a crypto custodian

June 19, 2023

Major news stories this week;

  1. BlackRock files for spot bitcoin ETF, with Coinbase as a crypto custodian
  2. Curve pool imbalance triggers USDT depeg concerns, Tether CTO calls it FUD
  3. U.S. Judge Rebuffs SEC Request for Binance.US Asset Freeze for Now
  4. Crypto-Friendly Congressmen Draft Bill to Reform SEC, Fire Gary Gensler
  5. Strike Expands Lightning-Powered Cross-Border Payments to Mexico

Story Summaries;

  1. Asset management giant BlackRock took the first steps Thursday to launch a spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund, which has long been a point of contention between crypto advocates and federal regulators. The firm filed an application with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to launch the iShares Bitcoin Trust. If approved, the ETF would allow easy access for investors to get exposure to crypto in a product from one of Wall Street’s largest companies.
  2. The Tether USDT stablecoin slightly deviated from its United States dollar peg on June 15 due to an imbalance in Curve’s 3pool. The price of USDT fell by 0.3% to around 0.997 as its weightage in the curve 3pool increased to over 70% from the usual 33.1%. Curve’s 3pool is a stablecoin pool for decentralized finance holding a massive amount of liquidity in the three top stablecoins: USDT, USDC and DAI. The main cause of the imbalance was attributed to a whale address called CZSamSun that borrowed 31.5 million USDT and swapped it for USDC, leading to a slight deviation in USDT’s U.S. dollar peg value.
  3. The federal judge overseeing the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s case against Binance and Binance.US declined to order a temporary restraining order freezing the U.S. trading platform’s assets. That would allow the U.S. arm of the company to continue doing business while hashing out restrictions with the regulator. If the two sides can agree on limits, Judge Amy Berman Jackson, of the D.C. District Court, said “there’s absolutely no need” for a restraining order. In the meantime, the judge ordered Binance.US to provide a list of its business expenses to the court, and ordered the parties to continue negotiating.
  4. Following months of attacks against the crypto industry by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), two Republican congressmen have decidedly had enough of the agency’s chairman. “Today I filed the SEC Stabilization Act to restructure the SEC and fire Gary Gensler,” announced Warren Davidson on Twitter Monday. “U.S. capital markets must be protected from a tyrannical Chairman, including the current one.”. Joining Davidson in creating the legislation is Rep. Tom Emmer — the crypto-supportive House Majority Whip who has repeatedly blasted Gensler for his “incompetence” in governing the crypto market and driving the industry overseas.
  5. Digital payments firm Strike is expanding its Lightning Network-based cross-border payments service to Mexico, the largest market for remittances from the U.S., which accounts for around 95% of total remittances received by Mexicans from abroad, according to the company. The service, Send Globally, will be available in Mexico starting June 14. It runs on the Lightning Network, a second layer payment system for the Bitcoin blockchain designed to provide cheaper and faster transactions than the base network. U.S. dollars sent across the border using the service can be received as pesos in the recipient’s bank account, the release states.

And that’s all for last week’s news! Wishing you a great week ahead!

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