PayPal launches dollar-backed stablecoin

PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) has launched its dollar-backed stablecoin, PayPal USD (PYUSD), marking a significant shift towards digital currencies. PYUSD is fully backed by US Dollars and US Treasuries, with one-to-one redemption for US Dollars. The stablecoin will be available to US customers and could become the native token for PayPal’s cryptocurrency service. Issued on the Ethereum blockchain, PYUSD aims to bridge the gap between fiat and digital currencies, facilitating fast transfers and supporting the growth of digital assets. Issuance is overseen by the Paxos Trust Company to ensure transparency and regulatory compliance.

MicroStrategy increases Bitcoin position after Saylor’s exit as CEO

After a difficult time when Michael Saylor stepped down as CEO of MicroStrategy (NASDAQ:MSTR) to focus on investing in Bitcoin (COIN:BTCUSD), the company’s position improved as the price of Bitcoin rose. MicroStrategy bought more Bitcoins and now has 152,800, bringing its average cost down to $29,672. The company’s share price also recovered. Saylor is a big supporter of Bitcoin and has been working to expand adoption of the Lightning Network to make payments cheaper and faster.

Bitcoin ETF: SEC sets deadline to decide while Grayscale faces litigation

The SEC has until Aug. 13 to approve or reject the ARK bitcoin ETF, along with applications from eight other organizations such as BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) and Bitwise. The SEC may extend the deadline by up to 240 days. Approval of one spot bitcoin ETF could force the approval of all the others, but the SEC has yet to show support. Grayscale is in legal proceedings with the SEC to convert its Grayscale Bitcoin Trust into a bitcoin ETF. Many believe the SEC will not approve a spot bitcoin ETF any time soon, while others see signs of a change in the regulatory environment. The litigation decision is criticized by some, who are calling for comprehensive crypto legislation.

Binance exchanges USDC for other stablecoins; Coinbase jokes about the change

During Coinbase’s (NASDAQ:COIN) Q2 earnings conference call, CEO Brian Armstrong joked about Binance moving funds from USDC to another stablecoin. USDC (COIN:USDCUSD) is the preferred choice on Coinbase, but Binance has been converting some of its reserves into other stablecoins, possibly towards First Digital USD (COIN:FDUSDUST). Binance has been looking for new stablecoins after the ban on issuing USD-linked BUSD, turning to TUSD and, more recently, FDUSD. The USDC has been losing market value, falling from $44.5 billion to $26 billion in the last year.

Bitget announces partnership with comedian to promote crypto education

Cryptocurrency exchange Bitget has announced a year-long partnership with actor and comedian Adam Devine, aimed at promoting crypto education and adoption in an engaging and light-hearted way. The company is focused on attracting young people, who will be the main builders of the crypto future. This partnership is part of Bitget’s ‘#SetForChange’ campaign following its rebranding initiative, emphasizing the new way of life and embracing the future of money, contemporary financial tools and Web3.

WhiteBIT launches its own blockchain

Cryptocurrency exchange WhiteBIT has launched its own blockchain, the WB Network, as part of a new era of progress for the company and its community. The new blockchain offers faster transactions and reduced fees to promote widespread adoption of blockchain technologies. The WhiteBIT team is committed to proactively integrating technology into the real economy and engaging the community in the development of the WB Network. The blockchain works on the Proof-of-Authority (PoA) consensus algorithm and has already successfully passed Hacken’s audit prior to launch.

Lido marks Ether depositors milestone as some DeFi protocols struggle

Net staking platform Lido recorded 10,000 unique ether (COIN:ETHUSD) depositors in July, bringing the total amount locked (TVL) to more than $15 billion in tokens, reaching the highest level since May 2022. Aside from the reduction in liquidity of DeFi pools, demand for stETH (COIN:STETHUSD) remains strong for lending protocols and tier 2 rollups. The recent uncertainty surrounding the Curve Finance situation has also taken a toll on the crypto ecosystem.

Cardano experiences quarterly growth driven by technology and developer interest

Cardano’s blockchain activity grew quarter over quarter, driven by technical improvements and increased interest from developers. Messari’s report showed locked value and transactional metrics increased, with Minswap exchange leading the growth. While the number of daily active users declined, the ratio of transactions per active address increased, suggesting higher average user activity. The blockchain also faced an increase in load, reaching 81% in May. Major upgrades and integration with the Ethereum Virtual Machine contributed to the growth.

Valio launches decentralized asset management protocol

The decentralized asset management protocol, Valio, has been publicly released, allowing users to have their funds managed by professional traders without relying on them as custodians. The app was launched on the Abitrum and Optimism networks, and does not require prior approval from managers. Assets are held in smart contracts and managers have limitations to avoid excessive price impact. Valio aims to attract investors interested in real success and seeks to facilitate the usability of DeFi applications and crypto wallets.

Sino Global Capital sues FTX for $67.3 million

Matthew Graham of Sino Global Capital filed a $67.3 million lawsuit against FTX Trading Ltd. on behalf of Sino’s Liquid Value fund, launched with Sam Bankman-Fried in 2021. The fund has raised $90 million through January 2022, with FTX as an anchor investor. Former FTX COO Constance Wang was hired by Sino Global in July.

Huobi faces net outflows over concerns about jailed executives

Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has seen net outflows of more than $73.3 million over the past seven days, during which time some executives have been arrested in China. Outflows accelerated, with Huobi facing a net outflow of $32.9 million in the last 24 hours. The exchange’s stablecoin balances have also declined significantly. Rumors of the executives’ arrests have surfaced, and Huobi is struggling to turn a profit, hoping to break even in the current quarter and return to profit in the next quarter. The company has yet to officially comment on the recent events.

Kenyan police raid Worldcoin crypto project warehouse

The eye-scanning crypto project Worldcoin, launched by OpenAI’s Sam Altman, is facing increased scrutiny in Kenya, with local police raiding its Nairobi warehouse looking for data, according to a local news report on  Monday. Kenya’s Home Ministry has suspended its operations and is investigating potential privacy risks. The company claims privacy protection measures, but privacy experts express concerns about sensitive iris digital data. The Kenya Capital Markets Authority warned about the lack of project regulation in the country. 

Curve Finance offers public reward after funds theft

In response to the re-entry bug and funds theft, the DeFi Curve Finance protocol has offered a public reward of $1.85 million to recover the remaining stolen funds. After the deadline expired with no return of funds, the protocol asked for public assistance in identifying the attacker. In total, 73% of the stolen funds were recovered, with several ethical hackers contributing to the return. As a precautionary measure to avoid contagion, the Aave community has banned further lending of Curve’s CRV token (COIN:CRVUSD), due to the significant debt position of Michael Egorov, founder of Curve.

UK to expand cryptocurrency fraud investigation unit

The UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) plans to expand its cryptocurrency fraud investigation unit as part of a strategy to tackle rising financial crime. The Complex Financial Crimes (CFCT) unit will receive new senior investigators to handle corruption and blockchain fraud cases. The agency will also create a Digital Assets Team (DAT) to investigate cyber asset crimes. The UK seeks to strengthen its internal policies to compete in the global market for digital assets and related technologies.

Singapore allocates millions to Web3 related projects

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will allocate around $112 million to support fintech solutions, including Web3-related projects. The funding is part of MAS’s renewed Financial Sector Technology and Innovation (FSTI) scheme, which aims to accelerate and strengthen innovation by supporting emerging technologies. The new scheme includes tracks such as the Enhanced Center of Excellence, environmental, social and governance fintech track, and the Innovation Acceleration track, which covers Web3. MAS will also continue to support the adoption of technologies such as artificial intelligence, data analytics and RegTech.

Miami Mayor accepts Bitcoin donations for presidential campaign

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez announced that his presidential campaign is now accepting donations in Bitcoin (COIN:BTCUSD). He is a vocal supporter of cryptocurrencies and believes that technologies like Bitcoin can democratize wealth creation. Suarez criticizes the Biden administration for its lack of understanding of cryptocurrencies and advocates for clear regulatory guidelines for digital assets. He also voiced opposition to central bank digital currency and stated that he would ban it if elected president. Despite some setbacks with MiamiCoin, Suarez remains committed to the crypto industry.

NFT trader makes nearly $1.5 Million by tricking bidding bot

Hanwe Chang, an NFT trader, made 800 ETH (nearly $1.5 million) by tricking a bot into buying his NFTs at inflated prices. He noticed that the bot was copying his bids on the NFT marketplace, Blur, and decided to bid on his own NFTs to trick the bot. The NFT community reacted with discussions and some criticism of Chang’s action, calling it “Bid Spoofing” or “Shill Bidding”, an illegal electronic fraud market activity.

Zero10 and JD Sports present Nike collection with augmented reality

Zero10 has partnered with JD Sports to introduce Nike’s (NYSE:NKE) new Need It Now collection. Through Zero10’s AR Mirrors, customers will be able to virtually try on clothing from the collection, including subtle effects such as water droplets. Additionally, the company launched a new point-of-sale tool that allows online shopping even when items are sold out. The partnership with JD Sports is yet another successful collaboration following deals with Coach, Calvin Klein, Crosby Street Studios and Tommy Hilfiger. CEO George Yashin celebrated the company’s growth and the perfect blend of sports and fashion.

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