Crypto Price Check: Under the Spell

Another China-related story is that Bitmain, a major manufacturer of bitcoin mining equipment, has announced plans to stop shipping its Antminer products to China. This is another sign of how China’s latest crackdown is the most severe yet and could have more major consequences.

It’s been a positive week for the cryptocurrency market in general, but fortunes could be about to change.

The US government is continuing to consider crackdowns, with talks of an executive order that will bring in more rules for cryptocurrencies. These could include greater financial regulation, measures to ensure national security, and an official to coordinate agencies working with cryptocurrencies. If the executive order doesn’t go through, the government will still make its approach for handling cryptocurrencies public, so we’ll soon find out where all this ends.

Still, it’s not all bad news in the US, as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved a new crypto ETF, the Volt Crypto Industry Revolution and Tech ETF. The fund will focus on companies exposed to bitcoin, with around 80% of the portfolio composing of crypto stocks (and more traditional stocks making up the remainder).

A dilemma that the decentralized finance world has faced for a while now is the potential of a Big Login coming (whereby users can log into wallets using a universal login, like Google or Facebook linked accounts).

It seems that Ethereum is now beginning to create its solution: Sign-in With Ethereum. This would allow users to use their Ethereum wallet as a way to identify them and let them log into other services, but while choosing which aspects of their identity (like name or age) they associate with the service. Could this be the future?

There are also a few new projects in the works. The venture capital fund NFX has put together $450 million as part of an initiative for funding crypto gaming projects — it’s specifically looking for projects that bring together web3, crypto, and NFTs. NFX has opted for FAST (founder-friendly, application-driven, software-enabled, transparent) funding, which is different from typical funding as it’s much quicker and simpler. The money will be given to whoever successfully applies first.

In an even bigger deal, Tether has loaned out $1 billion to the crypto lending protocol Celsius Network. This will be welcome news for the project, which Kentucky’s securities regulator recently dealt a cease-and-desist order for breaking laws. Tether has also lent out money to other crypto companies.

Interestingly, a project hoping to enable anyone to rent out NFTs, has received $1.5 million of funding from Animoca Brands, a global developer with a range of crypto and gaming projects under its belts. The project in question, called reNFT, aims to offer smart contracts that will let borrowers “own” NFTs for as long as they want while putting down collateral. Could this be the next stage of the NFT craze?