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BT Daily News: Ethereum 'merger' could come under SEC scrutiny

BT Daily News: Ethereum 'merger' could come under SEC scrutiny

1. Ethereum 'merger' could come under SEC scrutiny

According to the Wall Street Journal, Ether's recent shift from its previous PoW to a PoS model, which classifies the world's second largest cryptocurrency as a security, may have caught the attention of SEC Chairman Gensler. Gensler shared his comments a few hours after the successful Ether "merger", talking about the Howey test, a test used by courts to determine whether an asset is a security. He said that cryptocurrencies and intermediaries may have to pass this test in order for an asset to be recognized as a security, and that the Howey test will also examine whether investors expect to be rewarded for the work of third parties. This is another measure of the Howey test from the perspective of cryptocurrencies, Gensler said. However, Gensler did not provide further clarification, saying that it does not explicitly point to any specific cryptocurrency.

2. US Treasury seeks public comment on cryptocurrency-related financial crime risks and ways to address them

The US Treasury Department wants the crypto community to engage in a discussion about how digital assets are being used for illicit activity and how the department should respond to the problem. The U.S. Treasury released a "Request for Comments" on Monday that lists more than 20 questions and asks the public to explain whether it has "comprehensively defined the risks of illicit financing associated with cryptocurrencies" and states that various federal officials (including the Treasury Secretary, Attorney General, Secretary of Homeland Security, Director of National Intelligence and Secretary of State) will develop a "coordinated action plan.

The announcement states that various federal officials (including the Treasury Secretary, Attorney General, Secretary of Homeland Security, Director of National Intelligence and Secretary of State) will develop a "coordinated action plan" to address the national security risks that digital assets may pose. The announcement states that "the increasing use of digital assets in financial activities increases the risk of crimes such as money laundering, terrorist and proliferation financing, fraud and theft schemes, and corruption. These illicit activities highlight the need to continuously review the use of digital assets, the extent to which technological innovations impact such activities, and explore opportunities to mitigate these risks through regulation, oversight, public-private sector partnerships and law enforcement. "

3. Under Secretary for the Treasury: Supporting the sound development of fintech such as security-based token issuance in Hong Kong

To promote the development of security-based token offerings in Hong Kong, the Deputy Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, Mr Chan Ho-lien, the Director of Licensing and Head of Financial Technology Unit of the Intermediaries Division of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), Mr Wong Lok-yan, and the Head of Financial Technology of Invest Hong Kong, Mr Leung Han-king, co-chaired two meetings with the security-based token offering industry on 14 and 16 September. Noting that security-based token offerings have long been available in Hong Kong and that more than a dozen potential token issuers were interested in security-based token offerings at last week's meeting, Mr Chan stressed the Government's commitment to supporting the robust development of financial technology, including security-based token offerings, in Hong Kong.

4. US SEC charges Ian Balina with promoting unregistered crypto token SPRK

Blockworks tweeted that the US SEC charged cryptocurrency investor Ian Balina with participating in the promotion of SPRK, a crypto asset that was unregistered in 2018. The SEC noted that software development company Sparkster issued SPRK, an unregistered security, between April and July 2018 and raised $30 million in funding, the filing shows. Balina contracted with Sparkster at the time and promoted SPRK tokens on YouTube, Telegram and other social media platforms. As previously reported, in May this year, Sparkster, a "no code" software platform, traded over $22 million worth of Ether for USDC. Sparkster raised over $30 million through an ICO in 2018 and has not distributed SPRK tokens to investors since, and development of the project has been stalled. Progress on the project has been stalled, with its Github last active in March 2019, and the wallet where the transfer took place over the weekend last active in August 2018.

5. Korean credit card company Shinhan Card launches blockchain-based digital warranty service

Shinhan Card, Korea's largest credit card company and one of the world's top five credit card issuers, has launched a blockchain-based digital warranty service for certifying the authenticity of products. BGZT, a platform for selling used goods in Seoul, will be the first to support the warranty service. About a year ago, Shinhan Card signed a partnership with the company to expand its strategic alliance in the platform business. When customers use Shinhan Card to purchase items at the three BGZT shops in Seoul, they can scan the QR code on the purchased product and receive a digital warranty. They can then view the product details on Shinhan's pLay mobile app.

6. Russia sets up crypto expert working group to publish cryptocurrency mining standards in February next year

A working group of Russian crypto industry experts, comprising members of the Russian Association for Crypto Economics, Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain ( Racib ), the cryptocurrency sector and other related industries, has announced the formation of a working group that will join forces to develop a mining standard that should improve the overall efficiency of mining, aiming to increase the time that expensive data processing equipment operates under optimal load and thus improve profitability. It should allow for proper calibration of ventilation systems, taking into account metrics such as humidity, season, region and the specific location where crypto mining units are installed. The standard is expected to be published in February 2023.

7. Nic Carter: Nine errors in the White House report on the climate impact of crypto mining

CoinMetrics co-founder Nic Carter recently posted an article pointing out nine key errors in the study "The Climate and Energy Impacts of U.S. Crypto Assets" published by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), as follows: almost no new data; ignoring contributions from industry experts; relying on De Vries/Digiconomist-related articles relies on Gallersdörfer, Klaaßen and Stoll-related articles; cites the junk paper published by Mora et al. in 2018; urges careful use of data while using it recklessly itself; ignores the efforts of miners using renewable energy; and refuses to predict the trajectory of Bitcoin's energy consumption. Making silly and counterproductive suggestions.

8. Japanese politicians are leading the way in developing Web3 policies

Japanese politicians are spearheading a Web3 policy that is a radical departure from the country's normal legislative process. Lawmakers have published a white paper addressing issues including tax reform and NFT. the Crypto bill, which includes items related to the metaverse, could be introduced next year. Political leaders in Japan are looking to bring the country into the Web3 era, and so far, this year a handful of politicians have been pushing cryptocurrency and Web3 policy on their own, publishing reports and proposing updates to existing laws and regulations. This rapid push began earlier this year when Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida designated Web3 as a pillar of economic reform.

9. Web3 infrastructure provider Ankr enters into a partnership with Polygon

Web3 infrastructure provider Ankr has announced a partnership with Polygon to integrate its App Chains into Polygon Supernets and become an approved infrastructure provider, enabling Web3 developers to easily build custom blockchains and support high-quality Web3 games, financial products and other decentralized applications. As previously reported, Polygon launched its dedicated blockchain network, Supernets, in April of this year and announced that it would invest $100 million to fund projects using the network.

10. Net inflows of $7 million into cryptocurrency investment products last week

According to CoinShares weekly data, net inflows into digital asset investment products totaled $7 million last week, with bitcoin inflows totaling $17.4 million and ethereum outflows totaling $15.4 million. Short Bitcoin also saw modest inflows totaling $2.6 million, with total assets under management approaching a record $169 million. In terms of region, inflows were concentrated in the US and Germany, totaling $14 million and $11 million respectively. Sweden and Canada saw outflows of $16 million and $4.2 million respectively.

11. US 10-year Treasury yield rises to 3.5% for first time since 2011

The yield on the 10-year US Treasury note rose above 3.50% for the first time since 2011, as US inflation trends reinforced the possibility that the Fed will take more aggressive tightening measures. Traders expect another 75-basis point Fed rate hike this week to be largely a foregone conclusion. There are also rumors that the Fed could raise rates by 100 basis points to curb price pressures. Even after the latest round of rate hikes, price pressures have shown little sign of easing. Investors have raised expectations of how much the Fed may eventually push policy rates higher in early 2023. But concerns are growing that the economy could slip into recession and prompt policymakers to cut interest rates next year.
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