Bitcoin Price: US$ 29,303.84 (-0.43%)
Ethereum Price: US$ 1,840.73 (-0.50%)
Credit-card giant Visa has completed testing a novel method to simplify paying Ethereum blockchain transaction fees, known as “gas fees,” allowing users to pay in fiat currency using their credit cards, as detailed in a recent blog post. Visa believes that while blockchain technology has gained adoption, the complexity of on-chain transactions remains a barrier. The proposed solution leverages Ethereum’s ERC-4337 and a paymaster contract to facilitate gas fee payments via a Visa card. In a separate development, Brazil’s Congress has advanced legislation aiming to increase taxes on cryptocurrencies held overseas. Cryptocurrencies would be recognised as “financial assets” for tax purposes in foreign investments, and taxes on gains from price fluctuations would be applied. The changes could impact both local and global crypto exchanges operating in Brazil. Furthermore, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has initiated legal action against individuals and their organisation, Fundsz, alleging a deceptive scheme involving cryptocurrencies and precious metals trading, misleading investors with implausible returns and fabricated profits. The CFTC aims to ensure fairness through asset freezing, restitution for deceived investors, and penalties against the defendants.
Decentralised finance (DeFi) platform Curve Finance has announced its commitment to reimburse users affected by a recent hack that resulted in $62 million in losses. Progress in ongoing investigations has led to the recovery of approximately 79% of the funds. Curve Finance will evaluate each impacted user for reimbursement to ensure equitable distribution. The hack targeted vulnerabilities within the Vyper compiler’s release history, affecting versions 0.2.15 to 0.3.0. The complexity of the attack required significant skill and resources. The DeFi ecosystem, still recovering from the Curve Finance hack, faced additional exploits, including against DeFi protocol Steadefi. Meanwhile, Binance invested $5 million in Curve tokens as the hacker partially returned funds to manage risks. In other news, cryptocurrency hedge fund Three Arrows Capital’s co-founder Kyle Davies avoided contempt charges after it was revealed he had become a citizen of Singapore, making US jurisdiction over him questionable. The fund’s liquidators are seeking to recover $1.3 billion in funds from the co-founders, with the firm owing creditors $3.5 billion.
The recent downgrade of the United States’ debt by Fitch Ratings, signalling waning confidence in the nation’s fiscal stewardship, has prompted a cautious pivot among investors who have diverted resources from traditional assets such as stocks, commodities, and bonds towards more secure alternatives like cash. Despite this, the credit default swaps indicating the cost of insuring U.S. sovereign debt against default have shown relative stability, possibly owing to the enduring perception of U.S. Treasuries as a global safe haven due to government backing. This downgrade-induced market recalibration might cast a shadow over Bitcoin’s trajectory as its decentralised advantages contend with the initial flight to liquid assets during these times of heightened uncertainty. In parallel, the apprehension surrounding the FTX founder’s situation unfolds, as Sam Bankman-Fried’s bail revocation necessitates his confinement in a Brooklyn detention facility. Concurrently, speculation by former SEC official John Reed Stark suggests the present regulatory climate’s reluctance to endorse a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund, while contemplating the potential for change under a Republican administration, which might foster an environment more conducive to cryptocurrency-friendly regulations.
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