#1. Europe Collaborates On Digital Currency
Major institutions on the European continent are putting heads together to ensure a robust digital presence for the continent and respond to its new payment needs. Two of the strongest institutions in Europe, the European Commission, and the European Central Bank, in a joint statement, revealed its intention to explore the possibility of issuing a digital Euro as a complement to cash and payment solutions supplied by the private sectors on the continent.
This new venture becomes increasingly necessary due to the increasing demand for a digital form of payment on the continent and the world. The ECB further explained that it is considering starting the “digital euro project” towards mid-2021, which will be the starting point in actualizing a digital euro’s dream.
#2. Expert Believes Ethereum May Surge Sevenfold to $10,500
Leading strategist for Fundstrat Global Advisors LLC David Grider has predicted that the world’s second most popular cryptocurrency Ethereum may increase sevenfold to $10,500 after the virtual currency reached its all-time high this week.
The crypto enthusiast told Bloomberg that the crypto asset’s rise is mainly due to its popularity among the so-called decentralized finance applications. He also revealed that Ethereum had made progress towards a network upgrade that would allow it to process a similar number of transactions as MasterCard Incorporated and Visa Inc. The rise in the value of Ethereum earlier in the week sent shockwaves throughout the crypto world, leading to questions about the future of the crypto, and Grider, among other strategists, thinks that the value of Ethereum will only get better in the nearest future.
#3. Pornhub Accepts More Crypto as Payment Option
Leading pornography website Pornhub has added four new coins to the list of its payment options. The Adult website added XRP, BNB, USDC, and DOGE to its growing list of crypto payment options for its users.
Pornhub is arguably the leading adult website with more than 120 million daily visitors. With the addition of the new coins, users can now pay for premium subscriptions in the four digital assets. With this latest addition, the site currently accepts up to sixteen crypto coins, although it is only applicable to countries like U.S., U.K., and Singapore. In contrast, users in other countries like Germany and other E.U. affiliated countries are advised to pay through bank wire transfers.
#4. OCC Updates Shows Crypto Banking is Going Mainstream
Recent updates from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has indicated that cryptocurrency banking is steadily gaining momentum and even collaborating well with the traditional finance platforms. Leading the charge from the front is Anchorage, which received a conditional trust charger from the OCC, making it the first national bank for digital assets.
The OCC is also actively getting involved in the digital business; as confirmed in a statement, it is creating an association called the National Banks and Federal Savings Association, which will hold on to reserves on behalf of customers who use certain stablecoins. The OCC, in its statement, said:
“National banks and federal savings associations currently engage in stablecoins-related activities involving billions of dollars each day. This opinion provides greater regulatory certainty for banks within the federal banking system to provide those clients service safely and soundly.”
#5. Tether Delivers Millions of Documents to NYAG
The parent body of cryptocurrency exchange Tether has produced up to 2.5 million documents to the New York Attorney General’s office regarding the ongoing investigation. Index, the parent body of Tether and Bitfinex, has been under the New York AG’s office’s microscope due to several allegations, including an alleged non-disclosure over a missing $850 million that was seized by the police from its previous banking partner.
The company pleaded with the office of the A.G. to give it more time to provide other documents that will aid in their investigation. In a letter dated January 19, the company explained that it would contact the court in the next 30 days to update the whole situation or discuss any open items.
#6. Bitcoin Cash Option to be Launched by Bitman Founder Jian Wu
Bitman Funder Jian Wu has reportedly been offering perpetual swaps on Bitcoin Cash through its platform Bit.com. An insider and Chinese crypto-journalist Colin Wu reported that the former CEO is also planning to release the first-ever BCJ/USDT option, which will be the first in history cryptocurrency.
In a tweet, it was explained that Bit.com would launch the BCH contract on January 20, while also indicating that the contract will support up to 33 times leverage on airdrops up to 100,000 in BCH to new users and traders. The crypto enthusiast further revealed that Bitman had made a momentum loss on BCH, a condition that’s creating a huge problem with the Bitman inner circle.
#7. Crypto Tracking Service Alleges Movement of 200 Million XRP FROM Escrow Wallet
A twitter-based crypto tracking service Whale Alert has reported that Ripple fintech has moved a total amount of XR—200 million—and BitGo shifted 35 million XRP. Although several exchanges are currently delisting XRP, Adult pornography content creator, Pornhub is still using the coin as part of its payment. It’s also adding another major digital currency to the list of acceptable payment methods for its subscriptions. Some of the data shared by Whale Alert details two transactions bearing up to 200 million and 35 million XRP.
The data further revealed that Ripple wired the more significant portion of the digital currency from Ripple Escrow to a specified Ripple Wallet. The tweet was greeted with excitement from Tweeps, as several comments on the initial tweet were positive.
#8. Bitcoin Expected to Rise Further in the Nearest Future
Bitcoin’s bull run might not be over, as some might think, as the sporadic rise is just the beginning of its spike, meanwhile the number of wallets containing over 1000 BTC is increasing by the day. Experts think that with the recent investment in Bitcoin, we have not seen the end of this amazing run, as the price will continue to soar in the nearest future.
The rise in the price of the world’s most popular crypto has yielded results, as data from Glassnode revealed that as of January 20, there were well over 2,400 large-balance wallets. This year alone has witnessed 164 new wallets with 1000+ entities, which total around $6 billion.
The rise in the number of wallets is not the only visible change since the spike in bitcoin’s price; smaller wallets have also reduced significantly during the same period.
#9. Report: Asia is Controlling Global Crypto Trading
A recent report by Mesari indicates that cryptocurrency activities in Asia are equivalent to those in the United States and Europe combined. The research further revealed that the Asian region accounts for almost half of all digital asset trading and owns six of the world’s top ten largest crypto unicorns.
According to crypto analyst Mira Christanto, Japan, Singapore, China, Korea, and Hong Kong are the major leaders in this regard, while other Asian countries are also trying to get in the mix. Furthermore, he explained that Asia is solely responsible for 43% of the global worth of cryptocurrency activity, which equals a whopping $300 billion in transactions.
According to the report, more than 40% of the total market capitalization is situated on the Asian continent.
#10. Analysis: Bitcoin on the Verge of Hitting $200,000
A Bitcoin enthusiast and cryptocurrency analyst Willy Woo has indicated that if his projections are right and things continue the way they are in the cryptocurrency ecosystem, the price of Bitcoin might hit $200,000. Woo said that he is now of the firm belief that the $100,000 price target is way too low, and the least BTC can garner nothing less than $200,000.
Woo further explained in his tweet that looking at the historical antecedent of bitcoin’s price, the market capitalization has “matched market tops,” which would mean bitcoin could hit $200,000 and then correct significantly after the bull run that takes it there.
#11. Changpeng Zhao: Binance Burns Record Number of BNB Tokens
One of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, Binance, has completed its largest quarterly token burn, burning $165 million worth of BNB Tokens. This burn makes it the 14th quarterly Binance coin burn since the start of the company.
Speaking on this record-breaking burn, the CEO Changpeng Zhao stated, stemming from the Tokens’ burn, the total supply of BNB has decreased from 174.2 million BNB to 170.5 million BNB.
This burn is also unprecedented as it marks the start of a faster burn rate. Under this new system, it will take the company 5 to 8 years to achieve this goal, although the rate might later change in the future. One of the biggest worries that hit users from this burn is that they will not use the burn to determine Binance’s revenue.
#12. Value of Major Crypto Surge Despite Yellen’s Comment
President Biden’s nomination for the Treasury’s secretary Janet Yellen said that cryptocurrencies are used” mainly for illicit finances” during the senate finance committee. But her negative comment did not have any effect on the price of major cryptocurrencies, as the price of Ethereum reached an all-time high earlier in the week.
ETH underwent a bullish breakthrough that propelled the price to a new all-time high at $1,428, which led to a few changes in the crypto ecosystem. Vigilant crypto enthusiasts realized that the spike in the price of ETH attracted the attention of professional traders. Still, analysts have warned that the rise to a new high was also accompanied by a very large increase in short positions.
Although the negative comments by Yellen didn’t affect the price of Bitcoin, it hurt the wider market, and the world is waiting to see how the Bidden-Harris administration handles cryptocurrency.
#13. Coinbase To Acquire Crypto Infrastructure Provider Bison Trails
Leading Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is on the verge of acquiring a crypto infrastructure provider, Bison Trails. The leading crypto exchange says the new acquisition will help it develop into a major force in the crypto market and aid in its push to provide infrastructure as a service.
Although Coinbase kept a sealed lip when asked about the acquisition’s financial implication, but insisted that the latest push by the company will start a new dawn at the firm as they wish to become the leading name in infrastructure as a service business operation.
#14. Crypto Heist: Gangs Cart-Away $450,000 During Trade
In Hong-Kong, criminals have robbed a woman of HK$3.5 million during an OTC purchase in one of the most daring robberies in the country.
The woman in question, who has chosen to remain anonymous, explained to the authorities that the criminals lured her into an office for a peer-to-peer (P2P) transaction, in which she was made to believe she would trade USDT for Hong Kong Dollars.
Believing the criminals, she made the transaction via her iPhone. Afterward, some men came in, tied her up, stole her phone, and fled the scene. The event generated buzz in Hong Kong as several news outlets reported the unfortunate incidence, which is the second of its kind in many weeks, and they all occurred in broad daylight.
#15. Banque De France Successfully Launches Digital Currency for Interstate Settlement
The French Central Bank completed a central bank digital currency experiment using a blockchain platform for interstate settlement. The bank’s statement revealed that the pilot program was made possible by a private blockchain, provided by a United Kingdom-based blockchain firm SETL, for an agreeable fee of $2.43 million.
The French central banks used SETL features such as the Ines, Citi, CACEIS, OFI AM, and Groupama as part of the settlement of funds for the CBDC. With the pilot’s successful launch, the bank affirmed the earlier notion that the bank will conduct more pilot programs later in the year.