Top Stories This Week
Hyperbitcoinization coming, says Bitcoin OG as ‘wholecoiners’ hit 1 million
Bitcoin has crossed a significant threshold this month — there are over 1 million addresses that hold at least 1 BTC. Data from Glassnode shows an escalating pattern with regard to the amount of so-called Bitcoin “wholecoiners.” If the trend continues, Bitcoin price escalation could soon make buying it not only a luxury but something potentially unattainable altogether, according to Adam Back, co-founder and CEO of Bitcoin firm Blockstream. This hyperbitcoinization refers to the moment when the benefits of Bitcoin for financial transactions will eventually lead to the replacement of established financial institutions by a public-driven system, with Bitcoin becoming the world’s default value system.
FTX pursues $244M clawback from ‘wildly inflated’ Embed acquisition deal
FTX’s leadership is looking to claw back more than $240 million from insiders and executives that benefited from FTX’s “wildly inflated” acquisition of stock-clearing platform Embed in September. According to court filings, Embed’s own chief technology officer, Laurence Beal, was stunned that FTX paid so much for the company after one short meeting with its then-CEO, Michael Giles. Beal described FTX’s due diligence process with a cowboy emoji. Lawyers accused FTX insiders of disproportionate payouts to Embed shareholders, including $55 million paid to its CEO.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to accept campaign donations in Bitcoin
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. will be the first presidential candidate in United States history to accept campaign donations in Bitcoin, he announced during his first appearance as a presidential candidate at the Bitcoin 2023 conference. He praised the cryptocurrency as a “symbol of democracy and freedom” during the event. By having attended the Bitcoin event, RFK Jr. is not only targeting voters but also a potential source of millions of dollars in donations. The democratic candidate is incumbent President Joe Biden.
Voyager bankruptcy plan approved, customers may recover 35.7% of claims initially
Voyager’s bankruptcy plan was approved on May 17 and its customers could now expect to receive 35.72% of their claims initially, either in crypto via the Voyager app or in cash, after 30 days. According to Voyager, it had $1.33 billion of assets for recovery as of May 8, of which $629.8 million was available for initial recovery, on claims of $1.8 billion. If FTX/Alameda Research’s claim for preferential recovery is unsuccessful, creditors’ initial recovery could increase. For that claim, Voyager is holding back $445 million. Voyager may also be able to recover funds from bankrupt crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital.
Coin Cafe ordered to repay $4.3M in fees that ‘wiped out’ investors’ Bitcoin accounts
Cryptocurrency trading platform Coin Cafe has been ordered to repay $4.3 million to its users after allegedly charging “exorbitant and undisclosed fees” for storing Bitcoin on the platform — leading to some accounts being drained entirely of their funds. One New York investor incurred fees exceeding $10,000 in a single month, while another investor was hit with fees amounting to $51,000 over a span of 13 months, said the office of the New York State Attorney General.
Winners and Losers
At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $26,889, Ether (ETH) at $1,813 and XRP at $0.46. The total market cap is at $1.13 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.
Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Render Token (RNDR) at 29%, Conflux (CFX) at 20.52% and SingularityNET (AGIX) at 19.94%.
The top three altcoin losers of the week are Pepe (PEPE) at -11.58%, Klaytn (KLAY) at -5.75% and Bitcoin SV (BSV) at 5.38%.
For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.
Australia’s world-leading crypto laws are at the crossroads: The inside storyColumns
Wall Street disaster expert Bill Noble: Crypto spring is inevitable
Most Memorable Quotations
“What makes ordinals interesting on Bitcoin, as opposed to any other platform, is that they’re building on the most secure blockchain in the world.”
David Tse, professor at Stanford University
“We’re seeing another wave of Bitcoin interest, largely driven by business and institutional adoption.”
Alex Leishman, CEO of River
“You create a [virtual] world where you see new experiences, new content, new ideas, and the sum of that is always more positive than negative.”
Sebastien Borget, co-founder of The Sandbox
“If the public is investing money and anticipating profit based upon the efforts of others, in a common enterprise, that’s a security.”
Gary Gensler, chair of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission
“For it [BRC-20] to really have the level of integrity that is offered by Bitcoin, there must be a hard fork that allows these things to be verified and validated and have the integrity of Bitcoin.”
Eli Ben-Sasson, co-founder of StarkWare
“Whether it’s Bitcoin or digital currency, nobody has been able to articulate what problem it is actually solving. […] I can send anybody in this room $5 right now using Venmo. […] So what is it that a central bank digital currency can do that Venmo can’t do?”
Neel Kashkari, president of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank
Prediction of the Week
Bitcoin price risk? US debt deal to trigger $1T liquidity crunch, analyst warns
Bitcoin stares down potential losses heading into the third-quarter of 2023 as U.S. lawmakers will likely reach an agreement on raising the debt ceiling.
Raising the debt ceiling means the U.S. Treasury could issue new bonds to raise cash to meet its previous obligations, draining liquidity from riskier assets like Bitcoin. Such macroeconomic hurdles could prevent Bitcoin from reclaiming its yearly highs of over $30,000 in the coming months, said pseudonymous independent market analyst Income Sharks.
“We most likely range between 20k to 30k and even get an altseason,” the analyst noted, adding that “new money isn’t coming in; it’s all just rotating. […] Unless we get a new narrative or Stocks to find a way to rally, it’s looking more likely that the U.S. elections in 2024 will be the next big catalyst.”
FUD of the Week
SEC warns that Filecoin ‘meets definition of a security’ — Grayscale
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has asked Grayscale Investments to pull its application for a Filecoin Trust, warning that its underlying asset, Filecoin (FIL), can be seen as a security. Grayscale initially lodged a Form 10 application with the regulator to launch an updated Filecoin Trust product in April. This week, it received a letter from the SEC warning that FIL “meets the definition of a security” under federal law and asked the firm to withdraw their application.
‘Trusted’ marketplace sold fake Trezor wallets stealing crypto — Kaspersky
Cybersecurity firm Kaspersky has reported an issue with fake hardware wallets impersonating major wallet firm Trezor. According to the Kaspersky team, attackers managed to access users’ crypto assets by replacing the inner firmware. The fake Trezor wallet allowed fraudsters to steal Bitcoin via a replaced microcontroller, which enabled attackers to take control of the user’s private keys. A standard set of wallet functions were provided by the fake wallet, which resembled a genuine Trezor Model T wallet.
‘Inferno Drainer’ scam as a service has stolen $5.9M since March
A new scam as a service called “Inferno Drainer” has reportedly stolen nearly $6 million from unsuspecting crypto users, according to Web3 scam-detecting firm Scam Sniffer. Inferno Drainer advertises that it provides ready-to-go code to scammers, allowing them to steal crypto in exchange for a 20% cut of the scammer’s crypto “loot.” The identified address was associated with over 689 phishing websites created since March 27 and had drained millions from victims on various networks, including Ethereum, Arbitrum, Polygon and BNB Chain.
Best Cointelegraph Features
Ordinals turned Bitcoin into a worse version of Ethereum: Can we fix it?
Deluged by NFTs and memecoins, Bitcoin has suddenly become a worse version of Ethereum. There are conflicting ideas about how to fix it.
Make 500% from ChatGPT stock tips? Bard leans left, $100M AI memecoin: AI Eye
The man who used ChatGPT to create a $100 million meme coin, AI stock market tips return 500%, and why AIs lean left.
‘Moral responsibility’: Can blockchain really improve trust in AI?
Decentralized ledger technology is arguably everything that AI is not: transparent, traceable, trustworthy and tamper-free. Could it offset the opaqueness of AI’s black-box solutions?
The most engaging reads in blockchain. Delivered once a week.
Cointelegraph Magazine writers and reporters contributed to this article.