Senator Wendy Rogers Wants To Make Bitcoin Legal Tender In Arizona

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Haider Jamal
January 29,2023

Arizona State Senator Wendy Rogers has introduced numerous crypto-related bills in the past, with the most recent one being to make Bitcoin (BTC) legal tender in the state. This marks a new trend in the United States wherein many government officials have realized that, despite their best efforts to curb the booming industry, crypto and its associated components (NFTs, blockchain, the metaverse, and so on) are not going anywhere.

What happened?

The right-wing senator tweeted that she has already launched her crypto bills and that her state senate Republican colleagues Jeff Weninger and J.D. Mesnard have also co-sponsored the bills, one which seeks to make the flagship crypto legal tender.

According to the bill, Bitcoin is defined as a fully decentralized, P2P virtual currency in which a record of transactions has to be maintained at all times through the blockchain and that new units of this digital currency are generated via the computational solution of mathematical problems. The bill also clarified that Bitcoin operates independently of any central bank, intermediary, or third party.

Another bill would permit state agencies to enter into a deal with a crypto issuer to offer a viable procedure of accepting cryptocurrencies as payment for various purposes such as civil penalties, fines, charges, rates, rent, taxes, revenue, special assessments, and any other financial obligation.

In 2022, Rogers had introduced a similar bill in Arizona to make BTC legal tender, however she was denied. She would later tweet that centralized digital money controlled by central bankers is equivalent to financial slavery, and that a truly decentralized currency, like Bitcoin, is synonymous with liberty, the very basis upon which the country was built.

Bitcoin becoming mainstream?

Despite a tumultuous year for crypto in 2022, which saw many incidents like the collapse of Terra and FTX, interest in crypto and crypto-related products has only continued to increase. Many major names in several industries like Emirates, Samsung, JPMorgan, Microsoft, Starbucks, and more have expressed interest in either crypto or the underlying technology behind it and its related components.

El Salvador became the inaugural nation to accept Bitcoin as legal tender alongside the United States Dollar in September 2021. Since then, the country has bought thousands of BTC for its treasury, led by pro-crypto president Nayib Bukele who also announced in November that El Salvador is buying Bitcoin on a daily basis and that the country will be using geothermal energy to power Bitcoin City.







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April 14,2024

Bitcoin Undergoes Price Correction As International Conflict Escalates

Bitcoin (BTC) encountered a substantial downturn recently, witnessing a decline that pushed its value downward by approximately $5,000 within hours. Numerous altcoins also experienced significant price drops exceeding 10% within a 24 hour timeframe. The rising dominance of Bitcoin during this correction signifies poor performance by altcoins. Though some have rebounded, various 24 hour charts still reflect significant losses.

Major losers among higher-cap altcoins include XRP (-11%), SOL (-13%), DOGE (-13%), ADA (-13%), AVAX (-18%), SHIB (-12.5%), BCH (-10.5%), DOT (-13.5%), LINK (-14%), among others. Meme coins were also heavily affected, experiencing losses of up to 30% in certain cases. At one point, the total crypto market cap dropped by over $200 billion, and although it has slightly recovered since, it remains below $2.6 trillion.

 

An Inevitable Decline

The week had initially shown promise for the flagship cryptocurrency. Starting strong on Monday, Bitcoin surged to a four-week peak of over $72,500 amidst rising demand for spot ETFs. However, it failed to sustain this momentum, retracing to $67,500 by Wednesday following the announcement of higher-than-expected March inflation data in the US. Despite some recovery in the following days, with a brief challenge of $71,000 on Friday, Bitcoin faced a sharp correction triggered by recent US Fed statements on monetary policy, resulting in a massive drop and nearly $1 billion in liquidations.

Despite Bitcoin managing to recover some ground, its market capitalization has fallen to $1.330 trillion on CoinMarketCap. A silver lining is the increase in the dominance of Bitcoin to 51.7%, up over 1% in a day. The crash also impacted other financial markets, including gold.

 

Other Markets

El Salvador saw its economy show resilience recently, surpassing GDP projections. Elsewhere, Wall Street grapples with uncertainty amid a barrage of adverse news especially after the Iranian attack. The European Central Bank hints at interest rate cuts in June, while tech giants face financial strains, leading to aggressive creditor actions. Latin America emerges as a promising center for food oil production.

Geopolitically, Iran extends its influence through allied groups, and Ukraine engages in bond restructuring amidst tensions with Russia. Commodity markets react to bans on Russian metal imports. Former US President Trump remains active in SPAC deals despite financial setbacks. Notably, Ghana secures IMF funds amidst economic challenges, and the Qatar Royal Family bolsters its position with a substantial fortune. Lastly, India implements emergency measures to manage summer energy demand, while Ukraine reports escalating conflicts in the east amidst Russian aggression.

 

April 13,2024

Hong Kong SFC To Approve Bitcoin And Ethereum Spot ETF Applications

The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) is reportedly poised to greenlight spot ETFs directly investing in Bitcoin and Ethereum as of this coming Monday, as per insider sources. CryptoWeekly previously reported how Chinese equity funds were chasing spot Bitcoin ETF approval via Hong Kong, and it looks like that goal is now turning into a reality.

 

Awaiting Approval

The international arm of Harvest Fund Management Co., namely Bosera Asset Management (International) Co., and HashKey Capital are anticipated issuers gaining SFC approval for these spot to crypto ETFs. Anonymity was requested by sources due to the non-public nature of this information.

In any case, both entities currently await SFC and Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd. approval, aiming to finalize listing particulars and launch the ETFs by the end of the month. The schedule remains fluid, subject to potential last-minute adjustments.

 

A Resurgence

In related developments, HSBC recently released a statement regarding cryptocurrencies, affirming rigorous testing procedures. This approval expectation follows reports earlier this week of Harvest intending to pursue a spot Bitcoin ETF launch in the region. On April 9th, the SFC authorized Harvest and China Asset Management to offer virtual asset fund management services.

The US introduction of spot Bitcoin ETFs on January 11th triggered a crypto market resurgence this year. Collectively, these 11 ETFs have amassed nearly $59 billion in assets, propelling BTC prices to a record high of $73,798 in mid-March.

 

April 12,2024

Popular Crypto Analyst Offers Insight Into The Upcoming Halving Event

Cryptocurrency analyst Michaël van de Poppe predicts the potential for Bitcoin (BTC) to reach a new all-time high (ATH) against the USD before the upcoming halving event, while alternative cryptocurrencies face a challenging period.

 

New Potential ATH

In a recent tweet, van de Poppe shared his analysis of the current crypto market, highlighting an encounter by Bitcoin with a crucial resistance level. He anticipates that if the flagship crypto manages to breach the $71,000 to 72,000 range, it could set a new ATH before the halving event. Additionally, he observed a significant decline in altcoins compared to Bitcoin, suggesting an imminent rotation.

The timing of the tweet coincides with Bitcoin surpassing the $70,000 milestone on Thursday, as seen on CoinGecko. Bitcoin has recorded a 4.6% gain this week, with a substantial 67.8% increase since the beginning of the year.

 

Excitement For The Halving

In any case, the recent surge exhibited by Bitcoin when it went above $70,000 has been linked to various factors, including positive Producer Price Index (PPI) data and increased interest shown by wealthy investors, such as the R360 investment club.

The upcoming Bitcoin halving event, scheduled for April 20th, 2024, is anticipated to have a significant impact on the mining industry, according to a recent JPMorgan report. The aforementioned tweet suggests that this event could play a crucial role in the future price trajectory for BTC. Elsewhere, the rise in daily transactions of Shiba Inu (SHIB) by 1,082% indicates continued bullish sentiment towards SHIB, according to CoinMarketCap.

 

April 12,2024

New LONDON Token Proposed By Mayoral Candidate Brian Rose

A groundbreaking political development has unfolded regarding the integration of cryptocurrency into the daily lives of London residents, spearheaded by a mayoral candidate. The plan entails distributing £100 worth of a new digital token, dubbed the LONDON token, to every individual residing in the city.

 

Following The Trend

This initiative, fueled by a billion-pound fund sourced through a one-time tax on financial sector profits, aims not only to introduce cryptocurrency into the economic landscape of London but also to pilot its use in urban administration and everyday transactions.

The LONDON token, championed by mayoral candidate Brian Benedict Rose, aims to revolutionize the local political and economic landscape, enabling its use for transportation, council payments, and parking charges. Funded through a 1% tax on financial sector profits, the initiative seeks to provide all London residents with equitable access to financial activities, positioning London as a leading crypto capital.

Beyond its practical applications, Rose plans aims to enhance financial literacy and empower Londoners financially. By partnering with crypto leaders and establishing an education platform, the initiative seeks to educate residents on digital wallets, asset purchase, and blockchain participation, targeting all demographics.

 

Enhancing Universal Access

The proposal, part of the broader mayoral campaign, not only introduces cryptocurrency innovation but also strives for universal financial literacy and access. The integration of the LONDON token into the London infrastructure aims to enhance domestic financial literacy and empowerment.

The reception of this proposal among Londoners remains uncertain, and its impact on the economic future of London and the monetary relationship between residents and their city remains to be seen. However, its emergence in political discourse signals a growing acceptance of digital financial solutions at the local level, potentially inspiring confidence in cities worldwide.

 

April 11,2024

Solana Drama Continues As MarginFi Leader Resigns

Longtime MarginFi leader Edgar Pavlovsky has stepped down amidst various reports of internal discord at mrgn, which is the builder of the protocol. The former CEO of MarginFi resigned on Wednesday as internal fissures at the major Solana DeFi project became public.

Pavlovsky cited disagreements with internal and external practices as reasons for his resignation. MarginFi experienced a tumultuous day with significant capital outflows following the departure of Pavlovsky.

 

The Pressure Is Mounting

The protocol is under intense pressure to launch a new crypto asset for its users. The pressure stems via Telegram, X, and various other sources. In addition, a lot of individuals feel as if they have been farmed for TVL without actually receiving the airdrop which they would have expected through a points program.

MarginFi, MacBrennan, and mrgn had little to say about when, if at all, they would launch a governance token that decentralizes decision-making. Such an asset would theoretically allow holders to vote on operations concerning MarginFi. If it were airdropped to users, it would most likely result in a windfall for the thousands of point earners who have farmed MarginFi since July 2023.

 

Damage Control

The company assured users that operations would continue unaffected despite the leadership transition. MarginFi had faced issues with its withdrawal function and a lack of communication regarding reward payouts, leading to dissatisfaction among some users. Pavlovsky acknowledged organizational shortcomings as a primary issue.

Now that Edgar has stepped down, the future of MarginFi is uncertain, with potential successors like MacBrennan Peet emerging. Solend, a competitor, capitalized on these struggles by offering an airdrop to users who switched to their platform. Moreover, the future plans of MarginFi regarding a governance token remain unclear. Despite the upheaval, the collaborative event between MarginFi and Cypher, mtnDAO, will proceed as scheduled. Pavlovsky expressed a willingness to reflect and evolve following his resignation.

 

April 11,2024

Uniswap Could Be Sued By The United States SEC Soon

The SEC recently initiated legal proceedings against UniSwap (UNI) with the aim of impeding the rapid expansion of the DeFi sector. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has served a Wells Notice to Uniswap, the primary platform in decentralized finance (DeFi), notifying the company of its intention to initiate legal action.

 

Another Investigation

Uniswap is currently under investigation by the SEC. The specific allegations against Uniswap Labs, the entity behind the Uniswap protocol but lacking control over it, remain unclear. However, drawing on recent lawsuits against other cryptocurrency firms such as Coinbase, it is possible that the SEC may assert that Uniswap Labs is offering unregistered securities to the public or operating without registration as a broker or exchange.

Recently, Uniswap announced that its protocol has facilitated over $2 trillion in transactions, indicating the increasing interest from mainstream finance in this technology. Sources close to Uniswap Labs informed Fortune that the company is gearing up for a legal battle in court, asserting that its decision to operate transparently in New York rather than offshore underscores its legitimacy.

 

Fighting Back

In response to the litigation threat by the SEC, UniSwap founder Hayden Adams confirmed that Uniswap Labs indeed received a Wells notice courtesy of the SEC. Hayden went on to say that he is not taken aback, but rather, he is simply infuriated, frustrated, and ready to defend both Uniswap and its community.

However, the founder continued, it has become evident over time that the SEC has opted to target reputable organizations like Uniswap and Coinbase instead of establishing clear and informed regulations. Meanwhile, entities like FTX have been overlooked. This legal battle will likely extend over years, possibly reaching the Supreme Court, with the future of financial technology and the crypto sector hanging in the balance.

Hayden concluded his statement by stating that together, the community can emerge victorious and that the pursuit of freedom is indeed worth fighting for.

 

April 10,2024

Binance Gets Banned In The Philippines As Local Users Granted Grace Period

The recent prohibition imposed by the Philippines Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Binance has sparked concern among Filipino crypto investors regarding the status of their digital assets. According to Attorney Paolo Ong, representing the SEC, the ban forms part of broader regulatory measures aimed at ensuring compliance, encompassing not only Binance but also other platforms operating without adherence to regulations.

 

A Major Crackdown

The situation surrounding Binance reflects the wider regulatory crackdown on crypto exchanges in the Philippines, with about 14 platforms barred in 2023 for similar non-compliance issues. Ong stressed that the SEC is not solely targeting Binance, indicating a uniform approach to safeguarding investors.

In a similar context, eToro received warnings for lacking necessary registrations and licenses, echoing regulatory challenges faced by Binance. Both platforms were flagged for operating without SEC approval, underscoring the importance of adhering to regulatory standards in the region. Regarding concerns of Binance users regarding accessing their funds, Ong mentioned the existence of a grace period initiated through a November advisory, providing ample time for users to transfer their assets from the platform.

 

Mixed Opinions

The SEC is in the process of drafting regulations to regulate the burgeoning crypto transactions in the Philippines, which amounted to $80 billion in 2023. The establishment of the Innovation Office aims to educate the public on the risks and opportunities associated with new financial technologies, while finalizing the regulatory framework.

Despite the clear stance of the SEC, neither Binance nor eToro has sought a license to operate in the Philippines, indicating a gap in efforts to comply with local financial regulations. While some would claim that this situation underscores the commitment by the SEC to protecting investors and ensuring that financial platforms operate within the confines of the legal framework, others believe that this is simply another attempt by the authorities to curb freedom and financial independence, two aspects which the cryptocurrency community deem crucial.

 

April 09,2024

Spot BTC ETFs Being Chased By Chinese Equity Funds Via Hong Kong

Harvest Fund Management, along with several prominent Chinese equity funds, has reportedly filed requests for spot BTC ETFs. Chinese mainland-based equity funds are said to have submitted applications for introducing spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) via their Hong Kong subsidiaries. This development coincides with a month-long upsurge in cryptocurrency prices and heightened endeavors by Hong Kong to position itself as a global fintech center.

 

Chinese Equity Funds Seek Bitcoin ETFs

As per Security Times, a Chinese state-owned newspaper, not all the applying companies have been disclosed. Nonetheless, it is confirmed that the Hong Kong branch of Harvest Fund Management is among those seeking approval by the Securities & Futures Commission (SFC) of Hong Kong since January. In December 2022, the branch launched futures crypto ETFs, marking the inaugural futures crypto ETF development in Asia. The SFC had authorized virtual asset futures ETFs for public offering on October 31st, 2022.

In the meantime, the Hong Kong division of China Asset Management, a major Chinese asset management company, has purportedly engaged in a cooperation agreement with HashKey, a licensed crypto exchange in Hong Kong. This partnership aims to jointly promote and advance initiatives related to Web3 within the country. Although a concrete timeline for spot Bitcoin ETFs in Asia has not been announced, industry insiders suggest that relevant applications could emerge as early as this quarter.

 

Growth In Hong Kong

In December, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the SFC announced their readiness to consider applications for spot crypto ETFs. Subsequently, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission approved the first spot Bitcoin ETF in January of this year. Furthermore, the largest Bitcoin futures ETF in Hong Kong, namely the CSOP Bitcoin Futures ETF, saw a fivefold increase in assets under management over the past five months, reaching just over $100 million.

Hong Kong is striving to position itself as a leading global crypto hub. At the opening ceremony of the 2024 Hong Kong Web3 Carnival, Edmond Huang, Deputy Secretary of the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau of Hong Kong, emphasized renewed commitment by local authorities toward amending relevant laws to subject over-the-counter (OTC) trading of virtual assets to formal regulatory oversight. Additionally, the city aims to empower intermediary institutions to provide various virtual asset services, including futures and ETF trading, highlighting its efforts to embrace and regulate the growing virtual asset sector.

 

April 09,2024

Critics Lambast Cardano But Charles Hoskinson Remains Optimistic

Although the price movement for ADA, the native token for Cardano, has remained relatively stagnant, founder and CEO Charles Hoskinson remains optimistic. Still, critics suggest that investors have shifted their focus elsewhere. According to Charles, individuals who emerge successful concentrate on the long run, and that is exactly what Cardano plans to do.

While Hoskinson shrugged off the criticisms, skeptics argue that his continued emphasis on principles and technical prowess is not sufficient in an industry dominated by memes and flashy projects. Charles, on the other hand, believes that there is more to a viable project in this industry than just blindly following current trends and copying others.

 

Is Cardano Facing Extinction?

Influencer Ben Armstrong spearheaded the concerns in a recent video pondering whether Cardano is obsolete. Despite expressing admiration for both the project and its founder, Armstrong acknowledged that other layer 1 blockchains, such as Solana and Avalanche, are advancing in terms of price gains and user adoption.

Although Armstrong clarified that he has not abandoned Cardano, he suggested that the new wave of retail investors are attracted to more trendy and unconventional projects, which Cardano does not necessarily represent. Similarly, Cyber Capital founder Justin Bons argued that Cardano lacks significant advantages, even failing to uphold the decentralization narrative it clings to. Rather than succumbing to criticism, Hoskinson appeared optimistic about Cardano, stating that the project holds all the cards concerning scalability, governance, and innovation.

 

Time For Upgrades

Hoskinson highlighted several eagerly anticipated upgrades on the Cardano roadmap as evidence of continued progression. Among them is the forthcoming Chang hard fork, which will introduce on-chain community governance, and Ouroboros Leios, representing a significant step forward in addressing the blockchain trilemma, according to Hoskinson.

In essence, Hoskinson argued that successful projects are built on solid fundamentals, supported by a respectful community. Despite his optimism, discontent among Cardano supporters continues to grow, with many feeling that the project is falling behind rival layer 1 blockchains. While the exact reasons remain unclear, many attribute the issue to perceived deficiencies in marketing efforts.

Regardless, whether one is a staunch ADA supporter or views the project skeptically, Hoskinson evidently believes in Cardano and anticipates the market recognizing its value in the long term. The upcoming Chang hard fork, marking the Voltaire era, introduces community governance, allowing ADA holders to vote on critical proposals.

 

April 09,2024

Fundraising Deals - April 2nd To April 9th, 2024

Mezo and Monad Labs both made waves with their recent funding rounds, raising $21,000,000 and $225,000,000 respectively, showcasing growing investor confidence in blockchain projects. For Mezo, Multicoin Capital and Draper Associates were the main investors, with Pantera Capital leading the charge. Paradigm was the lead investor for Monad Labs.

 

Yield Guild Games (YGG) secured strategic backing, reflecting the rising prominence of GameFi ventures in the market. Elsewhere, Lumoz and Ritual raised $6,000,000 and $2,000,000 respectively, underlining the continued interest in blockchain infrastructure and services.

 

QuantAMM garnered $1,850,000 in pre-seed funding, emphasizing the burgeoning potential of decentralized finance initiatives. Elsewhere, both Spotlight and Cellula raised $2,000,000 each, indicating a diverse range of investments across social and gaming sectors.

 

Other notable names included Zulu Network which raised $3,000,000, Zeus Network which raised $8,000,000, IoTeX which raised a whopping $50,000,000, and LightLink which raised $1,700,000.

 

These investments signal a promising future for blockchain innovation across various sectors. Excited to witness the continued growth and evolution of these projects! Be sure to follow CryptoWeekly for all the latest information on crypto, blockchain, AI, and more.

April 08,2024

Roman Storm Receives Support By Three Crypto Advocacy Entities

As per recent filings, three prominent cryptocurrency advocacy entities have affirmed their backing of Roman Storm, the developer behind the cryptocurrency mixer Tornado Cash, who is currently facing allegations by the US Department of Justice (DOJ). The Blockchain Association and Coin Center DeFi Education Fund both submitted amicus briefs on April 5th in support of Storm's motion to dismiss the charges leveled against him.

Storm, an American national and one of the creators of the platform, was indicted alongside Roman Semenov, who is currently missing. Moreover, the co-founder of the crypto mixer, Alexey Pertsev, is undergoing trial in the Netherlands. Storm was arrested by US authorities for his involvement with Tornado Cash, and along with other individuals, he was charged with operating an illicit money transfer business and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

 

Clarity Is Key

The Blockchain Association criticized the characterization of Tornado Cash by the DOJ as an illicit money transmission operation. They argue that the platform lacks control over the assets of their users, as required by FinCEN regulations, and therefore should not be classified as such. This perspective challenges the legal basis of one of the main charges against Storm and his associates.

On the other hand, the DeFi Education Fund questioned the invocation by the DOJ concerning the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) in the case of Storm. They argue that such an interpretation could unfairly hold developers accountable for how others use their software and potentially stifle innovation in the software development sector. The Fund warned that this interpretation of the IEEPA could have severe consequences.

 

Defending Tornado Cash Devs

Addressing the charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering, the amicus brief by Coin Center argued that Tornado Cash primarily serves as a privacy tool rather than a conduit for illicit activities. They draw an analogy between the use of cars by criminals and the use of computers by individuals, asserting that developers cannot be held responsible for all user actions.

Furthermore, Coin Center highlighted the efforts by Tornado Cash developers to block known espionage actors when it comes to accessing the service. They argue that this demonstrates a commitment to responsible oversight and contradicts allegations that the developers were indifferent to any and all malicious usage of the platform.

 

April 08,2024

El Salvador Looks To Offer Citizenship To Highly Skilled Professionals

Nayib Bukele, the President of El Salvador, revealed a strategy to provide 5,000 complimentary passports to highly skilled professionals globally, highlighting its potential impact on the future of the nation. The development unfolded when Bukele announced via X that El Salvador aims to offer 5,000 free passports, valued at $5 billion in their passport program, to proficient scientists, engineers, doctors, artists, and thinkers via international locations.

 

The Perks Of Relocating

The President stressed that this accounts for less than 0.1% of the El Salvador population, assuring no complications in granting them full citizenship, including voting rights. Additionally, he pledged zero taxes and tariffs on relocating families and assets, encompassing items of commercial value such as equipment, software, and intellectual property.

This initiative is significant considering the fact that the El Salvador passport currently stands at 38th in the Henley Passport Index, providing visa-free access to 136 destinations all over the world, including numerous countries across both Western Europe as well as South America.

 

Becoming A Global Destination

The decision aligns with the recent endeavors made by President Bukele to attract foreign investment and talent. Previously, the local Congress passed a migration law facilitating expedited citizenship for foreigners who contribute Bitcoin to various social and economic development projects in the country.

Moreover, El Salvador made history by becoming the first country to adopt Bitcoin as a legal tender, a move which sent shockwaves reverberating across the globe. Now, the latest announcement by President Bukele is being viewed as a continuation of these efforts to position El Salvador as a global center for innovation and talent.