“Blue-chips” halve in value, free-to-mint “Goblintown” volume surges, Nike buys another ENS domain

“Blue-chip” nonfungible token (NFT) collections have seen their floor prices and market capitalization slide over the past 30 days, with some of the most well-recognized projects halving in value for these key metrics. Data collected on key Ethereum (ETH) NFT projects by DappRadar show the floor prices of established collections such as CryptoPunks, Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC), and Moonbirds, are at most down around 55% over 30 days. The MAYC is the worst off of the four with the floor price diving 55% to…

Swinburne Uni brings Web3 firms to class

Australia’s Swinburne University of Technology has partnered with two financial technology firms which will provide its students exposure to the financial technology and cryptocurrency business world. The partnership is between Swinburne and small business loan provider Judo Bank along with Banxa, a payment service provider with a fiat to crypto platform whose clients include Binance, KuCoin, and Trezor amongst others. Students of the university’s Master of Financial Technology (FinTech) course will be “exposed to real life examples and cases across the spectrum of financial services,” Dr. Dimitrios Salampasis Swinburne’s Director…

Developing countries love the Metaverse, rich nations not keen: WEF survey

Excitement for the Metaverse and virtual or augmented reality (VR/AR) is much greater in developing countries than in high-income countries according to a survey conducted for the World Economic Forum (WEF). Market research firm Ipsos released the results of the survey on May 25 showing the concept is now widely recognized: 52% of more than 21,000 adults surveyed across 29 countries are familiar with the Metaverse and 50% have positive feelings about engaging with it in daily life. China, India, Peru, Saudi Arabia, and Colombia were the top five countries…

Robinhood to launch a Web3 wallet, LimeWire inks deal with Universal and more

Popular trading platform Robinhood is creating a noncustodial crypto wallet that will be compatible with multiple blockchains. The wallet will be a standalone application with the ability to store nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and connect to NFT marketplaces. A promo video released for the wallet shows a demonstration using Ethereum-based NFTs. Trade and swap crypto with no network fees. A web3 wallet from us. Get early access: https://t.co/qonXj80BEB pic.twitter.com/qLjByPA4ty — Robinhood (@RobinhoodApp) May 17, 2022 The app is a significant step for the company in providing crypto services. Prior to January…

German BaFin official calls for ‘innovative’ EU-wide DeFi regulation

Birgit Rodolphe, an executive director at Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) has called for innovative and uniform regulation of the decentralized finance (DeFi) space throughout the European Union (EU). BaFin is Germany’s financial regulatory body responsible for regulating banks, insurance firms, and financial institutions including cryptocurrency companies. BaFin is the issuer of “crypto custody licenses,” a permit required for firms wanting to offer cryptocurrency services within Germany. In an article on BaFin’s website Rodolphe warned of the risks to consumers of the unregulated DeFi space and called for standardized…

Goldman Sachs and Barclays invest in UK crypto trading platform Elwood

Banking giants Goldman Sachs and Britain’s Barclays have joined a $70 million Series A funding round for the institutional crypto trading platform Elwood Technologies, founded by billionaire British hedge fund manager Alan Howard. Joining the round was crypto-friendly German bank Commerzbank, crypto investment manager Galaxy Digital, and Dawn Capital as reported by the Financial Times on May 15. The fundraising round valued the company at around $500 million according to the report. Despite the recent fall in crypto markets, Elwood said it’s betting that traditional financial institutions such as hedge…

Terrible crypto trader gets 42 months for fraud, claiming he was a total gun

A crypto trader who defrauded over 170 people was sentenced to 42 months in prison on May 11 for operating a series of cryptocurrency funds claiming to make big returns but in reality were losing money and instead operated as a Ponzi scheme. The DOJ said that 25 year old  Jeremy Spence had solicited millions through false representations, “including that Spence’s crypto trading had been extremely profitable when, in fact, Spence’s trading had been consistently unprofitable.” Spence, who operated the social media channels for a crypto investment scheme called “Coin…

Nigeria upgrades CBDC as crypto restrictions cripple fintech industry

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is moving ahead with plans to upgrade the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) to be used on a wider range of goods and services. It is also maintaining harsh crypto restrictions that cripple the country’s fintech sector. The CBN Branch Controller Bariboloka Koyor spoke at a campaign aiming to “sensitize” businesses to the eNaira at a market in the country’s most populous city of Lagos on May 9 according to a report from Vanguard. Koyor stated: “Starting from next week, there is going…

Argentina’s central bank steps in to block new crypto offerings from banks

The central bank of Argentina (BCRA) has put the kibosh on financial institutions offering crypto trading only days after two of the country’s largest banks signaled they were opening up to digital assets. On May 5 the BCRA said the move was to mitigate the risks crypto poses to users and “to the financial system as a whole” citing crypto’s high volatility, use in money laundering and absence of regulatory safeguards. The news came hot on the heels of an announcement on Monday from two of the countries largest banks,…

Kazakhstan ramps up power consumption reporting requirements for crypto miners

The government of Kazakhstan has laid out new reporting requirements for cryptocurrency mining operators with a keen eye on how the industry’s energy usage affects the local power grid. The order published by the country’s Minister of Digital Development earlier this week compels digital mining businesses to provide comprehensive information 30 days before starting operations. The electricity consumption and “technical specifications” for connection to the power grid must be provided before commencing operations. The amount and type of mining equipment used, the customs cargo declarations for that equipment and any…