Exploit During ETHDenver Reveals Experimental Nature of Decentralized Finance

Decentralized finance (DeFi) project bZx has suffered an attack in which a hacker successfully gamed multiple DeFi protocols to extract $350,000 from the platform, about 2 percent of the assets under management. In response, the company took down its lending and trading protocol Fulcrum at 7 AM UTC. The company was presenting at ETHDenver during the hack. The hackers took advantage of the company’s pricing oracle to trick the protocol into giving up the cash. bZx depended on only one oracle for pricing, according to sources. The firm, which has…

From Crypto Self-Custody to Music Rights, This Mother-Daughter Dev Team Does It All

Developer Cindy Zimmerman and her mother Judy Katzman are among the cryptocurrency community’s most quietly prolific builders. After learning about bitcoin in 2011, Katzman worked for the early exchange BitInstant and Zimmerman moved to Panama in 2012 to work with Erik Voorhees and the other founders behind the crypto exchange Coinapult. Because Zimmerman earned part of her salary in crypto, up to 50 percent at the peak, she quickly realized the need for cash on-and-off ramps. “There were a large amount of immigrants living in Panama that had to send…

CFTC Sues Alleged Crypto Ponzi Scammer for $500K Theft

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is suing an alleged Ponzi scammer on claims he and his company raised half a million dollars for cryptocurrency investments, which instead went to personal uses. According to a press release, Breonna Clark, otherwise known as Eliot Clark or Alexander Pak, and his firm Venture Capital Investments Ltd. and The Life Group allegedly raised $534,829 from 72 victims, promising to invest funds in bitcoin, altcoins and foreign currency contracts. Instead, some $400,000 in funds went to personal uses, including the purchase of a…

For Crypto Miners, Bitcoin’s Halving Could Mean a Doubling in Costs

Bitcoin investors speculate the upcoming halving could send prices skyrocketing to $90,000 or higher.  To the operators of high-speed computers used to mine for bitcoin, the halving looks more like a doubling — of costs. In a new report, the crypto-focused research firm TradeBlock estimates the average cost to mine a single bitcoin (BTC) could jump to $12,525 after the halving, expected in May. That’s nearly double the average cost of $6,851 now. Essentially, miners will have to run twice the number of computations, with a corresponding increase in electricity…

Steemit Sets Up Shop on Tron Network

Steemit, the blockchain-based social media platform where users can be paid to curate or create content, is partnering with the Tron Foundation to bring Steem dapps and users to Tron. The companies announced Friday that Tron and Steem developers will jointly be looking into migrating Steem products and users to the Tron network, and ultimately swapping the STEEM token for a new Tron-based version. No timeline for this migration was presented. Steem, which was originally founded by Dan Larimer and Ned Scott, claims to have more than 1 million users,…

Coinbase Commerce Integrates Dai Cryptocurrency for Merchant Payments

Coinbase’s merchant payments arm has added support for the dai stablecoin, bringing together online retail and decentralized finance (DeFi). MakerDAO announced Thursday Coinbase Commerce had integrated dai as a payment method, opening the cryptocurrency up to affiliated online merchants and online commerce platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce. The integration will introduce “merchants to a growing segment of the cryptocurrency market, allowing them to bridge the gap between DeFi dapp entrepreneurs and their own “real world” businesses,” according to the blog post. Coinbase Commerce is a free-to-use service for online retailers,…

OKEx Partners With Bain-Backed Crypto Exchange to Launch Leveraged Futures in India

An Indian cryptocurrency exchange has partnered with Malta-based trading platform OKEx to offer futures products specifically for the subcontinent market. Mumbai-based CoinDCX announced Friday that it had formed a strategic partnership under which OKEx will help it develop a new derivative facility – known as DCXfutures – in return for providing OKEx with a foothold in the Indian market. Using CoinDCX’s new derivatives facility, Indian investors will be able to trade futures, with leverage of up to 15x provided by OKEx, on nine cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, ether, XRP, and litecoin.…

US Intelligence Officials Are Funding Research on Dollar-Crushing ‘Black Swan’ Events

The U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) wants to sponsor a post-doc researcher to study what would happen if the U.S. dollar lost its status as the world’s reserve currency. In a job listing posted late last year, the agency called for applicants from the U.S. who have a background in economics. The deadline to apply is Feb. 28. The agency said the research – the first of its kind for the intelligence community’s post-doc program – could help the U.S. prepare for “black swan” events that would threaten…

Nasdaq, Morgan Stanley Trading Vets Build Startup to Unite Crypto Market Price Ranges

A group of trading vets from NASDAQ, Visa and Morgan Stanley say they’ve built a liquidity solution for the world’s disparate cryptocurrency markets.  After 18 months of development, their project, Apifiny, came out of stealth Wednesday with a new platform targeting exchanges hampered by low liquidity: ExOne. It is an emerging finances back-end tool tied to technological advances in traditional markets, which, despite their off-chain standing, have myriad advantages over crypto exchanges. “These marketplaces are highly fragmented and remarkably inefficient,” said Co-Chairman David Wield, a former vice chair of NASDAQ.…

Novogratz’s Crypto Investment Firm Galaxy Digital Shrinks Workforce 15%

Galaxy Digital, the cryptocurrency merchant bank founded by Wall Street veteran Michael Novogratz, has laid off 13 people, roughly 15 percent of its workforce, people familiar with the situation said. The layoffs occurred across the board in early January, and all of the New York-based firm’s business divisions – asset management, trading, principal investments, and advisory services – were left intact. In other words, no business line was singled out or discontinued. Nearly 80 people remain on staff. The company is hiring for several open positions, one source close to…