Mars, Tether, Vaults and Wallets, Andre Quits!
The Voyage To Mars
It was a long trip for me, but I came around to a new respect for DeFi, particularly the projects being build in the Terra/Luna ecosystem.
Mars Protocol @mars_protocolWhen Mars Protocol fully launches on or around March 7, 2022, the Fields of Mars will support three leveraged yield farming strategies: 1. ANC-UST 2. LUNA-UST 3. MIR-UST Here’s an example of how they’ll work and their launch parameters 👇 https://t.co/ASxIvbqOz8
Bipartisan members of congress sent a letter asking questions about stablecoin Tether (UST). Tether has endured a number of issues over the years. And in any event, the biggest news in stablecoin early in the year was that stablecoin provider Circle's USDC was quickly overtaking UST's market share of crypto exchange transactions.
To The Moon, Alice!
In the last few weeks, the algorithmic stablecoin Terra (UST) has been gaining market share on both of them (in tandem with a spike in its related token Luna). Terra and Luna growth is mostly linked to DeFi applications at present, mainstream crypto exchange adoption will likely lead to more rapid adoptions of the Terra stablecoin (& related versions of wrapped UST on other blockchains). Just yesterday FTX (parent) announced they will start accepting UST on their exchange.
What Do We Want? A Bitcoin Spot ETF. When Do We Want It? Now!
Coinbase and BlockFi both submitted comment letters to the SEC today in support of a Bitcoin Spot ETF. It is still unlikely the SEC will approve such an ETF anytime soon, despite ETF approvals in Canada and soon to be Bitcoin ETFs approved in Australia. The SEC's stance requires some extensive evidence showing the Bitcoin spot market can't be manipulated, some suggest the SEC's approval threshold here is higher than for prior ETF approvals. Digital Currency Group announced a buyback for Grayscale trusts, including its BTC trust, which continues to trade at a deep discount to the value of BTC pending approval of Grayscale's spot ETF application.
You Don’t Have to Go Home, But You Can’t Stay Here
Crypto exchanges are repeatedly in the news regarding Russian sanctions. Coinbase announced today that the firm was blocking 25,000 users from its site based in Russia. This is not the blanket ban on Russian users that Ukraine has requested, but instead is a list curated using Coinbase's analysis of likely sanctioned parties.
Lock it Down
Jake Chervinsky, a leading crypto lawyer and head of policy at the Blockchain Association, warned that Russian hackers may start targeting crypto exchanges and that it would be advisable for exchange customers to custody their crypto in hard wallets off exchange.
If you don’t know how to do that, but a Ledger Nano, trust me!
The Many Myths of Sanctions
The former head of FinCen does some mythbusting about the notion that crypto will be used to evade sanctions.
Binance, which boasts the largest volume of global crypto trading, has added a new crypto/fiat payment provider Bifinity to make it easier for new users to enter and exit the exchange with fiat. Bitfinity has a relationship with another Binance affiliate, Digivault. Though the UK FSA, which regulates Binance affiliate Digivault, appeared skeptical of the partnership the FSA announced today that FSA lacked the authority to vet the relationship. The SEC's investigation of Binance US's relationship with two allegedly affiliated market makers operating on the exchange is ongoing.
Take this job, and shove it!
Leading DeFi application developer Andre Cronje announced on Sunday that he is retiring. Ecosystems and projects with which he was associated or founded were quick to remind DeFi users that he leaves behind large teams of developers. The token price of applications he founded, like the auto market maker Solidly, Yearn, and Fantom ecosystem DeFi applications like Tomb, nevertheless all took a major hit over the last 24 hours as a result. Solidly was down 70% at one point. This is a reminder that "key personnel" risk remains a significant one in digital asset markets, as crypto users gravitate to and away from the reputation of individual coders associated with projects.