FTX Hack Causes $417 Million Loss, Bankman-Fried Arrested

19. January 2023

• FTX reported that more than $415 million worth of crypto was hacked in November 2020.
• Alameda Research disclosed that $2 million in cryptocurrency belonging to them was also stolen.
• Sam Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas last month and was accused of moving more than $1.5 million using accounts from his crypto exchange’s trading arm, Alameda Research.

The crypto market has been suffering lately, and the situation was exacerbated in November 2020 when the crypto exchange FTX disintegrated, leading to a cascade of events. After the collapse, it was reported that FTX had been hacked and more than $415 million worth of crypto had been stolen.

The exchange was able to recover more than $5 billion worth of liquid assets which would then be used to pay off creditors. However, Alameda Research, a hedge fund, disclosed that $2 million in cryptocurrency belonging to them was also stolen. This latest hack has caused questions to be raised about the trust of creditors in the platform.

Adding to the chaos, it was recently announced that the CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, was arrested in the Bahamas last month on several charges that could put him behind bars for up to 115 years. This news was followed by Bankman-Fried allegedly moving more than $1.5 million using accounts from his crypto exchange’s trading arm, Alameda Research.

Though the Department of Justice is looking into this incident, the individual or group behind the hack has not been identified. The crypto community has expressed concern and suspicion about Bankman-Fried’s alleged actions. Nonetheless, the exchange is trying to rebuild trust with its customers, with Bankman-Fried himself promising to refund all users affected by the hack.

The events surrounding FTX have caused much confusion and disruption in the crypto market. It remains to be seen how the exchange and its CEO will move forward, but it’s clear that the incident has had a lasting impact on the community.

Coinbase Cuts 1,000 Jobs to Survive Crypto Winter

11. January 2023

1. Coinbase (COIN) is letting go of 1,000 employees as part of a critical strategy to weather down the crypto winter.
2. The decision to reduce headcount was made after planning for 2023 and was due to the collapse of the crypto exchange FTX.
3. The layoffs represent a 25% reduction in the company’s operating expenses.

Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange, is letting go of approximately 1,000 employees as part of a critical strategy to weather the current crypto winter. This is the third round of layoffs for Coinbase, which was founded in 2012 and has survived multiple bear markets, but is now facing the first crypto winter that coincides with a macroeconomic downturn.

The headcount reduction was made after careful planning for 2023 and was largely due to the sudden collapse of crypto exchange FTX. FTX was one of the most prominent players in the crypto industry and its bankruptcy filing in late 2022 had a negative impact on many projects. Coinbase anticipates that other crypto companies and projects will be affected by FTX’s collapse in the coming months, and the decision to cut down their staff was made to protect the company from further contagion.

Brian Armstrong, Coinbase’s CEO, explained the decision to reduce headcount and the motivations behind it. Armstrong said that as part of the process, the company “will be shutting down several projects where we have a lower probability of success.” The layoffs represent a 25% reduction in the company’s operating expenses. Affected teams were given communication about the decision earlier today.

Coinbase is confident that its strategy to ride out the crypto winter will ultimately benefit the company in the long run. Armstrong said that the company’s other projects will continue, and that the decisions made will help Coinbase “weather the storm and come out the other side stronger.”

Huobi Global Layoffs: Justin Sun Confirms 20% of Staff Fired

7. January 2023

• Justin Sun, rumored to be the shadow owner of Huobi Global, confirmed that the crypto exchange was laying off a significant portion of its workforce.
• This news followed rumors circulating in the crypto community, all of which concluded that Huobi was reportedly insolvent.
• Justin Sun told Reuters via text message that Huobi had indeed laid off 20% of its staff, which was estimated to be around 300 workers.

In recent news, Justin Sun, the founder of TRON and rumored to be the shadow owner of Huobi Global, has confirmed that the crypto exchange is laying off a significant portion of its workforce. This news follows the numerous rumors circulating in the crypto community, all of which concluded that the exchange was reportedly insolvent.

The rumors started when employees were asked to take their salary payments in stablecoins such as USDC or risk being fired. This was followed by a tweet which included screenshots that the exchange had shut down its communication channels for employees, leading many to believe that some people were let go.

Justin Sun finally confirmed the rumors when he sent a text message to Reuters on Friday morning, stating that Huobi had indeed laid off 20% of its staff. This was estimated to be around 300 workers, and Sun referred to this move as a “structural adjustment”.

The news of Huobi’s layoffs has come as a surprise to many in the crypto community, as the exchange has been one of the major players in the industry for many years. It remains to be seen if Huobi will be able to survive this restructuring, and what the future holds for the exchange and its employees.

Lesser Known Coins Lead the Crypto Market: ALGO and OKB Shine in 2021

• Bitcoin and Ethereum are slow to gain steam, while lesser known digital coins are managing to steal the spotlight.
• Algorand (ALGO) is up by 10.2% over the last seven days, and 6.2% over the last two weeks.
• OKB (OKB) is trading at $26.79 and is sitting on a weekly gain of over 11%.

As the first week of 2023 draws to a close, the crypto market is still adjusting to the new year, with Bitcoin and Ethereum yet to pick up some steam. However, despite their slow start, some lesser known digital coins have managed to make a name for themselves by outperforming the heavyweights.

Algorand (ALGO) is one such coin, which currently has an overall valuation of $1.30 billion. According to tracking from Coingecko, at the time of writing, the coin was changing hands at $0.1829 and is up by 10.2% over the last seven days. Despite being stuck in a bearish momentum recently, ALGO is starting the year strong, as evidenced by its 6.2% increase in value for the previous two weeks. This altcoin is being considered by some analysts as one of the non-EVM chains with tremendous potential.

Another crypto asset that is experiencing an impressive surge in value is OKB (OKB). At press time, the altcoin is trading at $26.79 and is sitting on a weekly gain of over 11%, figures by CoinMarketCap show. On longer time frames, the crypto asset managed to go up by 22.5% during the last 14 days and by 27.1% on its monthly performance. Moreover, OKB tallied a 1% value hike on a year-to-date basis, veering away from the norm of dips and losses.

The crypto market is still very young, but with the current trends, it looks like the new year will be full of interesting developments. While Bitcoin and Ethereum remain the most popular digital assets, it’s worth keeping an eye on some of the lesser known coins that are slowly but surely making their way to the top.

Risky but Rewarding: Is it Time to Invest in BONK Coin?

5. January 2023

• BONK is a new meme coin that is on the Solana blockchain and has seen a rapid increase in its price over the last week.
• It is possible that the coin has reached or is nearing its peak, and late investors could be left holding the bag once it begins its descent.
• However, there is also a chance that the coin could continue to surge, as has been seen with other meme coins such as SHIB and DOGE.

Cryptocurrency has been around for years, but in the last few months, meme coins have been taking the crypto world by storm. A new meme coin called BONK has just entered the race, and it is quickly cementing itself as the most successful meme coin to come out of the Solana blockchain ecosystem.

The coin has seen a rapid increase in its price over the last week, with trading volume crossing $16 million in the last 24 hours. This surge was largely due to excessive shilling on social media from influencers with large followings, resulting in the FOMO taking over the coin.

Given the current market climate with unfavorable conditions, some investors may be wondering if it is still a good time to enter the BONK game. Unfortunately, there is no sure answer to this question, as it could go either way. On one hand, it is possible that the coin has reached or is nearing its peak, meaning that late investors could be left holding the bag once it begins its descent. On the other hand, it is also possible that the coin could continue to surge, as has been seen with other meme coins such as SHIB and DOGE in the past year.

Only time will tell what will happen with the BONK coin, and investors should remember to always do their own research before investing in any crypto asset. Despite the risk, investing in BONK could be a lucrative opportunity for those who are willing to take the chance.

Gemini Co-Founder Gives DCG Ultimatum: Return $900 Million by Jan 8th

• Gemini exchange and crypto lender Genesis, along with Digital Currency Group (DCG), have been involved in a heated dispute over the past couple of weeks.
• Cameron Winklevoss, co-founder of the Gemini exchange, has given an ultimatum to DCG to return $900 million owed to customers of Gemini.
• Cameron has given DCG until January 8 to return the funds, accusing the company of engaging in “bad faith stall tactics”.

The past few weeks have seen a heated dispute between the Gemini crypto exchange and crypto lender Genesis, along with its parent company Digital Currency Group (DCG). This dispute has now been taken to the next level, with Gemini co-founder Cameron Winklevoss issuing an ultimatum to DCG to return funds that are owed to customers of Gemini.

In a letter to DCG CEO Barry Silbert, Cameron demanded that the company return the $900 million owed to customers of Gemini. Cameron has given DCG until January 8 to return the funds, accusing the company of engaging in “bad faith stall tactics”. This comes after Genesis Trading paused withdrawals, stranding over 340,000 Gemini Ear users for more than a month.

According to the letter, the Gemini co-founder claims that he and the exchange have done everything they can to reach a consensual resolution with DCG, but that the company has been dragging its feet. Cameron also noted that he understands there are startup costs associated with any restructuring, but that it has become clear that DCG has been unwilling to negotiate in good faith.

The letter has caused a stir in the crypto industry, with many now speculating as to what the next move for DCG will be. Some believe that DCG will have no choice but to comply with Cameron’s demands, while others believe the company will try to negotiate a more favorable deal.

It remains to be seen how this situation will play out, but one thing is certain: the situation is escalating and the stakes are high. With millions of dollars on the line, the pressure is on DCG to act quickly and decisively. In the meantime, Gemini customers and creditors will be watching closely to see how this situation develops.

Square Enix to Double Down on Blockchain and Digital Assets by 2023

3. January 2023

• Square Enix, a legendary gaming studio, announced that it will further explore blockchain technology and digital assets by 2023.
• In the past year, Square Enix has explored non-fungible token (NFT) initiatives, which have seen positive feedback and good reception.
• The company’s president Yosuke Matsuda committed to focusing on “blockchain entertainment” and Web3.

Square Enix, a legendary gaming studio, has revealed that it will double down on blockchain technology and digital assets in 2023. This announcement follows the company’s exploration of non-fungible token (NFT) initiatives in the past year, which have seen positive feedback and good reception. The studio’s president Yosuke Matsuda has committed to focusing on “blockchain entertainment” and Web3.

The motivation behind this move is rooted in the spike in sales from mobile games, which has been trending to the upside since 2020. The net sales revenue from smart devices and PCs has become a bigger part of the company’s contribution, compared to physical game versus digital game sales. As part of the expansion in the blockchain space, Square Enix will launch an overseas entity dedicated to “issuing, managing, and investing our own tokens” and publishing games in countries with “wide cryptocurrency acceptance.”

The company believes that blockchain can provide new opportunities to power up the gaming and entertainment industry. It enables a new way to transact with digital assets, create unique experiences, and foster the development of new business models. Square Enix also plans to explore blockchain-based projects that would allow gamers to freely trade and exchange their digital assets, as well as create their own unique in-game items.

Square Enix is already working on a number of projects, such as the Dragon Quest X game powered by blockchain technology and the recently launched NFT marketplace. The company is also working on a blockchain-enabled mobile game that allows players to earn rewards as they play.

Square Enix is no stranger to blockchain technology and digital assets. It has been actively involved in the development of the technology since 2018 and has worked with a number of well-known blockchain companies, such as ConsenSys and IBM. The company has also launched its own blockchain-based game, Rise of the Necromancer.

As the blockchain industry continues to grow, Square Enix is confident that it will be able to provide more ways for gamers and entertainment fans to experience the benefits of the technology. With its focus on blockchain entertainment and Web3, the company is sure to remain at the forefront of the industry.

Crypto Holiday Special: Reflecting on 2021 & What’s Ahead

• Crypto Holiday Special is a conversation with multiple guests to reflect on the highs and lows of the crypto industry in 2021.
• Ben Lilly, Co-Founder of Jarvis labs, offers his perspective on the industry’s current state, the importance of using bear markets to build, and the maturation of the nascent class.
• Punt Casino offers 30 free spins to new players, and mBitcasino offers 5 BTC and 300 free spins to new players, and 15 BTC and 35.000 free spins every month.

The crypto industry has seen its highs and lows throughout 2021. While there have been some significant drops in the value of cryptocurrencies, there have been some bright spots as well. To provide some perspective on this turbulent year, Bitcoinist has launched a Crypto Holiday Special. This special will involve conversations with multiple guests to understand the highs and lows of the crypto industry this year, and what it might bring in the future.

Charles Dicken’s classic, “A Christmas Carol,” was used as an analogy to look into crypto from different angles, and to find common ground amongst different views. Ben Lilly, Co-Founder at Jarvis Labs, the on-chain analytics and token design firm tracking the crypto market, offered his views on the industry’s current state. According to Lilly, fundamentals have not changed much, and if anything, builders are building faster than ever before. He also noted that the bear market is a blessing to those that can weather it.

To provide some incentive for players, Punt Casino and mBitcasino have launched some special offers. Punt Casino offers 30 free spins to new players, while mBitcasino offers 5 BTC and 300 free spins to new players, and 15 BTC and 35.000 free spins every month.

The crypto industry has seen its share of ups and downs in 2021, but the Crypto Holiday Special looks to provide some insight on the industry’s current state and what it might bring in the future. With conversations with multiple guests and special offers from Punt Casino and mBitcasino, this holiday season has the potential to be a great one for the crypto industry.

Crypto Market Close to Bottoming Out: Crypto Holiday Special Gives Insight into 2023 Outlook

2. January 2023

• Bitcoinist launched a Crypto Holiday Special to look into the crypto industry in the spirit of Charles Dicken’s classic, “A Christmas Carol”
• We spoke with institutions to understand their perception of 2022 and their outlook for the coming months
• Material Indicators, a market data and analytics firm, stated that sentiment-wise, the crypto market is close to bottoming out

The crypto industry is always changing, with highs and lows being experienced throughout the years. This year, with 2022 coming to an end, Bitcoinist decided to launch a Crypto Holiday Special to provide some perspective on the crypto industry. To gain a better understanding of the highs and lows of this year, multiple guests were interviewed.

Inspired by Charles Dicken’s classic, “A Christmas Carol,” the Crypto Holiday Special looks into crypto from different angles, examining its possible trajectory for 2023 and finding common ground amongst the different views of an industry that may support the future of finances.

The panelists discussed the most significant difference for the crypto market today compared to Christmas 2021, beyond the price of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others. Material Indicators, a market data, and analytics firm dedicated to building trading tools for the nascent sector, stated that sentiment-wise, the crypto market is close to bottoming out.

Material Indicators and their team of analysts gauge market sentiment and liquidity, and try to read between the lines of what big players are doing to provide a clear view, absent of noise, about its conditions and possible direction. The team also mentioned that while they have yet to see tradfi (Traditional Finances) price in earnings contraction (~Q1’23) for the last leg down, they are already close to bottoming sentiment-wise.

With this Crypto Holiday Special, it’s hoped that more insight will be provided into the crypto industry, giving a better understanding of the highs and lows of this year, and providing guidance into what the future may hold.

NFT Market Sees Upturn in Trading Volume, But Sales Still Down

• The NFT market took a significant beating in the year 2022, with trading volumes down more than 94% from its peak.
• There has been an increase in NFT volume over the last month, with a 42% increase in trading volume in 30 days, and a more than 100% increase in the daily volume over the last week.
• Despite this upturn, the number of NFT sales has still nosedived in the last few days.

The Non-Fungible Token (NFT) market experienced a major slump in 2022, with trading volumes plummeting more than 94% from its peak. NFTs are highly illiquid assets, meaning that the market has been particularly volatile and prone to sudden drops in trading volume. This has been evidenced by the drastic decrease in trading volume over the last year.

However, recently there has been a rise in NFT trading volume. Data from IntoTheBlock shows that there has been a 42% increase in trading volume in 30 days, with daily trading volume at the start of December being $33 million, and by December 29, this figure had risen to $47 million.

In addition, the 7-day chart shows a more bullish movement, with a more than 100% increase in the daily volume over the last week. This has sparked hope for a resurgence in the NFT market, with investors and traders getting back into the market.

Unfortunately, despite this upturn, the number of NFT sales has still nosedived in the last few days. On Thursday there were 63,000 new sales, compared to Wednesday’s 123,000. This indicates that while the trading volume in dollar figures may be up, investors are still buying fewer NFTs overall.

It is therefore difficult to tell whether or not the NFT bull market is back in full swing. There have been signs of a resurgence in the NFT market, but the number of NFT sales continues to decline, suggesting that while the market may be recovering, it is still not as strong as it once was.

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