26 May 2022

The Friday Focus: Issue 35

Welcome to our Friday newsletter. Here you find the most exciting crypto content from the previous week - curated for you by us.
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Weekly crypto happenings (May 20 - May 27)
We continue seeing significant developments in crypto policy globally, with some jurisdictions and regulators being more positively inclined than others. Ted Cruz definitely belongs in the former category, now stating that he 'wants Texas to be the oasis on planet Earth for bitcoin and crypto'.Paraguay sees opportunities for monetizing its vast hydro resources by mining bitcoin and moves forward with a bill regulating crypto mining and trading. Kazakhstan wants to expand its crypto industry, cooperating with Binance in developing a crypto strategy. The Central African Republic announces plans to launch a crypto hub just a few weeks after making bitcoin legal tender. Portugal's parliament rejects a crypto tax proposal, so the country will continue being a crypto tax haven for now.ETF providers have still not given up on launching a spot bitcoin ETF in the US. Ark and 21Shares make their second spot bitcoin ETF application. In addition, FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried pitches CFTC on a new clearing model that, according to ETF experts, could be a backdoor to a spot bitcoin ETF launch.With the global elite of decision-makers meeting at the World Economic Forum, we see increased discussions regarding CBDCs, particularly their relations to stablecoins. USDC issuer Circle asked the US Fed not to create a CBDC, as they believe their stablecoin is a sufficient alternative to a digital dollar. Wall Street's interests align with Circle here, as they state that a digital dollar spells destruction for the banking sector.Even though the crypto market has been in free fall this year, funding has not dried up for private crypto companies. Ethereum layer-2 developer StarkWare raises $100M at an $8B valuation, blockchain developer LayerZero Labs seeks funding at a $3B valuation, and crypto financing firm Babel Finance hits a $2B valuation. The WeWork founder is at it again, raising $70M for a carbon credit crypto project. Meanwhile, a16z announces a new $4.5B crypto fund.
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