the filter: the five most important stories in crypto

The coronavirus pandemic still haunts the markets, global economies face crippling downturns and gold has reached eight-year highs this week. Traders are now stacking their portfolios with physical precious metals and Bitcoin, as the colossal impact of Covid-19 crushes earnings and The Great Halvening approaches. On the regulatory side, governments and institutions hanker for broader-scope laws to cover cryptocurrencies.

EU must cover regulatory ‘blind spots’ in cryptocurrency

The European Parliament’s in-house think tank has recommended that the EU broaden the definition of cryptocurrency and expand the list of crypto businesses that are subject to the law. Researchers at the European Parliament Research Service noted a “massive growth” in the number of platform tokens, saying that providers should not only register with regulators and comply with anti-money laundering regulations like AMLD5, but that governments should devote much greater funds to mapping cryptocurrency mining.  Read more here.

more investors hoarding Bitcoin ahead of bullish halving, data shows

Bitcoin’s highly-anticipated halving event is now less than a month away, and crypto investors are holding on to their BTC in ever greater numbers. Data published by blockchain analytics firm Glassnode, reported in Coindesk, shows that the total number of coins held on exchanges has fallen to levels not seen since June 2019. Investors typically move their holdings onto exchanges to ready coins for sale when prices are expected to drop, and shift more BTC into their personal wallets when prices are expected to rise. Read more here.

XRP is 2020’s worst performing cryptoasset

Ripple had a 2019 to forget and the trend continues as we approach the end of Q1 2020. Research by analysts Messari shows why XRP is trading at historic lows of $0.18, has fallen out of the Top 5 cryptocurrencies on CryptoCompare and CoinmarketCap, and now sits behind the likes of BTC fork BitcoinSV in terms of volume. Earlier in the year CEO Brad Garlinghouse admitted Ripple would not be profitable or cash-flow positive without selling XRP, which has angered investors. Read more.

China’s central bank digital currency wallet revealed?

2020 will be the year of the Central Bank Digital Currency, with China spearheading the new technology. Covid-19 may have slowed down research by the People’s Bank of China, but the pandemic has accelerated overall progress to switch to non-cash currency. Screenshots published in local media appear to show the wallet that will hold the digital version of the yuan, with applications including the ability to make payments by scanning a barcode, sending money, and touching phones for p2p payments. Read more here.

G20 to set international rules for regulating stablecoins, Libra

Most crypto investors will recognise stablecoins like USDT or Tether, but the world’s largest 20 economies have Facebook’s Libra in mind when it comes to creating a ruleset for these systemically-important crypto products to become part of the wider financial system.

Ahead of the G20 meeting, the cross-governmental Financial Stability Board has put forward 10 high-level recommendations to establish a regulatory framework. They include proper reserve management, strict cybersecurity protocols and “robust systems for collecting and managing data”. Read more here.