WuBlockchain Weekly: Bitcoin Spot ETF Experiences Net Outflows, Surge in User Count for World APP, Nigeria’s Cryptocurrency Ban and Top10 News

WuBlockchain
7 min readFeb 23, 2024

1. Bitcoin Spot ETF Witnesses Net Outflows Following Net Inflows on the 17th link

On February 21st, the grayscale ETF GBTC experienced a net outflow of $199 million, while the bitcoin spot ETF with the highest net inflow was the iShares Bitcoin ETF IBIT, with a net inflow of $96.52 million for the day. This net inflow has been decreasing continuously for the past 4 trading days. As of the time of drafting, the total net asset value of the bitcoin spot ETF stands at $37.13 billion, with an ETF net asset ratio (market value as a proportion of total bitcoin market value) reaching 3.71%. The cumulative net inflow historically has amounted to $5.27 billion.

2. MicroStrategy Founder: No Plans to Sell Any MicroStrategy Bitcoin in the Short Term link

Michael Saylor, the founder of MicroStrategy, conveyed during his interview with Bloomberg Television on Tuesday, his intention to refrain from selling any of MicroStrategy’s Bitcoin holdings in the short term, considering Bitcoin as an exit strategy from traditional ecosystems. He highlighted that the spot ETF has paved a path for institutional capital to flow into the Bitcoin ecosystem, catalyzing the digital transformation of capital. Each day witnesses hundreds of millions of dollars transitioning from traditional ecosystems into digital systems. Furthermore, Michael Saylor asserted that Bitcoin surpasses assets such as gold, real estate, and the S&P index in quality.

3. S&P: Approval of Proposed Ethereum Spot ETF May Increase Concentration Risks for Ethereum link

According to the analysis by S&P Global Ratings, the proposed Ether spot ETF, if approved, could potentially increase the concentration risk within the Ethereum ecosystem. S&P analysts Andrew O’Neill and Alexandre Birry stated in a report released on Tuesday: “The inclusion of a US spot Ether ETF backed by staking may become sizable enough to alter the concentration of validators in the Ethereum network, for better or for worse. Therefore, understanding how ETF issuers’ choices drive concentration risk is crucial.” Analysts anticipate that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission could potentially approve the Ether spot ETF as early as May this year — marking the first deadline for the approval of such funds.

4. Vitalik’s Perspectives This Week

a. Vitalik: It’s Worth Adding Some Complex L1 Features to Ease the Code Burden on L2 link

Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, tweeted expressing that his confidence in the concept of “simplify L1 even at the cost of making L2 more complex” has decreased by approximately threefold compared to five years ago. He believes that when weighing between L1 and L2, it’s unclear whether the bug risk in L2 is better than L1. While consensus failures in L1 may lead to temporary chaos, bugs in L2 could result in permanent loss of significant funds. Therefore, he suggests adding some complexity to L1 features to alleviate the code burden on L2, while keeping it simple.

b. Vitalik: Very Excited About Verkle Trees link

Vitalik expressed great anticipation for Verkle Trees, which will enable stateless validator clients. This advancement allows staking nodes to operate with minimal hard drive space and achieve almost instant synchronization, significantly enhancing the user experience for individual stakers. Verkle Trees also benefit user-oriented light clients. They represent a data structure similar to MPT in adopting a tree-like structure, yet a key distinction lies in each node using a specialized hash, known as a vector commitment, to commit to its child nodes. Furthermore, Vitalik Buterin also expressed excitement about the applications of AI-assisted code formal verification and vulnerability detection. Presently, the most significant technical risk for Ethereum potentially lies in bugs within the code, making any breakthrough technology in this area remarkable.

5. World APP Surpasses 1 Million Daily Active Users link

The inaugural wallet, World APP, developed by Worldcoin, surpassed a historic milestone this Sunday, exceeding one million users. Founded by OpenAI co-founder Sam Altman, Worldcoin’s token WLD witnessed a significant surge in price recently, propelled by the introduction of the AI model Sora, soaring over 140% in the past week to surpass $8. Notably, the bankrupt Alameda Research holds 25 million WLD, valued at $168 million, making it its most valuable asset by current net worth. Teneo: 3AC liquidator address (0xC7…3741) holds 75 million WLD, valued at approximately $550 million, also ranking as its most valuable asset by current net worth.

6. Germany’s Frankfurt to Establish New EU Anti-Money Laundering Regulatory Agency to Oversee Cryptocurrencies link

The European Union has selected Frankfurt, Germany, as the location for its new Anti-Money Laundering Agency (AMLA), which will directly oversee the cryptocurrency sector. This agency comprises the AMLA itself and national agencies from the 27 EU member states, tasked with ensuring compliance with all agreed-upon anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing obligations within the European Union. Previously, the EU completed revisions to its Funds Transfer Regulation (TFR) last year to enable tracking of cryptocurrency transactions.

7. UK Chancellor Expects Stablecoin Legislation Within Six Months link

As pressure mounts to propose specific measures ahead of the upcoming elections, Bim Afolami, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury in the UK, delivered remarks indicating that the government is “strongly pushing” for legislation. The UK Treasury initially pledged in October last year to provide clearer guidance on specific areas of cryptocurrency by 2024. However, broader proposals to incorporate cryptocurrency exchanges and other industry providers into existing financial services regulations remain pending. When asked if this guidance might also become legislation this year, Afolami stated he couldn’t provide a timeline.

8. Both Ruling and Opposition Parties in South Korea Make Favorable Commitments to the Crypto Market link

Both the ruling party and the opposition in South Korea have made promises favorable to the cryptocurrency market as part of their campaign pledges for the upcoming April elections. These include delaying cryptocurrency taxation, launching spot Bitcoin ETFs, permitting IEO/ICO activities, relaxing institutional investor regulations on cryptocurrency investments, and refining STO legislation. Today, the Democratic Party officially announced its commitment to conducting public opinion surveys related to cryptocurrency, while the ruling People Power Party is expected to make its announcement later this week.

9. Nigeria Imposes Ban on Crypto Exchanges Such as Binance and Coinbase link

Nigeria has imposed a ban on leading cryptocurrency exchanges such as Binance, OctaFX, and Coinbase. The country has instructed its telecommunications companies to block access to the websites of prominent cryptocurrency firms. Previously, in December 2023, the Central Bank of Nigeria had lifted the ban on cryptocurrency transactions.

10. Coinbase’s Weekly Summary

a. Coinbase Seeks to Launch Perpetual Futures Contracts and Other Derivative Products in Canada link

Lucas Matheson, the Director of Coinbase in Canada, stated during an interview that Coinbase is actively seeking to launch perpetual futures contracts and other derivative products in Canada. The company is engaging in open dialogue with political figures and regulatory bodies such as the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) to update the country’s policies to facilitate this objective. Additionally, Coinbase is in the process of applying for “restricted dealer registration,” a novel guideline requiring exchanges to register with the Canadian government. In pursuit of this endeavor, Coinbase recently joined the Canadian Web3 Council, a multi-stakeholder non-profit organization dedicated to advocating for more industry-friendly legislative and regulatory measures in Canada. Long-standing competitors of Coinbase, namely Kraken and Gemini, have also decided to increase their investments in Canada.

b. Coinbase Urges SEC to Approve Grayscale’s Ethereum Spot ETF Listing Applicatio link

Paul Grewal, the Chief Legal Officer of Coinbase, has stated that Coinbase has responded to the U.S. SEC’s request for comments regarding the approval of the Grayscale Ethereum spot ETF listing application. This application aims to convert the Grayscale Ethereum Trust into an Ethereum spot ETF. Grewal emphasized that ETH is not a security. Indeed, both before and after the Ethereum merger, the SEC, CFTC, and the market have not classified ETH as a security; rather, ETH is considered a commodity. Economic principles suggest that ETH, like BTC, exhibits flexibility in meeting the Committee’s ETP approval criteria.

Fundraising

  • a16z has invested $100 million in the cryptocurrency startup EigenLayer. link
  • Binance Labs announced an investment in Renzo, an Ethereum liquidity re-lending protocol based on EigenLayer. link
  • zkSync’s lending protocol ZeroLend completed a $3 million funding round at a valuation of $25 million, with participation from Newman Capital and others. link
  • Ethena Labs raised $14 million in new financing, with Dragonfly and Maelstrom leading the investment. link
  • Decentralized protocol AltLayer announced the completion of a $14.4 million strategic funding round. link
  • Ethereum money streaming protocol Superfluid announced the completion of a $5.1 million strategic financing. link
  • Helius, a developer platform on Solana, announced the completion of a $9.5 million Series A financing. link
  • Web3 social platform Beoble announced the completion of a $7 million seed round, with participation from Hashkey and others. link
  • Chain game studio Crystal Fun completed a $5 million seed round. link
  • The Bitcoin ZK Rollup protocol Citrea completed a $2.7 million seed round, led by Galaxy Ventures. link
  • Inco completed a $4.5 million seed round, with 1kx Ventures leading the investment. link

Learn more, check out crypto-fundraising.info.

Follow us
Twitter: https://twitter.com/WuBlockchain
Telegram: https://t.me/wublockchainenglish

--

--

WuBlockchain

Colin Wu, Chinese journalist, won 2013 China News Award