May 28, 2021

4 min read

WageCan Weekly Headlines 2021 W21–1

Date: 05/28/2021

“In my understanding, it was really a vote of confidence to really get into the conversation as I’m such a big believer in crypto, and where things are heading in the world.” — Tom Brady, the seven-time Super Bowl champion

Weekly News Report:

1. Tether (USDT), the world’s largest stablecoin by market capitalization, continues to grow despite record-breaking cryptocurrency outflows triggered by Elon Musk’s Bitcoin criticism. On Monday, Tether’s market cap hit $60 billion for the first time in history, marking another milestone of the stablecoin’s growth. USDT repeatedly broke new market cap milestones over the past two months, adding $10 billion each month.

2. The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) has begun exploratory studies on central bank digital currencies. According to the SARB, the preliminary study will focus on issues surrounding a potential CBDC issuance for retail use in South Africa. South Africa’s CBDC study is expected to last until 2022.

3. After banning crypto payments back in 2017, Indonesia is looking to allow payments in a digital rupiah currency. Governor Perry Warjiyo said Tuesday that Indonesia’s central bank is planning to launch a digital rupiah currency as a legal payment instrument in Indonesia.

4. Ether sails past BTC’s daily volume as Grayscale ETH Trust trades at 11% premium. Ethereum is seeing renewed interest in the aftermath of Bitcoin’s travails this week, with Ether’s 24-hour trade volume topping BTC’s by a significant margin.

5. Nebraska signs a law to authorize state-chartered banks to custody crypto. While crypto custody was already permitted for federally chartered banks in the United States last July, the Nebraska Act will extend these rights to institutions chartered at a state level. The state of Wyoming is the only U.S. state to have preempted Nebraska in this regard, chartering its first crypto bank back in September 2020.

6. Global software giant Apple is recruiting for a new business development manager specializing in alternative payments, signaling that the iPhone maker is gravitating toward digital assets. Apple is seeking a business professional with more than 10 years of experience, including a five-year track record “with alternative payment providers, such as digital wallets, BNPL, Fast Payments, cryptocurrency” and others.

7. PayPal users will be able to withdraw crypto to external wallets. The news comes just seven months after PayPal first enabled crypto purchases on its platform. At the time, the decision was heralded as a major milestone in mainstream recognition of digital assets.

8. Carl Icahn, the former crypto skeptic and the advisor to the Trump administration who has a net worth of $15.6 billion, told Bloomberg he’s set to enter the crypto market in a “big way” — teasing an investment of around $1.5 billion.

9. The Austrian Post made history back in 2019 by becoming the first government-backed institution to launch an NFT. Oesterreichische Post AG — Austria’s postal service — is set to adopt even more digital technology protocols for its nonfungible token (NFT) postage stamps. The Austrian Post revealed plans for incorporating near-field communication (NFC) chips in Crypto Stamp 3.0

10. BlackRock, the financial services giant, is studying crypto, which could someday play a role akin to gold. BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said on Wednesday cryptocurrencies could someday play a role in long-term investing as an asset class similar to gold.

11. WisdomTree, the ETF specialist firm, already has a bitcoin ETF before the U.S. regulator and becomes the second U.S. fund shop to also vie for an ether product, after VanEck. Approval would see Ethereum investments become readily available to U.S. retail traders, who could buy into the ETF without taking ownership of that blockchain’s native token, ether.

12. “Elon Musk and the ESG (environmental, social and governance) movement are responsible for the recent drop in cryptocurrency prices,” Ark’s Cathie Wood told CoinDesk’s Consensus 2021 conference.

13. Tom Brady has “definitely” gotten involved in investing in the cryptocurrency market, the seven-time Super Bowl champion said Thursday. “I’m a big believer in crypto,” he said.

14. Dubai’s first cryptocurrency, DubaiCoin, has risen over 1000% since its debut in one day. It was trading at around $1.13 at around 4 pm IST on May 27, up from an original price of $0.17.

15. Recent filings naming Anthony Scaramucci’s SkyBridge Capital and Fidelity Investments’ Wise Origin Bitcoin Trust officially commence the SEC’s review of the two bitcoin ETF bids. The pair of bitcoin ETF applications join four others under official review with roughly 10 more still pending.

16. Sheetz, a major Mid-Atlantic restaurant and convenience chain, today announced it will be enabling digital currency payments via Flexa, the leading pure-digital payments network, to provide customers with the ability to pay for items inside the store or fill up their cars, trucks, and RVs at the pump using digital currencies like Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, Dogecoin, and more.

17. Tiger securities plans to arrange overseas virtual currency license, CEO said it will timely provide digital currency-related transactions.