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Terra’s crash shakes confidence leaving some other stablecoins on shaky ground

The Verge |

depegged coins - Terra’s crash shakes confidence leaving some other stablecoins on shaky groundIn the wake of the sudden collapse of TerraUSD, several other stablecoins’ values (whose values are supposedly pegged to the dollar) have started facing issues.

Deus Finance’s DEI coin is currently trading at around 66 cents and has been fluctuating since Sunday, reaching a low of around 52 cents early Monday morning.

Unlike other major stablecoins like USD Coin and Tether, which (allegedly) have actual dollars or assets backing them, DEI’s values are controlled by algorithms making trades. It’s not that there’s no collateral — as CoinTelegraph points out, there’s a DEUS token that you can use to get new DEI tokens and that you can receive if you redeemed DEI.

See:  Ottawa to review Crypto, Stablecoins and CBDCs; Budget promises more financial cops

The Terra coin lost its peg to the dollar, eventually leading to massive inflation in the accompanying Luna coin. Eventually, the Terra blockchain was frozen, and many major exchanges delisted it from sale.

The destabilization of DEI and other coins has also opened up a new attack on a decentralized finance protocol called Scream, which lets users borrow cryptocurrencies by posting other ones as collateral. According to The Block, Scream had the price of DEI hardcoded to $1 — so attackers were able to buy DEI coins for less than $1 and post them as a full dollar’s worth of collateral. The result has left many Scream users unable to withdraw their deposits, left holding the bag on the protocol’s bad debts.

Another coin called Fantom USD has also depegged from the dollar and is currently trading around 83 cents. Scream also had Fantom USD’s listed at $1 despite its depegging — though that’s changing — letting people play the same trick in a separate currency.

See:  PayPal is Exploring the Launch of its own Stablecoin

As for Deus, it seems like there is a plan on getting DEI back to its $1 value. In a Medium post on Sunday, a member of Deus’ controlling organization said that Deus will start selling treasury bonds. Yes, like the ones the US Treasury does — in fact, the post says that the idea is “inspired by the best stable coinproject [sic] in human history, the US dollar.”

Continue to the full article --> here

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Terra’s crash shakes confidence leaving some other stablecoins on shaky groundThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Luna Foundation Guard’s Reserves Down to 313 Bitcoins from 80K post-UST Crash | Vitalik and CZ Take to Twitter

CoinDesk | Sam Kessler, Shaurya Malwa | May 16, 2022

moon over water - Luna Foundation Guard's Reserves Down to 313 Bitcoins from 80K post-UST Crash | Vitalik and CZ Take to TwitterThe announcement comes after criticism of the Luna Foundation Guard's "lack of transparency."

The Luna Foundation Guard (LFG), official stewards of Terra’s bitcoin (BTC) reserves, released a statement on Monday documenting how it disbursed millions of dollars' worth of crypto in its failed attempt to maintain the peg of stablecoin terraUSD (UST).

In the statement, LFG notes that it has almost entirely depleted its BTC reserves from around 80,000 bitcoins to 313. The remaining assets, which mostly comprise the crashed UST and LUNA tokens, will apparently be used to compensate investors.

In one of the most calamitous events in crypto memory, the $40 billion Terra ecosystem collapsed last week when the UST stablecoin, which is supposed to be worth $1, dropped to below 20 cents. The LUNA token, which is designed to serve as a sort of shock absorber for UST’s “algorithmic” dollar-pegging mechanism, crashed from $80 to below 2 cents.

See:  Terra is transitioning from a dollar-pegged stablecoin to a bitcoin-backed stablecoin

In a tweet on Monday, LFG said it sold off most of the BTC in its reserves for UST as Terra’s ecosystem was beginning to collapse early last week.

  • May 8:  LFG said it transferred more than 50,000 bitcoins “to trade with a counterparty”, as the UST price was originally starting to slump.  It said the funds were used for “directly executing on-chain swaps and transferring $BTC to a counterparty to enable them to enter trades with the Foundation in large size and on short notice.”
  • On May 12, LFG said another 30,000 BTC from its reserves were sold off by Terraform Labs, the original company behind Terra, “in a last ditch effort to defend the peg.”  That, however, failed to restore UST’s peg to the U.S. dollar as traders continued to sell the token for other stablecoins, leading to an exodus of capital away from UST and thus lower prices.
  • LFG confirmed the remainder of its reserves, which once totaled over $3 billion, have sunk almost completely as a result of the unsuccessful effort to defend UST.  Says these funds will be used “to compensate remaining users of UST, smallest holders first.”

Continue to the full article --> here


Decrypt | Sander Lutz | May 15, 2022

Vitalik and CZ took to Twitter this weekend to critique Terra—and the very premise of the UST token itself.

In the aftermath of last week's historic collapse of Terra’s stablecoin, UST, and native token, LUNA, crypto leaders have emerged to offer their perspectives.  UST isn’t backed by cash or assets like other leading stablecoins. Instead, an algorithm ties UST’s value to LUNA via a burning/minting mechanism designed to keep UST at $1. That mechanism collapsed last week, wiping out UST and LUNA, and with them some $40 billion in value.

Vitalik Buterin, creator of Ethereum:

“We need to emphasize that the two,” Buterin said, referring to algorithmic stablecoins and asset-backed stablecoins, “are very different.  [The entire premise of UST] from inception [was] intentionally misleading and inherently flawed.

See:  Yellen Renews Call for Stablecoin Regulation After Terra’s algorithmic stablecoin tumbles

After days of uncharacteristic silence, Do Kwon reemerged on Friday with a new plan to resuscitate LUNA. The idea includes abandoning UST permanently and resetting LUNA to a 1 billion token circulation, with tokens to be distributed to both former holders wiped out by last week’s events, and to current holders.

ChengPeng Zhao, Binance CEO tweet:

  • “forking” LUNA, or splitting the blockchain to create a second version, “won’t work. [It] does not give the new fork any value.  That’s wishful thinking."
  • Zhao elaborated that the fatal flaw of such a strategy is Kwon’s failure to understand that “minting coins (printing money) does not create value, it just dilutes the existing coinholders.”
  • Zhao went further, openly questioning the transparency of Kwon and Terra’s handling of the crisis spurred by UST and LUNA’s collapse.  “Where is all the BTC that was supposed to be used as reserves?” Zhao wanted to know.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Luna Foundation Guard's Reserves Down to 313 Bitcoins from 80K post-UST Crash | Vitalik and CZ Take to TwitterThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Yellen Renews Call for Stablecoin Regulation After Terra’s algorithmic stablecoin tumbles

TechCrunch | Jacquelyn Melinek | May 10, 2022

Janet Yellen US Treasury secretary - Yellen Renews Call for Stablecoin Regulation After Terra's algorithmic stablecoin tumblesStablecoins have been a hot topic both on and off Capitol Hill. Earlier today, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen pushed for regulation during an annual testimony in front of the Senate Banking Committee, at a time where Terra’s algorithmic stablecoin UST struggles to retain its peg.

US Treasury Secretary, Janet Yellen, said:

New products and technology may present opportunities to promote innovation and increase efficiencies. However, digital assets may present risks to the financial system and increased and coordinated regulatory attention is necessary.

A stablecoin known as TerraUSD experienced a run and declined in value, [which] illustrates that this is a rapidly growing product and there are rapidly growing risks.  It would be highly appropriate for stablecoin regulation to occur by the end of 2022 because there are “many risks associated with cryptocurrencies.”

See:  Terra Networks’ Stablecoin Loses Dollar Peg (again) Dives 45% (Update: to near zero) Adding More Pressure on Bitcoin

Stablecoins by definition are supposed to be stable and hold their value through a 1:1 ratio that is fixed to an external peg like the U.S. dollar or it can be tied to other assets like UST, which is backed by dollars, but also cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and Avalanche.

“The stablecoin sector continued to grow rapidly and remains exposed to liquidity risks,” the U.S. Federal Reserve said in a report on May 9.

The U.S. Treasury plans to release a report on cryptocurrencies and stablecoins “shortly” and plans to create “highly appropriate” legislation for the pegged asset by the end of 2022, Yellen said.

Continue to the full article --> here

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Yellen Renews Call for Stablecoin Regulation After Terra's algorithmic stablecoin tumblesThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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67% of top 1000 US Websites Violate EU’s General Data Protection Law (GDPR)

PYMNTS | Mar 31, 2022

GDPR - 67% of top 1000 US Websites Violate EU's General Data Protection Law (GDPR)

The European Union has passed several laws aimed at providing digital identity protection, among them the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which went into effect in 2018.

Among the biggest violators of these protocols? American websites. According to one study, 67% of the top 1,000 websites in the United States were in violation of the GDPR.

The violations at work here vary, with 43% of websites not offering users the ability to opt out of selling data, 55% failing to notify users of cookies when they visit the site for the first time, and 32% of sites containing ad trackers.

See:  How Verifiable Digital Identity Will Protect Your Post-Pandemic Privacy

The study pointed out that while GDPR exclusively concerns Europe, websites originating in the U.S. still sell goods and services to EU customers.  Fines for violations of the GDPR range from $80,000 to $120,000.

To help smaller app developers make sure they’re complying with the GDPR — and thus avoiding penalties they may not be able to afford — Google has launched a new platform called Checks that leverages artificial intelligence (AI) to scan code bases and evaluate them for privacy and other areas in which they may fall short of GDPR’s standards. In addition, the platform performs scans for compliance in the U.S. and Brazil, ensuring a significant portion of the world’s app developers are avoiding regulatory penalties.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - 67% of top 1000 US Websites Violate EU's General Data Protection Law (GDPR)The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Bitcoin Mining Council Protest ‘Misleading’ Letter Sent to EPA

Blockworks | David Canellis  | May 5, 2022

bitcoin mining rigs - Bitcoin Mining Council Protest ‘Misleading’ Letter Sent to EPA

Letters sent to the EPA have deepened battle lines between crypto critics and proponents over Bitcoin’s environmental impact

Bitcoin industry advocates responded this week to a letter submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency by Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., and signed by a total of 23 Democratic members of Congress.

The extensive rebuttal sent by the Bitcoin Mining Council, a group representing bitcoin miners, is co-signed by nearly 50 industry figures, including Castle Island Ventures’ Nic Carter — who contributed much of the essay — as well as Block’s Jack Dorsey and Galaxy Digital’s Mike Novogratz.

See: Bitcoin mining is worse for the environment since China banned it

“If you have 23 members of Congress signed onto this thing, it could get messy.”

Carter claimed the original Huffman letter held several inaccuracies:

  • For one, he noted Huffman highlighted the EPA’s denial of a Greenidge application to keep open its coal ash ponds — large dirt ditches used to of harmful coal byproducts that are not biodegradable. But Greenidge is now a gas-only operation that mines bitcoin. The firm uses those ponds to continue mitigating waste associated with its past life as a coal plant. So celebrating the EPA’s move against Greenidge’s coal ash ponds isn’t at all relevant to crypto mining, Carter said.
  • Another sticking point was Huffman’s claim that “a single Bitcoin transaction could power the average US household for a month.” This calculation relies on taking average transaction counts and simply dividing it by the estimated energy usage of the network. The Bitcoin Mining Council’s response labeled the per-transaction energy cost analysis as a “deeply flawed way to reason about Bitcoin, since projecting future energy growth is not a function of transaction count, but instead of value of Bitcoin issuance (which is a function of price and supply growth), together with the fees users are willing to pay to transact.”

See:  A Carbon-Negative Blockchain Making Money Beautiful

  • He noted that some vertically-integrated crypto mining operations — those that control the data center and its energy source — are already sanctioned by the EPA and some state regulators. Just 2% of Bitcoin’s hashrate comes from such mining operations, according to the council’s response to the EPA.

“It’s a myth to say that the EPA is not aware of these things. They’re very much aware of them, and in some cases they’re supported,” Carter added. However, he did note that noise pollution caused by bitcoin miners is unnecessary, and that he’d actively discourage industry participants from setting up in residential areas.

Continue to the full article --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Bitcoin Mining Council Protest ‘Misleading’ Letter Sent to EPAThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Terra Networks’ Stablecoin Loses Dollar Peg (again) Dives 45% (Update: to near zero) Adding More Pressure on Bitcoin

Market Insider | Weilun Soon | May 10, 2022

crypto trdaer - Terra Networks' Stablecoin Loses Dollar Peg (again) Dives 45% (Update: to near zero) Adding More Pressure on BitcoinTerra Network's luna token plunged by as much as 61% on Tuesday, after sister stablecoin TerraUSD lost its peg to the dollar for the second time in as many days.

TerraUSD is an algorithmic stablecoin whose value is fixed to $1. Unlike traditional stablecoins that are backed up by fiat currency and hard assets — including government bonds or even gold — UST, as it's known, has its value set by a computer algorithm.  But intense volatility across the broader financial markets on Monday, caused by investors fretting about the outlook for surging interest rates and inflation, hit the crypto market. UST decoupled from the dollar again, leaving the luna token in freefall on Tuesday.

See:  Terra is transitioning from a dollar-pegged stablecoin to a bitcoin-backed stablecoin

Last week, LFG announced it had bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin to add to its reserves. It has said in the past it intends to acquire $10 billion in bitcoin for its reserves.

Terra Labs' co-founder and CEO Do Kwon said:

"Per the LFG's mandate, the LFG will proactively defend the stability of the $UST peg & broader Terra economy, especially under volatility and the uncertainty of macro conditions in legacy markets," the group said.

"For the first time, you're starting to see a pegged currency that is attempting to observe the bitcoin standard."

See:  How Stable is your Stablecoin?

LFG said in a tweet Monday that it would lend bitcoin to trading firms. "Deploying more capital steady lads," Do Kwon tweeted after.

However, algorithmic stablecoins are controversial even within the crypto community. "It's a lot more dangerous than taking a T-bill and tokenizing it," Charles Cascarilla, chief executive of Paxos, told the Wall Street Journal last month. Paxos issues Binance USD, a stablecoin that's backed by monetary assets.

Continue to the full article --> here

 


BNN Bloomberg | Michael P. Regan and Vildana Hajric | May 11, 2022

Luna Bailout Terms Put a Crypto Spin on Death-Spiral Financing

(Bloomberg) -- From borrowing and lending platforms to synthentic equities to simply trying to build a stable proxy for the US dollar, cryptocurrency projects have long attempted to reimagine traditional financial vehicles for the age of the blockchain.

Now, after the values of both the Luna and TerraUSD coins have collapsed in dramatic fashion, something that in broad strokes resembles an old Wall Street tactic is being revived in hopes of saving the project behind them -- death-spiral financing -- as well as another money-raising tool favored by strapped companies, a PIPE, where stock is sold to institutions at below-market prices.

In the latest example of the crypto world imitating traditional finance, backers of the TerraUSD algorithmic stablecoin (known as UST) are trying to raise about $1.5 billion to shore up the token after it crashed from its dollar peg, according to the founder of a firm that was approached about the deal from the Luna Foundation Guard, a consortium set up to help UST maintain a $1 value. Investors would be able to buy the Luna cryptocurrency -- a coin with fluctuating value that’s used on the other side of arbitrage trades meant to keep UST pegged at $1 -- at a 50% discount to the spot price. The LFG didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

To Max Gokhman, chief investment officer for AlphaTrAI:

Selling something that’s crashed so hard at a 50% discount is like a bad joke.  There’s catching falling knives and then there’s standing outside when it’s raining chainsaws.  This feels like the latter. “Risky assets are correlated and the selling pressure drags one asset into a deeper discount,” said Wilfred Daye, chief executive officer of Securitize Capital, a digital asset management firm. “The selling pressure drags the price further down on BTC, and then you have a whole loop, if you will. That’s the death spiral. It’s crazy.”

In order for Terra to issue enough Luna to get UST back up to $1, dilution of as much as 1,000% may be needed, according to Kunal Goel, an analyst at crypto-research firm Messari. The resulting mismatch between demand for Luna and supply of UST from investors fleeing Terra’s borrowing and lending protocol Anchor may prove to be fatal.

Continue to the full article --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Terra Networks' Stablecoin Loses Dollar Peg (again) Dives 45% (Update: to near zero) Adding More Pressure on BitcoinThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Economist Webinar (May 24): Bank or Pay? Digital Competition in the Fintech Ecosystem

Economist | May 9, 2022

Bank or pay virtual round table - Economist Webinar (May 24):  Bank or Pay?  Digital Competition in the Fintech Ecosystem

Covid-19 has been a trigger for digital acceleration in almost every industry. Technology has forced financial institutions—under mounting pressure from new competitors such as fintechs and large tech companies—to make or propose regulatory, operational and customer-centric changes.  Bankers echoed that sentiment in a recent EIU survey, where they were most likely to name payment platforms such as PayPal, Alipay and Apple Pay as the non-traditional industry entrants that represented their biggest competition.

See:  Economist Spotlight: Imagining a world without banks

While tech firms have clearly eroded some of banking’s traditional functions, what’s less clear is how bankers plan to respond. Are they altering offers, entering new lines of business, buying technology, lobbying regulators, partnering with potential competitors, or innovating their own technology? How fierce is the competition for talent between banks and tech giants?

On-line Webinar:  (free registration)

Tuesday, May 24 at 10:00AM EDT

Questions we will address include:

  • What challenges and obstacles do they face in innovating their systems and strategies?

  • Does tech play a bigger role now for bank leadership or are they seeing tech more as a competitor than a partner in the post-covid world?
  • What are the main areas where the banking industry is most concerned by digital competition?
  • How can well-established financial institutions rethink their products and services and collaborate across the industry ecosystem to improve the customer experience?

See:  4 Digital Transformation Lessons that Banks Need to Learn from Covid-19

  • What are the implications for the structure of the banking market?
  • What factors should be considered when banks choose between buying or collaborating with fintechs? And what can financial institutions learn from fintechs and neobanks?

Register for this webinar --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Economist Webinar (May 24):  Bank or Pay?  Digital Competition in the Fintech EcosystemThe National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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