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Will Ethereum Merge hopium continue, or is it a bull trap?

Ethereum is outperforming the broader cryptocurrency market as the highly anticipated Merge approaches, but the bigger picture is still largely bearish. Ethereum (ETH) has gained a whopping 48% over the past seven days, outperforming its big brother Bitcoin, which has only managed to achieve 19% in the same period. It's also up 66% from its market cycle bottom of $918 on June 19, reaching its current price of $1549. However, the current Ethereum rally could be a bull trap with the macroeconomic clouds darkening. A bull trap is a signal indicating that a declining trend in a crypto asset has reversed and is heading upwards when it will actually continue downwards. The primary driver of recent momentum for the asset has been linked to announcements regarding its final switch to proof-of-stake, which has been slated for September 19. The Merge will reduce the network’s energy consumption by more than 99%. However, it will not necessarily reduce transaction fees significantly as thi..

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Sustainable Bitcoin mining power mix hits 59.5%: BTC Mining Council

Nearly 60% of the electricity used to power Bitcoin mining machines comes from sustainable sources, according to the latest Q2 2022 report from the Bitcoin Mining Council (BMC). In its Q2 review of the Bitcoin network released on July 19, the BMC found that the global Bitcoin mining industry's use of sustainable energy is up 6% from Q2 2021 and up 2% from Q1 2022, reaching 59.5% in the latest quarter — adding that it is “one of the most sustainable industries globally.” The council observed the increase in miners' sustainable energy mix has also coincided with an increase in mining efficiency. Q2 Bitcoin mining hashrate is up 137% year-on-year, while energy usage is only up 63%, demonstrating an efficiency increase of 46% Further details about the energy efficiency of Bitcoin mining were shared in the BMC’s YouTube briefing of its full report on July 19 with MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor. Compared to eight years ago, Saylor said miners’ energy efficiency has grown 5,814%..

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Japan’s crypto self-regulation ‘experiment’ not working

Japan’s self-regulation “experiment” for the crypto industry is reportedly not working as well as intended, according to local government and industry experts. Since 2018, the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA), a self-regulation entity, has been tasked with creating guidelines for the country’s crypto industry, with arguments at the time that the entity could be better placed to cope with crypto regulation than a government body. However, speaking with the Financial Times (FT) on July 18, an unnamed source “close to both industry and government” said that the current model of crypto regulation is faltering: “When Japan decided to experiment with self-regulation of the cryptocurrency industry, many people around the world said it would not work. Unfortunately, right now it looks as though they may be correct.”The organization was forged in response to the $530 million hack on the Coincheck exchange in 2018. It is recognized by Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA)..

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Bitcoin price holds $23.5K, leading bulls to say ‘it’s different this time’

Similar to Stockholm syndrome where captives develop a psychological bond with their captors, crypto winters have a way of flipping even the most bullish cryptocurrency supporters bearish in a short period of time. Evidence of this reality was on full display on July 19 after the recovery of Bitcoin (BTC) back above $23,000 was met with widespread warnings that the move was merely a fakeout before the market heads for new lows While the possibility of new lows being set in the future can’t be ruled out, here’s a look at analysts' opinions on how this BTC breakout could be different than most investors expect. This time "it's different"The pointed message of “this time is different” was offered by pseudonymous Twitter user Trader XM, who posted the following chart outlining why BTC is poised to head higher. BTC/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TwitterAs highlighted on the chart above, BTC price did not retest of the range low even as four retests of the range high took place, and ..

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Skybridge announces suspension of withdrawals from one of its crypto-exposed funds

Skybridge Capital has suspended withdrawals from its Legion Strategies fund – one of the firm’s funds with crypto exposure. Founder Anthony Scaramucci confirmed the move July 19 in an interview on CNBC, after Bloomberg reported it a day earlier citing anonymous sources. “Our board made the decision to temporarily suspend until we can raise capital inside the fund,” Scaramucci told CNBC. “The fund is unlevered, so there’s definitely no fear of any liquidation whatsoever and about 18% of the fund is in what we would call crypto exposure.” An independent board also took art in the decision, Scaramucci said. Scaramucci mentioned Bitcoin (BTC) and FTX stock as examples of the fund’s crypto exposure. Among other crypto-related companies listed as investments on the Skybridge website, not specifically linked to Legion Strategies, are Kraken, NYDIG, Helium, Lightning and Genesis Digital Assets. Scaramucci said the Legion Strategies fund was down 30% year-to-date, but up 5% in July. Legion S..

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Amazon.eth ENS domain owner disregards 1M USDC buyout offer on Opensea

On Tuesday, the Ethereum Name Service, or ENS, domain Amazon.eth received an offer for 1 million USDC (a stablecoin pegged to the U.S. dollar) from an anonymous wallet address on OpenSea. The offer to buy the ENS domain went unanswered however, and no transaction took place. This is despite the last sale of the domain name being five months ago for 33 Ether (worth around $100,000 at that time). The expired million-dollar offer for Amazon.eth on OpenSea | Source: OpenSea It is unclear at the time of publication whether the owner simply was not informed of the offer, or did not consider it to be near fair value, or if the bidding and domain owner accounts were linked in an attempt to boost the price of the asset (in what is known as a "wash trade"). According to data from Opense, other bid offers for the ENS domain stand at just around $6,200 USDC. The domain name is verified as official by ENS and is owned by anonymous OpenSea user 4761BF. The expired million-dollar offer for Amazon.eth..

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US Justice Department seized $500K in fiat and crypto from hackers connected to DPRK government

The United States Department of Justice has seized and returned roughly $500,000 in fiat and crypto from a hacking group tied to the North Korean government, which included two crypto payments made by U.S. health care providers. In a Tuesday announcement, the Justice Department said in conjunction with the FBI it had investigated a $100,000 ransomware payment in Bitcoin (BTC) from a Kansas hospital to a North Korean hacking group in order to regain access to its systems, as well as a $120,000 BTC payment from a medical provider in Colorado to one of the wallets connected to the aforementioned attack. In May, the FBI filed a seizure warrant for funds from the two ransom attacks and others laundered through China, which the Justice Department reported as worth roughly $500,000 total. “These sophisticated criminals are constantly pushing boundaries to search for ways to extort money from victims by forcing them to pay ramsons in order to regain control of their computer and record systems..

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Source claims 3AC’s Deribit exposure is worth much less than reported

Court documents that describe the insolvency of failed crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, also known as 3AC, may be overestimating the value of the firm’s remaining assets — specifically, its exposure to crypto options exchange Deribit. In a 1,100-page affidavit composed by liquidator Russell Crumpler and filed in a British Virgin Islands court, 3AC was described as “insolvent” and in need of being completely “wound up” because "Its management cannot be trusted to retain any remaining assets for the benefit of creditors." The documents also detailed 3AC’s remaining assets, which included shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), cryptocurrencies Bitcoin (BTC), Avalanche (AVAX) and Near (NEAR), and shares of Deribit. Liquidators want access to these assets in order to facilitate creditors’ claims, which are worth at least $2.8 billion. According to the affidavit, the Deribit shares are believed to be worth $500 million, or half of 3AC’s remaining assets. However, a source with k..

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Bitcoin price moves toward $24K and traders expect further upside, after a support retest

Crypto fans are rejoicing at the sight of green across the market on July 19 as the months of “down only” price action has finally come to an end after the market flashed its first substantial relief rally in at least a month. Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView shows that much of the newfound excitement is the result of Bitcoin (BTC) breaking above resistance at $23,000 to hit a daily high of $23,447, its first meaningful move above the 200-week moving average. BTC/USDT 1-day chart. Source: TradingViewWhile many have been quick predict a climb to the mid-$30,000 range, a few analysts caution that it could be another fakeout pump. Let's take a look at traders' perspectives on Bitcoin's move toward $33,000. Bitcoin needs a weekly candle close above $22,800The move back above the 200-week MA has been a point of focus for cryptocurrency analyst Rekt Capital, who posted the following chart commenting that “For the first time in weeks, BTC is putting in a de..

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3AC allegedly liable for $2.8B in creditor claims

According to Twitter user @DrSoldmanGachs, a self-proclaimed creditor of troubled Singaporean crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC), the now-defunct entity allegedly owes $2.8 billion in claims, as discovered through a recent 3AC creditors meeting. In addition, the claim amount could be understated, as many have either not made their claim or have not disclosed their claim amounts for reasons of confidentiality. As told by DrSoldmanGachs, the meeting voted to elect a creditor committee comprising Digital Currency Group, Voyager Digital, Blockchain Access Matrix Port Technologies and CoinList Lend. These five parties above represent approximately 80% of the current level of claims. 3AC assets are believed to be comprised of bank account balances, direct crypto holdings, underlying equity in projects and nonfungible tokens. At the time of publication, it is unclear how much in the fund's equity remains. Last year, the hedge fund reportedly held $6 billion in assets and $3 bil..

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