The cryptocurrency business is thriving, but there are a lot of things happening, including the Opera Crypto browser integrating Elrond into its ecosystem, US Fed increasing interest rates by 75 basis points, Cardano Vasil Hard Fork upgrades successfully, Crypto needs ‘Global Regulatory Framework: IMF and much more!
In this issue:
- Opera Crypto browser to integrate Elrond into its ecosystem.
- US Fed hikes interest rates by 75 basis points to tame decades-high inflation.
- Nasdaq joins BlackRock in Institutional Crypto push.
- Cardano Vasil Hard Fork upgrades successfully, the first Blockchain established.
- Acala network restarts operations after the August crash.
- Crypto needs ‘Global Regulatory Framework: International Monetary Fund (IMF).
- ETHPoW suffers a replay attack and sheds more than 35%.
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Opera Crypto browser to integrate Elrond into its ecosystem.
The Elrond team announced on Sept 22 that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Opera. The partnership will allow all Opera users direct access to the Elrond ecosystem. This will make $EGLD, Elrond assets, and applications built on the Elrond network accessible for the Opera user base, further increasing adoption avenues.
This is what Susie Batt, Crypto Ecosystem Lead at Opera had to say about this exciting partnership: “The seamless integration of Elrond further expands the wide array of crypto-centric services available to Opera Crypto Browser users. Such interoperability is becoming increasingly important for any project aiming to embrace Web3. We are excited to have another blockchain partner join us on our mission to accelerate the evolution of the internet.”
Elrond is a high-throughput public blockchain focused on providing security, efficiency, scalability, and interoperability by employing two key elements: Adaptive State Sharding and a new Secure Proof of Stake (“SPoS”) consensus mechanism.
Adding Elrond to Opera Crypto Browser is yet another step to making Web3 more inclusive and friendly for people who use the platform. Since the project’s launch in 2018, Opera has also integrated multiple decentralized networks, including Ethereum, Bitcoin, BNB Chain, and Polygon, and announced partnerships with Pancakeswap, 1inch, NEAR, Solana and others.
US Fed hikes interest rates by 75 basis points to tame decades-high inflation.
The Federal Reserve on Sept 21 hiked its benchmark policy rate by 75 basis points for the third time in a row, in an attempt to cool down decades-high inflation which has pushed the cost of living in the US. The hike is on expected lines as many economists had predicted the range, considering the high inflation number in August despite previous moves by the central bank.
After the rate hike, Fed chairman Jerome Powell said that he was strongly committed to bringing inflation back down to 2 percent. “We have both the tool we need and to resolve it will take to restore price stability on behalf of American families and businesses,” he said.
The Federal Reserve raised its target interest rate by three-quarters of a percentage point to a range of 3.00%-3.25% on Wednesday, Sept 21, and signaled more large increases to come in new projections showing its policy rate rising to 4.40% by the end of this year before topping out at 4.60% in 2023 to battle continued strong inflation.
The U.S. central bank’s quarterly economic projections, meanwhile, showed the economy slowing to a crawl in 2022, with year-end growth at 0.2%, rising to 1.2% in 2023, well below the economy’s potential. The unemployment rate is projected to rise to 3.8% this year and 4.4% in 2023. Inflation is seen slowly returning to the Fed’s 2% target in 2025.
Nasdaq joins BlackRock in Institutional Crypto push.
Nasdaq, the second-largest US stock exchange, is launching a crypto custody service as it seeks to offer crypto exposure to its institutional clients.
The ‘Nasdaq Digital Assets’ business will provide institutional investors with trusted and institutional-grade solutions focused on custody, liquidity, and integrity, a statement from the Nasdaq said.
“Demand among institutional investors for engaging in digital assets has increased in recent years and Nasdaq is well-positioned to accelerate broader adoption and drive sustainable growth,” said Tal Cohen, Nasdaq’s executive vice president and head of North American markets.
Alongside the launch of Nasdaq Digital Assets, Nasdaq has expanded its anti/financial crime technology with new capabilities and coverage for cryptocurrencies. According to the Nasdaq, cryptocurrency-based money laundering activity reached $8.6bn in 2021, a 30 percent increase from 2020.
Nasdaq’s decision to open and widen its doors to the crypto market comes amid a strong push by traditional financial institutions to offer clients crypto exposure.
Cardano Vasil Hard Fork upgrades successfully, the first Blockchain established.
Cardano’s ($ADA) long-awaited Vasil hard fork upgrade has officially gone live. The peer-reviewed, proof-of-stake blockchain platform now offers enhanced network capacity, higher throughput, and lower transaction fees thanks to Cardano’s much anticipated Vasil upgrade. Vasil also introduced enhancements to Plutus that allow developers to create more powerful dApps.
Plutus is Cardano’s native smart contract language. Vasil will deliver a second version of Cardano’s scripting language, Plutus version v2. As the foundational layer of Cardano, Plutus efficiently separates the code that drives smart contracts, which remains off-chain and runs on a user’s machine, from the on-chain validation of transactions. The new Plutus v2 features will become available one epoch after Thursday’s hard fork, expected to occur on Sept 27.
On September 27, full Vasil functionality will be accessible, according to the creators. According to Input Output, the Plutus V2 pricing model will be activated along with the complete capabilities, resulting in decreased transaction costs for smart contracts.
Acala network restarts operations after the August crash.
The Acala network on Sept 23 said that it intends to restart operations following an August minting mistake issue involving its aUSD stablecoin.
In August, a misconfiguration problem with a new iBTC/aUSD liquidity pool resulted in the erroneous minting of more than 3 billion aUSD. The misconfiguration of the smart contract caused Acala liquidity providers (LPs) to get the incorrect mints and constantly offer further liquidity to obtain more aUSD, resulting in the stablecoin being depegged.
Even though a substantial number of aUSD was moved to other Polkadot ecosystem chains and CEXs, the Acala team certified that 99% of the erroneous mints stayed inside the Acala Network.
Following a series of critical governance votes, several Acala operations were put on hold while the team explored the problem. Following community discussions, Acala recovered 2.97 billion aUSD mistake mints from 16 identified addresses and burnt the tokens.
In today’s announcement, Acala Network said:
“After the execution of community governance votes and publication of trace reports, all liquidity pools on Acala are re-capitalized and rebalanced.”
After the Acala Foundation borrowed aUSD with its cash to burn and accomplish re-collateralization, all aUSD in circulation are fully collateralized. As a result, the network may resume normal operations.
Crypto needs ‘Global Regulatory Framework: International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has called on financial regulators around the world to come together to develop a “global regulatory framework” for crypto assets.
In a blog post published on Sept 20, Aditya Narain and Marina Moretti, the deputy director, and assistant director, respectively, of the IMF’s Monetary and Capital Markets department wrote that a global framework would “bring order to the markets, help instill consumer confidence, lay out the limits of what is permissible, and provide a safe space for useful innovation to continue.”
Narain and Moretti argue that the absence of a coordinated, global response to the crypto boom has given way to fragmented, national-level regulation that leads to regulatory arbitrage as “crypto actors migrate to the friendliest jurisdictions with the least regulatory rigor – while remaining accessible to anyone with internet access.”
The IMF has stressed that a global response must be done sooner rather than later, to avoid national regulators from being “locked into differing regulatory frameworks.”
ETHPoW suffers a replay attack and sheds more than 35%.
On Sunday, Sept 18, a cybersecurity firm BlockSec alerted about an issue stating that the Ethereum proof-of-work blockchain faced a replay exploit when an attacker managed to extract an extra 200 ETHW tokens after replaying a message from the proof-of-stake chain on ETHPoW.
The exploiter transferred 200 WETH through the Omni bridge of the Gnosis chain, then replayed the same message to get an extra 200 ETHW. To this, the ETHPoW blockchain developer team said that the attack exploited the bridge’s contract vulnerability, not their blockchain itself. The development team added that it has been attempting to reach Omni Bridge since Saturday to warn them of the risk. Omni Bridge did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The token has fallen over 35% following the news of the exploit Sunday morning.
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