Top Stories This Week
Ethereum’s Shapella hard fork executed on mainnet
The Ethereum blockchain’s mainnet, also referred to as the Beacon Chain, implemented the Shapella hard fork on April 12. The upgrade made fund withdrawals possible for those who have staked the network’s Ether (ETH) asset. Within the first hour of the hard fork, a total of 12,859 Ether were unlocked in 4,333 withdrawals, according to Ethereum block explorer beaconchai.in. Nearly a day after the upgrade, ETH surpassed the $2,000 price point.
FTX has recovered $7.3B in assets, will consider rebooting exchange
A comeback for FTX is on the table, according to the legal team of the bankrupted crypto exchange. In an April 12 hearing, FTX’s lawyers said the company had already recovered about $7.3 billion in liquid assets and was considering restarting its crypto exchange operations in the second quarter of 2024, suggesting a reboot as early as April. After the news broke, FTX token (FTT) surged over 112%. Meanwhile in Europe, a Swiss court approved the sale of the firm’s European operations.
OpenAI finds fresh support from Japan amid global country-wide bans
Japan is interested in potentially using technology from artificial intelligence (AI) outfit OpenAI — the creator of chatbot ChatGPT — depending on the resolution of issues relating to cybersecurity and privacy. The interest was expressed by Japan’s chief cabinet secretary, Hirokazu Matsuno. Sam Altman, OpenAI’s CEO, aims to work with Japan to build technology for the country. OpenAI has faced opposition from multiple countries, however. The artificial intelligence race has also accelerated this week with Amazon, Alibaba and Twitter working on their own AI initiatives.
Twitter to launch crypto and stock trading in partnership with eToro
Twitter is reportedly planning to introduce a new feature that lets users trade cryptocurrencies and stocks. The feature will allow users to browse market charts for a wider variety of financial instruments, as well as purchase or sell crypto and other assets through Twitter’s partner fintech firm, eToro. Musk had earlier floated the idea of making Twitter a “super app,” offering users access to several online services in one place.
Mastercard launches NFT-gated musician accelerator program
Mastercard is one of several traditional finance companies that have ventured into the Web3 arena in recent years. Most recently, on April 12, the company announced its new artist accelerator program with a Web3 twist: The program is NFT-gated and, therefore, only accessible to holders of its Mastercard Music Pass NFT. The NFT is limited-edition and free until the end of the month for both musicians and fans, while the program was created in partnership with Polygon.
Winners and Losers
At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $30,439, Ether (ETH) at $2,105 and XRP at $0.52. The total market cap is at $1.28 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.
Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Injective (INJ) at 54.92%, WOO Network (WOO) at 46.91% and Arbitrum (ARB) at 42.04%.
The top three altcoin losers of the week are Enjin Coin (ENJ) at -6.49%, Basic Attention Token (BAT) at -2.89% and BitTorrent New (BTT) at -1.19%.
For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.
Most Memorable Quotations
“If we want a strong U.S. dollar globally, a U.S. dollar stablecoin is a way to see that happen.”
Denelle Dixon, CEO of the Stellar Development Foundation
“Bitcoin is a gambling token, and it doesn’t have any intrinsic value.”
Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway
“There is a very natural tendency to borrow traditional financial industry regulations to apply to crypto. Crypto is different from banks and traditional financial industries.”
Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance
“[NFT warranties] will provide a sense of security and trust, which will encourage more non-native crypto users to join the Web3 space with minimal risk.”
George Basiladze, CEO of Wert
“The road of innovation and technological change has never been smooth sailing.”
Paul Chan, financial secretary of Hong Kong
“There is no difference in privacy or surveillance whether you are using your Visa card or a CBDC.”
Aaron Klein, former chief economist of the U.S. Senate Banking Committee
Prediction of the Week
Bitcoin price spikes above $31K as Ethereum gains spark ‘altseason’ calls
Bitcoin enjoyed some positive action this week, poking through the $31,000 price level, according to Cointelegraph’s BTC price index. Michaël van de Poppe, CEO and founder of trading firm Eight, pointed to a few price points of potential interest.
“Bitcoin looks strong, but will have some shallow corrections in an upward trend,” he noted via an April 14 tweet. “I’ve marked $31.7-32K as important resistance point.”
“However, $25K was the level everyone wanted to buy. This will probably shift to $28.5K, and then nobody buys. I’d prefer to focus on $29.7K,” van de Poppe added.
The Ethereum blockchain’s native asset, ETH, also enjoyed some positive price action during the week. Excitement at the potential prospect of some form of altseason was expressed in the crypto community this week.
FUD of the Week
Hacker mints 1 quadrillion yUSDT after exploiting old Yearn.finance contract
A hacker exploited an old contract from Yearn Finance, creating a massive amount of the stablecoin yUSDT tokens, according to blockchain security firm PeckShield. The hacker swapped the yUSDT to other stablecoins, allowing them to take hold of $11.6 million worth of stablecoins. At least 1,000 Ether ($2 million) has been transferred to the crypto mixer Tornado Cash.
Crypto exchange Bitrue suffers $23M hack due to hot wallet exploit
Almost $23 million was pilfered from centralized crypto exchange Bitrue due to an exploit. The outfit saw its hot wallet hacked but was able to limit the damage after swiftly jumping into action. The apprehended sum totals less than 5% of funds on the exchange, and the outfit has suspended withdrawals while performing an investigation, with withdrawals planned for resumption on April 18. The hack did not affect the platform’s other wallets, according to Bitrue. “All identified users who are affected by this incident will be compensated in full,” the exchange also noted.
US court issues summons to Tron’s Justin Sun, threatens default judgment if no response
A United States court has issued a summons to Tron founder Justin Sun’s Singapore address in connection to a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) civil case. In March, the SEC filed a civil lawsuit against Sun, the Tron Foundation, the BitTorrent Foundation and Rainberry over the “orchestration of the unregistered offer and sale, manipulative trading, and unlawful touting” of Tron TRX as a crypto asset security. Sun will face “judgment by default” if he does not get in touch with SEC attorney Adam Gottlieb within a certain time window.
Best Cointelegraph Features
ZK-rollups are ‘the endgame’ for scaling blockchains: Polygon Miden founder
He got his start in ZK-rollups after Vitalik Buterin saw his work on Eth Research — now he’s heading up Polygon’s game-changing ZK project Miden.
Why join a blockchain gaming guild? Fun, profit and create better games
You can help create better blockchain games by joining a gaming guild… and have some fun, too.
Pro-XRP lawyer John Deaton ‘10x more into BTC, 4x more into ETH’: Hall of Flame
Former aspiring rapper and pro-XRP lawyer John Deaton predicts XRP will top its all-time high if Ripple wins the SEC lawsuit.
Is China softening on Bitcoin? A turn of phrase stirs the crypto world
DeFi can be halal but not DOGE? Decentralizing Islamic finance
Make 500% from ChatGPT stock tips? Bard leans left, $100M AI memecoin: AI Eye
$3.4B of Bitcoin in a popcorn tin: The Silk Road hacker’s story
Best and worst countries for crypto taxes — plus crypto tax tips
Pro-XRP lawyer John Deaton ‘10x more into BTC, 4x more into ETH’: Hall of Flame
Here’s how Ethereum’s ZK-rollups can become interoperable