SEC delays BTC ETF decision, Grayscale triumphs SEC, and BitBoy gets the boot: Hodler’s Digest, Aug 27 – Sept 2

Keep track of Grayscale’s victory over the SEC, Ben Armstrong getting the boot and delays for spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Top Stories This Week

Grayscale wins SEC lawsuit for Bitcoin ETF review

Crypto asset manager Grayscale Investments recently scored a big win in its battle against the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

In an ongoing effort to convert its Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) into a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), the U.S. appeals court judge accepted Grayscale’s argument that the SECs rejection of its recent ETF application was unfair.

The SEC had alleged that the GBTC didnt have enough safe practices and fraud protection in place.

Judge Neomi Rao gave the green light to Grayscales request for a second review. 

Previously, Rao said that the SEC did not offer any explanation as to why Grayscale was in the wrong. 

However, the victory doesnt automatically mean Grayscales Bitcoin ETF is a done deal. Theres still more to come

Ben Simpson

BitBoy Crypto brand will no longer include YouTuber Ben Armstrong

The parent company of Hit Network, the folks behind the BitBoy Crypto brand, just gave the boot to their public face, Ben Armstrong.

The company alleged issues of substance abuse and financial damage as reasons behind the decision. 

In a YouTube and social media announcement, Hit Network revealed that despite efforts their efforts to support Armstrong during his struggle with addiction, they have decided to part ways.

This follows Armstrong facing a series of lawsuits in recent times.

He was in a class-action lawsuit where investors accused him and other influencers of promoting FTX without disclosing how much they were getting paid by the exchange. 

Furthermore, during the lawsuit, there were claims that Armstrong threatened the plaintiffs lawyers and even blew off a federal judges orders to show up in court. The case was put on hold in June.

SEC delays decision on 6 spot Bitcoin ETF applications

The SEC has chosen to postpone delivering a decision on six applications for spot Bitcoin ETFs in the United States. The commission has opted to extend its review period by an additional, pushing the decision further into October on the calendar.

Shortly after the news broke, the SEC also put BlackRock, the biggest asset manager in the world, in the same delayed decision boat.

Bitwise withdraws Bitcoin and Ether Market Cap ETF application

In a surprising twist following the U.S. SECs announcement of delays, Bitwise has submitted a request to retract its application for its Bitcoin and Ether Market Cap Weight Strategy ETF.

This application was originally submitted to the SEC on August 3. It seems that Bitwise is taking a step back to reconsider its approach despite the brief positive market sentiment that followed Grayscales recent SEC win.

Robinhood bought back Sam Bankman-Frieds stake from US govt for $606M

Crypto and stock trading platform Robinhood scooped up more than 55 million shares of their own company that were previously owned by Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX.

The purchase, which cost Robinhood roughly $606 million, was finalized this week after filing the paperwork with the U.S. SEC. These shares originally belonged to Bankman-Fried and Gary Wang, who is a co-founder of FTX through a company called Emergent Fidelity Technologies. 

However, back in January, the U.S. Department of Justice seized these shares.

The purchase has been in the works for a while. Robinhoods board of directors gave it the green light in its Q4 2022 report, and an SEC filing from August confirmed that the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York approved the purchase without any legal complications. 

Winners and Losers

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $25,610, Ether (ETH) at $1,618 and XRP (XRP) at $0.49. The total market cap is $1.03 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Toncoin (TON) at 33.90%, Iota (MIOTA) at 13.13% and Maker (MKR) at 12.33%.

The top three altcoin losers of the week are KuCoin Token (KCS) at 15.53%, Hedera (HBAR) at 15.02% and Astar (ASTR) at 12.82%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraphs market analysis.

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Most Memorable Quotes

There are many cases where transparency is a feature, but people do not want most transactions in the economy to be public.

Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase

Now that the courts are starting to rein in the SEC a bit, I think theres some hope that the industry is kind of igniting again in the U.S.

Jeremy McLaughlin, partner at K&L Gates

“In the end, we will win. You cant steal someones company they built on their identity and win.”

Ben Armstrong, former frontman of BitBoy Crypto

I definitely do think we could see in this next cycle $100,000 cost per Bitcoin, and thats based on if BTC were to capture even 2 to 5% of golds $13 trillion place in institutional portfolios.

Sue Ennis, vice president of Hut 8

We see limited downside for crypto markets over the near term.

JPMorgan analysts

I spoke to a guy the other day that has 80 altcoins in his portfolio. There’s no way an individual investor can stay across and know exactly what 80 different coins are doing at any one time.

Ben Simpson, founder of Collective Shift

Prediction of the Week

Bitcoin risks swift $23K dive after BTC price loses 11% in August

Data indicates that Bitcoin is on track for a retest of long-term support levels following a drop in BTC price as August came to a close.

Reversing the gains witnessed the previous week, BTC/USD is now trading below $26,000 as of Sept. 1, according to data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView.

Initially, market participants had reasons to be optimistic as Bitcoin held a key long-term trendline and maintained the $27,000 level.

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Is the cryptocurrency epicenter moving away from East Asia?

However, a decision by the U.S. SEC to delay several Bitcoin ETF applications caused a change in sentiment.

Bitcoin swiftly shed $1,000 in value over just two hourly candles.

Traders have been speculating over the movements. 

On-chain data suggests that $BTC lacks strong support below the $25,400 mark, popular trader Ali told X (formerly Twitter) subscribers.

On-chain monitoring resource Material Indicators delivered a similarly grim picture for BTC/USD on daily (D), weekly (W) and even monthly (M) timeframes.

Using signals from one of its proprietary trading tools, Trend Precognition, Material Indicators advised that $24,750 needed to hold for bulls to have a chance at clinching a rebound.

FUD of the Week

Balancer exploited in nearly $900k after vulnerability warning.

The Ethereum automated market maker and decentralized finance protocol, Balancer, confirmed that it had fallen victim to an exploit, resulting in losses of nearly $900,000. 

This incident occurred shortly after they had disclosed a vulnerability that impacted several pools.

An Ethereum address allegedly belonging to the attacker has been revealed by blockchain security expert Meier Dolev. Following the exploit, the address received two transfers of Dai stablecoin worth $636,812 and $257,527, respectively, bringing its total balance to over $893,978. 

Balancer is aware of an exploit related to the vulnerability below, the protocols team posted on X, adding that while mitigation measures taken in recent days had drastically reduced risks, affected pools could not be paused. To prevent further exploits, users must withdraw from affected LPs, it advised.

Brian Armstrong

Brazilian crypto streamer loses money by accidentally exposing private key

Brazilian cryptocurrency streamer Fraternidade Crypto is one of the latest victims of unsafe self-custody practices, reportedly losing thousands of dollars due to a private key accident. During a livestream on YouTube, the owner of the Fraternidade Crypto channel, Ivan Bianco, unwittingly exposed his private key to a self-custodial cryptocurrency wallet.

In the middle of the livestream related to Bitcoin and blockchain games, Bianco apparently tried to access his passwords for the blockchain games platform Gala Games through a text file on his computer.

Unfortunately for the streamer, his Gala Games passwords were stored in the same text file as the seed phrase for his MetaMask wallet, which had a significant amount of Polygons (MATIC).

Exploits, hacks and scams stole almost $1B in 2023: Report

Cybersecurity firm CertiK reported that over $997 million was lost to flash loan attacks, exit scams, and exploits in 2023.

Malicious actors targeting the crypto space have taken more than $45 million in digital assets from their victims in the month of August alone and a total of $997 million year-to-date.

In the report, CertiK highlighted that exit scams took around $26 million, flash loan attacks took $6.4 million, and exploits took $13.5 million from their victims in August. The cybersecurity firm confirmed that the total losses amounted to over $45 million.

How to protect your crypto in a volatile market: Bitcoin OGs and experts weigh in.

Crypto is a volatile place. Money can be as easily lost as made through the ups and downs of Bitcoin and the wider market. Bitcoin OGs, veterans and experts provide their opinions, tools and views on how to protect your crypto.


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