Biden Freezes FinCEN’s Proposal, Swedish Riksbank Embraces DLT, NFTs & Artwork, Altcoins’ Future in Question

In this edition:

  • President Biden Freezes FinCEN’s Regulation of Crypto Wallets
  • Sweden Exploring DLT Solutions for E-Krona 
  • Rick and Morty Artwork Tokenized & Sold on Nifty Gateway
  • Altcoins in the Time of BTC All-Time Highs

Long time no see, my fellow Anchorians! It’s actually the same as always – a week – but we wouldn’t be the first to claim time’s a pretty relative concept. For example – January is as long as October, November, and December combined; I dare you to change my mind.

Nonetheless, before we get too metaphysical (trust me, nobody wants that), let’s focus on this week’s most important occurrences in the world of crypto instead – the new administration seems to be a tad more flexible when it comes to cryptocurrencies, Sweden pursues DLT solutions for its CBDC, more artwork is being owned in tokens, and various altcoins are trying to survive. 

As you can see, in the 76th edition of Weekly Crypto Roundup, there is a little news piece for everyone’s taste – so, without further ado, let’s jump right in!

President Biden Freezes FinCEN’s Regulation of Crypto Wallets

By vichie81, Freepik

Well, that was fast, wasn’t it? President Joe Biden didn’t wait a minute – on his first day in the Oval Office, he froze the Federal regulatory process, including the controversial crypto wallet regulations earlier proposed by former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

The White House published a memorandum addressed to the heads of multiple federal agencies, including the FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network). 

The previous regulation proposal, the self-hosted wallet one, required that ‘’banks and money service businesses submit reports, keep records, and verify the identity of customers who make transactions to and from private cryptocurrency wallets’’. No wonder the American crypto community wasn’t amused. 

The new Treasury Secretary is Janet Yellen, who has recently commented crypto’s being used mainly for ‘illicit activities’, but Compound’s Jake Chervinsky claims:

“First, anyone is better than Secretary Mnuchin, who decided long ago that he hated everything about crypto. Second, although Dr. Yellen may not be a fan now, I expect she’ll be open to learning & listening, & will follow regular order in deciding on new regulations. That’s good.”

What do you think – not great, not terrible? Will this administration be keener on crypto than President Trump’s? Baby steps, that’s for sure, nobody expects radical changes from the very beginning, it would be politically unwise.

I agree with Chervinsky – it’s important that lawmakers (in any country really) stay open-minded and willing to learn about concrete industries and products. In that case, decisions will rest on knowledge and data, and that’s all we can ask for.

Sweden Exploring DLT Solutions for E-Krona 

We have updates regarding the e-krona, Swedish CBDC! As you probably already know, Sweden and its central bank, Sveriges Riksbank, are the pioneers and frontrunners when it comes to CBDCs.

What’s new is that the bank’s deputy governor confirmed the exploration of distributed ledger technology (DLT) as a solution for CBDC’s proof of concept:

“The technology we use is the DLT called Corda. The reason we use Corda is not that we necessarily think that Corda is the best and optimal choice for an eventual future e-krona, but when we did our procurement process, the proposal from Accenture based on Corda we found was the one that fitted our criteria the best,” said Cecilia Skingsley.

Accenture became a blockchain consultant for the Riksbank since the end of 2019, and their partnership resulted in a DLT research that lasted just over a year but it’s not yet completed. 

Skingsley added: “Although we are exploring this issue, the Riksbank has not decided to issue an e-krona. We are still in the phase when we are investigating different options. So the Riksbank is building a proof-of-concept for an e-krona, and we are doing this in order to get a better understanding of how an e-krona could work in reality, and what trade-offs there are in choosing between different properties or functionalities.”

Thoroughness is undoubtedly good, having in mind this project is meant to be a long-term financial solution for Sweden.  And when more updates emerge, you’ll know where to find them!

Rick and Morty Artwork Tokenized & Sold on Nifty Gateway

By ksandrphoto, Freepik

I love Rick and Morty!!! There, it had to be said. Big fan, no joke. They’re more than awesome! Now that we cleared this, we can focus on the actual news.

Justin Roiland, the co-creator of the show, auctioned off Rick and Morty’s artwork on Nifty Gateway, a non-fungible token marketplace, and sold it for $150,000! The tokenized artwork called ‘’The First Ever Edition Of Rick And Morty Cryptoart’’ was sold at the silent auction earlier this week. 

However, there are other pieces of Roiland’s crypto art collection waiting to be bid for and sold, so, you know, if this is your cup of tea… 

Crypto NFTs are the rising trend of the industry, as people get to know tokenization as a concept. Furthermore, NFTs enable creators, artists, sports teams, and many others to offer their goods and creations directly to the fans.  

Nifty Gateway is owned by the cryptocurrency exchange Gemini and represents a unique blockchain-based marketplace: ‘’Nifties live on a blockchain, so no one can ever take them away from you, not even the person who created them.’’

The idea you can digitally own anything is yet to be widely accepted, but it can surely change the idea of ownership itself. While most people outside of the crypto industry consider NFTs and tokenization a Spanish village, the concept is spreading rapidly. Kudos to projects like these! 

Altcoins in the Time of BTC All-Time Highs

In the past two months, we’ve seen a lot of historical moments for Bitcoin! At first, BTC reached the all-time high by surpassing the $20k line, then the price doubled, and then came the inevitable correction. Right now, the BTC price equals $32,587 (CMC). 

As Bitcoin went on a rally, what happened to the other cryptocurrencies? Where are the most popular altcoins? 

ETH – Ether did good, it rallied alongside BTC both in December and now January. While ETH still hasn’t managed to maintain above its previous all-time high (price atm: $1,254), Ethereum houses over 95% of all DeFi smart contracts and that fact still makes ETH ‘the first among equals’ when it comes to altcoins.

XRP – After the bullish November, the SEC lawsuit has damaged Ripple and the XPR price, and resulted in the currency’s unlisting on major crypto exchanges. While XRP managed to bounce back from the abyss, it’s future remains uncertain until the official court ruling. The current price equals $0.28. 

Privacy coins – Regulators didn’t spare privacy coins either. Monero, Dash, and Zcash were also being unlisted from the exchanges due to the FinCEN’s pursuit of privacy coins since ‘’their anonymous nature is leading to illicit activities such as money laundering and ransomware attacks’’. This naturally resulted in a price drop of the mentioned currencies. 

Final Thoughts

Hey there, champ! You’ve read another Weekly Crypto Roundup, so you must be wiser now, eh? This time, we talked about potentially new US policy on crypto, CBDCs, NFT use cases, and the current state of the market. 

The industry continues to diverge from its origins, but not in a bad way: while the core idea remains, everything else evolves. New projects, partnerships, regulation… Slowly but steadily, crypto becomes an everyday part of the global financial system. 

I bet you’re all curious about the near future and while we can’t predict it, we can keep you posted for sure! Until next time, my fellow Anchorians, I wish you fair winds and the following seas.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this post is not legal, accounting, or financial advice. I am not a lawyer, accountant, or financial advisor. I am not registered as an investment adviser with any federal or state regulatory agency. The Information should not be construed as investment or trading advice and is not meant to be a solicitation or recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any cryptocurrencies.