Data suggests the strong US dollar makes Bitcoin weaker argument is flawed

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$3.6 Billion Crypto Heist: South African Bank Denies Business Relationship With Fraud Accused Africrypt

$3.6 Billion Crypto Heist: South African Bank Denies Business Relationship With Fraud Accused Africrypt

According to local media, leading South African financial institution FNB is denying allegations of a banking relationship with the recently collapsed crypto investment company, Africrypt. FNB also insists it did not enable the investment company’s transactions which helped Africrypt’s two directors disappear with billions of dollars in investor funds.

Disappearance of Investor Funds

The financial institution’s denial comes nearly two months after Africrypt abruptly stopped operating. At that time, the crypto investment firm’s management claimed Africrypt’s trading system had been breached. This breach compromised client accounts, wallets, and nodes, thus forcing Africrypt to freeze all accounts, the directors claimed.

However, shortly after the so-called breach, Africrypt directors Ameer Cajee and his brother Raees Cajee are alleged to have “transferred the crypto investment’s pooled funds from its South African account(s) through bitcoin on the blockchain in April 2021.” South African media reports estimate that as much as $3.6 billion in investor funds cannot be accounted for.

Meanwhile, in his response to a media inquiry, FNB spokesperson Nadiah Maharaj refused to acknowledge the existence of any relationship between FNB and Africypt. According to a media report, Maharaj, who cites client confidentiality restrictions, stated:

FNB once again confirms that it does not have a banking relationship with Africrypt. Due to client confidentiality, FNB cannot provide any information on specific bank accounts.

Use of Crypto Mixers

An investigation by local media suggests that after successfully siphoning investors’ funds, the Cajee brothers fled to the United Kingdom. These findings are also corroborated by another investigation by Hanekom Attorneys, a law firm that has been retained by victims of the Africrypt fraud. In addition to these findings, the law firm’s investigations further reveal that Africrypt directors had used mixers in an attempt to obfuscate the flow of the funds.

While the case has now been reported to the Hawks (South Africa’s elite police unit), the founder of the law firm, Darren Hanekom, is quoted in the report as suggesting Africrypt’s accounts with FNB have already been “drained” and that “the entirety of investors’ funds” may have been subjected to the mixing service.

What are your thoughts on this latest South African crypto investment fraud event? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

Canada’s Hive Blockchain Technologies approved for Nasdaq listing

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How PayrLink Will Revolutionize Private Transactions and Online Disputes

In an ever more growing digital world, PayrLink is the decentralized solution that enables people to make secure and zero-knowledge proof transactions without the need to trust a single third party, service, or individual. This dApp grants users access to a cost-efficient escrow service with an arbitrates feature.

As a result, anyone can use PayrLink to settle simple or complex disputes. The dApp minimizes the need to trust someone and removes friction from businesses by making the parties feel safe and transact in a private and secure fashion.

PayrLink protects users from online fraud, scams, and other illicit activities that use the internet to target people. For example, if two individuals or entities want to close a deal, hiring a service, or any other business, they can use PayrLink as their arbitrator.

In case of a dispute, issues with the work, or deadline problems, the protocol’s smart contract can be used to select a number of “Jurors” and a court to resolve it. The protocol will give users the option to choose specialized courts related to the area of the dispute.

For example, if two entities need to resolved issues with a software-related job, they will most likely go to the software development court; comprised of people familiar with the sector. Such as engineers, software developers, and others.

Once the case, evidence, and other elements are reviewed by the jurors, they can anonymously vote in favor of a party. In order to vote, jurors must stake PayrLink’s native token PAYR 30-days before this process takes place. Thus, the parties involved in the process know that the jurors will be impartial and proved that they will not benefit from the dispute outcome.

The protocol’s smart contract will verify the result, the votes, and penalized jurors if they breach the terms of the process.

Incentives For PayrLink’s Jurors And Users, A Decentralized System For Disputes

Many times, a freelancer, independent contractor, or company can be susceptible to a bad actor, or simply they could lack an impartial way of resolving a conflict. As demonstrated above, PayrLink is a solution with broad use cases and a decentralized system that incentivizes its participants to obtain the best result.

Jurors will receive compensation in the form of an Arbitration Fee. This is paid by the users that request the intervention of these participants. Thus, the protocol also creates a hedge against bad actors attempting to spam the system. According to PayrLink Whitepaper:

Each juror who is coherent with the final ruling will be paid a fee determined by the subcourt where the dispute is solved. The arbitrable smart contract will determine which party will pay the arbitration fee. The rules can be simple. We require the party creating the dispute or the party appealing to pay the fee.

In addition, Jurors with PAYR staked with the protocol received part of the common transaction fees. In this way, jurors have even more incentives to stick to coherent results, and the users requesting an arbitrage can be confident about the process.

As the Whitepaper claims, PayrLink will charge a 0.8% fee for transactions with the escrow services charging from 1% up to 6%. The Dispute Arbitration Fee will go from 1% up to 2%. The Whitepaper concludes the following:

Cryptocurrencies are helping millions achieve financial inclusion. PayrLink will do the same in access to justice by enabling arbitration in a large number of contracts that are too costly to pursue in court in a  private manner. 

How Bitcoin Could Be Affected By Powell’s Testimony Next Week, Will BTC Crash Again?

Bitcoin has taken another hit. The first cryptocurrency by market cap lost support in the high area around $30,000 and currently struggles to maintain to the mid area. At the time of writing, BTC trades at $36,120 with losses across the board.

BTC BTCUSD
BTC moves sideways in the daily chart. Source: BTCUSD Tradingview

Bitcoin has negatively reacted to the announcements made by Jerome Powell, Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, in the FOMC meeting. A major macro event in the past week, the US dollar spike as investors lower their inflation expectations for the coming months.

In turn, commodities, such as Gold and Silver, were also affected. In the XAU/USD trading pair, the precious metal dropped from the high $1,800 area. Now, it trades at $1,763 with the XAG/USD trading pair showing similar losses.

Bitcoin BTC BTCUSD
Gold dropped after Powell’s speech Source: XAUUSD Tradingview

However, there is some hope for the bulls. As economist Alex Krüger said via his Twitter account, Jerome Powell is known to caused movements in the markets that counterbalance each other:

Look at the bright side. Powell has a tendency to crash markets at the FOMC and pump markets at testimonies before congress. He will be testifying before congress on Tuesday.

Analyst from Jarvis Labs, Ben Lilly, expects the FED to make a move during the coming weeks to inject dollars into the markets. Thus, the dollar could weaken and allow Bitcoin some respite. The analyst said:

The US government likely doesn’t want a strong dollar when unemployment is higher than it wants. That’s because a cheaper dollar helps create more exports and job growth. So some type of policy push can almost be anticipated in the coming week or two if this continues.

Was $65,000 The Top, Is Bitcoin Bottom In?

Two of the most asked questions in every platform, social media, and chat related to cryptocurrencies. May and June’s price action has only made the bear sentiment in the crypto market stronger.

Trader Josh Rager brought back an “unpopular opinion” from 2020. At that time, he stated that the BTC peak for this current cycle might be lower than most expected. Predictions estimated that Bitcoin’s price could go as high as $100,000 or even $1 million, Rager thought that $78,000 and $85,000 were better estimated.

It’s hard to rule out a run like 2013 where price ended up hitting a new peak high 8 months later after a steep pullback. But for ROI from, cycle bottom to top, to reduce each cycle- why would this be any different? People think $65k isn’t high enough but history says otherwise.

On the other hand, former Goldman Sachs fund manager Raoul Pal believes the US dollar could only get stronger in the short term. Due to the slowdown in the global economy, the Covid-19 pandemic, and the lockdown measures, many placed bets for a weaker dollar in 2020, Pal said.

As the opposite seems to be happening, the FX market could be shaken out. In the short term, this could continue to affect Bitcoin and the crypto market. Despite this potential play, Pal is still long crypto.

This chart of the Euro is a potentially very large head and shoulders top. Remember – 100% of all FX Wall Street forecasters predicted a weaker dollar in 2021 and positions reached record short levels in the dollar. IF this breaks, a new macro regime is in play.

Bitcoin BTC BTCUSD
Source: Raoul Pal

There seem to be too many unknowns and uncertainty in BTC’s price and the overall market. The mid-zone are current levels should operate as critical support. If the downtrend continues, many expect a return to the $20,000 area. The bulls must make a push to $40,000, only time will tell if they will receive a boost from Powell and the Federal Reserve.

EarnX Is Changing the Game with NFTs

It’s not often that NFT platforms come into the picture that offers the value of tangible utility that can be put to use quickly. Enter EarnX, a subsidiary of Yearn Classic Finance that is looking at NFTs in an entirely new way. EarnX is taking RFID technology and intertwining blockchain tech to revolutionize NFTs. They have launched the EarnX NFT Gallery, and are working to stock up the gallery with a community-driven approach.

RFID integration will allow for physical products to be integrated with NFTs throughout the gallery. Since EarnX is a community-based token, there is the integration of the community’s ability to vote for products, and engage with auctions.

The EarnX Token

One major benefit of the EarnX token is that it’s deflationary – allowing you to earn more as your tokens sit. The token carries voting rights, influencing and impacting which products and artists join EarnX, and emphasizes scarcity, stability, and utility.

In order to combat price manipulation, the token also has a 10% tax on all transactions. 5% goes towards a liquidity pool, locked for four years. The other 5% goes back as a weighted distribution to token holders and the burn address. Built on BSC, EarnX also carries low gas fees and continuous burning, allowing for price stability and use-case advantages, while still incentivizing long-term holders to continue to hold. The protocol’s liquidity is especially secure, courtesy of a partnership with DxSale.

The team has also published a forward-looking roadmap, with a big focus on NFTs looking towards the months to come. In another announcement this week, the EarnX team shared that NFAXE will be a Q3 project; NFAXE is a physical axe and paired NFT that are sent to the NFT’s winning bidder. Another project, NFCarpet, has been shared by Earn’s team as well.

Fresh Off The News

EarnX is hot off the press with a partnership announcement with Bella Protocol earlier this month as well. The partnership looks to explore three primary buckets: providing premium NFTs backed by physical art within the sphere of DeFi, community collaboration, and exploring innovation around NFT mining, dynamic NFTs, and NFT airdrops. In a statement regarding the partnership, EarnX co-founder Marcus King also noted that there will be a “dedicated Bella Protocol physical NFT collection” in the future.

The EarnX token also was added as a supported token on Bitrue to kick off the month. Bitrue users can now trade the EARNX token with USDT and XRP. EarnX is also a pillar in the Binance Smart Chain’s DeFi and NFT landscape. With continued partnerships and exposure coming to life, EarnX is looking to continue to be aggressive with the growing DeFi and NFT landscape.

Indian Rapper Raftaar to Be Paid in Cryptocurrency for Upcoming Performance in Canada

Indian Rapper Raftaar to Be Paid in Cryptocurrency for Upcoming Performance in Canada

Indian rapper Raftaar is reportedly accepting cryptocurrency for his upcoming performance in Canada. “Nevertheless, I’ve finally taken the baby steps in this direction and all the credit goes to my manager, Ankit Khanna for making this dream a reality for me,” Raftaar said.

  • Raftaar, an Indian rapper, lyricist, dancer, TV personality and music composer, made headlines this weekend for being the “first Indian artist to accept performance fee in cryptocurrency.” Raftaar’s real name is Dilin Nair.
  • The performance for which Raftaar will be paid in cryptocurrency is a one-hour virtual event in Ottawa, Canada, for a private group of about 100 people. It is scheduled for the second week of July.
  • “I’ve always been an ardent admirer of blockchain technology. I’ve always wondered why artistes and managers alike haven’t explored the potential of this disruptive medium,” Raftaar opined. “Nevertheless, I’ve finally taken the baby steps in this direction and all the credit goes to my manager, Ankit Khanna for making this dream a reality for me.”
  • The rapper did not mention which cryptocurrency he will be paid in, however.

  • Khanna, Raftaar’s longtime business partner and manager, commented: “In my opinion, music will be one of the first industries to be completely and thoroughly disrupted through the blockchain. The artist can now go directly to the public in every single way without the need of middlemen.”
  • Meanwhile, the Indian government has yet to announce its policy on cryptocurrency. A bill that seeks to ban cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, was scheduled to be introduced during the budget session of parliament but was not. There are now reports that the government is re-examining the proposals in the bill and is setting up a panel of experts to come up with new recommendations.

Do you think all performers should accept cryptocurrency? Let us know in the comments section below.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

A RUNE with a view: How smart crypto traders caught a 48% price pump

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Goldman Sachs Scores Partnership with Galaxy Digital to Provide Bitcoin Investment Services

Goldman Sachs Scores Partnership with Galaxy Digital to Provide Bitcoin Investment Services

Goldman Sachs, on June 18, set a new path for banking institutions by beginning to exchange Bitcoin futures with Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital network. Galaxy Digital announced the partnership, as Goldman Sachs aims to invest in the crypto world. 

Galaxy Digital as The Liquidity Provider

The move by Goldman Sachs bank will pose a challenge in the banking ecosystem and could have an incredible impact on crypto. Goldman is partnering with Galaxy digital, which will be providing liquidity to ensure Goldman offers convenient services for the average investors. 

Damien Vanderwilt commented on the recent partnership with Goldman, noting that the institutions’ trust in them proves the viability of their services. Damien said; 

“Goldman’s trust in us validates our institutional expertise and the strength of what we’re building here at Galaxy.”

Goldman is not the first institution to trust Galaxy as their liquidity provider and risk manager. The platform has in the past made partners with several banking partners. 

Galaxy Digital will provide Goldman Sachs with the best execution prices and safe access to the futures and assets. Therefore, the partnership between Galaxy digital and Goldman Sachs will vastly benefit Goldman Sachs. On the other hand, Goldman’s move will set fiat banking institutions on an almost similar path. 

A New Beginning for Banking Institutions

According to many sources, Goldman Sachs is the first bank in the US to trade cryptocurrency actively. Many fiat banking institutions view Bitcoin and crypto just as a financial bubble. Even financial experts believe that crypto is still a scam after over a decade of existence. 

However, due to the new Goldman-Galaxy partnerships, banking institutions everywhere will face pressure from consumers to expose them to crypto. Once the pressure to provide bitcoin grows, the banking institutions will be obliged to please their customers. According to Mr. Vanderwilt, hopefully, more banking institutions could join the crypto world soon because of the fear of missing out. 

The partnership between Goldman and Galaxy digital proves to banks that there are ways to go around the strict regulations set for fiat banks against crypto. By linking with Galaxy, banking institutions, including Goldman, can invest in crypto.  

The Future of Bitcoin and Crypto

After this move, it’s clear that financial institutions are increasingly trusting Bitcoin and the crypto world. Thus, the institutional adoption of Bitcoin shows that the future is in Bitcoin and the crypto world. 

Accordingly, as financial institutions increasingly support the currency, global adoption will increase. Therefore, Bitcoin will be available in the deepest places of the market. Hence, volatility issues in Bitcoin will vastly reduce and ultimately end as the currency’s adoption continues.

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Indian ‘Crypto King’ Arrested by Narcotics Control Bureau — Wazirx Says Not Our User

Indian ‘Crypto King’ Arrested by Narcotics Control Bureau — Wazirx Says Not Our User

India’s Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has arrested a Mumbai resident known as “crypto king,” who allegedly used bitcoin to purchase narcotics on the dark web. Indian cryptocurrency exchange Wazirx says the accused is not one of its customers.

‘Crypto King’ Arrested in India

A Mumbai resident, Makarand Pardeep Adivirkar, also known as “crypto king” in the country’s underground drug circuit, has been arrested by India’s Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB). He allegedly used bitcoin to purchase drugs on the dark web that were delivered to India from Europe.

Sameer Wankhede, director of the Mumbai Unit of NCB, explained that “In November 2020, a team of NCB Mumbai had seized 20 LSD blots from Kharodi Village in Malad,” local media reported. The director was further quoted as saying:

The seized psychotropic substance was purchased from Europe by using bitcoin by a drug peddler from Mumbai.

“His modus operandi was to receive cash, and provide bitcoins on marginal profits by using his wallet that was used to purchase drugs from the darknet,” the NCB described.

Following reports that the crypto king may have used Indian cryptocurrency exchange Wazirx to facilitate his drug purchases, the exchange issued a statement clarifying that he is not its user. Wazirx tweeted: “On June 11, 2021, Wazirx had received an email from the NCB enquiring about the said accused and his trading activity on Wazirx. Upon checking our records, we identified that the accused is not a Wazirx user, and we communicated the same to the authorities on June 12, 2021.”

The exchange continued: “That being said, we want to reiterate that Wazirx follows global best practices on KYC and AML compliances and has a robust transaction monitoring system in place. We perform a stringent KYC verification of every user to verify their identity as well as perform a secondary KYC verification through linked bank accounts of users before allowing a customer to transact on Wazirx.” The exchange stressed:

We allow only KYC-verified and whitelisted accounts to withdraw funds from our exchange.

What do you think about this case? Let us know in the comments section below.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.