Hello. A late night interpretative letter from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the U.S.’ federal banking regulator, saying banks can act as stablecoin nodes was the juice needed to push bitcoin out of the doldrums. JPMorgan analysts see a future where 1 BTC could trade hands near $150,000, according to a new report.
In other regulatory news, the comment period for a controversial wallet rule closed, with many heavy hitters coming out against the U.S. Treasury’s proposed rules to increase exchange surveillance. More on that later, first the top stories for the day.
Banking on stablecoins
A new letter from the U.S. federal banking regulator could give stablecoin networks the same status as other global payments networks like SWIFT or FedWire. In a possible last act from Acting Comptroller Brian Brooks, U.S. banks can now operate as stablecoin nodes and are free to send transactions, so long as they comply with securities and other regulations. Bitcoin markets rebounded on the news.
Bitcoin mining machine prices are soaring along with bitcoin’s price. According to data reviewed by CoinDesk, a surge in mining revenue, limited manufacturing capacities and a number of new mining entrants has led to a supply shortage. It doesn’t help that established players like Riot and Marathon (both publicly traded) have been buying up the most up-to-date ASICs miners.
The battle to control Brazil’s growing crypto retail sector is heated, with Argentina’s Ripio acquiring BitcoinTrade, the second-largest crypto exchange in South America’s largest economy. Last month, Mexico City-based crypto exchange Bitso raised a $62 million funding round, a chunk of which was earmarked for a Brazil push, the company said.
- RIPPLE EFFECT: Grayscale drops XRP from Large Cap Crypto Fund following Ripple/SEC suit. (CoinDesk)
- TRADEBLOCK BUY: CoinDesk has acquired institutional analytics and data provider TradeBlock. (WSJ)
- MINING PIVOT: Two former Canaan directors are helping a Chinese mobile gaming company enter the crypto mining sector. (CoinDesk)
- VOYAGING OUT: Cryptocurrency broker Voyager Digital says Q4 revenue is expected to reach around $3.5 million, an increase of 75% from the previous quarter. (CoinDesk)
- TOKEN GENERATOR: Crypto exchange LCX is now licensed in Liechtenstein to help banks create their own digital assets and security tokens. (CoinDesk)
- FIRST MOVER: DeFi keeps astounding. (CoinDesk)
- KNOWN UNKNOWN? One River has completed “one of the largest digital asset trades in history,” according to facilitator Coinbase. The amount is unknown. (Decrypt)
A new investment report from JPMorgan has set a $146,000 price target for bitcoin. The bullish target is the latest analytical note that wagers bitcoin will become a popular alternative to gold. “Bitcoin’s [current] market capitalization of around $575 billion would have to rise by 4.6 times – for a theoretical bitcoin…