Welcome to Around the Blockchain, Huobi Learn’s daily rundown of the crypto markets.
Fort Worth, Texas is now the first US city to mine BTC, which operates on a proof-of-work (PoW) mining model. 3 Bitmain Antminer S9 mining rigs will run 24/7 in the climate-controlled IT wing of Fort Worth City Hall, while miners will be hosted on a private network to minimize the security risk. In contrast, the New York State Assembly has passed a bill approving a 2-year ban on all new PoW crypto mining facilities that use carbon-based fuel to power their operations. The bill will also prevent the renewal of permits issued to existing PoW crypto miners using carbon-sourced energy, should they seek to raise their electricity consumption.
The Brazilian Senate plenary has approved a bill to regulate crypto transactions, which stipulates that crypto firms will be subject to the same laws as other financial institutions when it comes to crimes against Brazil’s financial system. If approved, the bill will prevent the Brazilian SEC from overseeing the crypto market, save for ICOs. Meanwhile, the Central Bank of Cuba (BCC) intends to issue licenses for both Cuban and foreign virtual asset service providers (VASPs). The licenses will be valid for a year and may be extended for a second year, and the bill states that virtual assets do not include “digital representations of fiat currency, securities and other financial assets widely used in traditional banking and financial systems”.
Robinhood (HOOD) is letting go around 9% of its full-time workforce, said CEO and co-founder Vlad Tenev yesterday. He explained in a blog post that in 2020 and H1 2021, the company had experienced “hyper growth” thanks to lockdowns, low interest rates and government fiscal stimulus; this then led to employee numbers rising nearly 6 times, from 700 to almost 3,800. However, this also resulted in duplicate roles, which influenced the decision to downsize. Tenev said this was “the right decision to improve efficiency, increase our velocity and ensure we are responsive to the changing needs of our customers”.
Asymmetric, a new crypto investment firm founded by Joe McCann, is aiming to raise $1 billion in capital. However, though the firm is the latest on a fast-growing list of capital allocators in crypto, McCann has said its “very technological view on crypto” sets it apart, calling it a “technology company with the mandate of a fund”. Among its investors are a16z’s Marc Andreessen and Chris Dixon, Solana’s Anatoly Yakovenko and Raj Gokal, CMS’s Dan Matuszewski, FTX, Circle, and former Coinbase president Asiff Hirji. Asymmetric’s team includes former Brevan Howard portfolio manager Chris Cecere, Goldman Sachs alumna Bouchra Darwazah and Drizly founder Brett Beller.
Anthony Mazzarese and Brandon Mulvihill, former heads of foreign exchange prime brokerage at Jefferies, have partnered with FastMatch co-founder Vlad Rysin to start an institutional crypto exchange, Crossover Markets Group. The 3 co-founders had noted the large barriers to entry for traditional institutional clients, and designed the business to cater to TradFi institutions and crypto-native firms seeking low-latency infrastructure, a customizable liquidity experience, and 24/7 support. The exchange’s official launch is expected to be in H2 and it is now finalizing its seed round funding, with plans for a Series A round later this year.
Show me the money
After across-the-board rises yesterday following the announcement of Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter, the crypto market is back on a decline. Over the past 24 hours, BTC saw a 3.85% decrease to $39,125.97, while ETH fell 3.79% to $2,895.43. Other major altcoins also fell within the same period: ADA was down 4.81%, SOL 1.72% and LUNA 6.42%. At the same time, meme token SHIB saw a 3.35% decrease in the last 24 hours, while DOGE fell significantly in the same period by 12.99%.