October 14, 2021       /       Unchained Daily       /       Laura Shin

Daily Bits ✍️✍️✍️

  • Binance is stopping OTC trades for Chinese yuan.

  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned that stablecoins could be a “contagion” risk for the global economy.

  • Venture Capital firm a16z published is “Agenda for the Future of the Internet,” outlining how the firm wishes policy to be constructed around Web3.

  • A deal between RECUR and ViacomCBS could lead to Spongebob and South Park NFTs.

  • Visa launched an NFT program to help artists join the digital art space.

  • Polkadot governance set its first parachain auction for November 11th; DOT increased 25%.

  • DeFi protocols currently hold over $200 billion in total value locked.

  • More than 900,000 people signed up for Coinbase’s NFT platform waitlist that was announced on Tuesday.

  • Arcane Research believes that recent activity on the CME indicates that institutional traders are bullish on BTC.

  • Jon Cunliffe, deputy governor of financial stability at the Bank of England, said that speeding up crypto regulation is a “matter of urgency.”

  • Intel’s latest graphics cards will not restrict cryptocurrency mining capabilities.

  • Fidelity’s Director of Global Macro, Jurrien Timmer, saidthat “Bitcoin is a more convex version of gold. It has an ever scarcer supply and gold does not have the network dynamics that bitcoin does, so it makes sense that bitcoin would outperform gold.”

What Do You Meme?

What’s Poppin’?

The latest data from the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) shows that the United States is the country with the biggest share of Bitcoin’s hash rate.

According to the CBECI, the US accounts for 35.4% of Bitcoin’s hash power as of August 2021. The US is followed by Kazakhstan at 18.10% and Russia at 11.23%. Canada, which accounts for 9.55% of Bitcoin’s hash rate, is the only other country with a market share over 5%.

The latest data is almost jarring when compared to the CBECI’s report from August of 2020. Just look at the hash rate leaders from August 2020…

  • China = 66.86%
  • Russia = 8.17%
  • Kazakhstan = 4.57%
  • United States US 4.20%

The drastic change in the location of mining power follows China’s decision to crackdown on Bitcoin mining, as Michael Rauchs, the digital assets lead at the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance, pointed out in an article analyzing the CBECI.

He wrote, “the immediate effect of the government-mandated ban on crypto mining in China was a 38% drop in global network hashrate in June 2021 – which corresponds roughly to China’s share of hashrate before the clampdown, suggesting that Chinese miners ceased operations simultaneously.” Rauch’s went on to add that “mining operations in mainland China have effectively dropped to zero.”

Rauch concluded by claiming that China’s crackdown is good for Bitcoin:

“The effect of the Chinese crackdown is an increased geographic distribution of hashrate across the world, which can be considered a positive development for network security and the decentralised principles of Bitcoin.”

Recommended Reads

  • Paradigm on designing effective NFT launches (must read):

  • Jump Capital on stablecoins:

  • John Street Capital on the latest episode of Unchained (#synergy):

On The Pod…

Visa Is Building Infrastructure for NFTs, Smart Contracts, and L2s. Why? 


Cuy Sheffield, Visa’s head of crypto, discusses Visa’s crypto game plan, stablecoin regulation, NFTs, and more. Show highlights:

  • Cuy’s background and his journey down the crypto rabbit hole
  • how Visa and cryptocurrency can coexist
  • why crypto companies and fintech companies are similar
  • what Visa is trying to solve for consumers regarding cryptocurrencies
  • how cross-chain payment infrastructure would work
  • why Visa requires enhanced diligence for crypto companies
  • what countries can learn from stablecoins when building CBDCs
  • why Visa is creating a universal payment channel for CBDCs and other cryptocurrencies
  • why Visa chose USDC to begin making payments with
  • the two main reasons why stablecoins are used (hint: it’s not for buying cups of coffee)
  • how cryptocurrency is changing financial education and inclusion
  • how crypto’s open-source ethos is helping underserved and emerging markets build financial infrastructure
  • why NFTs are Cuy’s favorite topic
  • how NFTs level the playing field for black artists (and artists in general)
  • why Visa purchased a CryptoPunk and how other businesses could leverage NFTs

Book Update

My book, The Cryptopians: Idealism, Greed, Lies, and the Making of the First Big Cryptocurrency Craze, is now available for pre-order now.

The book, which is all about Ethereum and the 2017 ICO mania, comes out Jan. 18. Pre-order it today!

You can purchase it here: http://bit.ly/cryptopians