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Ripple CEO Garlinghouse slams SEC, whales spend on NFT art

Ripple CEO Garlinghouse slams SEC, whales spend on NFT art
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Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse calls for regulatory clarity. Scott Moore/Shutterstock
  • Garlinghouse says Ripple case nearing end, but fight must continue.
  • Judge signs off on Binance, Binance.US, SEC agreement.
  • And much more in today’s Snapshot.

Garlinghouse says Ripple case nearing end, but fight must continue

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse warned on Twitter that as Ripple’s legal battle against the US Securities and Exchange Commission over whether its XRP token is a security is coming “to a close,” there is still a larger battle for the industry, a fight for regulatory clarity that “has to continue.”

Garlinghouse published a video on Twitter to discuss the lawsuit’s timeline and express his frustration with the SEC.

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In the video, the Ripple CEO criticized the SEC actions as a clear case of “bad faith, plain and simple.”

Judge signs off on Binance, Binance.US, SEC agreement

A federal judge signed off on a temporary agreement between the SEC, global crypto exchange Binance and its US affiliate to have Binance.US ensure only local employees can access customer assets amid an ongoing SEC lawsuit.

The proposal was agreed to by the judge overseeing the case in the US District Court for the District of Columbia.

It requires Binance.US to guarantee that no officials of global exchange Binance Holdings have access to private keys for its various wallets, hardware wallets or root access to Binance.US’s Amazon Web Services tools.

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The deal follows an SEC motion to freeze all Binance.US assets while it pursues the exchange on securities-related charges. Binance.US last week asked the judge to reject that proposal because the company’s “operations would grind to a halt.”

Whales are spending big on pricey NFT art

Non-fungible token trading volumes may be down, but those with deep pockets are acquiring major art, according to Forkast, including Fidenzas, Ringers, Chromie Squiggles, and rare Archetypes.

In the past week, Fidenza #158 sold for $370,000, while XCOPY’s Five Eyes sold for $238,000 and Chromie Squiggle #10 went for $91,000, among others.

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Still, Sotheby’s auction of NFT art grails from Three Arrows Capital’s holdings capped the week with sales of almost $11 million, seeing Ringers #879, known as The Goose, by Dmitri Cherniak, selling for $6.2 million, making it the second-highest generative art sale of all time.

CEO of Europe’s biggest bank keen on blockchain, cautious on crypto

Noel Quinn, CEO of Europe’s biggest bank, HSBC, which has assets under management of almost $3 trillion, told Fortune in an interview that while he is bullish on blockchain technology in the banking industry, he remains cautious.

We were one of the first banks globally — if not the first bank — to process trade finance on blockchain technology. We have since built tokenisation of the capital markets. We did a real-life, fully fledged bond issue for a bank in Europe just this year written on blockchain. So I’m very much a fan of the technology,” Quinn said.

Crypto seems to be another matter.

“Crypto as an asset class is something I’m more cautious on, because offering that asset class to retail investors in the same way you’d offer a share or a bond is a different risk profile. I’m very, very cautious on crypto. I don’t think that it’s suitable as a product for many of the clients we bank.”

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Could more regulation make a difference?

At the moment, there isn’t a strong enough regulatory environment over crypto, so I’m going to remain cautious on crypto in the near term.”

Central bank digital currencies, however, are more attractive to the HSBC chief. “We’re fully in on central bank digital currency.”

Bitcoin dominance at two-year high

Bitcoin’s share of global crypto market capitalisation, the so-called Bitcoin dominance, is nearing a two-year high amid a regulatory crackdown on altcoins and crypto companies in the US, Cryptonews reported, citing data from CoinMarketCap.

As the weekend began, Bitcoin dominance stood at 47.8%, just short of an all-time high from July of 2021, when it reached 48.2%.

A marked increase in dominance in 2023 comes as cryptocurrency firms have encountered stricter regulatory scrutiny, particularly in the US.

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