In today’s Snapshot, the CFTC concludes that Celsius ex-CEO Alex Mashinsky violated rules prior to the company’s collapse. The Bank of England explores privacy features for its CBDC, known as Britcoin. Israel considers exempting foreigners from capital gains tax on crypto sales. And Valkyrie refiles for a Bitcoin ETF with Coinbase’s support as BlackRock’s CEO says he sees Bitcoin’s potential.
Let’s dig in.
CFTC comes after Celsius ex-CEO
The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission has determined that crypto lender Celsius Network and its former CEO, Alex Mashinsky, violated US regulations prior to the company’s collapse, anonymous sources told Bloomberg. The agency may file a case in federal court this month. Attorneys in the CFTC’s enforcement unit found that Celsius misled investors and should have registered with the regulator. Celsius is also under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission and federal prosecutors in New York.
BoE works to make ‘Britcoin’ more private
The Bank of England is partnering with payment platform Nuggets to develop a privacy layer for the UK’s proposed retail central bank digital currency, reports The Block. This layer would reportedly allow for untraceable connections, enabling private swapping and verification of credentials without disclosing identities — all thanks to zero-knowledge proofs.
Earlier this week, DL News reported that the Bank of International Settlements and three central banks are studying the benefit of pairing blockchain technology with CBDCs.
Israel wants crypto tax exemptions for foreigners
Israel’s parliament has passed a preliminary reading of a bill that aims to extend tax benefits to the country’s crypto sector, according to CoinDesk. If approved, the bill would exempt foreign residents from capital gains taxes on the sale of digital currencies and reduce tax on crypto options for employees.
The bill has the support of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition government and is part of the country’s efforts to attract investors and companies.
Valkyrie refiles for Bitcoin ETF
Valkyrie has refiled an application for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund after the SEC deemed the initial filing inadequate, reports Bloomberg.
The firm stated that Coinbase would provide market surveillance for the proposed ETF, and Nasdaq had executed a term sheet with Coinbase for a surveillance-sharing agreement. Surveillance is seen as crucial for gaining SEC approval for a spot Bitcoin ETF to address fraud and market manipulation concerns.
The filing comes amid a wave of firms seeking approval for similar ETFs following BlackRock’s filing, which has sparked a rally in cryptocurrencies.
BlackRock’s Fink: Bitcoin can ‘revolutionise’ finance
In an interview with Fox Business, reported by DL News, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said that cryptocurrencies — specifically Bitcoin — have the potential to revolutionise the financial system. “If we can create more tokenisation of assets and securities – that’s what Bitcoin is – it could revolutionise finance,” he said.
Fink said Bitcoin, unlike traditional investments such as gold, is not tied to any specific currency and can serve as an alternative asset. His statements come days after BlackRock’s iShares unit filed for a spot Bitcoin ETF with the SEC.
What we’re reading around the web
The thing about crypto ownership - Financial Times