Abra Settles Charges With SEC & CFTC; Robinhood Raises $320 Million; Bank of England Debates Digital Currency

TL;DR: Welcome to In Case You Missed It (ICYMI), a daily crypto news update. Abra settles charges with US regulators, SEC and CFTC. Robinhood raises $320 million more. Bank of England debates digital currency. Fidelity International doubles its stake in Hut 8. Binance and OKEx dominate the spot market in June, and BTC mining difficulty goes ATH.

Abra Settles Charges With the SEC and CFTC

Abra

Abra, the fintech company that allowed customers to buy fractions of US based stocks, entered a settlement with the SEC and the CFTC for $150,000 each. The agencies alleged Abra sold these “security-based swaps to retail investors without registration,” failing also to transact these swaps on a registered exchange. Abra had been offering these services since February 2019 to non-US customers, but the agencies stated it was headquartered in California, and the contracts offered were reviewed and approved by US-based employees.

Robinhood Raises $320 Million More

Abra

Robinhood, the fee-free crypto & stock exchange app, managed to raise $320 million after the closure of its Series F funding round, according to a report from Fortune. The new funding comes from both old and new investors, TSG Consumer Partners and IVP. With this cash influx, Robinhood raises its valuation to $8.6 billion and positions itself in a very interesting place as the preferred app for newbie trainers. Despite this, the company is now reviewing its processes after the suicide of one of its traders last month.

Bank of England Debates Digital Currency

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The Bank Of England, UK’s central bank, is debating the creation of a digital currency, according to statements from governor Andrew Bailey. Bailey, during a webinar, declared they were “looking at the question of, should we create a Bank of England digital currency.” “We’ll go on looking at it, as it does have huge implications on the nature of payments and society,” he stressed. While central bank currencies (CDBC) are being studied by several banks, China is the only country that has announced launch of DCEP, its official CBDC.

Fidelity International Doubles Its Stake in Hut 8

Fidelity International, the billionaire asset management firm, doubled its stake in Hut 8, a mining company listed in the Toronto Stock Exchange. Fidelity did this by purchasing most of the units offered by Hut 8 during a public offering last month. While the price of Hut 8 shares have taken a dive, going from $3.35 in 2018 to less than $1 currently, the company attributes its bad performance to an agreement that only let it purchase mining equipment from Bitfury. The funds raised will be used to purchase more capable mining equipment.

Binance and OKEx Made 75% of All Trades in June

While traded volume of the cryptocurrency spot market decreased by almost 40%, Binance and OKEx, two of the biggest exchanges, managed to snag almost 75% of the spot volume, according to CryptoCompare’s June 2020 Exchange Review. Binance trading volumes fell almost by 20% month over month, reaching $41.8bn, while OKEx trading volumes grew to $40.6bn, falling almost 30%. Cryptoderivatives also experienced the worst month of the year, dropping 35.7% month on month.

BTC Mining Difficulty Goes ATH With 10% Increase

Despite BTC prices being kind of stagnant for the whole past month, the hasrate securing the BTC blockchain has gone up, and now the mining difficulty has also gone up in consequence. Numbers from CoinWars indicate the BTC difficulty reached 17.3T, the highest difficulty the BTC network has experienced since its inception. This indicates the BTC network has recovered much of the hashrate lost during the last halving, and that more and more miners are joining the network to secure it with more hashpower.

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