TL;DR: Welcome to In Case You Missed It (ICYMI), a daily crypto news update. 11 different class-action lawsuits hit crypto companies. Bank for International Settlements calls for digital payments and CDBC. Cryptocurrency exchange volumes skyrocketed during Q1. Stellar Foundation to donate 2.5 million XLM to nonprofits. Spanish Tax Agency will send 66,000 notices to crypto traders, and STEEM witnesses lock funds from Hive proponents.
11 Class Action Lawsuits Hit Crypto Companies
Several cryptocurrency exchanges and token companies are now facing 11 separate class-action lawsuits filed in New York regarding their interactions with tokens that could be considered securities. Binance, Civic, BProtocol, Status, Block.one, KayDex, Quantstamp, BiBox, TRON Foundation, KuCoin, and BitMEX are among the companies included in the different class-action lawsuits, stating exchanges violated security-related rules by selling unregistered securities, and token issuers didn’t register with the authorities to issue such instruments.
Bank of International Settlements Calls for Digital Currencies
The Bank of International Settlements (BIS) issued a report calling for the adoption of digital payments, central bank digital currencies (CDBC) included, as alternatives to physical cash while facing the coronavirus pandemic. While the report acknowledges contagion due to cash handling is highly unlikely, it is still possible, and declares “in the context of the current crisis, CBDC would in particular have to be designed allowing for access options for the unbanked and (contact-free) technical interfaces suitable for the whole population.”
Cryptocurrencies Exchanges Experienced Big Surge in Activity Last Month
The bitcoin trading volumes of the principal exchanges grew more than 60% during the first quarter of 2020, according to research conducted by The Block. The total bitcoin traded on exchanges grew from 96 billion during Q4 2019 to more $154 billion in Q1 2020, despite the recent drop in prices. However, bitcoin transactions on the network grew a little more than 11% during the first quarter, showing bitcoin has grown more as a speculative asset than as a medium of exchange during the coronavirus pandemic.
Stellar Foundation to Donate 2.5 Million XLM to Nonprofits
The Stellar Foundation, the institution behind the XLM currency, will donate up to 2.5 million XLM to nonprofits this month to help people hurting as a result of the effects the coronavirus outbreak. The Stellar Development Fund will give 100K XLM to 6 charities and will match donations of the community up to 1.9 million XLM for all charities. The Foundation stated it is time to “provide much needed financial aid to the community that is out helping us all get through this – the nonprofit community.”
Spanish Tax Agency Will Send Notices to 66,000 Crypto Traders
The Spanish tax watchdog, Agencia Estatal de Administración Tributaria (AEAT), will send notices to 66,000 cryptocurrency traders in its battle to make cryptocurrency taxing effective in the country. Even amidst the coronavirus pandemic, the AEAT will notify more than 4 times the traders in 2019 using data from 60+ exchanges. Traders have to pay between 19% and 23% of their income taxes under Spanish legislation, but tax authorities have struggled to enforce regulations be they in Spain or other countries.
Steem Witnesses Freeze of $3.2 Million From Hive Founders
Steem witnesses have frozen $3.2 million dollars worth of Steem from the principal proposers of Hive, the blockchain forked out of Steem due to the acquisition of Steemit by Justin Sun. The soft fork making these changes froze 20 accounts, claiming these “previous witnesses threatened the stability of the Steem blockchain while running a hostile Hardfork version on Steem.” Roeland Lanparty, one of the affected, stated that “this retaliation is pretty unfortunate to say the least.”
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