France's third-largest bank, Societe Generale, is launching its Euro-pegged stablecoin, EUR CoinVertible (EURCV), on the crypto exchange Bitstamp. Developed by the bank's crypto division SG Forge, EURCV, issued on the Ethereum blockchain, marks the first time a regulated European bank has introduced a Euro-pegged stablecoin on a crypto exchange. This move, according to SG Forge CEO Jean-Marc Stenger, aims to diversify positions in the crypto ecosystem and facilitate the broader adoption of their stablecoin.
Initially announced in April, EURCV is designed to offer institutional investors a new way to manage cash flow and bridge traditional and digital asset markets. Its listing on an exchange extends access to retail traders, contributing to the stablecoin market alongside major players such as Tether and Circle’s USDC. This follows SocGen's recent issuance of a green bond on the Ethereum blockchain and aligns with the bank's growing interest in digital assets, as demonstrated by SG Forge's licensure as a digital asset service provider in France.
Lugano, Switzerland, has expanded its payment options for taxes and community fees to include Bitcoin (BTC) and Tether's USDT stablecoin. Facilitated by Bitcoin Suisse, a Swiss crypto gateway provider, this update allows citizens and institutions to pay all city-issued invoices using these cryptocurrencies, extending beyond the previous limitation to the city’s online portal. This development is part of Lugano’s Plan B initiative, aiming to integrate blockchain technology into the city's financial system and daily life in collaboration with Tether. Bitcoin Suisse's use of QR-Bill technology simplifies the payment process, enabling residents to scan invoice QR codes and select their preferred cryptocurrency for payment. Lugano's move reflects a growing trend in Swiss municipalities adopting cryptocurrency as a payment method, complementing traditional options, and follows similar pro-crypto approaches in other Swiss regions such as Zug and Zermatt.
Crypto mining firm Hut 8 is venturing into the artificial intelligence (AI) infrastructure and computing markets following its merger with US Bitcoin Corp. Chief Strategy Officer Mike Ho stated that Hut 8 is well-positioned to meet the rising demand for high-density data center infrastructure, with plans to capitalize on the growth potential of AI. This strategic shift follows the company's acquisition of five data centers in early 2022 and its engagement in various computing services, including gaming rendering and NFT storage.
The firm, which already provides high-performance computing services, aims to expand its revenue streams, aligning with industry trends where crypto miners such as Hive Digital Technologies and Bit Digital are diversifying into AI-focused ventures. With an installed self-mining capacity of 7.5 EH/s across multiple sites, Hut 8 is looking to optimize operational synergies and explore growth opportunities in the face of the upcoming Bitcoin halving and intensifying competition among large miners.
Bitcoin experienced a slight loss of steam when it encountered significant resistance as it neared the $45,000 threshold. Following a brief surge to $44,500, prices retraced by nearly 4%, bottoming out at a session low of $42,850.
Conversations between the SEC and asset management firms seeking to list Bitcoin ETFs, such as Grayscale and BlackRock, have progressed into critical technical discussions. Regulatory authorities have consistently harbored concerns regarding market manipulation, prompting these ETF issuers to diligently finalize various aspects, including custody arrangements, creation and redemption mechanisms, and investor risk disclosures. The imminent ETF launch is anticipated to attract an influx of approximately $3 billion within its initial days.
JPMorgan Chase's CEO, Jamie Dimon, expressed vehement opposition to cryptocurrencies during a hearing on Capitol Hill, advocating for their outright ban. He emphasized, "If I were in charge, I would shut it down." Despite Dimon's longstanding skepticism toward cryptocurrencies dating back to 2017, it's worth noting that his bank maintains a substantial involvement in blockchain technology.
Equity futures exhibited positive momentum on Thursday, with the looming release of Friday's highly anticipated job report. Wednesday marked the first instance of a three-day negative streak for the S&P 500 since October.
Throughout the week, investor attention has been fixated on the job market amidst a series of mixed data releases. This morning's release of weekly jobless claims fell short of expectations, suggesting that the pace of layoffs has not intensified. This leaves the market in a state of uncertainty as it awaits the centerpiece event: Friday's official jobs report. Investors are keeping a close eye on the possibility of labor market softening, as this could influence the Federal Reserve's inclination to refrain from further interest rate hikes.
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