Last Week’s Cryptocurrency News. Friday, November 18th

Friday, 18th of November. As the week comes to an end, we can focus on the highlights of the crypto industry over the past few days.

Nike unveils its own Web3 platform

Sports brand Nike revealed the launch of the .Swoosh, a Web3 platform.

By using it, the company expects to promote virtual shoes and other products for the metaverses.

.Swoosh is at the beta-testing stage at the moment. The first collection is expected to be released next year. 

As the company says, these items will “soon” be available for community members to wear in digital and immersive games.

As you may remember, in December 2021, Nike took over RTFKT, an NFT studio specializing in the creation of collectibles for the metaverses. This April, the companies announced the first collaborative collection of non-fungible tokens.

As of the late August, Nike had netted $185 million by selling the NFTs.

US Congress concerned about Binance’s role in the FTX collapse

Binance’s impact on the sudden implosion of one of its competitors, FTX, has come under scrutiny from the United States Congress. This was reported to The Block by the Congressman Patrick McHenry.

The North Carolina Republican appears to be the odds-on favorite to be the next chairman of the Financial Services Committee. The new Congress is scheduled to begin its work in January.

However, McHenry indicated that the implications of Changpeng Zhao’s public statements on the FTX issue will be the subject matter of a hearing as early as December.

“This is serious. I think that this is a major event,” the congressman stressed.

FTT token collapse, followed by a liquidity crisis on the FTX, occurred after the November 6 statement of the Binance CEO about the decision of the company to sell its entire token holdings.

Zhao’s company ignored Alameda Research’s offer to buy out the FTTs it owns. Binance likewise refused a possible takeover of the crisis-ridden platform.

On Nov. 11, the parent company of FTX, Alameda Research and about 130 other affiliates filed for bankruptcy.

According to McHenry, current committee chair Maxine Waters shares similar concerns about turmoil in the crypto markets. Subpoenaing all necessary witnesses to the hearing, as well as Sam Bankman-Fried, would be bipartisan, the congressman claimed. 

It should be noted that the SEC and the CFTC have initiated investigations into FTX, as per Bloomberg.

As reported by Reuters, the bankrupt bourse is being inspected by the U.S. Department of Justice. Prosecutors have everything they need to bring a criminal case against Bankman-Friede, according to a lawyer with a background in the crypto-industry.

Bybit discloses the volume of asset wallets

Bybit, a bitcoin exchange, uncovered the amount of major assets in users’ wallets – it totaled roughly $1.9 billion. The service is being implemented in partnership with the Nansen analytics provider.  

“We are also exploring new custody solutions to allow users view their own balance on chain or 3rd party custody. Bybit guarantees 1:1 reserves  for all users and we made sure during this special period all users  withdraws are processed in timely manner,” commented Bybit CEO Ben Zhou.

According to the data, customers prefer to hold assets on the platform in stablecoins such as USDT and UDTC accounting for 38.8% and 16.8% of the total value, respectively. Bitcoin accounts for 19.3% of the total.

Amid the FTX crash, some exchanges began to post the information about their reserves. The openness policy was initiated by Binance, soon followed by Huobi, Bitfinex and several other platforms.

You might remember that earlier Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao and former MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor called for self custody.

U.S. banks to test blockchain platform concept for digital dollar

A group of banking institutions — such as HBSC, Mastercard, and Wells Fargo — announced on Tuesday the launch of a proof-of-concept digital money platform called the Regulated Liability Network (RLN). This is what the press release says.

BNY Mellon, Citi, HSBC, Mastercard, PNC Bank, TD Bank, Truist, US Bank, Wells Fargo, and the New York Fed Innovation Center will all participate in the pilot.

“The 12-week PoC will test a version of the RLN design that operates exclusively in U.S. dollars where commercial banks issue simulated digital money or “tokens” – representing the deposits of their own customers – and settle through simulated central bank reserves on a shared multi-entity distributed ledger,” the statement said.

In addition, the project is based on the existing legal and regulatory framework, encompassing compliance with anti-money laundering measures and deposit payment processing regulations. The concept itself would not rule out expansion into multi-currency transactions and other digital assets like stablecoins.

The results of the pilot are to be published once the pilot is finished.

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