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Crypto Flipsider News – BTC Rally Cools, Oil Prices Spike, Global Recession Threat, Ukraine Starts First-of-a-Kind Airdrop, BTC Sanctions on Horizon + US Taskforce Against Oligarchs and Their Crypto, SEC to Look at NFT Market and Illegal Token Offerings

Read in the digest

  • Bitcoin Slows Down While Oil Prices Spike, Triggering Fears of a Recession.
  • Ukraine Launches Airdrop for Contributors to Its Crypto Charity Fund, But Makes U-Turn.
  • DOJ Creates Taskforce to Enforce Sanctions Against Russia in the Cryptoverse.
  • The SEC Takes a Closer Look at NFTs on Grounds That They Might Be Securities.

BTC Rally Cools, Oil Prices Spike, Global Recession Threat

After gaining over 16% in the last 7 days, Bitcoin slowed down and is currently trading at around $43,000. The threat of sanctions from regulators to rein in Russia’s adoption of cryptocurrencies might have played a role in the small blip.

On the other side of the market, oil prices are surging and the new figures are matching the prices of 2014 at around $110 per barrel. The downside from this is that it could lead to pressure on the standard of living in Western countries that are buyers of Russian crude.

Experts think that the combination of these factors puts the world under threat of a global recession. Inflation figures could climb as high as 8% in 2022 if the price of oil reaches $150 per barrel, putting a bigger strain on consumers.

The 1D price chart of Bitcoin (BTC). Source: CoinMarketCap

Flipsider:

  • The world is less dependent on oil because of the strides in clean energy, so the threat of a global recession may not be as harsh as anticipated.

Why You Should Care

Cryptocurrencies are considered a hedge in the face of rising levels of inflation. As people lose faith in fiat, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are the new frontiers for individuals looking to preserve their wealth.

Ukraine Announced First-of-a-Kind Airdrop but Reversed Decision

The Ukrainian government became the first country in the world to launch an airdrop to boost its charity donations. The country announced that the airdrop is open to individuals that contributed funds toward the defense of the country.

The move was announced via the country’s Twitter account with a snapshot billed for March 3rd, 4 pm UTC/GMT, with the airdrop scheduled to take place shortly after. However, the country has reversed the decision “after careful consideration” and will announce NFTs to support the armed forces instead.

Charity donations have soared beyond $30 million with individuals and entities contributing to the relief fund. Binance donated $10 million while Polkadot’s founder donated $5 million.

Flipsider:

  • Justin Sun, TRON’s founder, noted that excluding TRON from the airdrop was unjust. His comments have been described as being insensitive by several commentators.

Why You Should Care

The success of the Ukrainian experiment with cryptocurrencies will set off a chain reaction with other countries looking to take a page from their book.

BTC Sanctions on Horizon + US Taskforce Against Oligarchs and Their Crypto

The US Department of Justice has announced the formation of a new taskforce with the core objectives of stifling Russia’s use of cryptocurrencies in the war effort.  Since the start of the conflict, on-chain data indicates that transactions between exchanges and the Russian Ruble are at a high, fueling speculations of Russian dependence on them.

The Department claims that it will use its powers to seize the assets of individuals that violate the sanctions. The threats of these BTC sanctions have led to the asset slowing down its resurgence after last week’s tumble.

US lawmakers have raised concerns that Russia might switch to cryptocurrencies by sending a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. The concerned lawmakers are asking for information on the steps that the Treasury is taking to handle the threat.

Flipsider:

  • Despite the calls of authorities to block Russian cryptocurrency accounts, top exchanges have refused on grounds that such a move is against the blockchain technology ethos of financial inclusivity.

Why You Should Care

Centralized exchanges are oftentimes within the purview of regulators. As cryptocurrencies become increasingly regulated, decentralized exchanges may see an influx in the number of users.

SEC to Look at NFT Market and Illegal Token Offerings

The Securities and Exchange Commission is shining a light on the activities of NFTs on grounds that they are used to raise money like securities. The SEC is particularly interested in fractional NFTs that entail splitting up assets into units that can be traded easily.

In deciding what makes a security, the SEC will be turning to the Howey test as laid out in the 1946 Supreme Court decision. According to the test, an asset is seen as a security if investors pool money in a company with the intent of reaping rewards from the venture.

The SEC has intensified efforts to rein in the cryptocurrency industry and recently slammed a $100 million fine on BlockFi over a lending product. It has also been embroiled in a protracted legal tussle with Ripple Labs since 2020 over claims of an unregistered securities offering.

Flipsider:

  • NFTs have been used to donate to the Ukrainian crisis in recent weeks with a rare Cryptopunk donation.

Why You Should Care

NFTs have risen in popularity, amounting to sales running into millions of dollars and expanding cases. The proliferation of these non-fungible tokens has piqued the interest of the SEC.

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