Facebook made headlines again this week, whilst the EGBA called for a crackdown on player protection in the EU online gambling market. These headlines and more, caught our attention this week.
Crypto & Blockchain
US Regulators “stifling” crypto– Circle- the cryptocurrency startup backed by Goldman Sachs has accused US regulators of frustrating and stifling the crypto market through ongoing ambiguity over the regulation of digital assets. By failing to provide clarity on crypto, they are hurting both the national and international market. It was also reported that Circle were laying off 10% of their staff, a move they also blamed on the current US regulatory climate.
Bestmix.io shut down after joint Europol investigation– One of the world’s largest crypto mixing sites, bestmix.io has been shut down in the first law enforcement movement of its type. The investigation which started in June 2018 resulted in a number of servers being seized as well as the IP addresses, bitcoin addresses, and transaction details of thousands of people who are suspected to have used the site to clean dirty money.
Facebook set to launch cryptocurrency in 2020– The social media giant is due to launch its GlobalCoin cryptocurrency in 2020, according to reports. It is believed that the coin and a digital payment system will be active and available in 12 countries by the end of Q1 next year. The idea behind the coin is to create a way to effect safe and affordable digital payments without the need for a bank account. The move will signal a new and unprecedented era of crypto adoption across Facebooks 2 billion and counting regular users.
G28 Asia takes place in Macao– This week the Global Gaming Expo Asia 2019 took place in Macao. The largest and most well attended year so far, over 18,000 visitors came from all over the continent and the world to network, listen to panels, and to explore the 200 exhibitors over 34,000 sq metres of event. Also in attendance was Fast Offshore Director, Ron Mendelson who described it as an “incredibly beneficial event” in terms of meeting new clients, new international partners, and observing new and exciting developments in the market.
EGBA calls for more focus on iGaming– With the European Parliamentary elections due to take place this weekend, the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has called for the new Parliament and Commission to “focus more on the online gambling market”. They want regulators and policy makers to put consumer safety and protection at the forefront of matters, citing a “lack of common EU rules” as a significant risk.
Bet365 to expand Malta base due to Brexit– Bet365, the British betting company with over 35 million customers has confirmed it will increase its operational presence in Malta. This is due to ongoing concerns regarding if and when the UK will leave the EU and the implication it will have on cross-border business. The British Prime Minister, Theresa May also resigned today, plunging the country, and Brexit into further uncertainty. Malta is considered the perfect base for those looking to relocate.
GBP gains following Theresa May departure– Following the resignation of the British Prime Minister, the GBP has seen welcome relief as it showed gains against the Euro, Dollar and other currencies. Whilst some believed it would send the value of the Sterling into a tailspin it seems to have had the opposite effect. GBP/USD gained by 0.14% and GBP/EUR by 0.16% at the time of writing.
SEC delays ruling on crypto ETF– The SEC has delayed its decision on the proposed VanEck ETF pending a number of questions and clarifications that it wants the applicant to make. Most of the queries focussed around the issue of potential market manipulation, signalling that the Authority is still not convinced in terms of cryptos security and viability. VanEck have until August to answer the questions, but a decision could come as late as October.