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Grayscale Refiles for Bitcoin ETF as Barry Silbert Steps Down

Grayscale Refiles for Bitcoin ETF as Barry Silbert Steps Down

Grayscale's new ETF filing and CEO change, Cathie Wood's Bitcoin market insights, and MicroStrategy's bold BTC investment lead today's crypto updates.

Welcome to another edition of Datawallet Daily. As always, we’ve curated the must-know crypto stories from the last 24 hours just for you:

Grayscale Refiles for Bitcoin ETF as Barry Silbert Steps Down

Grayscale has amended its filing to convert the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) into a spot Bitcoin ETF, coinciding with Barry Silbert’s resignation from Grayscale’s board. Silbert, CEO of parent company Digital Currency Group, stepped down amid an SEC investigation into DCG. This move is speculated to boost the chances of ETF approval.

The filing’s key change is Grayscale’s acceptance of a cash creation model, a significant shift from the typical in-kind model for commodity ETFs. This model involves creating or redeeming shares through cash transactions, aligning with the SEC’s stance on mitigating risks related to anti-money laundering and KYC compliance. Critics argue that this approach may pose higher risks for investors seeking Bitcoin exposure through an ETF.

Cathie Wood: Brief Dip Expected After Bitcoin ETF Approval

ARK Invest CEO Cathie Wood anticipates a short-term “sell the news” reaction following the potential approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF in the U.S. Despite a likely initial sell-off due to investors capitalizing on profits from the anticipatory price rise, Wood remains optimistic about the long-term impact. She argues that a spot Bitcoin ETF will provide an easy access point for institutional investors to allocate a portion of their trillions in assets to Bitcoin. 

Even a small percentage allocation could significantly move Bitcoin’s price, given its limited supply of 21 million coins. ARK Invest, in collaboration with 21Shares, has filed for its own spot Bitcoin ETF and has experienced positive and detailed discussions with the SEC, fueling optimism for approval by January.

Michael Saylor Buys Another 14,620 BTC in One Week

MicroStrategy, led by CEO Michael Saylor, has significantly increased its Bitcoin holdings, now possessing 189,150 BTC valued at over $8 billion. This surge in value is the result of the firm's latest acquisition of 14,620 BTC, acquired between November 30th and December 26th for over $615 million. The company, a staunch advocate of Bitcoin, has integrated BTC acquisition into its long-term strategy, reflecting positively in its stock performance with shares rising more than 300% over the years, including a 3.2% increase recently.

The timing of MicroStrategy's growing Bitcoin investment coincides with the anticipated approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF, which could further boost the digital asset's value. This potential development, expected to be decided next month, could lead to unprecedented growth in Bitcoin's market rally, potentially benefiting MicroStrategy's portfolio significantly.

BONK Dips 13% as Solana Faces Post-Frenzy Profit Taking

The Solana ecosystem recently witnessed a downturn in token prices, hinting at profit-taking following a substantial surge. The meme coin BONK experienced a 13% drop, with other tokens like WIF and ANALOS also declining. Established tokens such as ORCA and JTO saw modest falls. Solana’s native token, SOL, briefly slumped before recovering, amid notable trading liquidations. 

Despite this, trading volume on Solana’s decentralized exchanges remained robust. The uptick in Solana’s ecosystem, sparked by BONK’s rapid ascent and mainstream exchange listings, led to increased network activity, with total value locked on applications reaching levels not seen since July 2022.

China Busts $2.2B Crypto-Based Underground Banking Scheme

Chinese authorities have cracked down on a $2.2 billion underground banking operation that used foreign cryptocurrency trading platforms to bypass the country’s capital controls. The scheme involved purchasing virtual currencies and selling them through overseas platforms to convert yuan into foreign currencies illegally. 

During the operation, cryptocurrencies worth approximately $28,000, including Tether and Litecoin, were seized. The illegal network had transferred over $2.2 billion across numerous bank accounts in 17 provinces. China’s stringent foreign exchange laws, which limit currency exchange and heavily regulate capital flow, are speculated to be a key reason behind the nation’s strict anti-cryptocurrency policies.

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