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Two Whales Just Withdrew a Billion Dollars From Coinbase

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  • Over one billion dollars has left Coinbase in the past day.
  • Comparable amounts of crypto have been leaving wallets recently.
  • The transaction comes amidst a momentous week for Bitcoin, which hit a new ATH of $57,808.

Today, 13,204 Bitcoins left Coinbase for unknown wallets. That’s just over three-quarters of a billion dollars. According to Whale Alert, 36 transactions were made, each valued at between 351 and 391 Bitcoins, between the hours of 4 and 5 PM UTC.

Last night, Whale Alert tweeted that 4,501 BTC had left Coinbase for an unknown wallet, meaning in the past 24 hours more than a billion dollars worth of Bitcoin has been transferred out of Coinbase, though it’s not known whether the transactions are related.

What’s going on?

It could be an over-the-counter desk reshuffling wallets, a Bitcoin not-quite billionaire moving cash to cold storage, or a mafia money-laundering scheme. It’s difficult to tell: the transferer protected their privacy well, generating a new address for each transaction.

This is not the first time a large Coinbase movement happened this month, either. On January 31, over 15,200 Bitcoins, worth approximately $500 million at the time,  were transferred out of Coinbase Pro. Back then, CryptoQuant CEO Ki Young Ju told Decrypt that he put it down to over-the-counter trades from institutional HODLers, saying, “I believe this is the strongest bullish signal.”

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A bull run powered by institutions

Those who have been following the crypto news over the last fortnight will know that Bitcoin passed several milestones. Firstly, Tesla disclosed that it had bought $1.5 billion in Bitcoin. Assuming Tesla hasn’t sold any of it, Elon Musk’s electric car company will have profited more from this purchase alone than from the combined sales of its cars last year.

Another huge bit of institutional interest came from asset management company BlackRock, whose CIO Rick Rieder announced that the firm is investing some of its clients’ $8.67 trillion money pot into Bitcoin.

BlackRock isn’t the first asset management company to do so. Guggenheim already has, with its CIO this month upgrading his Bitcoin price projection to $600,000. And BNY Mellon, one of America’s oldest banks, announced last week that it would add crypto asset management services for its clients. Lastly, Michael Saylor announced that his company MicroStrategy will sell $1.05 billion in debt securities to buy up more Bitcoin.

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So really, hands up! Who’s the whale?

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Grayscale

Grayscale’s Top Executive Joins Robinhood as New Chief Compliance Officer

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Robinhood hires a new CCO, the chief compliance officer of Grayscale

Robinhood brokerage app has welcomed Benjamin Melnicki as a new Chief Compliance Officer, who is also the holder of the same position at Grayscale Investments. He joined Grayscale in early January this year.

At the moment, Robinhood’s cryptocurrency arm is facing scrutiny from financial regulators. Last year, Robinhood was a target of an investigation connected to anti money laundering and certain cybersecurity problems experiences by its crypto division.

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As reported by U.Today previously, later this year, the brokerage firm plans to roll out cryptocurrency wallets for its users. The trials of wallets will kick off in October and will allow customers to deposit and withdraw cryptocurrencies to addresses beyond Robinhood seamlessly.

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Crypto Exchange

Average Aussie crypto portfolio grew 258% in FY 20-21, survey reveals

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The average portfolio size on Australian cryptocurrency exchange BTC Markets has grown from $577.65 (795.5 Australian dollars) to $2,069.16 (2849.5 AUD) in the financial year 2021, signaling a 258.2% increase in portfolio holdings, according to exchange data compiled by Statista on a recent BTC Markets survey.

Data on the survey shows that the average portfolio size of female and male investors in fiscal 20-21 on BTC Markets was $1,924.30 (2,650 AUD) and $2,214.03 (3,049 AUD), respectively. However, in 2020, the average portfolio size of female Aussie investors exceeded male investors slightly. 

Transaction data on the exchange also showed a pattern of growing investment demand with aging. Considering the data provided by BTC Market on Australia’s average initial investment, investors above 65 years old have invested roughly $3,158.03, the highest ofall demographics.

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Following an incremental reduction across the various age groups, the youngest cryptocurrency traders, ranging from 18 to 24 years, tend to make comparatively small investments, standing at $792.96 on average. While older Australian crypto investors outweigh the new generation in initial investment, the younger crowd shows comparatively more activity in terms of daily trades.

Resonating the findings above, a September report from financial comparison website Finder shows that one in six Australians own cryptocurrencies, amounting to $8 billion in total investment. The report suggests that, like many other users in advanced industrialized countries, Australians were increasingly viewing cryptocurrencies as a new asset class. 

According to Cointelegraph’s report on the matter, Bitcoin (BTC) is the most popular cryptocurrency for the Australian crypto market held by 9% of investors. Other popular investments include Ether (ETH), Dogecoin (DOGE) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). The report showed that, despite the growth in crypto investments, a significant barrier to entry for Australians is the difficulty in understanding crypto and the risks related to volatility.

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Switzerland to Impose Anti-Money Laundering Rules on Crypto Providers: Report

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FINMA requires all cryptocurrency providers to step up their game and monitor whether criminals use digital assets in illicit transactions.

The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority – FINMA – would reportedly require local digital asset providers to take additional steps in preventing criminals from employing cryptocurrencies. The watchdog would also turn its sight towards bitcoin ATMs as it believes that drug dealers often use these machines.

FINMA Targets Criminals Operating with Crypto

According to a Finews report, Switzerland’s financial regulator – the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority or simply FINMA – would closely supervise local crypto providers as an attempt to clamp down on money-laundering transactions.

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Swiss platforms and brokers dealing with digital assets would have to enhance their monitoring efforts and observe if bad actors employ cryptocurrencies. The Bern-based watchdog believes the initiative is “urgently necessary,” stressing that criminals use the asset class even to fund terrorism acts.

FINMA also turned its attention towards bitcoin automated teller machines. According to the regulator, drug dealers frequently use such ATMs as payment systems. It is worth noting that Switzerland is a relatively small nation, but its 130 Bitcoin automated teller machines place it in the sixth position among the countries with the most stations.

FINMA also passed an anti-money laundering provision according to which it lowered the threshold for unidentified crypto purchases from 5,000 Swiss Francs (CHF) to 1,000 CHF (around $1,080). Or, in other words, all financial providers dealing with digital assets have to collect data on anyone initiating transactions that exceed this amount.

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UBS: Crypto Regulations Could Spell Trouble

One of the leading banks in Switzerland – UBS – recently shared its views on the hot topic of digital asset regulations as it indicated that implementing certain rules might negatively impact the market.

Furthermore, the bank warned its customers that regulatory crackdowns can pop the “bubble-like” crypto markets. The Swiss bank also labeled the asset class as “speculative” alerting that it could be dangerous for professional investors:

“While we can’t rule out future price gains in cryptos, we see this as a speculative market that poses significant risks to professional investors.”

On another note, though, when the cryptocurrency market was booming at the beginning of May, UBS demonstrated a different attitude. Back then, it intended to enable its wealthy customers to receive digital asset exposure later in 2021 through third-party vehicles.

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