The Association of Banks of Russia, an organization that includes more than 300 Russian banks and financial institutions, has called on lawmakers to criminalize storing crypto outside of centralized exchanges on noncustodial wallets, local news agency Izvestia reported on Monday.
In contrast to accounts at centralized crypto exchanges, noncustodial or self-custodial wallets allow users to store crypto without relying on a third party that is able to freeze, block or seize the user's crypto assets. This essentially enables investors to “be their own bank” by getting full control over their crypto and the associated private key.
But the Association of Banks of Russia apparently is not a big fan of letting people control their crypto. The association has developed a framework for foreclosure on crypto stored on noncustodial wallets due to the “serious difficulties” of seizing crypto on such wallets from debtors and criminals, the association’s vice president Anatoly Kozlachkov said.
Developed jointly with the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the framework aims to introduce criminal liability for not storing cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) on noncustodial wallets. The association also proposed to introduce criminal liability for refusing to provide keys to authorized agencies.
The association reportedly sent out a letter with the proposed framework to several agencies and regulators including the Bank of Russia and the Federal Financial Monitoring Service in mid-April.
The bankers admitted that their proposal is complicated by technical difficulties associated with forced access to noncustodial wallets due to the anonymity of owners and the technical complexity of accessing such funds without the consent of their owners. “This makes it practically impossible to enforce seizure of such assets,” the report notes.
In a statement published by former video-game giant Atari on Monday, the firm says it has, effective immediately, terminated all license agreements with its joint venture partner ICICB Group and its subsidiaries. Previously, the two had jointly created the Atari Chain and the namesake Atari Token (ATRI). However, the company has had a change of heart regarding the deal, and announced it was disclaiming interest in the joint venture, stating "ICICB is not authorized to represent Atari or its brands in any manner."
"Atari disclaims any interest in the [...] Joint Venture, currently promoted as Atari Tokens, and related websites, whitepapers and social media channels are unlicensed, unsanctioned and are outside the control of Atari."
Moving forward, Atari plans to create, distribute and solely manage a new proprietary token focusing on gaming, community and utility. But it appears there will be some form of respite for ATRI investors. As told by Atari, the company has taken a "snapshot" of ATRI holdings as of April 18, 2022, at 6:00 pm CET. Atari will then implement a future exchange of a new token for the ATRI tokens held as of that time.
"Only tokens present in wallets as of the snapshot and in amounts equivalent to those captured at the snapshot will be eligible. Any tokens acquired after the snapshot will not be eligible," the company said.
Atari has been an active player in the crypto space, with a keen focus on developing nonfungible tokens. At the time of publication, the ATRI "legacy" token is down 9.47% in the past 24 hours, lowering its market cap to $26 million.
Bitcoin (BTC) may be heading under $40,000, but fresh data shows that demand from major investors is anything but decreasing.
For Ki Young Ju, CEO of on-chain analytics platform CryptoQuant, institutional BTC buying “might be the big narrative” in the crypto space once more.
Coinbase Pro shifts serious amounts of BTC
Ki highlighted figures from Coinbase Pro, the professional trading offshoot of United States exchange Coinbase, that confirm that large tranches of BTC continue to leave its books.
Those tranches totaled 30,000 BTC in a single day this week, and the event is not an isolated one, with March seeing similar behavior.
“30k BTC flowed out from Coinbase today,” he noted.
“Institutional buys might be the big narrative again because the Executive Order did not create any hurdle.”
Last month’s executive order from United States President Joe Biden, designed to investigate various aspects of the cryptocurrency ecosystem, has seemingly not deterred large-volume investors looking for exposure.
The trend is apparent across exchanges, as Cointelegraph reported this week, and April is currently attempting to match March in terms of overall outflows.
The reduction in supply contrasts with a troubling macro picture that continues to pressure risk assets, including crypto.
Bitcoin’s correlation to equities, themselves at the mercy of central bank policy, needs to break in order for conditions to improve, but analysts say that the process will be anything but smooth when it happens.
“Correlation breaks eventually — for multiple reasons,” commentator Dylan LeClair explained earlier this week.
“My guess: Eventually credit system breaks and volatility explodes. BTC follows but more because of deriv traders and not spot selling. BTC bears conditioned to fade every rally get rekt as spot supply continues to constrain.”
This Daily Dose was brought to you by Cointelegraph.