We didn’t have a great month for the crypto markets. The bears reigned, and Terra (LUNA) collapsed along with billion dollars. Curiously enough, Bitcoin has increased a bit in the last week, bringing recovery hopes. Let’s explore May in the cryptocurrency world.
- Bitcoin (BTC) lost over 19% in the last month. Almost all of the crypto market was dragged by it, decreasing by over 23% in total market capitalization [CoinMarketCap]. Despite this, TRON (TRX) stayed bullish, increasing by over 28% in May. They even launched a new algorithmic stablecoin, the Decentralized USD (USDD).
- Terra (LUNA) and its native stablecoin, TerraUSD (UST), collapsed completely. UST lost its peg to the dollar in the wake of a massive sell-off, and LUNA went into a deadly spiral from there. Now, Do Kwon (Terra founder) is facing a class-action lawsuit. Despite this, most of the Terra community voted to launch “LUNA 2.0”, without UST, to try to rebuild the ecosystem.
- The DeFi markets didn’t save from the bears either. The Total Value Locked (TVL) in these protocols decreased by over 23% in May [DeFi Pulse]. That’s no wonder, considering that the main coins associated with it, like Ethereum, ソラナ, or Terra itself decreased in value. Meanwhile, the Non-Fungible Tokens (NFT) market also took a blow, with general sales decreasing by over 95% [NonFungible].
- Fears over a global financial crisis are spreading. The war in Ukraine, the supply chain crisis due to strict lockdowns in China, and the rampant inflation worldwide could be the triggers. Currently, over 66% of countries have an inflation rate of over 5%. The United States and Europe have seen their inflation rates increasing as well, which is no good news for the global picture. In this case, the crypto market could be affected too.
- The European Parliament is about to vote on applying the “travel rule” to all crypto transactions. This implies that every regulated exchange operating inside the eurozone would be obliged to report every crypto transaction, even the ones below 1,000 EUR (previous threshold). The personal information about senders and recipients would be exposed to the authorities.
- On the other hand, Paraguay and Uzbekistan are aiming to legalize Bitcoin and cryptos in their territories. The first country wants to take advantage of its energy surplus to attract crypto miners. In Uzbekistan, a presidential decree establishes the need to issue licenses for cryptocurrency providers and mining pools, while legalizing the crypto trading starting in 2023.
- Russia and Kazakhstan changed their rules for Bitcoin miners. In Russia, only institutional entities, or registered individuals would be able to practice crypto mining. In addition, the energy fees would increase for them. Kazakhstan is also considering the same increase, and it’s asking for more detailed documents and data from its miners to approve licenses.
- China is again inside the cryptocurrency picture. The Shanghai Higher Court treated a civil case 約Bitcoin, which led them to declare this currency as protected property. That conflicts with the 全面禁止 established by the central government. Besides, new data suggests that the Chinese bitcoin miners are (illegally) active again. They now have at least 21% of the total hash rate.
- Due to the Terra collapse, lawmakers worldwide are accelerating their regulatory proposals around cryptocurrencies. The European Commission is considering banning large-scale stablecoins inside their territory. Likewise, the G7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, USA, and UK) are urging “to advance the swift development and implementation of consistent and comprehensive regulation (for crypto).”
- Around $1.55 billion have been stolen from DeFi platforms in 2022 so far —which already surpasses the whole amount from 2021 [Peckshield]. Only during May, around 19 DeFi platforms have been hacked or were scams. The amount stolen in the last month goes over $120 million [DeFiYield].
- A major attack was announced last month against the Terra-based protocol Mirror. Apparently, a hacker discovered an exploit seven months ago and extracted at least $90 million. Nobody noticed until they did it again more recently to extract another $2 million.
- Costa Rica and several countries in Latin America are being strongly attacked by the ransomware group known as “Conti”. This criminal group is sending malware to kidnap sensitive data from governments and companies, so they can demand a millionaire ransom in bitcoins. Costa Rica 宣言 a national emergency since the hackers kidnapped the public systems with private data from citizens. USA is offering a reward of $10 million for any information against the Conti group.
- A simultaneous phishing attack hit CoinGecko, Etherscan, Quickswap, DEXTools, and other platforms. A malicious pop-up tried to lead the users to connect their MetaMask wallets to a fraudulent domain. None of the affected websites reported losses, though. Not much later, MetaMask 発売 a free service to help victims of crypto scams.
- Scammers on social media are taking advantage of the Terra collapse. They’re offering help and refunds to the LUNA and UST investors who lost important amounts during the crash. Following their indications, unaware victims may deposit ETH およびNFT to the criminals.
- Elon Musk paused his deal to buy Twitter. This is because Twitter may have over 20% of fake accounts and bots, and their CEO refused to show data to prove the contrary. If the negotiations end well, this famous social media could be more open to using cryptocurrencies.
- Litecoin (LTC) implemented the privacy protocol MimbleWimble and the sidechain technology Extension Blocks (EB). Now, their users can enjoy higher privacy for their transactions, and LTCs can be handled inside and outside the main chain with the Extension Blocks.
- The Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) 119 is being heavily discussed by the community. This BIP is meant to improve Bitcoin transactions by adding some extra features, like setting the future BTC spending. However, it hasn’t been widely tested, and numerous developers consider that is too soon to apply it.
- The anonymous creator of the memecoin 柴犬 (SHIB), Ryoshi, deleted his blog and disappeared from social media. Concerns were raised among the community of the coin, so, Shytoshi Kusama (lead Shiba developer) published his own thoughts about it. According to him, Ryoshi is just leaving the project in the hands of the community, and the rest of the team will continue to work on this ecosystem.