Weekly Roundup

Crypto Complaints: According to analysis from Dynamic Securities Analytics Inc., the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau received 2,734 confirmed crypto-related consumer complaints against digital-asset-centric companies between Jan. 1, 2020, and Aug. 26, 2022, ranging from fraud and scams to an inability to withdraw funds. Firms involved the complaints include both crypto-native companies and traditional financial institutions. This upward trend could drive additional regulatory scrutiny of crypto.

Futures Commission Merchant: Chicago Exchange CME submitted paperwork to register a futures commission merchant. If approved and CME gets into the brokerage business, investors could bypass existing brokers and connect to the exchange operator directly for futures trade.

Crypto Comfort: According to a Bankrate survey, Americans, and millennials particularly, are less comfortable investing in crypto this year than they were last year. In 2022, only about 30% of millennials feel comfortable investing in cryptocurrency, down from about 50% in 2021.

Crypto Report: The Financial Stability Oversight Council, chaired by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, released a report highlighting several vulnerabilities in the crypto market. The report is the council’s first major report on cryptocurrencies, and comes at a time when concerns about vulnerabilities in the crypto markers have been particularly pronounced.

Celebrity Promotion: The SEC charged Kim Kardashian for promoting an EthereumMax crypto asset security on social media without disclosing the payment she received for the promotion. Kardashian will pay $1.26 million to settle the charges and is barred from promoting crypto for three years. The case serves as a reminder to public figures that the law requires them to disclose when and how much they are paid to promote investing in securities.

Crypto Secure: On Tuesday, Mastercard will debut “Crypto Secure” – a new piece of software that helps banks identify and cut off transactions from fraud-prone crypto exchanges. It will use AI algorithms to determine the risk of crime associated with crypto exchanges on the Mastercard payment network.

In the Mix: This Week’s Top FinTech Thought Leader

  • Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum, wanted to invent a blockchain technology that could be used for more than just digital money. Vitarin’s new book, “Proof of Stake,” is a collection of essays that lay out a vision of crypto as a truly transformative technology — one with the potential to revolutionize governance to voting to identity. 

  • James Nguyen, Robinhood’s lead lawyer and compliance chief, has left to join Sky Mavis as its general counsel. His departure is the latest staffing change at Robinhood, which has cut more than 1,000 jobs so far this year as it continues to feel impact from a slowdown in customer trading activity.

  • Daniel Leon, co-founder of Celsius, resigned this week. This follows the resignation of Celsius’ other co-founder and CEO, Alex Mashinsky, last week. Celsius is currently accepting bids for its assets and may consider doing an auction on Oct. 20.

  • Study Hall is back with a second season! In season two we’ll explore the ins and outs of financial technology together. We’re kicking off the season with a conversation on fintech and the elections with Tarek Mansour, the Founder of Kalshi. Head on over to buzzsprout.com/1893041/11369459 for a sneak peak!