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It turns out last week’s slow news cycle and relatively low volatility was just the calm before the storm. What in the crypto world is going on with bitcoin these days?

First up, here’s a snapshot of how bitcoin and its buddies have fared in the past seven days as of October 12, 12:15 am GMT. Looks like those consolidation patterns finally got breakouts!

Cryptocurrencies Weekly Performance (Image from Coin360)
Cryptocurrencies Weekly Performance (Image from Coin360)

But what is up with this sea of red? I’ve rounded up the latest set of news to keep y’all up to speed.

Return of regulatory concerns?

The spotlight seems to have shifted back to the overlords of the financial world as global institutions and regulators had a thing or two to say.

Early in the week, market watchers buzzed about the IMF’s warning on cybersecurity and cryptocurrencies in its latest World Economic Outlook report:

Cybersecurity breaches and cyber attacks on critical financial infrastructure represent an additional source of risk because they could undermine cross-border payment systems and disrupt the flow of goods and services. Continued rapid growth of crypto assets could create new vulnerabilities in the international financial system.

Furthermore, the IMF pointed out that financial watchdogs should not waver in their industry oversight, citing:

“An indiscriminate rollback of post-crisis regulatory reform and oversight—both domestically and internationally—could encourage excessive risk-taking, leading to a further buildup of financial vulnerabilities.”

The Financial Stability Board, on the other hand, assured that digital assets don’t pose a threat to global financial stability. But before y’all think the FSB is being supportive, a review of their statement reveals that they’re actually throwing shade when it comes to crypto-assets’ low liquidity, the use of leverage, market risks from volatility, and operational risks:

“Based on these features, crypto-assets lack the key attributes of sovereign currencies and do not serve as a common means of payment, a stable store of value, or a mainstream unit of account.”

Around the middle of the week, the SEC shared that it asked a U.S. district court to enforce a subpoena related to its investigation into a $100 million ICO pump-and-dump scheme involving St. James Trust.

It wasn’t long before the financial watchdog halted a separate planned ICO by BlockVest that falsely claimed it got regulator approval.

To top it all off, the U.S. Congress will be holding a hearing on “Exploring the Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Ecosystem” and no less than Nouriel Roubini will be testifying. Now Roubini has been dubbed Dr. Doom, not for his role in Fantastic Four, but for predicting the U.S. housing and financial crisis in 2007. He hasn’t been a huge fan of bitcoin either.

You can bet crypto fans aren’t feeling very optimistic about those pending bitcoin ETF applications with the SEC, huh?

Bitfinex suspended fiat deposits

Adding to the gloom and doom sentiment weighing on the cryptocurrency industry over the past few days are reports that Bitfinex has suspended fiat wire deposits.

It’s no secret that the fourth largest crypto exchange in the world has been in the hot seat due to rumors that it was facing insolvency issues. In a recent statement, Bitfinex admitted that “complications continue to exist” when it comes to fiat transactions.

However, the exchange clarified that the suspension is temporary and that fiat deposits in USD, EUR, JPY, and GBP can resume within a week. Bitfinex, however, has yet to provide a reason for this suspension, so it’s no surprise that rumors of insolvency keep swirling. to launch its own exchange?

On a less downbeat note, may be gearing up to launch its own exchange as shared by CEO Roger Ver (a.k.a. Bitcoin Jesus) in an interview with Bloomberg.

This might be good news for bitcoin’s rival Bitcoin Cash, which would be the base-currency of this exchange. Recall that Ver, who is an early investor in bitcoin, has switched allegiance to BCH as he says that this altcoin better fulfills the original intent of Satoshi Nakamoto.

For now, though, this exchange idea is in its early stages as Ver is still looking for a partner to create the exchange internally.