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Ether futures ETFs launching, SBF trial to begin and 3AC’s Su Zhu arrested: Hodler’s Digest, Sept. 24-30

Ether futures ETFs to debut in the United States, Sam Bankman-Fried’s trial to begin and 3AC co-founder Su Zhu arrested.
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Ether futures ETFs to debut in the United States, Sam Bankman-Fried’s trial to begin and 3AC co-founder Su Zhu arrested.

Top Stories This Week

Ethereum futures ETFs to start trading next week

Investment firm Valkyrie will start offering exposure to Ether futures in the coming days. On Sept. 28, the firm told Cointelegraph that its Bitcoin Strategy ETF will allow investors access to Ether and Bitcoin futures under one wrapper, making it one of the first firms to do so amid several pending applications with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Starting Oct. 3, the funds name will be updated to the Valkyrie Bitcoin and Ether Strategy ETF. Asset manager VanEck also disclosed its upcoming Ethereum Strategy ETF, which will be listed on the Chicago Board Options Exchange in the coming days. Analysts suggested that a potential U.S. government shutdown might have accelerated the launch of Ether futures ETFs.

SBF trial dates revealed: FTX founder to stand trial over 6 weeks

Former FTX CEO Sam SBF Bankman-Fried will spend at least 21 days in court as part of his criminal trial, which will begin in earnest on Oct. 4 and last until Nov. 9, according to a newly released trial calendar posted to the public court docket. The first official date of the Bankman-Fried trial is Oct. 4, where the participants will begin discussing seven fraud charges laid against SBF. There are two substantive charges where the prosecution must convince a jury that Bankman-Fried committed the crime. Five other conspiracy charges involve the prosecution convincing a jury that Bankman-Fried planned to commit the crimes. The former FTX CEO has been serving pre-trial detention at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center since Aug. 11. If considered guilty of fraud, Bankman-Fried is likely to spend the rest of his life in prison, legal specialists explained to Cointelegraph.

3ACs Su Zhu arrested in Singapore

Co-founder of Three Arrows Capital (3AC) Su Zhu was detained at Changi Airport in Singapore while trying to leave. Teneo, the joint liquidator of the now-bankrupt hedge fund, told Cointelegraph that Zhus arrest followed a committal order from the Singapore Courts, which is a directive used to imprison someone for contempt of court. On Sept. 25, Teneo secured this committal order, alleging that Zhu didnt comply with a court order. His arrest is part of an ongoing investigation to retrieve funds for 3ACs creditors. The $10 billion hedge fund crashed in 2022 due to the collapse of the Terra ecosystem. A similar committal order was granted against Kyle Davies, also co-founder of 3AC. His whereabouts remain unknown.

Binance urges users to convert euros to USDT after Paysafe debank

Binance has warned its European users to convert their euro (EUR) balances to Tether by Oct. 31 due to the loss of support from its banking partner, Paysafe. Paysafe ceased processing EUR deposits for Binance users on Sept. 25. While EUR withdrawals to bank accounts remain available, Paysafe users wont be able to engage in EUR spot trading. Binances token swap feature, Binance Convert, will also restrict EUR transactions. Paysafe previously facilitated fiat deposits and withdrawals for Binance users in Europe, including via bank transfer in the European Unions Single Euro Payments Area. The move is the latest to add to Binances regulatory and debanking woes in the West.

SEC delays spot Bitcoin ETF decision for BlackRock, Invesco and Bitwise

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has again postponed its decision on several spot Bitcoin ETF applications, including those from BlackRock, Invesco, Bitwise and Valkyrie, ahead of a potential government shutdown. Bloomberg ETF analyst James Seyffart anticipates similar delays for Fidelity, VanEck, and WisdomTree. These delays came two weeks before the applicants expected second deadline. Seyffart links the premature delays to an anticipated U.S. government shutdown on Oct. 1, which would impact financial regulators and federal agencies.

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $26,895, Ether (ETH) at $1,667 and XRP at $0.53. The total market cap is at $1.07 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Compound (COMP) at 23.71%, Chainlink (LINK) at 15.12% and THORchain (RUNE) at 14.51%. 

The top three altcoin losers of the week are Immutable (IMX) at -9.80%, UNUS SED LEO (LEO) at -5.38% and XDC Network (XDC) at -4.61%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraphs market analysis.

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Most Memorable Quotations

You [Gary Gensler] are kneecapping the U.S. capital markets with the avalanche of red tape coming out of your commission.

Andy Barr, U.S. representative

A central bank that introduces a CBDC should increase the choices for society, not diminish them.”

Agustn Carstens, general manager at the Bank of International Settlements

Looking like the SEC is gonna let a bunch of #Ethereum futures ETFs go next week potentially.

James Seyffart, analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence

Do you think its possible for you [Gary Gensler] to serve as an impartial regulator and not favor large financial intermediaries?

Tom Emmer, U.S. representative

[Stablecoins] will be a big driver of economic freedom in the decade ahead.

Jesse Pollak, head of protocols at Coinbase

The symbiosis between street art and Bitcoin is a powerful one. By working together, these two movements help to create a more just and equitable world.

Street, pseudonymous co-founder of the Street Cyer artist collective

Prediction of the Week 

Bitcoin shorts keep burning as BTC price seeks to hold $27K

Bitcoin (BTC) bounced around $27,000 on Sept. 29 as a challenge to month-to-date highs dragged BTC price action upward. Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView showed the largest cryptocurrency attempting to hold gains after a classic short squeeze.

The day prior offered a trip past the $27,000 mark, with Bitcoin bulls unable to seal a fresh peak for September. Topping out at $27,300 on Bitstamp, BTC price strength returned to consolidate, still up 4% versus the weeks low at the time of writing.

Analyzing the situation on low timeframes (LTFs), popular pseudonymous trader Skew said that the upside had come courtesy of derivatives markets, with spot traders selling at the highs. LTF stuff but pretty clear spot absorption around the high so $27.2K is an important price area to clear for spot buyers, he explained on X (formerly Twitter).

Skew subsequently noted that $27,200 remained a rejection point on the day, ahead of the Wall Street open. Going into next week, he added, the market was likely to hunt both sides of the book.

FUD of the Week 

Ben BitBoy Armstrong arrested on livestream over Lambo dispute

Crypto influencer Ben Armstrong, formerly known as BitBoy, was arrested on Sept. 25 while livestreaming outside a former business associates house, claiming the associate had his Lamborghini. He was charged with loitering/prowling and simple assault by placing another in fear and was held for over eight hours before being released on a $2,600 bond and $40 in fees. In Georgia, the misdemeanor charges of loitering and prowling could result in a fine of up to $1,000, up to one year in jail, or both.

Crypto exchange claiming $1.4B trading volume uses reportedly fake license data

An investigation by Cointelegraph revealed that several cryptocurrency platforms, reporting significant daily trades on CoinMarketCap, may have provided misleading information about their crypto licenses. Bitspay, for instance, which has a daily trading volume of $1.4 billion on CoinMarketCap and ranks as the fourth-largest crypto exchange, claimed to be licensed in Estonia. However, after inquiries by Cointelegraph, Bitspay quickly removed the potentially false license data and no longer provides details about its registration or licensing.

Huobi Global hacked for $7.9M: Report

Huobi Globals HTX crypto exchange was hacked on Sept. 24, according to a report from blockchain analytics platform CyVers. A total of $7.9 million of crypto has been drained in the attack. A known Huobi hot wallet posted a message to the attacker in Chinese. According to the message, the exchange knows the identity of the attacker and has offered to let them keep 5% of the drained funds as a white-hat bonus, but only if the attacker returns the remaining 95%. Binance CEO Changpeng CZ Zhao offered the help of the exchanges security team in investigating the attack.

Blockchain detectives: Mt. Gox collapse saw birth of Chainalysis

From solving Mt. Gox to tracing crypto used by child abuse syndicates in Korea, Chainalysis has a long but sometimes controversial history.

US govt messed up my $250K Bitcoin price prediction: Tim Draper, Hall of Flame

Tim Drapers first big Bitcoin prediction came off without a hitch, but he says the current administration is making his second one look bad.

China dev fined 3 yrs salary for VPN use, 10M e-CNY airdrop: Asia Express

Chinese national fined three years’ salary for using VPN for remote work, Hangzhou airdrops 10M digital yuan, JPEX alleged Ponzi nears $200M, and more.

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Bitcoin price must break $31K to avoid 2023 ‘bearish fractal’

BTC price needs to recoup some more key levels before ditching longer-term bearish risk, the latest Bitcoin analysis says.



BTC price needs to recoup some more key levels before ditching longer-term bearish risk, the latest Bitcoin analysis says.

Bitcoin (BTC) held above $30,000 at the Oct. 23 Wall Street open as analysis said BTC price strength could cancel its “bearish fractal.”

BTC/USD 1-hour chart. Source: TradingView

BTC price preserves majority of early upside

Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView followed BTC/USD as it hovered near $30,700, still up 2.5% on Oct. 23.

The largest cryptocurrency made snap gains after the Oct. 22 weekly close, stopping just shy of $31,000 in what became its highest levels since July. 

Now, popular trader and analyst Rekt Capital is keen to see the $31,000 level break. 

“Bitcoin has Weekly Closed above the Lower High resistance to confirm the breakout,” he commented alongside the weekly chart.

BTC/USD annotated chart. Source: Rekt Capital/X

Rekt Capital argued that BTC/USD could disregard the bearish chart fractal in play throughout 2023 next. This had involved the two year-to-date highs near $32,000 forming a doubletop formation, with downside due as a result.

Specifically, Bitcoin requires a “breach” of $31,000 in order to do so. 

More encouraging cues came from the True Market Deviation indicator from on-chain analytics firm Glassnode.

As noted by its lead analyst, Checkmate, on Oct. 23, the metric, also known as the Average Active Investor (AVIV) profit ratio, has crossed a key level.

Bitcoin’s True Mean Market price (TMM) — the level that BTC/USD spends exactly 50% above or below — is now below its spot price, at $29,780. 

“Have we now paid our bear market dues?” Checkmate queried, describing TMM as Bitcoin’s “most accurate cost basis model.”

Bitcoin True Market Deviation (AVIV) chart. Source: Checkmate/X

Institutions awaken in “Uptober"

Analyzing the potential drivers of the rally, meanwhile, James Van Straten, research and data analyst at crypto insights firm CryptoSlate, flagged the potential approval of the United States’ first Bitcoin spot-price-based exchange-traded fund (ETF).

Related: BTC price nears 2023 highs — 5 things to know in Bitcoin this week

While not yet awarded the green light, a U.S. spot ETF is being treated as an inevitability after legal battles resulted in regulators losing sway.

“The potential approval of a spot ETF for Bitcoin has spurred a significant increase in bullish inflows in the crypto market,” Van Straten wrote in an update published on Oct. 23.

He noted that Glassnode data shows inflows via over-the-counter (OTC) trading desks spiking since late September.

“In addition, the Purpose Bitcoin ETF, with its holdings of approximately 25,000 Bitcoin, has observed consistent inflow throughout the past month. Even though these inflows might not be termed as ‘large,’ they denote a positive market sentiment,” he continued.

“This uptick in inflows across various platforms indicates an optimistic market response to the potential approval of a Bitcoin ETF, bolstering the overall landscape of digital assets.”
Bitcoin transfers to OTC desk wallets. Source: CryptoSlate/Glassnode

The largest Bitcoin institutional investment vehicle, the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), continues to see a lower discount to the Bitcoin spot price, having already seen its smallest negative margin since December 2021.

This stood at -13.12% as of Oct. 23, per data from monitoring resource CoinGlass.

GBTC premium vs. asset holdings vs. BTC/USD chart (screenshot). Source: CoinGlass

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.

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California bill aims to cap crypto ATM withdrawals at $1K per day to combat scams

A new legislative investigation found some crypto ATMs charging a premium as high as 33%, while a few ATMs had limits of up to $50,000.



A new legislative investigation found some crypto ATMs charging a premium as high as 33%, while a few ATMs had limits of up to $50,000. California legislators have proposed a new bill titled “Digital financial asset transaction kiosks,” calling for a cap on crypto ATM withdrawals of $1,000 per day in light of growing scams. Additionally, starting in 2025, the law would limit operators’ fees to $5 or 15% (whichever is higher). The bill, if approved, would come into effect on Jan. 1, 2024. The bill was introduced after legislative members visited a crypto ATM in Sacramento and found markups as high as 33% on some crypto assets compared with their prices on crypto exchanges. On average, a crypto ATM charges fees between 12% and 25%, according to a legislative analysis. Government officials also found ATMs with limits as high as $50,000, prompting them to take regulatory measures to curb such high premiums and withdrawal limits. There are more than 3,200 Bitcoin ATMs in California, according to Coin ATM Radar. Democratic State Senator Monique Limón, who co-authored the proposed legislation, said the “new bill is about ensuring that people who have been frauded in our communities don’t continue to watch our state step aside” when there are real issues happening. Another provision of the bill would require digital financial asset businesses to obtain a license from the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation by July 2025 Crypto ATMs are a popular way for people to exchange cash for their choice of cryptocurrency but have become a hub for scams and exploits because of the nature of transactions (i.e., hard cash). Unlike bank and wire transfers, each transaction leaves less of a trail. Related: CoinSmart president says crypto taxes are a ‘little bit more favorable’ outside US Some residents have recently been caught up in such scams, where the scammer persuades the victim to go to a nearby crypto ATM and deposit cash for the crypto of their choice. Some of those affected by ATM scams have lauded the bill and said the low transaction limit would give victims time to realize if they are being duped, reported the LA Times. On the other hand, crypto ATM businesses said the new bill would harm the small operators who must pay rent on their ATMs. The operators noted that the bill fails to address the core issue of the fraud and instead takes a punitive path focused on a specific technology. They warned such a move would shudder the industry and hurt consumers while doing nothing to stop bad actors. Magazine: Bitcoin is on a collision course with ‘Net Zero’ promises

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An airline just launched one of the country’s longest domestic flights

The trip from New York’s JFK to Anchorage International Airport will take over seven hours.



While the title for longest commercial flight in the world will soon be taken over by the 20-hour and 10,576-mile journey between Sydney and London that Australia's Qantas Airways  (QUBSF) - Get Free Report is preparing to launch in 2025, the U.S. is a big country with a number of long-haul domestic flights on its own.

Without even looking at U.S. territories overseas such as Guam or American Samoa, one can spend more than 10 hours in the air and end up only in another state. Some of the longest domestic flights in the U.S. include routes from Boston to Honolulu in Hawaii and Chicago to Alaska's Anchorage.

Related: The World's Longest Flight Is a New Route: Here's Where It Goes

In a move to bring more service from mainland U.S. to Alaska, Alaska Airlines  (ALK) - Get Free Report is about to launch its longest flight yet that is subsequently also one of the longest in the country — the route from New York's JFK to Anchorage International Airport will take over seven hours and cross 3,386 miles.

An Alaska Airlines aircraft.

Image source: Shutterstock

New flight takes travelers to 'land of midnight sun'

The route will debut on June 13, 2024 and take place daily on a Boeing 737-8  (BA) - Get Free Report. The airline recently invested in the plane with the longest capacity in its fleet to be able to serve faraway destinations on the East Coast.

More Travel:

"We're eager to welcome guests to our great state from the city that never sleeps to the land of the midnight sun on Alaska's new nonstop flight," Jillian Simpson, president and CEO of the Alaska Travel Industry Association, said in a statement. "There's so much to do in Anchorage and in the smaller towns nearby, mapping out your itinerary might be the toughest thing you do before heading west."

The route is part of Alaska Airlines' wider efforts to expand its coverage between Alaska and the mainland U.S. On May 18, it will also launch a nonstop route between Anchorage and San Diego that will take just over six hours and span nearly 2,500 miles. While the airline serves many Californian cities, San Diego's smaller size meant that residents would have previously needed to transfer in Seattle or LA on their way to Alaska.

New routes meant to serve both burgeoning tourist interest and local demand

After adding the new flights, Alaska Airlines expects to have 63 flights a day leaving from Anchorage during the summer of 2024. This is designed to meet the burgeoning traveler interest in the state as well as serve Alaskans who are separated from large American cities by geography.

"Alaskans like to get out," the airline said in announcing the new routes. "Sometimes that might mean hitting all the must-sees in New York City or taking surf lessons in SoCal. We'll make it more convenient for our guests to get there from Anchorage, as well as lots of other places."

For those who are able to make travel plans this far in advance, both the New York and San Diego flights to Anchorage are already available for booking on Alaska Airlines' website. The former starts at $400 each way for mid-week departures, while flying into the state from San Diego will cost from $300.

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