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2024 will be a transformative year for cryptocurrencies

2024 will be a transformative year for cryptocurrencies


Cryptocurrency
The days of legal gray areas in the cryptocurrency space may be drawing to a close and from now on, all market players will have to tread more carefully, writes Silvina Moschini.

Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

With three of the crypto industry’s top players dropping out of the game and the SEC approving bitcoin ETFs, we have seen the map of the crypto ecosystem being dramatically redrawn. These changes are propelling us toward a 2024 that puts rules and regulations in the spotlight.

The cryptocurrency market is, by definition, young and disruptive. It appeared discreetly in 2009 with the emergence of bitcoin and has continued to evolve in step with blockchain technology as the latter continues to develop and demonstrate its tremendous potential to improve efficiency through a process of trial and error.

At an unstoppable pace of innovation, key figures such as Do Kwon (Terra Luna), Sam Bankman-Fried (FTX) and Changpeng Zhao (Binance) rose to prominence in the industry and, in the case of the latter two, began to impose their own logic on cryptocurrency exchange platforms.

However, within the last two years, all three are gone.

The legal cases of Do Kwon and Bankman-Fried were serious enough to land them in the courtroom while Zhao’s departure from Binance made it clear, according to CoinDesk, that “Crypto itself might be borderless, but crypto companies may find it increasingly hard to operate outside of legal or geographical boundaries.”

The days of legal gray areas in the cryptocurrency space may be drawing to a close and from now on, all market players will have to tread more carefully.

This logic is increasingly being validated on the global cryptocurrency dashboard. During 2023, 42 countries discussed regulatory frameworks for cryptocurrencies and more than half of them were approved. In the case of the G20 and the world’s largest financial hubs, which includes the 27 member states of the European Union, 83% of countries now have “crypto friendly” legislation.

In Washington, meanwhile, the prospect of exchange-traded funds that track the price of bitcoin (so-called bitcoin ETFs) being approved has become a reality. One of the most important features of ETFs is that they offer investors a more accessible way to invest in bitcoin, bypassing the direct purchase of cryptocurrency (i.e., disregarding the practical challenges) but without losing track of its evolution.

The confluence of all of these factors is transforming the face of crypto and I am convinced that throughout 2024 we will continue to see this industry mature.

We have an expanded and revamped game board in which the focus is shifting away from the “star” players to the overall workings of the game.



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