US regulators are investigating whether Binance Holdings broke securities rules in the country when launching the BNB cryptocurrency.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has turned its attention to the world’s fifth-largest cryptocurrency, reports Bloomberg. 

The token was launched in July 2017 during the height of the ‘ICO boom’. Binance is the world’s largest crypto exchange, having begun operations a few days after BNB was created.

It is the latest case to be brought against a cryptocurrency by the SEC, which believes at least one American citizen took part in the BNB ICO – hence why the case has been created.

Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao (pictured) – known as ‘CZ’ – has admitted that wording was changed on the BNB whitepaper in 2019 because the “potential for being misunderstood as a security is higher in certain regions”.

That was the year Binance’s American arm, Binance.US, was created.

Cryptocurrency shorts

Pintu, an Indonesian crypto asset trading and investment platform with four million users in the region, has raised a Series B funding round of $113 million. Intudo Ventures, Lightspeed, Northstar Group and Pantera Capital took part.

Brazilian football club São Paulo FC now accepts payment for match tickets in Bitcoin and several altcoins. It does so through a platform provided by Mexican crypto exchange Bitso, which became one of the club’s sponsors in January.

Crypto accounting platform Cryptio has raised $10 million in a Series A funding round led by Point Nine and featuring BlueYard Capital, Alven, CoinShares, Avantgarde Finance, Protocol Labs and Draper Associates. It aims to help financial institutions, corporations and crypto-native businesses create auditable records from fragmented decentralised finance.

The National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) has warned citizens and businesses that it is illegal to conduct business with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.

Canadian cryptocurrency trading platform VirgoCX has raised $8m in Series A funding led by Draper Dragon with participation from Blockdream Ventures, Cobo Ventures, Molecular Group, Sora Ventures and How Link Investment. It intends to expand globally.

Crypto prices

The overall market cap of the more than 19,700 coins is at $1.21 trillion at the time of writing (7am UK), a 5.1% decrease in the last 24 hours.

Market leader Bitcoin – the original cryptocurrency created by the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto – dropped 5% towards $29,500. BTC is 7% down in a week.

Ethereum, the second most valuable crypto coin – created as a decentralised network for smart contracts on the blockchain – fell 6% to $1,750. ETH is 11% down over the course of a week.

Binance Coin is a cryptocurrency created by popular crypto exchange Binance to assist its aim in becoming the infrastructure services provider for the entire blockchain ecosystem. Its BNB token shed 8% to $282, leaving it 12% down over seven days.

Cardano is an open source network facilitating dApps which considers itself to be an updated version of Ethereum. Its ADA token, designed to allow owners to participate in the operation of the network, fell 5% to below 59 cents and is 9% down over the course of a week.

The XRP token of Ripple, a payment settlement asset exchange and remittance system, acts as a bridge for transfers between other currencies. XRP dropped 3% to 39 cents and is 8% down on its price seven days ago.

Solana is a blockchain built to make decentralised finance accessible on a larger scale – and capable of processing 50,000 transactions per second. Its SOL token lost 6% to $39.28 and is 17% down compared with a week ago.

Meme coin DOGE was created as a satire on the hype surrounding cryptocurrencies but is now a major player in the space. DOGE lost 4% to 7.9c, leaving it 8% down in a week.

Polkadot was founded by the Swiss-based Web3 Foundation as an open-source project to develop a decentralised web. Its DOT token, which aims to securely connect blockchains, fell 6% to $9.11 and is 13% lower than its price a week ago.

Avalanche is a lightning-quick verifiable platform for institutions, enterprises and governments. Its AVAX token shed 10% to $23.84 and is 14% down in a week.

To see how the valuations of the main coins have changed in recent times – and for round-ups of recent cryptocurrency news developments – click here.

For valuations of the top 100 coins by market cap in US dollars, plus 24-hour price change, see below.