Crypto Weekly: the fan-coin World Cup

STORY: From BlockFi in bankruptcy court, to why this is the fan-token World Cup, this is your roundup of the week’s big stories in virtual money.

The FTX fallout has officially claimed another victim.

Crypto lender BlockFi appeared in bankruptcy court this week.

The firm said its failure stemmed from a substantial exposure to FTX, as well as the broader downturn in crypto markets.

BlockFi is suing a holding company for former FTX chief Sam Bankman-Fried in a bid to recover some assets.

Amid the chaos, Binance chief Changpeng Zhao says don’t fight crypto, regulate it.

And he’s betting this year’s events could actually mark a healthy shakeout:

"I would expect recovery. So I think, look, 2022 was a really nasty year, the last six months, it was like, too much has happened. So I think now, actually I think now the industry is healthier. A year ago when everyone was trying to snowball in, that was not healthy.”

Binance said this week it would commit $1 billion to a recovery fund for the sector.

And the World Cup in Qatar is turning out to be a festival of fan tokens too.

Interest in the niche breed of crypto, usually linked to big teams like Barcelona, has been charged up.

Average daily trading volumes have risen to about $300 million in November - about ten times the month before.

The coins offer a chance for fans to engage with their team - but there is precious little link in value to match results.

The token for Lionel Messi’s Argentina slumped after a shock defeat to Saudi Arabia - but then dropped again after a win over Mexico.