CryptoNews of the Week

Publish date: Wed, 06 Mar 2024, 09:09 AM
CryptoNews of the Week

– Bitcoin appreciated by about 10% in less than a day on March 4, reaching a new all-time high of $69,016. The previous record was $68,917, set on November 10, 2021. The market capitalisation of the leading cryptocurrency exceeded $1.3 trillion. Most of the top 10 crypto assets also saw a 10-30% increase in value over the week.

– The surge in bitcoin on March 4 is reportedly due to purchases by a certain billionaire from Qatar, who flew to Madeira on his private jet for the three-day Bitcoin Atlantis conference. Robert Rodin, CEO of Keychainx, mentioned seeing something at Madeira airport that "could change bitcoin forever." Meanwhile, BTC maximalist Max Keiser shared a video in which El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele greets the Emir of Qatar with the words "It's happening!"

This has sparked discussions about Qatar adding bitcoin to its balance sheet. The validity of such claims remains unproven, but social media is rife with speculation on the matter. It's worth noting that rumours have been circulating for several months about one or two sovereign wealth funds or investment companies from the Middle East secretly buying up bitcoin. There's also the mysterious Mr. 100BTC, who, according to rumours, has been consistently buying 100 bitcoins every day since November 2022. This individual has never emerged from the shadows, but if he does indeed exist, he would have amassed about 60,000 coins to date.

– "We have entered the era of the bitcoin gold rush. It started in January 2024 and will last approximately until November 2034," declared Michael Saylor, the founder of MicroStrategy, speaking at Bitcoin Atlantis. According to his calculations, by that time miners will have extracted 99% of all coins, marking the beginning of the "growth phase." (Currently, 93.5% have already been mined, according to BitcoinTreasuries data).

Saylor believes that at present, only 10-20% of asset managers are interested in spot BTC-ETFs. In the future, as existing barriers are removed, this figure is expected to approach 100%. "When they [the managers] can buy BTC through a bank, a platform, or a prime broker, they'll spend $50 million in an hour," he stated. The MicroStrategy founder is also confident that "the day will come when bitcoin surpasses gold and will be traded more than the S&P 500 ETFs."

– Since its network launch in 2009, bitcoin has repeatedly proven its viability. Over the years, the cryptocurrency has managed to surpass many traditional currencies. Currently, BTC has outperformed the Russian rouble in market capitalisation and occupies the fourteenth position in the overall ranking of the world's largest currencies. Its nearest competitor is the Swiss franc. (Following the news that bitcoin surpassed the rouble, the internet was flooded with jokes suggesting that Vladimir Putin is Satoshi Nakamoto).

In the overall ranking of the most capitalised assets, which includes precious metals and companies, bitcoin has taken the tenth place. It surpassed Berkshire Hathaway, the company of well-known cryptocurrency critic billionaire Warren Buffett, but fell short of Meta. The top three positions are currently held by gold, Microsoft, and Apple. Additionally, bitcoin's market capitalisation ($1.3 trillion) has reached the GDP levels of many countries. For instance, the Gross Domestic Product of Saudi Arabia is $1.108 trillion, and Indonesia's is $1.319 trillion.

Following bitcoin, Ethereum is positioned at twenty-eighth in the overall ranking of the most capitalised currencies. ETH's result was better than that of the Chilean peso but worse than the Turkish lira.

– Anthony Scaramucci, the founder of Skybridge and former White House Communications Director, asserts that US President Joe Biden has a positive impact on cryptocurrency and the financial markets at large. To support his statement, Scaramucci cited Biden's legislative proposals related to digital assets.

According to the Skybridge chief, the current president's commitment to the rule of law will expedite the establishment of regulations for the crypto industry. "While these rules may not please everyone," Scaramucci writes, "having clear guiding principles will provide a solid foundation for legal arguments in court. [Thanks to this,] we will continue to win against the Biden administration in the United States judicial system."

– Robert F. Kennedy Jr, a contender in the US presidential race, admitted last year that he bought bitcoins for his children. The politician believes that BTC is the best alternative to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) because it offers financial freedom to people.

In a recent interview with CNBC, Robert Kennedy reiterated his view of BTC as the superior currency, emphasizing that it allows Americans to transfer funds anywhere with minimal costs and complete anonymity. "Banks are trying to destroy digital currency and hinder the development of its infrastructure. However, the process of integrating cryptocurrency cannot be stopped anymore, and the repressive measures of the authorities against this instrument only increase its popularity," stated the presidential candidate.

– According to Professor of Physics Giovanni Santostasi, bitcoin could appreciate 64 times in the next 15 years, reaching $10.63 million. This forecast is based on a power-law model.

A power-law relationship is a mathematical connection between two quantities where a relative change in one quantity leads to a proportional relative change in the other, regardless of the initial values of these quantities. The relationship between one quantity and another represents a power function. This law is observable in a wide range of natural phenomena, from the frequency of earthquakes to the dynamics of stock market changes.

Santostasi stated that this model provides a clear and predictable scenario for the price change of the first cryptocurrency over long periods. However, over shorter spans, which the media primarily focuses on, the quotations behave chaotically.

According to the professor, unlike the well-known S2F (Stock-to-Flow) model by the analyst known as PlanB, the power law is logarithmic, not exponential. In other words, the price of bitcoin is not expected to rise continuously over time. According to Santostasi's calculations, the digital gold will peak at $210,000 in January 2026, then drop to $60,000, and after that, it will continue its wavy growth to $10.63 million.

– Experts at JPMorgan suggest that the upcoming bitcoin halving in April could trigger a significant drop in the price of the first cryptocurrency. The algorithmically mandated reduction of the mining reward from 6.25 BTC to 3.125 BTC will decrease mining profitability. Based on this, economists at JPMorgan, led by senior analyst Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou, predict that the price will fall to $42,000 after the halving.

"The cost of mining bitcoin empirically acts as a price floor," their report states. "Currently, the cost of mining is $26,500. After the halving, this figure will be $42,000." "This is also the level towards which we believe the price will gravitate once the post-halving euphoria subsides in April," JPMorgan notes.

The experts also considered the possibility of a 20% drop in the bitcoin network's hash rate, primarily due to the mass disconnection of low-efficiency equipment. Consequently, the capacity may concentrate among large cryptocurrency miners who have taken measures to reduce costs and maintain efficiency. "There might also be some horizontal integration through mergers and acquisitions among miners in different regions to take advantage of synergies in their business," concluded the specialists.

– Trader Gareth Soloway has identified a critical factor that could propel bitcoin's price to another historical high of $100,000. The expert pointed to a dilemma in the US Federal Reserve's monetary policy management amidst approximately 3% inflation. He emphasized that the institution's reluctance to aggressively cut rates could sustain high inflation, potentially contributing to bitcoin's upward trend. "If we see an increase in liquidity (which is bound to happen), then bitcoin will rise to $100,000 in 2024," writes Soloway. On the way to the mentioned round figure, like the JPMorgan experts, the trader does not exclude a short-term bearish correction. However, in his opinion, the upcoming halving in itself does not guarantee the digital gold's rise to the specified amount.

– Researchers from the University of Texas in the USA have discovered that over four years, cryptocurrency scammers utilizing the "pig butchering" scheme could have stolen more than $75 billion. The "pig butchering" scheme is a fraudulent attack where cybercriminals convince unsuspecting people to invest in a doomed or non-existent business. Once the victim believes and hands over their money, the scammers immediately disappear.

According to the study, from January 2020 to February 2024, such criminals duped at least 4,000 people. The illegal operations predominantly took place in Southeast Asia. The researchers found that tracked transactions amounting to $15 billion out of the reported $75 billion led to five cryptocurrency exchanges: Binance, Coinbase, OKX,, and HTX (formerly Huobi). The favorite asset among criminals was the stablecoin Tether (USDT), with more than 84% of the total transaction volume attributed to this popular coin.

Paolo Ardoino, CEO of Tether's issuer, stated that the report is rather misleading. "Every Tether transaction occurs online, so any action can be tracked, assets can be confiscated, and the criminal caught. This is why we cooperate with law enforcement agencies," he commented to Bloomberg. It's noteworthy that the United Nations (UN) has also previously stated that USDT is one of the most popular means of payment among criminal groups in Southeast Asia. Representatives of the issuer then questioned the accuracy of such data.

– In the summer of 2022, it would have been the 110th birthday of Milton Friedman, the great economist and Nobel Prize laureate, often called "the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century." Back in 1999, Friedman gave an interview in which he predicted the emergence of digital currencies. He described a system where transactions are conducted electronically, and the parties involved do not need to know each other's identities. In his forecast, Friedman highlighted the potential of digital currencies to provide unprecedented privacy and efficiency in financial transactions, marking a significant departure from traditional banking systems.

"I think that the internet is going to be one of the major forces for reducing the role of government," said the distinguished scientist at the time. "The one thing that’s missing but will soon be developed is reliable electronic cash, a method whereby on the Internet you can transfer funds from A to B without A knowing B or B knowing A."

Notice: These materials should not be deemed a recommendation for investment or guidance for working on financial markets: they are for informative purposes only. Trading on financial markets is risky and can lead to a loss of money deposited.

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