How to get involved with crypto: The first step into blockchain industry

The crypto and blockchain industry has blossomed into a large sea of activity and development, divided into various niches.

The cryptocurrency industry has grown immensely in the years since it began. Following Bitcoin’s (BTC) launch in 2009, an entire industry has sprung up and flourished around the innovative asset and its underlying blockchain technology. People have created thousands of crypto projects, numerous different blockchains and a number of different blockchain technological specifications and variants. 

With such a deep and vast industry, how do you know where to start if you want to get involved? Start with your interests and talents.

The cryptocurrency and blockchain industry (also sometimes referred to as simply the blockchain industry or the crypto industry) has branched out into a number of specific niches in which you can participate in various capacities. The factions of these industries explained in this article are not an exhaustive list, but provide a few examples of different niches within the space.

The niches mentioned are also not particularly coined or accepted industry-wide and may be grouped differently or classified differently, depending on who you talk to or what source you investigate. Some niches can also overlap with other niches within the overall industry.

Developers

Tech-savvy folks who can code might be interested in this section of crypto and blockchain. This could mean constructing decentralized applications, helping develop blockchains, or working on technical specifications for crypto assets. Developers put together the underpinnings of the industry’s solutions and assets.

To understand blockchain, check out — How does blockchain work? Everything there is to know

Numerous areas of potential interest fall under the developer category. The decentralized finance (DeFi) niche of the crypto space became prominent in 2020, introducing a whole new demand for digital asset swapping and related infrastructures. DeFi involves solutions for functions such as crypto-based loans.

To learn more about DeFi, read — DeFi: A comprehensive guide to decentralized finance

Another potential area for tech-interested folks is that of nonfungible tokens (NFTs), which exploded in prevalence in 2021, offering a new way to authenticate and track unique items of value. The NFT subdivision of crypto needs folks with technical skills to build out solutions around existing use cases, as well as explore uncharted usages of the tech.

Interested in NFTs? Check out Cointelegraph Magazine’s Nonfungible tokens quick guide

Traders

Crypto trading is similar to stock trading in some ways. The crypto industry boasts thousands of digital assets that each fluctuate in price. Trading crypto involves buying and selling assets in search of profit. Traders are not so much concerned with what an asset does and how it works as much as they are interested in whether or not they can buy assets and sell them at higher prices, or vice versa.

Traders may be interested in the latest news, looking to buy and sell based on hype or expectations. Traders also often use price charts, gauging price patterns and price indicators. Charting price action is called technical analysis. Additionally, since Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies show asset movement publicly on their blockchains, analysts can come up with their own conclusions based on transactions and activity — known as on-chain analysis.

For more on crypto trading, read: How to trade cryptocurrencies: The ultimate beginner's guide

Trading can also overlap with the developer’s niche, as traders may want to build (or have someone else build) trading bots, customer chart indicators and other useful trading tools.

Regulation

How does crypto fit into countries’ existing laws and regulations? Should regions craft new laws and guidelines for crypto and blockchain? Regulation has been a growing area of focus as the crypto industry continues to develop for years to come.

Cryptocurrency classifications as assets have come along slowly. Bitcoin and Ethereum (ETH) are generally viewed as commodities, but the classification for the many other crypto assets in the industry has been less than clear.

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) took action against Ripple in 2020 regarding the status of XRP, an asset Ripple has been involved with in various capacities over the years. Other regulatory action also exists in crypto and blockchain, such as the ongoing scene with crypto exchanges and their regions of operation.

Crypto or blockchain-interested folks in the mainstream legal or regulatory field might find an overlap of their passions by diving into crypto regulation in some capacity. This might include working on crypto projects’ legal and compliance teams, working with policy groups and think tanks, or serving directly within governments to elicit change.

Company builders

Leaders and visionaries may have the desire to improve the crypto space by creating a project or business that solves an identified problem or need. Innovators have birthed countless projects in the space over the years, helping to grow the industry from a single asset into an entire sector.

Building a company might involve identifying something that is missing in crypto or blockchain space, then subsequently hiring and leading a team focused on providing a particular solution to that problem.

For more about crypto regulation, read: Will regulation adapt to crypto, or crypto to regulation? Experts answer

Overlap in this category exists, as company builders may also have expertise in coding, regulation, or another of the aforementioned fields.

Content creators

Social media and internet growth have opened the door for participants to share their thoughts and expertise globally. Virtually anyone can learn vast amounts of information about the crypto space through YouTube, Twitter and other methods, and then add their own expertise to the equation by providing their own content.

Related: A new era of content monetization? Blockchain tech can get you paid

Content streams can include writing about crypto and blockchain on a personal blog or for a media company, making YouTube content, Medium posts, and more. Content creation can overlap with all of the other categories mentioned in this article as well. Developers, traders and regulatory professionals can all create their own content.

Winner spends fortune in crypto on Sotheby’s diamond auction

A massive diamond just sold on Sotheby’s for a whole lot of crypto.

Art and jewelry brokerage Sotheby’s put a 101.38 carat diamond up for auction, fetching over $10 million in crypto for the rock on July 9. 

The diamond “sold for $12.3 million to an anonymous buyer last Friday at Sotheby’s Hong Kong,” MarketWatch reported on Monday. “It’s the most expensive gem ever purchased with cryptocurrency, according to Sotheby’s,” MarketWatch added.

News of the crypto-friendly diamond auction surfaced in the latter half of June, with estimates forecasting the diamond to hit prices somewhere in the ballpark of $15 million. Called “The Key 10138,” the diamond’s name reportedly pays homage to crypto industry lingo. (Private keys give access to each crypto owner's holdings.)

Anonymity and pseudonymity are not uncommon in the crypto industry. Crypto traders and social media personalities often comment on Twitter via pseudonymous profiles. Even the creator (or creators) of Bitcoin (BTC), the asset that started the whole crypto industry, remained pseudonymous under the name Satoshi Nakamoto.

It’s fitting of the crypto industry that the diamond auction would yield an anonymous buyer, paying in crypto. Results of the auction did not include which digital asset the buyer put up as payment, according to MarketWatch. Buyers had the option to wager their offers for the diamond in Bitcoin, Ethereum (ETH), or regional currencies (fiat).

Related: Bitcoin price will see breakout ‘during this week’ says trader with $38K target

On July 9, Bitcoin’s price approximately traded between $32,670 and $34,170, based on Cointelegraph’s Bitcoin price index. Ethereum traded roughly between $2,070 and $2,180 on that day. Using a price of $33,000 per Bitcoin, the buyer would have paid about 372 BTC for the diamond. If paying in ETH, the rock would have cost about 5,857 ETH, assuming a price of $2,100 for each ETH coin. The actual totals were not shared, however, so the aforementioned simply serves as a logical benchmark of potential based on price action on July 9.

Binance woes continue as Clear Junction pulls out

Another player has decided to distance itself from Binance after a slew of negative headlines around the exchange in recent weeks.

Binance has faced a number of regulatory issues in recent weeks. Payments player Clear Junction has suspended activity with Binance after similar moves from Barclays and Santander. 

“Clear Junction can confirm that it will no longer be facilitating payments related to Binance,” Clear Junction said in a statement that was tweeted out by Adam Samson of the Financial Times on Monday. “The decision has been made following the Financial Conduct Authority’s recent announcement that Binance is not permitted to undertake any regulatory activity in the UK.”

The Financial Conduct Authority, or FCA, heads up regulatory overwatch of finance in the United Kingdom. Toward the end of June 2021, the FCA ruled that Binance Markets Limited, or BML, had to stop its U.K.-based operations. Countering the FCA move, Binance noted BML as a separate outfit.

Following the FCA news, as well as other regulatory concerns pointed toward Binance, Barclays suspended customers from using payment cards for Binance activity. Subsequently, the U.K. branch of Santander decided to suspend customer interaction with the crypto exchange.

Related: Poland financial regulator issues public warning about Binance

Clear Junction followed suit, according to today’s news. The statement from Clear Junction posted by Adam Samson added:

“We have decided to suspend both GBP and EUR payments, and will no longer be facilitating deposits or withdrawals in favor of or on behalf of the crypto trading platform. Clear Junction acts in full compliance with FCA regulations and guidance in regards to handling payments of Binance.”

Crypto ads no longer allowed on TikTok

These new guidelines probably mean there won't be any more Dogecoin hyping on the platform.

TikTok announced on Friday that certain types of ads would no longer be allowed on their platform. Crypto-based promotional content was included among the now-verboten topics, according to an article from FT Adviser on July 8. 

The new guidelines on the social video posting site will specifically inhibit users from posting promotional content about financial products, regardless of the poster’s geographic location. “According to TikTok’s branded content policy, the promotion of all financial services and products is now globally prohibited,” the FT Adviser article detailed.

TikTok was a hotbed for Dogecoin (DOGE) hype in 2020, when users shared related videos in an effort to get more folks to jump on the bandwagon. Other social media sites have also hosted notable financial markets discussion in recent months, with stock discussions on Reddit becoming prominent as well.

“My interpretation of this is [TikTok] are clamping down on directly or indirectly sponsored content which leads to an affiliate link, for example to sign up to a trading platform and get free stocks,” Informed Choice’s client education head, Martin Bamford, told FT Adviser, adding:

“We see a huge amount of this branded content on TikTok, usually from poorly informed commentators, who lure in followers with promises of riches, but in reality are making their money off people signing up via affiliate links."

It is unclear as to whether TikTok’s ban applies to all financial product discussions, or just those which are promotional in nature. Google banned crypto advertisements in 2018, although it did remove part of that ban this year for some entities, pending certain requirements.

Crypto company CEO says the recent crypto boom brought increased adoption

Crypto usage in 2021 differs from the 2017 rally, according to the CEO of StormX.

Cryptocurrency has gone through a number of bull and bear cycles since the industry’s inception in 2009. While 2017 saw the crypto industry boom around initial coin offerings and a rising Bitcoin (BTC) price, 2020 and 2021 have seen the crypto space expand around decentralized finance (DeFi) and nonfungible tokens (NFTs). This time however, retail and institutional interest in crypto have ushered in greater adoption than ever before, according to one crypto company CEO. 

“Cryptocurrencies have been growing steadily in popularity over the years, but 2017 left a bitter taste in a lot of people's mouths when the market took a swift downturn,” StormX CEO Simon Yu said in comments sent to Cointelegraph. “But fast forward to 2021 and it’s clear to see times have changed.”

Yu crafted his quotes in response to recent findings from the Financial Conduct Authority, or FCA, of the United Kingdom, which revealed 2.3 million U.K.-based adults own cryptocurrency, based on a survey.

In 2017, Bitcoin’s price rallied to heights just shy of $20,000 per coin. In 2021, BTC reached prices of nearly $65,000, based on TradingView.com data.

Related: Texas crypto users will soon be able to buy and sell tokens at major supermarket chain

“The integration of cryptocurrency into aspects of daily life allows for room to grow and solidify itself as more than just an asset — it’s becoming a serious alternative financial system to fiat currency and people are starting to take notice,” Yu said, adding:

“No longer are companies popping up with arbitrary use cases, but they are instead now thriving by adding benefits to consumers' lives outside of the cryptocurrency realm. This all comes at a time, amidst a global pandemic, where people have had time to assess their finances, and now seek alternative routes to not only invest money, but also make money.”

Following the 2017 crypto bull market, the industry fell into a bear market in 2018. As far as the present market goes, Bitcoin sits in the $30,000-$40,000 range as of time of publication, down significantly from its all-time high. Time will tell whether or not the crypto market is headed for further bearishness ahead.

An NFT of the photo that inspired Dogecoin just sold for $4M

That picture of a dog staring into the camera in formal posture.. you know, the one that sparked the Doge meme? Someone just sold it for millions in Ether.

Dogecoin has seen significant attention in 2021 in tandem with its dramatic price rise. Capitalizing on this rise in attention, someone sold a non-fungible token (NFT) of the picture on which the Dogecoin (DOGE) cryptocurrency was based. 

“The original image that started it all,” read the description of the NFT, sold on very.auction. “This photo of the Shiba Inu ‘Kabosu’ was taken by her owner Atsuko Sato on February 13th, 2010,” the description explains, adding:

“After sharing it to her personal blog alongside the series of other famous images under the title ‘Taking a walk with Kabosu-chan,’ these photos went on to kickstart the Doge meme and have circulated the web ever since — none more iconic than this picture.”

The NFT was minted by a user named @kabosumama on May 31, according to the auction site. The first bid landed on June 8 from a user willing to pay 6.5 Ethereum (ETH) for the piece. Bidding escalated from there. The winning bid of 1,696.90 ETH — over $4M at time of publication — was wagered on June 11.

Related: Nifty News: Doge NFTs much wow, Paris Hilton is an NFT advisor, NFT game raises $3M

Topping above $0.70 per coin, Dogecoin’s price has risen substantially in 2021. The asset, however, has fallen notably since then, in line with the rest of the crypto market recently, trading at roughly $0.31 as of time of publication.

Elon Musk, the self-proclaimed CEO of Dogecoin, has posted a number of Dogecoin-related tweets in recent months. Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus created the asset in 2013 as a meme-based crypto parody.

These Bitcoin tweets were way ahead of their time

One Twitter user thought Bitcoin had taken off without them in 2010, while another figured BTC wouldn't go anywhere.

Bitcoin came to life in 2009. More than a decade later, the present day looks back on an enormous amount of development that has built a surrounding industry, complete with other blockchains, assets and solutions. Some folks knew about Bitcoin (BTC) in its early years, while others have jumped on the train in varying droves since then. Looking back through Twitter’s history reveals a few tweets that were far ahead of their time. 

In 2010, one Twitter user saw Bitcoin’s potential, yet expressed skepticism regarding its future. Little did they know how common the term Bitcoin would become, surfacing as the topic of numerous mainstream news interviews and reporting.

Someone else on Twitter thought they were behind the game, back in 2010! The tweet shows a post date of Dec. 1, 2010. Bitcoin’s daily price candle for that day reached a price high of around $0.23 per BTC, according to TradingView’s BraveNewCoin BTC Liquid Index. For reference, Bitcoin reached levels above $60,000 per coin in April 2021. 

Another Twitter user cashed in their Christmas present haul in 2011 for the digital asset. If they held BTC until 2021, their decision likely paid notable percentage returns, based on price action since. 

Lastly for this batch of history is a 2009 Twitter post from the now-deceased Hal Finney, who was involved in Bitcoin from the beginning. This retro tweet came on Jan. 21, 2009, shortly after Bitcoin’s Genesis block launched on Jan. 3, 2009. Since then, some assets, such as Monero (XMR), have come into existence, touting greater privacy. 

US Congressman expresses importance of crypto wallet privacy

Cynthia Lummis and Warren Davidson speak on Bitcoin's importance and personal privacy during an interview at Bitcoin 2021 in Miami.

At the bustling Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami, Congressman Warren Davidson, alongside United States Senator Cynthia Lummis, sat down to field interview questions. The interview took a turn toward privacy, with Davidson responding with comments on crypto wallets. 

“At the end of the year, if you think about it, Secretary Mnuchin was talking about banning private wallets,” Davidson said, responding to a question about the possibility of over-regulation in crypto. “That’s a horrible approach,” he added. “If we don’t protect private wallets, someone is going to try to ban them.”

As Davidson mentioned, December 2020 saw the U.S. Treasury suggest strict overwatch on self-custodied digital asset wallets, with certain specifics, such as calling for more information from users transacting with wallets held away from crypto exchanges.

“I wish the country would take the threat to privacy as seriously as they take the threat to the second amendment,” he said. The second amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives citizens gun ownership rights.

Taking her turn at a response, Lummis noted the importance of teaching U.S. government folks on Bitcoin. “We’re trying to create a financial innovation caucus so we can use it to educate members of the U.S. Senate and their staffs about Bitcoin, its advantages, and why it is just such a fabulous asset to dovetail with the U.S. dollar,” she said. “It can be the underlying network, worldwide, to keep the dollar the global reserve currency, but still allow people to transact in a very freedom-loving way,” she said, adding:

“Whether you’re in Venezuela, where the inflation is outrageous and you’re trying to get your wealth out of the country, you can get it out through Bitcoin. And, the United States, if we get to the point where we’re experiencing the kind of inflation we’ve begun to see this year, we may want that alternative as well.”

In recent years, Venezuela has seen soaring levels of inflation amid a broad economic decline that was partially tied to the oil-price collapse of 2014.

The Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami thus far has hosted significant action in terms of speakers and discussions. The event will continue for a second day on Saturday. 

Korean Solana expansion gets $20 million boost

ROK Capital and the Solana Foundation have formed the Solana Eco Fund, aiming to spark a fire of Solana blockchain-based growth in Korea.

Solana-related news has surfed a number of headlines in recent months. The blockchain now appears headed for major strides in Korea, with significant funding for its surrounding ecosystem. 

"As one of the largest crypto markets globally, Korea has an extraordinarily high adoption rate of cryptocurrencies," a representative from Korean firm ROK Capital told Cointelegraph. "By expanding the Solana ecosystem in Korea, we hope to grow the awareness and adoption of decentralized applications on the Solana ecosystem as well as encourage and incubate local teams to build on Solana."

A new $20 million Solana Eco Fund — constructed by ROK Capital and the Solana Foundation — is now available to help out the world of solutions based around the Solana blockchain, said a Thursday public statement provided to Cointelegraph. Several projects have already received funding, including Synthetify and Symmetry.

“In addition to injecting capital, this new fund will provide tailored services for projects to successfully accelerate in Korea,” Brain Kang, a general partner at ROK Capital, said.

“By partnering with Solana, the firm hopes to bootstrap a range of Solana-focused infrastructure projects, including those related to Web3, Defi, and NFTs,” the statement said of ROK Capital. “The focus will be on accelerating Solana’s expansion into the Korean market,” the statement added, subsequently noting additional involvement from DeSpread and FactBlock.

Earlier this morning brought news of another Solana ecosystem-spurring effort, labeled the Solverse Accelerator. The initiative, which is supported by at least 21 companies, will provide mentorship and other resources in support of projects building on the Solana network. Wednesday also saw the opening of a Solana-based market for nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, called Metaplex.

Solana’s native coin, SOL, sits in 16th position on CoinMarketCap’s rankings list at a price of $39.01 per coin at the time of publication, with a market cap of approximately $10.6 billion.

Funding surpasses $2 million for this charity DAO

Multiple parties added capital to Endaoment, which aims to turn its ecosystem into a decentralized autonomous organization for donations — charity for the people.

Opportunities for cryptocurrency usage have risen over the years as digital assets have become more well known. One operation, called Endaoment, is aiming to put charitable giving in the hands of the people and recently secured over $2 million to further its endeavor. 

“Endaoment facilitates tax-deductible giving of cryptocurrencies via its Donor-Advised Funds, a kind of charitable financial account, where donors give assets to charity, and later recommend distributions to non-profit organizations,” said a Wednesday public statement provided to Cointelegraph. “Endaoment also offers Community Funds, a pooled giving opportunity where grants are made around specific issue areas and identified by the community.” Endaoment hosts compatibility for a large number of digital assets.

This is not the first instance crypto-based donations have surfaced as a topic in the industry. The Giving Block has taken a number of strides to facilitate donations via crypto assets.

Endaoment is currently overseen and developed by a community foundation, although the operation aims to eventually function as a decentralized autonomous organization, or DAO, — essentially a system run by the public in a democratic fashion in line with programmed rules and guidelines. Endaoment’s donor fund systems run on Ethereum’s blockchain, the statement also noted.

A number of entities donated and invested a total $2.5 million into Endaoment as part of a seed funding round, the statement included. The capital will assist in moving toward the DAO set up.

“This capital enables us to launch the DAO that is our namesake; the first DAO to power an on-chain philanthropic institution without compromising on regulatory compliance,” Robbie Heeger, Endaoment’s CEO and president, said in the public statement.

Polkadot ETP hits Swedish stock market

The mainstream market now has a new way of buying and selling the crypto asset Polkadot — via an exchange-traded product.

The mainstream financial world has taken notable strides to incorporate various crypto assets. A new exchange-traded product (ETP) for Polkadot (DOT) recently surfaced on a mainstream exchange in Sweden. 

The Nordic Growth Market now hosts buying and selling for the DOT ETP, officially labeled as the “VALOUR POLKADOT (DOT) SEK,” according to a public statement provided to Cointelegraph. The ETP is a product of Valour, a company that produces digital asset-based ETPs. The product went live on the exchange on Monday. A company called DeFi Technologies is Valour’s parent company.

“This is a particularly exciting time for the Polkadot protocol with the upcoming launch of its parachain functionality, providing increased scalability and finalizing its core build,” Diana Biggs, Valour’s CEO, said, as quoted in the public statement. “Our launch of Valour DOT SEK is a direct response to increased demand from both retail and institutional investors for access to further innovative blockchain protocols via our ETPs.”

An equities market based in Sweden holding regulatory approval in the country, the Nordic Growth Market, also shortened to NGM, serves participants from multiple countries.

Over the years, mainstream entities have paved more traditional roadways for cryptocurrency exposure, such as the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s Bitcoin and Ethereum futures, Grayscale’s crypto-based products, and Canadian Bitcoin exchange-traded funds.

Using traditional stock market measures, participants can buy and sell the DOT ETP, which is backed by the crypto asset DOT. “For each exchange traded product of Valour that is bought and sold on the stock exchange, Valour purchases or sells the equivalent amount of the underlying digital assets, meaning the products are fully backed at all times,” the statement said of Valour’s ETPs in general.

Privacy blockchain Dusk establishes $5 million grant program

Folks looking to build solutions involving Dusk’s privacy-focused blockchain can apply for support, as the company has $5 million to dish out.

The crypto space has grown significantly in recent years, with various projects harnessing different blockchains for their solutions. Dusk Network, a blockchain focused on privacy, now offers projects the opportunity to apply for funding for Dusk-related endeavors. 

“The Dusk Grants Program seeks to engage (independent) projects, developers, researchers, academics, or community organizers that want to accelerate the growth and accessibility of the Dusk Network blockchain platform,” Dusk said in a public statement on Tuesday. “The program is open to anyone and everyone, though applications need to be relevant to Dusk Network.”

Originally unveiled back in April, the grant initiative touts $5 million in total, available for allocation to various projects. Interested parties must apply for grant funds, with applications running through a six-step process, starting with an inquiry form, and ending with onboarding, according to the public statement.

The statement listed a number of particular project niches in which Dusk is interested in terms of allocating grant funds, including mainstream adoption-driving projects.

Since the launch of Bitcoin’s blockchain in 2009, various other blockchains have emerged, such as Ethereum, with which projects can build solutions. Dusk aims to offer a privacy-focused blockchain, which projects can harness for building.

Dusk’s team currently oversees the grant endeavor, including approvals, although Dusk plans on forming a specific unit for grant overwatch. “In the coming year, a newly instantiated Governance Council consisting of core team members and reputable industry developers will start to govern the grant program,” the statement said. “This dedicated team of 7 people will also govern the network’s Community Development Fund (CDF), and is tasked with securing the long-term future of Dusk Network,” the statement added. “Further down the line, the team aspires to govern the network directly on-chain through a decentralised governance procedure.”

According to the statement, Dusk has not yet openly fired up its testnet. Cointelegraph reached out to Dusk Network, but did not receive a response in time for initial publication.

Stablecoin company earns record-level investment sum for a crypto outfit

Circle now hodls the record for receiving the biggest investment round taken in by a crypto entity.

Crypto companies have been on the rise in tandem with the industry’s growth in recent years. A report from Forbes recently detailed a number of large investments into blockchain and digital asset entities, with one $440 million play rising to the forefront. 

“Circle, creator of the second-largest stablecoin, USDC, has just raised $440 million in private investment from an array of private equity, institutional and strategic investors,” Forbes wrote on Friday. Circle inked the deal on Friday, capturing investment from Fidelity Management and Research company, FTX, and others.

The article recapped the details around the top-12 most sizable monetary contributions crypto outfits have received over the years, in order of size, with Circle summiting the list.

Holding second place — crypto mining solution provider Bitmain, touting a 2018 investment round of $422 million, according to Forbes. Bitmain actually takes up two spots on the list, having received another investment in 2018, to the tune of $292.7 million.

BlockFi holds third place with a $350 million VC round from 2021. Dapper Labs and Blockchain.com come in fourth and fifth, having received $305 million and $300 million respectively.

This year has been a good one so far for crypto companies raisi funds. “Of the 12 largest crypto-investments in history, five have been in 2021,” Forbes detailed.

The overall crypto space has seen notable exuberance in 2021, with Bitcoin’s price reaching record highs as well as standout price performances from other digital assets.

Coinbase isalso stands on Forbes’ list, seeing $300 million worth of capital invested in its brand in 2018. That funding included participation from Andreessen Horowitz and Polychain Capital, among others. Coinbase went public on the Nasdaq in April 2021 by way of a direct listing.

Bitcoin likely won’t entirely replace current financial system, Coin Center director says

Bitcoin may not make the current monetary and financial system extinct, although its usage will likely vary depending on one’s location.

Bitcoin may not mean an end to traditional currency and banking, according to Peter Van Valkenburgh, research director at Coin Center. 

“I think there’s folks in the Bitcoin community who probably make too many noises about how Bitcoin is going to dominate all economic systems and nobody will be using dollars anymore, and nobody will be using banks anymore, and I think that’s actually a little foolhardy,” Van Valkenburgh said in a Friday interview with the Washington Journal on C-Span.

“The fact of the matter is that there’s going to be times when a Bitcoin transaction is what you want. Definitely if you are in an oppressive state like Nigeria or Belarus you might find it more useful to use Bitcoin. In the U.S., we have a pretty stable banking system. We have the rule of law, we have a pretty well-functioning government.”

The way in which Bitcoin is used can depend on users’ geographic location. In some countries, Bitcoin (BTC) is seen as more of a speculative asset, used for trading and investing.

In other regions, Bitcoin can serve as a vehicle of greater freedom, providing users more flexibility and faster payments, as well as an avenue out of inflationary troubles when compared to traditional finance and currency.

“Generally speaking, here in the U.S., you’ll probably still use credit cards and Venmo and things like that, but maybe you’ll want to buy some Bitcoin because it can be a way to balance your investment portfolio against the threat of inflation,” Van Valkenburgh said, subsequently referring to similarity to gold in terms of limited supply.

“So maybe, you know, as part of a balanced portfolio that includes other safer investments, you might have a little bit of Bitcoin to hedge against inflation,” he noted.

Sweden moving forward in e-krona CBDC trials

Sweden will trial its CBDC with a live banking participant. The experimentation will involve participation between Riksbank and Handelsbanken, a retail bank chain based in Sweden.

Sweden has made a number of strides toward its own central bank digital currency, or CBDC, called the e-krona. The Sveriges Riksbank, the country’s central bank, now looks to experiment with the asset using a non-simulated party. 

As reported by Reuters, Riksbank detailed on Friday via a statement: “The e-krona pilot is therefore moving on from only having simulated participants to cooperation with external participants in the test environment.” The experimentation will involve participation between Riksbank and Handelsbanken, a retail bank chain based in Sweden.

In January, Riksbank elaborated that its e-krona proof-of-concept harnesses Corda, a distributed ledger technology, or DLT, solution from R3. Sweden has been on the CBDC path for over a year. April brought news that the country had finished the beginning portion of its CBDC pilot.

The Riksbank statement reported on by Reuters also included Handelsbanken noting: “For Handelsbanken, the project means the opportunity to participate in what may be among the first digital central bank-issued money in the world to be available to the public.”

CBDCs were a hot topic in 2020, with countries continuing their pursuits in 2021. China has largely led the charge in terms of CBDC ambition, although the Bahamas burst on the scene last fall with the first CBDC launch, calling its currency the Sand Dollar. Just recently, Lael Brainard, the governor of the Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States, expressed the importance of a CBDC in terms of the country’s position as the world’s reserve currency.

Bitcoin’s usefulness is on a whole other level, depending on where you live

One Nigerian explains the benefits of Bitcoin from an alternate angle.

A versatile asset, Bitcoin can wear multiple hats, including its function as a currency. One Nigerian on Twitter recently detailed how Bitcoin has helped him overcome a slew of monetary difficulties. 

“Growing up in Nigeria, I see #Bitcoin with a different lens than you do if you grew up in the US for example,” said the CEO of Bitnob, Bernard Parah, in a tweet on Thursday. His tweet was part of a thread detailing a bevvy of monetary difficulties, pointing toward Bitcoin as a solution.

“You cannot spend more than $100 on international sites using your card - You can't spend your own money, you can't buy that PS5 if you wanted to because of monetary controls,” Parah explained as one difficulty.

“You got lucky to go abroad, find some work and want to send money home to mom but have to pay ridiculous fees to do that. If it's an emergency, those funds might not get there on time,” he noted as another example.

Money in the world can be siloed, especially when it comes to crossing borders. Sending bank wires requires transacting during banking hours, while other forms of money transfer take time to settle on the backend and may require personal information in the process. Bitcoin, on the other hand, works pseudonymously, without regard for borders or hours of operation.

Inflation can also be a problem in some countries, so storing native currency can be an issue, which Parah also mentioned in one of the tweets. Parah also pointed toward the control financial institutions have if money is stored with them. “Having your bank accounts blocked because you took part in or donated to a protest,” he posted as a difficulty suffered by younger folks. “If they own the money, they own you.”

After noting the internet’s improvements on the world, as well as the existence of web-based currency, he added: “This allows us to be global citizens from day 1, to trade with the world, to enjoy the prosperity being shared on the internet.” He also noted: “While you see magic internet money, what we see is a shot at freedom, a shot at prosperity and we don't plan to stop going for this.” Parah covered a number of other points in his tweet thread.

Will Woo doesn’t think Bitcoin’s overall upward run has ended

Popular Bitcoin analyst Willy Woo noted a few signs and symptoms indicating the BTC bull run still has some juice left.

Bitcoin’s price fell significantly this week as the $30,000 price level waved hello to the frantically falling asset. Willy Woo, a popular Bitcoin (BTC) analyst, however, thinks the curtain call for Bitcoin’s overall upward rally has not occurred yet. 

During an interview with podcaster Peter McCormack, posted on the What Bitcoin Did YouTube channel on May 21, Woo talked about a number of points, including Bitcoin’s recent network and price activity, and its current state. Woo noted that many macro indicators point toward price positivity for Bitcoin. “There’s an immense amount of activity on the network between investors compared to the valuation,” Woo said, referring to data from Bitcoin’s NVT ratio, which shows blockchain network activity in relation to market cap.

“We haven’t seen any kind of mania,” Woo continued. “We dumped down from a level which was highly organic — no speculative premium,” he said. “The 2017 top, for example, we were I think 3.8% higher than the organic evaluation.”

“This is just a middle of the bull market derivatives unwind,” Woo said of the current state of Bitcoin. Bitcoin reached around $65,000 in April, based on TradingView data. Subsequently, the asset declined down below $50,000 for a period, recovered above the level for a time, reaching nearly $60,000 before beginning its descent down to the $30,000 range.

“I think it’ll take a bit of time to recover, just from the sheer amount of coins that we dumped out,” Woo said. “I think ultimately, if you look at the network health, this is a good thing,” he said, seemingly referring to the overall situation.

McCormack asked Woo straight: “So it’s not the end of the bull market?” To which Woo responded: “No, not at all.”

Looking at his chart, Woo said price targets and details depend on the days ahead, although he expects Bitcoin’s price to hit levels higher than $100,000 per coin. Woo and McCormack also chatted about a number of other points during the interview.

Crypto interest remains on the rise, according to this industry CEO

The CEO of Unstoppable Domains notes data showing increased crypto interest despite the recent crypto market price drops.

Crypto asset prices fell drastically this past week. The CEO and co-founder of Unstoppable Domains, Matthew Gould, said interest in the industry, however, still remains positive. 

"Over the past week, crypto markets have experienced significant volatility sparking concern among the blockchain community and investors at large,” Gould said in a comment sent to Cointelegraph. On Wednesday, Bitcoin plunged down near the $30,000 price point — a dramatic move considering the asset traded near $60,000 earlier in May, based on TradingView data.

“However, blockchain domain names are being registered at unprecedented speeds with no signs of slowing down,” Gould said, adding:

"Domain names registered on the Ethereum blockchain have grown by nearly 25,000 over the past week to 817,000 on Unstoppable Domains. The current registration rate is on pace for >500% YoY growth, even during this past week’s selloff. Growth of usage of blockchain apps continues even in the face of declines in crypto speculation, showing that when you look at the space as a whole, optimism is ever-present."

Unstoppable Domains gives folks the opportunity to acquire and control a given domain name with the .crypto extension, storable via a nonfungible token, or NFT. This differs from current standard centralized methods of website ownership, which domain providers control.

Last week yielded headlines around Bitcoin mining energy consumption, stemming from Tesla’s decision to stop taking Bitcoin as a form of payment, based on related energy concerns. The move, seemingly temporary, has seen pushback from folks in the days since.

Crypto industry brass explains harnessing renewable energy could help BTC miners

Bitcoin mining via renewable energy is already prominent, one CEO explains.

The energy consumed by mining — the process that keeps Bitcoin’s blockchain running — has been an increasingly popular topic of discussion in recent weeks.

On Friday, CNBC posted an interview with SUKU CEO Yonathan Lapchik, during which he explained the Bitcoin mining scene as it relates to renewable energy. The interviewer noted Lapchik previously claimed that 75% of Bitcoin mining comes from renewable energy.

“We think that 75% is an actual figure,” Lapchik told CNBC, “The miners are truly incentivized to use renewable energy." Turning his thoughts to electric car-maker Tesla, which recently announced it would no longer accept Bitcoin for purchases due to environmental concerns, Lapchik said “It’s surprising that Elon didn’t consider that before getting into the space, before accepting Bitcoin as a payment mechanism for Tesla.”

Tesla opened its doors to payments via Bitcoin by United States clientele back in March. The move went public following the car company’s purchase of $1.5 billion worth of BTC, announced in February.

Musk, however, recently stated disapproval of the fossil fuel energy Bitcoin mining calls on, via a Tweet on Wednesday. He also discontinued payments to Tesla in BTC, albeit seemingly a temporary move until Bitcoin mining reaches satisfactory energy usage levels.

“Really the data has been there forever,” Lapchik said of the 75% number. “We’ve been proving over and over and over that that’s a real case for miners in the Bitcoin network.”

Square not revisiting its Bitcoin allocation, but still interested in the asset

Square appears content with its Bitcoin holdings for now.

Over the course of 2020 and 2021, Square bought over $200 million worth of Bitcoin. At present, the payments company does not anticipate picking up more of the asset, according to its chief financial officer, Amrita Ahuja. 

In an interview with Financial News, reported on Friday, Ahuja said: “We don’t have any plans at this point to make further purchases.” She added: “There’s no plans at this point to re-evaluate where we are from a treasury standpoint."

Cointelegraph reached out to Square for additional comments, but did not receive a response in time for publication. 

In October 2020, Square announced buying $50 million worth of Bitcoin (BTC), which equated to 4,709 BTC, given the asset’s prices back then. In February 2021, the company announced picking up $170 million worth of additional Bitcoin, which paid for roughly 3,318 coins.

May has hosted sideways and downward price action from Bitcoin, although Square has still seen some significant profit from its BTC holdings. “In Square’s most recent quarterly earnings, published on 6 May, the company said it had lost $20m on its bitcoin investment despite its fair value rising to $472m based on market prices,” Financial News detailed.

Square’s Bitcoin involvement does not stop at its purchasing of the asset, however. The company’s Cash App facilitates free Bitcoin transactions, unveiled in March, as per Square’s May 6 earnings document. Square’s Cash App also hosts Bitcoin trading.

"Lots of other opportunities for [Square] to learn with bitcoin” exist, Ahuja told Financial News following her comments on the company’s stance on its Bitcoin holdings.

She also said in the interview:

“We’re always evaluating and as ever, I think we’d be customer-led [...] As we see the evolution of the bitcoin product or crypto products in general, I think we’ll make further assessments at that point.”

Square’s CEO, Jack Dorsey, has spoken positively of Bitcoin on a number of occasions.

Crypto currently is comparable to the early days of cell phones, Coinbase President says

Crypto needs to be more user-friendly, according to Emilie Choi.

In terms of adoption, products and services, the crypto industry has come a long way since Bitcoin’s launch in 2009. Emilie Choi, Coinbase’s president and chief operating officer, however, still said crypto usage needs to be easier. 

“It’s about, you know, how do we create the most user-friendly experiences for folks,” Choi told Bloomberg in a May 13 interview when asked about any notable uncertainties regarding crypto’s future. She added:

“In many ways, I always kind of take the analogy of like the old mobile phones, right, that had these clunky clunky interfaces. We’re in kind of that phase of crypto, so we have to make it more usable. We have to make it more accessible. We have to have more regulatory certainty for certain folks to get off the sidelines and participate.”

A vast number of solutions exist for people to become involved in the crypto space — from trading apps, to payment facilitators such as BitPay, to asset availability on PayPal. Interacting with crypto assets directly, however, can be a cumbersome task for new folks, depending on how they approach it. Spending crypto assets also remains potentially convoluted when it comes to considering the possible tax implications involved in each transaction.

Choi’s comment brings to mind the days of small-screened flip phones touting little or no internet usability compared to the smart phones of today. Such old-school phones often required texting via a keypad with both numbers and letters. This, contrasting current smart phones with massive screens, internet access and various keyboard functionalities.

“We are seeing so much participation now, we feel like there’s just a great opportunity ahead of us,” Choi added of crypto. Over the past year or so, the crypto industry has gained a growing amount of mainstream interest. Such interest has come in line with significant upside price action from Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

People seem to have forgotten that Dogecoin fans have always been lit

DOGE excitement is not a new thing.

Dogecoin fanfare has exploded during the first half of 2021, often in tandem with Elon Musk’s tweets mentioning the asset. The coin has seen notable hype, evidenced by its significant upward price surge in 2021, although this is hardly the first bout of excitement over Dogecoin (DOGE). 

At the beginning of 2014, a video surfaced titled “Dogecoin-Powered Airport Invasion Party! (2013),” posted on a YouTube channel by the name of Gary Lachance. “Tom and Gary's Decentralized Dance Party recently invaded Vancouver International Airport, sharing the madness of the DDP with hundreds of overjoyed air travelers,” the video’s description says.

The video shows a large number of people, some costumed in yellow, dancing around to the sound of music. Some of the participants have headset microphones to communicate with the masses.

DDP stands for "decentralized dance party," according to ABC’s prior coverage of that type of event. The Gary Lachance YouTube channel also posted the ABC reporting segment in 2013. Other DDP events also occurred, although they did not appear to be DOGE-themed, based on the coverage.

A separate video, posted by Corndogulous on YouTube, shows another 2014 party devoted to DOGE, which attracted all types of folks interested in the asset for various reasons. 

DOGE tallied an astronomical price increase in 2021, going from less than a penny per coin all the way up past $0.70, based on CoinMarketCap price numbers.

Other retro DOGE-related videos also exist on YouTube, including a music video from 2014, titled “D is for Dogecoin” and posted by YouTube channel ZimoNitrome. A tune from the channel Dunderpatrullen called “To The Moon” plays against the backdrop of a cartoon dog riding a rocket.

DOGE came into existence in 2013 and carries an eventful past. Despite the price rise as of late, the asset comes with significant inflation, as miners add millions of DOGE to the market on a daily basis. The asset also does not have a maximum supply. There is currently more than 129 billion DOGE in circulation, according to CoinMarketCap. Bitcoin (BTC), on the other hand, has a maximum supply of 21 million coins, making it a scarce asset by comparison.

Bridgewater Associates CFO heads to Bitcoin-focused firm

The New York Digital Investment Group, or NYDIG, tapped Jon Dalby as its new CFO.

Departing his position as the chief financial officer of Bridgewater Associates, John Dalby will assume the post of chief financial officer for Bitcoin-focused tech and finance company NYDIG.

"The NYDIG team and I are extremely excited to welcome John,” NYDIG CEO and co-founder Robert Gutmann said in a public statement released on Friday. He added:

“His kindness, curiosity, and humility, combined with his deep financial services experience, are a perfect match for NYDIG as we continue to build institutional Bitcoin solutions. Working on Bitcoin is increasingly what many of the best and brightest employees seek – including industry leaders like John – and NYDIG is uniquely positioned to offer them the platform, resources, and culture to shine, in pursuit of our collective mission to bring Bitcoin safely to everyone.”

Founded in 1975 by famous investor Ray Dalio, Bridgewater Associates operates as a mainstream powerhouse investment management entity. NYDIG, a younger company focused on Bitcoin, has made a number of headlines this year, including garnering funding to the tune of $100 million.

Dalby formerly held high positions at UBS and D.E. Shaw Renewables Investments, giving him vast expertise, based on the public statement. "The growth of NYDIG has been incredible,” Dalby said in the statement. “Every day, more industries come to understand Bitcoin's potential and more clients seek ways to safely access it,” he added. Further comments in the statement from the new NYDIG chief financial officer showed his positivity toward Bitcoin’s potential.

6 Crypto-centric songs you may not have heard

Crypto has made for a genre-defying trove of lyrical content over the years. Here are some key examples of the industry’s musical creativity.

While the cryptocurrency industry is mostly centered around technology and data, the people who inhabit our sector are not without their creativity. This is seen not only in the various solutions and inventions they create, but also in their artistic (and often humorous) works.

Over the years, folks of the crypto space have crafted songs based on distributed technology, as well as its jokes and humor. Some of these songs are parodies of mainstream hits, substituted with crypto lyrics, while others are originals that are unique to the digital asset industry. 

Here are several crypto-centric songs that are worth a listen.

“Bitcoin pls go to moon”

A classic in the crypto space, “Bitcoin pls go to moon” came after Bitcoin (BTC) had dropped significantly in price following its 2017 bull run. The YouTube channel 1thousandx posted this lyrical work on Nov. 6, 2018. The song urges Bitcoin to rise in price and “stop going sideways now.” At the time of the song, Bitcoin traded more than $10,000 lower than its then-all-time price high near $20,000, and had been consolidating in that range for a notable period of time, according to TradingView data. The song included sentiments from crypto industry personalities Michael Novogratz and Tone Vays.

“Banksters Paradise (A Bitcoin Song)”

A song posted by YouTube channel Renegade Investor, “Banksters Paradise (A Bitcoin Song)” is a parody of “Gangsta’s Paradise” by Coolio. The parody details the world as a playground for banksters amid an atmosphere of money printing and inflation, pointing toward Bitcoin as a solution.

“BLOCKCHAINIAN RHAPSODY”

Queen’s song “Bohemian Rhapsody” is one of the world’s more popular lyrical works. A YouTube channel known as Crypto Karaoke made a crypto-centered parody of the tune. “Bull markets come, bull markets go, HODL high, HODL low,” the song’s lyrics include — differing from the line from the original song: “Easy come, easy go, little high, little low.” The revamped line pays tribute to HODL, a popular term in the crypto space. Although the term has no set definition, it is usually used to mean holding on to assets regardless of market fluctuations.

“Old Town Road (Bitcoin Version)”

YouTuber Lil Bubble has carved out a niche for himself in doing crypto song parodies. The creator has made numerous song parodies based on the crypto industry. The music videos often include a person dancing in a space suit — a reference to the common industry imagery of assets going “to the moon.”

The YouTuber’s most popular song in terms of views on the social media platform is his rendition of “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X. The parody comedically touches on the struggles of investing and holding assets in the crypto space through the low periods.

“HODL GANG”

Musical artist Chris Record has put out a lot of different content on his YouTube channel, Chris Record TV, including some musical works. Although not directly focused on crypto, the channel has posted a few musical crypto creations. One such video turns Lil Pump’s song “Gucci Gang” into a Bitcoin rap remix titled “HODL GANG.” Published in December 2017, near the height of the previous crypto bull market, the song talks about various aspects of crypto investing, crypto’s history, and so forth.

“BITCONNECT EDM REMIX”

Now defunct, Bitconnect was a crypto scam prevalent during the 2017 crypto bull run. Bitconnect ran an event at which Carlos Matos, one of the project’s investors, gave a speech that started off with exuberant singing, yelling, and generally hilarious showmanship. The speech subsequently became meme-worthy content. Through his YouTube channel, musical artist Dylan Locke made an electronic dance music, or EDM, song based on Matos’ speech.

These are just a few examples of the industry’s creative musical and comedic talent. As crypto continues to gain mainstream attention, we can only hope that dulcet tones continue to proliferate for years to come.

Crypto.com unveils EVM blockchain functionality and related fund

The new functionality will help smart contracts and applications from other blockchains transition over to the Crypto.org ecosystem.

In the coming months, Crypto.com’s blockchain will let projects built on Ethereum transfer over to its ecosystem via Ethereum Virtual Machine, or EVM, compatibility. The company also unveiled a related fund to bolster interested projects.

According to a Friday public statement from the company provided to Cointelegraph, the EVM feature goes live on the Crypto.org blockchain on July 14 of this year. “EVM support will be implemented as a side-chain,” the statement noted.

Crypto.com is currently a notable entity in the crypto space, with its CRO asset ranked amid the top 50 crypto assets by market cap on CoinMarketCap as of time of publication. Crypto.com went live with its Crypto.org blockchain mainnet in March 2021.

By bringing EVM to Crypto.org Chain, the company hopes to give its blockchain greater versatility within the larger crypto ecosystem. “EVM support will allow for simple porting of apps from other chains, driving exponential ecosystem growth for Crypto.org, a fully decentralized, open-source, public chain with high speed and extremely low fees,” Crypto.com’s CEO and co-founder, Kris Marszalek, said in the public statement.

In addition to publicizing the upcoming EVM functionality, a new source of funding for industry startups was also unveiled, the statement detailed. Called the CRO EVM Fund, it will be aimed at early-stage projects developing on the Crypto.org blockchain. The fund looks to give 100 projects significant capital to help with their endeavors, and is headed up by Particle B — a startup accelerator. Startups can receive a maximum of $1 million from the fund.

“EVM support makes it super easy to launch,” Particle B’s founder, Gary Or, said in the statement, adding:

“Projects can count on us for much more than the initial funding. As a founder and CTO, I have a deep understanding of the ongoing support startups need. We will collaborate closely with our portfolio companies as we connect and build the Crypto.org Chain ecosystem together.”

A $1 billion crypto fund could be on its way from Andreessen Horowitz

The VC firm is looking to raise a considerable sum to put towards crypto investments.

Building on its previous crypto involvement, VC firm Andreessen Horowitz is now reportedly gathering thunder for another fund, according to an article from the Financial Times, or FT.

“The new fund, Andreessen’s third that is focused on cryptocurrency investments, is aiming to raise between $800m and $1bn from investors, according to four people with knowledge of the process,” FT wrote on Friday.

A Venture Capital, or VC, firm, Andreessen Horowitz also operates under the name a16z. The entity is active in the crypto and blockchain sector, and has invested in a number of projects. It plans to aim the new fund’s capital toward crypto industry projects and digital assets, FT reported.

The VC player was also a heavy investor in Coinbase, which recently went public on April 14. Andreessen Horowitz has offloaded about $120 million of its Coinbase stock, although it held roughly $11 billion in the asset at the time of its listing, according to regulatory filings cited by FT.  

In April 2020, headlines surfaced regarding the entity’s pursuit of $450 million for its second crypto-specific fund. The firm ended up securing $515 million

The crypto space overall has seen considerable capital inflows over the past year, evident in the industry's $2 trillion asset market cap valuation, which it reached in April 2021.

Impact of crypto still years out, T. Rowe Price’s head says

Crypto could still be in its infancy, according to one mainstream company's CEO.

Although the crypto space has been around for more than a decade, William Stromberg, CEO of mainstream investment management outfit T. Rowe Price, thinks the asset class is still finding its sea legs. 

"It's early days,” Stromberg told the Baltimore Business Journal in an interview when asked if “T. Rowe Price will ever start investing in cryptocurrencies.”

“We have some research going on around it,” the CEO added. “Some companies, just really a handful, have tried to put together products where one can buy and own crypto-related currencies.”

So far, a crypto-free strategy is working for Stromberg. Quarter one of this year was a great one for T. Rowe Price. The firm notched $1.52 trillion in assets under management, and saw its profits rise by over 100%, the Baltimore Business Journal article detailed. 

A number of avenues exist for investing directly in cryptocurrencies. A growing number of avenues also exist for exposure to crypto assets via traditional financial products as well, although the opportunities are not as diverse, as opposed to interacting directly with specific cryptocurrencies.

The Chicago Mercantile Exchange, or CME, offers Bitcoin (BTC) futures and options trading, as well as Ethereum (ETH) futures, for example. Among other crypto investment gateways, Grayscale also offers a variety of mainstream crypto investment vehicles.

“It really truly is early, early days here so I would expect this to move at a good pace but take years to really unfold," Stromberg added in his response to the Baltimore Business Journal’s question on crypto.

Stromberg’s crypto comments came after the CEO discussed the overall financial landscape of American markets, for which he sees a positive future. "We are very bullish on the economy and the growth of the economy as it reopens and that reopening broadens," he told the Baltimore Business Journal.

Although in general crypto is not technically tied to any specific region or government, its price action can arguably be influenced by certain events, based on the price crash Bitcoin suffered during March 2020 around COVID-19 concerns, however some debate exists on the subject.

England’s central bank moves ahead with CBDC with 7 job postings

The Bank of England's CBDC-related job listings range from solution architect to senior manager.

The United Kingdom’s central bank, the Bank of England, or BoE, still maintains that it is unsure on a path forward regarding a central bank digital currency, although the entity is looking to hire at least seven CBDC-related job positions. 

The job listings recently surfaced on the BoE’s job posting website. One such position searches for a “Stakeholder Analyst - Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).”

As per the site, the bank is also searching for a project analyst, a solution architect, a technology analyst, a senior manager, and a senior enterprise architect — all CBDC-related, as well as a senior CBDC policy analyst. The site posted the listings on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Like many other central banks, the Bank of England is actively exploring whether it should develop and issue a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC),” said the page for the stakeholder analyst job listing. “No decision has yet been taken on whether or not a CBDC is needed in the UK, but it is an important topic for the Bank to understand.”

The posting mentioned a number of specifics on the job, as well as the BoE’s focus in terms of looking into a CBDC.

Reporting earlier this month showed Her Majesty’s Treasury, or HMT, and the BoE jointly working on CBDC-related research, unveiling a CBDC task force. CBDCs have been a hot topic over the past year or so, with central banks acting at varied speeds.

PlanB speculates that BTC price fall doesn’t mean the end

Is Bitcoin’s bull run over? This crypto analyst doesn't think so.

Bitcoin’s (BTC) price has declined over the past day or so, falling from highs above $60,000 to below $50,000. That, however, does not necessarily mean the asset’s bull run is over, according to a well-known crypto analyst, PlanB

“Nothing goes up in a straight line,” PlanB said in a Tweet on Friday.

“#Bitcoin has gone up 6 months in a row, until this month. This looks like the mid-way dip that we also saw in 2013 and 2017.”

PlanB is known in the crypto industry for his Bitcoin Stock-to-Flow, or S2F, model. The model essentially projects Bitcoin’s price along an upward path in tandem with its halvings and increasing scarcity. He has also constructed a number of other models around the concept, factoring in different aspects.

Over the past several months, Bitcoin has dwarfed its 2017 all-time price high, hitting just shy of $65,000 on April 14, according to TradingView data. In the following days, BTC proceeded to fall down near $47,500 by April 23 — roughly a 26% decline. The move, however, is not out of line with previous Bitcoin bull cycles, according to PlanB’s tweet.

PlanB’s tweet on Friday also included a chart of Bitcoin’s price action during the bull markets that ensued following each of its previous halvings. Halvings occurred in 2012, 2016 and 2020. Bull markets followed in 2013, 2017 and 2020/2021.

Previous bull runs have sustained sizable pullbacks in price amid the backdrop of a greater macro bull cycle. Based on BraveNewCoin’s BLX chart on TradingView, during the bull run of 2013, after notable upside price action, Bitcoin suffered a crash of about 75% between April and July 2013. After that drop, Bitcoin went on to post significant gains before 2014 hit.

In September of 2017, Bitcoin suffered a drop of roughly 40% following significant gains, but went on to hit new highs in subsequent months before falling into a bear market the year after.

Governing body of Louisiana gives Bitcoin its nod of approval

Louisiana recently gave a shout out to Bitcoin’s success in a new resolution.

Bitcoin has gained increasing levels of adoption over the past several months amid its rise past $60,000. The government of the U.S. state of Louisiana recently released a resolution in which it noted some of Bitcoin’s (BTC) accomplishments.

“THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the House of Representatives of the Legislature of Louisiana does hereby commend Satoshi Nakamoto for his contribution to economic security,” said House Resolution No. 33 from Rep. Mark Wright. According to an article from The Hill, the document was signed on Thursday.

The shout out to anonymous Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto came after the document gave BTC a pat on the back for its success in terms of adoption and market capitalization. The first lines of the resolution read:

“To commend Bitcoin for its success in becoming the first decentralized trillion dollar asset and to encourage the state and local governments to consider ways that could help them benefit from the increased use of this new technology.”

Bitcoin achieved a market cap greater than $1 trillion in early 2021. The milestone occurred following the asset’s break of its 2017 record high, which it tallied in late 2020.

The Louisiana document described a number of details around Bitcoin, including noting its prevalence, its decentralization and its usage. The resolution even pointed toward the asset as a gold alternative. “Bitcoin, which could potentially replace gold as a monetary reserve, is limited and finite and there is a maximum capacity of only twenty-one million bitcoins allowed to be produced,” the document said.

Over the past year or so, a number of companies have bought into Bitcoin as an asset, leading to increased mainstream attention.