BTC Futures Open Interest Soars Leading up to Bitcoin ETF’s Official Launch

BTC Futures Open Interest Soars Leading up to Bitcoin ETF's Official Launch

Prior to the launch of the Proshares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO), open interest in bitcoin futures products has been surging since the start of the month, according to data from the Coinbase Institutional arm Skew Analytics. Binance and FTX command the lion’s share of bitcoin futures’ open interest with 40.67% of the market. Moreover, data from bybt.com’s bitcoin futures’ open interest metrics, shows the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) commands 15.54% of all the open interest in bitcoin tallied this week.

Bitcoin Futures Open Interest Has Risen Significantly

On Tuesday, October 19, 2021, the first exchange-traded fund based on bitcoin futures was launched in the United States. So far, Proshares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO) is trading above the ETF’s initial value when the opening bell kick-started trading.

Since the first bitcoin ETF is based on BTC derivatives markets, prior to the launch a large influx of bitcoin futures open interest was recorded by a number of analytical web portals.

On October 12, Coinbase Institutional’s Skew Analytics tweeted about the massive open interest stemming from bitcoin futures markets. “Bitcoin futures open interest have been surging since the start of the month,” the official Coinbase Institutional Skew Twitter account said.

Additionally, the account noted that BTC options markets were quite different. “Bitcoin options market seems cautiously positioned ahead of ETF catalysts with skew rallying back to positive territory,” Skew remarked the following day.

Binance, FTX Command 40.67% of Bitcoin Open Interest – CME Group Captures Close to 16%

Data from bybt.com indicates that Binance rules the roost as far as bitcoin futures open interest dominance is concerned. Statistics indicate that Binance commands 23.5% of all the bitcoin open interest among all the BTC derivatives markets trading today.

Binance has around $5.54 billion recorded, while FTX Exchange captures around $4.05 billion or 17.17%. Open interest (OI) metrics from CME Group have increased as CME now holds the third-largest position in terms of OI. CME has seen a 1.35% increase in OI and metrics show CME commands 15.54% of all the bitcoin futures’ open interest.

CME is followed by bitcoin futures markets such as Bybit, Okex, Deribit, Huobi, and Bitmex. Collectively all five of the mentioned crypto derivatives exchanges command 35.56% of all the bitcoin OI tallied.

What do you think about bitcoin futures’ open interest surging before the bitcoin ETF listed today? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

As DOGE, SHIB Markets Fall Back, Baby Doge Coin and Dogelon Mars Prices Skyrocket

As DOGE, SHIB Markets Fall Back Baby Doge Coin and Dogelon Mars Prices Skyrocket

Following shiba inu’s 260% gains during the last 30 days, the third-largest meme-based crypto asset in terms of market capitalization, baby doge coin (BABYDOGE), has taken the lead in terms of market performance. Another meme asset, dogelon mars (ELON) has soared 286% this past week. Moreover, during the last seven days, baby doge coin’s price spiked 40% in value and over 3.4% in the last 24 hours.

This Past Week Dogelon Mars and Baby Doge Coin Soared in Value

While bitcoin (BTC) has spiked over the $60K zone and currently rests above $62K per unit, a number of other crypto-assets have followed the leading digital currency’s rise. The original and popular meme-based crypto-asset dogecoin (DOGE) has increased in value 6.4% during the last week, but two other meme cryptos have skyrocketed in recent times.

As far as the top meme-based crypto assets, in terms of market capitalization, two unique tokens have seen massive gains. The spikes in value follow the second-largest meme-based crypto shiba inu’s (SHIB) significant rise a week and a half ago.

The first-largest mover as far as meme currencies are concerned is dogelon mars (ELON), which has increased by 73.6% in the last 24 hours. Weekly stats show ELON is up a whopping 314.8% in value and the crypto asset trades for way less than a U.S. penny at $0.000000619134 per unit.

While dogelon has made it to the third-largest market cap in terms of meme-based crypto assets, ELON’s cap is only $332 million. That’s a far cry from SHIB’s $14 billion market valuation and DOGE’s $32.5 billion.

Baby Doge Moves Up the Ladder to the 4th Largest Meme Currency Market Cap

On August 28, 2021, coingecko’s “Top Meme Tokens” by market cap indicated that dogelon mars held the eighth largest market position. Today, dogelon mars is holding the third spot, but by only $12 million, as the crypto asset baby doge coin (BABYDOGE) has captured the fourth position with $310 million.

BABYDOGE is up 40% this past week and over 3.4% during the last day. Just like ELON, the crypto asset baby doge coin is also trading for less than a U.S. penny. At the time of writing, BABYDOGE is swapping for $0.000000001700 per coin and during the last day, it saw $9,062,901 in 24-hour trade volume.

Meanwhile, SHIB has dropped 6.8% this past week and DOGE is down 3.0% over the last 24 hours. As far as market performance is concerned, dogelon mars and baby doge coin are outshining their predecessors.

What do you think about dogelon mars and baby doge coin spiking in value during the last week? Let us know your thoughts about this subject in the comments section below.

Top Ten Crypto Market Capitalizations Shifted a Great Deal Since the Last Time BTC Hit $60K

Top Ten Crypto Market Capitalizations Shifted a Great Deal Since the Last Time BTC Hit $60K

The price of bitcoin recently jumped above the $60,000 per unit mark on October 15, and the leading crypto asset has not seen prices this high since mid-April six months ago. However, as far as the top digital assets are concerned, in terms of market capitalization, things are a whole lot different. For instance, ether tokens are worth a lot more than they were six months ago and binance coin values were higher back then than they are today.

Six Months Later as Bitcoin Returns to $60K, Some Crypto Coins Trade for More Value, While Others Trade for Less

On April 11, 2021, statistics from coinmarketcap.com’s historical snapshot data show that on that day, bitcoin (BTC) exchanged hands for $60,204 per unit. BTC also reached an all-time high three days later on Apr 14, 2021, at $64,804 per coin that week. The data from the historical snapshot indicates that ethereum (ETH) was swapping for $2,157 per coin on April 11 and today, a single ether is trading for $3,761 per unit.

The stats six months ago show binance coin (BNB) held the third position six months ago and at the time each BNB traded for $525. Prices are a bit lower than they were back then and BNB lost the third position to cardano (ADA) for a few months. Today, metrics show that BNB is swapping for $480 per coin which is 9.375% lower than the price six months ago. At that time, XRP held the fourth position in terms of market cap but today, XRP has slid to the sixth position.

The stablecoin tether (USDT) held the fifth spot back then, today it is sitting at number four. Like ethereum (ETH), cardano (ADA) is another coin that was trading for lower prices on April 11. At the time, ADA exchanged hands for $1.27 per coin and on October 18, ADA trades for $2.12 per unit. Polkadot (DOT) held the seventh position trading for $41.42 per DOT six months ago, today DOT trades for a touch lower at $40.76 and sits in the eighth largest position.

Litecoin, Uniswap, Chainlink Bumped Out of the Top 10 Theta, Filecoin, Tron, Vechain Slip Out of the Top 20

Litecoin (LTC), uniswap (UNI), and chainlink (LINK) held the last three positions in the top ten respectively. But none of these coins are in the top ten positions anymore and UNI is the closest today. Positioned at 14 today, UNI is trading for $25.39 but on April 11, the token changed hands for $29.98. LTC was holding the eighth largest market valuation six months ago, but today it has slid to the 16th largest. LTC exchanged hands for $253.63 and today its much lower at $185.22.

Chainlink (LINK) was swapping hands for $33.92 per LINK back then, but on October 18, the price is around $25.59. LINK at that time held the tenth-largest spot and it now holds the 18th position. Missing from the top 20 coins that were seen on the list back then include tokens like theta (THETA) filecoin (FIL), tron (TRON) and vechain (VET). One notable gainer is solana (SOL) which moved from the 20th top position to the crypto economy’s seventh-largest spot in terms of valuation.

What do you think about the top ten crypto coin shift and some of the crypto assets that were bumped out of the top ten and twenty market positions during the last six months?

A Slew of Defi Tokens Outperform Bitcoin’s Weekly Gains, Defi TVL and NFT Sales Spike

A Slew of Defi Tokens Outperform Bitcoin's Weekly Gains, Defi TVL and NFT Sales Spike

October has been a strong month for cryptocurrencies like bitcoin but a number of decentralized finance (defi) tokens have seen higher double-digit gains this past week. Moreover, non-fungible token (NFT) sales have picked up and after the total-value locked (TVL) in defi crossed $200 billion on October 5, two weeks later another $22 billion has been added to the TVL.

Defi Network Tokens Polkadot, Polygon, Binance Coin, Stacks Outperform Bitcoin’s Weekly Gains

Bitcoin (BTC) has been doing extremely well and BTC dominance has increased to 45.3% during the last week. However, a decent quantity of defi tokens from specific blockchain networks have outperformed BTC during the last week.

In fact, out of all the crypto assets in existence today, nine different digital assets saw better gains than bitcoin and a great deal of them are focused on defi. Polkadot (DOT) was this week’s leader with an increase of 19.6% and those gains were followed by polygon’s (MATIC) 19.4% percentage gains. Other strong gainers that outperformed bitcoin included binance coin (BNB), stacks (STX), and stellar (XLM).

Total-Value Locked in Defi Sees $22 Billion Added in 2 Weeks

Two weeks ago, on October 5, the total-value locked (TVL) in defi surpassed $200 billion and today defillama.com stats indicate the TVL is $222 billion. The decentralized exchange (dex) platform Curve holds the largest dominance with 7.72% of the TVL in defi. Curve is followed by Aave, Makerdao, and Wrapped Bitcoin in terms of defi dominance on October 18.

Ethereum captures $152.27 billion of the total TVL in defi and the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) commands $19.22 billion. Blockchains that have seen significant increases in TVL in defi include networks like Solana, Terra, and Avalanche. While Avalanche saw a 31.24% TVL gain, Harmony’s TVL increased by 24% during the last week.

Monthly Non-Fungible Token Sales Increase, Opensea Nears $10 Billion in All-Time NFT Sales

Metrics from nonfungible.com’s 30-day market history indicates that NFT sales jumped a great deal on October 5, and have continued to rise. NFT sales recorded during the last month were around $1.836 billion across 174,529 active market wallets.

Statistics from Dune Analytics show that the total transaction volume for NFTs measured in ETH, across 5.9 million transactions, is around 3,886,298 ether or $11.1 billion using today’s exchange rates.

Moreover, dappradar.com data shows that the NFT marketplace Opensea is nearing $10 billion in all-time sales and currently has $9.19 billion recorded so far. Axie Infinity has $2.61 billion and the NFT marketplace Rarible has recorded $230.76 million in all-time sales.

Polygon, Binance Smart Chain Addresses Tap All-Time Highs, Dex Trade Volume Remains Flat While Sushiswap Volume ‘Increased Sharply’

Additionally, statistics recorded by Coin98 Analytics weekly defi report indicates that the number of BSC active addresses reached an all-time high. However, the Polygon (MATIC) network surpassed BSC as far as the quantity of wallets created onchain.

“It also reached the ATH of 100 million wallets,” Coin98 Analytics said in its report. “The number of Ethereum wallets has remained unchanged from last week.”

The weekly report also discusses defi’s liquidity by protocol, dex platform weekly trading volume, and the daily active dex users as well. The report highlights that while dex trade volume has not grown much, it maintained $20 to $22 billion each month. Coin98 Analytics detailed, however, that Sushiswap volume “increased sharply, reaching $2.7 billion.”

What do you think about the defi tokens outperforming bitcoin and the TVL increase during the last two weeks? What do you think about the NFT sales volumes increasing and the address increase on Polygon and Binance Smart Chain? Let us know what you think about these subjects in the comments section below.

Big Three Credit Agency Fitch Says Stablecoin Growth Could Be ‘Disruptive’ to Securities Markets

Big Three Credit Agency Fitch Says Stablecoin Growth Could Be 'Disruptive' to Securities Markets

American credit rating agency Fitch Ratings, one of the ‘Big Three’ credit rating agencies, has published a report that says stablecoin growth could affect securities and commercial paper (CP) markets. The agency says stablecoins could be “disruptive” and “stablecoin-related turbulence” could “transmit shocks” to other markets.

Fitch Ratings: ‘Stablecoins Could Be Disruptive for CP Markets’

On Monday, the ‘Big Three’ credit agency Fitch Ratings published a report on stablecoins and the growth of these new assets. The report follows a study from Fitch that discusses El Salvador adopting bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender in the country. The latest report explains that stablecoins have grown exponentially and the Fitch report’s authors highlight the growth of the popular stablecoin tether (USDT). The study also mentions Facebook’s reported plans to launch a stablecoin crypto asset called “Diem.”

“The rapid growth in stablecoins means these securities holdings are already relatively large,” Fitch noted. “Although Tether’s annualised market value growth slowed to 45% in 2Q21, it has risen by 230% since the start of 2021 to 15 October to reach USD68.6 billion,” the rating agency added. This growth and “reserve allocations” could end up becoming a “significant investor group” in the U.S. commercial paper market, the study from Fitch Ratings suggests. The paper adds:

Stablecoins could be disruptive for CP markets; for example, owing to run risks. Stablecoin-related turbulence could both affect the CP market itself and transmit shocks to other market participants. Risks could be aggravated if the infrastructure and partners used by stablecoin operators to engage with traditional markets lack a record in the smooth handling of transactions during periods of market stress or volatility.

Fitch Ratings Report: ‘The Regulatory Approach Towards Stablecoins Will Affect How the Sector Develops’

In the article, the term “disruptive” is highlighted with a hyperlink that leads to another article published by Fitch Ratings on July 1, 2021. That specific report says stablecoins could “pose new short-term credit market risks.”

Fitch researchers say in the latest stablecoin report published on Monday, that regulations will define how the stablecoin sector develops. At present, the Fitch authors say regulatory approaches in the EU and U.S. are currently “unclear.” The report alludes to the belief that government entities may be able to keep stablecoins defined under the promise that reserves like cash and low-risk government securities are maintained. Overcollateralization, something that algorithmic and decentralized finance (defi) stablecoins like DAI leverage, could reduce overall damage, the Fitch report concludes.

“A requirement for stablecoin operators to hold more reserves in safe and highly liquid assets could reduce allocations to CP, but raise the influence of stablecoins on the short-dated government market,” the Fitch Ratings report explains. “Other initiatives, including the potential launch of central-bank digital currencies, could also significantly affect demand for stablecoins.”

What do you think about the recently published Fitch Ratings report that explains stablecoin growth could affect securities markets and other areas of finance? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Local Businesses in New York Urge Governor to Impose Statewide Bitcoin Mining Moratorium

The governor of New York state, Kathy Hochul, has been urged by a group of local companies to deny business permits to bitcoin miners. The letter specifically asks for the “denial of permits for the Greenidge Generating Station and the Fortistar North Tonawanda Facility.” The letter also calls for the New York government to assess “proof-of-work” (PoW) digital currency mining in the state as the local businesses believe PoW mining “drastically undermines New York’s climate goals.”

Local Businesses From New York Urge Governor Kathy Hochul to Impose a Statewide Bitcoin Mining Moratorium

Climate change is a big deal to a number of local businesses in the state of New York as a large coalition of companies has urged governor Kathy Hochul to deny bitcoin mining permits. The coalition’s letter is backed by businesses and organizations such as Seatuck Environmental Association, Ravines Wine Cellars, Peconic Baykeeper, Nassau Hiking & Outdoor Club, NYPAN Environmental Committee, Mothers Out Front New York, and New Yorkers for Clean Power.

“We, the undersigned organizations, businesses, and labor groups, write today to urge your administration to issue a statewide moratorium on proof-of-work (PoW) cryptocurrency mining until a thorough statewide Generic Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) is conducted, and to deny the permits for the Greenidge Generating Station and the Fortistar North Tonawanda Facility,” the letter states. The letter, published to earthjustice.org on October 13, adds:

“These ‘mining’ activities, particularly proof-of-work cryptocurrency mining use enormous amounts of energy to power the computers needed to conduct business – should this activity expand in New York, it could drastically undermine New York’s climate goals established under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.”

New York’s Bumpy Relationship With Bitcoin Mining

The state of New York (NY) is no stranger to such controversies over bitcoin mining as debate over the subject has raged on for a few years now. In 2018, a number of counties in NY, like the Plattsburgh Common Council, passed new guidelines for miners that aimed to control noise and fire safety regulations. Despite the stricter rules in specific areas, bitcoin miners have been flocking to NY over the last two years. Meanwhile, as miners entered the New York market, operations started getting complaints from local neighbors and NY politicians.

In December 2020, an environmental organization called Sierra Club, a committee aimed at preserving the Finger Lakes region, filed a lawsuit against the NY town of Torrey for allowing the Greenidge Generation power plant to expand its mining operations. Sierra Club asked the town of Torrey and the Torrey Planning Board to block the construction with an injunction. Senator Kevin Parker (D) believes bitcoin miners should halt operations over climate change concerns as well.

In May 2021, senator Parker introduced legislation to address these concerns as he explained that bitcoin mining “threatens not only New York’s climate goals, under the CLCPA, but also global energy policy, such as the Paris Agreement.”

Parker’s bill aimed to impose a moratorium on the operation of cryptocurrency mining centers until the NY government could complete an assessment of the environmental impact. If the moratorium was imposed, bitcoin mining operations that could prove the business does not “adversely affect the state greenhouse gas emission targets in the climate leadership and community protection act of 2019,” could operate legally under NY law.

Letter Stresses ‘Climate Crisis in New York Is Here Now’

The recent letter to NY governor Kathy Hochul says that bitcoin mining facilities are threatening the state’s advances toward addressing climate change.

“In New York, data mining operations using warehouses full of computers have set up shop in upstate areas siphoning electricity from New York’s grid, ‘re-powering’ defunct fossil-fueled power plants, thus seriously jeopardizing the state’s progress on and meeting mandates for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions,” the letter emphasizes.

The letter stresses that the group of local businesses want governor Hochul to act now. The letter concludes:

“As you have witnessed in your early weeks on the job, the climate crisis in New York is here now. New York City recently saw unprecedented flooding that led to the loss of lives – strong climate action is needed now more than ever. We urge you to lead the way and set a national precedent on the issue of proof-of-work cryptocurrency by issuing a statewide moratorium and denying the permits for Greenidge and Fortistar. Thank you for your time and consideration of our comments.”

What do you think about the letter to NY governor Kathy Hochul that wants a statewide moratorium placed on bitcoin mining operations in New York? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

As Bitcoin’s Price Spikes Pods of BTC Whales Begin to Shrink in Size

As Bitcoin's Price Spikes Herds of BTC Whales Begin to Shrink in Size

Recent metrics from a variety of analytical web portals show that the quantity of bitcoin whales has been shrinking in recent times. The data indicates that the leading crypto asset has been distributed quite a bit since the price run-up started.

Pods of Bitcoin Whales Shrink — Addresses With Small Quantities of Bitcoin Catch the Downward Distribution Cycle

Today, data shows that bitcoin whales are shrinking and metrics from bitinfocharts.com’s top 100 richest bitcoin addresses list compared to a whale count article Bitcoin.com News published on May 14, show things have changed. Statistics from Glassnode show that whale-sized addresses with 1,000 BTC+ have dipped to the smallest amount in eight years and ten months ago.

In addition to those two sites that offer onchain whale analytics, whalemap.io also implies a decline in whales (balance ≥ 1k) and a downward distribution cycle. Also, the top 100 richest bitcoin addresses from bitinfocharts.com indicate that on May 13, 2021, there were three whales with 100,000 to 1 million BTC.

As Bitcoin's Price Spikes Pods of BTC Whales Begin to Shrink in Size

There are still just three today, and that number hasn’t changed in quite some time. In terms of addresses holding 10,000 to 100,000 bitcoin, that has reduced since May 13, from 85 to 77 addresses. As far as holders with 1,000 to 10,000 bitcoin, there were approximately 2,078 addresses five months ago and today the count is 2,069.

Trickle-Down Distribution — Bitcoin Whales Offloaded Coins During the 2012 Bull Run

Additionally, addresses with 100 to 1,000 BTC were around 13,989 five months ago and today are 13,987. The bottom threshold of addresses holding 10 to 100 BTC or less has increased a great deal during the last five months.

In recent weeks, all the BTC addresses with less than 1,000 held have swelled. 51.24% of addresses recorded own between 0 to 0.001 BTC, which is 19,716,447 bitcoin addresses. Addresses that hold 0.1 to 1 BTC today equal around 2,437,951 bitcoin addresses and there are 665,893 holders with at least 1 to 10 BTC.

It’s quite possible that while bitcoin (BTC) rose over 25% during the last 30 days, a number of bitcoin whales took some cream off the top by selling. It’s also probable that whales have simply dispersed their bitcoin wealth into more addresses.

The last time BTC whale addresses were this low was the holiday season in 2012 and that followed bitcoin’s first bull run. In the summer of 2012 and into the fall months, BTC tapped a high of $30 per unit, but in December 2012, it was just over $2 per coin. Whale count saw a major downward distribution cycle at that time as well. A whale with 1,000 bitcoin on Sunday evening is worth roughly $62 million.

What do you think about the whale count shrinking? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

The ‘Holding Billionaires Accountable’ Lie — Media, Big Tech Fact Checkers Mischaracterize Angst Toward Biden’s Tax Proposal

The 'Holding Billionaires Accountable' Lie — Media, Big Tech Fact Checkers Mischaracterize Angst Toward Biden's Tax Proposal

U.S. citizens and financial institutions are concerned about the Biden administration’s goals to get banks to report to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) aggregate inflows from a customer’s bank account annually that exceed $600. Mainstream media is reporting and Big Tech’s swarm of fact-checkers have said that some lawmakers are mischaracterizing the proposal.

Biden Administration’s $600 Tax Proposal Ignites Heated Debate and So-Called Fact-Checking

In May, it was reported that Biden’s IRS planned to add more staff and focus on cryptocurrency exchange. The accounts stemmed from a Treasury Department report, and the department’s officials projected that during the next decade it could net $700 billion from tax offenders. The following decade later, the Treasury expects the plan to net $1.6 trillion, and the Federal entity believes those estimates are conservative. At the time of writing, the tax proposal dubbed the “American Families Plan Tax Compliance Agenda” is still being debated.

There’s a lot of confusion surrounding this proposal and if users post about it on Facebook, usually a fact-checker is assigned to the post that says lawmakers are mischaracterizing the rule. Twitter’s news feed says the exact same thing as it claims skeptics are conflating the definitions of the proposal in an attempt to say the IRS can view all transactions over $600.

“Most of the money [generated by the tax enforcement plan] —$460 billion—would come from the second big piece,” explains the Wall Street Journal. “That plan increases the government’s ability to see into a current blind spot—business income where there is no independent verification to the IRS, as there is for wages where W-2 forms go to workers and the government. Banks and payment providers would be required to report inflows and outflows from accounts each year, starting in 2023.”

Janet Yellen, the Treasury secretary, has been urging lawmakers to agree on the IRS proposal. “There’s a lot of tax fraud and cheating that’s going on,” Yellen explained to CBS reporter Norah O’Donnell. Furthermore, Yellen noted that the new requirement for financial institutions is “absolutely not” a way for the government to poke around into the financial affairs of average Americans.

Liberty Activist Asks: ‘Why Is the IRS Allowed to See Any of My Bank Transactions Without a Warrant?’

Yellen and Biden have continuously stressed that the goal is to have America’s billionaire-class accountable. Meanwhile, there’s a number of loud and vocal voices explaining that the proposal is intrusive.

“Whether it’s $600 or $10,000, the IRS has NO business monitoring your bank account,” Senator Michael Rulli tweeted on October 15. “For real though, it doesn’t matter if it’s $600 or $60,000 – why is the IRS allowed to see ANY of my bank transactions without a warrant?” liberty activist Naomi Mathew said the day before. Another Twitter profile “Juliesbac” exclaimed:

We should be completely flipping the script at this opportunity. Not only should the IRS not be able to look into $600 transactions. They need to be completely banned from looking at any transaction without a subpoena. They serve us. We don’t serve them.

The co-host of the broadcast “Breaking Points,” Saagar Enjeti, said that the “IRS is 3X more likely to audit someone making less than 25,000 than someone in the top 1%. The $600 dollar proposal would only give them even more ammunition to go after working-class Americans.”

Nancy Pelosi Says $600 Tax Proposal to Be Included in Reconciliation Bill, ‘Hold Billionaires Accountable’ Line Considered a Farce

Meanwhile, Nancy Pelosi explained that Democratic lawmakers plan to support Biden’s tax proposal. The new tax enforcement concept will be included in the Reconciliation Bill, Pelosi said.

“Yes there are concerns that some people have but if people are breaking the law and not paying their taxes one way to track them is through the banking measure,” Pelosi told the media last week.

A political columnist from The Hill, Joe Concha, told his 113,000 Twitter followers that the “hold billionaires accountable” line Yellen and others are saying “will win [the] lie of the year.” Meanwhile, there are many who simply scorned the government for the new proposal as the financial rules are consistently broken by the elite.

“Can’t stop thinking about how the IRS wants to know what I’m doing with $600 while the Pandora papers literally exposed the shadow economy and tax evasion of billionaires,” one individual said last Wednesday.

What do you think about the debate over the new IRS proposal backed by the Biden administration and Treasury secretary Janet Yellen? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Valve Bans Games Built on Blockchain, NFTs, and Cryptocurrencies From Steam Gaming Platform

Valve Bans Games Built on Blockchain, NFTs, and Cryptocurrencies From Steam Gaming Platform

This past week, Valve, the parent company of the video game digital distribution service Steam updated its distribution onboarding guidelines. According to the newly updated rules, the company is banning any “applications built on blockchain technology that issue or allow exchange of cryptocurrencies or NFTs.”

Newly Updated Onboarding Guidelines for Steam Says ‘You Shouldn’t Publish’ Applications ‘Built on Blockchain,’ or ‘Allow the Exchange of NFTs, Cryptocurrencies’

Valve seems to have an issue with games that involve blockchain technology, crypto assets, or non-fungible token (NFT) collectibles. The company quietly updated the firm’s onboarding page and the new rule was added to the list of games “you shouldn’t publish on Steam” Interestingly, Steam once supported bitcoin (BTC) for payments at the storefront but stopped supporting BTC in December 2017. The decision in 2017 was made 18 months after Valve allowed the storefront to accept the leading crypto asset for payments.

The updated guidelines show that Valve is now reluctant to allow blockchain games, NFT collectibles, and crypto assets on the platform. The decision to ban these concepts comes at a time when blockchain gaming and the NFT industry have exploded in value and popularity. For instance, the blockchain game Axie Infinity has been very popular and has captured $2.59 billion in all-time NFT sales, according to dappradar.com metrics.

Age of Rust Developer: ‘This Is a Setback for All’

On October 14, 2021, the developer of the blockchain game called Age of Rust detailed that the game would no longer be available on Steam. Community: A few minutes ago, we were notified that Steam will be kicking *all blockchain games* off the platform, including Age of Rust, because NFTs have value. Behind the scenes, we’ve had good communication and have been upfront with Steam,” the Age of Rust dev said. The blockchain game operator added:

We chose to be upfront about blockchain gaming & NFTs. As a result, we finally lost the battle with Steam. While I’m disappointed [about] Age of Rust being removed, the point is more to the fact that blockchain games as [a] whole are going to be removed. This is [a] setback for all.

A number of other video game fans and blockchain game developers were disappointed with Valve’s decision to ban these blockchain ideas. The editor at Kotaku AU, Alex Walker, opined that he was not surprised by Valve’s decision. “Not hugely surprised Valve has banned NFTs and crypto games. I doubt it’s because of the ecological concerns, but more they already have a secondary market and don’t want games to circumvent that,” Walker said. The Age of Rust developer said that it respects Valve’s choice.

“Steam’s point of view is that items have value and they don’t allow items that can have real-world value on their platform,” the official Age of Rust account emphasized. “While I respect their choice, I fundamentally believe that NFTs and blockchain games are the future. It’s why I started this journey with all of you.”

What do you think about Valve banning blockchain games, NFTs, and crypto assets from the Steam platform? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele Taunts Economist Steve Hanke After Bitcoin’s Price Skyrockets

Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele Taunts Economist Steve Hanke After Bitcoin's Price Skyrockets

On October 15, the day bitcoin’s price surpassed the $60K per unit handle, Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele taunted the professor of applied economics at Johns Hopkins University, Steve Hanke, over his recent statements. At the time, the well known economist warned that El Salvador faces “financial ruin” with “Bukele at the helm,” after El Salvador’s president bought the bitcoin dip when the price was down.

3 Weeks Ago Steve Hanke Said ‘With Bukele at the Helm’ His Country Faces ‘Financial Ruin,’ Bukele Responds After Bitcoin Spikes and Says: ‘You Were Saying?’

When El Salvador adopted bitcoin (BTC) during the first week of September, the first day the law was enacted, BTC’s fiat value dropped a great deal. At that time, Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele told his Twitter followers that El Salvador was “buying the dip” as the country added 150 BTC to its stash. Meanwhile, the professor of applied economics at Johns Hopkins University, Steve Hanke, has criticized the Salvadoran president and tagged him in a Twitter post on September 23.

“Nayib Bukele is playing fast and [loose] with El Salvador’s tax dollars again,” Hanke said. “After bitcoin prices tumbled to a 6wk low, Bukele bought 150 more coins [and] proudly said that ‘We just bought the dip.’ With Bukele at the helm, ELSL faces financial ruin.”

Meanwhile, the leading crypto asset bitcoin (BTC) did fall into a slump in September, but as the month transitioned into October, BTC’s price skyrocketed. On October 15, Bukele decided to retweet Hanke’s September 23 statement and added a remark of his own. “You were saying?” Bukele tauntingly asked the well known economist. BTC has since been hovering above the $60K price range during the last 24 hours.

The following day, Hanke responded and said: “Yes, I was saying ‘financial ruin.’ Have you checked the price plunge of El Salvador’s dollar-denominated bonds since September 7th?” Hanke asked Bukele. “As the traders say, El Salvador’s bonds due in 2023, 2025, & 2029 are ‘distressed,’” Hanke added.

Hanke Says ‘Private, Digital Money Is Nothing New,’ and Claims ‘the Case for Crypto as a Driver of Innovation Is Thin’

Furthermore, the founder of Shapeshift, Erik Voorhees, also responded to Hanke’s tweet on Saturday with an animated GIF that shows goalposts moving. Another individual stated: “Hanke sounds like [the] people who were afraid of electricity in the 19th century.” Hanke has clearly stated that he’s not fond of bitcoin (BTC) many times, and he’s warned about El Salvador’s bitcoin adoption in June.

At that time, Hanke said he didn’t think it’s a good idea for the Latin American country to use bitcoin as legal tender and he further added that the decision could “completely collapse the economy.” Despite his angst toward bitcoin, the economist has said in the past that central banks fuel wealth loss and the world could use less of them. However, Hanke is a fan of the creation of currency boards, which essentially leverages monetary authority to maintain a fixed exchange rate with foreign currencies.

In more recent times, Hanke has said that “private, digital money is nothing new. Most money has been produced privately and in a digital form for decades,” Hanke claims. In an opinion editorial published via the National Review, Hanke stressed that “the case for crypto as a driver of innovation is thin.”

What do you think about Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele provoking Steve Hanke to respond? Do you agree with Nayib Bukele or do you agree with the economist Steve Hanke? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Bitcoin’s Unknown Creator Satoshi Nakamoto Is Now the 20th Wealthiest Person on Earth

In mid-April the creator of the Bitcoin network, Satoshi Nakamoto entered the world’s top 20 richest billionaire list but after bitcoin’s price dropped, the inventor’s wealth plummeted. This week, Nakamoto has once again joined the top 20 richest people on the face of the earth. The last time, Nakamoto made the 19th position, and this time around, Bitcoin’s inventor is now the 20th richest person(s) on the face of the planet.

6 Months After Bitcoin’s All-Time High, Satoshi Nakamoto Becomes the 20th Wealthiest Person in the World

The leading crypto asset bitcoin (BTC) has skyrocketed past the $60K handle and tapped a high of $62,945 on Friday. Using today’s exchange rate and the estimated stash of bitcoin Satoshi Nakamoto reportedly owns, indicates that Bitcoin’s inventor is the 16th richest person or persons worldwide. The last time Bitcoin.com News reported on this subject, Nakamoto climbed from the 159th richest person in the globe to the 19th in a mere five months. Using today’s BTC exchange rates on October 17, 2021, six months later, Nakamoto is now the 20th richest person(s) worldwide.

The reason why people assume Satoshi Nakamoto owns all this wealth, is because it is estimated that Bitcoin’s inventor owns around 1 million BTC. Of course, there are lower-bound estimates which say the inventor only collected 750,000 BTC and then upper-bound estimates that assume Nakamoto has more than 1.1 million BTC. The crypto community at large assumes that Nakamoto has around 1 million bitcoin and because he, she or they acquired it during the first year of BTC’s existence, the inventor owns all the forks tied to the stash as well.

Between Bitcoin and 3 Forks, Nakamoto Has Roughly $61 Billion in Unspent Wealth

This means that on October 17, 2021, Nakamoto owns roughly $60.7 billion in bitcoin (BTC), $625 million in bitcoin cash (BCH), $169 million in bitcoinsv (BSV), and $191 million in ecash (formerly known as BCHA or Bitcoin ABC). That’s a grand total of $60.9 billion between those four networks which places Bitcoin’s inventor at the 20th position in Forbe’s real-time billionaires’ list. Satoshi Nakamoto is above the net worth of ​​Zhang Yiming, the billionaire from China. However, Nakamoto’s wealth is below the world’s 19th richest as Walmart’s Rob Walton has around $75.3 billion to his name.

What’s pretty amazing is that one of the world’s 20 richest people in the world is the mysterious inventor of Bitcoin. A person or group of people that have yet to spend a single penny of the $60.9 billion worth of crypto assets. Some people assume that Nakamoto may have passed away and this is why the inventor has never and will never spend the stash of 1 million coins collected when the creator kick-started the BTC network. However, Nakamoto may still be alive and may still have access to these riches.

Bitcoin’s inventor still has to catch up to the world’s two richest people which include Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos respectively. Musk has around $214.8 billion in wealth today according to Forbe’s real-time billionaires’ list and Jeff Bezos owns around $197.8 billion. In order to overtake Musk’s net worth, a single BTC will need to be valued at over $215K per unit. If BTC taps $100K this year, Bitcoin’s inventor will be in the top 10 richest person(s) list next to Warren Buffet and Mukesh Ambani.

What do you think about Bitcoin’s inventor Satoshi Nakamoto becoming the 20th richest person(s) on planet earth? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Digital Asset Firm Bakkt to Go Public After Completing Merger — BKKT Shares Set to Trade on NYSE Monday

Digital Asset Firm Bakkt to Go Public After Completing Merger — BKKT Shares Set to Trade on NYSE Monday

The digital asset company Bakkt Holdings has completed a merger with a firm called VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings and the combined business will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on October 18. Bakkt revealed it was aiming to go public last January, and the Bakkt listing on Monday will leverage the ticker “BKKT.”

Digital Currency Firm Bakkt Set to List on NYSE Next Week

The digital currency firm Bakkt is set to start trading on NYSE next week, according to an announcement from the combined firms on Friday. The shares will be called “BKKT” and the public-listing was made possible via a merger with the company VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings, according to the Intercontinental Exchange’s (ICE) and VPC’s press statements.

VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings is an affiliate of Victory Park Capital, a global investment firm. “At the extraordinary general meeting of its shareholders held on October 14, 2021, the shareholders voted to approve its previously announced business combination with Bakkt Holdings, LLC, the digital asset marketplace founded in 2018,” the announcement details. The press announcement adds:

Approximately 85.1% of the votes cast at the meeting voted to approve the business combination.

Merger Vote Details to Be Included in Form 8-K, Bakkt’s Recent Partnership With Google

The news concerning Bakkt’s latest deal follows the firm’s recent collaboration announcement with Google. Bakkt stressed that the newly inked partnership with Google is meant “to introduce digital assets to millions of consumers.”

The recent merger vote, which took place on October 14, will be included in a current report on Form 8-K to be filed by VIH with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the announcement concludes.

Bakkt’s decision to go public follows a slew of other crypto-asset firms that have recently obtained listing status on NYSE or Nasdaq. The mining manufacturer Canaan was able to offer an initial public offering and the popular crypto exchange Coinbase went public as well.

Meanwhile, the crypto community is under the impression that the first bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) has been approved to start trading as well on Monday.

What do you think about Bakkt merging with VPC and getting listed on the NYSE? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Jack Dorsey Says Square Is Considering Building a ‘Bitcoin Mining System Based on Custom Silicon’

Following the latest report from Cambridge University that shows a large percentage of the Bitcoin network’s hashrate resides in the United States, the CEO of Twitter and Square, Jack Dorsey, has announced that Square is considering building a “bitcoin mining system based on custom silicon.”

Square Considers Building a Mining System

On the same day the CFTC fined Tether Limited and Bitfinex, and the filings that give the impression that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved the Proshares Trust bitcoin futures ETF, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said Square is possibly jumping into the bitcoin mining industry. Dorsey has been a bitcoin proponent for years and he recently explained that Square is in the midst of building a bitcoin hardware wallet in order to “make bitcoin custody more mainstream.”

In recent times Dorsey has also said that bitcoin will be a big part of Twitter’s future. He shared a URL link to a book called “Anatomy of the State” by the economist Murray Rothbard, and Twitter just recently launched a bitcoin tipping feature. Now Dorsey and Square are considering joining the bitcoin mining industry and aim to approach the ecosystem in a different fashion.

“Square is considering building a bitcoin mining system based on custom silicon and open source for individuals and businesses worldwide,” Dorsey said on Friday. “If we do this, we’d follow our hardware wallet model: build in the open in collaboration with the community.”

Dorsey believes mining needs to be “more distributed” and the “more decentralized this is, the more resilient the Bitcoin network becomes.” At the same time, the Square founder said the mining industry needs to progress toward “clean and efficient energy use” and to Dorsey, this requires “innovation in silicon, software, and integration.”

Dorsey Discusses Silicon Design and Says Jesse Dorogusker Plans to Research What’s ‘Required to Take on This Project’

“Silicon design is too concentrated into a few companies,” Dorsey further remarked. “This means supply is likely overly constrained. Silicon development is very expensive, requires long-term investment, and is best coupled tightly with software and system design,” he added. Dorsey also said:

There isn’t enough focus on vertical integration. Considering hardware, software, productization, and distribution requires accountability for delivering to an end customer vs improving a single technology in the chain.

He added that he believes mining is not accessible to everyone, and everyone should be able to plug in a rig and mine. But there’s a lot of complexity and barriers to entry, Dorsey highlighted, and he asked his Twitter followers: “What are the biggest barriers for people running miners?” Toward the end of his thread, he said that Jesse Dorogusker “will start the deep technical investigation required to take on this project.”

What do you think about Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey saying Square is considering joining the bitcoin mining industry? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht’s Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht's Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

As the end of 2021 nears, Ross Ulbricht remains in prison as he continues to serve his draconian double-life prison sentence for creating a website called the Silk Road. Ever since he was arrested, there’s been an ongoing effort to free Ulbricht, as a great majority of individuals and a large swathe of eminent organizations believe his sentence was unjust and the Silk Road court case was a complete miscarriage of justice.

Ross Ulbricht’s Change.org Clemency Petition Nears 500K Signatures, Georgetown Law Professor: ‘Sentence Was Grossly Excessive’

Over the last 12 months Ulbricht has been updating the public regularly about his well-being, and this past summer he spoke publicly for the first time since 2013. Today, Ulbricht’s clemency petition is closing in on half of a million signatures and the effort is only 51,014 signatures away from reaching the 500K signature goal.

Ross Ulbricht is still serving his double-life prison sentence for creating the Silk Road website and his family and close friends are still doubling down on getting him free. The 37-year-old Ulbricht was arrested in 2013 and in February 2015 he was convicted of a number of non-violent criminal charges.

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht's Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

In May 2015, Ulbricht was sentenced to a double-life sentence plus forty years without the possibility of parole. Following his sentence, a great number of individuals and organizations criticized the U.S. government and Ulbricht’s judge for handing down such a harsh punishment. In a statement featured on the web portal freeross.org, Shon Hopwood, a law professor at Georgetown University explains:

Such a sentence should, at the very least, be reserved for the worst crimes committed by repeat offenders…Ross’s crime is nowhere near that category and his sentence was grossly excessive.

In 2017 and 2018, the Ulbricht family and Ross attempted to appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the Supreme Court. However, the attempts were unsuccessful and currently, Ulbricht remains locked up at the United States Penitentiary in Tucson.

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht's Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

This past summer, Ulbricht spoke publicly for the first time since 2013 at the Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami. On Twitter, Ulbricht also keeps the public updated regularly in regards to his overall well-being. This past week, Ulbricht explained he finished teaching an eight-week meditation course.

“It’s very satisfying to teach my fellow prisoners how to meditate. Finding tranquility and equanimity is so valuable for us,” Ulbricht’s Twitter account said on October 8. “We recently finished an 8-week meditation course, and I am happy to say that my 4 students did well. They established a daily practice and learned to sit still without forgetting their breath or nodding off,” he added.

Ulbricht’s Clemency Petition Only 51K Signatures Away From Meeting the 500K Goal

Ulbricht also has the clemency petition addressed to the United States president which declares that his double-life sentence “shocks the conscience.” In the clemency petition’s opening statements, Ross’s mother, Lyn Ulbricht, stresses that “Ross was not treated fairly and his sentence is draconian. Justice was not served,” she adds.

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht's Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

Ulbricht’s clemency petition is nearing a milestone as the petition’s aggregate count of signatures nears 500K. At the time of writing, change.org’s data shows Ulbricht’s clemency petition is 51,014 signatures away from meeting that goal.

The petition sheds light on Ulbricht’s situation and it clearly shows that hundreds of thousands of individuals agree that his sentence was far too harsh. Ulbricht has already served nine years in prison.

The Ongoing Effort to Free Ross — Ulbricht's Clemency Petition Closes in on Half a Million Signatures

“My future died that day in court when I was sentenced to life without parole,” Ulbricht explains in a recent blog post. The change.org clemency petition is filled with people adding commentary to their signatures as well, and signers agree Ulbricht’s current sentence is unjust and needs to be reversed.

“Ross’s sentence is a gross miscarriage of justice. Robbing a man of his life for a nonviolent offence is egregious,” Angela Bertalot writes on the change.org clemency petition. Another individual, Ethan Erkiletian, writes:

Justice should be just and this was anything but. It destroys the credibility of a just judiciary that this man is/was imprisoned the way he was.

Fact is, the more signatures Ulbricht’s petition gets the more it shows a great majority of people are fed up with draconian prison sentences such as Ulbricht’s. Many individuals are spending years behind bars for possession of a plant and society is increasingly realizing that the war on drugs was and still is a complete waste of time.

Ulbricht’s case also shows that the antiquated punishment of simply throwing every criminal in a cage, no matter what the crime, is simply not working and society needs to change this trend.

What do you think about Ross Ulbricht’s clemency petition nearing half of a million signatures? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Survey: 14% of Americans Want Crypto Rewards for Using Their Credit Cards

Survey Shows 14% of Americans Want Cryptocurrency Rewards for Using Their Credit Cards

During the last few years, prepaid cards that offer cryptocurrency rewards have grown popular and a number of digital asset payment cards offer these types of rewards. This means instead of accruing frequent flyer miles or points, consumers get rewarded in crypto assets every time they make a purchase with the card. A recent study with 1,011 Americans shows that 14% of U.S.-based credit card users want cryptocurrency rewards from their credit cards.

Percentage of U.S. Residents Prefer Crypto Asset Card Rewards

It’s been a number of years since the introduction of the first prepaid digital currency payment cards that can be loaded with crypto assets in order to make purchases. There’s now a slew of different crypto-infused cards, as some of them leverage the Mastercard payment network and others utilize Visa’s payment infrastructure. After the intro of a few different kinds of crypto cards, companies started to add cryptocurrency rewards to card users for every purchase.

For instance, Blockfi credit card users can get up to 3.5% bitcoin (BTC) back on purchases. The credit card issued by the firm Crypto.com pays card users rewards in CRO every time they make a purchase. A recent study from couponfollow.com and the report’s author Marc Mezzacca indicate that a significant percentage of Americans want crypto rewards from their cards. Couponfollow’s findings show that on average, the generation called “Baby Boomers” (generally defined as people born from 1946 to 1964) have three credit cards.

Gen Xers (born between 1965 and 1979/80) and Millennials (born between 1981 and 1994/6) have four cards. Gen Zers (born between 1997 and 2012) that participated in the survey have two cards. Out of the 1,011 Americans using the Amazon Mechanical Turk system, “14% of credit card users want cryptocurrency rewards from their credit card.” The study further states:

Millennials and Gen Zers (15%) were more than twice as likely as Baby Boomers (7%) to want cryptocurrency rewards.

Paying With Cash Is a ‘Rare Occurrence’ — Younger Generation and Low Household Income Respondents Used Credit Cards More During Covid-19 Pandemic

Mezzacca says that credit cards are the most popular choice when it comes to paying for goods and services and credit cards are followed by debit cards. Using cash to pay for things these days was a “rare occurrence.” The reason why respondents leveraged card payment services more often these days is due to rewards and cards with no annual fees.

The coronavirus pandemic was also mentioned in the study and it said for half the survey participants, card usage stayed roughly the same. Around a third of respondents said usage was higher because of Covid-19 and “the younger the generation/the lower the household income, the higher it was,” Couponfollow’s researcher said.

What do you think about the card study that shows 14% of Americans want crypto-asset rewards from their payment cards? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

New SEC Filings Give the Impression US Regulators Approved a Bitcoin Futures ETF

New SEC Filings Give the Impression US Regulators Approved a Bitcoin Futures ETF

The price of bitcoin jumped over 8% during the last 24 hours after a number of documents stemming from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) web portal indicated that the Proshares Trust exchange-traded fund (ETF) could be listed as soon as next week. Proshares filed a post-effective amended prospectus on Friday that shows the firm’s intention to launch on Monday, October 18 on NYSE Arca.

Bitcoin’s Price Spikes as Strong Signals Suggest Bitcoin Futures ETF Could Launch Next Week

The crypto community watched the price of bitcoin (BTC) jump awfully close to the crypto asset’s all-time high on Friday afternoon. During the late afternoon trading sessions, BTC tapped a daily high of $62,945 per unit at around 5:30 p.m. (EST). The reason for this increase is likely due to a number of documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) seeming to strongly indicate a bitcoin ETF is launching soon.

The first signal was from James Seyffart, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence who tweeted about Bloomberg’s data team “adding the Proshares Bitcoin Strategy ETF to the terminal.” Seyffart further added: “[The] ticker will be $BITO. 95 bps — less than half $GBTC’s 2% fee. This thing is going live next week. Either Monday or Tuesday.” Sharing this Form 8A document, the Bloomberg Intelligence analyst continued:

Also should add that [Valkyrie Funds] has filed their 8A which essentially registers a security for trading on [an] exchange. Nothing from Proshares on that front yet. So Valkyrie [is almost] certainly going to begin trading next week as well if I had to guess.

Proshares Trust Post-Effective Amended Prospectus

In addition to Seyffart’s commentary on Twitter, Proshares filed a post-effective amended prospectus for its ETF on Friday. The amended documents note that the Proshares bitcoin ETF intends to launch on October 18, 2021, and the filing also notes the ticker will be called “$BITO.” While the Proshares ETF could be the first to be listed as an approved bitcoin ETF by U.S. regulators, it will deal with bitcoin derivatives.

The Proshares ETF will be a bitcoin futures-based product and analysts are doubtful a BTC spot market ETF will get the green light by the SEC this year. There’s been a lot of confusion about whether the SEC actually approved a bitcoin ETF on October 15 and there’s speculation signals could change. Seyffart’s Friday afternoon commentary on Twitter also shares a tweet he wrote on October 8 when he stated:

The SEC has pulled the rug on approval so many times before, I can’t help but wonder what’s around the corner. We (and all the potential issuers) are basically Charlie Brown trying to kick a football.

Speculation Concerning Valkyrie ETF

People are still skeptical because the U.S. regulator has rejected bitcoin ETFs in a vocal manner, but hasn’t said anything officially about approving a crypto exchange-traded fund. Others have also shared documents concerning Valkyrie’s bitcoin exchange-traded fund, as many have been speculating about its approval.

Still, a few individuals have said the 8A document concerning Valkyrie’s Bitcoin Strategy ETF does not necessarily mean guaranteed approval.

“The SEC has not approved Valkyrie’s Bitcoin Strategy ETF…yet,” the Twitter account Bitcoin Archive told its 539,600 followers. “This is a notice from Nasdaq to the SEC saying they have approved the securities and awaiting a decision from the SEC. That is all.”

Vaneck’s Gabor Gurbacs responded to Bitcoin Archive’s tweet and said: “Good catch. There are so many approvals so people no longer [know] when an actual approval is. LOL.” Bitcoin Archive replied to the Vaneck executive and said: “Bloomberg guys think it’s 99% certain Mon/Tue, but we don’t have confirmation until [the] SEC says so.”

What do you think about the new SEC filings that give the impression the U.S. regulator approved a bitcoin futures-based ETF? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

CFTC Fines Stablecoin Issuer Tether and Crypto Exchange Bitfinex $42.5 Million

CFTC Fines Stablecoin Issuer Tether and Crypto Exchange Bitfinex $42.5 Million

On Friday, October 15, 2021, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced that it had ordered the company Tether Holdings Limited and Ifinex Inc., the parent company of Bitfinex, to pay fines totaling $42.5 million. The CFTC accuses Tether of “making untrue or misleading statements and omissions of material fact in connection with the U.S. dollar tether token (USDT) stablecoin.”

CFTC Issues Two Fines to Tether and Bitfinex, CFTC Expects ‘Honesty and Transparency in the Developing Digital Assets Marketplace’

The stablecoin issuer Tether and Ifinex have been charged by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the two firms have been ordered to pay $42.5 million. Tether is accused of “making untrue or misleading statements and omissions” in regards to the stablecoin the firm issues.

The U.S. regulator also claims that the crypto exchange Bitfinex “engaged in illegal, off-exchange retail commodity transactions in digital assets with U.S persons on the Bitfinex trading platform and operated as a futures commission merchant (FCM) without registering as required.”

“This case highlights the expectation of honesty and transparency in the rapidly growing and developing digital assets marketplace,” the acting CFTC chairman Rostin Behnam explained on Friday. “The CFTC will continue to take decisive action to bring to light untrue or misleading statements that impact CFTC jurisdictional markets.”

In the past, Tether and Bitfinex had issues with the New York Attorney General’s Office (NYAG), but reached a settlement this year. At the time, New York Attorney General Letitia James declared in a statement:

Bitfinex and Tether recklessly and unlawfully covered-up massive financial losses to keep their scheme going and protect their bottom lines. Tether’s claims that its virtual currency was fully backed by U.S. dollars at all times was a lie. These companies obscured the true risk investors faced and were operated by unlicensed and unregulated individuals and entities dealing in the darkest corners of the financial system.

CFTC’s Acting Director of Enforcement Says Regulation Is Meant to ‘Promote Market Integrity and Protect US Customers’

Bitfinex and Tether eventually settled with the NYAG in late February 2021, and the firms had to pay an $18.5 million fine. The acting director of CFTC enforcement, Vincent McGonagle, says the latest news concerning the CFTC’s fines against the two crypto companies shows the regulator is committed to promoting integrity.

“As demonstrated by today’s actions against Tether and Bitfinex, the CFTC is committed to carrying out its statutory charge to promote market integrity and protect U.S. customers,” McGonagle said in a press statement. The CFTC’s acting director of enforcement further added:

The CFTC will use its strong anti-fraud enforcement authority over commodities, including digital assets, when necessary. The CFTC will also act to ensure that certain margined, leveraged or financed digital asset trading offered to retail U.S. customers must occur on properly registered and regulated exchanges. Moreover, as the Bitfinex order reflects, the CFTC will take decisive action against those who choose to violate CFTC orders.

Meanwhile, crypto markets have been enthralled by the rumors of a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) getting the green light from regulators. So much so that crypto markets did not even flinch when the CFTC’s news about Tether and Bitfinex dropped on Friday afternoon.

In a concurring statement, CFTC commissioner Dawn D. Stump said: “I agree with the Commission’s findings” concerning the fines against Tether and Bitfinex. “The settlement with the Tether respondents finds that there were misrepresentations regarding the assets backing tether, specifically that the USDT tokens were backed 1-to-1 by US dollars. The evidence establishes that this assurance provided to tether customers was not 100% true, 100% of the time. When reviewing this record, it is clear to me that wrongdoing occurred, and that someone should be held accountable,” Stump added.

What do you think about the CFTC fining Tether and Bitfinex $42.5 million? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Bitcoin Price Smashes $61.7K High — Leading Crypto Asset Needs to Gain Over 5% to Reach ATH

Bitcoin Price Smashes $61.7K High — Leading Crypto Asset Needs to Gain Over 5% to Reach ATH

The price of bitcoin has continued to push toward higher prices as the leading crypto asset has tapped a high of $61,749 per unit on Friday. The crypto asset came awfully close (around 5.3% away) from tapping the all-time price high reached six months ago on April 14.

Bitcoin’s Bull Market Rampage Continues

Bitcoin (BTC) has done phenomenally well during the last two weeks as October has been a good month for the leading crypto asset. On October 15, 2021, BTC tapped a high of $61,430 per unit. The crypto asset is very close to reaching its all-time high of $64,804 per unit captured six months ago.

BTC’s market valuation this Friday is coasting along at $1.15 trillion and bitcoin is currently the eighth-most valuable asset worldwide. BTC market dominance has increased to 44.57% while ethereum (ETH) dominance stands at 17.6%.

Metrics show out of the $156 billion in global trading volume between all the coins in existence, BTC commands $46.5 billion of those trades. Tether (USDT) captures 55.9% of today’s BTC trades, followed by USD (16.28%), BUSD (5.44%), JPY (4.12%), EUR (3.77%), and KRW (2.72%).

Analysts Assume Spike Is Due to Rumors That a US Bitcoin ETF Will Be Approved

In a note sent to Bitcoin.com News, Etoro’s crypto asset analyst Simon Peters says that the spike is likely due to expectations of a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) approval. “After a week of building expectations and momentum, bitcoin has hit $60k again for the first time in almost six months,” Peters said.

“Today’s spike appears to have been triggered by investors’ growing confidence that US regulators will approve the launch of an ETF based on bitcoin futures contracts – but a rise past $60,000 has been looking likely for a while now after weeks of positive net inflows into bitcoin from institutional investors, a growing migration of bitcoin from short-term holders to long-term holders, and the attendant squeeze on bitcoin supply,” the Etoro crypto asset analyst added.

Mikkel Morch, the executive director and risk management at crypto/digital assets hedge fund ARK36, says the price increase is clearly due to the rumors that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is planning to approve a bitcoin ETF. “It is clear that the recent spike in BTC’s price is directly related to the rumour that the SEC will move ahead with the US first Bitcoin ETF approval,” Morch said on Friday.

“It is becoming increasingly likely that at least one of the major contenders for a BTC futures ETF, such as Valkyrie or Vaneck, could be approved in the coming days and ahead of SEC’s hard November deadlines,” Morch continued. “As Valkyrie Investments updated its futures-backed ETF prospectus with the ticker BTF on Wednesday, the company is thought to have the biggest chances of winning this race,” the ARK36 executive added.

What do you think about bitcoin skyrocketing to new heights on Friday? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Coingecko Publishes Q3 Crypto Report — BTC Outperformed Every Major Asset Class, Altcoins Decouple

Coingecko Publishes Q3 Crypto Report — BTC Outperformed Every Major Asset Class, Altcoins Decouple

On Thursday, the crypto asset aggregation portal Coingecko published the firm’s 2021 third-quarter report which shows a number of different findings. According to the study, for the most part, the crypto economy recovered from the market downturn in May as the top 30 market caps grew by 31% in Q3. The report shows that altcoins continue to decouple (specifically those from alternative chains) and the leading stablecoin tether has been losing its share “as the preferred stablecoin.”

2021 Q3 Cryptocurrency Report Observes the Crypto Landscape and Bitcoin’s Third-Quarter Market Performance

This week Coingecko’s analysts and founders’ Bobby Ong and TM Lee published the firm’s 2021 Q3 Cryptocurrency Report which observes the crypto economy’s third quarter. The study delves into a myriad of subjects including decentralized finance (defi), non-fungible token (NFT) assets, and Q3 crypto market performances. In the founder’s note section of the report, Ong and Lee explain that “NFTs are redefining value and culture.”

“​​NFTs are here to stay and have proven themselves to be the gateway drug for mainstream adoption. We have been big fans of NFTs since learning about them in 2016,” the Coingecko founders detail.

Coingecko Publishes Q3 Crypto Report — BTC Outperformed Every Major Asset Class, Altcoins Decouple

Furthermore, the report discusses bitcoin (BTC) at great length and notes that the leading crypto asset saw an increased Q3 price return of around 25%. “Bitcoin ended Q3 2021 at $43,859, a 25% increase quarter-on-quarter and had consolidated since its retracement from Q3’s peak,” the report details. However, at the same time, the Coingecko research finds there was an increase in altcoin dominance.

Coingecko Publishes Q3 Crypto Report — BTC Outperformed Every Major Asset Class, Altcoins Decouple

“Altcoins’ dominance [continued] to outperform Bitcoin’s which declined by as much as 4.5%, signifying the growing sentiment that altcoins are decoupling from Bitcoin. The exceptions, however, are Cardano and Tether. Tether marked the biggest decline with a 15.7% drop,” the researchers add. Stablecoins that increased in dominance include USDC, BUSD, DAI, and UST.

Strong Hashrate Recovery, Bitcoin Outperforms Traditional Assets and Indices

The 40-page report explains that the BTC hashrate increased 54% in the third quarter and the research emphasizes the bitcoin mining crackdown that took place in China. “The strong hashrate recovery may be linked to the great miner migration from China to the rest of the world,” Coingecko’s report details.

Coingecko Publishes Q3 Crypto Report — BTC Outperformed Every Major Asset Class, Altcoins Decouple

The report coincides with new data from Cambridge University’s Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) project, which shows that a great number of mining operations now reside in the U.S. During the third quarter, Coingecko researchers note that bitcoin (BTC) has “climbed 25% and outperformed all other major asset classes.” “All major asset classes and indices performed worse in Q3 2021 relative to Q3 2020 except for DXY and the Nasdaq index,” the study’s researchers noted.

The research dives into other metrics as well, and in Q3 2021, public companies controlled around 1.11% of the entire BTC supply. Additionally, the report notes that BTC’s market valuation is 13.5X away from surpassing gold’s overall market capitalization.

Since Coingecko’s Q3 2021 report was published, bitcoin (BTC) has increased a great deal in value. For instance, the day before the report was published BTC was swapping for $54,887 per unit and today the crypto asset is exchanging hands for above $61.2K per BTC. That’s an increase of 11.59% during the last two days.

What do you think about Coingecko’s 2021 third quarter crypto-asset report? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Bitcoin Is Now World’s 8th Most Valuable Asset — BTC Now Targets Silver’s $1.31T Market Cap

The price of bitcoin had crossed the $60K zone at 1:30 a.m. (EST) early Friday morning. The leading crypto asset’s latest price jump has made it so bitcoin’s overall market valuation of $1.119 trillion has surpassed Facebook’s market capitalization. The digital asset is also nearing the entire net worth of all the silver in the world as bitcoin is 17.3% away from surpassing the precious metal’s overall capitalization.

Bitcoin Surpasses Facebook’s Overall Worth, Needs to Gain More Than 17.33% to Exceed Silver

Bitcoin is currently the eighth-most valuable asset in the world just above the market valuation of the corporate entity Facebook’s market cap. Today, statistics from the website companiesmarketcap.com indicate that BTC’s market cap is $1.119 trillion and Facebook’s market valuation is $926.27 billion. It’s not the first time bitcoin (BTC) surpassed the social media company’s entire value, as Bitcoin.com News reported that BTC grew larger than Facebook during the first week of January this year.

Interestingly, at that time, BTC was only changing hands for $41,462 per unit while Facebook’s market cap was $758 billion. Today, both BTC’s and Facebook’s market caps are higher and Facebook is valued at $926.27 billion. Alongside this, in January 2021, BTC still had yet to surpass Tesla, but today’s market valuations show BTC is two spots ahead of the electric car manufacturer. BTC is also ahead of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) as the overall worth of BRK-A shares is $636.97 billion on Friday.

The next asset BTC needs to surpass is silver (Ag) as all the silver in the world today is estimated to be worth $1.313 trillion. BTC’s $1.119 trillion valuation needs to exceed 17.33% in order to get past the overall net worth of the global silver supply. In addition to silver, gold (Au), Apple, Microsoft, Saudi Aramco, Alphabet (Google), and Amazon are ahead of BTC as well. BTC has a long way to go to outpace the top precious metal, Au, as it must gain more than 905% just to outperform gold’s global worth.

Bitcoin Needs 112% Gains to Beat Apple If Bitcoin Surpasses Apple Satoshi Will Be the World’s Wealthiest Individual

In order to beat the second most valuable global asset, Apple (AAPL), the leading crypto-asset must exceed gains of more than 112.3%. At that point, BTC would be the second-most valuable asset worldwide. In order for BTC to overtake AAPL’s overall market valuation, the crypto would need to be valued at $125,257 per unit. Of course, that $125K estimate is based on the number of BTC in circulation today and by then more bitcoins will be issued which means the $125K estimate would likely be lower.

With Friday’s current 18,844,512 circulating supply of BTC in existence, in order to beat gold, each bitcoin would have to be worth $619,500. Another interesting fact is that if BTC ever surpasses Apple and comes close to the overall market valuation of gold, Bitcoin’s unknown inventor will be the world’s richest person (or group).

What do you think about bitcoin as the world’s eighth most valuable asset and how the crypto recently surpassed social media giant, Facebook? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Deep Web Confusion: Ostensible Alphabay Admin ‘Desnake’ Claims the Darknet Market Has Returned

Deep Web Confusion: Ostensible Alphabay Admin 'Desnake' Claims the Darknet Market Has Returned

In mid-July 2017, the largest darknet marketplace (DNM) Alphabay went dark and patrons didn’t know if the administrators were busted by law enforcement or if it was an exit scam. Not too long after the site went dark, law enforcement disclosed that an organized police task force, from various jurisdictions, infiltrated Alphabay alongside the DNM Hansa. Thailand police also arrested Alexandre Cazes, the alleged administrator for the Alphabay marketplace. Now over four years later, Alphabay (AB) has allegedly returned as the original AB admin “Desnake” has ostensibly ‘proven control’ over the AB administrators’ PGP key.

The So-Called Return of the Alphabay, New Platform Unstable, Veracity of Desnake’s PGP Key Questionable

During the last few weeks, darknet marketplace (DNM) users, researchers, and observers have been discussing the so-called return of the Alphabay (AB) marketplace. The DNM was the largest darknet market in 2017, and before the publication Deepdotweb was seized, it had shown that AB had a 96% approval rating. When the site went dark that summer four years ago, thousands of AB users flocked to both Hansa and Dream DNMs. Little did Hansa users know the market had been seized by international law enforcement.

Netherlands Police and the Public Prosecutor’s Office dismantled Hansa in early June and basically operated the DNM, while users flocked to Hansa after AB went down. While operating Hansa, law enforcement collected lots of information on vendors and frequent patrons who leveraged the DNM and seized thousands of bitcoins. Then there was the so-called AB Kingpin Alexandre Cazes who was arrested by Thailand police. It was assumed, that Cazes was or played the role of the AB administrator dubbed “Desnake.” However, Cazes was found dead in his cell after his arrest in Thailand.

Fast forward to today, Hansa is gone and the DNM Dream’s administrators decided to close down the shop. In August 2021, visitors who utilize the Dread forum noted the appearance of “Desnake” resurfacing. Desnake also ostensibly proved its identity by leveraging the account’s historical PGP key. Reportedly, a former AB moderator called “disc0” vouched for Desnake as well. The researchers at darkowl.com published an in-depth report of findings tied to the alleged Desnake’s return and how the user promoted the newly launched Alphabay DNM “with services hosted on both Tor and I2P.”

Darkowl notes that the new AB has been “unstable” since it returned, and users experience “frequent 503 errors, user registration issues, and login timeouts.” I2P services tethered to the new AB rarely loads and Darkowl claims the AB user base is much smaller than what Desnake has been boasting.

“Desnake claims there have been 15,000 user accounts created, 450 vendors registered, and over 400 listings published as of the time of writing,” Darkowl’s report finds.

Darkowl Report Says New Alphabay Moderators Speak With ‘Impeccable English,’ Deep Web and Tor Researcher Dark.Fail Comments the Alleged Return

Darkowl researchers also suspect that it is possible the AB service on Tor is hosted “alongside Dread services.” This is because the newly launched AB features similar DDoS protection and clock-captcha services as Dread. The in-depth findings Darkowl discovers further show the new AB marketplace is moderated by three individuals dubbed: “TheCypriot,” “tempest,” and “wxmaz.”

“All of the moderators speak very formally with impeccable English and gush with unbridled passion about the need for a new concept of decentralized marketplaces, the complex tradeoffs and advantages of peer-to-peer networks, and a deep desire to establish a greater sense of community,” Darkowl’s report notes. “Desnake’s posts are particularly “wordy” with extensive lengthy posts on Dread and the market’s About and FAQ section,” the report adds.

In addition to Darkowl’s report, the anonymous journalist and researcher known as “dark.fail” (@darkdotfail) tweeted about the return of the so-called Alphabay and gave a warning. “Alphabay, a #1 darknet market seized by law enforcement four years ago, recently returned,” dark.fail said on Thursday. “Desnake proved their control of [an] old PGP key, an original site admin. Many naive people are trusting it. We’ll see how this plays out. [Law enforcement] can seize PGP private keys just like anything else,” the researcher added.

The ostensible return of AB follows the recent White House marketplace retirement announcement which stresses that another White House marketplace will not return in the future. Oftentimes, malicious entities like to create phony DNMs with the names of legendary markets in order to gain more trust from the community. White House was a monero (XMR)-only accepting DNM, and screenshots indicate that the new Alphabay features monero acceptance as well.

Moreover, what if law enforcement (LE) officials are using the AB PGP keys to lure in unsuspecting victims in a similar fashion to the way Hansa was seized? There are many instances throughout history that show global LE has worked undercover to catch bigger fish. In the Hansa case, Dutch LE officers with partners from Germany, Lithuania, the U.S., and Europol infiltrated Hansa from the inside for more than a month collecting information on every participant.

“A total of more than 1,000 bitcoins have been seized,” the Netherlands prosecutor’s office detailed. “On average, 1000 orders were made per day in response to some 40,000 ads. The marketplace counted 1,765 different sellers. Since the acquisition of Hansa Market’s management, more than 50,000 transactions have been counted, especially for soft and hard drugs.”

What do you think about the so-called return of Alphabay and the veracity of the Desnake PGP key? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

A Look at How Buckminster Fuller Predicted Bitcoin: ‘A Realistic, Scientific Accounting System of What Is Wealth’

A Look at How Buckminster Fuller Predicted Bitcoin: 'A Realistic, Scientific Accounting System of What Is Wealth'

Richard Buckminster Fuller was a well known American architect, systems theorist, author, and inventor. Similar to the visions expressed by the industrialist Henry Ford, the Nobel laureate Friedrich Hayek, and Austrian economist Milton Friedman, Buckminster Fuller also predicted a concept that resembled Satoshi Nakamoto’s Bitcoin invention 54 years ago in 1967.

Buckminster Fuller: ‘Build a New Model That Makes the Existing Model Obsolete’

In a recent editorial, Bitcoin.com News discussed how the famed industrialist Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, envisaged an idea that’s similar to Bitcoin roughly 100 years ago. It was further said that before cypherpunks like Timothy May and Eric Hughes wrote about digital cash, Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman also predicted a technology that would operate similarly to Satoshi’s Bitcoin project. Buckminster Fuller was another intelligent individual who predicted the invention of cryptocurrencies and new wealth.

Fuller was not a fan of the financial system years before his passing on July 1, 1983. People referred to Fuller as the “grandfather of the future,” and the systems theorist often said: “God wanted all humans to be rich.” In a video interview with Fuller in 1967, the inventor talks about a new currency that will spark a new movement of wealth by 2018.

“I’ll have to talk about something which will be one of the very big, new realizations by 2000 AD,” Fuller said in the interview. “A realistic — scientific accounting system — of what is wealth … wealth isn’t the gold that the old pirates used to have — wealth is energy,” he added.

Rich Dad Poor Dad Author Robert Kiyosaki Believes Buckminster Fuller Predicted Blockchain Technology

Robert Kiyosaki, the best-selling author of “Rich Dad Poor Dad,” wrote about Fuller predicting the coming of bitcoin back in 1967 as well. Kiyosaki and a friend went to see Fuller speak at the Montreal, Canada Expo Center to see Fuller’s geodesic dome. In 1981, Kiyosaki was invited to “spend a week studying with Dr. Fuller at a lodge outside of Lake Tahoe.” The best-selling author stressed:

I believe that what Fuller predicted was the blockchain technology upon which cryptocurrencies are built.

Kiyosaki details and quotes Fuller on several occasions throughout his memoirs remembering the famed inventor. The “Rich Dad Poor Dad” author explained that decades before Satoshi Nakamoto dropped Bitcoin on the world, Fuller envisioned a “complete reengineering of the global economy facilitated by a synchronized accounting system integrated with a global energy network.” Kiyosaki emphasized that Fuller’s forecast said that the U.S. dollar would be “replaced with a new money—a money made of energy by energy.”

Published in 1981, alongside Fuller’s “Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth,” the book “Critical Path” is considered one of Fuller’s best-known works. In the book, Fuller says: “Computers make it practical to electronify wealth distribution games that accomplish the movement of goods in services in more channeled, designed structures. Not big brother though, since no central planning authority—just lots of dial-in ‘games’ with costs and rewards, likely to attract those with a self-interest in playing.”

Author Garrison Breckenridge also highlights in his editorial called “What Blockchain Can Learn from One Man’s Attempt to Save the World” how Fuller envisioned Satoshi’s technological breakthrough. It’s well known that Fuller was a man who thought outside the box when it comes to changes and technological inventions. The systems theorist and author knew quite well that the old systems of finance and governance were antiquated and could not be fixed by fighting the status quo’s current infrastructure. Fuller is famously quoted for saying:

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.

What do you think about Buckminster Fuller predicting bitcoin back in 1967? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Studio 54 Reveals Never-Before-Seen Photograph and Pixel Art NFTs of the Famed Disco Club

Studio 54 Reveals Never-Before-Seen Photograph and Pixel Art NFTs of the Famed Disco Club

Superrare Labs has revealed the first-ever non-fungible token (NFT) drop crafted by the renowned photographer Bill Bernstein and the legendary Studio 54. The NFT drop features the nightlife photographs taken by Bernstein from the iconic Studio 54 and Paradise Garage. Additionally, Superrare has also unveiled NFT collectibles that showcase 8-bit animations of Studio 54 and music from Jitwam, Teymori, and Studio 54 Music.

Studio 54 Lights Up the Nightlife With NFT Photos From the Iconic Disco Club and Paradise Garage

44 years ago, Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager opened a nightclub called Studio 54, launched during the peak of America’s disco trend. In a matter of no time, the club became world-famous and stars like Woody Allen, Betty Ford, Calvin Klein, Timothy Leary, Farrah Fawcett, Liza Minnelli, David Bowie, Cher, Rick James, and Mick Jagger regularly attended.

The club itself has closed and in 2020, the company expanded into a record label called Studio 54 Music and has a radio station on Sirius XM called Studio 54 Radio. Now the team behind Studio 54 has teamed up with non-fungible token (NFT) collectible marketplace Superrare and has released a number of unique NFTs. The first drop started with Superrare unveiling four photographs crafted by the renowned photographer Bill Bernstein.

In 1977, the Village Voice sent the freelance photographer Bernstein to take candid photos of Studio 54’s trends. “The four works include digitized film photographs, collages, mixed media slide-shows, and contact sheets highlighting outtakes which have never been seen before,” the Superrare announcement details. “Giving more context into the golden era of disco + New York City scene between 1977-1981.”

Studio 54 Drops ‘Accurate Pixel Art Animations of Inside the Famed Disco Club’

Additionally, Studio 54 and Superrare have launched NFT 8-bit video game animations of the world-famous disco club with special music. The NFTs are considered “accurate pixel art animations of inside the famed disco club.” The music tied to the NFT collectibles stems from two releases of Studio 54’s official record label, Studio 54 Music. “‘Night Magic Vol. I;’ an EP of Studio 54 anthems reimagined and led in the studio by modern New York City disco mavens [and] ‘Help Yo Self;’ a maxi-single by emerging dance music players Jitwam and Teymori.”

Statements sent to Bitcoin.com News from the Studio 54 team emphasized that a portion of the proceeds from Bill Bernstein’s NFT sales will go toward the Marsha P. Johnson Institute. A portion of the proceeds from the NFT 8-bit video game animations will benefit the Sound Mind Live (SML) charity. SML’s mission aims to “bring together musicians, music lovers, and forward-thinking organizations to build community and open dialogue around mental health – leveraging the power of music to catalyze social change.”

What do you think about Studio 54’s non-fungible token (NFT) collectibles? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Fox Entertainment’s Blockchain Arm Drops NFT Market Dedicated to Hit TV Series The Masked Singer

Fox Entertainment's Blockchain Arm Drops NFT Market Dedicated to Hit TV Series The Masked Singer

Fox Entertainment and Blockchain Creative Labs (BCL) has announced the launch of maskverse.com, a non-fungible token marketplace and community dedicated to the entertainment series and hit singing competition “The Masked Singer.” According to Fox and BCL, the NFT marketplace and a game will be powered by the Eluvio blockchain.

Fox, Blockchain Creative Labs, Eluvio Introduce The Masked Singer NFT Marketplace

In mid-May, Fox Broadcasting Company, the American commercial broadcast television network, announced it was launching a non-fungible token (NFT) business called Blockchain Creative Labs. In June, Fox detailed that it had teamed up with Bento Box Entertainment (BBE) and initiated a $100 million fund aimed at empowering NFT content creators.

Now the broadcasting and entertainment company is unveiling an NFT ecosystem dedicated to the popular singing competition show “The Masked Singer.” Fox and BCL launched maskverse.com, which allows fans of “The Masked Singer” (TMS) to “build their own collection of limited-edition digital masks for every character from all six seasons of the series to unlock surprises and exclusive giveaways.”

TMS is a series that premiered on the Fox television network on January 2, 2019. The U.S. version, hosted by Nick Cannon, is based on the original that started in South Korea. The series features well known individuals, professional athletes, and celebrities wearing costumes and masks to hide their identities.

The show also stars Ken Jeong, Jenny McCarthy Wahlberg, Nicole Scherzinger, and Robin Thicke. During the first and second years of production, Adweek said the show was the “Hottest Reality/Competition Series” in the United States. When the third season of TMS appeared, it was the series most-watched episode, and TMS ratings soared after the onset of the coronavirus pandemic as well.

‘Miss Masky’ and ‘Mask Packs’

The NFT drop on maskverse.com begins on October 13 at 5:30 p.m. (EST) and there will be multiple stages, according to statements sent to Bitcoin.com News. The first part will see fans getting a free NFT of “Miss Masky” as they create a digital media wallet, through Eluvio.

The announcement further details that throughout the season, maskverse.com visitors will be able to obtain “Mask Packs” that include character cards from TMS and “will unlock a marketplace for fans to purchase and sell cards to complete their sets, as well as additional premium and unique digital merchandise.”

What do you think about Fox and Blockchain Creative Labs dropping “The Masked Singer” NFTs and marketplace? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

St. Louis Fed’s James Bullard Would ‘Support Starting the Taper in November’ to React to Inflation

St. Louis Fed's James Bullard Would 'Support Starting the Taper in November' to React to Inflation

St. Louis Federal Reserve president James Bullard told the press on Tuesday that he thinks the U.S. central bank needs to wind down the buying of $80 billion worth of monthly bond purchases. Bullard says he would support tapering starting as early as November, in order to “react to possible upside risks to inflation next year.”

St. Louis Fed President Has Been ‘Advocating Trying to Get Finished With the Taper Process’

On Tuesday, Bitcoin.com News reported on the rising concerns over inflation as the Federal Reserve’s latest Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) report explained U.S. households believe inflation will be higher a year from now. It’s been more than 20 months since the U.S. central bank started its massive quantitative easing (QE) programs to combat the disastrous economic consequences of government-ordered lockdowns and supply chain shutdowns.

The government and Federal Reserve bailed out major businesses and sent stimulus payments directly to American taxpayers as unemployment skyrocketed and people could not pay their bills. The U.S. government also made it so landlords across the nation could not evict tenants because of an enforced eviction moratorium. In addition to all these swirling problems, inflation has reared its ugly head into the wallets of every American citizen.

Currently, the U.S. central bank participates in purchasing $80 billion of bonds and Treasury bills, and $40 billion of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) per month. Meanwhile, on the same day as our report on inflation, St. Louis Federal Reserve president James Bullard discussed inflation and tapering back QE in a recent CNBC interview. “I’d support starting the taper in November,” Bullard remarked in his interview on the show called “Closing Bell.” Bullard further stressed:

I’ve been advocating trying to get finished with the taper process by the end of the first quarter next year because I want to be in a position to react to possible upside risks to inflation next year as we try to move out of this pandemic.

Bullard: ‘I Just Want to Be in a Position in Case We Have to Move Sooner’

Meanwhile, Bullard’s tapering statements follow the inquisition into the stocks owned by Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren, Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan, and even the chairman Jerome Powell. Bullard can likely deflect from that ethics inquisition spurred by U.S. senator Elizabeth Warren as Reuter’s reporter Howard Schneider says the St. Louis Fed branch president’s holdings are small. “James Bullard’s holdings are modest enough that he handwrites his ethics form,” Schneider writes.

As far as tapering is concerned, Bullard faces more hawkish Fed members who may not agree with tapering so soon. The critic Sven Henrich from northmantrader.com isn’t buying all the Fed talk about inflation being “transitory.” “Before you know it, transitory will be replaced with the new normal,” Henrich tweeted on Wednesday.

“The combined assets of the Fed and Blackrock alone equate 82% the size of the entire U.S. economy,” Henrich said a couple of hours later in another tweet. “Add Vanguard with another $7 trillion and you’re looking at 115% of GDP. Fidelity adds another $4 trillion+ for a 134% of GDP total,” Henrich added.

Bullard explained on CNBC’s “Closing Bell” that a commitment doesn’t have to be made just yet but he wants to be prepared. “There’s no reason for us to commit one way or another at this point,” Bullard concluded. “I just want to be in a position in case we have to move sooner than we’re able to do so next year in the spring or summer if we have to do so.”

What do you think about St. Louis Federal Reserve president James Bullard’s statements on tapering back QE? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Defi and Algorithmic Stablecoin Demand Grows in 2021 Despite Large Centralized Competitors

Defi and Algorithmic Stablecoin Demand Grows in 2021 Despite Large Centralized Competitors

On Wednesday, October 13, 2021, the market capitalization of all the stablecoins in existence is around $134 billion, which is 5.60% of the entire $2.4 trillion crypto economy. While centralized stablecoin projects dominate the pack of dollar-pegged tokens, a great number of decentralized stablecoins have been moving in on these centralized competitors. Algorithmic or defi-styled stablecoin market caps have accrued billions of dollars this past year.

While Tether and USD Coin Eclipse the Market, Algorithmic Defi Stablecoins Still Shine

Tether (USDT) is one of the oldest and the largest stablecoins by market cap today, while the second-largest stablecoin valuation belongs to usd coin (USDC). Data from Coingecko’s stablecoin-by-market-cap metrics indicates that on October 13, there’s $134 billion in stablecoin assets. A great majority of those funds belong to tether and usd coin as USDT has a market cap of around $70.9 billion and USDC commands $33.3 billion.

Despite controversial discussions concerning the backings of some of these large stablecoin markets, they are the market leaders when it comes to dollar-pegged tokens. Both USDT and USDC combined make up ​​77.61% of the $134 billion stablecoin economy that exists today. However, decentralized competitors that back their own stablecoins in a myriad of different ways, have started to see their market caps swell.

For instance, the stablecoin DAI has been the most popular decentralized stablecoin and the asset is backed by over-collateralization via the Makerdao project. The stablecoin DAI also commands the fourth-largest market valuation just under Binance’s BUSD stablecoin. DAI’s market cap on October 13, is $6.7 billion and the crypto asset has seen $343 million in 24-hour trade volume on Wednesday. DAI is considered an algorithmic stablecoin that is tied to the value of the U.S. dollar.

Terra USD, Magic Internet Money, Liquidity USD, FEI Rise Below Makerdao’s Algorithmic Stablecoin

Terra usd (UST) is also an algorithmic stablecoin and its market cap is below DAI’s with $2.7 billion today. UST is followed by another decentralized stablecoin called magic internet money (MIM) which holds a $1.5 billion market valuation on Wednesday. The most active trading platform today swapping MIM tokens is the decentralized exchange (dex) Trader Joe. Similar to other decentralized stablecoin projects, magic internet money is issued by users of the lending protocol abracadabra.money.

The ninth-largest stablecoin cap held by liquidity usd (LUSD) is around $658 million today and Uniswap V3 is the stablecoin’s most active exchange. LUSD is issued by the Liquity Protocol which is another decentralized finance (defi) lending protocol. There’s also the defi stablecoin project called Fei which issues a stablecoin called FEI, like the algorithmic stablecoin DAI. The market cap of FEI on Wednesday is $543 million and it commands $79 million in 24-hour trade volume.

The aforementioned decentralized or algorithmic stablecoins that are not backed by a company providing audits and are produced by the crypto community at large, represent 8.95% of today’s stablecoin market cap. That’s only $12 billion of the $134 billion worth of stablecoins in circulation today. For now and for quite some time, it is very probable that centralized competitors like USDC and USDT will not be displaced. However, many of these algorithmic or defi-styled stablecoins have become top contenders in the market and made their mark without corporate backing and little controversy.

What do you think about the stablecoin market today and the 8.95% of defi and algorithmic stablecoins making headway in the crypto economy in recent times? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Geographic Distribution Data Shows US Takes Leading Bitcoin Mining Position After China’s Crackdown

Geographic Distribution Data Shows US Takes the Leading Bitcoin Mining Position After China’s Crackdown

After China has reigned for a number of consecutive years as the dominant bitcoin mining epicenter of the world, the United States has “taken the leading position in bitcoin mining,” according to new data from Cambridge University.

Data Shows US, Kazakhstan, Russian Federation Rule the Bitcoin Mining Roost

In mid-July, researchers from the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) project published new data from the website’s “Bitcoin Mining Map,” which had not been updated since April 2020. In that specific report, CBECI researchers noted that China’s hashrate dominance was much lower than in previous estimates. On October 13, CBECI researchers published updated data on all the countries participating in bitcoin mining and where most of the mining activity is taking place these days.

“The latest update to the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) has confirmed the impact of the Bitcoin mining crackdown in China,” the report detailed. “[It shows] that the leading share of global Bitcoin network hashrate now sits in the US, followed by Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation.” The CBECI researchers added:

This new data (to the end of August 2021) shows the US with a global hashrate share of 35.4% (up from 16.8% at the end of April), Kazakhstan with 18.1% (up from 8.2%), and the Russian Federation with 11% (up from 6.8%). This confirms the hashrate trajectory identified in the last update (to end April 2021) which showed those three countries were already gaining market share prior to the crackdown in China.

China’s Crackdown ‘Increased Geographic Distribution of Hashrate Across the World’

Since June 28, 2021, the Bitcoin network hashrate climbed 101.44% from 69 exahash per second (EH/s) to today’s 139 EH/s hashpower measurement. Michel Rauchs, digital assets lead at the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, discussed how China’s crackdown helped fuel the shift in global bitcoin mining.

“The immediate effect of the government mandated ban on crypto mining in China was a 38% drop in global network hash rate in June 2021 – which corresponds roughly to China’s share of hashrate before the clampdown, suggesting that Chinese miners ceased operations simultaneously,” Rauchs suggested.

Besides the new top three countries leading the hashpower race, the next largest hashrate shares reside in countries like Canada (9.55%), Ireland (4.68%), Malaysia (4.59%), Germany (4.48%), Iran (3.11%), and Norway (0.58%). CBECI’s report highlights that while the U.S. got some hashrate from fleeing Chinese miners, the crackdown also “increased geographic distribution of hashrate across the world.”

“It is worth noting that the shares for Ireland and Germany are likely due to a growing number of miners rerouting through those countries via VPNs or proxy servers, rather than growing mining activity for which there is little or no evidence,” the CBECI report explains.

What’s also interesting is the fact that at least four out of the five top mining pools today originally stem from China and now many of them operate internationally and in unknown regions. F2pool, formally known as “Discus Fish” started mining bitcoin (BTC) on May 5, 2013, and was originally based in China.

F2pool commands 26.76 EH/s in hashpower and around 19.39% of the global hashrate today. Antpool, owned and operated by Bitmain, also initially came from China and is the second-largest hashing pool on October 13. Antpool captures 16.59% of the global hashrate with its 22.89 EH/s of hashpower. There’s also the top mining pools Viabtc and Poolin, which begs the question:

Where do these mining facilities and pools originate from now?

What do you think about the recently published Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) mining map report? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Cardano Slips to 5th-Largest Crypto Market Position — ADA Down 30% Since All-Time High Last Month

During the second week of October, bitcoin market values have maintained prices between $54K to $57K. Meanwhile, myriad alternative crypto assets have not yet seen the gains the leading crypto asset has enjoyed during the last two weeks. For instance, cardano used to be the third-largest crypto market in terms of valuation, but after losing 4.8% cardano has slid down to the fifth position this past week.

Cardano Drops from 3rd-Largest Crypto Market Cap to 5th-Largest

The digital currency cardano (ADA) has seen some decent gains during the last 12 months as ADA has increased by 1,840.5% year-to-date. Even Kiss frontman Gene Simmons told the world on October 10, why he invested $300K in cardano (ADA) and how it’s paid off for him so far. However, during the last month, ADA is down 18% and 4.8% over the last seven days. ADA’s market cap is not small and just under the stablecoin tether’s (USDT) overall valuation as cardano’s market cap is around $68.1 billion on Wednesday.

ADA markets on Wednesday are seeing around $1.9 billion in global trade volume and the crypto exchange Binance currently captures the top cardano trade volume. Tether (USDT) is the top pair with cardano on Wednesday with 58.58% of all ADA trades. This is followed by BTC (10.91%), USD (5.75%), BUSD (5.61%), and EUR (3.89%). The Korean won commands the sixth-largest position with 3.44% of ADA swaps, while ETH commands around 2.69% of cardano exchanges today.

Cardano Prices Down 30% Since All-Time High

Cardano reached an all-time high on September 2, 2021, reaching $3.09 per unit but is now down more than 30% since that day. ADA is currently swapping for prices just above the $2 handle and the crypto asset binance coin (BNB) now holds the third-largest position in terms of market cap. Despite the dip to the fifth position, cardano still captures 2.86% of the entire $2.386 trillion crypto-economy among 10,000+ digital assets in existence.

ADA needs to gain more than 15% in value in order to contend for the third-largest market position — BNB’s $77.7 billion market valuation. The crypto asset’s market cap, however, is only 2.34% lower than tether’s overall market valuation of $69.8 billion. Moreover, ADA is not the only smart contract crypto that has taken a hit in recent times. Solana (SOL) is down 10% this week, terra (LUNA) slid by 18.7%, and Avalanche (AVAX) lost 14.3% this past week.

What do you think about cardano’s market performance this past month? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

US Inflation Expectations Highest Since 2013, Gas Prices Skyrocket, Supply Chains Buckle

Americans are still concerned about dealing with inflation, as the cost of goods and services has continued to rise significantly in a short period of time. The Federal Reserve has published the latest Survey of Consumer Expectations report and U.S. households believe inflation will be up 5.3% one year from now. In addition to the dreary economic outlook, gas prices across the U.S. have skyrocketed up more than $1 from a year ago.

New York Fed’s Survey of Consumer Expectations Continues to Look Gloomy

After 2020’s massive monetary expansion, in order to help the economy combat the coronavirus outbreak and help facilitate the lockdown orders that subsequently followed, inflation has crept into the wallets of every American.

Month after month, the Federal Reserve has published the central bank’s Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) reports, and every month, inflation expectations jump higher. Once again, the latest Fed SCE report published on Tuesday indicates that Americans are still expecting higher inflation and low purchasing power a year from now.

The inflation expectations have surged to all-time highs and are the highest levels since 2013, with an expectation of 5.3% one year from now. Furthermore, the New York Fed (the branch that publishes the SCE report), once again mentions the coronavirus.

“Median inflation uncertainty – or the uncertainty expressed regarding future inflation outcomes – was unchanged at the short-term horizon and decreased at the medium-term horizon,” the Fed survey highlights. “Both measures are still well above the levels observed before the outbreak of Covid-19.” The recently published Fed SCE report leverages a rotating panel of 1,300 households.

IMF Warns Central Banks Like the Fed to Tighten Monetary Easing Policy

In addition to the SCE report, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has noted, in the world organizations’ quarterly update on global economic conditions, that central banks may need to tighten monetary easing policy. The IMF emphasized countries like the U.S. and the U.K. where “inflation risks are skewed to the upside.”

“While monetary policy can generally look through transitory increases in inflation, central banks should be prepared to act quickly if the risks of rising inflation expectations become more material in this uncharted recovery,” the IMF’s economic counselor and director of research, Gita Gopinath stressed in the report. “Central banks should chart contingent actions, announce clear triggers, and act in line with that communication.”

Supply Chains Buckle, Gas Prices per Gallon $1 Higher Than Last Year

To make matters worse, the U.S. supply chain (and internationally) has been dealing with significant issues and gas prices across the country have risen significantly since last year. The media in the U.S. continues to tell tales of a buckling supply chain and some are blaming supply chain issues on the conflict between the U.S. and China.

Supply chain shortages and rising gas prices have fueled the inflation crisis in the U.S., so much so that doesn’t seem to be ‘transitory.’ Every week, headlines show that “the return of empty shelves” has returned in the United States as well as the United Kingdom. Grocery stores in nearly every state across the U.S. are starting to see empty shelves again.

U.S. gas prices have also risen by $1 since last year and the average price of gas in the U.S. today is $3.25 per gallon. Only eight states in the U.S. have gas for under $3 a gallon.

What do you think about the current inflation woes Americans are dealing with in 2021? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Millions of Wix Merchants Can Now Accept 12 Different Cryptocurrencies

Millions of Wix Merchants Can Now Accept 12 Different Cryptocurrencies

On Tuesday, the Atlanta-based cryptocurrency payments company Bitpay announced the Israeli software company Wix has enabled its Software as a service (SaaS) e-commerce product to accept crypto-asset payments. The integration will allow Wix merchants to accept 12 different cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, dogecoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, litecoin, and stablecoins as well.

SaaS Platform Wix Implements Bitpay Infrastructure So Merchants Can Accept Crypto

Founded in 2006, by the Israeli software engineers Nadav Abrahami, Avishai Abrahami, and Giora Kaplan, the global SaaS platform Wix provides users with the ability to develop both mobile and HTML5 websites without coding experience. On October 12, Wix announced that it would be implementing Bitpay’s cryptocurrency payment processing infrastructure so users can choose it as an option for the Wix e-commerce platform.

Alongside five different stablecoins such as BUSD, DAI, GUSD, USDP, and USDC, Wix Merchant users can also accept bitcoin (BTC), bitcoin cash (BCH), dogecoin (DOGE), ethereum (ETH), litecoin (LTC), wrapped bitcoin (WBTC), and XRP (in specific jurisdictions). Metrics indicate Wix makes about $1 billion in revenue via its product services such as the website builder, business management services, and web hosting.

“Wix is one of the largest and most widely used web development platforms with over 210 million users, so this is another step forward in moving cryptocurrency mainstream,” said Stephen Pair, Bitpay’s CEO in a statement. “Businesses can get to market quickly and capture incremental sales by tapping into the massive trillion-dollar cryptocurrency marketplace,” Pair added.

Wix Executive Notes the Move Gives Merchants a ‘Whole New Market of Customers Who Prefer to Pay With Crypto’

Bitpay has made a number of moves in the industry during the last year with well known firms like Universal Air Travel Plan (UATP), the youth fashion and retail brand Pacsun, Shop.com, Dr. Luke’s music company Prescription Songs, the luxury hotel group The Kessler Collection, Verifone, the pet services platform Wag, the virtual cloud desktop startup Shells, the luxury fashion e-tailer Jomashop, and the leader of collector car, vintage and antique motorcycle, and road art sales Mecum Auctions.

“We’re continuing to integrate with innovative payment partners to offer Wix merchants even more payment options to offer their customers,” Omer Shatzky, the head of billing and payments at the SaaS firm Wix. “With Bitpay, Wix merchants have access to a whole new market of customers who prefer to pay with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and an avenue for their business to tap into the growing cryptocurrency market.”

According to the announcement, in the first stage of the Wix rollout, Wix merchants and their customers will be able to use the Bitpay service in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Canada, Australia, and Brazil.

What do you think about Wix implementing Bitpay’s crypto payment infrastructure so Wix merchants can accept digital assets? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.