“I Won’t Tell You To Short Bitcoin,” says Guggenheim CIO After Capitulating During June Drop

“I Won’t Tell You To Short Bitcoin,” says Guggenheim CIO After Capitulating During June Drop

It looks like Guggenheim Chief Investment Officer Scott Minerd didn’t get his sub $30k bids filled as he revealed this week that he is no longer invested in Bitcoin. In an interview with CNBC he said,

“The one thing I learned as a bond trader years ago, when you don’t understand what’s happening, get out of the market … So discipline tells me now I don’t fully understand this.”

The CIO first came into the limelight when back in December 2020, he said that Bitcoin could hit $400,000 only to increase this target to $600,000 two months later. During this period, BTC went from $20,000 to $60,000.

But in June, when Bitcoin lost more than 50% of its value from May ATH to just under $29k, Miners called for a drop to $15k. Now that Bitcoin is back on the rise, on the way to hitting its ATH as it trades around $64k, Minerd has completely got out.

“We were long going into that, we sold, it pulled back to where I thought it was and really after looking at it thought you know, we gonna probably go lower.”

“Well, we didn’t, so we’re not in.”

The latest euphoria in the crypto market is on the back of the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF making its debut on NYSE to mark the launch of the first Bitcoin ETF in the US. The futures-based ETF will make it easy for institutional investors who want exposure to the cryptocurrency, said Minerd.

Besides crypto assets, crypto-miner stocks are also surging, with Marathon Digital Holdings Inc., Bitfarms Ltd., and Hut 8 Mining Corp., up at least 180% so far this year. Michael Novogratz’s crypto asset manager, Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd. has also doubled in value this year.

According to Minerd, the upward moves in the stocks are “spilling over” into other asset classes, including cryptocurrencies.

“You see bitcoin and what it’s done over the last few weeks. I can’t tell you it’s a value but I won’t tell you that you should short it because you know it’s likely to be higher in the coming months.”

He also said that he still sees the potential for the price of Bitcoin to reach his first target of $400,000 based on its value and scarcity relative to gold.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Minerd also said that the majority of cryptos are worthless and bound to fail. Only a handful of big winners will remain in the end, he added.

“Seventy percent of the coins are garbage and will go away.”

“The question is, just like the internet bubble, which of the companies, survive. Will Amazon be the big winner or will Pets.com be the big winner?”

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Author: AnTy

NYAG Now Goes After Crypto Lenders, Nexo Says It Doesn’t Offer Services In New York Anyway

NYAG Now Goes After Crypto Lenders, Nexo Says It Doesn’t Offer Services In New York Anyway

After settling charges with Tether and Bitfinex for $18.5 million, the New York State Attorney General has now asked two cryptocurrency lending platforms to cease activities in New York. Three other platforms have also been directed to provide information about their business.

In a redacted letter, Letitia James said the Office of the Attorney General “was in possession of evidence of unlawfully selling or offering for sale securities and/or commodities.”

Crypto lending platforms that are interest-bearing accounts offering investors a rate of return on crypto deposits are required to register with the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) if they are operating within the state or offering their products to New Yorkers said James on Monday. She added,

“Cryptocurrency platforms must follow the law, just like everyone else.”

The two companies are reportedly Celcisus and Nexo. Celsius Network is already targeted by Texas, Kentucky, Alabama, and New Jersey regulators for its interest-bearing accounts, which the local regulators allege violate local securities laws.

This month, the company with over 1 million registered users and $25 billion in assets under management raised $400 million from equity firm WestCap and Canada’s second-largest pension fund Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, at a valuation of $3 billion.

Nexo Finance took to Twitter to clarify that it already restricts access to its Nexo Exchange Service and Nexo Earn Interest Product to the citizens or residents of the States of New York, Texas, Kentucky, New Jersey, Alabama, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Washington, as such the letter doesn’t make any sense.

“Nexo is not offering its Earn Product & Exchange in NY so it makes little sense to be receiving a C&D for something we are not offering in NY anyway.” “But we will engage with the NY AG as this is a clear case of mixing up the recipients of the letter. We use IP-based geoblocking.”

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Author: AnTy

Russian President says Cryptocurrency May Become A “Means of Savings” at Some Point

Russian President says Cryptocurrency May Become A “Means of Savings” at Some Point

Vladimir Putin also said cryptocurrencies can also be used as payment though it is still too early to say.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that cryptocurrency can become a settlement unit though it is very unstable and still too early to use for energy.

These positive comments for digital currencies were given by Putin in an interview with CNBC that was posted on the Kremlin’s website Thursday.

Cryptocurrency “has the right to exist and can be used as a means of payment,” said Putin. But he did say that it was too soon to use crypto assets for trading oil and other commodities that make up the bulk of Russia’s exports.

“It’s too early to talk about this issue. Of course, cryptocurrency can become a settlement unit, but it is very unstable. It is possible to transfer funds from one place to another. But I think it’s too early for transactions, especially energy transactions, to use cryptocurrency for settlement.”

Russia, on which the US has imposed sanctions since 2014, has sought alternatives to trading in USD and has accelerated the de-dollarization plans with gold and has also set up an alternative SWIFT System to connect with other countries.

As we reported, Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev said this week that the country has no plans to ban crypto in countries like China.

Meanwhile, the central bank, the Bank of Russia, continues to issue warnings to investors about the crypto market being volatile and digital currencies not allowed to be used as a method of payment domestically. Putin meanwhile emphasized that they will

“pay attention to the development trend of cryptocurrency, which may also become a means of savings at some point. We have seen how the market fluctuates, and it is still early.”

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Author: AnTy

Crypto Regulation Should Be “Pursued As A Matter Of Urgency,” Says BoE Governor

Cryptocurrency Regulation Should Be “Pursued As A Matter Of Urgency,” Says BoE Governor

The collapse of crypto “is certainly a plausible scenario,” says Jon Cunliffe due to “the power of herd behaviour,” as one of the reasons, much like the $1.2 trillion sub-prime market.

Bank of England (BoE) Governor Jon Cunliffe says a collapse in cryptocurrencies is a “plausible scenario” and that it requires rules to regulate the fast-growing sector as a “matter of urgency.”

In a speech to the SIBOS conference on Wednesday, Cunliffe said, while risks to the financial stability from crypto are currently limited, there are a number of “very good reasons” to think this wouldn’t be the case for much longer.

“Regulators internationally and in many jurisdictions have begun the work. It needs to be pursued as a matter of urgency.”

The Governor pointed to the largely unregulated crypto industry growing to become a $2.47 trillion market, with the majority of them not backed by any asset or fiat currency.

“But as the financial crisis showed us, you don’t have to account for a large proportion of the financial sector to trigger financial stability problems,” Cunliffe said, referring to $1.2 trillion of U.S. mortgage market subprime — “a relatively small market” — whose collapse in 2008 reverberated through an unresilient financial system, leading to a global banking crisis.

Now, Cunliffe sees the potential of something like this happening in crypto.

“Such a collapse is certainly a plausible scenario, given the lack of intrinsic value and consequent price volatility, the probability of contagion between crypto assets, the cyber and operational vulnerabilities, and of course, the power of herd behaviour.”

He also pointed to the growing connection between the crypto market and the traditional financial system as hedge funds, banks, and big investors become more involved. Not to mention the recording and transferring ownership of assets is the “bedrock of the financial system’s role in storing value and in making transactions,” which crypto allows without the banks or custodians.

“When something in the financial system is growing very fast, and growing in largely unregulated space, financial stability authorities have to sit up and take notice.”

He also said the unregulated, decentralized finance (DeFi) presents “pronounced” challenges due to the absence of investor protection. The BoE has begun the work on how to manage such risks, he added.

Last week, global regulators proposed applying the same principles to stablecoins followed by banks and payment systems. Cunliffe, who helped lead the work on the safeguards, said it took two years to draft the measure.

“Indeed, bringing the crypto world effectively within the regulatory perimeter will help ensure that the potentially very large benefits of the application of this technology to finance can flourish in a sustainable way.”

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Author: AnTy

Russia has No Plans to Ban Crypto Unlike China, says Deputy Finance Minister

Russia Has No Plans to Ban Cryptocurrencies Unlike China, says Deputy Finance Minister

A Siberian region, which relies heavily on hydroelectric power and is known for its cheap electricity, also saw its energy consumption surging 159% due to an “avalanche” of crypto-mining.

After the US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Gary Gensler clarified in no uncertain terms that they have no plan to ban Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev conveyed the same thoughts.

Moiseev told reporters this week that Russia does not plan to follow the same path as China and introduce a ban on the purchase of crypto by citizens on foreign exchanges, according to a local publication.

“Russian citizens can have a wallet open outside the Russian Federation, but if they operate within the Russian Federation then they will be subject to bans, I think, for the entire foreseeable future, due to our financial sovereignty,” said Moiseev during a “Digitalization of Financial Markets” lecture at MGIMO.

Last month, China strengthened its crackdown on crypto mining and trading; as a result, a flood of Bitcoin miners are now also moving to Russia besides Kazakhstan and the U.S.

A Siberian region, Irkutsk, which relies heavily on hydroelectric power and is known for its cheap electricity, saw retail energy consumption surging 159% this year, from 2020 levels due to an “avalanche” of underground crypto-mining, Governor Igor Kobzev said in a letter to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak.

“The situation is an unpredictable event for the region and is leading to significant loads on the power grid with the risk of accidents and emergencies,” reads the letter, in which Kobzev said the problem has been exacerbated by China’s ban on mining and called for higher electricity rates for miners.

Close Attention on Crypto

While no plans to ban crypto, the digital currency will not be allowed to be used as a means of payment within the country, as this could result in the loss of the government’s control over the money supply, said Deputy Finance Minister.

Moiseev further said that there is a need to define digital currency and blockchain in the country’s Civil Code and in specialized laws.

“The blockchain will obviously occupy its own niche and will be used where equal rights are needed.”

Last week, Anatoly Aksakov, the head of the State Duma Committee on the Financial Market had said that they are keeping “close attention” on the topic of digital assets and thinking about implementing legislative restrictions on the investment of unqualified investors in cryptocurrencies.

These measures, according to him, are necessary to protect private investors as billions of dollars are currently spent on the purchase of digital currency. But while there is a great risk, there is also great profitability, he noted.

“Here, of course, we need to prescribe in the legislation the norms that will protect an unqualified investor in ill-considered investments in digital currencies.”

In July this year, the Central Bank of the Russian Federation issued an information letter recommending Russian exchanges not to admit instruments linked to crypto and advised professional participants in the securities market to refrain from offering their unqualified clients access to crypto and the management company to include them in mutual funds.

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Author: AnTy

$9.5T Asset Manager BlackRock is Studying Crypto, “We Believe That Will Play A Very Large Role”

$9.5 Trillion Asset Manager BlackRock is Studying Crypto, CEO says “We Believe That Will Play A Very Large Role”

Larry Fink, the CEO of the world’s largest asset manager, BlackRock doesn’t understand much about Bitcoin but said he sees huge opportunities in digitized currencies.

“I see huge opportunities in a digitized crypto-blockchain-related currency and that’s where I think it’s going and that’s going to create some big winners and some big losers,” he said during his conversation with CNBC.

But when it comes to the trillion-dollar asset BTC, Fink said he is “not a student of bitcoin” and does not know where it’s going to go.

“I can’t tell you whether it’s going to $80,000 or zero.”

“But I do believe there is a huge role for a digitized currency and I believe that’s going to help consumers worldwide.”

Interestingly, Bitcoin jumped 5% to nearly $57,300 on Wednesday, continuing the green month in which the cryptocurrency is up more than 30%.

When further asked about JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon calling the leading cryptocurrency “worthless,” Fink said he’s “probably more on the Jamie Dimon camp.”

In an interview this week, Dimon said, “(Bitcoin) makes no difference to me” but added, “Our clients are adults. They disagree. That’s what makes markets.”

But that doesn’t mean, the asset manager isn’t interested in the crypto market as on being asked when he has shifted in his view in offering access to crypto to BlackRock investors, Fink said,

“We’re studying blockchain and the whole concept of crypto and we believe that will play a very large role.”

Back in February, BlackRock’s chief investment officer of global fixed income Rick Reider said the firm had “started to dabble” in crypto assets. Then in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) dated July 31 showed that the BlackRock Global Allocation Fund had been trading Bitcoin futures. The asset manager giant has also invested millions in Bitcoin mining companies.

On Wednesday, the New York firm reported a 16% increase in revenue to $5.05 billion while its assets under management jumped 21% to $9.46 trillion, as of Sept. 30 from $7.81 trillion a year earlier.

Earlier this week, at the Institute of International Finance, Fink had commented on inflation, saying he doesn’t believe that it is transitory.

“I’m not calling for stagflation — I don’t see any evidence of that — but do I see persistence in inflation? Yes.”

“I think it’s more than transitory related to supply-chain issues and commodity prices.”

While President Rob Kapito said at the time some clients are increasing allocations to various alternatives from 1% to up to 20%, the CEO said some are allocating more to equities.

“I don’t think there’s one global trend of going in and out of one product because [there are] inflationary fears and some clients don’t believe in that.”

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Author: AnTy

George Soros Owns Bitcoin, But CEO says It’s ‘Less Interesting’ Than DeFi Use Cases

George Soros Owns Bitcoin, But CEO says It’s ‘Less Interesting’ Than DeFi Use Cases

According to Dawn Fitzpatrick, Bitcoin has “crossed the chasm to mainstream” and sees CBDCs to be here “quicker than people expect.”

Soros Fund Management, the family office of billionaire investor George Soros has invested in Bitcoin, reveals the CEO Dawn Fitzpatrick.

In an interview with Bloomberg this week, Fitzpatrick talked about the Fund with $27 billion in assets under management owning BTC, but only some.

“From our perspective again, we own some coins, not a lot, and the coins themselves are less interesting than the use cases of DeFi and things like that.”

While there have been previous reports that the Soros Fund had started trading Bitcoin and has also been an investor in the space through NYDIG and Lukka, this is the official confirmation from the CEO.

“I’m not sure bitcoin is only viewed as an inflation hedge. Here I think it’s crossed the chasm to mainstream.”

She pointed to the cryptocurrencies market cap, which has surpassed $2 trillion, and more than 200 million people around the world being involved in crypto to support the fact that “this has gone mainstream.”

As Soros being a Bitcoiner spread the market, Bitcoin price went to hit a five-month high of $55,700 and claim back the status of being a trillion-dollar asset class.

While Bitcoin is leading the crypto market right now, altcoins also see gains sending the total crypto market cap to almost $2.4 trillion.

Besides crypto, Fitzpatrick also commented on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), saying they are “going to be here, I think quicker than people expect.”

According to her, China’s digital yuan would be a “potential threat to other bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies,” But this will only be temporary, “I don’t think they’ll be successful in permanently destabilizing bitcoin,” she added.

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Author: AnTy

Citadel Founder Says Regulating Crypto Will Make It “A Smaller Market” And “That’ll Be Good”

Citadel Founder Says Regulating Crypto Will Make It “A Smaller Market” And “That’ll Be Good”

The billionaire’s Wellington hedge fund beat S&P 500’s 16% return by a mere 2.5% this year through September while Bitcoin rose 68%, Ethereum 363%, Solana 8914%, and Dogecoin 4055% YTD.

Ken Griffin, the founder of the $38 billion hedge fund Citadel and market-maker Citadel Securities, is a cryptocurrency skeptic and recently criticized the time and energy spent on cryptocurrencies.

“I wish all this passion and energy that went into crypto was directed toward making the United States stronger,” said Griffin on Monday in an interview with Bloomberg at the Economic Club of Chicago.

“What a crazy concept this is that we as a country embrace so many bright, young, talented people to come up with a replacement for our reserve currency.”

According to him, it’s “a jihadist call” that “we don’t believe in the dollar.”

While not a fan of crypto, Griffin said his firm would trade digital assets if they were properly regulated.

“I just don’t want to take on the regulatory risk in this regulatory void that some of my contemporaries are willing to take on,” he said. Market makers, firms that provide market liquidity, such as Jump Trading and DRW, have embraced the asset class.

Griffin further praised US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler for increasing the scrutiny of cryptocurrencies.

He “is spot-on on the need to have thoughtful regulation around cryptocurrency,” Griffin said, adding:

“I actually think that doing so will make it a smaller market because it will become a far more competitive market when there is regulatory clarity and that will be good.”

The hedge fund billionaire has long been a crypto skeptic as back in 2018, when he questioned crypto’s value, moaning about how young investors are attracted to the crypto asset instead of company stocks that drive economic growth.

Citadel’s Wellington hedge fund rose 18.5% this year through September after recording a 7.8% gain last month but only managed to beat the S&P 500’s total return of 16%, reported Bloomberg citing a person familiar with the matter.

When it comes to year-to-date returns of the crypto market, Bitcoin is up 68%, Ethereum 363%, Solana 8914%, and Dogecoin 4055%. The total crypto market cap recorded gains of 148% in the year through September, according to CoinGecko.

During the conversation, Griffin also commented on inflation running hot, which he says is “unsettling,” but noted the Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is doing the best he can. He further said that people who are in the early part of their careers are making a “grave mistake” by not going back to the office.

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Author: AnTy

“Dollarization” Contributing to “Cryptoization” of Emerging Markets, says IMF

“Dollarization” Contributing to “Cryptoization” of Emerging Markets, says IMF

This “cryptoization” can become a threat to fiscal policy as such developing nations should consider the benefits of issuing CBDCs as a response to the growing use of crypto, the Fund said.

The growing usage of cryptocurrencies in emerging markets could create the “cryptoization” of local economies, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Friday.

This “cryptoization,” according to the international organization that promotes global financial stability, could potentially undermine exchange and capital controls and further upset financial stability in these markets.

The agency said that inefficient payment systems and unsound macroeconomic policies in emerging economies are among the drivers of cryptocurrency adoption. The lure of quick gains may also be another potential reason.

Weak domestic banking systems and the low credibility of central banks that fuel “dollarization” can further contribute to growing crypto use, according to the Fund.

“Dollarization can impede central banks’ effective implementation of monetary policy and lead to financial stability risks through currency mismatches on the balance sheets of banks, firms, and households.”

Here, wide adoption of stablecoins, which are usually backed by fiat, particularly USD, could also pose significant challenges by reinforcing existing dollarization forces, the IMF added.

But the Fund also said that the exact level of adoption of crypto assets in emerging economies was hard to gauge accurately.

In an August report, blockchain data platform Chainalysis noted that Vietnam, India, Pakistan, Kenya, and Nigeria are leading the crypto adoption globally.

The IMF said “cryptoization” can become a threat to fiscal policy as crypto assets potentially facilitate tax evasion. As such, it urged developing nations to strengthen macroeconomic policies and consider the possible benefits of issuing digital fiat – central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) as a response to the rise of crypto.

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Author: AnTy

Significant Stablecoin Adoption Could Result in “Excessive Market Power,” says BIS Report on CBDC

Significant Stablecoin Adoption Could Result in “Excessive Market Power,” says BIS Report on CBDC

Central bank money ensures public trust in money and supports public welfare, said the global body policymaker in its latest report on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

With new forms of digital money issued by the private sector, such as stablecoins emerging, which has accelerated since the Covid-19 pandemic began, central banks are also ensuring they are able to respond to a digital future system, it said.

But still, private digital assets can coexist with central bank digital currencies, the Bank for International Settlements said in the report, noting CBDcs would rely on banks and other financial institutions to act as intermediaries.

However, significant stablecoin adoption could lead to fragmentation in the payments ecosystem and “excessive market power,” found the report. It further added that private initiatives would have “lower public benefits” because they won’t be interchangeable with other forms of money. According to the BIS, private currencies also lack the protections that come with national currencies.

“Central banks have a responsibility to ensure that citizens have access to the safest form of money — central bank money — in the digital age,” said ECB president Christine Lagarde, who is the chair of this group of central bank governors.

While acknowledging that there were also risks associated with CBDCs, as money and payments develop rapidly, central banks’ plans for CBDC will also evolve, it said.

Currently, seven central banks, the Federal Reserve, Bank of England, European Central Bank, the Bank of Canada, Bank of Japan, Sveriges Riksbank, and Swiss National Bank, are working together with the BIS on retail CBDCs.

These central banks “have already identified that a CBDC could be an important instrument for ensuring that they can continue delivering their public policy objectives even as the financial system evolves,” the study said.

Facilitating international payments with CBDCs would require interoperability or cooperation, where BIS says the IMF would have an important role to play.

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Author: AnTy