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SEC Cybersecurity Compliance Preparation

October is National CyberSecurity Awareness Month, but global criminals are active every month of the year. In fact, The FBI is cautioning against the ‘Other’ Coronavirus Crisis, Cybersecurity & Privacy Risks and Scams. The SEC recognizes that registrants are faced with new operational, technological, commercial, and other challenges and issues due to COVID-19. Ethical-Advisor has partnered with […]

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Nano-technology alliance of Supreme Pharmatech and Professor M.R.Mozafari, a global nano technology expert

SAMUTPRAKARN, Thailand, Feb. 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Thailand based manufacturer of food supplement products, Supreme Pharmatech Co., Ltd., just announced, that in December 2020 they have reached an agreement with world renowned scientist, Professor M.R.Mozafari, to join hands in development and production of a new generation of food supplement products based on liposomal technology. Prof. […]

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Bitcoin plunges, Ethereum suffers, Musk loses billions: Hodler’s Digest, Feb. 21–27

Coming every Saturday, Hodler’s Digest will help you track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption and regulation highlights, leading coins, predictions and much more — a week on Cointelegraph in one link.
Top Stories This Week

Increasing stock market volatility drags Bitcoin and altcoin prices lower
Bitcoin has had an exceptionally trying week, and it doesn’t bode well for March — a month that’s traditionally bearish for the world’s biggest cryptocurrency.
After hitting record highs of $58,300 last Sunday, Bitcoin suffered a dramatic reversal of fortunes — crashing to $46,000 on Tuesday. Elon Musk might not have helped matters… in the run-up to the correction, he had tweeted that BTC and ETH seemed high.
Analysts and investors alike breathed a sigh of relief on Wednesday when Bitcoin managed to retake $50,000 — with some proclaiming that the asset had undergone a “healthy correction.” But this narrative proved shaky when BTC plunged yet again on Friday to lows of $44,454.84.
All of this comes amid a backdrop of unease in the traditional markets, and this week’s price activity suggests BTC faces an uphill struggle if it’s going to appreciate further. Generally, analysts are looking for $50,000 to become an established support before expecting any bullish continuation.

MicroStrategy purchases another $1 billion worth of Bitcoin, now owns 90,000 BTC
A flurry of good news throughout the week may have prevented things from going bad to worse for Bitcoin. Early in the week, two institutions announced they were doubling down on their BTC buy-ins. 
MicroStrategy purchased an additional 19,452 coins, with CEO Michael Saylor declaring that his company has no intention of slowing down. It came after Square announced it had purchased 3,318 BTC for $170 million — following on from a $50-million spending spree in October 2020.
Bitfinex and Tether also announced that they had reached a settlement with the New York attorney general, linked to ongoing allegations that Tether misrepresented the degree to which USDT stablecoins were backed by fiat collateral. Under the terms of the deal, both companies will have to pay $18.5 million in damages, report on their reserves periodically, and stop serving customers in the state.
On Friday, JPMorgan helped to cheer up the markets by telling clients that allocating 1% of a portfolio to Bitcoin would serve as a hedge against fluctuations in stocks, bonds and commodities.

Cardano is now a top-three cryptocurrency as ADA price soars 27% in 24 hours
Moving beyond Bitcoin, there’s been a lot of movement in the altcoin markets. 
Last week, Binance Coin had stolen the show with a stunning triple-digit surge that helped it become the world’s No. 3 cryptocurrency. Fast forward to this week, and it’s now been overtaken by Cardano’s ADA.
A fresh wave of optimism and buying volume on Friday pushed its price to a new all-time high, and momentum for the project has been building throughout February. Open interest for ADA futures also rose to $580 million, surpassing Litecoin to become the third-largest derivatives market.
Despite NFTs entering into a bull market — with a report suggesting that they’ll explode in popularity even more as 2021 continues — it’s definitely been a week to forget for Ether. After touching new all-time highs of $2,000 last weekend, ETH has tumbled by more than 26% this week… taking it below $1,500 at times.
All of this comes as an exodus from the Ethereum blockchain continues, with 1inch becoming the latest DeFi project to expand to Binance Smart Chain.

Musk no longer world’s richest man after Tesla and Bitcoin slump
As the old saying goes: “The sun don’t shine on the same dog’s ass every day.”
The sun was certainly shining on Elon Musk when the week began. One analyst had suggested that Tesla had made $1 billion in profit since making its Bitcoin investment. That’s more than the profit generated by selling electric vehicles (what it’s known for) across the whole of 2020.
Alas, that was before the carnage seen on the crypto markets. To make matters worse, Tesla’s share price has dropped by more than 20% from the highs of $890 seen on Jan. 26. These joint factors prompted Musk to lose his crown as the world’s richest man. Some analysts wasted little time in attributing TSLA’s crash to its association with Bitcoin.
But there’s another threat on the horizon, with reports suggesting that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission could investigate Musk’s alleged impact on BTC and DOGE through his many, many tweets.
The billionaire made a concerted effort to shrug off these concerns, suggesting he would even welcome such a probe.

Coinbase has held Bitcoin on its balance sheets since 2012
We’ve been learning a lot more about Coinbase this week as it gears up to launch on the stock market. One particular hipster-ish announcement came when the exchange declared that it’s held Bitcoin and other cryptos on its balance sheet for nine years.
Coinbase sought to package this announcement as a paean to other corporations that might be considering a similar move — touting itself as an authority in advising institutions about how to deal with their own prospective investments.
In other news, the company submitted its S-1 report to the Securities and Exchange Commission this week. The filing revealed that the exchange generated revenues of $1.1 billion in 2020 — 96% of which came from transaction fees. Net income in 2020 came in at $327 million… a stark contrast to the $46 million loss seen the year before.

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin is at $46,609.99, Ether at $1,470.17 and XRP at $0.43. The total market cap is at $1,429,222,267,885.
Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Fantom, Pundi X and Cardano. The top three altcoin losers of the week are Dodo, Horizen and Venus.
For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis. 

Most Memorable Quotations

“As gas price stays too high, we see a lot of projects, tokens and users coming to BSC, and this is the right moment for 1inch to expand to other blockchains.”

Sergey Kunz, 1inch co-founder

“Since our founding in 2012, Coinbase has held bitcoin and other crypto assets on our balance sheet — and we plan to maintain an investment in crypto assets as we believe strongly in the long-term potential of the cryptoeconomy.”

Coinbase

“Incredible scale for a technology that critics claimed couldn’t scale.”

Ryan Watkins, Messari researcher

“It’s very rare to see pre-GPU era bitcoins move, it only happened dozens of times in the past few years. And no, it’s probably not Satoshi.”

Antoine Le Calvez

“The company now holds over 90,000 bitcoins, reaffirming our belief that bitcoin, as the world’s most widely-adopted cryptocurrency, can serve as a dependable store of value.”

Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy CEO

“[I’m] very positive on Bitcoin, very happy to see a healthy correction here.”

Cathie Wood, Ark Investment Management founder

“We are now sitting on 2.35x the previous cycle ATH OF 20k. WE ARE JUST GETTING STARTED.”

Bitcoin Archive

“Square believes that cryptocurrency is an instrument of economic empowerment, providing a way for individuals to participate in a global monetary system and secure their own financial future.”

Square

“I think you can expect that we’ll have a billion people storing their value — in essence, a savings account — on a mobile device within five years, and they’re going to want to use something like Bitcoin.”

Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy CEO 

“We’ve experienced 2018 & 2019. This is nothing.” 

Michaël van de Poppe, Cointelegraph Markets analyst

“I do think people get drawn into these manias who may not have as much money to spare. So, I’m not bullish on Bitcoin, and my general thought would be: If you have less money than Elon, you should probably watch out.”

Bill Gates, Microsoft founder

“But we’re now to the point where ETH 1.0 — oh, we need ETH 2.0 so soon, come on, Vitalik, get it going, man — ETH 1.0, most regular users are priced out of using the majority of applications on Ethereum.”

Lark Davis, crypto influencer

“I lost most of my life savings and haven’t received a response from a human. I’d think they would refund or they would lose all their customers. I’m sick to my stomach but will join the lawsuit with plenty of proof(screenshots) if not refunded.” 

u/dtk6802, Reddit user

“In our view, many institutional investors are entering with a buy-and-hold mentality given their understanding of Bitcoin as digital gold.”

Martin Gaspar, CrossTower research analyst

“I think Tesla is going to double down on its Bitcoin investment.”

Dan Ives, Wedbush analyst

Prediction of the Week

1 billion people will store life savings on their phone in Bitcoin by 2026 — MicroStrategy CEO
We love an outlandish prediction here at Hodler’s Digest… and Michael Saylor certainly delivered the goods this week.
The MicroStrategy CEO declared that Bitcoin will be the savings method of choice for a staggering 1 billion people in just five years’ time. That’s despite the fact that just 21 million BTC exist… and his company already owns 90,000 of it.
Saylor’s comments came after U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen launched her latest attack on Bitcoin, describing it as “inefficient.”
In a confident interview with CNBC, he declared that Bitcoin “is the dominant digital monetary network,” adding: “I think you can expect that we’ll have a billion people storing their value — in essence, a savings account — on a mobile device within five years, and they’re going to want to use something like Bitcoin.”

FUD of the Week 

Bill Gates warns Bitcoin buyers: If you have less money than Elon Musk, watch out
Microsoft founder Bill Gates had a big warning for Bitcoin buyers this week.
Speaking to Bloomberg, he warned: “Elon has tons of money, and he’s very sophisticated so, you know, I don’t worry that his Bitcoin would randomly go up or down.”
Gates said it would be a mistake for the average investor to blindly follow the mania of optimism surrounding Musk’s market moves, telling those who aren’t billionaires to “watch out.” 
Criticizing Bitcoin’s energy consumption, he added: “I do think people get drawn into these manias who may not have as much money to spare. So, I’m not bullish on Bitcoin, and my general thought would be: If you have less money than Elon, you should probably watch out.”
This isn’t to say that Gates thinks digital currencies are a bad thing. He just believes that they should be transparent, reversible and (essentially) centralized.

Whale who sold Bitcoin before 2020 crash cashed out $156 million before this week’s 20% dip
As you’d expect, a post-mortem is now fully underway after this week’s carnage in the crypto markets.
Curiously, data from Santiment suggests that the initial crash may have been linked to a huge transaction that took place after Sunday’s all-time high of $58,300. The transfer of 2,700 BTC — worth $156 million at the time — was the second-biggest transaction of 2021.
It’s possible that this whale cashing out contributed to unbearable selling pressure in the market, which snowballed into the largest one-hour candle in Bitcoin’s history. If enough alarm bells weren’t ringing, this self-same wallet also dumped 2,000 BTC just before last March’s infamous flash crash.

Crypto influencer warns Ethereum fees will drive users away
A prominent crypto influencer has warned that Ethereum’s competitors will continue to siphon away users should Eth2 fail to launch soon amid ever-increasing gas fees.
Lark Davis said Ethereum’s skyrocketing fees has meant that only “rich investors” can afford to use the network, prompting smaller users to switch to competitors like Binance Smart Chain. 
Describing the current gas fee prices as “totally loco,” Davis urged Ethereum developers to expedite the launch of Eth2 in response to the skyrocketing to prevent a further exodus of users to cheaper alternatives.He added: “We’re now to the point where ETH 1.0 — oh, we need ETH 2.0 so soon, come on, Vitalik, get it going, man — ETH 1.0, most regular users are priced out of using the majority of applications on Ethereum. […] A transaction on Uniswap costs $50 on average these days, and that is just crazy.”

Best Cointelegraph Features

Sam Bankman-Fried: The crypto whale who wants to give billions away
He’s just 28 years old, but Sam Bankman-Fried has already amassed a $10-billion fortune. But unlike most people in crypto, he’s building up this fortune to give half of it away.
Can’t beat ‘em? Join ‘em: Mastercard and Visa make a case for Bitcoin
Mastercard is set to open the shop doors to crypto as a means of payment in 2021, but it will likely be a challenge for the firm.
Bitcoin price flies solo? Institutional crypto push may be overrated
Bitcoin’s market cap broke the $1-trillion barrier without a final push from institutions — could their influence be overrated?

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This bullish Bitcoin options strategy lets traders speculate on BTC price with less risk

Historical data shows that it is nearly impossible to consistently predict Bitcoin’s price action and many traders that attempt this end up losing money. Now that Bitcoin trades near $50,000, the ultimate goal for most traders is to hold on to their current holdings and incrementally add to them in a way that is not terribly risky. 
Options strategies provide excellent opportunities for traders who have a fixed-range target for an asset. For example, using leveraged futures contracts might be a solution for a scenario where one expects a price increase of up to 28% over the next month. Of course, using a tight stop loss lessens the viability of the trade.
On the other hand, using multiple call (buy) options can create a strategy that allows gains that are four times higher than the potential loss. These can be used in both bullish and bearish circumstances, depending on the investors’ expectations.
The long butterfly strategy allows a trader to profit from the upside while limiting losses. It’s important to remember that options have a set expiry date; therefore, the price increase must happen during the defined period.
The Bitcoin (BTC) calendar options below are for the March 26 expiry, but this strategy can also be used on Ether (ETH) options or a different time frame. Although the costs will vary, its general efficiency should not be affected.
Profit / Loss estimate. Source: Deribit Position Builder
The suggested bullish strategy consists of buying 1 BTC worth $48,000 call options while simultaneously selling double that amount of $56,000 calls. To finalize the trade, one should buy 1 BTC worth of $64,000 call options.
While this call option gives the buyer the right to acquire an asset, the contract seller gets a (potential) negative exposure.
As the estimate above shows, if BTC is trading for $48,700, any outcome between $49,380 (up 1.5%) and $62,630 (up 28.6%) yields a net gain. For example, a 10% price increase to $53,570 results in a $4,000 net gain. Meanwhile, this strategy’s maximum loss is $1,350 if BTC trades below $48,000 or above $64,000 on March 26.
This allure of this butterfly strategy is the trader can secure a $4,050 gain, which is 3x larger than the maximum loss, if BTC trades from $53,550 to $58,460 expiry.
Overall it yields a much better risk-reward from leveraged futures trading considering the limited downside.
The multiple options strategy trade provides a better risk-reward for bullish traders seeking exposure to BTC’s price increase and the only upfront fee required is the $1,350 which reflects the maximum loss if the price is below $48,000 or above $64,000 at the expiry date.
The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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ESG Today: Week in Review

This week in ESG news: The SEC looks to update climate disclosure rules; Italy joins the growing sovereign green bond market; IOSCO backs creation of a sustainability standards board; Union Bank enables bank deposits to be directed to ESG projects; GM appoints new sustainability head; new private company ESG assessment tools from ISS ESG; new midcap and smallcap ESG ETFs from DWS; 3 top Canadian banks join climate finance organizations, and more.
See below for the highlights of the past week, and get all your ESG news at ESG Today:
Sustainability Goals, Initiatives and Achievements
RBC Commits to Net Zero Lending, Sets $500 Billion Sustainable Finance Target
TD Joins RMI’s Center for Climate-Aligned Finance
CIBC Joins PCAF, Committing to Measuring and Reporting GHG Impact of Loans and Investments
JetBlue Launches Equity, Inclusion, Diversity and Career Access Initiatives
Santander Aims for Net Zero by 2050, Including Financed Emissions
Government, Regulators and Politics
SEC Announces Review of Climate Disclosures
Italy Joins Growing Sovereign Sustainable Finance Market With New Green Bond Framework
Reporting and Disclosure
OneConnect and SGX Partner to Launch an ESG Reporting Platform
IOSCO Commits to Work with IFRS on Development of a Sustainability Standards Board
Sustainable Finance
H&M’s €500 Million Sustainability Linked Bond Nearly 8x Oversubscribed
Luxembourg Green Exchange Launches Climate-Aligned Issuers Debt Section
MUFG Launches Green Deposits, Enabling Clients to Direct Bank Deposits into ESG Projects
ESG Services and Tools
GRI and B Lab Partner to Enable Alignment of ESG Reporting, and Impact Management
ISS ESG Launches ESG Performance and Risk Scorecards for Private Companies
Funds and Investors
DWS Launches ETFs Tracking New S&P DJI MidCap and SmallCap ESG Indices
Barclays and Solactive Launch Index Targeting Low Carbon Economy-Aligned Investments
BNP Paribas Launches Fund Focused on Diversity and Inclusive Growth
Cowen Raises over $900 Million for Inaugural Sustainability Fund
Exec Appointments
GM Appoints Kristen Siemen to Lead Sustainability Strategy
ING Names Anne-Sophie Castelnau as New Global Head of Sustainability
Impact Cubed Hires Former Morningstar Head of Sustainability Libby Bernick as CEO
Reports, Studies & Surveys
AIGCC Survey: Asian Investors Becoming More Sophisticated on Climate Strategies

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Nevada state officials blame data entry errors for inaccurate COVID-19 case counts

Nevada state officials working with the Department of Corrections are placing blame on data entry errors for inaccurately reported COVID-19 case counts. On Friday, Nevada’s prison system along with the Department of Health and Human Services released a statement admitting that inaccuracies were found in the data reported on the state’s coronavirus dashboard, The Associated […]

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Economist warns of dystopia if ‘Bitcoin Aristocrats’ become reality

Not everyone is excited about hyperbitcoinization. 
According to a popular copy/paste meme, Bitcoin holders are set to become a neo-aristocracy as Bitcoin becomes the dominant world currency:

Only $BTC holders will be permitted to the upper echelons of society. Nocoiners will be shunned, socially and financially. At best forced to become servants to the new upper class. At worst executed for crimes against the #Bitcoin empire.
— The Crypto Dog (@TheCryptoDog) January 2, 2021
The meme is part of a larger vision for Bitcoin’s future, a semi-serious but mostly tongue-in-cheek narrative that can be lumped under the “Bitcoin Citadels” umbrella: a vision of the future in which Bitcoin becomes so valuable that hodlers become lords quite literally defending their coins in castles. 
Originating from a Reddit post written by someone claiming to be a time traveler (they called for a $1 million price target in 2021, if you’re curious), the Citadel meme has taken on a life of its own, even inspiring a short film.
But despite the self-evident farce and fantasy behind the meme, one economist is now warning that it might not be far off from reality should Bitcoin succeed in its mission to achieve monetary supremacy.
On the think tank Center for Economic Policy and Research’s website, academic Jon Danielsson of the London School of Economics wrote an article yesterday in which he envisions a future where “Bitcoin aristocrats” will “fuel social division and populism” through extreme wealth inequality:

“To begin with, the current owners of bitcoin will become the wealthiest people in the world, rivalling the kings and emperors that ruled over empires in centuries past. They literally will own all the money. They can buy anything they want. There aren’t that many of them. Compared to the multitudes that own assets today via all the pension funds and mutual funds and the rest, it is a tiny group of people.”

The government would be forced to “protect or attack” this new class of overlords, ones who attained their “rank just by buying early. They will make no contribution to society.” 
Gloom and grumpiness aside, Danielsson ultimately concludes that such a future “cannot” come to pass because Bitcoin is unsuitable as a unit of account due to its price instability. Because of these “internal contradictions,” Danielsson writes, “the price of Bitcoin will head to zero.”
Economic analysis that comes to the same conclusions as time-traveling Redditors aside, not everyone is as grim about a hyperbitcoinized world. In fact, in many cases it has proven to be a boon for countries struggling under inflation. 

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Kain Warwick

6 Questions for Kain Warwick of Synthetix

We ask the buidlers in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sector for their thoughts on the industry… and we throw in a few random zingers to keep them on their toes!

This week, our 6 Questions go to Kain Warwick, the founder of Synthetix.
Kain Warwick is the founder of Synthetix, a derivatives liquidity protocol on Ethereum. Synthetix has processed billions of dollars in trading volume. Warwick previously founded Blueshyft, Australia’s largest cryptocurrency payment gateway. 

1 — What’s a problem you think blockchain has a chance to solve but that hasn’t been attempted yet?
I might just still be a 2017 idiot here, but I still feel equity settlement, having a decentralized ledger for equity settlement, is a sensible thing that will happen. But it can’t happen until regulators are comfortable with it happening, etc. The efficiencies it will add are just too obvious to be avoided. There are certain things that come with that, that mean it’s gonna take a while before we see that. There have been weird little experiments, but I think a large-scale transition to something like that is still a ways away. But it will be hugely impactful when it happens.
2 — Which is sillier: $500,000 Bitcoin or $0 Bitcoin? Why?
$0 Bitcoin. There is just zero chance — it’s literally impossible for Bitcoin to go to zero. There is not a market where someone would not have a buy price for every Bitcoin above zero. It’s just functionally impossible. Whatever the canonical Bitcoin is, even if it’s not the one that it is right now — that specific chain or whatever — it has a price above zero. There’s always a market for something, there’s always a buyer of last resort for something, and Bitcoin has way more buyers of last resort — it’s never going to zero.

3 — What should we be teaching our kids?
I think we should teach our children to not blindly accept authority, which is a hard thing to do because there are so many things in children’s lives that are structured and controlled that they don’t have control over. And so, to teach them to be respectful of certain things while also being mindful that they should be questioned is a delicate balance to strike.

4 — What’s the silliest conspiracy theory out there… and which one makes you pause for a moment?
Probably the silliest conspiracy theory is the Bill Gates microchip vaccine theory, and probably the one that gives me pause for a moment is the Elon Musk microchip conspiracy theory.

5 — Which people do you find most inspiring, most interesting and most fun in this space?
I feel like Andre Cronje is an easy and obvious one. You never know what the fuck he’s going to be doing. Larry Cermak’s good, Anthony Sassano is good, Mariano Conti is good, he’s always high value. Obviously, G (DegenSpartan) is always good.

6 — What talent do you lack and wish you had? How would you use it if you had it?
I lack the talent to draw things, and I would be starting my own NFT project if I had the ability to draw.
 

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BREAKING NOTICE: ROSEN, A TOP RANKED LAW FIRM, Encourages AgEagle Aerial Systems, Inc. Investors with Losses in Excess of $100K to Secure Counsel Before Important Deadline – UAVS

NEW YORK, Feb. 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — WHY: Rosen Law Firm, a global investor rights law firm, announces it has filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of purchasers of the securities of AgEagle Aerial Systems, Inc. (NYSE: UAVS) between September 3, 2019 and February 18, 2021, inclusive (the “Class Period”). A class action lawsuit has already […]

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Institutions and miners accumulating through Bitcoin chop; whales uncertain

After a violent price reversal last week that saw Bitcoin retreat from all-time highs, traders and analysts are now eyeing major players and investors to gauge BTC’s next move — and so far the reaction is decidedly mixed.
Data from on-chain analytics firm Glassnode indicates that the number of Bitcoin whales — a term for wallets that hold between 1,000 and 10,000 BTC — has at least temporarily reversed what was previously a strong uptrend starting in April 2020, a phenomena Glassnode labeled as a potential “end of whale spawning season.”
Chart via Glassnode
The Glassnode blog did make note that a “sizeable portion” of the decline may be attributable to custodial wallets restructuring, however. In fact, if some of the decline is related to custodians moving coins into deep storage, there’s an outside chance it could be a sign of more BTC moving into whale ownership, even the actual number of coins in whale addresses indicates otherwise. As a result, it may be difficult to label the decline in whale wallets to panic selling during crypto and macro market chop. 
Miner outflows, meanwhile, paint a more explicitly bullish picture. 
In a Tweet on Friday, Moskovski Capital CEO Lex Moskovski noted that Bitcoin miners — a frequent scapegoat for price dumps and boogeyman of cryptoTwitter — have actually begun accumulating coins as opposed to selling:

Miners have stopped selling and started accumulating #BitcoinYesterday was the first day since Dec, 27 when Miners Position change turned positive.Miners were selling their bitcoins for two months.Bullish. pic.twitter.com/S89iBcz4k3
— Lex Moskovski (@mskvsk) February 27, 2021
Likewise, there appears to be good news in regards to institutional accumulation. Ki Young Ju, the CEO of CryptoQuant, noted that the quantity of BTC in exchange wallets continues to drop — a sign he believes points to continued institutional demand:

Another significant Coinbase outflows at 48k. US institutional investors are still buying $BTC.I think the major reason for this drop is the jittering macro environment like the 10-year Treasury note, not whale deposits, miner selling, and lack of institutional demand. https://t.co/wzwkwMhJWx pic.twitter.com/1uEEF8SX5Q
— Ki Young Ju 주기영 (@ki_young_ju) February 26, 2021
However, some recent research indicates that the institutions hoovering Bitcoin may not have as much an impact on the price as originally thought. What’s more, indicators suggest that retail mania has hardly even begun — a sign that the latest pullback may only be temporary, and the next push is where FOMO will really kick in. 
At the time of writing Bitcoin is trading at $46,750, down 2% on the day. 

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Is Bitcoin at risk of another drop below $40K in a historically corrective March?

Bitcoin (BTC) has seen a corrective week as the price dropped from $58,000 to $44,000 in a matter of days. This dropdown caused a panic reaction across the markets as the euphoria was immediately halted.
For instance, the Crypto Fear and Greed Index plunged to monthly lows of 56 after being above 90, or “extreme greed” for an entire month. 
Crypto Fear & Greed Index. Source: Alternative.me
However, such a panic reaction is unwarranted because corrections appear frequently in a bull market as a “reset” before continuation. This is organic and healthy and offers a good opportunity for traders and investors to buy the dip.
Rejection at $52,000 indicates further weakness
BTC/USDT 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView
The 4-hour chart shows an apparent downtrend since the previous high at $58,000. This high could be the top for the coming months, a period that may see a more prolonged correction.
However, the price action since this top at $58,000 indicates weakness as every support level flips into resistance, indicating further weakness.
The chart shows these flips, where the $55,000 level was the first one. After that, the price of Bitcoin dropped significantly to the support zone around $45,000. This support zone held and resulted in a strong bounce toward $52,000.
But, unfortunately for the bulls, this level wasn’t broken and instead saw a rejection, confirming further weakness across the market and more downside for BTC price. 
This now paints a clear picture of the critical levels to watch. Ideally, the support zone between $42,500-$44,000 has to hold for further upward momentum. If it fails, further weakness can be expected toward the $37,500-$39,000 level.
But if the $42,500-44,000 support zone holds, higher prices can be expected once Bitcoin breaks above the resistance between $50,000 and $51,000.
The bullish structure is still intact
BTC/USD 1-day chart. Source: TradingView 
While the lower timeframes indicate weakness for BTC/USD, the higher timeframes suggest a healthy correction. The market construction is still very bullish, as the chart above shows.
The previous top was at $42,000, after which the new support was established at $30,000. This last top was easily broken as Bitcoin’s price accelerated to the $58,000 high. Hence, a correction to even $37,000 could be classified as healthy and organic in this type of bull market.
Simply put, as long as BTC holds above the $30,000 low of January 2021, the market can be classified as bullish.
March is often a corrective month
XBT/USD 1-week candle chart. Source: Tradingview
History shows that March isn’t the most bullish month for the cryptocurrency market. In recent years, corrections have been seen in March. Specifically, corrections of 15%-60% happened in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2020.
The latest crash was caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and could be classified as a “black swan.” Nevertheless, corrections tend to happen in March and this year could also see another pullback.
Therefore, corrections can last for several weeks and are frequently not completed in just one drop. Hence, a correction toward the $35,000-$40,000 is still on the table.
XBT/USD 1-week chart. Source: TradingView
The primary indicator to watch for this is the 21-Week MA. Often, corrections tend to move toward this line as a key point for a potential reversal. Therefore, in the coming weeks, this 21-Week MA could provide support in the correction.
Currently, the 21-Week MA is around $28,000, though this should climb up in the coming weeks toward $33,000-35,000.
The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Moving beyond the crisis narrative: Crypto in a post-pandemic world

Everyone knows the story. When the first block of Bitcoin (BTC) was mined, the protocol itself entered a world of grave economic uncertainty. Not long before the market would hit its lowest point of the 2009 recession, Bitcoin was quietly created, dropped like a life raft alongside a then-sinking economy. The now infamous phrase “Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks” was cribbed from the headlines, immortalized in code in the origin story of one of the most compelling, innovative, best-performing assets of the last decade.
But Bitcoin did not immediately take root beyond a small community of true believers. Bitcoin and digital assets, in general, have been a lot of things in their relatively short histories, from purely speculative investments and “magical internet money” to a crisis-time safe haven and an attractive hedge against “the great monetary inflation.”
In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, an associated market meltdown and huge amounts of central bank stimulus, cryptocurrencies have proved themselves to be remarkably resilient.
But as we watch vaccines being distributed around the country, cautiously optimistic that the end of the pandemic is within reach, where will crypto fit in a post-pandemic world? If its history of resilience shows us anything, we expect crypto to adapt to whatever the next few years will bring — crisis or not.
Related: How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected the crypto space? Experts answer
Crypto banks
Just three years ago, leaders of some of the largest banks in the world refused to even talk about Bitcoin in interviews, calling the asset itself a “fraud” and referring to those who would buy it as “stupid.”
Today, the general sentiment across banks is markedly different. On the heels of the United States Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s Interpretive Letter #1170, which made explicitly clear that federally chartered banks can provide banking services to legally operated companies in the digital asset space and custody digital assets on behalf of their clients, banks have been looking for the best way to get their clients the crypto exposure they demand. We anticipate legacy financial players’ interest in crypto to only grow in the coming years, with crypto becoming a mainstream requirement of financial services.
In the short term, banks will almost certainly rely on subcustody relationships with digital asset specialists to safely and effectively get crypto into their clients’ hands. And this is because the complexity is easier to address from the crypto-native side than the other way around.
Related: The need for a dialogue between crypto businesses and regulators
We also anticipate some number of acquisitions to occur, with some crypto service providers being swallowed up by banks with pockets deep enough to buy them. As demand for crypto services grows, and as regulatory clarity comes, more and more institutions will enter.
Proliferation of decentralized apps
Just as Bitcoin was built in response to the failings of a legacy system, decentralized finance has emerged as crypto’s answer to financial intermediaries. Until recently, though, entire portions of this ecosystem have been unavailable to institutions, mostly for lack of a secure means to participate.
Slowly but surely, institutional-grade DeFi tools are coming to market, and we anticipate this trend to continue. Not only will we see a continued proliferation of DeFi growth, but institutional-grade tools will make institutional participation far more accessible.
Related: Was 2020 a ‘DeFi year,’ and what is expected from the sector in 2021? Experts answer
Despite its significant growth, the DeFi space is still very much fragmented. Cross-chain interoperability — or lack thereof — is still a problem. Institutions want to be able to put their assets to use across the DeFi ecosystem. We anticipate significant growth in this area, with more and more layer-one protocols being bridged to DeFi and the broader Ethereum ecosystem — a development that also has the potential to improve liquidity along with market stability and efficiency.
Corporate treasuries and lowered barriers to entry
Against a backdrop of seemingly endless monetary stimulus, a significant number of private companies are treating digital assets as an inflation hedge. Some of these, like Square and MicroStrategy, have taken significant positions in recent months. We’ve seen MassMutual buy up $100 million in Bitcoin. And with Tesla’s $1.5-billion dollar Bitcoin purchase this month, the trend shows no signs of slowing. In the coming years, we expect digital assets to become an instrumental part of private-company balance sheets.
Related: Tesla, Bitcoin and the crypto space: The show Musk go on? Experts answer
Another factor at play is the lowered barrier to entry on the retail front. With tools like Celo’s Valora coming to market, Diem expected to launch in 2021 and firms like PayPal making it easy for their clients to buy crypto, we expect to see more of crypto as a tool for banking the unbanked — for putting financial tools into the hands of the millions without access to traditional banking services.
Related: Will PayPal’s crypto integration bring crypto to the masses? Experts answer
Beyond the crisis narrative
By virtue of being built in response to one economic crisis, crypto seems to be locked into a crisis narrative. In reality, digital assets have more than proved to be resilient in even the most challenging economic times. Just this past year, crypto proved itself in the grips of a once-in-a-century global emergency, earning a place in the portfolios of institutional and retail investors alike.
As the pandemic (hopefully) fades into the rearview, it’s exciting to think about what crypto can do without being forced into a defensive posture — without being defined against legacy assets like gold. It would be naive to say that crypto will never face another crisis — it almost certainly will. But from here, at what feels like the tail end of the pandemic, it’s exciting to think about what crypto can do in whatever “new normal” comes next.
The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Diogo Monica is a co-founder and the president of Anchorage. Before co-founding Anchorage, Diogo was the security lead at Docker — an open platform for building, shipping and running distributed applications. He has a B.Sc., an M.Sc. and a Ph.D. in computer science, has published several papers in peer-reviewed security conferences on the topic of distributed systems and information security, and is the author of several patents in secure communications, encrypted hardware and payment systems.

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While Washington dithers, Wyoming and other US states mine for crypto gold

The United States is divided politically these days into red states and blue states, and increasingly, it seems to be fracturing into cryptocurrency-friendly and crypto-wary locales, too. On Feb. 21, it was revealed that San Francisco-based Ripple Labs had registered as a Wyoming business. Wyoming is arguably the most blockchain and cryptocurrency-welcoming state in the United States. 
Meanwhile, several days later, New York State’s attorney general announced a settlement of the office’s long-standing investigation into crypto trading platform Bitfinex for illegal activities. As a result, Bitfinex and affiliated Tether must pay $18.5 million for damages to the state of New York and submit to periodic reporting of their reserves.
Wyoming and New York — poles apart on the crypto regulatory spectrum — were both making industry headlines in the same week in other words. The irony wasn’t lost on Timothy Massad, former chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission and now a senior fellow at Harvard University at Kennedy School, who told Cointelegraph:

“Federal regulation of crypto assets is like swiss cheese — full of holes — and that has meant a smorgasbord at the state level, with Wyoming actively luring crypto businesses and the New York attorney general bringing aggressive enforcement actions as we saw this week with Tether and Bitfinex.”

Whether this “smorgasbord” is a good thing is a matter of some debate. Crypto havens like Wyoming can be centers of innovation, pushing a potentially revolutionary technology further forward, as Wyoming’s recently elected U.S. Senator Cynthia Lummis emphasized this week in a Chamber of Digital Commerce panel discussion with Miami’s Mayor Francis Suarez, another crypto enthusiast.
A complex fabric
But it also leads to regulatory uncertainty that gives entrepreneurs a case of hypertension. As Stephen McKeon, an associate professor of finance at the University of Oregon, told Cointelegraph: “Our regulatory system is a complex fabric of multiple agencies at both the state and federal level.” He further emphasized that “they need to coordinate on the topic of crypto assets because this asset class doesn’t map cleanly to the existing regulatory structure.”
Asked if, from a business standpoint, Ripple and others were making a smart business move registering in crypto-warm states like Wyoming with a higher degree of regulatory certainty and freedom — as well as lower taxes — McKeon added: “Businesses strive to reduce regulatory uncertainty. If moving to Wyoming helps to achieve that objective, then it’s a smart move.”
Others could follow Ripple. Zachary Kelman, managing partner at Kelman Law, told Cointelegraph: “Many crypto projects fled New York after the introduction of the onerous BitLicense back in 2015. I expect more projects to relocate in Wyoming, as well as other crypto-friendly states like New Hampshire.”
Wyoming created a stir in 2019 when its legislature authorized the chartering of special purpose depository institutions, or SPDIs, that can receive both deposits and custody assets, including cryptocurrency. The state’s banking division itself acknowledged that “it is likely that many SPDIs will focus heavily on digital assets, such as virtual currencies, digital securities and utility tokens,” though they could also deal with traditional assets. SPDIs can’t make loans like traditional banks, however.
Kraken Bank was the first business to receive a Wyoming SPDI bank charter in September 2020, followed by Avanti Bank and Trust in October, and there are “three more [SPDIs] in the pipeline” said Lummis at the Chamber of Digital Commerce’s Feb. 25 event. Avanti founder and CEO Caitlin Long had earlier suggested that Wyoming’s SPDIs potentially were “a solution to the #BitLicense problem” faced by crypto companies because “New York law exempts national banks from the BitLicense.”
But even though the Wyoming SPDI’s are state-chartered institutions, not national banks, “federal law protects parity of national banks and state-chartered banks,” continued Long, and following that logic, she concluded that SPDIs represented “a passport into some 42 U.S. states without the need for additional state [crypto] licenses.”
An accident waiting to happen?
Not all are enthralled by Wyoming’s new special-purpose banks, though. The Bank Policy Institute suggested that Wyoming’s SPDIs could be an “accident waiting to happen.” The BPI noted in September that Kraken was “the first digital asset company in U.S. history to receive a bank charter recognized under federal and state law” but warned that its business model “is inherently unstable under stress” because the new bank is funded by uninsured, demandable retail deposits “and relies on a pool of assets such as corporate bonds, munis and longer-term Treasuries to fund redemptions under stress.”
David Kinitsky, CEO of Kraken Bank, in a conversation with Cointelegraph, said that he believes the BPI blog post “comes from a lobbyist group funded by, and working on behalf of, the world’s biggest banks” and rests “on a slew of faulty assumptions,” adding further:

“[It’s] comical and hypocritical that they think their fractional reserve model along with its total reliance on asset exposure and interest rate environment is somehow less risky than a full reserve custodian bank that won’t do any lending and has a diverse set of adjacent revenue streams.”

Others have opined that innovation centers like Wyoming were merely filling the void left by the federal government, which has yet to take a coherent stance vis-a-vis the burgeoning crypto market. Benjamin Sauter, a lawyer at Kobre & Kim LLP, told Cointelegraph: “Wyoming is showing that individual states can play a meaningful role in crafting a coherent legal framework for the crypto/blockchain industry — particularly when it comes to state taxation as well as commercial and some banking issues.”
By comparison, according to him, the U.S. federal government “hasn’t really made an effort to create such a framework, and this has led to a lot of regulatory inefficiencies and general confusion.”
Innovator or loophole?
So, what about the notion that Wyoming merely created a means for its new banks to lure firms and investors based in more regulated states like New York? Kelman told Cointelegraph on the matter: “Many institutions operate entities all over the world, not just the United States. New York has jurisdiction over New Yorkers — but not any company related to a company that has had operations there.”
“Wyoming can and is becoming a center for crypto business and innovation,” Kinitsky told Cointelegraph, adding: “Certainly, there are ready similar examples within financial services like the credit card industry in South Dakota and ILC banks in Utah….SPDI banks have similar frameworks for being able to operate across the country and indeed internationally.”
McKeon agreed that Wyoming was following the South Dakota playbook: “South Dakota created favorable legislation for banks around interest rates and fees in the 1980s and now has one of the highest concentrations of bank assets in the U.S.,” adding further:

“By creating an environment that allows crypto projects to operate with a higher degree of regulatory certainty and freedom, Wyoming is likely to attract similar relocation within crypto.”

Will others join in?
Of course, other states could follow Wyoming’s lead. Kelman said: “I also expect larger states, like Florida, to follow suit with more crypto-friendly guidance, especially after Miami Mayor Francis Suarez’s overtures to the crypto community.” However, he further stressed that “given Wyoming’s small size and relative obscurity, I don’t know if it will remain a haven for an entire industry in the way Delaware has been for incorporations and corporate governance.”
As reported, Mayor Suarez is looking to develop some of “the most progressive crypto laws” and proposing within his jurisdiction innovations like paying city workers’ wages in Bitcoin (BTC) and purchasing BTC for the municipality’s treasury. Senator Lummis applauded the mayor’s initiatives at the Chamber of Digital Commerce’s panel, inviting him to “look at Wyoming’s legislative framework as a template and then build on it” by developing new Bitcoin “components,” including a pension plan for Miami workers that includes Bitcoin — something Suarez is looking into.
Multiple innovative centers like Miami and Wyoming, among others, could advance technological progress generally, she suggested. Suarez, for his part, said: “One of the things that we want to do is imitate Wyoming’s very successful integration of crypto into their community.”
Meanwhile, Avanti’s Long remains an ardent booster for her state: “Why should crypto companies redomicile to Wyoming?” she asked rhetorically on Feb. 21 following the news that Ripple Labs had registered as a Wyoming limited liability company, adding:

“No state corp tax, no franchise tax, crypto exempt from property & sales tax, our commercial laws clarify crypto legal status, crypto-friendly banks opening soon, access to crypto-open gov/legislators/US senator — all laws open-source.”

Is Wyoming good for BTC adoption?
What exactly do these tech-friendly states and cities mean for cryptocurrency adoption? Sauter was cautiously optimistic: “It’s possible that Wyoming’s efforts will have some trickle-up effects, should the federal government ever get its act together.” He stated further that there is also a major risk as businesses may be “lulled into a false sense of security and potentially conflating Wyoming’s regime for compliance at the federal level.”
Kinitsky told Cointelegraph that the convergence between crypto and banking, as is happening in Wyoming, “portends an important step toward mainstream adoption,” while McKeon added that crypto users “are primarily concerned with access to products and features. Better products translate to increased adoption.” Therefore, if Wyoming-type legislation enables crypto projects “to provide new and desirable features by mitigating regulatory risk for the providers, then it will be a positive force for general public adoption.”
Many, though, still seem to be treading water until the federal government acts to provide some legislative/regulatory structure to the nascent blockchain and cryptocurrency industry. According to Sauter, “as great and encouraging Wyoming’s recent actions are, there is only so much one state can do.” Massad also told Cointelegraph:

“This regulatory confusion creates higher costs and uncertainty. There’s still plenty of money and talent in this country flowing into crypto innovation, but we need greater regulatory clarity to ensure investor protection, financial stability and responsible innovation.”

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Biglari Holdings Inc. News Release

San Antonio, TX, Feb. 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Biglari Holdings Inc.’s 2020 Annual Report to the shareholders has been posted on the Internet, where it can be accessed at www.biglariholdings.com. The report includes Sardar Biglari’s annual letter to shareholders. About Biglari Holdings Inc. Biglari Holdings Inc. (NYSE: BH.A; BH) is a holding company owning subsidiaries engaged in […]

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Add Social Proof to Your Website to Increase Conversions and Boost Sales

https://assets.entrepreneur.com/content/3×2/2000/1614190524-Ent-JustProof.jpg Grow your brand online with this seamless social proof notifier. Free Book Preview Winfluence Get a glimpse of how to influence your audience’s buying habits using traditional and unconventional influencer marketing techniques. February 27, 2021 2 min read Disclosure: Our goal is to feature products and services that we think you’ll find interesting and […]

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What DeFi needs to do next to keep institutional players interested

The last few months’ frenzy of institutional money flowing into Bitcoin (BTC) has seen crypto hitting the headlines — at the least as a novelty asset, at the most as a must-have. There is undoubtedly a trend in the market toward greater awareness and acceptance of digital assets as a new investable asset class.
A June 2020 report by Fidelity Digital Assets found that 80% of institutions in the United States and Europe have at least an interest in investing in crypto, while more than a third have already invested in some form of digital asset, with Bitcoin being the most popular choice of investment.
A good starting point for institutional investors would be to differentiate between crypto (Bitcoin, in particular) and decentralized finance products. To date, most institutional interest has involved simply holding Bitcoin (or Bitcoin futures), with few players dipping into more exotic DeFi products.
There are a plethora of reasons for the recent Bitcoin rage. Some would cite the relative maturity of the market and increased liquidity, which means sizable trades can now take place without resulting in excessive market movement. Others would cite the unusual high volatility, high return and positive excess kurtosis (meaning a greater probability of extreme values compared with the stock market) of the asset class. Bitcoin’s backstory and its limited supply that makes it akin to digital gold have also been highlighted, making it more and more attractive in a world of inflated asset prices and unruly monetary and fiscal policies.
However, the main reason for the recent institutional interest in crypto is much less philosophical, much more practical and has to do with regulations and legacy infrastructure.
Financial institutions are old behemoths, managing billions of dollars’ worth of other people’s money, and are therefore required by law to fulfill an overabundance of rules regarding the type of assets they are holding, where they are holding them and how they are holding them.
On the one hand, in the past two years, the blockchain and crypto industry has made leaps forward in terms of regulatory clarity, at least in most developed markets. On the other hand, the development of the high-standard infrastructure that provides institutional actors with an operating model similar to that offered in the traditional world of securities now allows them to invest directly in digital assets by taking custody or indirectly through derivatives and funds. Each of these represents the real drivers in giving institutional investors enough confidence to finally dip their toes into crypto.
Keeping institutional interest alive: What about other DeFi products?
With U.S. 10-year Treasurys yielding a little higher than 1%, the next big thing would be for institutions to look at investing in decentralized yield products. It might seem like a no-brainer when rates are in the doldrums and DeFi protocols on U.S. dollar stablecoins are yielding between 2% and 12% per annum — not to mention more exotic protocols yielding north of 250% per annum.
However, DeFi is in its infancy, and liquidity is still too thin in comparison with more established asset classes for institutions to bother upgrading their knowledge, let alone their IT systems to deploy capital into it. Additionally, there are real, serious operational and regulatory risks when it comes to the transparency, rules and governance of these products.
There are many things that need to be developed — most of which are already underway — to ensure institutional interest in DeFi products, whether on the settlement layer, asset layer, application layer or aggregation layer.
Institutions’ primary concern is to ensure the legitimacy and compliance of their DeFi counterparts at both the protocol level and the sale execution level.
One solution is a protocol that recognizes the status of a wallet owner or of another protocol and advises the counterparty as to whether or not it fits its requirements in terms of compliance, governance, accountability and also code auditing, as the potential for malicious actors to exploit the system has been proved over and over.
This solution will need to go hand in hand with an insurance process to transfer the risk of an error, for example, in validation to a third party. We are starting to see the emergence of a few insurance protocols and mutualized insurance products, and adoption and liquidity in DeFi need to be large enough to caution the investments in time, money and expertise to fully develop viable institutional insurance products.
Another venue to be enhanced is the quality and integrity of data through trustful oracles and the need to increase the confidence in oracles to achieve compliant levels of reporting. This goes hand in hand with the need for sophisticated analytics to monitor investments and on-chain activity. And it goes without saying that more clarity on accounting and taxes is needed from certain regulators who haven’t emitted an opinion yet.
Another obvious issue concerns network fees and throughput, with requests taking from a few seconds to double-digit minutes depending on network congestion, and fees twirling between a few cents and 20 bucks. This is, however, being resolved with plans for the development of Ethereum 2.0 in the next two years and also the emergence of blockchains more adapted to faster transactions and more stable fees.
A final, somewhat funny point would be the need for improvement in user experience/user interfaces in order to turn complex protocols and code into a more user-friendly, familiar interface.
Regulation matters
People like to compare the blockchain revolution to the internet revolution. What they fail to remember is that the internet disrupted the flow of information and data, both of which were not regulated and had no existing infrastructure, and it is only in the last few years that such regulations were adopted.
The financial industry, however, is heavily regulated — even more so since 2008. In the United States, finance is three times more regulated than the healthcare industry. Finance has a legacy operational system and infrastructure that makes it extremely hard to disrupt and tedious to transform.
It’s likely that in the next 10 years, we will see a fork between instruments and protocols that are fully decentralized, fully open source and fully anonymous and instruments that will need to fit in the tight framework of the heavy regulation and archaic infrastructure of financial markets, resulting in a loss of some of the above characteristics along the way.
This will by no means slow down the fantastic rate of creativity and the relentless, fast-paced innovation in the sector, as a large number of new products in the DeFi space — products we haven’t even predicted — are anticipated. And within a quarter of a century, once DeFi will have first adapted to and then absorbed capital markets, its full potential will be unleashed, leading to a frictionless, decentralized, self-governing system.
The revolution is here, and it is here to stay. New technologies have undeniably shifted the financial industry from a sociotechnical system — controlled through social relations — to a technosocial system — controlled through autonomous technical mechanisms.
There is a fine equilibrium to be reached between tech-based, fast-paced crypto and antiquated, regulated fiat systems. Building a bridge between the two will only benefit the system as a whole.
This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.
The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Amber Ghaddar is the founder of AllianceBlock, a globally compliant decentralized capital market. With a vast amount of experience across the capital markets industry over the last decade, Amber began her career at investment banking giant Goldman Sachs, before moving to JPMorgan Chase where she held a number of different roles in structured solutions, macro systematic trading strategies and fixed income trading. Amber obtained a B.Sc. in science and technology before graduating with three master’s degrees (neurosciences, microelectronics and nanotechnologies, and international risk management) and a Ph.D. She’s a graduate of McGill University and HEC Paris.

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Grayscale's Bitcoin premium has dropped to record lows below zero

Grayscale Bitcoin Trust ($GBTC) is currently the largest listed cryptocurrency asset with $30.17 billion in assets under management. The firm currently holds more than 655,730 BTC and the security is tradable in the United States through over-the-counter markets.
How is GBTC different from a Bitcoin ETF?
The fund was launched in 2013 and the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust became the preferred institutional vehicle in the U.S. for BTC due to the lack of a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).
Investment trust funds are regulated by the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and they are designed exclusively for accredited investors. Nevertheless, those can be sold to retail traders after a six-month lock-up period.
This specificity causes GBTC shares to trade above the equivalent BTC held by the trust whenever there’s retail demand on secondary markets. Meanwhile, institutional clients can buy at par directly from Grayscale Investments regardless of the price on OTC markets.
Grayscale GBTC Bitcoin Trust premium (blue) vs. Marker price (green). Source: Bybt.com
As displayed above, such a premium sometimes surpassed 40%, indicating heavy buying pressure from investors. The situation changed over the past four weeks as Bitcoin price peaked at $58,000 and initiated a substantial correction, causing the GBTC premium to range between 5% and 10%.
A diminished appetite in the secondary markets creates a potential imbalance as there is currently no redemption program for the GBTC. Had there been a way to convert it back to BTC, a market maker would gladly buy the trust shares at a discount.
Grayscale GBTC Bitcoin Trust premium to BTC. Source: YCharts.com
Although the recent price crash could explain the 7% discount seen on Feb. 26, Bitcoin faced multiple 30% corrections in the past with no apparent impact on GBTC premium. Even during the horrific bear market in late 2018, GBTC traded above the net asset value (NAV).
A new challenger appears
Although no better alternative was previously offered, Canada’s TSX launched a Bitcoin ETF on Feb. 18, providing investors direct exposure to BTC. This structure allows the market maker to create and redeem shares, thus minimizing eventual premium or discount to the net asset value.
This time around, the selling pressure that took place found less buying activity from non-accredited investors. On the other hand, the Canadian Purpose Investments ETF surpassed 10,000 BTC under management in one week, which signals the instrument’s success despite a sharp downturn in BTC price.
Unless Grayscale Investments opens a redemption program, nothing is preventing GBTC from continuing to trade below its net asset value.
The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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SHAREHOLDER ALERT: Monteverde & Associates PC Announces an Investigation of Regal Beloit Corp. – RBC

NEW YORK, Feb. 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Juan Monteverde, founder and managing partner at Monteverde & Associates PC, a national securities firm rated Top 50 in the 2018 and 2019 ISS Securities Class Action Services Report and headquartered at the Empire State Building in New York City, is investigating Regal Beloit Corp. (“RBC” or the “Company”) (RBC) relating to its proposed […]

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