It wasn’t just a bull run for prices last year. Careers in crypto outstripped price action in 2021, as crypto job searches soared by 395% in the United States alone according to LinkedIn.

Crucially, the crypto industry outpaced the wider tech industry, which also saw remarkable development, almost doubling its number of job listings. However, at 98% growth, the tech industry dwindles in comparison to crypto jobs, which gained by a whopping 395%.

Furthermore, no industry was safe from “crypto-ization” in 2021. The LinkedIn News post offered valuable insight into crypto influencing other industries:

While most of the job postings were in software and finance, other industries are also seeing a rise in demand for crypto talent. These include professional services like accounting and consulting, as well as the staffing and computer hardware sectors.

For 2022, the growth trend looks set to continue. The biggest exchanges in crypto are brimming with job posts; Coinbase has over 250 openings, Kraken over 300, and the world’s most active exchange, Binance, lists more than 600 job posts. 

For Bitcoiners and Bitcoin (BTC) Maxi’s there’s a new resource, Bitcoiner jobs. A service dedicated to helping connect Bitcoiners with Bitcoin-only companies, it now offers almost 100 Satoshi-approved careers.

For those who are unable to switch jobs into crypto, a wider HR trend is crypto remuneration. The Mayors of New York and Miami announced that they would take a portion of their pay in BTC in 2021, while a total of seven NFL players have chosen crypto over cash salaries to date.

Related: 3x NBA champion Andre Iguodala becomes the latest athlete to receive salary in crypto

Nonetheless, while the crypto career switch appears to be gaining traction, the LinkedIn audience is not convinced. Most comments on the LinkedIn post were from bewildered onlookers wondering why crypto has value; and one aggrieved copywriter remonstrated the industry’s scammy nature.

Plus, given that Bitcoin price action has yet to impress in 2022, the crypto industry may struggle to sustain such high human resources growth levels.

In the 2018 bear market, several cryptocurrency companies laid off staff. In sum, BTC activity needs to pick up to continue to support job creation.


Cointelegraph By Joseph Hall

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British crypto enthusiasts were busy consolidating and rebalancing during the last gasp of 2021. Finder.com surveyed 2,013 Internet users in the United Kingdom in December 2021 with varying results.  

Since the last survey conducted in October 2021, U.K. crypto ownership crept up by 1 percentage point from 5.2% to 6.1%, while Ethere (ETH) dominance continues to manifest.

Coming in at third place, just behind Singapore and Australia, the U.K.’s Ether ownership among crypto holders consolidated at 32.9%, with XRP the third most widely held crypto, at 17.4%.

Curiously, interest across the 27 countries that Finder.com surveyed shows that the global average adoption rate for Ether decreased from 28.2% in October to 24.4% in December. U.K. ETH holders are holding the line while the world’s ETH ownership declines.

There are no prizes for guessing the U.K.’s most popular cryptocurrency. Bitcoin (BTC) takes first place at 42.8%, but it is also showing weakness. While a 42.8% figure almost reflects the Bitcoin dominance ratio, it has plummeted from highs of 56.7%.

The overall cryptocurrency market dipped considerably in December, while analysts’ predictions missed the mark for a $100,000 BTC in 2021. The overriding crypto sentiment has been bearish since BTC first wicked to $42,000 in early December.

It appears the macro bearish trend is reflected in the U.K.’s crypto behavior. Some selling and portfolio rebalancing took place in the run-up to the new year; Bitcoin ownership dipped, Solana (SOL) climbed to 15% ownership and Dogecoin (DOGE) made a 1% gain.

Curiously, Bitcoin ownership slipped across the board worldwide. Only one country saw an increase in its percentage of Bitcoin ownership from October to December, as Australia’s BTC dominance grew to 72.7%. It was also the country with the highest proportion of crypto owners holding Bitcoin worldwide.

Related: Bitcoin payments decline as other cryptocurrencies grow

In line with Cointelegraph’s reporting in October last year, emerging markets continue to show the strongest indicators of bubbling cryptocurrency adoption. Russia, Colombia, the Philippines, and India were in the top five countries for growth in crypto ownership in December. Detailed statistics and insights are expected later this month.

The U.K., however, is dragging its feet for crypto growth rates, trending upwards by a mere 1%. While it is still positive, the global growth average for crypto ownership blossomed by 4.3%, putting the U.K. in the bottom five of the countries surveyed.


Cointelegraph By Joseph Hall

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Major crypto wallet and platform Crypto.com has temporarily halted withdrawals after “a small number of users reporting suspicious activity on their accounts,” but all funds are reportedly safu at the moment. 

A few hours ago, Crypto.com halted withdrawals from its platform in response to several “thefts” by customers’ accounts. Dogecoin (DOGE) founder Billy Markus noticed a suspicious transaction pattern on Etherscan that prompted the company to halt all transactions until they figured out what was going on with their platform.

Ben Baller, a cryptocurrency enthusiast and jeweler, claimed that his account was breached, losing 4.28 Ether (ETH) (about $15,000). Ben also said that he used two-factor authentication, so the alleged perpetrators must have bypassed some of Crypto.com’s security features.

Related: Crypto.com announces global partnership with Formula 1

Cointelegraph reached out to Crypto.com for more details regarding its decision to halt withdrawals but did not receive a response as of publishing time. This article will be updated pending new information.

The cryptocurrency industry is no stranger to hacks, rug-pulls and protocol exploits. Earlier this month, decentralized finance security platform and bug bounty service ImmuneFi found that losses from hacks, scams and other malicious activities exceeded $10.2 billion dollars over 2021.

Per the report, there were 120 crypto exploits or fraudulent rug-pulls, the highest-valued hack being the Poly Network at $613 million.




Cointelegraph By Arnold Kirimi

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On Friday, the Kingdom of Tonga experienced the shockwave of a massive volcanic eruption of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcano. 

More eruptions ensued after the first, leaving the citizens of Tongatapu, the main island of Tonga, to face down a tsunami.

Amid the difficulties, crypto holders expressed their sympathy and intent to donate Bitcoin (BTC) to help with the relief operations. Twitter user Onair Blair urged Bitcoin supporter and former Tongan lawmaker Lord Fusitu’a to set up a wallet address where people can donate Bitcoin for Tonga’s relief funds. 

With waves of up to 1.2 meters (about 4 feet) covering roads and properties, people started fleeing to higher ground to escape. At the time of writing, there have been no casualties reported. However, air and water contamination are now some of the immediate concerns for aid organizations.

Lord Fusitu’a responded with a BTC wallet address and a link where people can donate fiat to help with the relief operations. The address has received a total of 0.10794983 BTC ($4,625.29) since Sunday.

Related: Blockchain gaming community raises $1.4M to help typhoon victims

On Friday, Lord Fusitu’a told Cointelegraph of plans to use geothermal energy from the volcanoes to power Bitcoin mining operations that would aid the country’s finances. The country has 21 volcanoes, and according to Lord Fusitu’a, “each volcano produces 95,000 megawatts at all times leaving much to spare.” The lord noted that a single volcano can generate $2,000 worth of Bitcoin daily, and this will be given to Tongan families.

The former lawmaker also noted that the country is set to copy El Salvador’s move of making Bitcoin legal tender. In a series of tweets published on Wednesday, Lord Fusitu’a said that this could happen as early as November or December this year.




Cointelegraph By Ezra Reguerra

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Bitcoin (BTC) starts a new week facing multiple hurdles but with strong internal support — can old resistance below $50,000 finally fall?

A correction event now almost in its third month is frustrating many, but conditions may soon be right for a fresh charge against opportunistic bears, an increasing number of analysts are saying.

With inflation running hot and United States lawmakers set to make the Bitcoin mining debate public this week, there are plenty of potential pitfalls in store.

Nonetheless, it’s beginning to feel like Bitcoin is at the point where it is capable of producing a classic surprise when the majority of the mainstream economy least expects it.

Cointelegraph takes a look at five factors worth paying attention to when charting BTC price action over the coming week.

Bitcoin retains key weekly close level

Bitcoin looks decidedly uninterested in tackling even local resistance levels as the week begins.

After a rangebound weekend with little unique price action, BTC/USD is putting in lower lows on short timeframes while avoiding key zones around $44,000.

With Wall Street closed for a holiday, Monday could shape up to offer more of the same before markets provide direction.

Bitcoin did, however, manage to close out the week at exactly the crucial point identified by trader and analyst Rekt Capital as useful for aiding bullish momentum.

“A Weekly Close above ~$43100 (black) would be a good sign of confirmation for BTC to continue higher from here,” he wrote Sunday alongside an accompanying price chart.

“By turning black into support on the Weekly, $BTC would confirm a re-entry into its ~$43100-$51800 range.”

BTC/USD annotated chart. Source: Rekt Capital/ Twitter

A subsequent dip took the largest cryptocurrency lower, with $42,337 on Bitstamp the local floor for Monday at the time of writing.

Also cautiously optimistic is fellow popular trader Crypto Ed, who is eyeing a potential replay of last week’s run above $44,000, something that bears subsequently quashed.

“Although it’s early but this looks like the start of continuation of last weeks move. Fingers crossed!” he summarized in part of his latest Twitter update.

Last week, meanwhile, Cointelegraph reported on sentiment favoring an upside breakout as an eventual outcome of the current ranging behavior.

Congress to discuss “cleaning up” crypto mining

The “stage is being set” in more ways than one this week as the topic of inflation returns to haunt U.S. markets and politics alike.

Amid a fresh flurry of headlines about how inflation is hitting consumers, the highest consumer price index (CPI) print in 40 years is already hitting President Joe Biden’s approval ratings.

Reining in the 7% year-on-year CPI increase could see the Federal Reserve enact no fewer than four key rate hikes in 2022 alone, Goldman Sachs forecast last week. This in turn places more pressure on weary consumers.

“The stage is being set in the coming weeks,” Pentoshi argued.

Closer to home, this week will see U.S. lawmakers discuss the alleged environmental impact of cryptocurrency mining.

With a significant chunk of the Bitcoin hash rate now coming from the U.S., any hostile policies will matter more than most when it comes to sentiment. A repeat of the China exodus from May 2021 — and its knock-on effect for hash rate and network security — will not be welcomed by anyone.

Hash rate, as Cointelegraph noted, is now back at all-time highs, fully recovered from last year’s events.

The Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee hearing is due to take place on Thursday, and is titled “Cleaning Up Cryptocurrency: The Energy Impacts of Blockchains.”

The hearing will be livestreamed in real time on the day.

Bitcoin “a bonfire covered in gasoline”

Bitcoin volatility is plumbing multi-year lows — encouraging for its acceptance as a mainstream asset, but not something many expect to last.

According to the Bitcoin Volatility Index, which calculates the standard deviation of daily BTC returns for the last 30 and 60 days, Bitcoin is at its least volatile since November 2020 at 2.63%.

Current price movements are thus similar to before BTC/USD entered price discovery after cracking its $20,000 all-time high from 2017.

For trader, entrepreneur and investor Bob Loukas, the stage is now set for a potential repeat of those events.

“Remember when everyone was loading up BTC options in Sept/Oct for the super cycle. Those are probably down 80+%,” he commented, noting that derivatives traders from before the current $69,000 all-time highs are likely more than disappointed.

“Vol dropping speaks to consolidating period, likely similar outcome period leading into Oct 20′ move. But think still time to grind in this BTC range.”

Bitcoin Volatility Index chart. Source: Buy Bitcoin Worldwide

While “exciting” price moves are yet to reappear after December’s drawdown, however, they are now all the more likely thanks to Bitcoin’s supply becoming increasingly inaccessible.

“With illiquid supply at ATH’s for this cycle, Bitcoin is essentially a bonfire covered in gasoline,” market commentator Johal Miles argued.

“The slightest whiff of demand will bring roaring flames.”

As Cointelegraph reported, BTC is being ferreted away into cold storage out of the grip of speculators.

Interest “quiet ever since” early 2021

Amid questions over the absence of retail investors even after a 40% price drawdown, new data shows that the sector has in fact had little interest in Bitcoin for an entire year.

Eyeing new entities appearing on the blockchain, Glassnode analyst TXMC Trades showed just how quiet Bitcoin has really been in terms of retail adoption since January 2021.

A look at the 30-day exponential moving average (EMA) of new entities coming on chain reveals that the last major surge ended at the start of Q1 last year.

Since then, despite two new all-time price highs, new entity numbers have fallen and returned to standard rates normally seen after bull cycle peaks.

“Bitcoin bull/bear markets have a distinct on-chain activity profile,” TXMC explained on Twitter.

“…Activity wise, the last bull run ended in January 2021. It’s been quiet ever since.”

Bitcoin new entities chart (30-day EMA). Source: TXMC Trades/ Twitter

The data underscores how the average investor has all but forgotten Bitcoin, even as it swept new highs and institutional activity remained strong.

Interest levels from Google users adds to the trend, with search rates for “Bitcoin” worldwide at levels previously the norm in December 2020.

Worldwide Google search data for “Bitcoin.” Source: Google Trends

Miners, although being far from underwater at current price levels, are also getting less income from transaction fees than at any point since late 2020 — just 1.08%.

“This is an indicator that retail is not in yet… Although price is really similar to early 2021 When retail?” Twitter-based on-chain analyst Blockwise queried this weekend, presenting further Glassnode data.

Bitcoin miner transaction fee revenue percentage annotated chart (7-day MA). Source: Blockwise/ TwitterBe afraid, be “extremely” afraid

Bitcoin’s new year “extreme fear” continues — and if on-chain behavior is anything to go by, it’s set to remain the dominant sentiment force.

Related: Top 5 cryptocurrencies to watch this week: BTC, NEAR, ATOM, FTM, FTT

According to the Crypto Fear & Greed Index, which measures market sentiment via a basket of factors to assess just how traders are likely to act at a given price point, things have rarely looked more bleak.

Since late December, the Index has characterized the status quo as “extreme fear,” and so far, no price shifts have managed to alter it.

The same is true this week, with Fear & Greed at 21/100 — well within the “extreme fear” bracket.

Crypto Fear & Greed Index. Source: Alternative.me

Similarly, data covering BTC moved at a profit or loss shows timidity among transactors, with precious little profiteering to be seen.

Such behavior is common during price dips and was seen last year during the summer as BTC/USD fell and bottomed at around $30,000.

Bitcoin realized profit/ loss ratio annotated chart. Source: On-Chain College/ Twitter

“This is the real Fear & Greed Index,” popular Twitter account On-Chain College commented, uploading the data, which comes from Glassnode’s realized profit/ loss ratio indicator.




Cointelegraph By William Suberg

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BitPay Inc., one of the world’s most well-known crypto payments processors, has seen a shift in the type of digital assets used for purchases over the last year, according to a Bloomberg report.

According to BitPay, Bitcoin’s (BTC) usage at businesses that use its payment system fell last year to about 65% of processed transactions, down from 92% in 2020. Along with this change, Ether (ETH) represented 15% of all transactions, whereas other currencies such as Litecoin (LTC) and Dash have increased their portion.

Businesses have started using stablecoins more frequently for cross-border payments since November when crypto values had been depreciating. Consumers have also begun to use stablecoins because their value is constant, resulting in less risk in the notoriously volatile cryptocurrency market, as per the report.

The growing popularity of stablecoins has partly contributed to the use of alternative coins for payments. Dogecoin (DOGE), for example, became famous last year as the result of its followers, such as Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who announced on Friday that DOGE may be used to buy Tesla-related merchandise.

Related: Retailers to drive crypto payments adoption: Survey

The trend suggests that individuals are holding Bitcoin rather than spending it. Bitcoin’s prices increased by 60% in 2021, regardless of the fourth quarter’s volatility. According to BitPay, the majority of last year’s crypto transactions were in luxury items such as jewelry, watches and automobiles.

Transaction volumes for high-end items increased 31% in 2021 from 9% in 2020, according to Stephen Pair, CEO of BitPay. Payment volume rose by 57% across the board in 2021.




Cointelegraph By Arnold Kirimi

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If Bitcoin breaks above $45,500, select altcoins like NEAR, ATOM, FTM and FTT could turn bullish in the short-term.


Cointelegraph By Rakesh Upadhyay

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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 WeekBinance CEO CZ is the richest crypto billionaire at $96B: Bloomberg

Bloomberg has estimated Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao — also known as “CZ”— to be the 11th-richest person in the world at a net worth of around $96 billion, making him the wealthiest billionaire in crypto. 

However, Bloomberg’s tabulation excluded CZ’s personal holdings of crypto assets such as Bitcoin and Binance Coin, suggesting that the $96 billion could become much larger in the future. 

To make the list of the top 10 richest people, CZ will need to look under his sofa and find a spare $11 billion to surpass Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison. Topping the list is South African bad boy and Tesla co-founder Elon Musk, who has accumulated $263 billion on the back of the success of his heavily subsidized electric vehicle company.

 

Disney patents technology for a theme park metaverse

Disney has obtained a patent that will enable the creation of personalized interactive attractions for its theme park visitors. 

The technology could reportedly be used to develop licensed, headset-free augmented reality attractions, involving such features as personalized 3D effects displayed on physical spaces across its parks that correspond with visitors’ journeys to different locations. 

The patent, dubbed the “Virtual-world Simulator,” was filed in the United States. It appears the move is part of Disney’s broader push to enter the metaverse sector, with CEO Bob Chapek noting in a Q4 conference call last year: 

“We’ll be able to connect the physical and digital worlds even more closely, allowing for storytelling without boundaries in our own Disney metaverse.”

 

Billionaire investor Bill Miller puts 50% of net worth in Bitcoin

Famous investor Bill Miller has now put 50% of his net worth in Bitcoin, as well as major industry firms like Michael Saylor’s MicroStrategy and BTC mining firm Stronghold Digital Mining.

Miller was an early investor in Amazon, which he says still accounts for nearly 100% of the rest of his portfolio. He said he’s been gradually accumulating Bitcoin since the price hit $30,000 in mid-2021. 

The investor stated that he no longer considers himself just a “Bitcoin observer” but rather a real Bitcoin bull. Miller initially bought his first Bitcoin back in 2014 when BTC was trading around $200 and then purchased a “little bit more overtime” when it became $500.

 

Tonga to copy El Salvador bill making Bitcoin legal tender, says former MP

Former Tongan member of parliament Lord Fusitu’a outlined a bill for Bitcoin to become legal tender in the island nation. Fusitu’a stated that the country’s Bitcoin bill is almost “identical” to the one that was enacted in El Salvador. 

Fusitu’a, who currently serves as chairman of the Oceania chapter of the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption, outlined five points in the roadmap for the bill’s adoption, predicting that it will pass in parliament around September or October, and potentially be legislated by the end of 2022 if all goes to plan. 

In 2021, it was widely speculated that Tonga would become one of the next countries to adopt BTC as legal tender, and optimism appears to be high among Tongans in 2022.

 

Jack Dorsey announces Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund

Former Twitter CEO, Bitcoin maxi and Block founder Jack Dorsey announced plans to create a “Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund” with Chaincode Labs co-founder Alex Morcos and University of Sussex academic Martin White.

The announcement, shared via Dorsey’s mailing list, states that the fund will help provide a legal defense for Bitcoin developers, who are “currently the subject of multi-front litigation.” 

“The main purpose of this Fund is to defend developers from lawsuits regarding their activities in the Bitcoin ecosystem, including finding and retaining defense counsel, developing litigation strategy, and paying legal bills,” the announcement stated.

 

 

Winners and Losers

 

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $43,121, Ether (ETH) at $3,292 and XRP at $0.77. The total market cap is at $2.05 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Oasis Network (ROSE) at 47.47%, Secret (SCRT) at 32.23% and NEAR Protocol (NEAR) at 25.73%. 

The top three altcoin losers of the week are Loopring (LRC) at -14.23%, yearn.finance (YFI) at -13.52% and Ravencoin (RVN) at -13.01%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.

 

 

Most Memorable Quotations

 

“It’s more going to be an exercise in asking questions and seeking input from the public rather than taking a lot of positions on various issues, although we do take some positions.”

Jerome Powell, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, on the Fed’s upcoming digital currency report

 

“Centralization is antithetical to the ethos of DeFi and poses major security risks. Single points of failure can be exploited by dedicated hackers and malicious insiders alike.”

CertiK

 

“We’re already at a quarter of that number, so we’ve got 24% of Americans owning Bitcoin. It won’t be that much of a stretch for it to get to a third. Bitcoin is becoming more and more mainstream. People are hearing about it everywhere — it isn’t going away.”

Ric Edelman, founder of Edelman Financial Engines

 

“Wikipedia really can’t be in the business of deciding what counts as art or not, which is why putting NFTs, art or not, in their own list makes things a lot simpler.”

Jonas, Wikipedia editor

 

“Solana prioritizes scalability, but a relatively less decentralized and secure blockchain has tradeoffs, illustrated by several network performance issues since inception.”

Alkesh Shah, digital asset strategist for Bank of America

 

“The number of addresses with the minimum number of Bitcoin is actually growing compared to the number of whales. I think you get a profound retail trend everywhere in the world; people onboarding Bitcoin, they trust Bitcoin more and more. It’s really the people that will push the price up.” 

Pascal Gauthier, CEO of Ledger

 

“Subsequent employee surveys made it clear: recharge weeks work.”

L.J. Brock, chief people officer at Coinbase

 

“Most cryptocurrency investors are ready to pay tax but are concerned whether their move will violate the Revenue Code.”

Suppakrit Boonsat, president of the Thai Digital Asset Association

 

Prediction of the Week 

 

Traders say Bitcoin run to $44K may be a relief bounce, citing a repeat of December’s ‘nuke’

Bitcoin had somewhat of a rocky trading week, as the flagship cryptocurrency fell to a price of $39,675 on Monday, according to Cointelegraph’s BTC price index. BTC found itself priced at $44,315 by Wednesday. The asset hit $44,448 on Thursday before subsequently dropping later in the week. 

Although Bitcoin’s price increased on Tuesday, its Wednesday rally came on the same day it was reported that U.S. inflation rose at an annual pace of 7% in December, the highest in 40 years.  

Even though Bitcoin’s price rallied in the days following Monday’s drop below $40,000, the potential for further downward action remains a possibility as of Wednesday, according to widely-followed Twitter personality Material Scientist.

“Remainder of bids was just pulled,” one of the tweets stated. “Either they’re done accumulating and use liquidity to chase now, or we see the same thing as in late November (pulled bids + stacked asks a few days later).”

In the case of Bitcoin trading, bids refer to buyer demand seen on exchange order books. Following its $68,969 peak in November 2021, BTC declined notably through the rest of the month, falling down to $41,614 by early December.

 

 

FUD of the Week LCX loses $6.8M in a hot wallet compromise over Ethereum blockchain

Liechtenstein-based crypto exchange LCX confirmed on Sunday that one of its hot wallets was compromised after the platform temporarily suspended all deposits and withdrawals. 

The hack was initially highlighted by blockchain security firm PeckShield, which spotted a suspicious transfer of ERC-20 tokens from LCX to an unknown Ethereum wallet. The compromise was then promptly confirmed by LCX, which announced that several crypto tokens were compromised, including Ether, USD Coin (USDC), Sandbox (SAND) and its native LCX token. 

According to an investigation by PeckShield, LCX lost a total of around $6.8 million via the hot wallet hack.

 

FTC issues public warning about new crypto ATM scam

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) posted an alert earlier this week regarding a new crypto ATM scam that involves nefarious QR codes. 

The FTC stated that the scam starts with fraudsters impersonating figures, such as public officials, law enforcement agents, or potential dating partners on dating apps, who all spin various fables to dupe the victim into sending crypto.

If the victim falls for the fake story, they are directed to withdraw cash and then head to a crypto ATM and purchase some crypto. Once they purchase the crypto, the fraudster shares a QR code with the victim that diverts the funds back to the scammer upon scanning.    

“Here’s the main thing to know: nobody from the government, law enforcement, utility company or prize promoter will ever tell you to pay them with cryptocurrency. If someone does, it’s a scam, every time,” the FTC said.

 

Pakistan’s central bank reportedly wants to ban crypto

According to reports from local media outlets, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) wants to ban all crypto transactions in Pakistan, arguing that assets such as Bitcoin are illegal and shouldn’t be used for trade.

Pakistan’s Sindh High Court reportedly held a hearing related to the legal status of crypto in the country, with several Pakistani authorities, including the SBP, calling for a ban on the sector via a document submitted to the court. 

Alongside the usual tropes of investor protection and money laundering and terrorism concerns, the document urged the court to follow the model of countries such as China, whose government has stamped out the local crypto sector to pave way for a spawn of satan central bank digital currency (CBDC).

 

 

Best Cointelegraph FeaturesQuickSwap founder: L2s are the path to mass adoption

“If I’m a normal user and I want to do a small trade, I cannot do it on Ethereum.”

Green and gold: The crypto projects saving the planet

As the world argued about the ethics of crypto, these projects changed the world for the better during 2021.

Volcanos, Bitcoin and remittances: A Tongan lord plans for financial security

A former lawmaker from the island nation wants to use Bitcoin to secure his country’s financial security.


Cointelegraph By Editorial Staff

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Throughout 2021, the Brazilian cryptocurrency market managed to distance itself from the police pages and finally win acceptance with the general public, whether in the financial market or even in the greatest national passion: soccer.

Last year, Bitcoin (BTC) acted as a strong alternative to the Brazilian real that ended 2021 by breaking negative records and reaching a devaluation of 6.5% by December, making it the 38th worst currency in the world.

In a year of ups and downs for Bitcoin, the biggest cryptocurrency hit a bottom of 167,000 real in January and soared along with global markets to 355,000 real in May. Faced with Bitcoin’s dip, the BRL/BTC pair was stuck below 200,000 reals until August, when it began to rise to a new historic high of 367,000 real on Nov. 8.

Faced with the need for economic protection, Brazilians turned to crypto. 10 million Brazilians now participate in the crypto market, according to CoinMarketCap.

In traditional financial markets, the Brazilian Stock Exchange debuted exchange-traded funds (ETFs) linked to Bitcoin and Ether (ETH). There are already five ETFs listed on B3, some of them positioned among the most profitable in the entire Brazilian stock market in 2021.

The Central Bank of Brazil also announced new developments in the digital real, a central bank digital currency (CBDC), which could be launched as early as 2023. The Brazilian Central Bank also announced that it will continue working to incorporate blockchain technology into its services by carrying out a series of tests through a dedicated team at the monetary authority.

In the Federal Congress, discussions on the regulation of cryptocurrencies in Brazil dragged on throughout the year, until in December, federal deputies approved Bill 2303/15, which establishes criteria for the regulation of cryptocurrencies in the country. The bill will be further discussed in 2022 in the House’s plenary session and later in the Federal Senate.

There was tension among major players in the cryptocurrency market in Brazil in 2021, but also some good news. 

Brazilian exchanges went head-to-head with major crypto exchange Binance. Exchanges around the country worked with the Brazilian Cryptoeconomy Association to comply Binance to follow rules established by the Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Revenue Service and the central bank. The global exchange is still negotiating with Brazilian market regulators and the country’s financial authorities.

Related: ‘Mecca of mining’: Brazil considers zero tax on green Bitcoin mining

On the other hand, Brazil’s largest exchange, Mercado Bitcoin (MB) — today one of Latin America’s crypto unicorns — expanded its operations in the country, entering the sporting world once and for all. MB also worked alongside Chiliz to make fan tokens more accessible to Brazilian fans, a novelty that was adopted by national football giants such as Corinthians, São Paulo, Internacional, Atlético-MG and Flamengo.

The nonfungible token (NFT) market also reached Brazil with wide adoption and presence of Brazilian players in play-to-earn games, collectible platforms and even in the arts, being adopted by visual artists and renowned names in Brazilian music such as André Abujamra and Zeca Baleiro.

For the next year, we can expect even more major Brazilian and Latin American firms to enter the cryptocurrency market. The Brazilian Stock Exchange hopes to expand its offering of cryptocurrency-linked investments, with experts targeting decentralized finance (DeFi), NFTs and the Metaverse.

It’s also worth remembering that 2022 is an election year in a country that has been polarized since 2016, with the Bolsonaro government suffering from low popularity and being defined by social tension. The elections could affect not only the direction of the digital real but also the future of the Brazilian economy, including cryptocurrency markets.


Cointelegraph By Lucas Caram

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The Bitcoin (BTC) mining business is bigger than ever at current price levels, and new data shows just how unlikely a mass miner sell-off really is.

As noted by popular Twitter account @venturefounder on Jan. 14, even at $42,000, the BTC/USD trading pair is around 20% above miners’ cost price.

Miner capitulation behind “worst” BTC price dips

Despite falling a full $27,000 below all-time highs, BTC is more enticing than ever for miners. Hash rate, an estimate of the total processing power dedicated to mining, reached new all-time highs this week.

Those concerned that a fresh BTC price dip could pressure miners into selling, meanwhile, received fresh assurances via data covering how much BTC/USD should trade at for them to break even.

Referencing the BTC production cost indicator from Charles Edwards, CEO of asset manager Capriole, venturefounder revealed that the breakeven point currently stands at $34,000.

“The worst dumps Bitcoin ever had were due to miners capitulation (December 2018, March 2020), when BTC fell below production costs, it is at risk for miner capitulation,” he added in comments.

“BTC was at risk for miner capitulation at $30k in May. The current production cost is $34k, 20% below current price.”

Bitcoin production cost annotated chart (screenshot). Source: @venturefounder/Twitter

As such, there is no reason for miners to sell thanks to the profitability — as well as future perspective — of their operations.

In a Medium post about his indicator from 2019, Edwards additionally noted that transaction fees awarded to miners give them an additional cushion against spot price incursions below production cost.

“Historically, the electrical cost to produce a Bitcoin has represented a price floor in the Bitcoin market price,” another insight reads.

Mining shrugs off spot price moves this year

As Cointelegraph reported, miners are indeed voting with their wallets as BTC consolidates below $50,000.

Related: Bitcoin cycle is far from over and miners are in it for the long haul: Fidelity report

Rather than selling, miners en masse have been accumulating BTC more this month and last than during the highs.

This speaks both to a healthy balance sheet and resolve over the future — fears of economic difficulties on the horizon are not currently weighing on the mining sector.

Bitcoin hash rate chart. Source: Blockchain

Going forward, current worst-case scenario estimates among well-known analysts foresee a BTC price floor no lower than $30,000.




Cointelegraph By William Suberg

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