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Δευτέρα 8 Αυγούστου 2022

Renowned Investor Jim Rogers Warns Governments Want to Control Crypto — ‘They Want to Regulate Everything’

Renowned Investor Jim Rogers Warns Governments Want to Control Crypto — 'They Want to Regulate Everything'

Veteran investor Jim Rogers, who co-founded the Quantum Fund with billionaire investor George Soros, has warned about cryptocurrency, stating that “if and when all our money is on our computer, it’s going to be government money.” Nonetheless, he noted that his wife invests in crypto.

Jim Rogers’ Crypto Warning

Famed investor Jim Rogers shared his view about cryptocurrency in an interview with Bloomberg, published last week. Rogers is George Soros’ former business partner who co-founded the Quantum Fund and Soros Fund Management.

“A lot of people I know are investing in crypto and having fun and making money. Many have already disappeared and have gone to zero,” he began, elaborating:

My wife invests in crypto of all things, but I don’t invest in them because the bulls say they’re going to be money, and my answer to that is, if and when all our money is on our computer, it’s going to be government money.

Rogers proceeded to explain that governments will not allow other currencies to compete with their currencies.

Pointing to his phone as an example of electronic money, the veteran investor opined: “When the U.S. government says, ‘okay, this is money now,’ and every government is working on crypto money, they’re not going to say: ‘This is money, but if you want to use that [other] money, you can use that money.'”

He stressed:

That’s not the way bureaucrats think. That’s not the way politicians think. They want control. They want to regulate everything.

“In my view, if they [cryptocurrencies] are just trading vehicles, fine, have at it. [But] I’m not going to trade, I’m not doing it,” he concluded.

Rogers was asked if anything would change his mind about investing in crypto. He admitted that if things change then he will also have to change. For example, “If suddenly the euro is all denominated in crypto, well then I have to change,” he said. However, Rogers noted that he doesn’t see it happening.

This was not the first time that the Quantum Fund co-founder warned about governments coming after cryptocurrency. In April last year, he said governments could ban cryptocurrencies. “If cryptocurrencies become successful, most governments will outlaw them, because they don’t want to lose their monopoly,” Rogers stressed. He also previously said, “virtual currencies beyond the influence of the government will be eliminated.”

In addition, he warned last month that more bear markets are coming and the next one will be “the worst” in his lifetime. Noting that many stocks will go down 90%, he cautioned that investors will lose a lot of money. He also predicted the end of the U.S. dollar, fueled by the Russia-Ukraine war.

Do you agree with Jim Rogers? Let us know in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Nayib Bukele Attributes Tourism Recovery in El Salvador to Bitcoin, Surf, and Crime Reduction

Nayib Bukele Attributes Tourism Recovery in El Salvador to Bitcoin, Surf, and Crime Reduction

Nayib Bukele, the president of El Salvador, declared that the speedy recovery of tourism in the country had to do with three elements, including surfing, bitcoin, and overall crime reduction. El Salvador was one of the 15 countries that managed to take their tourism incomes to pre-pandemic numbers according to data from the World Tourism Organization.

Nayib Bukele States International Tourism Growth Is Powered by Bitcoin in El Salvador

Nayib Bukele, the president of El Salvador and promoter of the adoption of bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender in the country, shared his thoughts about the growth of the tourism income in the Salvadoran country. Bukele stated that this growth was the consequence of three key factors: bitcoin, the promotion of surf, and the reduction of crime.

In a tweet, the president stated:

Only a handful of countries have been able to recover its tourism to pre-pandemic levels. And that’s international tourism, so the reasons behind it are mostly bitcoin and surf.

El Salvador was recently included in a list of countries whose tourism income has returned to pre-pandemic levels. According to the World Tourism Organization, El Salvador has managed to grow its tourism income by 6% when compared to 2019.

This report is consistent with what the authorities have been reporting about the effect that the inclusion of bitcoin in the country since it was declared legal tender. In February, Morena Valdez, minister of tourism in the country stated that the tourism industry had risen 30% since this event.

Statistics further show that El Salvador’s crime and homicide rate has dropped significantly since 2020. Moreover, in terms of surf, the El Salvador is home to some of the top rated waves in the world.

National Tourism Also Growing

However, the president also made reference to the growth in national tourism, stating:

But internal tourism is growing even more, mainly because of our crackdown on gangs.

Bukele’s government was criticized heavily due to the measure sit has taken to stop gang-related crime, declaring a state of emergency that resulted in more than 9,000 individuals being detained last April. However, Bukele claims this has pushed the growth of the national tourism industry.

To support his arguments, Bukele also linked the Google Mobility Report, a compendium of data that shows the change in the number of visits that are happening to certain places. The report shows that the visits to retail and recreation places, grocery stores and pharmacies, and parks have all grown in the last three months.

The government is also expecting new bitcoin investments that will bring more bitcoin supporters to the country. Milena Mayorga, ambassador of El Salvador in the US, recently announced that Bank Of The Future, a cryptocurrency investment platform, was going to invest $6 billion in the country.

What do you think about Nayib Bukele’s view of the influence of Bitcoin on the growth of the tourism industry in El Salvador? Tell us in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Κυριακή 7 Αυγούστου 2022

Binance CEO Warns ‘We Could Disable Wazirx Wallets’ — Advises Investors to Transfer Funds to Binance

Binance CEO Warns 'We Could Disable Wazirx Wallets' — Advises Investors to Transfer Funds to Binance

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) has warned that his company could “disable Wazirx wallets on a tech level,” advising anyone with funds on the Indian crypto exchange to transfer them to Binance. The warning followed numerous tweets by CZ and Wazirx’s founder regarding whether Binance acquired Wazirx.

Binance’s Warning: Transfer Your Funds

The conflict between global crypto exchange Binance and Indian crypto exchange Wazirx has deepened. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) tweeted Friday, advising anyone with funds on Wazirx to transfer them to Binance. He warned: “We could disable Wazirx wallets on a tech level.”

The dispute between Binance and Wazirx began when India’s Directorate of Enforcement (ED) froze the bank assets of Wazirx as part of its money laundering investigation.

Following the ED’s announcement, Binance’s CEO quickly denied that his company had acquired Wazirx — almost three years after the two exchanges announced the acquisition.

While Zhao claimed that the acquisition of Wazirx “was never completed,” Wazirx founder Nischal Shetty disagreed and maintained that his exchange was indeed acquired by Binance.

Binance vs. Wazirx: Who Owns What

Attempting to prove that Binance owns Wazirx, Shetty tweeted that Binance owns Wazirx’s domain name, has root access to its Amazon AWS web hosting servers, has all the crypto assets, and receives all the crypto profits.

However, CZ argued: “The Wazirx founding team maintained control of the operations of the platform. We (Binance) were never given data or control of users, KYC, etc.” Responding to Shetty’s tweet about Binance owning Wazirx, Zhao stressed:

We do NOT have control of the trading system. You just gave the AWS login, no source code, no deployment capability. You also retained access to the AWS account, source code, deploy, etc.

In a follow-up tweet, CZ claimed that Wazirx has been uncooperative with Binance, adding that the exchange appears to be uncooperative with the ED as well.

Regarding the ED’s investigation, Shetty tweeted that Zanmai Labs, the entity that owns Wazirx, “has been cooperating with ED for over 7 days and has submitted all the required data.” Wazirx also tweeted:

We have been fully cooperating with the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for several days and have responded to all their queries fully and transparently. We do not agree with the allegations in the ED press release. We are evaluating our further plan of action.

What do you think actually happened between Binance and Wazirx? Let us know in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Shark Tank Star Kevin O’Leary Buys the Bitcoin Dip — Says Crypto ‘Desperately Needs Policy’

Shark Tank Star Kevin O'Leary Buys the Bitcoin Dip — Says Crypto 'Desperately Needs Policy'

Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary, aka Mr. Wonderful, says he has bought the dip during the recent cryptocurrency market sell-off. He added: “Now crypto itself desperately needs policy. It needs regulation.”

Kevin O’Leary Buys the Dip, Comments on Bitcoin Price

Kevin O’Leary shared his crypto market outlook and investment strategy during this bear market in an interview with Stansberry Research, published Thursday.

“I see bitcoin sort of testing $20,000 all the time, getting a lot of resistance,” he said when asked about the state of the cryptocurrency, adding that BTC seems to be holding between $20K and $23K. “Still very profitable for bitcoin miners that are currently mining at about $7,000 per coin at scale,” he opined.

“There has been a knee-jerk reaction against bitcoin miners lately because of ESG [environmental, social, and corporate governance] concerns but they’re also self-correcting by getting into nuclear and hydropower, which you know is plentiful in some countries like Norway,” O’Leary explained.

The Shark Tank star continued:

Now crypto itself desperately needs policy. It needs regulation.

O’Leary explained: “There was a bill just two weeks ago that was contemplated being pushed through, not on bitcoin, just stablecoins as payment systems. And as you know that’s been a very volatile area.”

Noting that the bill “has been stalled for September,” he stressed: “I think there’s a 50-50 chance that we will have policy on basically stablecoins tied to the U.S. dollar.”

Mr. Wonderful detailed:

Let me explain specifically why I think it’s going to happen. There is a turf war going on between the SEC and every other regulator as regards to crypto, NFTs, tokens — all of this stuff.

“The smart regulators, the policymakers are saying: ‘Wait a second, let’s take one outcome. Let’s just do payment systems, just like a credit card, a visa card, or a money market fund, which has very limited flexibility in terms of what you can hold it.’ Basically, T-bills and dollar-for-dollar cash — same thing with a payment system like a stablecoin,” the Shark Tank star noted, adding:

If that policy comes down. Let’s say it gets done in September. That’s a signal to the market that we’re starting to break open the logjam on policy-making, and I’m very very optimistic.

O’Leary was also asked about his own crypto investments and what strategy he has been using during this bear market.

“We took a hit. We were at 20% and then it grew up to 23%, then it went down to 16% of the portfolio,” he shared. “It was really volatile but I’ve always said you’re going to get this volatility in an asset industry that’s not regulated because there’s no institutional bid so probably at the low we’re at 15%. We lost 40% of the value and now we’ve come back up [in] some projects. They haven’t all come back at the same pace.”

Naming bitcoin, ethereum, solana, and polygon, which he called “the big players, the big market cap names,” O’Leary revealed:

In some cases, we doubled down. We took advantage of the extreme volatility and the large-cap names like ETH and bitcoin. Why not add to the position if you’re going to stay long.

Mr. Wonderful noted that the crypto asset class “is not correlated with anything as people thought,” including inflation.

What do you think about the comments by Kevin O’Leary? Let us know in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Elon Musk Accuses Twitter of Fraud in Countersuit Over $44B Deal — Twitter Subpoenas Binance and Other Firms

Elon Musk Accuses Twitter of Fraud in Countersuit Over $44B Deal — Twitter Subpoenas Binance and Other firms

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has accused Twitter of fraud in his countersuit against the social media company. Twitter filed a lawsuit against the billionaire to force him to go through with the $44 billion deal to buy the platform. “The Musk parties bring their counterclaims for breach of contract and rescission on the basis of Twitter’s fraud.”

Elon Musk’s Legal Battle With Twitter Intensifies

Tesla and Spacex CEO Elon Musk has filed a counter-lawsuit against Twitter after the social media giant sued him for terminating the $44 billion deal to buy the platform. Musk’s countersuit, filed Thursday and published Friday, states:

This action arises out of Twitter’s misrepresentations to the Musk parties regarding the condition of the company and the ‘key metrics’ Twitter uses to evaluate the number of users on its platform.

“Twitter was miscounting the number of false and spam accounts on its platform, as part of its scheme to mislead investors about the company’s prospects by focusing on its purported hundreds of millions of mDAU,” Musk alleged. The social media company defines monetizable daily active users (mDAU) as “users who logged in and accessed Twitter on any given day through Twitter.com or Twitter applications that are able to show ads.”

The countersuit describes: “After signing the merger agreement, however, the Musk parties learned troubling facts that have called into serious doubt Twitter’s representations.”

“While Twitter asks the court to force the Musk parties to close over Twitter’s misrepresentations and contractual breaches, the Musk parties seek relief from the grave inequity of such a result,” Musk’s lawyers noted, elaborating:

Accordingly, the Musk parties bring their counterclaims for breach of contract and rescission on the basis of Twitter’s fraud.

Twitter filed a series of rebuttals to Musk’s countersuit Thursday, accusing the Tesla CEO of cherry-picking numbers and misrepresenting how its online ad system works.

Bret Taylor, a Twitter board member, tweeted in response to Musk’s allegations:

Twitter filed a response to Mr. Musk’s counterclaims. His claims are factually inaccurate, legally insufficient, and commercially irrelevant. We look forward to the trial in the Delaware Court of Chancery.

Twitter has subpoenaed crypto exchange Binance and more than a dozen of Musk’s advisers and would-be lenders as part of its lawsuit against the Tesla CEO. In May, Musk revealed that he had secured funding from 18 companies to purchase Twitter, including Binance.

The other companies and individuals subpoenaed by Twitter included Factorial Funds, Benefit Street, Bandera Partners, Founders Fund Growth II Management, Citadel CEO Ken Griffin, Tesla, and Spacex. The subpoenas demand that they hand over documents and communications that either support or refute Musk’s accusation that Twitter has under-reported the number of fake or spam accounts on its platform.

Musk officially terminated the $44 billion deal to buy the social media giant last month, alleging that “Twitter is in material breach of multiple provisions of that agreement.” The billionaire’s lawyer noted that Twitter made “materially inaccurate representations,” particularly regarding the company’s claim that fewer than 5% of its mDAU are false or spam accounts.

Twitter responded by suing Musk last month to force the Tesla boss to go through with the buyout deal, claiming that “Musk refuses to honor his obligations to Twitter and its stockholders because the deal he signed no longer serves his personal interests.” The case is scheduled to go to trial on Oct. 17.

Do you think Twitter or Elon Musk will win this case? Let us know in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Alleged BTC-e Operator Alexander Vinnik in US Custody After Immediate Extradition From Greece

Alleged BTC-e Operator Alexander Vinnik in US Custody After Immediate Extradition From Greece

Russian IT specialist Alexander Vinnik, accused of owning and running the infamous crypto exchange BTC-e, has been handed over to the U.S. This week, Greek authorities proceeded with the extradition, after his return from France, despite Vinnik’s defense protesting the move and calling the case a “judicial, diplomatic and humanitarian scandal.”

Vinnik Appears in San Francisco Federal Court to Face Money Laundering Charges

The presumed co-founder and operator of the notorious crypto exchange BTC-e, Alexander Vinnik, was extradited from Greece to the United States on Thursday. The Russian national is facing charges in the Northern District of California and has already appeared in federal court in San Francisco, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Friday. Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the department’s Criminal Division, was quoted as stating:

After more than five years of litigation, Russian national Alexander Vinnik was extradited to the United States yesterday to be held accountable for operating BTC-e, a criminal cryptocurrency exchange, which laundered more than $4 billion of criminal proceeds.

The 42-year-old Vinnik was arrested while on vacation in the Greek city of Thessaloniki in the summer of 2017 on a U.S. warrant. He had been charged by American prosecutors in a 21-count superseding indictment in January of that year. Greece approved an extradition request filed by the United States but sent him first to France in December 2019, under a European arrest warrant.

A French court sentenced the Russian crypto entrepreneur to five years in prison for money laundering, and he recently served his term, taking into account his pre-trial detention. In France, he was also charged with identity theft and extortion. In July, U.S. authorities withdrew a request to get the Russian directly from France in an obvious attempt to speed up his transfer through Greece, which had already approved his extradition to the United States.

According to the U.S. indictment, the now-defunct BTC-e was a “significant cybercrime and online money laundering entity that allowed its users to trade in bitcoin with high levels of anonymity and developed a customer base heavily reliant on criminal activity.” It alleges the exchange facilitated global cybercrime transactions, receiving proceeds from a wide range of crimes, such as the Mt Gox hack, ransomware scams, and even drug trade.

BTC-e and Vinnik were charged with one count of operation of an unlicensed money service business in the U.S., and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering as well. The Russian is also facing 17 counts of money laundering and two counts of engaging in unlawful monetary transactions. The Justice Department noted his platform had no system for know-your-customer verification and no anti-money laundering program as required by federal law.

Russia, Lawyer Brand Vinnik’s US Extradition ‘Abduction’ and ‘Violent Disappearance’

Speaking to the Russian news agency Tass, Vinnik’s French lawyer Frederic Belot confirmed his defendant had been handed over to US custody, upon his return from France under the decision by the Investigation Chamber of the Paris Court of Appeals from Thursday morning. “He was immediately transferred to another plane that flew to the United States. The plane landed in Boston and then flew to San Francisco,” Belot explained.

“Alexander Vinnik, who should be free based on three decisions by the French justice, was transferred yesterday as a prisoner to Greece and there he was literally ‘loaded’ on a private plane to the USA, without being allowed, as he requested and while seeking asylum, to have access to an interpreter, to me as his lawyer,” Zoe Konstantopoulou, who has been representing him in Greece and France, said quoted by the Greek newspaper Ethnos.

Alleged BTC-e Operator Alexander Vinnik in US Custody After Immediate Extradition From Greece

Konstantopoulou recently shared her fears that the Russian will be held by the U.S. as a “hostage” of the ongoing military conflict in NATO-supported Ukraine, where Moscow is waging a full-scale war since late February, presented as a “special military operation” in defense of the Russian-speaking population. Western governments have chosen to ignore Russia’s own requests for Vinnik’s extradition.

The IT expert, who has denied the U.S. allegations and maintained his innocence, has previously expressed his will to return to his homeland and appear before court there. In Russia he is charged with embezzlement of more than 600,000 rubles (close to $10,000) and “fraud in the field of computer information” for 750 million rubles ($12.3 million).

While the U.S. Justice Department thanked the Greek government and justice ministry “for all their efforts in securing the defendant’s transfer to the United States,” the spokesperson of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Maria Zakharova stated that Moscow is “outraged by the unfriendly actions of the Greek authorities” and accused Washington of conducting a “real hunt for Russian citizens,” calling Vinnik’s hasty extradition an “abduction.” While not mentioned in the DOJ announcement, the owner of BTC-e is suspected of having collaborated with Russian intelligence, too.

In her comments, Zoe Konstantopoulou described the case as a multi-year “judicial, diplomatic, intergovernmental scandal,” while referring to his extradition as a “violent disappearance from Greek territory” which “constitutes a Mafia method and a criminal act… a serious violation of international law and Greek legislation,” committed with the participation of two foreign states. Vinnik sought asylum in Greece and his defense team has been trying to also secure a release on humanitarian grounds. His wife died in 2020 and their two sons are now growing up without parents.

What are your expectations about Alexander Vinnik’s trial in the United States? Tell us in the comments section below.



from Bitcoin News

Σάββατο 6 Αυγούστου 2022

Bitcoin Price Outlook for August: BTC Faces Some Important Tests in the Coming Weeks

Bitcoin Price Outlook for August: BTC Faces Some Important Tests in the Coming Weeks

Exactly one month ago today, bitcoin was trading below $20,000 per unit as crypto markets continued to react to growing levels of inflation and central bank policy. However, a month later, the world’s leading crypto token has moved above $23,000, despite consumer prices rising to multi-decade highs. So with this in mind, where could bitcoin potentially be heading in the next few weeks?

Current Market Status

July saw bitcoin (BTC) mostly consolidate between a floor of $18,900, and a ceiling of $23,600, as volatility in crypto markets was higher in anticipation of the Fed’s potential 75 basis point (bps) hike.

Since then, the Federal Reserve has hiked in back-to-back sessions, increasing interest rates by 0.75% in July and August.

This came as inflation in the United States moved to its highest level in over four decades, and with growing concerns over a pending global recession.

Despite this, bitcoin has quietly moved higher, as the uncertainty which is and was plaguing the market has started to slowly fade.

Although concerns over the magnitude of a recession remain, traders who were concerned about the course of action the Fed would take, have seen some of these questions answered.

As a result of this, price strength in BTC has mostly risen in the past few weeks, with the relative strength index (RSI) going from a reading of 29 on July 5, to now tracking at 54.37.

August Outlook

As of writing this analysis, BTC/USD is currently trading at $23,019.32, just hours removed from the latest non-farm payrolls report.

After concerns of a potential slowdown in the U.S. labor market, payrolls for July came in at 528,000 last month, versus expectations of 250,000.

This could act as a positive for bitcoin bulls, who have taken a risk-off approach in recent months, on concerns over a potential global recession amidst the inflation crisis.

Although these concerns will continue, investors now have more reason to be bullish, as the landscape of the market begins to slowly shift.

This week has seen gold rise to a one-month high versus the dollar, with WTI crude falling to its lowest point since before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

BTC now faces some important tests in the coming weeks, with the main one being if it has enough momentum to surge past a key and much higher ceiling of $24,700.

If it is able to do so, bitcoin could race above $25,000, with bulls then positioned for a move closer to $30,000 in September.

What price do you expect bitcoin to be trading at in one month’s time? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.



from Bitcoin News

Renowned Investor Jim Rogers Warns Governments Want to Control Crypto — ‘They Want to Regulate Everything’

Veteran investor Jim Rogers, who co-founded the Quantum Fund with billionaire investor George Soros, has warned about cryptocurrency, stati...