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It’s been a big week in the world of crypto, with several significant news stories breaking.
From Elon Musk’s latest antics, Litecoin being delisted from five of the biggest exchanges, and Bitcoin continuing its decline, there’s plenty to catch up on. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the biggest crypto news stories of the week.
On Monday, Bitcoin (BTC) reached a low it hadn’t seen since the early pandemic days. This low dipped below its 2017 all-time high of $19,600 USD. On the heels of an unprecedented high—nearly $68,000 USD—in late 2021 this has left many investors unsettled. While it has rallied, albeit marginally, to just over $20,000 USD in the past few days, many predict a “dead cat bounce”: A slight increase before a further decline. That’s not to say it’s time to despair or worse—panic sell—just yet.
Historically speaking, Bitcoin has had several dramatic crashes in the past. In each of these instances, Bitcoin has dropped and rallied to all new highs. At the onset of the pandemic, BTC dropped 37% in a single day. 2017 saw BTC reach an all-time high of $19,497 USD before dropping to $13,831 in just six days. And, at crypto’s absolute infancy, it saw a 99.9% crash in a single day: from $32 USD to just $0.01.
So, while the crypto community waits with bated breath to see where Bitcoin will land in the coming days and weeks, it’s important to remember that Bitcoin has a habit of bouncing back.
In other news, a consortium of Russian technology companies has developed their own blockchain-based system that could potentially replace SWIFT. For those unfamiliar, SWIFT is an international network that provides financial institutions with a secure way to send and receive information.
Since their exclusion from SWIFT at the onset of the Russia-Ukrainian war, this system is designed as an alternative payment system.
The new system allows Russia to pay in its native currency, the Ruble, for imports. Ideally, it will also enable foreign adopters to pay in their localised currency for Russian imports.
Such technology is a far cry from January of 2021 when the Russian Central Bank called to ban the use of all cryptocurrencies. The pivot to blockchain technology and adoption of it in such a populous nation will definitely be one to keep an eye on.
Another crypto-related tweet by none other than Elon Musk has once again got the blockchain world in a bit of a tizzy. It appears the Tesla billionaire is being sued over his tweets about Dogecoin. A class-action lawsuit has been filed against the billionaire CEO alleging that he has been involved in a scheme designed to manipulate the price of the asset.
The suit specifically takes issue with a February 2021 tweet in which Musk stated “if major Dogecoin holders sell most of their coins, it will get my full support. Too much concentration is the only real issue IMO.” The plaintiff argues that this—and other tweets by Musk about Dogecoin—constituted securities fraud.
Regardless of the lawsuit, Musk continues to be outspoken (or out-tweeted) in his support of Dogecoin. It’s certainly a hill, but not one he’s likely to die on if history is any indication.
This isn’t the first time Musk has been in hot water over his crypto tweets. In 2018, he was sued for tweeting about taking Tesla private and later settled with the SEC. It remains to be seen how this latest lawsuit will play out, but, as always, crypto Twitter will have plenty to say about it in the meantime, such as…
In other crypto news, Litecoin has been delisted from five of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea.
Each of the exchanges made the announcement simultaneously following the rollout of Litecoin’s Mimblewimble upgrade. This is a privacy-focused decentralised protocol that gives traders the option to make their transactions confidential.
In line with South Korea’s laws, exchanges are unable to list “privacy coins” in an attempt to prevent money laundering. Though the update isn’t solely focused on privacy, and also places an emphasis on scalability and speed, the exchanges seem unified in not willing to take the potential legal risk.
And finally, in more heartening crypto news, a Sydney-based company has launched a $500 million investment to accelerate the development of Web 3.0 games.
Web 3.0 is the next generation of decentralised applications that allows for true ownership of digital assets. All decision-making aspects of the game aren’t designated by a central authority but rather by the community of players.
Immutable is perhaps best known as the company behind the crypto collectible card game Gods, Unchained, and the Ethereum-based scaling solution for NFT’s, Immutable X.
Unlike traditional gaming, Web 3.0 games allow players to own their in-game assets and use them however they please—whether that’s selling, gifting, or even just holding on to them as a collector’s item. Web 3.0 gaming adopts a play-to-earn model, meaning that players can generate real value from their gameplay.
The $500 million investment will go towards funding the development of these games as well as the Immutable infrastructure that supports them. The move signals a shift in focus from traditional games to those built on blockchain technology.
TL;DR? To sum it all up, crypto has had its lows and highs this week, much like any other week.
It’s important to remember, crypto is volatile and has a history of its crashes being particularly jarring. On the flipside, following every crash in Bitcoin’s history, there has been surge in price. Investments in Web 3.0 tech and a new blockchain-based international transaction system only serve to reinforce the growing shift to digital currency and assets, and we’re excited to see what the coming weeks will bring.