15 January

The mayor of Rio de Janeiro said Thursday he plans to allocate 1% of Brazil’s second-most populous city’s treasury reserves to cryptocurrencies. The Brazilian city also plans to give discounts on tax payments made with bitcoin.

We are going to launch Crypto Rio and invest 1% of the treasury in cryptocurrency.”

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“After a rocky start to the year, bitcoin (BTC) appears to have stabilized this week, and some analysts are predicting that prices could be set to rise. Prices are likely to rebound from the current level around $42,000 though will remain within the $40,000-$60,000 band, said Gavin Smith, CEO of Panxora.

This would set bitcoin up for a move to new highs later in the year. We predict the catalyst for this move to be stubbornly high inflation numbers coupled with a continuation of negative real interest rates.

If bitcoin can break $45,500, we could see another sharp move higher as belief starts to grow that the worst of the rout is behind it.

[Negative real rates] – a function of ultra-loose monetary policies put in place by central banks around the world – encourages risk-taking since investors are effectively losing value by holding bonds and other fixed-income instruments.

Whether bitcoin is seen as a risk-on asset or as a clear inflation hedge is dependent on geography. In developed economies, bitcoin is very much seen as a risk-on asset and is being traded based on macroeconomic developments, such as inflation and central-bank stimulus programs. In developing economies like Turkey, Brazil and Argentina, however, there is a clear inflation-hedge play.

As a result of this, direction is not clear and we fully expect unpredictable, choppy moves in a broadly sideways range for the time being.

Looking at the price of bitcoin in the long term, Deane predicts continued growth, development and adoption on a global scale.

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The ability to trade stock on FTX.US might be only months away, according to a tweet from the exchange’s president. Bitstamp USA has also signaled it’s looking at stocks.

Robinhood is approaching the market from the opposite direction to the two exchanges, beginning with stocks and moving into crypto. It’s been adding new features to its crypto service for some time and plans to roll out the beta version of its crypto wallet feature this month, which will enable users to withdraw cryptocurrency from the platform.”

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“The coming year is likely to see crypto-related crime decrease to an ever-smaller share of the overall industry as law enforcement takes greater advantage of the transparency provided by blockchain technology, says Kim Grauer, director of research at Chainalysis.

According to a January 6 report from Chainalysis, the growth of legitimate cryptocurrency usage is “far outpacing the growth of criminal usage.” The share of cryptocurrency transaction volume associated with illicit activity has never been lower, representing just 0.15% of transaction volume in 2021.

Law enforcement wins continue to demonstrate to bad actors that cryptocurrency’s inherent transparency makes it an undesirable means for transferring illicit funds. Cash is still king when it comes to illicit finance, and that is not likely to change.”

Philip Rosedale, founder of Linden Lab’s virtual online world Second Life, will be rejoining the project as a strategic adviser to guide its entry into the Metaverse. While he is negative on content interoperability in the Metaverse, he believes a nonfungible token (NFT)-based future is the way forward long term.

Second Life is an online social game universe that launched in 2003 when the word “metaverse” was only being used by Neal Stephenson fans. Since leaving his position as CEO of Linden Labs in 2008, Rosedale has made a name for himself in the virtual reality (VR) ecosystem. In 2013, he created the social VR company High Fidelity.”