Blockchain This Week – A Week of Altcoins, Crypto Follows Where Musk Goes

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Elon Musk Tweets, Doge Leaps, Bitcoin Retreats

Tesla Rescinds Bitcoin Payments

Only weeks after announcing that customers can buy Tesla with Bitcoin, Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO and “technoking,” tweeted the repeal of it. Citing the rapidly consumed fossil fuels, such as coal, for mining Bitcoin as the reason, Musk said the promise of cryptocurrency cannot come at a significant cost to the environment. He, however, asserted that Tesla has no plans to sell its Bitcoin reserve.

Bitcoin Plunges Below $50K

Following this announcement, as anticipated, Bitcoin fell below $50,000. It dropped from $59,506.94 at the beginning of the week to $47,670.20 by midweek. It has recovered since then, and at the time of writing, one Bitcoin was worth $50,656.57.

Dogecoin’s Roller Coaster Week Featuring Elon Musk

Dogecoin Plunges

Earlier this week, Elon Musk appeared on the US-based popular show, Saturday Night Live (SNL). His appearance as the “Dogefather” was expected to boost the price of the meme coin. Instead, by the end of his gig, Dogecoin (DOGE) plunged from $0.69 to $0.48.

SpaceX Rocket for Dogecoin

Meanwhile, Geometric Energy Corporation (GEC) announced that its DOGE-1 Mission to the Moon, the first-ever commercial lunar payload in history, would be paid entirely with DOGE. The mission will launch on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in Q1 2022.

Dogecoin Shoots Up

Furthermore, Musk tweeted that Tesla is working with Dogecoin developers to “improve system transaction efficiency.” Analysts and investors are anticipating Tesla to start accepting payments in Dogecoin. As a result, DOGE prices shot up by 22 percent to $0.57. At the time of writing, DOGE was soaring at $0.54.

“Green” Tokens See Increased Interest

Several other cryptocurrencies that do not use resource-intensive Proof-of-Work algorithms and hence are relatively “green” compared to Bitcoin saw a significant rise in popularity and price, as well. As per market performance indicators, the biggest beneficiaries were Nano, Energy Web Token, and Hedera Hashgraph’s Hbar. All three reportedly posted double-digit gains following Musk’s U-turn announcement on Bitcoin.

Ether Reaches Yet Another All-Time High

The world’s second-largest crypto by market share, Ether, climbed to another all-time high this week. For the first time in history, its price crossed $4K and reached $4,382.73 in crypto markets. Consequently, its market capitalization briefly surpassed $500 billion and touched close to $505 billion.

Earn Interest on Dogecoin

Gemini crypto exchange added Dogecoin to the list of cryptocurrencies supported by its Earn lending initiative. As a result, customers can earn as much as 2.25 percent APY on DOGE. Additionally, Gemini has added SushiSwap, Injective, and Polygon tokens to the Earn platform.

Several Altcoins Had an Exciting Week

Besides Ether and Dogecoin, several altcoins also experienced an unprecedented high week. Litecoin crossed the $400 milestone and marked a new all-time high of $413.69 earlier this week. Similarly, Cardano’s ADA coin also jumped to a new high of $1.99. It gained close to 14 percent within a day.

Chia – An “Eco-Friendly” Cryptocurrency

Chia, a new cryptocurrency, claims to be another eco-friendly alternative to Bitcoin. Here, instead of using processor power, the number of empty hard discs in the machines is awarded a number of blocks based on available space. Dubbed “Proof of Space and Time,” this algorithm is already creating a shortage of hard disks worldwide due to a sudden surge in demand.

MicroStrategy Continues to Rally Behind Bitcoin

While Musk and Tesla are withdrawing their support for the premier crypto, there is one company that is relentless backing Bitcoin. The business intelligence firm MicroStrategy continues pursuing its goal to make Bitcoin its reserve currency. It has bought an additional $15 million worth of bitcoin this week. With the 271 coins, MicroStrategy has so far spent over $2.24 billion in accumulating Bitcoin.

At the same time, Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy, took on Twitter to defend Bitcoin mining in a series of tweets.

MoneyGram To Facilitate Bitcoin Trade

MoneyGram International, the money transfer service provider, announced that it would allow customers to buy and sell bitcoin for cash at 12,000 of its US retail locations. It is partnering with Coinme to facilitate this trade. 

Palantir’s Bitcoin Business

On the company’s earnings call this week, Dave Glazer, the CFO of software firm Palantir Technologies announced that the company has begun accepting cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. He also asserted that making Bitcoin as a treasury reserve asset is “definitely on the table.”

Buterin and Canine-Inspired Meme Coins

Buterin Gifts Billions of Dollars Worth of Canine Coins

The soaring popularity of Dogecoin seems to have created a playing ground for scores of canine-inspired meme coins. Allegedly, to further themselves in the “popularity contest,” token creators of Shiba Inu, Akita Inu, Dogelon, and others gifted their supply to Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin. At one point, Buterin had over $8.4 billion worth of Shiba Inu coins.

Buterin Offloads His Canine Coins

Meanwhile, Buterin donated $1.2 billion worth of his Shiba Inu coins to India’s Crypto Covid Relief Fund, started by Polygon’s Sandeep Nailwal. This offloading led to a massive price correction for Shiba Inu, which lost close to $5 billion in valuation. Similarly, he sent $431 million of Akita Inu to Gitcoin, a public Ethereum-based fundraising platform.

Argo and DMG Join Crypto Climate Accord

The crypto mining firms Argo and DMG have joined Crypto Climate Accord (CCA) this week. CCA is an initiative that aims to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions from crypto mining operations by 2040. Argo and DMG intend to work on increasing the transparency around energy souring by the mining rigs.

Argo Buys Hydro-Powered Data Centers

This week, Argo Blockchain purchased two data centers in the Canadian province of Quebec. These centers, which require 20 megawatts of electricity, are almost entirely powered by hydroelectric energy. Argo’s move is intended to bolster its “green mining vision.”

Polestar Traces Cobalt on Blockchain

Volvo and Geely owned electric vehicle manufacturer Polestar is teaming up with Blockchain firm Circulor. They are collaborating on promoting sustainable and ethical supply chain practices by tracing the cobalt used in Polestar EVs on Blockchain.

Diem Moves to the US

Diem, formerly known as Libra, is shifting its headquarters from Switzerland to the United States. US bank Silvergate will become the exclusive issuer of the Diem USD stablecoin. It will also manage the stablecoin reserve.

Singapore’s Largest Bank Launches Crypto Trust Solution

DBS Private Bank launched a cryptocurrency trust solution via its wholly-owned trust firm, DBS Trustee. The new crypto trust solution allows the company’s private banking clients to invest, custody, and manage Bitcoin, Ether, XRP, and Bitcoin Cash.

JP Morgan and Bahrain Central Bank Launch CBDC Pilot

Earlier this week, the Central Bank of Bahrain announced a digital currency pilot with JP Morgan. The trial will test cross border US dollar supply chain payments and receipts with Bahrain’s ABC Bank.

Hungary Looking to Cut Crypto Taxes

As a part of its economic recovery plan, Hungary plans on reducing the taxes on crypto trading. As outlined by the finance minister Mihály Varga, the lawmakers are considering reducing the tax to 15 percent of the income generated, down from the current 30.5 percent.

Indian Central Bank’s Informal Guidance

Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India, India’s central bank is informally asking the lenders to reassess their ties with cryptocurrency exchanges. This advice comes at the heels of the bill being crafted to ban crypto and penalize anyone dealing with them. 

Internet Computer’s Coin Price Surge

Internet Computer (ICP), a digital coin that launched earlier this week, has already set a record. In its debut week, the token is ranking ninth among the traded cryptocurrencies. It has a market cap of $35,057,962,157 and a circulating supply of 123,949,678 ICP coins.

Buy Condos With Crypto

Swiss-based crypto payments provider FNTX Capital Suisse has partnered with Portugal-based real-estate developer 355 Developments. Now, potential buyers can pay for their dream luxury apartments in Dogecoin, Bitcoin, Ether, and Cardano. The houses for sale are listed on the FNTX’s Real Estate Exchange, where the crypto prices of each listing are updated in real-time.

NFT Business This Week

First, nine CryptoPunks NFTs were sold for $16,962,500 on Christie’s. These nine were among the first 1,000 NFT minted by Larva Labs. Second, Sotheby’s sold the Banky’s artwork “Love is in the Air” for $12.9 million, significantly up from the originally estimated $3 to $5 million.

Next, the online marketplace eBay added NFT sales to its platform this week. eBay plans to provide an NFT inventory to sellers who meet its standards. Additionally, it is working on programs, policies, and tools in the future that will let users buy and sell NFTs across a broader range of categories.

KoineArth, a Singapore-headquartered startup, launched marketsN, one of the world’s first enterprise-grade NFT platforms. marketsN is powered by the Tezos blockchain, and Tezos India supports its technical implementation.

Finally, Dapper Labs, the creator of NBA Top Shot, is being sued over allegations that the Top Shot moments are unregistered securities. The documents filed in the Supreme Court of New York state that the claims are based on lead plaintiff Jeeun Friel’s “personal knowledge.”

Microsoft to Wind up Its Blockchain Business

Microsoft is shutting down its fully managed Azure Blockchain Service. It announced that while no new deployments are now possible, existing ones can continue until September 10. Microsoft recommends its customers to consider running their Blockchain applications on Azure VMs or move to ConsenSys if they are looking for managed offerings.

Binance Under Scrutiny

The cryptocurrency exchange Binance is reportedly facing an investigation by the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the US Department of Justice (DOJ). The officials have sought information from people who have knowledge of Binance’s business. They, however, have not accused Binance of any wrongdoing.

And Finally, S&P’s First-Ever Crypto Indices

S&P Dow Jones Indices launched a new series of digital asset benchmarks named S&P Digital Market Indices – S&P Bitcoin Index, Ethereum Index, and Cryptocurrency MegaCap Index. The first two will track the performance of Bitcoin and Ethereum, while the latter will track a combination of both cryptocurrencies.

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