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Monday, March 16, 2020

#CryptoCorner: #Bitcoin Still in the Red After Brief Spike Following QE4 Announcement, Hut 8 (TSX: $HUT.TO) Reveals Cost-Saving Measures Amid Market Chaos, Bakkt (NYSE: $ICE) Raises $300M in Series B Funding Round


#CryptoCorner: #Bitcoin Still in the Red After Brief Spike Following QE4 Announcement, Hut 8 (TSX: $HUT.TO) Reveals Cost-Saving Measures Amid Market Chaos, Bakkt (NYSE: $ICE) Raises $300M in Series B Funding Round




Point Roberts, WA, Delta BC March 16, 2020 - Investorideas.com, a leader in crypto and blockchain investing news brings you today’s edition of the Crypto Corner podcast and commentary on what’s driving the cryptocurrency market .

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Bitcoin Still in the Red After Brief Spike Following QE4 Announcement, Hut 8 Reveals Cost-Saving Measures Amid Market Chaos and Bakkt Raises $300M in Series B Funding Round

Stocks discussed: (TSX:HUT) (NYSE:ICE)

Following last week’s market devastation, Bitcoin (BTC) more or less plateaued at a trading price of just above $5,000 over the weekend, after having fallen from around $7,500 last Thursday. Now, as we’re entering a new week, Bitcoin is down another nine percent in the last 24 hours and is posting a current trading price of $4,850, according to data from CoinMarketCap. This, of course, comes amid a general calamity seen in traditional markets as a response to global panic over the worsening Coronavirus pandemic. Crypto’s continued mirroring of the traditional markets’ downturn is presenting a challenge to the perception of it as a safe haven, though it bears repeating that the market chaos has affected other traditionally safe haven assets like gold to some extent.

The Federal Reserve has responded to this widespread market turmoil with the reintroduction of a zero interest rate policy, and $700 billion in quantitative easing comprising $500 billion of Treasury bonds and $200 billion of mortgage-backed securities. CNBC quotes Fed chair Jay Powell on the interest rate cut:

“We will maintain the rate at this level until we’re confident that the economy has weathered recent events and is on track to achieve our maximum employment and price stability goals.”

Within an hour of the Fed’s announcement, Bitcoin rallied 7.7 percent, according to CoinDesk, though as we’ve discussed, these gains have since dissipated. Additionally, the Fed’s move has not seemed to have impacted stock market indexes, which are decidedly in the red today. Commenting on the Fed’s decision, ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees tweeted:

It's great how they use the powerful term "injecting liquidity" when what's actually happening is "printing money and buying things with it."

Given that the ability of central banks to print money at will is one of the major arguments for Bitcoin, which has a built-in scarcity, this may still have a bullish effect on the crypto market.

Hut 8 Mining Corp. (TSX:HUT) has responded to the Bitcoin crash with the announcement that it “is optimizing its mining operations by running its mining equipment in cost-efficient modes.’ The statement continues:

“This has the ability to reduce its electricity consumption and costs by approximitely 50% while only reducing the hashrate output by approximitely 35%. While this optimization reduces total output, the overall overall margin is maximized and our costs are reduced.”

Hut 8 stock is down about 20 percent at press time.

Bakkt, the crypto subsidiary of Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE:ICE), has raised $300 million in a Series B funding round, according to a company blog post today. Bakkt CEO Mike Blandina writes:

I’m excited at our potential to unlock nearly $1 trillion of digital assets when the Bakkt app launches this summer. With the completion of our Series B financing and recent acquisition of Bridge2 Solutions, Bakkt is now a team of 350 employees and powers the loyalty redemption programs for 7 of the top 10 financial institutions and over 4,500 loyalty and incentive programs including two of the largest US airlines. We have the unique opportunity to leverage the technology, infrastructure and partners across our businesses to bring innovative new products to market and in doing so expand access to the global economy.

Sam Mowers, Investorideas

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