Dispatch #146: Mastercard Keeps Riding the Crypto Wave

3 min read
Dispatch

In this patch of your weekly Dispatch:

  • MicroStrategy's Bitcoin blitz 🛒
  • The Fed’s reality check 📊
  • A new UK asset class of crypto 👑

The Big Idea

Mastercard Is Going All in

Now, Mastercard is no stranger to cryptocurrencies as the payment processing giant has been active in the space, not least because of its partnership with us to launch the Nexo Card – the world’s first truly crypto-backed payment card. Yet, the company has taken another step forth announcing its plans to pilot tokenized bank deposits in its UK-based testbed, dubbed the Multi-Token Network (MTN).

“Our vision for MTN is to provide a set of foundational capabilities designed to make transactions within the digital asset and blockchain ecosystems secure, scalable and interoperable — ultimately enabling more efficient payment and commerce applications", Mastercard head of crypto and blockchain Raj Dhamodharan explained.

The concept of tokenization of assets and cross-asset exchanging is barely new in the space and one that Nexo, in particular, has been an avid advocate for as a natural use of blockchain technology.With Mastercard yet again affirming its commitment to remain active and build, the space receives a welcome legitimacy boost – it’s what helps us achieve new all-time highs in every way imaginable.

The Latest In…

MicroStrategy's Bitcoin Blitz!

  • MicroStrategy, led by Bitcoin-enthusiast CEO Michael Saylor, has added a cool 12,333 BTC to its stash after splurging $347M in its latest (digital asset) shopping spree.
  • This purchase brings MicroStrategy’s BTC holdings to a total of 152,333, or about $4.6B, for an average buy price of $29,668 per coin.
  • Michael Saylor predicted earlier this month that the US regulatory crackdown on cryptocurrencies will help Bitcoin nearly double its market share.

The Latest In…

A Reality Check by the Fed

  • This week, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell made it clear that multiple interest rate increases are to be expected at a possibly aggressive pace in consecutive meetings. Oh, boy.
  • The Fed remains uncertain whether the 10 consecutive hikes have had the desired effect on the economy – economists are speculating that the rate increases could potentially “break it” and spark a recession, yet Powell views it as a mere possibility.
  • Major central banks including the ECB, Bank of England, and Bank of Japan all indicated they would follow suit.

The Latest In…

The New UK Asset Class

The UK Law Commission proposed a new digital property category to include cryptocurrencies and NFTs under UK law, aiming to provide legal clarity and protection for crypto asset holders. Under the proposal, they’d fall under personal property categories such as “things in possession,” like gold, and “things in action,” such as company shares. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak requested the assessment in line with the government's ambition to establish the UK as a crypto hub, where “a surgical” rather than “an agricultural approach” will be utilized. That last bit is just good to know.

The Week’s Most Interesting Data Story

Traders Far and Wide Unite

Traders in the USA, EU, and Asia appeared to join forces, consciously or not, and prop up BTC’s price from $25k to over $31k in the week, reaching its highest level this year. Logically, it was Blackrock, the world’s largest asset manager, that sparked the trading frenzy and the surge in spot Bitcoin ETF applications, following its own ETF filing.

Hot Topics

What the Community Is Discussing

Last week’s rumors are this week’s breaking news. Crypto for you.

Consensys & YouGov’s report on Web3 perceptions across th🌐.

Do you see what they see?

What to Watch for Next Week:

  • Is the EU ready for a crypto hub?
  • Will BTC extend its spot ETF-fuelled rally?
  • Are altcoins recovering?

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