Myth Of Money: Cuba to Legalize Crypto

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Myth of Money, a weekly newsletter on all things money, economics and technology read by 10,000+ investors, curated by Tatiana Koffman.

Disclaimer: The following is not intended as investment advice. Do your own research.

Dear Investors,

It appears that more countries would like to adopt Bitcoin and crypto. This trend is gaining momentum in South and Central American countries, as well as parts of Africa. Just a few months ago El Salvador became the first country to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender, while Panama, Paraguay, and Brazil are in active conversations about the role of crypto in their governments.

Countries want to back away from the hyper-dollarization they have been forced into by the U.S. government. With their domestic currencies proving to be unstable and most of the debt and trade flowing in denominated in dollars, these countries mark all value against the U.S. dollar. Bitcoin gives them an opportunity to change that.

The latest country to consider the move to crypto is Cuba.

According to Bloomberg:

Cuba’s communist government is trying to legalize and regulate the growing use of cryptocurrencies on the island as citizens ramp up transactions to evade state controls. 

The central bank said Friday that it’s drafting rules for the legal use of such currencies in commercial transactions, and to issue licenses for providers of services connected with virtual assets. Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Tether are already the most commonly used digital currencies on the island, the bank said. 

Citizens in countries with high levels of capital controls and inflation often prize such digital assets for their independence from state curbs, and as a vehicle for dodging foreign currency rules to move and save money abroad.  

El Salvador will adopt Bitcoin as legal tender alongside the dollar next month. The use of crypto has also grown in countries like Venezuela and Argentina with chronically high inflation rates and capital controls.

This Week in Forbes:

Biggest YouTuber In The World, 7-Year-Old ‘Like Nastya,’ Launches NFT With Gary Vaynerchuk

Seven-year-old social media influencer ‘Like Nastya’ has frequently been dubbed as the ‘most-watched’ or ‘biggest’ You-Tuber in the world, despite her young age. With an audience of more than 220 Million subscribers across all social media, Nastya made the Forbes Highest-Paid You-Tubers list in 2019 and 2020.

To build her growing empire and further engage with fans, Nastya joined forces with toy powerhouse Jazwares and Gary Vee’s emerging Metaverse company VaynerNFT, for her own NFT. Jazwares is previously known for action figure collabs with UFC, Fortnite, Pokémon Peppa Pig and Halo. VaynerNFT has on-boarded several high profile clients such as Budweiser, and launched its flagship VeeFriends project with over $50M in revenue. The collaboration will result in the first NFT for kids and families, although some NFT enthusiasts and collectors may even see it as a potential investment. 

The NFT collection will be delivered as a tiered program with several types of tokens: an unlimited ‘Nastya for All’ token (available during launch week only), a ‘special’ tier of social media engagement tokens, a token that can be redeemed for a personal customized birthday greeting from Nastya, and a Super Rare 1 of 1 Token, enabling a special live video call with the Nastya herself. Nastya’s Originals, created in collaboration with Gary Vaynerchuk’s VaynerNFT, officially dropped today on the Bitski platform.


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This Week By the Numbers 📈

Top Stories  🗞 

FTX Signs $17.5M Deal to Sponsor UC-Berkeley Athletic Department

FTX.US, the U.S. affiliate of crypto exchange FTX, has signed a $17.5 million, 10-year agreement with Cal Athletics, the athletic department of the University of California, Berkeley, for the naming rights to the field at California Memorial Stadium. FTX has been on a sports and e-sports sponsorship spending spree this year. In March, the exchange secured the naming rights to the home arena of NBA team Miami Heat for a reported $135 million, while in June, the exchange paid $210 million to acquire the naming rights for e-sports organization TSM. Read Full Story.

Visa buys an NFT-based 'CryptoPunk' avatar for $150,000

Visa is stepping into the world of NFTs with its purchase of CryptoPunk 7610, an NFT-based digital avatar. "We think NFTs will play an important role in the future of retail, social media, entertainment, and commerce," Cuy Sheffield, Visa's head of crypto, said in a blog post. "To help our clients and partners participate, we need a firsthand understanding of the infrastructure requirements for a global brand to purchase, store, and leverage an NFT." Sheffield added, "With our CryptoPunk purchase, we're jumping in feet first. This is just the beginning of our work in this space." Read Full Story.

WNBA 'Moments' Are Coming to Dapper Labs' NBA Top Shot

Dapper Labs' NBA Top Shot is set to sell “moments” commemorating the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) with an inaugural pack of licensed digital highlights scheduled for release on Friday. Dapper Labs said the non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which are digital collectibles authenticated with blockchain technology, will initially feature highlight-reel snippets from top players across league history. Dapper Labs’ head of partnerships, Caty Tedman, recounted a collection of dunks, splashes and game-winning shots stretching back 25 years. Read Full Story.

Goldman Sachs Raises Odds of Fed Taper in November

Economists at the investment banking giant Goldman Sachs now see a higher probability of the Federal Reserve (Fed) beginning a gradual unwinding of its liquidity-boosting-stimulus program starting from November. Such calls from Wall Street are being closely monitored by crypto analysts, some of whom are worried that the so-called "tapering" could weigh over asset prices, including bitcoin (BTC, -0.79%). The Fed, as part of its post-coronavirus economic recovery efforts, has been buying $120 billion a month of bonds to provide stimulus to traditional financial markets. The investment bank predicts that the Fed will taper the stimulus by $15 billion per month, starting from November. Should the Federal Reserve's liquidity tap go dry, bitcoin and other asset prices could give up at least part of the stellar gains chalked out over the past 1.5 years. Read Full Story.

Thank you for reading this week’s edition of the Myth of Money.🚀

Until next week,

Tatiana Koffman

By Tatiana Koffman

Hi there and thanks for reading. If you stumble upon my newsletter, you will notice that I write about money, economics and technology. I hold a JD/MBA and spent my career in Capital Markets working across Mergers & Acquisitions, Derivatives, Venture Capital and Cryptocurrencies. I believe in empowerment through closing the financial education gap and creating equality of opportunity for the next generation. Check out my articles in Forbes here.

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