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bigX social post: the filter: the five most important stories in crypto this week [9 Dec – 16 Dec 2020]

Bitcoin goes to the moon by breaking its 2017 all time high above $20k, while institutional interest in Ethereum is booming. Fears that America will fail to pay its debts means that Bitcoin will replace the dollar as the world’s reserve currency, says Morgan Stanley chief global strategist Ruchir Sharma. And France has now imposed mandatory cryptocurrency KYC laws, with all cryptoexchanges required to ban anonymous trading accounts.

bitcoin breaks above $20k for first time in history [16 Dec 2020]

Bitcoin surpassed an historic milestone on 16 December 2020, holding above the $20,000 per coin price resistance barrier. Demand from larger investors and institutions has seen the cryptocurrency gain more than 170% this year. It remains one of the world’s best performing assets in 2020, attracting investors for its inflation resistance and expectations it will become a mainstream payment method. Read more here.

UK asset manager confirms $744m bitcoin buy [9 Dec 2020]

 UK-based asset manager Ruffer has confirmed a gargantuan £550 million ($744 million) Bitcoin buy for its Multi-Strategy Fund. “Ruffers exposure to Bitcoin currently totals around 2.7% of the firm’s assets under management,” a spokesperson told Coindesk. The investment of 45,000BTC was made as a protective move for portfolios to act as a hedge against currency deflation in a “fragile” monetary system amongst distorted markets, the asset giant said. Read more here.

Morgan Stanley: bitcoin will replace USD as global reserve currency [9 Dec 2020]

 In an opinion piece for the Financial Times, Morgan Stanley’s chief global strategist Ruchir Sharma says Bitcoin will replace the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency. America shows little interest in repaying its debts, said Sharma, noting that US liabilities to the rest of the world surpassed 67% of its economic output in 2020. “The dollar’s reign is likely to end when the rest of the world starts losing confidence that the US can keep paying its bills. That is how dominant currencies fell in the past,” he warns. Read more here.

CME to list ETH futures in 2021 [16 Dec 2020]

 The world’s largest and most liquid futures exchange, CME, is to list an Ethereum futures product in 2021. The cash-settled contract will debut on 8 February, subject to regulatory approval, and will represent 50 ETH, the financial giant said. CME’s Bitcoin futures market, which launched in 2020, is considered the benchmark proxy for institutional interest in Bitcoin. To see Ethereum added in the same way suggests asset managers and hedge funds will take a much greater focus on the world’s second largest cryptocurrency next year. Read more here.

France approves law to track all crypto transactions [13 Dec 2020]

 The French Council of Ministers has approved a new set of measures to combat anonymous cryptocurrency transactions. The orders, which come into place in 6 months, officially ban anonymous accounts at cryptoexchanges and enforce much stricter KYC requirements. Exchanges must now request two forms of ID from customers when accounts are opened, instead of at the previous €1000 limit. All exchanges, including those that don’t offer fiat trading pairs will have to register with France’s financial markets regulator, the AMF. Read more here.