ECB President Christine Lagarde Says Crypto is “Worth Nothing”

Christine Lagarde, the President of the European Central Bank (ECB) has re-emphasized her dislike for the digital currency ecosystem, noting that the nascent asset class is highly speculative, risky, and worth nothing. (16).jpg

As reported by Politico, Lagarde shared how she felt about digital currencies in an interview with the Dutch TV show, College Tour, on schedule to be aired this Sunday. In her words;

“I have said all along the crypto assets are highly speculative, very risky assets,” Lagarde said adding, “My very humble assessment is that it is worth nothing. It is based on nothing, there is no underlying assets to act as an anchor of safety.”

The veteran financial expert said she has never invested in any digital currency, a declaration that does not come as a surprise considering other experts in both banking and finance also maintain a similar claim. However, Lagarde confessed that her son had invested in crypto, and came down with little luck.

While slamming cryptocurrencies, Lagarde says the emergence of a Digital Euro, the bloc’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) will receive her full endorsement seeing it will be backed by the ECB.

“The day when we have the central bank digital currency, any digital euro, I will guarantee it,” she said. “So the central bank will be behind it. I think that is vastly different from any of those things.”

In a manner that is characteristic of senior banking executives, the scorn for cryptocurrencies on the path of Christine Lagarde was more forthcoming. For regulators in the United States like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) chair, Gary Gensler, identifying the subtle distinction in his love for crypto is arduous seeing he has approved a BTC futures-based ETF but has refused to let a spot ETF version fly.

The disagreements about the revolutionary push of crypto are expressed in varying forms, and Lagarde and Gensler have showcased two of the ways one can antagonize crypto within the confines of regulatory measures.

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CFTC Nabs 2 Crypto Fraudsters Involving in a $44M Ponzi Scheme

Two suspected cryptocurrency fraudsters Sam Ikkurty of Portland, Oregon, and Ravishankar Avadhanam of Illinois have been charged by the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for illegally soliciting as much as $44 million through Ponzi-like scheme. (15).jpg

According to the Commodity and Futures regulator, both suspects utilized the social video streaming platform, YouTube to solicit funds from investors with the promise of investing the capital pool and paying out profits. The CFTC said the complaints it filed against both men allege that instead of investing the pool funds, the capital was being redistributed amongst signed participants in a scheme that can only be termed Ponzi Scheme.

The CFTC update showed that at least 170 people have fallen victim to the gimmicks from the two and that some of the funds which were intended for circulation were being used for their personal gains. 

While a status hearing is scheduled for May 25, the CFTC said it is charging the duo for the fraud and for operating a community investment pool without appropriately registering such with the commission.

The CFTC now wants restitution for defrauded customers, “disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, civil monetary penalties, permanent trading and registration bans, and a permanent injunction against further violations of the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA) and CFTC regulations.”

The majority of the enforcement actions being carried out by the CFTC is largely centered on the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Irrespective of the scale, the CFTC is notably playing a vital role in cracking down on cybercriminals, especially those looking for safe haven in digital or virtual assets.

Amongst the high-profile cases of law enforcement, the CFTC has handled in recent times includes the placement of LedgerX co-founders on leave following deep scrutiny from the commission. BitMEX exchange was also charged for operating an illegal crypto derivatives brokerage in the US for which it later paid $100 million in fines back in August last year.

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LUNA and UST Crash Could Have Been Averted if Bitcoin Reserves were Used Earlier, Binance CEO Says

The collapse of LUNA and UST, the native tokens of the Terra network, could have been avoided if the Luna Foundation Guard (LFG) had used its Bitcoin reserves earlier, according to Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ). (14).jpg

Sharing his insights on the Binance website, CZ noted:

“The Terra team was slow in using their reserves to restore the peg. The entire incident may have been avoided if they had used their reserves when the de-peg was at 5%. After the value of the coins had already crashed by 99% (or $80 billion), they tried to use $3 billion to do the rescue. Of course, this didn’t work.”

Things started going wrong when the price of the algorithmic UST stablecoin experienced a free fall to the extent that it hit lows of $0.225 from its $1 peg.


Later on, LUNA sent shockwaves to the crypto market because it nearly lost 100% of its value overnight after reaching the near-zero level. 


CZ also opined that the rain started beating the Terra network after more LUNA was minted in an attempt to salvage the situation. He pointed out:

“Printing money does not create value; it just dilutes existing holders. Exponentially minting LUNA made the problem a lot worse.”

The other flaw entailed using over-aggressive incentives like Anchor’s 20% annual percentage yield (APY). CZ stated:

“Specifically, Anchor’s 20% fixed APY to push for (in-organic) growth. You can use incentives to attract users to your ecosystem. But eventually, you need to generate “income” to sustain it, i.e., more revenue than the expenses. Otherwise, you will run out of money and crash.”

The Terra crash has triggered intense investigations on whether there was something sinister from the network founders. For instance, prosecutors indicated that they could file Ponzi fraud charges against Do Kwon, the CEO of Terraform Labs, and the face behind the Terra network.


Claims have also surfaced that Terraform Labs was dissolved on April 30, just days before the Terra tokens collapsed.

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81% of Americans Would be Motivated to Exercise if they Got Crypto Earnings, Study Shows

81% of Americans would be encouraged to work out if they were to receive cryptocurrency rewards, according to a survey by fitness platform FitRated. (13).jpg

The study interviewed more than 1,000 people with distinctive investing experiences, body types, and backgrounds across the United States. It intended to gauge what would motivate people to exercise even in the metaverse.


Per the report:

“81% of people would be motivated to stay fit by earning cryptocurrency for exercising. 4 in 10 people would cancel their current gym for a fitness membership in the metaverse.”

In addition, 75% of Americans would be inclined to sign up for gym memberships using cryptocurrencies


Bitcoin emerged as the most preferred


According to FitRated:

“Bitcoin was the number one most desired currency that people requested in exchange for working out.”

Respondents preferred crypto rewards in Bitcoin (BTC) at 72.8% followed by Ethereum at 35.5%. Dogecoin (DOGE) rewards capped the top three at 34.6%, thus showing an inclination towards memecoins.


When it came to the type of exercise that would be consistently done for a year in exchange for cryptocurrency gains, pushups, bench presses, and squats were the most desired at 45.9%, 44.9%, and 41%, respectively. 


The study added:

“Evidently, cryptocurrency motivates the type of fitness that covers a lot of distance, i.e., walking (49.1%), cycling (47.2%), or running (39.3%).”

Interestingly, a previous survey by the National Bureau of Economic Research disclosed that money would not motivate people to hit the gym. Therefore, it seems cryptocurrency is changing this narrative. 


Crypto rewards are emerging as a favored marketing tool in different quarters. For instance, fast-food chain Burger King revealed plans to give away cryptocurrency prizes to its customers through the Robinhood brokerage platform. 

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Is Bitcoin Edging Closer to the End of a Bear Market?

The back and forth experienced in the Bitcoin (BTC) market might soon come to an end based on various indicators, according to a crypto analyst under the pseudonym PlanB.


PlanB, who is the creator of the Stock-2-Flow (S2F) model, acknowledged:

“Realized Price / Moving Average (RPMA, purple) shows the Bitcoin cycle best. Relative Strength Index (RSI, yellow) is similar but can be misleading at critical times (e.g., 2nd half 2021). The good news: the bear market is almost over. Waiting for RPMA and RSI to start rising again.”


Source: PlanB


Similar sentiments were shared by market analyst Matthew Hyland, who acknowledged that the monthly RSI was approaching historical lows.



Source: TradingView


The relative strength index (RSI) is a momentum-based indicator that analyzes overbought and oversold conditions. Therefore, this indicator is almost hitting historical lows in the Bitcoin market, indicating an extremely oversold situation, which is often followed by a price rise.


Another bullish signal has popped up because BTC funding rates are negative. Crypto analyst Ali Martinez explained:

“Bitcoin funding rates remain negative, indicating that short positions are dominant. This is a positive sign for a potential rebound in BTC price.”


Source: CryptoQuant


PlanB had previously noted that it became crystal clear that Bitcoin’s bull run was over in the first quarter of this year because a full-blown bear market had emerged.


Bitcoin needs to hold the $29K level


For BTC to increase its rebound chances, the leading cryptocurrency ought to hold the $29,000 area.


Martinez pointed out:

“The most significant support level for Bitcoin sits between $29,330 and $30,200, where more than 1.23 million addresses hold nearly 850,000 BTC. BTC needs to hold above this demand wall for a chance of rebounding. Failing to do so can lead to the continuation of the downtrend.”

Bitcoin was hovering around the $29,425 area during the early hours on Sunday, according to CoinMarketCap

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Luxury Watchmaker TAG Heuer to Accept Crypto Payments

TAG Heuer, a Swiss luxury watchmaker that designs, manufactures, and markets watches and fashion accessories, announced on Friday that it will allow customers to purchase products using cryptocurrency payments.

The luxury watchmaker named Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dogecoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Shiba Inu, and the five USD-pegged stablecoins as some of the major cryptocurrencies that consumers can use to buy products at its stores.

TAG disclosed that it partnered with Bitpay to bring such a new payment feature to its e-commerce customer base.

TAG also announced plans to make its entry into the web3 space. The firm said it is developing a broader and long-term strategy for Web3, which it said will enable its brand to come alive in bold new ways via blockchain technology, NFTs, and many more in the e-commerce and retail spaces.

TAG acknowledged that as a luxury brand, it had to ensure that its entrance into Web3 would meet its standards of excellence. The firm said that through its agile in-house teams and with the support of Bitpay, it has the capacity to enter into this new financial world in the best way possible. The company stated that the new crypto payment feature is just the beginning of several exciting projects that it intends to develop in the Web3 universes.

Frédéric Arnault, CEO of TAG Heuer, commented about the development and said: “We have been following cryptocurrency developments very closely ever since Bitcoin first started trading. As an avant-garde watchmaker with an innovative spirit, we knew TAG Heuer would adopt what promises to be a globally integrated technology in the near future despite the fluctuations— one that will deeply transform our industry and beyond.”

TAG mentioned that there is no minimum spending required for the crypto payment method. Furthermore, it said that customers can pay using cryptocurrency for up to US$10,000 per transaction. According to the firm, customers can select their preferred cryptocurrency wallet or exchange, and crypto coin before proceeding with their payment. “Each transaction will be given 15 minutes before the exchange rate changes again,” the company elaborated.

Becoming a Preferred Alternate Payment Method

The sharp rise in crypto transactions by luxury spenders in 2021 has spilled into 2022. This explains the ever-rising influence that the crypto world has had over the luxury industry and its users. 

With the booming interest in cryptocurrency, many brands want to be part of the ongoing craze to remain relevant in their businesses.

Luxury brands see crypto payments as an opportunity for them to build new customer loyalty. They consider providing this payment method gives their customers flexibility, by allowing them to complete their transaction via an alternative payment method, which may be more suitable to their needs.

Last year, Philipp Plein, a German luxury outlet, became the first major fashion brand to accept crypto as payment. Early this month, Italian luxury brand Gucci announced plans to start accepting payments in crypto in some of its stores in the US.

The trend is rising as a number of luxury and beauty brands, including watchmakers Hublot and Franck Muller, are also accepting cryptocurrency payments.

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Bitcoin (BTC) $ 26,588.12 0.11%
Ethereum (ETH) $ 1,595.04 0.13%
Litecoin (LTC) $ 64.94 0.20%
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $ 208.48 0.05%