What a week! BTC is bullish, the founder of Tron paid $4.5M to eat with Warren Buffett, and Libra comes under fire once again.
- Tron founder Justin Sun finally got his $4.5 million dinner with Warren Buffett after winning a charity auction in 2019.
- BTC prices topped $9,700 on February 5, a new high for 2020.
- Two fraudsters scammed former MLB players and about 100 others in a crypto Ponzi scheme.
- After months of silence, Mastercard’s CEO finally discussed why the company ditched Facebook’s Libra.
Nearly a year after an ambitious bid won him a dinner with Warren Buffett, Tron founder Justin Sun finally had his meal with the legendary investor. The dinner, which took place at the Happy Hollow Club in Omaha, Nebraska, was originally scheduled for last July but had to be postponed after Sun was diagnosed with kidney stones. The meal came out to just over $500, which is pennies in a bucket after Sun’s original winning bid of $4.56 million.
According to a Facebook post, Sun and Buffett broke bread on January 23, where the latter gave the crypto wunderkind “support and advice.” Sun also presented Buffett with several gifts, among them one BTC token.
Sun posted a photo of the meal’s receipt, saying “Most delicious meal ever! Thks Warren Buffett for taking us to Happy Hollow Club! $4.56 MIL for a $515.05 dinner was money well spent! The insights I received are priceless.” The receipt is signed by Buffett and dated January 23.
Sun’s $4.5 million bid was the winner in the 2019 auction of a meal with Buffett.
It’s been a good week for bitcoin: after climbing to $9,745.17 on February 5, the token reached a new 2020 high. In fact, that’s the highest price BTC has traded at since last October, representing a 7% raise in the 24 hours preceding it. Crypto analysts and experts have predicted a bullish market for the world’s most prolific cryptocurrency this year, and so far that’s been the case.
There have been several reasons cited for bitcoin’s projected rise in 2020, but a major one is the upcoming bitcoin halving. These halvings only happen every four years, and there have only been two in BTC’s history thus far; in addition to cutting rewards for each block mined, these events serve as a stark reminder that bitcoin is a finite resource.
Joe DiPasquale, CEO of cryptocurrency hedge fund manager BitBull Capital, provided some technical analysis on the digital currency.
“Bitcoin has surpassed $9,500 and is trading above $9,700,” he stated.
“However, the resistance range still holds ($9,500 marked the start of the zone and it ends around $9,850),” said DiPasquale.
“If today’s candle closes well above $9,500, then we can start considering $9,500 as a weak support,” he added.
NY Daily News
Last week, the United States District Court of Arizona filed a criminal complaint against two men who allegedly operated a fraudulent cryptocurrency investment firm. John Michael Caruso and Zachary Salter were arrested for money laundering and wire fraud after it was discovered that the crypto firm was actually a Ponzi scheme.
Among the nearly 100 individuals and organizations defrauded by Caruso and Salter’s scheme were some Major League Baseball players. Though their identities aren’t specified, the complaint states that “numerous victims in this investigation have been identified as former MLB players and their families.” Also on the list: multiple senior citizens who invested hundreds of thousands of dollars, which the duo apparently spend on high-end cars and gambling in Las Vegas.
In emails obtained by investigators, Caruso guaranteed their “investors” returns of up to 30% and received investments as large as $300,000.
In 2019, Caruso was a scheduled speaker for “Campfire Summit Athletes & Families,” a Scottsdale retreat its website describes as “a private mastermind gathering the worlds [sic] change makers.” Last year’s event was held at Caruso’s mansion rental in nearby Paradise Valley. Fifteen MLB teams hold their spring camps near the retreat location, including the Dodgers, Indians and Cubs. At the time of publish, Campfire Summit had not responded to a request for comment.
Though players’ names were mentioned in the filing, the “Success at Success” podcast featured on Campfire Summit’s website touts retired White Sox slugger Paul Konerko, current Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer and Dolphins quarterback Josh Rosen as high-profile guests.
As we’ve reported before, Facebook’s planned Libra stablecoin is having a rough go of things, and it hasn’t even launched yet. Since its announcement last summer, several founding investors and partners have left the Libra Association, among them Paypal, Visa, eBay, and Mastercard. In an interview earlier this week, Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga revealed why the credit card company parted ways with Libra. In his words, being forced to use the proprietary Calibra wallet “doesn’t sound right.”
Expanding on that, it appears that like other former Libra partners and the United States government, Banga was concerned about Libra’s compliance with regulations. Additionally, Libra’s convoluted business model was also a cause for concern.
“For financial inclusion, the government has got to pay you in this [currency], you’ve got to receive it as an instrument you can understand, and you have to be able to use it to buy rice and cycles. If you get paid in Libra [coin] […] which go into Calibras, which go back into pounds to buy rice, I don’t understand how that works.”
That’s the roundup for February 8, 2020. Check in next week for the latest news of cryptocurrency innovation and regulation around the world!
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