The CEO of major crypto exchange Kraken, Jesse Powell, predicted that the price of bitcoin (BTC) could be in the millions by the end of 2022, while by the end of 2021, ethereum (ETH) will rise above USD 2,000. That said, his BTC price predictions are measured in luxury cars, not USD, given the fiat’s inflationary nature.
The world’s number one crypto has had quite an eventful year so far, hitting its all-time high above USD 61,000 in mid-March. Replying to an interview question on Bloomberg TV of how far he expects the price to climb, Powell said that “I think I said bitcoin is going to infinity and that’s kind of hard to comprehend because I’m measuring it in terms of dollars.”
Per the CEO, the easier method would be measuring bitcoin in terms of pricy cars, such as:
“BTC 1 for one [Tesla] Model 3. Probably by the end of the year, I think it’ll be BTC 1 per Lambo, and probably by the end of next year it’ll be BTC 1 per Bugatti.”
For reference, currently:
a Tesla Model 3 is some USD 35,000-56,000;
a Lamborghini would cost you some USD 200,000-500,000 for starters;
and you’d pay for a Bugatti some USD 1.7m to upwards of nearly USD 19m.
At the time of writing (09:27 UTC), BTC trades at USD 58,126 and is almost unchanged in a day, after a wave of liquidations trimmed its gains on Wednesday. The price is up by almost 7% in a week and 30% in a month.
The reason for such a measurement, Powell explains, is because,
“you never know where the dollar is going to be. There could be 10 times as many US dollars out there a year from now, so it’s really hard to measure bitcoin against the dollar.”
Given the number of prominent individuals and companies who are bullish on crypto and/or have changed their positions on it, said Powell, other companies owe it to themselves to look at bitcoin’s fundamentals and try to understand why it’s being accepted – and if they don’t understand that, “I think you must not understand how the existing financial system works and how much benefit there is to the world” from BTC and other crypto.
“Thanks to Elon [Musk, Tesla’s CEO], everyone who owns a piece of S&P 500 now owns a piece of bitcoin,” said Powell.
There is a chance, he said, that crypto will replace everything existing in the traditional system, and given that the legacy companies haven’t made sure over the past decade that they are current with the crypto technology, they may be replaced as well over the next decade.
As for projects besides BTC, the CEO noted that Ethereum is moving to Ethereum 2.0, constraining the supply of ETH, and though it’s difficult to predict, he thinks we may see the coin’s price “north of USD 2,000” by the end of 2021.
Polkadot (DOT) is the other “hot coin” in Powell’s opinion, which many see as “the next Ethereum.” He said that “a lot of things” from Ethereum will be ported over to Polkadot for lower transaction fees.
As reported, Ethereum has been struggling with skyrocketing transaction fees, resulting in a number of projects moving or expanding to other chains, such as Binance Smart Chain (BSC).
As for non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which have been all the rage recently, Powell said he believes they’re here to stay as there are “tremendous commercial applications” for them.
He also noted that Kraken is on track to go public next year, “probably second half,” warning that “there are no guarantees at the moment” as “anything can happen in the crypto space.” Being in a public market is a great thing for their clients, he said.
Kraken’s got a “very strong” balance sheet, so it’s not necessary to raise more money before going public, but the CEO said that they are in discussions for another investment round. “Raising more capital at this point would be just about doing more acquisitions,” he said.
As reported, its competitor Coinbase announced that it filed to go public via USD 1bn direct listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol COIN this year.
ETF in the US in 2021?
And the price of BTC may rise further if some other forecasts turn true.
Asked about the experience of being a designated market maker for Evolve‘s new Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) in Canada, CEO of major financial services provider Virtu, Doug Cifu, said in a podcast that as soon as they saw it would be “recognized and regularized […] I was like ‘done’, Virtu is all over this because this plays right into our wheelhouse.”
In that line, Cifu noted that institutions will get more comfortable as BTC and crypto get regulated and different institutions like ETF issuers recognize them as valuable assets and include them in products – and that’s when “you’re going to see an explosion of interest.”
Therefore, he said,
“I’m hopeful that in this new administration, you’ll see the SEC [Securities and Exchanges Commission] approve them in the United States as well [and] I think it will be [this year].”
Reports of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus brought back memories of last summer when the fast-spreading Delta variant put a dent in the recovery and consumer confidence. This spooked investors on a traditionally quiet day in the market following Thanksgiving, leading to one of the worst days for stocks this year.
The Dow(INDU) logged its worst day since October 2020, while the S&P 500(SPX) had its worst performance since February. The Nasdaq Composite(COMP) recorded its steepest fall since September.
But just as the market quickly bounced back from its Delta fears, history appears to be repeating itself: Investors are taking a breath and sensing a buying opportunity.
The market opened in the green, with all three indexes sharply higher. The Dow opened up 375 points, or 1.1%, while the S&P rose 1.2%. The Nasdaq was 1.5% higher.
Other asset classes that were battered Friday — notably oil and cryptocurrencies — also recovered.
US oil prices were up 6.7%, or almost $5, at $72.69 per barrel around the time of the stock market open. That doesn’t totally make up for Friday’s drop, but it takes back a chunk of it.
The global oil benchmark Brent was up 5.7% at $76.84 per barrel.
Bitcoin was up more than 5%.
“Investors are trying to make sense of the latest Omicron Covid strain, but at this point more seems to be unknown than known,” said analysts at Bespoke Investments. “Clouding things even more, we’re unlikely to have definitive answers in the immediate future.”
US equities took a dive at the open and continued their downward path in the first half hour of trading, with the Dow more some 900 points lower. Oil prices were also badly hit.
Over the summer, the Delta variant spooked consumers and weighed on sectors like leisure and hospitality. Now investors and economists worry this new variant could do the same.
Wall Street was deep in the red early Friday, with the Dow(INDU) falling 2.5%, or about 900 points, in what is shaping up to be a volatile session. The broader S&P 500(SPX) tumbled 1.8% and the Nasdaq Composite(COMP) opened down 1.3%.
It’s a shortened trading session as the New York Stock Exchange will close at 1 pm ET after being closed Thursday for Thanksgiving. Reduced trading volume during this half-day session is also likely to exacerbate the swings in the market.
Nevertheless, it could shape up to be one of the worst days of the year for stocks.
But it’s not just stocks that aregetting a beating.
Oilprices are tumbling as well. US oil futures fell 7.4%, or nearly $6, to $72.51 per barrel around the time of the stock market open. The global benchmark Brent dropped 6.8% to $76.63 per barrel.
The US dollar, measured by the ICE US Dollar Index, which pegs it against its main rivals, was down 0.6% Friday morning.
Cryptocurrencies also felt the heat, dropping across the board. Bitcoin was down nearly 7% around the time of the stock market open, according to CoinDesk data.
Meanwhile, investors are pushing into safe haven investments. The 10-year US Treasury bond got more expensive and yields fell more than 0.1 percentage points to 1.52% Friday morning. Gold prices also jumped.
An NFT is “a unique digital certificate, registered in a blockchain, that is used to record ownership of an asset such as an artwork or a collectible,” according to a blog post from Collins, published Wednesday.
Acting like virtual signatures, NFTs prove the authenticity of an artwork as the blockchain serves as incorruptible proof of ownership, meaning that “original” artworks and their owners can always be identified via the blockchain, even if an image or video is widely replicated.
In March, a digital artwork named “Everydays: The First 5000 days” sold for $69.3 million via Christie’s, making its creator, graphic designer Mike Winkelmann, better known as Beeple, one of the art market’s most valuable living artists.
The idea of a digital revolution is also captured in another of the dictionary’s candidates for Word of the Year: “crypto,” short for “cryptocurrency,” digital money that is challenging traditional forms of money, according to Collins.
It also named “metaverse” in its blog post, following Facebook’s announcement that it would change its corporate name to Meta.
Other selected words reflect the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with “double-vaxxed” and “hybrid working” making the shortlist.
“Climate anxiety” reflects growing concern about the damage humans are doing to the planet, while “neopronoun” is a way of referring to a person without using their name or traditional markers of gender, such as “he” and “she.” Collins gives “xe,” “ze” and “ve” as examples of neopronouns.
Rounding out the shortlist are “Regencycore,” which is defined as a fashion aesthetic inspired by the Georgian-era clothing seen in the Netflix show “Bridgerton,” and “cheugy,” which is used to say that something is out of date or uncool.
In 2020, Collins named “lockdown” its Word of the Year, for obvious reasons, and, earlier this month, Oxford Languages made “vax” its pick for 2021.
Defined as “a colloquialism meaning either vaccine or vaccination as a noun and vaccinate as a verb,” vax was relatively rare until this year, the company, which publishes the Oxford English Dictionary, said.
In September, vax appeared more than 72 times more frequently than the year before, said Oxford Languages, which analyzes news content to track changes in the English language.