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February ended on a very neutral note for bitcoin, with the asset closing the month very slightly higher. This remains positive after an explosive month of January, especially since the NASDAQ index closed the month down slightly. The trend seemed quite positive for the markets as a whole, but more worrying than expected inflation data on Friday dragged them down.Overnight, impressive data from China's manufacturing industry eased global growth concerns and improved risk appetite in international financial markets. Recent favorable developments from China, which is considered the factory of the world as well as the largest trading partner of the United States and Germany, has put downward pressure on the US dollar against the main currencies. This trend has encouraged an increase in demand for risky assets such as bitcoin. It is the regulatory framework in the four corners of the world that has mainly caught the attention in recent days. Members of the French legislature have given their backing to a more stringent set of rules for companies operating in the cryptocurrency space, which are currently awaiting President Emmanuel Macron's approval before their enactment. Members of the country's National Assembly voted to pass a European Union law package, 109 to 71, which includes an amendment imposing tougher requirements on new players seeking entry on the French cryptocurrency market. France's moves to become Europe's cryptocurrency hub have helped attract companies such as Binance and to its territory. However, the arrival of MiCA, which will harmonize the rules governing cryptocurrencies across the European bloc, could challenge the country's great commitment to this industry. The IMF continues to adopt a particularly negative and polarized position towards cryptocurrencies. According to the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, the ban on cryptocurrencies should not be completely ruled out if they start to pose higher risks to financial stability. “We are very much in favor of regulating the digital currency world,” Ms. Georgieva said in an interview with Bloomberg, adding that it is a top priority for the Financial Stability Board, the IMF and the Bank. Bank for International Settlements. However, “if regulation is slow to come and crypto-assets become a higher risk to consumers and potentially to financial stability,” the option to ban crypto-assets “should not be taken off the table,” he said. Ms. Georgieva, citing countries like India that have explored such a possibility in the past. Unsurprisingly, she adds that state-backed stablecoins have “reliability” and “reasonably good space for the economy,” while unsecured crypto-assets “are speculative, high-risk investments, not lenders. 'money". Easy to see where all this is going, at least if we stick to the will of the IMF… In the United States, the launch of such a national stablecoin, called CBDC, certainly does not seem like a done deal. US Congressman Tom Emmer introduced a bill that would prohibit the Federal Reserve from issuing a CBDC directly to anyone. The bill, titled “CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act,” specifies that “except as specifically authorized under this act, a Federal Reserve bank may not offer products or services directly to an individual, or maintain an account on behalf of an individual, or issue central bank digital currency directly to an individual”. It goes on to detail more specifically that “The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Open Market Committee may not use any central bank digital currency to implement monetary policy.” Rep. Emmer explained in his tweet announcing the bill that “Any digital version of the dollar must respect our American values of privacy, individual sovereignty, and free market competitiveness. Anything less than that opens the door to the development of a dangerous surveillance tool.” However, there is no unanimity on the subject. For his part, Yaya Fanusie, a cryptocurrency researcher and former CIA analyst, believes that the US government's relatively slow start in the development of central bank digital currency (CBDC) could cause it to lose its grip on the financial system. global. In a Bloomberg interview yesterday, he explained that sanctioned states seek to transact on financial infrastructure that is not controlled or heavily influenced by the United States, in order to move funds more freely across borders. Fanusie explained that state-issued CBDCs could become an integral part of the financial infrastructure adopted globally. If they fail to influence the new standards, it will impact US economic policy. Mr. Fanusie warned that if the United States continues to lag behind in adopting CBDCs, it could cause problems” and unforeseen “geopolitical repercussions” in the long term. He pointed to the central position of the United States in the global financial infrastructure as the source of its sanctioning power. If this position were to change, it could lead to problems if sanctioned actors find a new way to transact. He clarified that this does not mean that China will take over or that the yuan will replace the dollar, but rather that the emergence of a viable new system will have consequences. Private companies do not lose faith in the emerging cryptocurrency industry. Payments company Visa said it is not slowing down its cryptocurrency plans, despite rumors suggesting otherwise amid the brutal 2022 bear market. The US firm's crypto chief Cuy Sheffield said on Tuesday, in a series of tweets, that a Reuters article claiming that Visa and MasterCard were slowing down their crypto development campaign was inaccurate regarding Visa. He added that, despite the challenges and uncertainty in the crypto ecosystem, Visa sees currency-backed digital currencies running on public blockchains as having the potential to play an important role in the payments ecosystem. The Coinbase exchange revealed last week that it was launching its own Tier 2 Ethereum network. reach $64.83 per share. The proposed solution, named Base, can improve transaction processing time and lead to lower gas fees than when directly interacting with the underlying mainnet. Coinbase claimed that Base can reduce transaction costs up to 10x compared to interacting directly with Ethereum. The launch of Base would position Coinbase as the only publicly traded company with its own Tier 2 infrastructure, as the company seeks to diversify its revenue streams beyond transaction fees primarily from traders on its platform. Still in relation to Ethereum, note that a new technical step closer to the Shanghai update – allowing the withdrawal of staked Ether on the new proof-of-stake network – was reached this week. Shapella, the Shanghai Update testnet, was activated at 4:04 AM UTC as planned and finalized at 4:17 AM UTC on February 28. The next simulation will take place on the Goerli testnet, after which the Shanghai upgrade will be rolled out to the Ethereum mainnet, marking the next big step after the Proof-Consensus Algorithm network transition. of-Work to the Proof-of-Stake algorithm in September 2022. Since Ethereum launched its Beacon Chain in 2020 and began to become a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) network, over 17 million ETH have been staked on the network. However, users have not been able to withdraw these assets so far. The Shanghai upgrade, scheduled for March, will finally unlock this feature. According to a Bank of America survey, people between the ages of 21 and 42 with at least $3 million in assets only have 25% of their portfolio invested in stocks. For high net worth investors over 43, the equity allocation is much higher at 55%. This same survey reveals that 29% of younger people said that crypto offers great opportunities for growth, while only 7% of the older group agreed. Unsurprisingly, the younger generation is also much more exposed to cryptocurrencies (an average allocation of 15% of their portfolio) than the older generation (an average allocation of 2% of their portfolio). Millennials with deep wallets are also inclined towards real estate investment and private equity investment. It is the turn of the Lebanese pound to remind us, once again, how bitcoin wants to be a protection against national currencies when the latter go off the rails. The small Mediterranean country, facing one of the worst economic crises in modern history, is on the verge of collapse. “The Lebanese pound is on life support. It's over,” said Mike Azar, a former economics professor at Johns Hopkins University. "It's just a conduit between people and [US] dollars." Lebanon's currency has lost more than 98% of its value against the dollar since the country's financial collapse began in 2019. Lebanese lives have come to revolve around the fluctuation of the pound and currency exchangers. money, while economists say the currency could be beyond bailout. "It's not a currency you can store value in," Azar told The National. “You cannot make transactions with her. You have to change prices every hour. How is it a currency?The beginning of March seems crucial for bitcoin, as it begins for all practical purposes at the level of the 50-month moving average. The latter has been rising since the birth of the asset and has always served as an important support. Successfully trading above it and turning it back into support would definitely be a bullish scenario. A rejection of the latter could, however, bring us back to testing the supports created in recent months.The next major macroeconomic event will be the Fed's announcement of the next interest rate hike on March 22.This article is brought to you by Fonds Rivemont. The Rivemont crypto fund is the first and only actively managed cryptocurrency fund in Canada. RRSP and TFSA eligible. Accredited investors can learn more here.

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