A brief history of Bitcoin bubbles

It’s been a breakout year for Bitcoin. In 2020 a wave of interest from mainstream investors and institutions helped push the price of the virtual currency from $7,200 in January to above $29,000 on December 31 (and then on past $32,700 by early January 2021). But the innovative digital asset, maintained by a decentralized swarm of so-called miners, has a long history of volatility. Most observers expect some retrenchment of that rally sooner or later.

For insight into why (or maybe when) a slump is likely, it’s worth looking back at Bitcoin’s many “bubble” periods: stretches when the price increased dramatically in a short amount of time, then fell, in most cases, even more sharply. “Bubble,” of course, has negative connotations, implying popular delusions and the madness of crowds. But there’s a growing understanding that financial bubbles can also be generated by temporary overoptimism about real innovation that can … Read More

Italian government totters as Conte, Renzi divide deepens By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte at a press conference in Rome, Italy

By Crispian Balmer

ROME (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte faces a showdown with his coalition partner and former premier Matteo Renzi this week that could bring down his government even as it struggles to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

Long-strained relations between the two men have deteriorated markedly in recent weeks, with Renzi calling for radical changes to plans to reboot the economy while also demanding that Conte cede his control over the secret services.

The prime minister has resisted the pressure, saying last week he was prepared to confront Renzi in parliament, effectively challenging him to act on his recent threats and abandon the coalition, thereby triggering an ill-timed crisis.

Renzi told Il Messaggero newspaper at the weekend he would not back down and dismissed suggestions that Conte could persuade a limited

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