Riot Blockchain and Crypto stocks rise on Bitcoin bounce
|Toronto Star 14 Jun 2021 at 15:56|
Riot Blockchain (RIOT) , Coinbase Global (COIN) and other cryptocurrency-focused stocks traded higher Monday as the price of Bitcoin jumped after Elon Musk said Tesla (TSLA) will allow transactions once the digital currency is more cleanly mined.
Riot Blockchain shares were up more than 16 per cent, while shares of Marathon Digital (MARA) were up 15.78 per cent and shares of Bit Digital (BTBT) were up 11.96 per cent after Musk said in a tweet that he wants miners to use about 50 per cent clean energy.
Other crypto-focused and crypto-exposed companies’ shares were also trading higher, with Ebang (EBON) up nearly 10 per cent, payments firm Square (SQ) up 2.97 per cent and Tesla itself up 1.93 per cent. In Europe, Argo Blockchain was up 6.9 per cent, Arcane Crypto was up 2.5 per cent and Northern Data was up 2.5 per cent.
Bitcoin was up nearly 13 per cent, at $40.601, topping the $40,000 mark for the first time in two weeks after surging on Sunday. Ethereum was also up more than 8 per cent at $2,560.45.
“When there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50 per cent) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing Bitcoin transactions,” Musk said in a tweet on Sunday.
The tweet was in a response to another post suggesting Musk’s recent back-and-forth positions on Bitcoin were “market manipulation,” and that his comments should have prompted an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Bitcoin and crypto enthusiasts also took it as a sign that Musk still sees a future for wider Bitcoin adoption after he criticized the digital currency for being an energy hog and relying too much on fossil fuels.
It is unclear how Musk will fact-check Bitcoin miners‘ clean energy usage as there is widespread debate over where the industry currently stands. Even so, the comments provide a first benchmark for reinstating Bitcoin payments at Tesla.
Musk’s tweet also reiterated his defence of having sold 10 per cent of the electric vehicle maker’s Bitcoin stash in the first quarter, which it bought for $1.5 billion, implying that the company hasn’t sold any more.