Mark Cuban says gold buyers are ‘stupid,’ sparking debate between gold and bitcoin with Peter Schiff.

Happy New Year! And what a year it has been for bitcoin and its ilk. This is Mark DeCambre, editor-in-chief of MarketWatch.

What does 2023 hold for bitcoin prices or adoption? Will cryptocurrency face more existential threats in the coming year?

These are just some of the questions we hope to address clearly and concisely in this installment of The Distributed Ledger.

To all our DL readers, may the best of 2022 be the worst of 2023.

Of course, find me on Twitter @mdecambre and at MarketWatch at

Quote of the week

“We cannot take a one-size-fits-all approach to crypto regulation – the nature, scope and potential of this ecosystem is too broad and too promising to be stifled by tight-fisted regulations.”

“I believe that all of our actions using the protocol were legitimate open market actions, even if the development team did not fully anticipate all the consequences of setting the parameters as they were.”

Cuban gold

Some are dismissive of Mark Cuban’s recent comments about gold as he fights bitcoin. Perhaps none other than Peter Schiff.

Gold gave an unfiltered look at the GC00 during an appearance on comedian Bill Maher’s Club Random podcast, which aired in Cuba on December 25th.
against bitcoin.

“If you have gold, you’re dumb,” the billionaire investor told Maher.

The owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks added: “It’s not a hedge against anything … it’s a store of value. Gold is a store of value, and so is bitcoin.”

He also said he would be interested in adding to his bitcoin holdings as the price falls further. The asset is down more than 64% so far in 2022, while gold is down less than 1% year to date on Thursday.

“I want bitcoin to go lower so I can buy more,” Cuban said.

According to him, owning physical gold in the digital world is impractical.

Cuban’s comments apparently angered Peter Schiff, a longtime gold advocate and investor.

“His lack of understanding of Bitcoin is matched only by his lack of understanding of #gold,” Schiff wrote on Twitter.

Cuban said in the podcast that no one is advocating buying bitcoin, but that the digital asset has more benefits than the precious metal and sees it as a digital transaction.

Mango mix

He’s no Sam Bankman-Fried, but Avraham Eisenberg is building a dubious reputation for himself. This week, he was arrested in Puerto Rico on charges of commodity fraud and manipulation after siphoning off millions from a protocol known as Mango Markets.

According to a complaint filed Tuesday in Manhattan federal court, Eisenberg’s futures trades linked to Mango’s cryptocurrency MNGO allowed him to withdraw $110 million in cryptocurrency from other investors’ deposits, with no apparent intention to return the funds.

Eisenberg claimed his actions were legal back in October via Twitter:

But US prosecutors think otherwise.

Regulates cryptocurrency in 23rd year

MarketWatch’s Anushree Dave writes that Congress will have to reach a conclusion on whether to classify cryptocurrency as either a commodity or a security in order to achieve a clearer regulatory framework for the asset class.

To be sure, there is the question of whether cryptocurrency should be regulated at all, especially after a series of scandals, including Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX.

In any case, there are several proposals on the table sponsored by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Democrat, as well as Debbie Stabenow, Democrat of Michigan, and John Boozman, Republican of Arkansas. There’s also one backed by Sens. Cynthia Lummis, Republican of Wyoming and cryptocurrency advocate, and Kirsten Gillibrand, Democrat of New York.

We will look at what, if any, bills will be passed next year.

Set SOL?

The sun sets on Solana, SOLUSD
the cryptocurrency once hyped by former FTX’s Bankman-Fried? Solana collapsed on Wednesday amid concerns that its biggest owners would sell it.

In the summer of 2021, when Solana Labs raised $314.2 million from well-known investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, Alameda Research, a crypto hedge fund founded by Bankman-Fried, invested heavily in the project. Bankman-Fried also created a decentralized ecosystem on Solana called Serum.

But after FTX filed for bankruptcy in November, traders sold Solana and the price fell 65% from $37 to below $12. It is currently 94.09% below the high of a year ago.

Argo stays in the water

Argo Blockchain PLC ARBK
said on Wednesday that it has sold the Helios facility in Texas and related operations to Galaxy Digital Holdings BRPHF.
for $65 million.

The cryptocurrency miner said it will take a new $35 million loan from Galaxy to refinance its asset-backed loans with an initial term of 36 months.

– Dow Jones Newswires

Bitcoin 2023

What is the outlook for Bitcoin? It remains hazy, but some speculate. Lamoureux & Co. Yves Lamoureux, president of macroeconomic research firm Yves Lamoureux, says he sees bitcoin falling to around $13,000 and rising further as the dust settles after recent industry scandals.

He sees real momentum in 2025 when mass adoption of bitcoin gives the digital asset a boost.

Ryan Selkis, founder and CEO of Messari, a cryptocurrency analytics firm, told MarketWatch’s sister publication Barron’s that “bitcoin is starting to act more like a trust-neutral reserve asset.”

Based on some metrics comparing bitcoin to gold, Selkis estimates that bitcoin could be worth $500,000, but provides no timetable for such growth.

Crypto in an instant

Bitcoin is down 1.3% over the past week and was trading at around $16,616 on Thursday, according to FactSet.

Ether fell 1.3% to $1,196.50, FactSet data showed.

Meanwhile, FTX local coins, also known as FTT tokens, have traded down 1.3% in the past seven days to trade at $0.859904, according to data provider CoinGecko.

Biggest Winners


7 day return %




Terra Luna Classic



Internet computer









Source: CoinGecko December 29

The biggest losers


7 day return %










A wallet of trust






Crypto companies, funds

Coinbase Global Inc shares COIN
decreased 1.1% during the week to $34.76. MicroStrategy Inc. MSTR
has fallen nearly 18% to $137.84 for the week so far.

Crypto mining company Riot Blockchain Inc. RIOT
as of Thursday, down 8.4% to $3.40. Competitor Marathon Digital Holdings Inc. MARA shares
During the past week, it decreased by 4.3% to $3.38. Ebang International Holdings Inc. EBONY
It has lost nearly 11% in the past week and is trading at $2.62. Inc. shares OSTK
fell 1% for the week to $19.34.

Block Inc. SQ shares,
formerly known as Square, is up 2.5% for the week to date at $62.70. Tesla Inc. Shares TSLA
fell nearly 12% to $119.59.

Read it: Tesla shares snap record losing streak for best daily gain in nearly a month

See also: Tesla stock is the most traded stock ever

PayPal Holdings Inc. PYPL
trading around $69.90, up 1.9% for the week. Nvidia Corp. NVDA
last week it fell almost 9% to $146.13.

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Shares AMD
As of Thursday, it was down 2% on the week to $64.87.

ProShares Bitcoin Strategy BITO among cryptocurrency funds
Short Bitcoin Strategy ETF BITI, meanwhile, fell 1% to $10.36 on Thursday
It increased by 0.9% to $40.11. Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy ETF BTF
The VanEck Bitcoin Strategy ETF XBTF was down 0.8% at $6.54
It fell by 0.7% to $16.68.

Gray Bitcoin Trust GBTC
It fell 2.3% to $7.95.

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