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    Daily Digest 2/9 – Surge in Bitcoin energy consumption sparks debate in crypto community, Amazon Moves On Its Largest Renewable Project

    by Daily Digest

    Tuesday, February 9, 2021, 11:14 AM

Economy

GameStop frenzy aids Reddit as platform soars to $6 billion valuation

Reddit Inc.’s role in the recent stock-trading frenzy has brought millions of new users to the social media platform, its chief executive says, as well as scrutiny to the power of large communities online.

One of Reddit’s defining quirks is that it largely relies on users, instead of algorithms or armies of tech employees, to police speech. Those community moderators didn’t intervene when users in a forum called WallStreetBets egged on people to buy shares of heavily shorted stocks such as GameStop Corp. U.S. regulators are now probing whether the ensuing market upheaval resulted in securities-law violations.

Bitcoin hit a new high above $47,000 on Monday, shooting up more than 45 percent from the beginning of the year.

Other digital currencies — with names like Terra and Solana — also rose sharply in value.  Even Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency that began as a joke with a perpetually surprised Shiba Inu dog for its symbol, has soared almost 1,000 percent over the last week to set a record.

South Africa halted use of the AstraZeneca-Oxford coronavirus vaccine on Sunday after evidence emerged that the vaccine did not protect clinical trial volunteers from mild or moderate illness caused by the more contagious virus variant that was first seen there.

The findings were a devastating blow to the country’s efforts to combat the pandemic.

Scientists in South Africa said on Sunday that a similar problem held for people who had been infected by earlier versions of the coronavirus: The immunity they acquired naturally did not appear to protect them from mild or moderate cases when they were reinfected by the variant, known as B.1.351.

One-third of small businesses say they won’t survive without more COVID aid

Without a fresh round of COVID-19 aid from the federal government, about a third of the nation’s pandemic-stricken small businesses are warning they won’t be able to survive.

That’s according to a new report published by the Federal Reserve, which found that sales for 88% of small businesses have not yet returned to pre-crisis levels. About one in three — roughly 30% — of businesses said they expected they could not stay afloat without further assistance from the government, according to the report from the U.S. central bank’s 12 regional offices.

‘Big Short’ investor Michael Burry says Tesla’s $1.5 billion bet on Bitcoin was a distraction – and Dogecoin’s record price signals a massive bubble

Michael Burry questioned Tesla’s Bitcoin investment and sounded the alarm on Dogecoin’s record price in a series of now-deleted tweets on Monday.

“Chinese regulators summon Tesla on quality issues as consumers complain about quality … but $TSLA bought $BTC,” the Scion Asset Management boss tweeted, using the tickers for Tesla and Bitcoin. “In my mind’s eye, so much #digitalconfetti.”

Surge in Bitcoin energy consumption sparks debate in crypto community

The recent surge of Bitcoin (BTC) price has driven notable growth in the amount of electricity consumed by Bitcoin miners, spurring another wave of argument in the community over the ecology of the seminal cryptocurrency.

According to the latest data from Digiconomist’s Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index, Bitcoin energy consumption has been at its highest historical levels since late 2020, with the estimated annual consumption level staying above 75 TWh for a record period of time.

Energy

Amazon Moves On Its Largest Renewable Project

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) has reached a deal for its largest renewable energy project yet—one that will allow it to purchase 380 MW of wind energy.

Hollandse Kust Noord—a wind farm in the Netherlands currently being developed by The Crosswind—will supply the power through a project known as the Amazon-Shell HKN Offshore Wind Project.

DOE, House Energy committee question proposed building energy code changes

The organization responsible for developing model building energy codes is facing growing pressure to reconsider proposed changes that would limit the role of state and local governments in approving future updates.

More than 200 stakeholders submitted comments ahead of the International Code Council’s Jan. 21 board meeting, with about three-quarters of them opposing a plan to overhaul the process for approving its triennial updates.

Brent oil tops $60 for the first time in more than a year amid supply cuts

Oil prices rose on Monday to their highest in over a year, with Brent nudging past $60 a barrel, boosted by supply cuts among key producers and hopes for further U.S. economic stimulus.

Brent rose 2.06% to settle at $60.56 per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate settled 1.97% higher at $57.97 per barrel. Both benchmarks were at the highest since January 2020.

Gold & Silver

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Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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