U.S. Markets Finish Eight Weeks of the Last Three Months in Red
U.S. markets had another week ending in losses. This is the eighth week out of the last nine where the S&P 500 declined, with the only exception being last week when the index gained 6.6%. According to the U.S. Department of Labor report, the U.S. economy added 390,000 jobs last month, in contrast to adding 436,000 in April. Last month's number still exceeded analysts' expectations of 325,000. The latest data from the labor market provided further confirmation that the Federal Reserve needs to continue pursuing an aggressive monetary policy.
Legislation and Bitcoin Meet Again
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will propose significant changes to the stock market, with changes expected as soon as this fall. Since last year, Chairman Gary Gensler has expressed interest in finding ways to make the stock market more efficient for both retail investors and public companies. While most aspects of Gensler's efforts are still in development, his idea that brokerages could be required to send individual investors' trading orders to auctions, where trading firms competitively bid for the privilege to execute the orders, has gained popularity.
Two U.S. Senators unveiled a highly anticipated bitcoin bill that has been in the works for several months, hoping to provide regulatory clarity for all cryptocurrencies. Senator Cynthia Lummis, one of the two architects of the bill, said that the legislation will "fully integrate digital assets into [the] financial system and bring order to the crypto space." The legislation will clarify the roles of two of the most important regulators in the United States, the SEC and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and distinguish miners from broker-dealers. The bill would also designate many assets as commodities under the CFTC and implement new disclosure requirements that make anonymously run projects almost impossible.
Bitcoin Miners Doubling Down on Hardware and Hashrate
Crypto miner Hive Blockchain, a publicly-traded company, sold about 10,000 ether (ETH) to increase its bitcoin mining capabilities and fund strategic relationships with Intel, the company producing the bitcoin mining rigs. Hive is expected to test these units by the end of this month, one of the first miners to receive Intel's second-generation bitcoin-specific mining chips. The chips are expected to be more efficient than their competitors. Additionally, the investment could give Hive a bitcoin-equivalent hashrate of up to 6.2 exahashes per second (EH/s) within the next 12 months, up from its current capacity of 3.4 EH/s. According to their most recent operational update, Hive also grew its hashrate by 8% in May.