Forbes - War of words 🗯

Good Tuesday morning. This is Billy Bambrough, getting you up to speed with the bitcoin and crypto latest.

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24-hour crypto market snapshot
Bitcoin (-1%) $38,424
Ethereum (+1%) $2,831
Solana (-1%) $87.50
Luna (+2%) $84.19
Calm before the storm 😶‍🌫️
Cryptocurrency prices are in a holding pattern this morning as traders take a wait-and-see approach to the Federal Reserve's interest rate decision and press conference tomorrow. The Fed's Federal Open Market Committee (FOMO) will begin its two-day meeting later today, with a decision due at 2pm ET tomorrow.

Bitcoin is down slightly on this time yesterday, off by almost 1%, while ethereum is up 1% as the dust settles from its hectic weekend of sky-high congestion. Ethereum rival solana has continued to trend downward in the aftermath of its devastating weekend outage. Terra's luna is leading the major market higher, up almost 2%.

Look out today... for market-moving comments from European Central Bank president Christine Lagarde who's set to take part in a Q&A at 9am ET.

Good to know: How Technical Traders Apply Their Expertise To Crypto Markets
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Bitcoin mafia hits back 🥊
Microstrategy’s Michael Saylor, one of the most bullish voices in the bitcoin community, topped the list of names on the letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Microstrategy’s Michael Saylor, one of the most bullish voices in the bitcoin community, topped the list of names on the letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Getty Images
Apes together strong: A group of more than fifty bitcoin and crypto advocates have written to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in response to a letter last week from a group of U.S. House Democrats that called on the regulator to investigate the possible negative effects of bitcoin and similar crypto mining. The pro-bitcoin letter seeks to set the record straight, arguing the previous letter is "premised on several misperceptions about bitcoin and digital asset mining."

Heavyweight namecheck:
Microstrategy's Michael Saylor, Block's Jack Dorsey, Bloq's Matthew Roszak, Castle Island Ventures' Nic Carter, Galaxy Digital's Michael Novogratz, Grayscale Investments' Michael Sonnenshein and SkyBridge Capital's Anthony Scaramucci are among the better-known signatories. "The undersigned individuals agree that by embracing the bitcoin network and bitcoin mining, the United States of America will be more innovative, economically resilient, and ultimately stronger into the future," the letter reads. They argue bitcoin miners are similar to tech companies' data centers.

Taking counsel: "We have authored a response to clear up the confusion, correct inaccuracies, and educate the public," Saylor posted to Twitter along with a link to the letter published on his Bitcoin Mining Council website. The council, a coalition of bitcoin mining and crypto industry companies, was created last year to push back on negative narratives in the public around mining.

Why it matters: Crypto lobbying has exploded over the last year, with research out last month showing the business of influencing cryptocurrency policy in Washington has more than quadrupled in the past four years. "The cryptocurrency lobbying spree is only just beginning," wrote Public Citizen’s Rick Claypool who authored the report.

Power trip: The crypto lobby is becoming "incredibly powerful," the Blockchain Association's executive director Kristin Smith told The Block, outlining three main reasons why the crypto lobbying industry is gaining influence in Washington. "Between the professionals on the ground, the political giving, and the people back at home that care about this space, the crypto industry is in a much, much better position than we've ever been to date," said Smith, who's Blockchain Association lobbies U.S. politicians on behalf of the crypto industry.

Meanwhile, across the pond... regulators are increasingly eyeing the crypto market and its environmental impact. Mairead McGuinness, the European Union's financial services commissioner, has written a piece for The Hill, calling for a "global agreement on crypto" to protect investors and limit the environmental impact of bitcoin mining—adding she wants to ensure "no product remains unregulated."

Now watch this: Can crypto clean up its dirty image?
SEC's hiring spree 🤝
👮 The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), in the midst of lobbying for more powers to better police crypto markets, is hiring 20 crypto-focused staff, almost doubling its current crypto headcount.

🗣 "By nearly doubling the size of this key unit, the SEC will be better equipped to police wrongdoing in the crypto markets while continuing to identify disclosure and controls issues with respect to cybersecurity," SEC chair Gary Gensler said in a statement. In September, Gensler told lawmakers the SEC could use "a lot more people."

👁️ The unit will be renamed the Crypto Assets and Cyber Unit, known as the Cyber Unit since it was created in 2017, and will have a total of 50 employees who will keep an eye on initial coin offerings (ICOs), crypto lending, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized finance (DeFi).

Now read this: Venture capitalists catch crypto fever
hello world
Billy Bambrough
Forbes Senior Contributor
I am a journalist with significant experience covering technology, finance, economics, and business. I write about how bitcoin, crypto and blockchain can change the world.
Follow me on Twitter or email me.
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