😨 The next big crypto disruption

Take that, NYSE | China throws mud against a wall |

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Today's big stories

  1. Digital payments company Wise announced plans to go public on the London Stock Exchange via a direct listing
  2. There's a major disruption heading straight for cryptocurrencies, and it's not regulation – Read Now
  3. China’s upping its efforts to tame a red-hot rally in commodity prices

Wanderlust For Life

Wanderlust For Life

What’s Going On Here?

Wise announced plans on Thursday to make its debut on the London Stock Exchange, and the payment transfer company is confident it’s going places.

What Does This Mean?

The artist formerly known as TransferWise is eyeing a direct listing, which – unlike an initial public offering (IPO) – cuts out investment banks (and their exorbitant fees) and lets the company list without raising cash. That route makes more sense for Wise: the company sees $7 billion in transfers every month, it’s been profitable since 2017, and it’s doubled its revenue in the past two years. In other words, it doesn’t need cash from investors.

The direct listing means we won’t know Wise’s valuation until investors set it on the day. But the company was last valued at $5 billion in a private fundraising round last year, and one report suggests it might’ve climbed to $12 billion (tweet this).

Why Should I Care?

For markets: Pros and cons.
Wise’s stock market debut will be the first direct listing of a tech company in London – a big win not just for the UK, but retail investors too. Direct listings, after all, don’t give institutional investors first dibs on shares like IPOs do. There is a drawback, mind you: no investment bank around means there’s no one to keep Wise’s share price from getting too volatile in the early days.

The bigger picture: Get excited.
Wise isn’t the only company getting investors hot under the collar this week: OnlyFans – which provided the bare skin everyone needed to get through lockdown – said it’s looking to raise money from private investors at a $1 billion valuation for the first time. The startup handled more than $2 billion in sales last year, with $400 million in revenue and a profit to boot. The new funding round isn’t just about keeping its regulars happy, either: OnlyFans is looking to erect a more mainstream media platform and – presumably – fall asleep straight after.

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2. Analyst Take

The Next Big Disruption To The Crypto Industry

What’s Going On Here?

Everything’s cryptocurrency this, cryptocurrency that at the moment.

So it’s no surprise that 90% of the world’s central banks are exploring the idea of digital versions of their own currencies.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing: so-called “central bank digital currencies” – or CBDCs – could have plenty of advantages.

They could be used for instant and cheap money transfers, for one, or programmed in ways that would help boost countries’ economies.

And that means they could be the next big disruptive force for fintechs, big banks, cryptocurrencies, and – if you’re investing in any of them – your portfolio.

So that’s today’s Insight: how CBDCs will shake up the crypto market and finance industry, and how they could impact your investments.

Read or listen to the Insight here

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Metal Dejection

Metal Dejection

What’s Going On Here?

China just announced it’s selling off a load of its industrial metals, as the rally in commodity prices continues to get the poor little guy down.

What Does This Mean?

Between widespread supply issues and a strong global economic recovery, commodity prices have been pushed to their highest levels in almost a decade. And China – by far the biggest consumer of raw materials in the world – has been trying to put an end to the rally, which risks both driving up global inflation and making China’s growth ambitions more expensive.

So now the government’s announced it’ll start selling major industrial metals – copper, aluminum, zinc – from the state’s own stockpiles. The hope is that the extra supply will reverse the commodities rally – particularly the more than 60% surge in the price of copper, which is essential to everything from transportation to infrastructure.

Why Should I Care?

For markets: The US crosses its fingers.
Whether China’s plan works depends on how much metal the country releases into the market. But if it does, it might cement the US Federal Reserve’s view that the spike in inflation is just a blip. That’s especially true after its chairman pointed to the recent plunge in lumber’s price as proof that commodity prices – and by extension inflation – will come down eventually. And since that means the central bank will be in no hurry to bump up its interest rates, that’s good news for investors everywhere.

The bigger picture: Root for the underdog.
Metal prices might soon drop off, but oil’s price rise is showing no sign of slowing down. It recently hit multi-year highs of above $70 a barrel, and now – thanks to underinvestment in supply and a recovery-driven surge in demand – the world’s biggest commodity trading firms are expecting that to reach $100.

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Look, we like stocks and bonds as much as the next daily financial newsletter. Not knocking them. But while they form the basis of a strong portfolio, alternative assets can really make it pop. So join EquityMultiple’s CFO for How To Diversify Beyond Stocks And Bonds, and find out how to decide which of them to choose.

🚀 How To Diversify Beyond Stocks And Bonds: 6pm UK time, June 22nd
🤑 How To Earn A Passive Income From Crypto: 12pm NYC time, June 24th
🌿 Why Now’s The Time To Invest In Cannabis: 6pm UK time, June 28th
🍔 How To Make Money Going Meat Free: 6pm UK time, June 29th
💄 How To Give Your Portfolio A Beauty Makeover: 6pm UK time, June 30th
🤔 What Does Inflation Mean For Your Portfolio: 2pm UK time, July 15th
📈 How To Protect Yourself From Rising Prices: 6pm UK time, July 26th

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