“ I want to break free…” !

Freddie Mercury couldn’t have encapsulated a nail biting, stress inducing, week for the supertanker aptly named “Ever Given” and it’s apparent release from aquatic jail last night more perfectly: after nearly a week, the Suez Canal is open for business.

Last Tuesday, the Ever Given became affectionately known as the Suez Blocker.

Smashed between a rock and…another rock, the giant container ship closed up the Suez Canal, a route that sees nearly 12% of global trade.

Other ships were forced to pull a Vasco De Gama and sail around the tip of Africa.

Each day  cost an estimated $14 – $15 million of appliances, exercise equipment and consumer electronics not being delivered to places like Europe and the NYC + NJ ports. So if you haven’t received  your Peleton bike yet, channel your inner Milli Vanilli and… you know… “blame it on the Suez.” 

How to blow up your hedge fund in three easy steps

Massive block sell orders hit seemingly random stocks such as BIDU, TME, VIPS prior to the market’s opening Friday. While speculation ranged from Dr. Evil to one of the Jonas Brothers, it turned out to be Bill Hwang, leader of Archegos Capital Management. A fund notorious for employing high leverage, reporting said Archegos received a margin call (aka pay your bills) from one of their investment banks.

Hwang’s fund liquidated other stocks to avoid welching on their debt. THEN Goldman sold another $3.9 billion of shares of VIAC, FTCH, IQ, and GSX. Retail investors as well as investments advisors were left wondering WTH was going on. 

All told, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley filled orders to the tune of $35 Billion.

The brief take away: leverage helps destroy funds faster than most scandals. So, it’s not entirely surprising to see this happen. #themoreyouknow 

Trackstar top search

Shares of WISeKey International Holding (WKEY) screamed higher on news the company plans to auction the first-ever secure luxury Non-Fungible Token (NFT) watch at the end of the month.

Search volume from institutional advisors surged 350% in the past two days.

So what’s the big deal?

Most of us know about NFTs as absurd parts of the blockchain world that have you pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to own a few pixels and call it ‘original.’

But WISeKey’s move could upend the market for luxury items.

The core of blockchain

Yes, we all know about Bitcoins.

Yet, blockchain technology offers so much more potential that is often lost in the mix.

You see, blockchain codes create a near ‘unbreakable’ verification transaction history. Think of it as a mark of authenticity.

Imagine buying a Rolex watch from a pawn shop. 

How do you know the watch isn’t stolen?

Or maybe you want to own a painting (you know, one of those real-life things you can touch).

Can you say for certain it’s not a fake?

NFT’s act as a historical ledger and verification system wrapped into one.

Stuff one of WISeKey’s tags into a luxury item, and you now have an embedded ePassport complete with the item’s history.

Why this matters

The provenance of luxury items is big businessAuction houses and resellers employ thousands of people globally to verify authenticity. And even then they make mistakes.

Embedded NFTs take away that cost. They simplify the transaction, conveying a sense of security with the purchase.

But it doesn’t stop there.

Blockchain technology has the capacity to change the face of transactions across every industry: real estate, banking, contracts, and more.

NFT stocks

Aside from WISeKey International (WKEY), there are a  couple of companies worth mentioning.

  • Dolphin Entertainment (DLPN), an entertainment marketing and content development company,  announced they plan to launch an NFT creation and marketing unit. This is to be done in collaboration with Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment (HOFV)
  • ZK International (ZKIN), a China-based designer, engineer, manufacturer, and supplier of patented high-performance stainless steel and carbon steel pipe products that require sophisticated water or gas pipeline systems, announced its subsidiary, xSigma, launched its NFT platform on Ethereum and polkadot blockchains.

Many other stocks rose alongside the popularity of NFTs. Yet, most have no direct connection to NFTs. 

This is an important distinction when you decide where you put your money.

The bottom line

The NFT market is still in its infancy. Yet, the potential and growing acceptance in the blockchain space makes success appear more likely than ever before.

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