10 things before the opening bell
Let's jump in.
1. Unrest in Kazakhstan is rattling the bitcoin market. Violent protests erupted after the Kazakhstan government removed a price cap on liquefied petroleum gas last week. The nation's entire internet went offline — resulting in a 12% drop in bitcoin's hash rate.
Hash rate is a key measure of how much computing power is required to support and create bitcoin, and it also plays a role in the token's security protocol. When China clamped down on crypto mining last year, Kazakhstan became the world's second-largest hub behind the US.
"The hash rate is not directly correlated to the price of bitcoin, but it gives an indication of the network's security, so a fall can spook investors in the short term," Marcus Sotiriou, an analyst at digital asset broker GlobalBlock, said in a note.
On Friday, bitcoin slipped to a three-month low. Nicholas Cawley of DailyFX said that the world's largest cryptocurrency was nearing another technical support layer between $39,600 and $41,700.
The political turmoil in Kazakhstan and the Fed's hawkish stance coming into this year have catalyzed a sell-off in risk assets like cryptocurrencies and other more-volatile investments.
During the bitcoin bear market, data from CoinMarketCap showed that altcoins like Cosmos and Chainlink outperformed as more popular cryptocurrencies dipped into the red.
2. A bit of stability is creeping back into the Dow after the US jobs miss. But stocks are looking somewhat downbeat more broadly as focus turns to Powell's Senate hearing and CPI inflation data later this week. Here are the latest moves on the market.
3. Goldman Sachs named its stock picks for 40% returns in 2022. The bank said certain stocks have the potential for market-beating returns, well beyond the 7% the S&P 500 is likely to deliver. See its list of 15 stocks.
4. Earnings on deck: Tilray, Yanbu National Petrochemical, and Jabal Omar Development, all reporting.
5. An Oregon man is going to jail after buying 15,740 shares of Tesla with pandemic relief funds. Andrew Lloyd pleaded guilty to all three charges and was sentenced to four years in federal prison. Get the details here.
6. Billionaire Ray Dalio said Fed rate hikes won't derail the economy. Dalio said tightened monetary policy does, however, make speculative stocks more vulnerable. The investor thinks the Fed changes could impact "bubble-type" tech stocks.
7. The cheapest piece of metaverse land you can buy is about $11,000. Virtual land has become an increasingly hot commodity. People are shelling out hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars to get their slice.
8. Shark Tank's Kevin O'Leary has big expectations for NFTs. They could serve as a method of authentication for items like watches and cars, O'Leary explained. Here's why he thinks NFTs will become bigger than bitcoin.
9. This 32-year-old earned $1 million from 67 JPEG NFTs he created from his bedroom while in lockdown. He broke down the steps and software he used to create his art and mint the NFTs— and the free tools that everyone can use.
10. Former BlackRock stock chief Bob Doll broke down his market outlook for 2022. With a much more uncertain outlook this year, the 30-year market veteran shared his best ideas for where to put your money — including five stock picks.
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