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Jeff Bezos is moving on as CEO of Amazon to become Executive Chairman. Last year I asked my Twitter audience to evaluate Bezos’ contribution to economic welfare against other major names. The results make for an interesting evaluation.
Gradually then suddenly
Clubhouse, the audio social network, has been around for less than a year but its rise has been nothing short of meteoric. We still don’t have the verbs to describe what we do on the platform (clubhousing?) and yet it’s the buzz of Silicon Valley and beyond. I think the experience of Clubhouse is quite sublime right now. The question is whether it can maintain that experience as it grows. Do look me up if you are using it. Via Web Strategist
Shovels for social audio
Shares in Agora, the Chinese company that powers the audio platform for Clubhouse, have doubled in the past month, as investors try to capitalise on Clubhouse’s growth. The firm’s market cap has now exceeded $7bn. Via Koyfin
Hodl, hodl, hodl
Bitcoin investors are holding onto their coins for longer than ever. More than 60% of BTC supply has been held for more than a year and an increasing amount for more than five. Via Ark Invest
Ethereum trading on the rise
Trading assets on the Ethereum network are having a moment. Volume on decentralized exchanges touched $63bn in January driven partially by Bitcoin’s continued bullishness. This data from Fredrik Haga of Dune Analytics shows volumes on decentralized exchanges or DEXs. A DEX is non-custodial, meaning that trades happen without counterparty risk. You get USD and I get the stock, and vice versa – otherwise the trade does not execute at all. Last week brought unprecedented pressure and scrutiny of the current trade settlement process with Robin Hood centre stage. Might be a good time to take a deeper look at the alternatives. Via DuneAnalytics
It’s all mine
For all the rhetoric that decentralised cryptocurrency would have a democratizing effect on global finance, the reality is that assets remain in an extremely small number of hands. Consider the Gini Coefficient index for Ethererum. It is trending towards 1 up from an unfeasibly unequal 0.85 five years ago. For comparison, Denmarks Gini is 0.25, the US 0.47 and South Africa, 0.62. Of the 35 million Ethereum coin addresses out there, 34 million have less than one coin. Via Glassnode
The long arm of Reddit
Reddit is in the news for the Gamestop frenzy but just look at the explosion in subreddits about Ethereum over the past two months. Via The Block
It’s not like Ethereurum is unique in having a terrible Geni coefficient rating. The US stock market is overwhelmingly dominated by a small number of people. Via New York Times
It’s been a rough year for short-sellers and not just for those involved with GameStop. Via Nick Thompson
The dire US job market
You don’t need me to remind you that we’re still in the grips of this pandemic, but fresh data about job seekers in the US demonstrates just how depressed the job market remains. Via DailyShot / / @soberlook
Tough times for flâneurs
Walking, driving, and transit figures from leading cities such as Tokyo and New York are still severely depressed. Via Brandwatch (Disclosure: I am an investor in Brandwatch.)
The vaccine race
With so much data about the success and failure of Covid-19 vaccination campaigns around the world, it’s helpful to think about efforts on a timeline instead of doses administered per day. This chart, showing the time horizon for vaccinating 80% of the US population, shows us just how far the US has to go. Via Nate Silver
The next billion users
In the next four years, sub-Saharan Africa will reach close to half a billion mobile internet users, which in turn will drive a flurry of new applications and solutions for local markets. A critical space to monitor. Via FT
More users, more infrastructure
For a long time, South Africa was connected to the rest of the global internet by a single undersea cable. Those days are over and there is actually a boom in fibre connections to the continent. Via FT
Money and happiness
An age-old question: how much money do you need to be happy? New research suggests this might not be true and more money can lead to more happiness. Via PNAS
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