Nassim Nicholas Taleb, the author of “The Black Swan,” and a probability researcher and former quantitative trader, previously spoke highly of Bitcoin. Now he’s criticized it as essentially worthless, CNBC reported.

Taleb said in a recent paper that Bitcoin does not qualify as a currency without a government, a hedge against inflation, or a safe haven facility.

He wrote that Bitcoin is worth “exactly zero” when compared to gold and other precious metals that require no maintenance and will not be mined over time, as Bitcoin requires a certain amount of interest to maintain.

In other news, a man who used the dark web to steal $ 500,000 and buy cryptocurrency was sentenced to three years in prison, Business Insider reported.

Aaron Laws, 33, of Atlanta, Georgia, is described in the report as a “prolific identity thief” for stealing people’s information from credit cards. He used digital wallets and burner phones, and he enlisted accomplices and used bitcoin to circumvent the law and achieve his goals, the report said.

According to the report, Laws used the stolen money to buy “luxury goods” that could be sold for cash or Bitcoin. He bought a diamond-studded Bitcoin pendant and a Rolex that cost over $ 34,000.

Meanwhile, Fidelity Digital Assets plans to add 70 percent to its workforce as increased demand for cryptocurrency keeps the company going, Bitcoin.com reported. The company is also seeing increasing demand for Ethereum.

The new hires will focus on developing new products to open up more areas of crypto assets beyond Bitcoin, President Tom Jessop said, according to the report.

Jessop also said in the report that the company is trading digital currencies more often, and he said that crypto trading differs from traditional markets in that it is a 24/7 environment. He added that there is still a lot of demand for crypto, including from companies and pension funds that haven’t looked into it before.

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: MAKING LOYALTY WORK FOR SMALL BUSINESS STUDY – UK EDITION

About the course: UK consumers see local shopping as key to supporting the economy and protecting the environment, but many local high street businesses struggle to get them on the door. In a new study, Making Loyalty Work For Small Businesses, PYMNTS surveyed 1,115 UK consumers to find out how offering personalized loyalty programs can help attract new high street shoppers.