News that Russia will be investing an enormous amount of $10 billion to purchase Bitcoin (BTC) has been circulating social media and even reported by several news outlets. The alleged investment started to spread as Vladislav Ginko, an economist who claimed to be working at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), poster multiple times on Twitter stating that the country he is working for showed signs of possible investment in the cryptocurrency.
Publication outlets that reported the news include ‘The Telegraph’, ‘Bitcoinist’, ‘Decrypt Media’, ‘Micky.com.au’, ‘TheBitcoinMag.com’ and ‘ZeroHedge’. However, the news purportedly originated from a news source called ‘The Daily Hodl’, which supposedly have the reputation of publishing fake news. The news source only cited Ginko’s tweets, and other news articles proceeded to cite ‘The Daily Hodl’.
Ginko replied to multiple tweets from other individuals regarding the matter, stating that the Russia government had no choice but to start investing the county’s central bank reserves into BTC to prevent the local economy from collapsing under the pressure of U.S. sanctions. He also expected that at least $10 billion will be used to purchase the cryptocurrency in the first quarter of 2019.
When asked by other Twitter users for evidences to back up his claims and what is his position in the country to be given the right to provide the following information, he stated that there are 3 reasons to the $10 billion investment. He claimed that many local officials’ families invest in the cryptocurrency and the investment provides the country with potential to mitigate economical losses caused by U.S. sanctions. Lastly, cryptocurrencies will be used in the reform of the country’s pension system.
He further claimed that he is a public personality in Russia, appearing on local TV shows and radio stations. While he revealed himself to be working at RANEPA and previously worked as a lecturer at New York’s Touro College, there is no way of proving these claims as currently both parties’ directories do not show that he is or was a member of their staff.
Additionally, he made questionable statements via the social media in the past. For example, he asked for the freedom of a Bernard Madoff in one of his tweets, who was a convicted Ponzi scheme operator. He even claimed that Madoff was “the true Satoshi Nakamoto”.
The fake news spread further when Ginko cited articles regarding the investment which unsurprisingly cited himself, further showing that no apparent evidence backed up the claims he has made besides his own words. At press time, Russian officials have yet made any announcements revealing intentions to purchase BTC worth as much as $10 billion.
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