Etsy Fee Increase; Ether Isn’t A Security According To SEC; The World Cup Is Very, Very Expensive

The Water Coolest

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That’s what the SEC is saying to Ether investors, at least. On Thursday the Securities and Exchange Commission indicated that Ethereum is investor’s hill to die on, announcing that Ether is not a security and not subject to their regulation.

This, of course, helps Ether maintain its “it” factor: the concept that it is decentralized and unregulated. Ether rose 10% on the notion that the crypto is not a security.

Bitcoin had already been spared the “security” title but Ether’s fate remained in question because the Ethereum Foundation’s initial sale felt, smelled and tasted a lot like a security offering.

But alas, crypto investors are allowed to lose money on their own terms. And they’ve gotten quite good at it is as of late, with bitcoin’s plummet drawing comparisons to the dot-com bubble.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Let’s take this one step further, shall we? Can we just take all bitcoin and Ether investors, put them on an island with high-speed internet and let their civilization devolve into Lord of the Flies?”



Power user tip: you can find one of a kind, hand-crafted wedding gifts on Etsy. And they know it.

The web service that created a marketplace for artisans to peddle everything from boxing glove keychain charms to taco-themed tank tops announced that they will be charging the makers of said arts and crafts a larger percentage of each sale.

The damage? Fees will rise from 3.5% to 5%. And for the first time, fees will be applied to shipping costs. The online craft fair claims that increasing revenue will allow them to spend more on advertising. Shareholders couldn’t agree more.

Etsy’s stock rose over 25% on the news.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Like every good online marketplace, Etsy finally realized they can extort their distributors. Bezos couldn’t have done it better himself.”



Since the fall of the Soviet Union (good) Russia has been (kind of) making an effort to change the world’s perception of the former communist stronghold. If you remember, Russia hosted the Winter Olympics in Sochi back in 2014, to the tune of $50B, and President Vladimir Putin has opened up his piggy bank again for the 2018 World Cup.

Construction for the event began over six years ago. The tournament cost Vlad and his comrades about $11B to pull off, which they can only hope will take people’s minds off of the attempted annexation of Crimea (bad) that landed them in the European dog house.

Russia’s attempt at hosting soccer’s royalty is more of a brand building exercise than anything else, as the country’s current economy sits at $1.3T and likely won’t see much of a sustained boost stemming for the Cup.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “This is a good lesson in personal branding for those of you at home. Do something that makes your neighbors mad? Just throw money at your problems until they go away. Or host a World Cup, whichever is easier.




  • President Trump has approved a laundry list of tariffs on Chinese goods valued at $50B.The targeted goods will be released today.
  • You could say that the European Central Bank is running for the Brexit. The ECB plans to wind down its quantitative easing (read: buying about $2.9 trillion of bonds and other assets to stimulate the eurozone economy over the past 3 years) over the next few months, and halt the practice in December.
  • Snap will launch its own developer program, Snap Kit, which will allow other apps to piggyback off of Snap’s dick-pic based business model, er, use Snap’s login for sign-ups, build Bitmoji avatars into their keyboards, display public Stories, and generate branded stickers.
  • Turns out Elon Musk’s Boring Co. is more than just “Not Flamethrowers.” The company has won a bid to build a Chicago high-speed airport rail system. Musk will absorb the entire $1B cost of the project but will have exclusive rights to all revenue streams.
  • US indices were mixed yesterday:
    • DOW: -0.10%
    • S&P 500: +0.25%
    • NASDAQ: +0.85%