61 episodes

Welcome to The Scoop, The Block's flagship podcast that digs into the finance and technology industries through unmatched interviews with top thought leaders and industry veterans. The Block’s Director of News Frank Chaparro hosts new guests every week, diving into topics ranging from Facebook's Libra to the impact of tokenization on market structure to Universal Basic Income. Download via Apple Podcasts, Sticher, and Spotify and join in on the fun, informative conversations.

The Scoop The Block

    • Investing
    • 4.5, 23 Ratings

Welcome to The Scoop, The Block's flagship podcast that digs into the finance and technology industries through unmatched interviews with top thought leaders and industry veterans. The Block’s Director of News Frank Chaparro hosts new guests every week, diving into topics ranging from Facebook's Libra to the impact of tokenization on market structure to Universal Basic Income. Download via Apple Podcasts, Sticher, and Spotify and join in on the fun, informative conversations.

    Robo advisor Betterment’s CEO says customers are ‘staying the course’

    Robo advisor Betterment’s CEO says customers are ‘staying the course’

    After a gloomy March and a proverbially rainy April, May has shaped up to be a – dare one say it – positive market from a macro market perspective.
    Despite the ongoing tragedy of the global coronavirus pandemic, investors appear to be buying. The S&P 500 broke 3,000 for the first time in March and the Dow is up broadly on positive sentiment that efforts to reopen businesses in the U.S. – all in the hopes of coaxing back consumers – will be successful. Yet despite the sense of optimism, analysts hesitate to call it a clear win, given the risks that remain.
    The Block sat down with John Stein, co-founder of robo advisor firm Betterment, who spoke about the macroeconomic picture in the context of his firm’s clients. Stein remarked that while the first quarter of 2020 was a strong one for signups – April even more so – the company has nonetheless felt the pinch amid difficult market conditions.
    “Our revenue is tied to assets under management. We see our pain, our own accounts are down. You know, my personal account is affected by a downturn in the market. And our customers feel that.” he told The Block. “But overall, our customers are staying the course.”
    We also explore:

    How Betterment has fared in a world where remote work is the rule, not the exception

    The ways in which the firm’s customer base reacted to this year’s market turbulence

    How the first quarter of 2020 was one of Betterment’s best

    Its checking account product

    Staying competitive in a hyper-fast space where all eyes are on the market


    This episode of The Scoop is brought to you by Bitstamp, the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!

    • 50 min
    An FX exchange veteran explains growing a crypto exchange and weathering the Covid-19 storm

    An FX exchange veteran explains growing a crypto exchange and weathering the Covid-19 storm

    Institutional crypto exchange LMAX Digital closed out its second year by 10x-ing its trade volumes, trading $75 billion worth of crypto in the past 12 months, the firm revealed exclusively to The Block.
    Since its launch two years ago, the firm has facilitated $85 billion in trades, according to a Tuesday press release. Last year's monthly high was $8.6 billion traded in June of 2019, and that month saw the firm's daily record high on June 27, when $1.25 billion was traded on the exchange. 
    CEO of LMAX Group David Mercer said the firm has become the primary price discovery venue, having grown to command a sizable portion of the spot cryptocurrency market. Still, the firm's growth has stagnated recently and the size of its market is still dwarfed by retail-aimed exchanges like Binance and Coinbase. 
    Now, with two years of growth under its belt, the firm is looking to expand its reach. Mercer told The Block that the firm is looking to add its trade and market data to more leading market reference indices, as well as expand its product portfolio with the growth of the asset class. 
    In a recently recorded episode of The Scoop, Mercer discussed the firm's recent growth and what it's been like to operate a digital asset exchange in the midst of the ongoing financial and health crisis. The Block's Frank Chaparro and Mercer also explore:

    How the firm coped with rising volatility and maintained liquidity on its venue in the midst of whipsawing crypto markets

    The differences between how traditional markets have held up during the COVID-19 crisis relative to crypto 

    Why LMAX needs more asset managers, fund managers to get involved in crypto for it to go head to head with retail exchanges

    What traditional markets can learn from crypto 

    Why banks may not care about crypto yet, but their customers are asking questions


    This episode of The Scoop is brought to you by Bitstamp, the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!

    • 47 min
    Anthony Scaramucci: Paul Tudor Jones took "a sledgehammer" to the wall between Wall Street and bitcoin

    Anthony Scaramucci: Paul Tudor Jones took "a sledgehammer" to the wall between Wall Street and bitcoin

    If recent headlines are any indication, Wall Street's slow embrace of bitcoin – or, at least, financial instruments tied to it – is beginning to pick up the pace.
    Earlier this week, it was reported that JPMorgan is offering banking services to cryptocurrency exchanges Coinbase and Gemini. And macro investor Paul Tudor Jones recently revealed that he allocated as much as 2% of his assets to bitcoin, while his fund has opened to door to buying bitcoin futures. Elsewhere, derivatives markets are heating up with volumes and open interest on CME Group's bitcoin option contract hitting fresh highs on Thursday. 
    Market participants point to the juxtaposition of central bank money printing and bitcoin's fixed-supply – the latter of which was very much on display this week during the halving event – as one catalyst for recent interest.
    On this episode of The Scoop, Skybridge Capital's Anthony Scaramucci explores these developments and why he is "there" when it comes to being convinced to allocate some capital to bitcoin. 
    "Paul is closed for new investors, but if he wasn’t closed for new investors, I would be in his fund," Scaramucci said. "And I have no problem owning, as a pass-through through his fund, some level of digital currency exposure."
    In this episode, the former 10-day-long White House communications director said that Jones has helped the idea of owning bitcoin acceptable go mainstream.
    An admitted non-crypto expert, Scaramucci said there is a technological opportunity for peer-to-peer transfer of value with permanency.
     "There is an era coming where everybody is going to want to own something that is less manipulated by the governments as it relates to a store of value," he said.
    Scaramucci said that a few more announcements like Paul Tudor Jones' revelation that he will take on exposure to bitcoin will cause the "wall to fall down." 
    We also explore: 

    Why Scaramucci recently moved close to $300 million to legendary hedge funds Bridgewater Associates, Oaktree Capital, and Third Point, and why his fund and others suffered during the first part of the year

    Why the pandemic hit the structured credit market especially hard relative to equities

    The implications of the liquidity the Fed is injecting into the economy, and why money printing can last longer than we think

    Why the crypto rush will happen, but not as quickly as people want it to – and why he doesn't buy the threat to the dollar in the near future

    Scaramucci gives us an inside look on what's going on in Washington and why Libra would be an unmitigated disaster from the government's perspective



    This episode of The Scoop is brought to you by Bitstamp, the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!

    This episode was also brought to you by PAX Gold, the world’s only regulated gold token. It’s the fastest and easiest way to own and trade the highest-quality physical gold. One PAX Gold token represents one fine troy ounce of a 400 oz London Good Delivery gold bar, stored in Brink’s vaults in London. When you buy PAX Gold, you own physical gold. 
     The value of PAX Gold is always tied directly to the real-time market value of gold.PAXG is an ERC-20 token on Ethereum, and can easily be moved or traded anywhere in the world, 24/7. With PAXG, anyone can now own a fraction of an LBMA-accredited London Good Delivery gold bar with zero storage fees. Trade it today on leading exchanges like Kraken, FTX and itBit.

    • 41 min
    ConsenSys fintech executive dissects Facebook's Libra project, the growth of the stablecoin market, and how fintech and crypto can coexist

    ConsenSys fintech executive dissects Facebook's Libra project, the growth of the stablecoin market, and how fintech and crypto can coexist

    It’s been an interesting time for the stablecoin market.
    Total stablecoin issuance recently surpassed $10 billion, according to data compiled by The Block Research. Meanwhile, the discussion of Facebook’s Libra has taken on interesting new dimensions of late. Lex Sokolin, a former research analyst and the current global co-head of fintech at Consensys, has been paying close attention to these developments.
    In this episode of The Scoop, which was recorded prior to the Libra Association announcement of its new CEO, we dive into its shift to a multi-currency model. We also dig into:

    Whether Libra’s massive network and cash pile will suck the life out of other open-source initiatives

    Why a regulated approach to digital assets might have an easier time surviving and thriving

    Is the stablecoin market overhyped right now?

    How developments in the fintech ecosystem may have an impact on business models in the cryptocurrency market


    This episode of The Scoop is brought to you by Bitstamp, the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!
    This episode was also brought to you by PAX Gold, the world’s only regulated gold token. It’s the fastest and easiest way to own and trade the highest-quality physical gold. One PAX Gold token represents one fine troy ounce of a 400 oz London Good Delivery gold bar, stored in Brink’s vaults in London. When you buy PAX Gold, you own physical gold. 
     The value of PAX Gold is always tied directly to the real-time market value of gold.PAXG is an ERC-20 token on Ethereum, and can easily be moved or traded anywhere in the world, 24/7. With PAXG, anyone can now own a fraction of an LBMA-accredited London Good Delivery gold bar with zero storage fees. Trade it today on leading exchanges like Kraken, FTX and itBit. Or, earn interest on your PAX Gold holdings through Nexo or Crypto.com. Learn more or purchase PAX Gold at paxos.com/paxgold

    • 31 min
    'It opens up a new universe': Mike Novogratz on the significance of Paul Tudor Jones' bullish bitcoin take

    'It opens up a new universe': Mike Novogratz on the significance of Paul Tudor Jones' bullish bitcoin take

    Unless you were hiding under a rock on Thursday, you would have seen the letter by macro investor Paul Tudor Jones that outlines his case for owning bitcoin as a hedge against central bank money printing. 
    In the letter – titled The Great Monetary Inflation – Jones dropped the bombshell update that Tudor Investment Corp could allocate a percentage of its assets to bitcoin futures. Although Jones doesn't subscribe to owning bitcoin "in isolation" or view himself as a "crypto nut," the coin community propelled into euphoria at the sight of one of the most respected fund managers giving the burgeoning asset a stamp of approval. 
    Galaxy Digital's Mike Novogratz – having once sat in a similar seat to Jones as a macro investor – joined The Scoop's Frank Chaparro and discussed the significance of Jones' letter. This latest episode also digs into:


    The macro investor's toolbox: Why it doesn't matter that Jones might allocate to futures rather than spot bitcoin


    More funds on the sidelines: Novogratz says many major fund managers he knows own bitcoin in their personal accounts but say it's too difficult to buy through their funds


    Update on Galaxy: How the firm revamped its playbook to take advantage of the new environment and why subscriptions for the asset management business have increased


    The macro picture: Why inflation could follow a period of deflation


    The dollar: Why Novogratz thinks the chances of China taking on dollar hegemony is at an all-time high


    Halving: How it’s fueling bitcoin’s bullish narrative and where bitcoin’s price is going after it happens


    This episode of The Scoop is brought to you by Bitstamp, the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!

    • 28 min
    Bloomberg's Tracy Alloway and Joe Weisenthal on how this crisis is different from '08

    Bloomberg's Tracy Alloway and Joe Weisenthal on how this crisis is different from '08

    We are going to rewind the clock on this episode of The Scoop with the Odd Lots team, Bloomberg's Tracy Alloway and Joe Weisenthal.
    The podcast duo – whose combined time covering global financial markets spans more than three decades – take us back to their times at the FT's Alphaville and The Business Insider, respectively, where they covered the 2008-2009 financial crisis. 
    In this episode, the podcasters become the "podcast-ees." The episode explores how there are parallels between the dearth of reporters at the cutting edge of the repo markets and blind spots in today's coverage of the coronavirus.
    We also dive into:

    The differences between the structural problems as revealed by the 2008 financial crisis and the COVID-19-linked crisis.

    How the government's inability to funnel money to Main Street reveals the issues underpinning our financial plumbing, and how those issues could make Universal Basic Income more of a mainstream policy prescription in the U.S. 

    Why cash in people's pockets during a crisis is a good thing.

    How this crisis might result in a shift in how we think about capitalism, whereas the last crisis resulted in a shift in the way we think about risk.

    How bitcoin and Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) aren't as different as some pundits might think.

    Why we shouldn't sleep on equity analyst research.


    This episode is brought to you by Bitstamp the original global cryptocurrency exchange. Since 2011, Bitstamp has been a cornerstone of the industry, earning the trust of over four million individuals and top financial institutions looking for a reliable trading venue. Whether you’re trading on our web platform, mobile app or industry-leading APIs, Bitstamp gives you the professional-grade tools you need to execute your strategy. Download the Bitstamp app or visit Bitstamp.net/Pro to learn more and start trading today!

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
23 Ratings

23 Ratings

Ckim198734 ,

One of my favorite crypto podcasts

Really great interviews for crypto info

Rsreudijeucien ,

Best crypto podcast out there!

Five star hosts, five star content, five star podcast!

Dean130130 ,

5 Star, BUT

I wish these guys would talk into the microphone. Volume goes in and out and it sounds like they are turning their heads away from the mike. Annoying to chase the volume like that. Fix that, and 5 stars

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