Elon Musk has again touted DogeCoin, saying the meme cryptocurrency is ‘literally’ going to the moon after buying an undisclosed amount for his young son.
The Tesla CEO on Wednesday morning tweeted a cartoon showing the Shiba Inu dog from the meme that inspired Dogecoin on the lunar surface, adding the remark, ‘on the actual moon.’
‘Going to the moon’ is internet slang used by small traders to predict that a particular asset will greatly increase in value.
Musk has been tweeting relentlessly this month promoting the ‘joke’ cryptocurrency, and the price of Dogecoin jumped once again after his latest salvo. The coin was up 21 percent in 24 hours on Wednesday morning, at $0.057252, with total gains for the year of more than 890 percent.
Musk again tweeted about Dogecoin on Wednesday, saying it is ‘literally’ going to the moon
Musk has been tweeting relentlessly this month promoting the ‘joke’ cryptocurrency, and the price of Dogecoin jumped once again after his latest salvo
Dogecoin is up more than 890% this year, after long trading at less than one cent
Although it’s not clear if Musk literally meant ‘literally’ when referring to Dogecoin on the moon, he’s one of the few people who could actually make that happen. Musk’s SpaceX has been developing systems to return to the moon by 2024 under a contract with NASA.
Musk first started tweeting about Dogecoin on February 4 and the cryptocurrency’s price has been surging ever since, sparking concern over the billionaire’s ability to move markets.
Asked by a Twitter follower why he was such a fan of Dogecoin, Musk responded: ‘I love dogs & memes.’
DogeCoin has similar technical underpinnings as better-known cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, but is little used and had long traded for less than one cent.
It was created in 2013 as a joke mocking the proliferation of new cryptocurrencies and based on a then-popular internet meme of a Shiba Inu dog.
Earlier this month, Musk revealed that that he had purchased an undisclosed amount of Dogecoin for his nine-month-old son X Æ A-Xii, who he shares with musician Grimes.
‘Bought some Dogecoin for lil X, so he can be a toddler hodler,’ he tweeted alongside a video of his son sitting on the floor.
‘Hodl’ is an intentionally misspelled phrase used in the context of cryptocurrency to refer to buy-and-hold strategies.
A 24-hour view of Dogecoin price shows the price spike after Musk’s tweet at 8am
‘Bought some Dogecoin for lil X, so he can be a toddler hodler,’ Musk tweeted alongside a video of his son sitting on the floor
It is not clear how much cryptocurrency Musk purchased, or when he bought it.
Musk made his enthusiasm for cryptocurrency clear after Tesla revealed a $1.5 billion investment in Bitcoin, which reached record highs on the news but has since pared gains, dragging Tesla shares to a loss for the year on Tuesday.
On Wednesday morning, Bitcoin was trading above $49,000, up about 2 percent in 24 hours and 68 percent so far this year. Bitcoin has a market capitalization of about $920 billion, compared to Dogecoin’s total value of about $7.35 billion.
Musk has been tweeting relentlessly about Dogecoin since February 4, which was subsequently followed by endorsements from rapper Snoop Dogg and Kiss rocker Gene Simmons.
Musk’s first Dogecoin tweets on February 4 included a picture of a rocket soaring past the moon with the caption ‘Doge,’ and an image from the Lion King that showed himself holding up the dog from the Doge meme.
‘Dogecoin is the people’s crypto,’ another tweet read. ‘No need to be a gigachad to own.’
‘No highs, no lows, only Doge.’
Musk has been tweeting relentlessly about Dogecoin since February 4
Musk has previously drawn sanctions for the Securities and Exchange Commission for his material tweets about Tesla, where he is CEO and a major shareholder.
He settled with the SEC over the complaints, which were spurred by a tweet musing about taking the company private, and another sharing production projections.
Publicly traded companies are regulated in how they provide forward-looking statements, in order to ensure investors have equal access to news that can move share prices significantly.
Cryptocurrencies are not regulated in the same way, and Musk’s tweets about DogeCoin are unlikely to be a violation of any law or regulation, regardless of whether he owns the cryptocurrency.
However, venture capitalist Nic Carter told CNBC earlier this month that Musk’s tweets were worrying.
Carter warned that people will lose money because Dogecoin is a ‘vehicle for speculation’.
‘Unfortunately a lot of retail punters are going to lose money on Dogecoin in the long term because there’s really not much there in terms of interesting technology,’ Carter said.
‘The only thing it can really do is be zombified and stick around and be an empty shell for people’s expectations and for their entertainment.’
TIMELINE: How Musk teased cryptocurrencies over the years
Jan. 29: Musk adds ‘#bitcoin’ to his Twitter bio, leading to a 14% surge in the price of the largest cryptocurrency. The billionaire has since taken the tag off.
In January, total market value of all cryptocurrencies reached more than $1 trillion for the first time.
Feb. 1: In a chat on social media app Clubhouse, Musk says, ‘I am a supporter of bitcoin.’ He said bitcoin was ‘on the verge of getting broad acceptance’ by conventional finance people. Musk added that he was ‘a little slow on the uptake’ and should have bought it years ago.
Feb. 4: Musk tweets ‘Doge’, in reference to a cryptocurrency based on a popular internet meme. He later tweeted, ‘Dogecoin is the people’s crypto.’ and ‘I am become meme, Destroyer of shorts.’ Dogecoin surged more than 60%.
With a market value of around $10 billion, Dogecoin becomes the eight-biggest cryptocurrency.
Jan. 10: Musk tweets, ‘Bitcoin is *not* my safe word.’ (https://bit.ly/3oTVmmI)
Dec. 20: Musk tweets, ‘Bitcoin is my safe word.’ The Tesla chief later tweeted, ‘Just kidding, who needs a safe word anyway!?’
Dec. 20: On a Twitter exchange with Michael Saylor, chief executive officer of MicroStrategy Inc, who is also an advocate of digital currency, Musk asks about the possibility of converting ‘large transactions’ of Tesla Inc balance sheet into bitcoin.
Feb. 19: Musk says Tesla would stay away from cryptocurrencies, despite calling Bitcoin’s structure ‘brilliant’. ‘I don´t think it would be a good use of Tesla´s resources to get involved in crypto,’ he said in a podcast.
Feb. 20: In a podcast, Musk says paper money is ‘going away’ and cryptocurrencies would be a better way to transfer value.
Feb. 21: Musk tweets, ‘I still only own 0.25 BTC, which a friend sent me several years ago. Don’t have any crypto holdings.’
Feb 22: When asked about spamming by one of Musk´s Twitter followers, he says “I literally own zero cryptocurrency, apart from .25 BTC that a friend sent me many years ago.”
Oct 23: Musk comments on the cryptocurrency scam in which hackers stole about $180,000, posing as him on the micro-blogging site, “Twitter thought I got hacked & locked my account haha.”
Oct 20: News reports reveal The Boring Company, Musk´s underground tunneling enterprise, was not accepting payments in bitcoin for its popular flamethrowers, contrary to what was reported by several news websites a day earlier.
Nov 27: A former intern at SpaceX claims Musk was Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto. Musk in response says it was not true and “a friend sent me part of a BTC a few years, but I don’t know where it is.”