Litecoin Pumps and Dumps on Fake Walmart News, Bitcoin, Ethereum React Too
Litecoin (LTC), the 12th most valuable cryptocurrency by market capitalization, gained more than 36% in less than one hour today, after a news report that turned out to be fake said the US retail giant Walmart had entered into “a major partnership” with Litecoin.
The news report, first published as a press release that appeared to come from Walmart Inc., was also picked up by the business news outlet CNBC, Reuters as well as other outlets, which all originally reported it as a real story. In a later correction, CNBC wrote that a Walmart spokesperson has “confirmed the press release is not authentic.”
The source of the fake press release remains unknown.
The price of litecoin jumped from USD 174 to 237 on Coinbase immediately following the news, before later giving back almost all the gains. At 14:40 UTC, LTC was still up about 4% from before the pump started, trading at USD 181.60.
Moreover, the fake news also appears to have had an impact on the broader crypto market, with both bitcoin (BTC) and ethereum (ETH) rising at the time of the news, before a selloff started at around 13:45 UTC, the same time as LTC sold off.
Similarly, Walmart’s stock price also opened up for the day in New York trading, where the opening of the stock market coincided with the release of the fake news at 13:30 UTC (09:30 ET). However, the stock quickly moved lower, and is currently trading at USD 145.5, 0.9% below its opening price.
Take a look at the journalism around it. Unchecked press release. Immediately picked up by many major outlets. But yes, it’s the crypto industry at fault. https://t.co/Ont2w4gamq— Ledger 🇺🇸 Prometheus of the Plebs (@ledgerstatus) September 13, 2021
Someone longs 9 figures of litecone, bribes some broke reporters to tweet some fake news [prob cost 100k], makes generational wealth— GCR (@GiganticRebirth) September 13, 2021
Surprised it doesn't happen more
Absolute mayhem, market turned to full blown scam in minutes
I can't believe the @litecoin twitter account tweeted a fake press release about itself.— Chris Blec (@ChrisBlec) September 13, 2021
There are just so many things that I can't believe right now.
Can Walmart at least offer jobs to those who bought the news?— Cred (@CryptoCred) September 13, 2021
(Updated at 16:11 UTC with additional details.)