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The Game Theory Behind Russia's New Crypto Policy

Sticking it to the U.S., a hedge against China or both?

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This episode is sponsored by Nexo, Arculus, FTX US and

On today’s episode, NLW explores possible reasons why Russia’s recent 180 on cryptocurrencies might make sense. As the country prepares to legalize and regulate cryptos as a type of currency, he looks at things from the lens of Russia’s relationship with the U.S. and desire to avoid being cut off from the SWIFT network, as well as from the lens of Russia’s relationship with China, and China’s (possible) desire to have a non-sovereign alternative to a future digital yuan.

“The Breakdown” is written, produced by and features Nathaniel Whittemore aka NLW, with editing by Rob Mitchell, research by Scott Hill and additional production support by Eleanor Pahl. Adam B. Levine is our executive producer and our theme music is “Countdown” by Neon Beach. The music you heard today behind our sponsor is “Vision” by OBOY. Image credit: masterSergeant/iStock/Getty Images Plus, modified by CoinDesk. Join the discussion at