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CryptoPunk Owner Used Flash Loan to Grab Headlines

The NFT market can sometimes be crazy. But half a billion dollars of crazy? That’s next level.

Headlines were immediately hitting the wires about a $500 million purchase of a CryptoPunk NFT. It would be the highest value ever given to any NFT, by a very wide margin. But was it all as it appeared?

A more in depth analysis reveals the buyer of the NFT used a flash loan to make the purchase, presumably from himself or someone working with him.

Here’s how it went.

Shortly before 8pm ET on Thursday, 124.457 ETH (worth $530 million) was sent to a smart contract to make the purchase. But it turns out this money came from a flash loan. After making the purchase, the seller immediately sent the money back to where it came from.

He will not have made any profit from this transaction in itself – but might be hoping someone will see the publicity the stunt generated, believe it was real, and then buy the NFT for a larger amount than usual.

The devil is always in the detail.

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