May 13, 2019
Bitcoin goes parabolic - what's next for the king of crypto?
BTC/USD price rose to $7,580 over the weekend. This is a new 2019 high and the highest level since early September 2018.
While the price has consolidated back to $7000 at the time of press, the long-term trend remains strongly bullish as the price is trading above both the Tenkan-Sen(Conversion line in blue), Kijun-Sen(Base-line in red), and the Kumo Cloud(coloured green).
Bitcoin has experienced a parabolic rise in price over the past 10 days, culminating in 30% gains. Although the sentiment is overwhelmingly bullish, traders should pay attention to some bearish signs – like RSI becoming extended in overbought territory.
Daily BTC/USD RSI Chart
On the daily chart, Bitcoin has substantial support at $5800-$6000, which is where the mean line is found on the daily Bollinger Bands. A retest of this level is likely as BTC/USD will retrace before more upside is seen.
Looking at the chart, the Bitcoin price is clearly in a strong uptrend above the $6,700 local support area. Price is subject to a few swings moves in the interim, but Bitcoin is likely to climb above $7300 once again within the coming weeks.
BTC/USD 1D Bollinger Bands
It has become standard for Binance to dominate crypto headlines, and today was no exception. Binance experienced a hack in the late afternoon of May 7th, where funds were stolen totalled 7,074 BTC, or roughly 40.6 million USD. This is the first successful hack on the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange in its near two-year long existence.
The official statement released by Binance co-founder and chief executive Changpeng ‘CZ’ Zhao claimed that “one transaction” was all that was used to withdraw 7,074 BTC.
In addition to large amounts of cryptocurrency, hackers were also able to obtain large quantities of user information including API keys and two-factor authentication codes. The method used to compromise users accounts was a combination of phishing and viruses.
To mend the situation, Binance will use its Secure Asset Fund for Users to cover all losses. The Secure Asset Fund for Users, or SAFU, is a BNB-denominated fund that holds 10 per cent of all trading fees absorbed by the exchange.
On May 8th, one day after the initial hack, 99.97% of the stolen Bitcoin were distributed to seven different addresses. Six of the addresses received 1060.6 BTC while one address received 707.1 BTC.
The alleged addresses containing the stolen BTC are as follows:
bc1q3a5hd36jrqeseqa27nm40srkgxy8lk0v0tpjtp (Bech32 address holding 707.1 BTC)
bc1q2rdpyt8ed9pm56u9t0zjf94zrdu6gufa47pf62 (Bech32 address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
bc1qx3628eh9tdnm0uzculu8k6r2ywfkc5zns2hp0k (Bech32 address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
bc1qnf2ja3ffqzc3hskanjse6p8zag52fm6jgmmg9u (Bech32 address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
bc1qw7g5uxxl750t0h2fh9xajwuxp4qt634yh3vg5q (Bech32 address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
16SMGihY94H8UjRcxwsLnDtxRt7cRLkvoC (P2PKH address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
1MNwMURYw1LkPnnpda2DQkkUsXXeKL9pmR (P2PKH address holding 1,060.6 BTC)
Controversy emerged amongst the crypto community over the best course of action in recovering losses and establishing economic ownership over the lost funds. A proposal emerged to perform a rollback on the Bitcoin network to recover the funds lost during the hack. The proposal entailed revealing the private keys of the compromised accounts and assigning rewards to miners to unwind the hack. Although this is theoretically possible to perform, it was concluded that a rollback on the Bitcoin network of this scale would have catastrophic implications to Bitcoin and the crypto ecosystem at large.
The most significant implication being that a rollback would compromise Bitcoin’s core value proposition; being immutable. Even a friendly re-organization of the Bitcoin network that targeted the stolen funds would set a terrible precedent and destroy the perception of Bitcoin serving as a prudent, immutable store of value.
BTC Market Dominance
Bitcoin’s market dominance is a metric that tracks the percentage of the total cryptocurrency market capitalization of BTC relative to other digital assets in the market.
Bitcoin’s dominance has hit an 8-month high of 57%, suggesting that investor confidence is remaining bullish even as prices attempt to close above the iconic $6,000 USD level. This rise in market dominance means that the demand for Bitcoin is greater than the demand for other cryptocurrencies, or altcoins. While it is typical for investors to buy Bitcoin to fund altcoin purchases, that has not been the case as of late as altcoin prices have declined while investors purchase BTC for the long term.
May 6, 2019
Key Takeaways: Bitcoin breakout analysis, institutional interest survey and market cycle lifespans.
Over the past week, BTC/USD tested both support and resistance levels.
Following the breakout above the crucial $5500 resistance level in the early trading session of Friday, May 3rd, Bitcoin reached its new 2019 high of $5843. This price spike bolsters both short and long-term bullish views for Bitcoin, assuming the price holds strong above $5000. For the forecast to remain bullish, Bitcoin must turn the previous resistance level of $5500 into support. A clean retest of this support level followed by buyers coming into the market will aid in more fresh gains.
BTC/USD 4 hour chart
At the time of press, Bitcoin is trading at $5622 while most alt coins are succumbing to sell pressure. Bitcoin market dominance has increased by over 2% in the past week alone, indicating that traders and investors alike are not feeling prone to take on excessive risk.
Cycle Analysis from one of the Greats
In a tweet posted Thursday, Peter Brandt, a legendary commodity trader with decades of trading experience revealed his analysis depicting that Factor’s benchmark moving average for Bitcoin on the weekly chart has pivoted. The significance of this metric is such that the last time this was seen was when BTC moved from $340 to $20,000.
Although the Factor’s moving average has reversed, Brandt insists to note that Bitcoin is susceptible to one more significant pullback before pressing farther to the upside. Most likely in an attempt to weed out retail investors and panic sellers in the market.
While moving averages are great for filtering out noise and determining trend, it would be shortsighted to not implement another, more multifaceted indicator into the analysis process.
On-Balance Volume (OBV) is a technical trading signal that weighs both volume and price action to determine the level of trend momentum. OBV has made higher lows and continually trended higher since late-January, which confirms that Bitcoin may very well have found its bottom.
Will institutions fuel the next crypto bull run?
Many investors have long been watching the digital asset market to see how large investment groups will get involved. Speculators say that it will be these institutional investors that ultimately drive the next crypto bull market. A study conducted by Fidelity Investments eludes to further optimism among institutions.
Fidelity investments recently conducted a survey which polled 441 institutional investors, including family offices, hedge funds, foundations and endowments. The survey was conducted with the aim of obtaining information about institutional interest in the digital asset market.
The key takeaway from the survey was that roughly half of the institutions surveyed disclosed that they consider digital assets worthy of holding a place in their investment portfolios. This figure is overwhelmingly bullish as it eludes that widespread institutional adoption is imminent. Bitcoin and the greater crypto market embarking on another parabolic bull run is not unrealistic but moving the market to new all-time highs will require significant amounts of money, even more so than in years past.
April 29, 2019
Key Takeaways: Weekly TA for BTC/USD, the rise of BAT, Bitfinex & Tether scandal and Samsung’s crypto investment
Over the past week, BTC/USD price continued to bounce in-between support and resistance lines that formed an upward channel.
We have seen Bitcoin price rejected by a major resistance level at around $5500. Looking at the RSI on the daily chart, BTC is still holding above the level, which has served as support since the end of last year.
Although we have seen a Golden Cross on a daily chart (50-day Moving Average has crossed 200-day Moving Average), which was supposed to be a strong bullish signal, at the same time we have also seen a bearish divergence on RSI that resulted in a 10% price drop.
This occurrence is very similar to the 2014/2015 bear market. It appears Bitcoin is very closely repeating the pattern now.
In the previous bear market, the First Golden Cross was ignored, to which BTC experienced a correction. The Second Golden Cross started a bull run, which arguably could occur this time again.
BTC/USD daily chart
Currently, Bitcoin holds dominance over altcoins and went above 54%, as the majority of altcoins have experienced a correction.
One coin that has been doing really well, however, is BAT (Basic Attention Token) which showed an impressive 100% growth-rate in April.
Basic Attention Token
They have announced the launch of the Brave Ads function which allows users to receive rewards (BAT tokens) for watching adverts inside the browser.
BAT/USD daily chart
Samsung invests millions in Ledger
Samsung has invested $2.9 million in Ledger, a recognised startup that produces hardware wallets.
Samsung has been showing a lot of interest into crypto/blockchain space recently. The tech giant announced their latest smartphone Galaxy S10 will have a built-in crypto wallet. The market expects that they might even issue their own token in the future, but the rumours have not been officially confirmed by Samsung.
Tether and Bitfinex shady business
iFinex is a company that stands behind both Bitfinex and Tether and was founded in 2012 in Hong Kong. The Attorney General’s office has found out that Bitfinex allegedly used Tether reserve to hide $850 million loss. This resulted in massive amounts of USDT being moved from Bitfinex to other exchanges and wallets.
A month earlier, Tether changed the core principle behind the stable coin, where previously they claimed that every Tether is backed by a traditional currency they hold in reserve.
They currently give a very general statement that, “every tether is always 100% backed by our reserves, which include traditional currency and cash equivalents and, from time to time, may include other assets and receivables from loans made by Tether to third parties, which may include affiliated entities (collectively, “reserves”)”.
April 15, 2019
Key Takeaways from Market Watch
Current BTC chart explained, new coins added on Coinbase Pro, Facebook’s potential stablecoin in the pipeline and Ripple’s partnership with Tata CS.
Last week, the bearish divergence on a Relative Strength Index was confirmed, and BTC price broke through the supporting EMA ribbon on a 4-hourly chart with a 10% correction.
BTC/USD 4hr chart
It's a critical time regarding BTC price – should bears break below the uptrend line on the daily RSI, it could mean that Bitcoin will slide into a more significant correction on a daily time frame. To support this, we’ve also seen a bearish cross on the Stochastic RSI, giving us another bearish signal.
BTC/USD daily chart
EOS, MKR, REP on Coinbase Pro
Coinbase Pro announced the addition of 3 new tokens: EOS, Maker and Augur were added to the exchange. Here’s a brief overview of coins that are now available to trade on Coinbase Pro:
- EOS is a native cryptocurrency to EOS.IO, a blockchain protocol that operates as a decentralised operating system and smart contract platform. It has over $5 billion in market cap and is currently #5 on CoinMarketCap
- Maker MKR is a decentralised stable coin created on the Ethereum platform. The idea behind Maker Dao project is “to create a line of decentralised digital assets that would be tied to the value of real instruments such as currency, gold, etc.”
- REP is an Ethereum token created to be used on the Augur, a platform for predicting and reporting events, weather, markets and companies forecasting.
Facebook is allegedly raising one billion dollars in venture capital for its new crypto project. Although not officially confirmed, Facebook is reportedly working on creating a cryptocurrency that will be designed like a stable coin for WhatsApp and backed by fiat currencies.
Facebook has been heavily criticised for its poor handling of user’s data and privacy, which they intend to solve with blockchain technology. They have hired 30 DLT professionals for their blockchain department lead by David Mark (ex-Paypal president).
Update on Facebook's cryptocurrency: Sources tell me that Facebook is now looking to get VC firms to invest in the Facebook cryptocurrency project we reported on earlier this year. I hear they are targeting big sums -- as much as $1b.— Nathaniel Popper (@nathanielpopper) April 8, 2019
Ripple partnership with TCS
Ripple partners with the largest Indian IT company Tata Consultancy Services. Last year, they generated $19 billion in revenue.
With the integration of RippleNet into TCS’s operation, they will be able to facilitate transparent, fast and efficient cross border payments with their service solution, Quartz, which is based on Ripple blockchain. This means Tata Consultancy Services will now work closely with Ripple and all the clients of the company, such as Microsoft, GE and Citibank.
April 8, 2019
What an exciting week!
As you may be aware by now, this week, the price of Bitcoin surged over 30%. As Bitcoin broke the $4200 mark and major $4660 resistance level, a significant amount of short positions were closed that stimulated further growth.
Looking at the Fibonacci Retracement levels, the price was rejected twice at the 100% level and theoretically, the next target would be at around $5800. With that being said, both RSI and Stochastic RSI has reached “overbought territory”.
BTC/USD daily chart
There hasn’t been a bigger green daily candle since December 2017 and some speculate it is at the beginning of a bull run.
But is it?
One of the explanations suggests the reason for the large price pump was caused by algorithmic trading of $100 million worth of BTC orders synchronised across 3 major exchanges (Coinbase, Kraken and Bitstamp). Judging by the time of the rapid price growth, it is reasonable to assume that the pump originated from Asia, as it occurred at 4:30 UTC.
According to Crypto Fund Research, algorithmic trading in crypto is on the rise, with 17 algo or quantitative funds started since September. Some crypto funds that use automated software managed to gain up to 10% profit per month throughout 2018, while the majority were losing money in the bear market.
The big spike in price also triggered interest from the general public and made Bitcoin climb up to the 7th place on US Google search engine.
BTC 24h volume
It is important to note that the 24h volume on Coinmarketcap.com has reached an all-time high, exceeding the volume back in January 2017 (over $23 billion).
BTC/USD log 2014-2019
By looking at the logarithmic chart, we are still closely following the pattern of the previous 2014-2015 bear market, where, after the “final shakeout”, BTC price moved sideways where it broke through the 200-day moving average for the first time before retracing back down and eventually starting a bull run.
The 2014-2015 bear market is being often referred to due to its undeniable similarity to the pattern we are seeing now.
SEC regulatory framework
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has published a new regulatory guideline for token issuers. It focuses on how and when cryptocurrencies should be classified as security and outlines a number of factors that need to be considered, including:
- The expectation of profit
- A single or group of entities that are responsible for certain tasks within the network
- Whether a group is creating or supporting the market for a digital asset
An even bigger takeaway here is the fact that we are getting some regulatory clarity with regards to cryptocurrencies, which is very good news for the crypto space.
A lack of regulatory clarity has been a big show-stopper for a lot of institutional organisations. Many of the organisations do not want to be liable for any potential legal hurdles that may arise if the SEC or CFTC comes up with harsh regulations on crypto.
Even though the regulation is only an interim framework, it has huge implications for the fundamentals.
April 1, 2019
Looking at the 4 hour BTC chart, we can see that BTC has quietly broken above the key resistance level of $4000 USD. The infamous $4000 level has been a rock solid resistance area for all of 2019. Therefore, BTC closing above that level for multiple days in a row is very significant. Unfortunately, the price hike above $4000 has been done with light volume, indicating that market participants are still hesitant to jump into the market just yet. This can be explained by the fact that additional resistance still remains just above where price currently resides. If price is to continue to press higher, the BTC must close above $4300 with much more significant volume.
Looking at price action for the month of March, we can see that price has been finding support on the 200 period moving average (green line on the chart). At the time of press, the 200 MA depicts support being found around the $3900 USD level.
Major resistance has been surpassed, but additional resistance remains overhead. A failure to surpass the remaining overhead resistance found at $4300 would greatly increase the likelihood that BTC will continue to chop sideways in the near future.
Binance Coin (BNB) Price Continues to Press Higher Following Launchpad Update
Binance’s BNB token has been hands down the best performing top 20 market cap cryptocurrency of 2019. In fact, since the start of the new year, the price of Binance Coin against Bitcoin has risen over 175% and over 200% against the US dollar.
So what has lead to such outstanding performance?
At the start of each quarter, BNB undergoes a coin burn eliminating a portion of the circulating supply. Not only are the tokens destroyed, decreasing the supply, but they are acquired or bought back by the exchange itself. The process of burning tokens provides a catalyst for price surges - as supply decreases, demand increases.
Another driver for Binance Coin’s outstanding performance is the creation of its own blockchain, Binance Chain. Originally Binance Coin was built onto the Ethereum blockchain, making it an ERC20 token, but this is likely to change in the near future. Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, the CEO of Binance, announced that BNB will swap from the Ethereum blockchain and move to their main net after the DEX launches in 2019. This initiative will allow projects to fundraise and launch their own tokens upon its mainnet. The fundraising will be done by using BNB as the base currency, fostering a further use case for the token.
Complimenting Binance Chain is Binance DEX. Binance DEX is a decentralized exchange that is built on top of Binance Chain. The Binance DEX interface resembles a strikingly similar interface to that of the original Binance exchange. Although the exchanges resemble one another, there are various differences between the two. Binance DEX will, as the name eludes, be a decentralized exchange. This means that there will be a higher level of security associated with funds, as well as the users personal ownership of private keys.
Binance Launchpad is a fundraising platform upon which tokens can be launched. This concept is very similar to the Ethereum platform fundraising ICOs. The Launchpad holds one token sale per month, and the plan is to continue to list one every month in 2019. On March 24th, CZ made an announcement of the exchanges update to the Launchpad token sale format, causing the price of BNB to instantly surge 15%. The most notable aspect of the update is the so called ‘lottery system’, which will replace the method in which tokens are distributed during token sales. Further, users interested in participating in the token sale must hold BNB in their wallets for at least 20 days prior to the token sale. Tickets will be distributed to participants in proportion to the users BNB balance. Each ticket entitles the user to purchase $500 of whatever new token is on sale through the Launchpad. Nevertheless, participants will need to have at least 100 BNB in their balance. At the coin’s current price, this will cost around $1,700.
Binance’s consistent innovation in the crypto ecosystem, alongside its implementation of its native cryptocurrency, makes its is no surprise that BNB is outperforming the rest of the cryptocurrency market.
Bitcoin Difficulty Reaches 3-Month High - How will Price React?
In the past two weeks, the difficulty of the Bitcoin network has increased by over 6%. This puts it at a three-month high after climbing 25% since late December. Could this be a catalyst for a monumental price move to come?
In the past, there has been a linear relationship established between the price of Bitcoin and its network difficulty.
Network difficulty is a measure of how hard it is to mine a Bitcoin block. Mining involves guessing a random number, the nonce, to obtain a block hash of specified format. This becomes a determining factor of whether Bitcoin mining is a profitable activity or not.
Difficulty and hashrate positively correlate with one another, so falling Bitcoin price makes it less profitable to mine - which, in turn, reduces the difficulty.
So as difficulty rises, shouldn't price?
In theory, the price should increase as difficulty increases, but often times there is a delay between difficulty rising and bitcoin value rising. One should note that although the two are correlated, the relationship is not a universal indication of impending bullish momentum. Last year the Bitcoin difficulty increased to it's all-time high of nearly 7.5 trillion during the period where Bitcoin lost close to 85% of its value.
A second metric that shadows Bitcoin prices and network difficulty is the networks global hashrate. The network hashrate is a measurement of the speed at which each hash from the Bitcoin code is solved by the miners in the Bitcoin network. This figure is indicative of the total computing power dedicated to securing the Bitcoin blockchain. From January to March 2019, the average daily hashrate increased from 4.0 exahashes to 4.7 exahashes per second, representing over a 16% growth rate in just two months.
The Bitcoin protocol attempts to keep new block discovery constant at 10 minutes per block. This means that the difficulty of discovering new blocks must automatically adjust to ensure that the discovery time is maintained. The calibration can be done by increasing the difficulty when the hashrate climbs or decreasing the difficulty when the hashrate declines. This calibration process is most commonly known as difficulty re-targeting.
Typically, overall hashrate increasing dramatically is a result of either increased profitability in mining Bitcoin due to an increase in price, or the result of more efficient mining hardware being deployed online for the first time.
March 25, 2019
At the moment, Bitcoin is still trading inside of its range, which at the time of writing is $3,969. Falling short of closing above the $4,000 USD resistance level on the daily chart earlier last week, the bears made their presence known in the market. Contrary to typical weekend volatility increases in the crypto market, Bitcoin experienced almost zero price movement over the last 36 hours - leading analysts to speculate on a big move coming soon. Sentiment in the market remains positive, but another failed attempt to break the psychological resistance in the near future could reignite bearish momentum and attract selling pressure, ultimately pushing price down to local lows.
In reference to last week’s market watch, the bullish case for bitcoin might very well be still valid.
The 50-day moving average colored red crossing over the 100-day moving average colored in blue coupled with Bitcoin inching higher into the Ichimoku cloud (in the cloud, boundaries signify levels of support and resistance) indicates that buyers are present in the market. These technical indicators hint at significant support to be found between $3,600 USD and $3,700 USD. Additionally, a kumo-twist (highlighted green on the chart) has occured on the daily time frame, which indicates a trend reversal. The last time a bullish kumo-twist occured on the daily chart was on November 15th of 2016, when Bitcoin was trading at a price of $610.
Click here to learn more about the Ichimoku Cloud.
Two steps closer to mass adoption
Switzerland's largest online retailer now accepting Bitcoin as a method of payment
Digitec Galaxus, coined as the ‘Amazon’ of Switzerland, is now accepting Bitcoin and multiple other cryptocurrencies as payment. The new payment option was developed in part with Swiss e-payment specialist Datatrans AG and Coinify. The initiative was spearheaded by the CIO and co-founder of Digitec Galaxus who says "cryptocurrencies are fascinating and likely to become relevant in e-commerce - we want to support this development.”
While many have doubted cryptocurrency being a valid method of payment due to high levels of volatility, Digitec Galaxus remedies the ongoing price fluctuations by immediately converting crypto payments to Swiss Francs. Initially the new payment option will only be available to swiss customers. If the initiative proves to be successful, the company will eventually extend the option to german customers as well.
Fortune 500 giant Avnet now accepting Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash as a method of payment
Avnet, one of the worlds largest distributors of electronic components and embedded solutions, is now accepting both Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) as methods of payment. With revenues of about $20 billion per year, Avnet ranks in at number 128 on the Fortune 500 list, making the announcement to accept cryptocurrency as payment monumental. The electronics giant explained that it wants to provide its customers with more convenient ways to complete their financial transactions so they can focus on developing their products - not on how to pay for them.
Avnet also revealed that is has already received several multi-million dollar cryptocurrency transactions within the first month of accepting crypto payments. Avnet’s move to accept cryptocurrency is part of its larger mission to revolutionize the crypto landscape and strategically position the company to thrive in the next generation of financial payment processes.
CoinMarketCap Crypto Indices Launch on Nasdaq, Bloomberg, Reuters
@CoinMarketCap launches 2 #cryptocurrency #indices today on NASDAQ GIDS, Bloomberg, TR Refinitiv and Börse Stuttgart. It covers Top 200 crypto and is the most comprehensive #index to date. We're excited to bring crypto data to the wider financial market!https://t.co/QHXzg9KLox— CoinMarketCap (@CoinMarketCap) March 20, 2019
CoinMarketCap, the cryptocurrency industry's leading provider of price and market capitalization data announced the launch of two inclusive indices on financial data feeds from Nasdaq Global index Service(GIDS), Bloomberg Terminal, Thomson Reuters Eikon(Refinitiv) and Germany’s Börse Stuttgart.
CoinMarketCap announced on wednesday that the benchmark indices
will be the most comprehensive crypto index to date. Brendan Chez, the CEO of CoinMarketCap, stated: “These indices will promote greater accessibility to cryptocurrency data in an easier-to-digest format.”
For Bloomberg Terminals, the headline index called CMC Crypto 200 Index [CMC 200] will include Bitcoin along with the following 199 top cryptocurrencies by market cap. The other headline index, called CMC 200 EX, was created to track the overall market performance, in the absence of Bitcoin. At the time of press, Bitcoin (BTC) dominance comprises roughly 50% of the total Crypto Market.
March 18, 2019
Bitcoin golden cross confirmed on a daily chart as the shorter term (50 days) moving average line crossed above the longer term one (100 days). This is considered to be a strong bullish signal. Still, it is important to note that this time it was not supported by high volume and the more significant golden cross would be if the 50-day MA crosses over 200-day MA. At this point, it is very far from happening.
The 4-hour BTC/USD chart for the past week clearly shows an example of how the EMA ribbon starts to lose its significance when the market is moving sideways. The EMA ribbon needs an established trend to be useful support or resistance level indicator.
Is 2019 the year of altcoins?
This year kicked off with altcoins thriving while bitcoin holds still. Here’s a roundup of what has taken place so far this year:
- The biggest (inorganic) growth of Enjin Coin. The coin reached over 560% against BTC within less than a month. Half of its growth took place based on the unconfirmed rumour about partnering with Samsung on the latest Galaxy S10 model before it rallied again when it was confirmed.
- Binance Coin surged 150% against Bitcoin, making it one of the top performing altcoins of 2019.
- Litecoin shows a 100% growth against USD and is about to complete a 50-day and 200-day moving average golden cross as well. Moreover, it is now forming an ascending triangle which is, of course, another bullish pattern.
- Tron went on 87% of growth before going on a 30% correction.
- EOS/USD reached a 75% growth rate in the last three months.
Bundestag hearing on DLT for financial services
Last week, the German federal parliament (Bundestag) hearing on the progress of creating a legal framework for distributed ledger technology for financial services took place.
So far, the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) and the Federal Ministry of Finance have yet to establish necessary legal regulations that are required to unleash the full potential of blockchain technology. Here are the reasons and concerns that were mentioned by participants in the hearing:
- Despite rapid technological development, there is a lack of research funding and expertise in the industry.
- Some question whether there is a need to create new laws concerning blockchain technology in the first place.
- High tension between the GDPR and blockchain technology.
- The negative public perception towards blockchain technology, associating it with money laundering activities.
ETH: not a security?
Throughout the past week, most of the major crypto news outlets claimed that Jay Clayton, the chairman of SEC confirmed that Etherium is not a security under U.S. law.
But what is actually the case?
First, in the original signed statement, Clayton claims, “A digital asset may be offered and sold initially as a security because it meets the definition of an investment contract, but that designation may change over time if the digital asset later is offered and sold in such a way that it will no longer meet that definition.” This statement is hardly a confirmation, but rather an expressed opinion about the potential possibility for tokens to lose it’s security status if the requirements are met.
Second, in this letter, Clayton actually does not specify Ethereum at all but speaks about tokens in general. Despite that fact, this whole ordeal is still considered to be a piece of bullish news, because this means that many ICOs that may have been securities would actually lose that status and therefore would not have to comply with securities regulation.
Did you know?
In order to prevent mistyping and sending funds to the wrong address, Bitcoin wallet addresses don’t contain the following characters: "0", "O", "l", or "I". This takes place thanks to an encoding scheme called Base58Check that removes those alphanumeric characters from generated Bitcoin addresses.
March 11, 2019
Last week BTC crossed the daily EMA ribbon twice. First, it went downside, but then bulls quickly took over and brought it back up the following day. For the third time, the price got rejected at the resistance level at around $3,870 and it seems like bitcoin does not have enough power to break through it yet.
In addition, we are approaching a bearish cross on the weekly Stochastic RSI, which historically indicates a major correction.
Binance Coin sees over 30% growth
With a 36% growth, BNB was the best performing coin last week. The coin has been performing really well since the end of 2018, despite the bear market. Binance coin jumped from 10th to 7th place on CoinMarketCap list and currently has a little over $2 million in market capitalization. One of the reasons that contributed to such a progressive growth is the recently launched decentralized Binance exchange testnet. Another reason is the Binance Launchpad, a token launch platform, that gained a lot of attention for listing hot ICOs like BitTorrent and Celer. Binance burns their coins quarterly and the last burn that took place at the beginning of this year was worth $9.4 million.
Sending Bitcoin over radio waves
The international Bitcoin lightning payment which was previously only sent via the internet is now possible to make using ham radio as well. Not only is this a very new method of bitcoin transaction but also, in certain cases, a useful one as it allows users to send bitcoin without internet access. That particular Lightning Network invoice transmission demonstrates that there is an alternative to internet transaction, which can be a subject of censorship (ie. China) or tight restriction (ie. North Korea).
Coinbase and Neutrino situation
Coinbase received a lot of criticism lately for acquiring Neutrino, the surveillance company known for selling users data to governments. Despite major concerns and discontent from users and the crypto community (check out #DeleteCoinbase on Twitter), Coinbase did not address the issue properly at first. However, as protestation grew, Brian Armstrong Coinbase CEO was forced to react and published a blog post explaining how they “had a gap in diligence process” and claiming that employees who previously worked in the controversial software firm Hacking Team will transition out of their new roles at Coinbase.
Bitcoin demand grows in Venezuela
The demand for Bitcoin in Venezuela has reached an all-time high of Bs. 25,16 billion, equivalent to $63 million, last week. Quick reminder: The Venezuelan bolívar has been the main currency in Venezuela since August 20, 2018. The currency was introduced as a solution to their previous currency hyperinflation problem, but failed to gain the trust of Venezuelans in the highly unstable situation in the country. Bitcoin became a safe haven for countries like Venezuela or Argentina that are currently experiencing a fiat currency crisis.
March 4, 2019
The channel at around $4,000 level that previously served as a support area has now turned into resistance. The price has been tested twice last week, which means that the next time it reaches that limit we should see a major movement.
The price didn’t see a lot of action in the past week, so let’s have a look at the bigger picture.
On the longer term, it seems like a new bullish ascending triangle is forming. Price level around $4,300 provides a strong resistance line since the end of last year, while higher lows are establishing a support line.
Bitcoin shorts are currently at a very low level that historically indicates an upcoming increase in shorting. Last time it was at such a low level (in July 2018) followed by a 130% increase of shorts and led to a price drop from $7,445 to $6,488 within less than a month.
Ethereum hard fork
After a number of security-related delays, two anticipated upgrades, Constantinople and St. Petersburg, have been officially activated on the Ethereum network. Ethereum was supposed to hard fork earlier this year with Constantinople, however, after finding a significant flaw in the smart contract security, St. Petersburg was introduced to resolve the issue. Constantinople, being a maintenance and optimization update, provides speed, efficiency, energy and consumption improvements. However, it also affects Ethereum miners, who will now instead of three tokens per block will only receive two.
Enjin Coin sees over 200% growth
One coin that has been growing exponentially over the past week is Enjin Coin. The reason for that is an unconfirmed rumour that Enjin is going to back a blockchain wallet for Samsung's latest Galaxy S10 model and that led the price of the coin to rise over 200%.
What’s Enjin, you ask? Enjin is a gaming coin that allows users to create blockchain-based games to prevent fraud and make trading between games possible. They also provide wallets where users can hold several cryptocurrencies, which supposedly will be available on Samsung's new smartphone.
XRP on Coinbase Pro
XRP has finally been added to Coinbase Pro, which is something that has been expected and long-awaited. Considering that Ripple is one of the top 3 cryptocurrencies and has a strong community, it took a while for Coinbase to list XRP. Users can now trade XRP against USD, EUR and BTC.
New digital assets regulations in Russia
Vladimir Putin has approved a list of orders that include regulation of the digital economy, and it consists of following objectives:
- Creation of federal legislation aimed at developing a digital economy
- Determining the procedure for conducting civil-law transactions in the digital form
- Creating a regulatory framework for digital financial assets
- The attraction of financial resources using digital technologies
The deadline for the Russian government to create regulations is set to run out on 1 July 2019.
February 25, 2019
For those who follow bitcoin’s technical analysis the past week has carried quite a significant shift in pattern. Bitcoin broke through a key resistance level, bringing bullish sentiment to the market. The price has been staying above the daily EMA ribbon for most of the entire week and served as a support level for a coming crash on Sunday. In addition, the Relative Strength Index has also reached overbought territory and got corrected over the weekend.
Binance Chain Testnet and DEX launched
Binance’s own blockchain testnet called Binance chain and its new decentralized exchange Binance DEX are now live. Binance chain is claimed to have low latency, only one confirmation finality, low fees and a delegated proof of stake system. Currently, users can only buy and sell pegged coins on Binance DEX, which are redeemable for real tokens back over on the centralized exchange.
Samsung integrates cryptocurrency key storage in its latest Galaxy S10 model
Among its new security features like Samsung’s Knox defense-grade security, Galaxy S10 will include “secure storage backed by hardware, which houses your private keys for blockchain-enabled mobile services”. As far as crypto adoption is concerned, Samsung has sold over 290 million smartphones in 2018. However, the major question remains whether Samsung will develop their own full-scale wallet or will they just provide the support for private key storage for developers to produce their own secure crypto wallets.
Tipping through Bitcoin Lightning Network on Twitter
Tippin.me is a browser extension (currently available only on Chrome and Firefox) that allows Twitter users to tip with Bitcoin through Lightning Network. The project is still in its beta phase and needs further improvements and development. Elizabeth Stark, the CEO of Lightning Labs, shared that she has already been tipped for a tweet.
Elon Musk’s view on crypto
Last week Elon Musk made a statement about crypto in his podcast Interview ARK Invest:
“Paper money is going away. And crypto is a far better way to transfer values than a piece of paper, that’s for sure.” Being one of the most influential people in the world (ranked #25 on the Forbes list). Elon’s opinion on Bitcoin and crypto definitely has some weight.
Google introduces new bitcoin keyboard currency symbol
Major tech companies like Google are starting to see the potential of Bitcoin and are increasingly implementing it into their products. Users can now see the Bitcoin symbol on their Google keyboard (only on iOS mobile devices) listed among major traditional currencies like the Dollar, Euro or Pound.
Although some of the news on their own are not exactly groundbreaking, in compilation they reflect a general sentiment of legitimizing crypto, spreading recognition and mass adoption along with making it easier for people to use Bitcoin.
February 18, 2019
The bitcoin price range has been trapped within a narrow channel moving slightly downward for most of the week, breaking out of it shortly on Sunday, before coming back to the channel again.
On a bigger picture, we have two falling wedges formed within a major triangle. With lower highs and higher low, we are approaching the tip, causing the bitcoin price to move sideways. The triangle provides us with major support and resistance lines since the end of last year. Accompanied by a decreasing volume, it brings us closer to a major breakout.
Despite the prolonged bear market, the fundamentals are going strong:
Two first U.S. Pension funds have dived into investing in crypto
Fairfax County Employees and Fairfax County Police pension plans have invested $40 million into Morgan Creek’s new blockchain venture fund. This shows that even in this bear market, institutional investors still have trust in the crypto industry, opening doors wider for the institutional market.
Nasdaq to add BLX and ELX
On February 25th, Nasdaq has announced its intention to add Bitcoin and Ethereum Indices (Bitcoin Liquid Index and Ethereum Liquid Index) to its Global Index Data Service. This will be made in partnership with Brave New Coin, a blockchain data and research company from New Zealand.
Twitter, Square and Lightning Labs
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter and Square, has been actively involved in the Bitcoin Lightning Network. He gained lots of attention for picking up the Lighting Torch on Twitter (#LNTrustChain). Dorsey is supposedly working with Lightning Labs to implement bitcoin’s Lightning Network into the Square Cash App.
Growth of Lightning Network nodes
The chart above demonstrates the rapid growth of Lightning Network Nodes with channels within a year. This correlates with the Network Capacity that has raised 39% in the past 30 days, which currently makes about 685 BTC or over $2 million (source: https://1ml.com/statistics)
Bitcoin ATM Installations Growth is at the all-time high
As of February 15th, there are 4347 ATMs that have been installed worldwide, which makes it double the number of ATMs in December 2017 when BTC price was at its highest.