Bitcoin Price Growth, Global Adoption Depend on Japan’s Confidence in Bitcoin

Bitcoin Price Growth, Global Adoption Depend on Japan’s Confidence in Bitcoin

  

Bitcoin Price Growth, Global Adoption Depend on Japan’s Confidence in Bitcoin

As long as Japan does not fail in what seems to be an effort that is making Bitcoin bigger, the world's top digital currency would always be a success. One latest example is the adoption of the AML/KYC rules for Bitcoin exchanges in the country. Like China, Japan is now impacting meaningfully on the Bitcoin market whenever the third largest economy in the world comes out with a move that causes a change.

Bitcoin price affected

With the recent development in which Japan recognized Bitcoin as a legal method of payment starting Saturday, April 1, the Bitcoin price has seen a steady climb over the $1100 range by the start of Monday. The recovery from the dip where the Bitcoin price had been over a week ago when the deadlock over the scalability issue had heightened has been attributed to a growth in Bitcoin demand from Japanese consumers after the government passed a law which basically says officially that Bitcoin users will not be taxed directly.

Rather, it brings up the issue of AML/KYC which caused a heated debate. Some users are in favor of it preferring exchanges operating legally so that they can be law-abiding, pay taxes on behalf of users and guarantee some form of protection for users’ money.

New law

Japan’s new law has been on debate for months following the collapse of the Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange. The law’s passing brings Bitcoin exchanges under Anti-Money Laundering/Know Your Customer rules as it is the case in China. The exercise in verification will expectedly increase trust in Bitcoin and probably forestall a recurrence of the Mt. Gox case.

Coincheck's Kagayaki Kawabata told Cointelegraph:

"While market cap and usage of cryptocurrency is scaling significantly in past few years, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are something that can't be ignored. The Mt. Gox incident took place in Tokyo. This experience I think has made Japan decided to regulate them in order to protect the customers. I think other countries will follow Japan if this new regulation works out."

Tax issues

The AML/KYC process will also serve as a link between the government and Bitcoin which is what many people believe is still missing for the ecosystem to grow into a regulated market. For Bitsquare's Ken Shishido, the development is a result of years of industry effort in lobbying policy makers and not necessarily the government taking a proactive approach nor wanting to make Bitcoin bigger and better.

Tax implication is not finalized yet but it is a huge deal that consumption tax is now officially exempted, he adds. From China to Japan and other countries, it is now clearer that governments are on the way of recognizing Bitcoin as a financial instrument. But to make the digital currency go mainstream everyday users need to support it as a common practice.

Why Japan Matters

Japan does not seem at all worried by the general attitude of some countries to digital currencies like Bitcoin. The country’s level of confidence in Bitcoin is overwhelming despite the negative history it has had with the digital currency. Based on this level of trust and interest in the currency, the success of the ongoing experimentation will help show how possible legislations can work with Bitcoin.

It will go a very long way to draw other countries that are still skeptical about Bitcoin into the fold as well be a good form of advertisement to the wider global community – especially governments. The legality of the state is always a boost for the justification of Bitcoin. For a big economy like Japan to trust Bitcoin as a payment method speaks volumes. It is a sign that it could be a significant tool that could bring advantages over sentiments that point to negativity.

Shishido says:

“Not sure other developed countries will follow suite anytime soon but maybe countries like Singapore, Hong Kong, Estonia, Switzerland and etc. If some countries do recognize it as a legal tender, it will be a game changer. Japan’s legal status is “currency-like property with consumption tax exemption. If one country recognizes it as a legal tender, all United Nations country will need to acknowledge, too.”

One other factor to note about Japan's impact on the Bitcoin price is that when it happens, the price increase tends to be usually real – it would correct at some point but not to its initial take-off point. Relatedly, one of the countries picking up on a similar move is Mexico which is working on the first draft of a fintech law that will make its central bank define the regulation that will apply to digital assets such as Bitcoin based on two criteria: widespread adoption of the public and the protocols, rules and mechanisms that allow their generation, identification, division and control.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

The Big Three: How China, India, Japan Set Pace For Bitcoin

The Big Three: How China, India, Japan Set Pace For Bitcoin

   The Big Three: How China, India, Japan Set Pace For Bitcoin

The Recent behavior of Bitcoin

reveals that developmental events around certain nations make huge impacts on the cryptocurrency. The most significant among these nations are China, India and most recently, Japan. With the mainstream adoption of Bitcoin in Japan and the subsequent acceptance of the cryptocurrency by several stores across the Asian country, Bitcoin has responded by its most recent surge in price, rising significantly above the $1,200 mark in the process.

Strength in numbers

Whether positive or negative, news and events out of the aforementioned Asian giants are always well respected by Bitcoin as an entity and the community as a whole.

Michael Vogel, CEO of Netcoins, says:

“China and India represent a significant portion of the world's population and each has a rapidly growing middle and wealthy classes. Both of these countries are also experiencing turmoil with government imposed capital controls, so the importance of Bitcoin is much more apparent to its citizens as opposed to North America, for example.”

One of the major issues that have come up repeatedly within these Asian climes is the attempt of the government to regulate Bitcoin. Earlier in 2017, there were a few significant events and pronouncements by both the Chinese and Indian government concerning the use of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

The majority of Bitcoin users have seen these government interventions as events that could negatively affect the growth and development of Bitcoin. On the contrary, these efforts by governments to control the use of Bitcoin may be having a rather positive effect on the cryptocurrency.

Governments are indirectly working for Bitcoin

Simon Dixon, CEO of BnkToTheFuture.com, believes that governments are driving demand in Bitcoin whether they know it or not. He continues by exemplifying the developments in India, where the government's war on cash was an attempt to force bank adoption in India. Dixon notes that India has less trust for banks than many other nations so some are experimenting with Bitcoin instead.

In addition to this, Japan has chosen to regulate Bitcoin exchanges which mean traditional financial institutions are now able to offer Bitcoin to their clients bringing in more demand. China has decided to implant tougher regulations on Chinese exchanges driving a huge spike in the peer to peer Bitcoin market in China and eventually more trust in the exchanges when they allow withdrawals again.

Dixon says:

“What is clear is that no matter what the government does, it is driving more and more demand for the two Bitcoin markets – regulated Bitcoins through exchanges and unregulated peer to peer Bitcoin. All these approaches show the rest of the world that government action drives Bitcoin demand in many unintended ways.”

Japan is a pacesetter

Another important factor identified by Vogel which may be responsible for the Asian dominance in Bitcoin is the fact that Asian countries, Japan, in particular, have always been ahead of the curve with mainstream adoption of new technology. Cell phones, mobile gaming, and mobile payments all gained popularity in Asia years before Europe and the US. It seems that Bitcoin is following a similar trajectory.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

These Investors Bought the Firm Behind Bitcoin’s Self-Proclaimed Inventor

These Investors Bought the Firm Behind Bitcoin’s Self-Proclaimed Inventor

  

A company built around the research of Craig Wright,

who has claimed to have invented the bitcoin cryptocurrency, has been sold to a private equity firm in a deal the company says is the biggest to date involving bitcoin's underlying blockchain technology. The deal swings the spotlight once again on to Wright, a 46-year-old computer scientist who is the cryptocurrency's most controversial figure. He hopes to remain central to the technology's future, telling Reuters the goal is to build bitcoin into a global "system with no ruler, no king."

"We will scale and grow bitcoin to become what it was envisioned to be," he said. "All I do is to help grow the use of bitcoin, and I want to see it in daily use by at least a billion people on-chain. We have the funds, the people and the technology to do this." According to a news release on Thursday, Malta-based High Tech Private Equity Fund SICAV bought nChain Holdings, "the world leader in blockchain-centric research and development." It put no value on the deal and did not mention Wright. Reuters previously identified nChain, formerly known as EITC Holdings, as Wright's vehicle for filing hundreds of bitcoin and blockchain-related patents.

U.K. records confirm that the target company—under both its EITC and nChain names—already filed more than 80 bitcoin and blockchain-related patents. A person close to the deal said $300 million had been invested in nChain, but it was not clear over what period of time. The Maltese fund did not respond to emails asking for comment.

Reuters reported last year that EITC planned to file hundreds of patents related to the blockchain, the distributed ledger technology that underpins cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. The financial industry and others are exploring its potential. The fund is managed by Liechtenstein-based Accuro Fund Solutions, part of Zurich-based Accuro Group. Accuro did not respond to an emailed request for comment.

DIVISIVE FIGURE

Wright remains a divisive figure in the bitcoin world. After failing to convince many in the bitcoin community that he was Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous founder of bitcoin, Wright retreated from view last year. Reuters reported last month that Wright was working with Calvin Ayre, a Canadian online gambling tycoon, to build a patent portfolio, though its purpose was not clear. Ayre was not immediately available for comment.

nChain said in an emailed response to questions from Reuters that neither Ayre nor Wright had a stake in it before or after the sale. It said the company previously acquired Wright's assets and intellectual property, and he now held the post of chief scientist. Although it was not possible to confirm Wright's identity as Nakamoto, a Reuters investigation found he was deeply involved in the early development of bitcoin and had told Australian tax officials he possessed more than 1 million bitcoin—worth $1.2 billion at the current exchange rate.

Patent lawyers have noted that open-source technologies like bitcoin are not easy to patent, and even if patents are approved, they are not always easy to defend. Thursday's announcement is the first time nChain has publicly acknowledged it is filing patents. Without confirming how many bitcoins he owns, Wright told Reuters he would never "dump bitcoin." "I will sell when I do this for goods on a daily basis, or I will go down with it. Past the basics of my family's well-being, all I have is dedicated to building the systems and institutions needed to make bitcoin successful globally," he said.

The news release also shed light on what Wright and nChain might do with its patents. nChain this year "intends to make some of its intellectual property assets available to the blockchain community through open-source software and royalty-free licensing." It invited interested parties to register via email. nChain's patent filings, seen by Reuters, range from the storage of medical documents to Wi-Fi security. Investors have spent more than $1.5 billion on blockchain and bitcoin start-ups over the past four years, according to CB Insights, an Internet research company.

The company said it was also working on software tools and applications to support the growth of blockchain. These include a software to develop applications on the bitcoin blockchain, solutions for bitcoin blockchain scalability, inventions to improve security, on-chain scripting for smart contracts, and a decentralized trading platform that uses autonomous agents. The company also called for a neutral standards body to be set up to coordinate bitcoin's development.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin bears ramp up bets virtual currency will fall

Bitcoin bears ramp up bets virtual currency will fall

Short interest on Bitfinex has surpassed long interest for the first time since February

  

Bets that the bitcoin price

will fall have surpassed bets that it will rise for the first time since February on one of the world’s largest digital currency exchanges, stoking contrarian speculation that the digital currency could be headed for a new all-time high.

Open short interest on Bitfinex surpassed long interest on Thursday for the first time since February. The last time shorts eclipsed longs, the bitcoin price gained nearly $300 over the following three weeks, rising from $993 on Feb 13 to an all-time high of $1,285. Bitfinex, a top digital currency exchange by trading volume, is also one of only a handful to allow customers to trade on margin.

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In financial markets,

short interest is sometimes viewed as a contrarian indicator because it leaves assets vulnerable to what’s known as a short squeeze. In a short squeeze, investors who bet against the asset are forced to buy it back to close out their positions at a loss, causing the price to move sharply in the other direction.

The buildup in shorts “proves that the bitcoin scaling debate isn’t over yet,” said Chris Dannen, a founding partner at Iterative Instinct, a small New York-based private-equity fund that trades crypto-assets. Dannen was referring to a rift in the bitcoin community over how to upgrade bitcoin’s software to allow the network to process transactions more quickly and efficiently.

That debate has quieted down in recent weeks as bitcoin miners have backed away from a controversial proposal called bitcoin unlimited that would’ve raised the limit on the amount of transaction data can be stored in each block of the bitcoin blockchain. Investors feared that, if support for the proposal passed a certain threshold, but fell short of unanimous adoption, it could split the network into two different coins.

Amith Nirgunarthy, director of marketing and high net-worth partnerships at Bitcoin IRA, was reluctant to read too much into the shift in positioning. “There’s been a lot of good news in the cryptocurrency space as of late,” he said. Earlier this week, Blockchain Capital, a venture fund focused on blockchain initiatives, closed its $10 million initial coin offering—the first of its kind in the U.S.—after just six hours. A blockchain is a decentralized, cryptographically secured ledger that powers digital currencies like bitcoin. The bitcoin BTCUSD, +0.45%  price retreated on Thursday after touching its highest level in three weeks. One coin was recently trading at $1,165.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

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Long Term Bitcoin Analysis

Long Term Bitcoin Analysis

  

Bitcoin (BTC) extended

upside movement against the US Dollar (USD) on Thursday to a weekly high of 1229, rallying the price of BTC/USD to more than 1200, the psychological number, as Japan legalized the cryptocurrency as online payment method while Russia is also mulling over to authorize the cryptocurrency. The technical bias however, remains bearish in near term.

Russia Intercedes into the Crypto World

Russia is mulling over to regulate the digital currency. Russian Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Moiseev told Bloomberg in an interview this week that the authorities hope to recognize bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a legal financial instrument in 2018 in a bid to tackle money laundering.

“The state needs to know who at every moment of time stands on both sides of the financial chain,” Moiseev told Bloomberg. If there’s a transaction, the people who facilitate it should understand from whom they bought and to whom they were selling, just like with bank operations.”

Increasing state regulations around bitcoin could make the cryptocurrency an attractive investment for investors who previously remained cautious due to the high risk and price swings.

Technical Analysis

As of this writing, BTC/USD is being traded around 1170. A 4-Hourly support may be seen around 1135. A major support however still holds around 1060 which is 50% Fibonacci level as demonstrated in the given below 4-hour chart with green color. EMA 200 is pushing upward on a short-term bias after a test at 1135. Trendline in red color is still major and effective as sellers gain momentum. A break and 4-Hourly closing below the 1135 support shall incite renewed selling pressure, validating a move towards 1060, the 50% fibonacci retracement and then a retest of the trend line around 950.

On the upside, bitcoin is expected to face a hurdle near 1230, a key horizontal resistance area ahead of 1300, the psychological number which is also the high of April 2017. The technical bias shall remain bullish as long as the 1135 support area is intact as mentioned before.

What to expect in Long-Term?

In long-term, a pull back will retest the trend line around 950 is very much expected. RSI (25) provides an extra conformation as it is heading lower sharply.

How to Trade BTC/USD in near future?

Selling BTC/USD below the 1135 support level can be a good strategy with stops being placed above 1180. Similarly, buying BTC/USD above 1200 level can be a good idea with stops being placed right below the 1135 support.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Cryptocurrency exchange Kraken adds Dash to Listings

cryptocurrencey exchange kraken adds dash to listings

Dash, the fifth most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap, has announced its partnership with Kraken Digital Asset Exchange – one of the world’s oldest bitcoin exchanges with the largest selection of digital assets and national currencies.

The partnership comes in the wake of a record surge for the cryptocurrency, which experienced a 6x increase in price per ($11 to $72 USD) and a 10x increase in trading volume ($3 million to $30 million USD) across Q1. Dash is now open for trading on the platform with buy and sell pairings including DASH / EUR, DASH / USD, and DASH / BTC. Kraken is expected to offer Dash margin trading in the near future, the release said.

“Kraken is excited to offer Dash on their trading platform and our teams are working closely to ensure clients can begin trading the currency immediately. Kraken is an incredibly well established and well structured organization, and amongst the best in the exchange business. In terms of reputation, they represent the highest standard for client satisfaction. Dash is a project that has implemented very original ideas that resonate well with the market, and as a top tier exchange, Kraken’s mission is to provide clients with access to digital currencies that are in demand and provide value”, Dash VP of Business Development, Daniel Diaz, said.

Following several business partnerships around the world, the implementation of the Sentinel software upgrade and the announcement of revolutionary decentralized payments system called Evolution, Dash has been on record breaking trajectory. Its total market cap skyrocketed from $78 million USD (January 1st) to an all time high of $835 million USD (March 18th), with new international markets unlocked alongside user demand.

“As the leading exchange in the Euro market, Kraken’s global reach helps Dash successfully meet the needs of our users and investors. The entire integration experience was very positive and we have high expectations for the partnership going forward. This is a significant achievement for Dash because our ecosystem needs high quality and trustworthy exchanges like Kraken to thrive, and we know they will play an important role as a fiat gateway”, Diaz continued.

Founded in 2011, Kraken Digital Asset Exchange is based in San Francisco, with offices around the world. Trusted by hundreds of thousands of traders, institutions, and authorities, including Germany’s BaFin regulated Fidor Bank, Kraken is the first exchange to display its market data on the Bloomberg Terminal, pass a cryptographically verifiable proof-of-reserves audit, and one of the first to offer leveraged margin trading. Kraken investors include Blockchain Capital, Digital Currency Group, Hummingbird Ventures, Money Partners Group, and SBI Investment.

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member