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Bitcoin breaks above $6,000, and $100 billion in value for the first time in its history

Bitcoin breaks above $6,000, and $100 billion in value for the first time in its history

Bitcoin breaks above $6,000, and $100 billion in value for the first time in its history

The world’s most prominent digital currency was on track to mark a fresh milestone on Friday, with bitcoin rallying and putting the cyber currency in position to hit a total market value of around $100 billion.

Such a valuation would place the No. 1 cryptographic currency above or on par with blue-chip companies on the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.71% like United Technologies Corp UTX, +1.21% with a market value at $96 billion, American Express Co. AXP, +0.21% at $82 billion, Caterpillar Inc. CAT, +0.45% at $77 billion and Travelers Cos. Inc. TRV, +0.11% at $36 billion.

To be sure, it is questionable to draw value parallels between the asset and more traditional companies, but it highlights the stratospheric rise of bitcoin BTCUSD, +3.00% which didn’t exist a decade ago:

Bitcoin surges on Friday to near a $100 billion valuation.

A single bitcoin also broke above a milestone of $6,000, reaching an intraday high of $6,064.14 Friday afternoon, according to research and data site CoinDesk.com. Bitcoin also boasted a market value of roughly $100.81 billion at its peak on the day, according to data site Coinmarketcap.com. The move comes just as the Dow cleared its own psychologically important level of 23,000 on Wednesday.

The Dow has enjoyed an impressive run-up of 17% year to date, the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.51% has climbed nearly 15% so far this year, while the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.36% has charged up more than 23% thus far in 2017.

However, those paper gains pale in comparison with bitcoin’s run-up. The cyber unit has surged a mind-numbing 520% over the past nine months from $968.23 on Dec. 31, 2016.

Iqbal Gandham, U.K managing director at eToro, a trading platform, said continued buying in bitcoin ahead of a hard fork later in October that will create another version of bitcoin is helping to stimulate investment. So-called Bitcoin Gold, designed to address challenges mining for bitcoin using computers to solve complex problems, will be launched on Oct. 25.

Then on Nov. 18, bitcoin will face a second version of Segregation Witness, or SegWit2x.

Both so-called hard forks are expected to create alternative versions of bitcoin, with owners of the core currency being granted the newer versions on a one-for-one basis.

Diminished expectations that China will ban cryptocurrency exchanges also has helped boost bitcoin’s value. Beijing is expected to require a license to operate bitcoin platforms rather than banning them outright, as had been feared earlier, according to recent reports.

“It’s the flow of positive news clarifying earlier rumors which is moving the price up,” Gandham said.

Jason English, vice president of protocol marketing at Sweetbridge, a blockchain related company, chalked recent moves higher to growing enthusiasm around bitcoin and other cyber units.

“It’s an exciting time to be in cryptocurrencies today,” he said. “More and more individuals and businesses are viewing bitcoin as a store of value that they should be exposed to”

Of course, there are no dearth of critics who see the rapid ascent of digital currencies as a bubble.

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. JPM, +1.43% CEO Jamie Dimon has been one of the more vocal critics of the currency as a store of value.

“If you’re stupid enough to buy it, you’ll pay the price someday,” he said during a panel discussion last week. Meanwhile BlackRock’s head Larry Fink has described bitcoin as “an index to launder money.”

The No. 2 most prominent cryptocurrency, Ether tokens on the Ethereum blockchain, meanwhile, were also higher. One Ether token was recently valued at $307.
 

Author MARK DECAMBRE

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin Price Bounces Back, Crypto Markets Recover to $170 Billion

Bitcoin Price Bounces Back, Crypto Markets Recover to $170 Billion

Bitcoin Price Bounces Back, Crypto Markets Recover to $170 Billion

The crypto markets bounced back on Thursday following a significant contraction the previous day. The bitcoin price led the charge, rising more than 6% to put the $5,700 barrier within its sights, while the ethereum price ticked up 3% to $309. Unfortunately, the recovery was not comprehensive, and some cryptocurrencies — including ripple — continued to decline.


Chart from CoinMarketCap

The downturn forced the total cryptocurrency market cap as far down as $156.5 million, which represented a one-week low. However, the markets began to recover Wednesday afternoon and quickly rose above $160 billion. They continued to climb leading into Thursday morning and have since risen to a present value of $169.7 billion.

Chart from CoinMarketCap

Bitcoin Price Bounces Back

Wednesday’s bitcoin price decline caught many investors by surprise, and it was difficult to ascertain what caused it, other than that traders were taking profits following last week’s rally. The pullback put severe downward pressure on the bitcoin price, which fell as low as $5,151. However, bitcoin held firm at this level, and support gradually began to return, enabling the flagship cryptocurrency to mount a successful recovery. Ultimately, the bitcoin price posted a single-day return of 6%, bringing it to a present value of $5,679, which translates into a $94.5 billion market cap.

Bitcoin Price Chart from CoinMarketCap

Ethereum Price Holds Above $300

The ethereum price experienced a single-day recovery as well, although its performance was not quite as impressive as that of bitcoin. After dipping as low as $291, the ethereum price managed to fight its way back across the $300 threshold. Ethereum is currently trading at $309, which represents a 24-hour recovery of about 3%. Ethereum now has a market cap of $29.4 billion.

Ethereum Price Chart from CoinMarketCap

Altcoins Eye Generally Recovery

Altcoins lost ground to bitcoin on Thursday, which saw its dominant market share rise about 1% to 55.7%. However, the majority of altcoins experienced recoveries against the value of USD, adding about $2 billion to their combined market cap.

Altcoin Price Chart from CoinMarketCap

But there were some significant outliers. In fact, three of the top 10 cryptocurrencies posted negative movement for the day, and the worst performance belonged to ripple. XRP holders had expected Ripple to make a major announcement during “Swell”, a conference hosted by the fintech startup. However, nothing materialized — at least not of the caliber they were expecting — causing the ripple price to add to its losses from yesterday. At present, the ripple price is $0.212, which represents a 24-hour decline of 7%.

Ripple Price Chart from CoinMarketCap

Fourth-ranked bitcoin cash also posted a minor decline, causing it to tick down to about $334. Several major bitcoin cash proponents — including Roger Ver and Calvin Ayre — intend to start a campaign to assert that “bitcoin cash is bitcoin”, so it will be interesting to see if this has any lasting effects on the trajectory of BCH.

Litecoin Price Chart from CoinMarketCap

The litecoin price, on the other hand, rose by 8%. This advance pushed it back over the $60 threshold, and litecoin is currently priced at $61. This translates into a market cap of $3.2 billion.

Dash added 3%, but it was unable to climb past the $300 mark, while NEM surged by just under 10%. NEO declined 3% after weathering the Wednesday downturn quite respectably, and bitconnect rose by 8% to $201. Monero rounds out the top 10 with a 1% increase, which was just enough to inch above the $90 barrier.

Author: Josiah Wilmoth on 19/10/2017

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Why Silicon Valley is going gaga for Bitcoin

Why Silicon Valley is going gaga for Bitcoin

Why Silicon Valley is going gaga for Bitcoin

Cryptocurrencies are on a historic tear right now. And Silicon Valley’s infatuation with the industry explains a lot about itself.

Should I buy bitcoin? As a technology reporter, the questions I receive from random people at birthday parties, say, or seatmates on a plane, are usually emblematic of what is going on in the digital world. (And, increasingly, the real one, too, for that matter.) Not too long ago, the predominant question was Should I buy the new iPhone? Then it became Do I need to be on Twitter? or Do I need to be on Facebook? or Do I need to be on Snapchat? (That question has since come full circle to Should I quit Twitter and Facebook?) These days, the question I hear the most—well, besides whether Twitter should ban Trump—is Should I buy bitcoin?

I usually respond with the story of Laszlo Hanyecz. If you’ve come within 500 feet of bitcoin, or any other cryptocurrency, over the past few years, the name alone will make you cringe. Back in 2010, when the currency was in its infancy, Hanyecz went “mining” for bitcoins for a few months and collected 10,000 of them; he subsequently traded them, in what would be the first cryptocurrency transaction in history, to a guy who bought him two Papa John’s pizzas with a couple sides of that tasty, buttery garlic sauce. Back then, Hanyecz’s bitcoins had no value, and the $30 value of two pies and an accoutrement made his individual bitcoin units worth 0.003 cents apiece. Today, at their current market valuation, bitcoin units are worth around $5,800 each, which means Hanyecz’s 10,000 bitcoins would be worth around $58 million. “It wasn’t like bitcoins had any value back then, so the idea of trading them for a pizza was incredibly cool,” Hanyecz told me in 2013, when bitcoin was already valued at $1,242 each. “No one knew it was going to get so big.”

For a lot of people on the periphery of this technology, the extraordinary rise in bitcoin’s value has become cause for alarm. The Web is littered with news articles, blog posts, and white papers warning that bitcoin and its sibling currencies are worth nothing, and the rise and fall of the currencies’ worth, which can fluctuate by billions of dollars a minute, certainly backs that up. But while Jamie Dimon and other bankers might scoff at these digital currencies, Silicon Valley is extremely bullish. There’s a reason, too: if Dimon had invested in bitcoin when he first called it a joke, in 2015, he would have received a tenfold return on his investment.

There are a number of reasons why bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are doing so well right now. One of the more plausible scenarios was outlined this week in a very clever post written by Adam Ludwin, an investor and co-founder of Chain.com, a bitcoin developer platform, which argues that bitcoin is an entirely new asset class, similar to equities and bonds, and that “bitcoin is capitalism, distilled.” The “capitalism” part of the sentence helps explain why some in Silicon Valley are so specifically exuberant about it right now. “In the short-run, there will be extreme volatility as FOMO competes with FUD, confusion competes with understanding, and greed competes with fear (on both the buyer side and the issuer side),” Ludwin wrote. “Most people buying into crypto assets have checked their judgement at the door.”

This gets someone like me a bit nervous about what cryptocurrencies could end up doing to society in the long run. Silicon Valley culture is largely fueled by people who love to decimate industries that don’t work, often without any thought of how the disruption could lead to other negative results happening in society (see the recent social-media debacle around the election ). In typical Valley fantasy, people are seeing only the positive potential with bitcoin, not the potentially ugly outcomes when humans molest it for their own interests.

One of the many factors currently fueling the ascent of bitcoin is the rise of initial coin offerings, or I.C.O.s, where some lucky investors are reaping astounding returns. You can think of these like a traditional initial public offering, or I.P.O., but without the layers upon layers of regulation and government bureaucracy that come with a company going public. With an I.C.O., a start-up raises money for a new venture by selling “coins” that are very similar to shares of a public company. The coins then rise and fall as the company’s value oscillates. In 2014, when the founding of a new cryptocurrency called Ethereum was announced, it raised $18 million by selling a new digital coin called “Ether” for 40 cents per coin. Today, Ethereum has a market cap of around $30 billion. So if you had spent $100 on Ether during the I.C.O., you would have made $74,900 in profit. As Nathaniel Popper detailed in The New York Times earlier this summer, I.C.O.s have been generating billions of dollars in returns for some—and a lot of scams, too.

The lack of regulation in the cryptocurrency world, after all, means that there is a lot of fraud, extreme volatility, and coin values can jump up or down in mere seconds. Someone I recently spoke with who works with, and monitors, the crypto I.C.O. markets pointed out that some of these I.C.O.s feel awfully similar to the Dot Com public offerings of the late 90s, where the public was buying into nothing and ended up with exactly that when the entire market came crashing down and trillions of dollars were wiped off the stock market. In China, I.C.O.s became so troubling that they were banned earlier this year. In September, the People’s Bank of China issued a blunt statement saying that this practice was “illegal and disruptive to economic and financial stability.” I.C.O.s in China were occurring at an astounding rate, with one report claiming that more than $750 million was raised in I.C.O.s in July and August alone. A lot of people think the ban by China is temporary, slowing the dizzying speed of these offerings.

As a result of all the movement in the cryptocurrency market over the past couple of years, there are a lot of options out there for people who want to try their hand in crypto-investing. There’s bitcoin, the first and most well known of all the currencies, which currently oscillates in value at around $5,000 a coin. I’ve heard predictions all over the map, from bitcoins one day being worth as much as $500,000 each to units being worth absolutely nothing if a better coin comes along. (My personal prediction is that they will continue to rise for at least the next couple of years.) Ether had remained relatively flat until earlier this year when it spiked in value to over $350 apiece. (It’s since fallen to $300 each.) The current coin du jour is called Litecoin, which is getting a lot of attention because it’s still priced relatively low, at around $55 each, and is expected to rise considerably over the next year or so on account of new features that will be added to enable more privacy options. Then there are a slew of other coins to explore, including Monero, which is an open-source currency that was developed in April 2014, but which spiked this year after the illegal drug market AlphaBay was taken down. Monero, unlike other currencies, is truly anonymous, making it the perfect currency with which to buy and sell drugs, guns, and other illegal contraband on the Dark Web. If you look at the World Coin Index Web site, you can see a long list of other coins and their values over time, including Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Qtum, NEO, Nav Coin, NEM, and a number of other coins.

For Silicon Valley, betting on one of these early can mean profiting beyond all imagination, exceeding even the famed 1,000x start-up returns from companies like Facebook and Uber. Earlier this summer, I interviewed Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, the twins who co-founded The Facebook with Mark Zuckerberg, and they are now obsessively investing in cryptocurrencies. In a settlement with Facebook, the two brothers were awarded $60 million, but to hear them talk about it, it appears their investments in bitcoin and other currencies are going to reap a far bigger return over time. I’ve spoken with countless other people about the current state of bitcoin and cryptocurrency, and I’ve heard two truths that seems consistent. No one—and I mean no one—knows exactly which digital currency will be successful in the future. It could be bitcoin, it could be Litecoin, it could be something that hasn’t even been created yet. But, the other resounding feeling is that these currencies are here to stay in one form or another and there is nothing anyone can do to stop them. Which brings me back to that question that I’m often asked these days: “should I buy bitcoin?”

There’s an old saying in real estate that “you shouldn’t wait to buy, but rather you should buy and then wait.” That’s the way I feel about these cryptocurrencies. If you’re looking for a quick and dramatic financial boost, realize that you could probably get similar odds by buying a plane ticket to Las Vegas, walking into the first casino you see, and putting all your money on black or red. But, if you’re willing to wait it out, there’s a chance that your investment in a cryptocurrency could make for an impressive return over time. Just be prepared to go it the long haul. Or at least until the price spikes tomorrow.

Author Nick Bilton – special correspondent for Vanity Fair.

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin’s price bubble will burst under government pressure

Bitcoin's price bubble will burst under government pressure

Bitcoin's price bubble will burst under government pressure

Is the cryptocurrency bitcoin the biggest bubble in the world today, or a great investment bet on the cutting edge of new-age financial technology? My best guess is that in the long run, the technology will thrive, but that the price of bitcoin will collapse.

If you haven’t been following the bitcoin story, its price is up 600% over the past 12 months, and 1,600% in the past 24 months. At over $4,200 (as of 5 October), a single unit of the virtual currency is now worth more than three times an ounce of gold. Some bitcoin evangelists see it going far higher in the next few years.

What happens from here will depend a lot on how governments react. Will they tolerate anonymous payment systems that facilitate tax evasion and crime? Will they create digital currencies of their own? Another key question is how successfully bitcoin’s numerous “alt-coin” competitors can penetrate the market.
 

Warnings grow louder over cryptocurrency as valuations soar

In principle, it is supremely easy to clone or improve on bitcoin’s technology. What is not so easy is to duplicate bitcoin’s established lead in credibility and the large ecosystem of applications that have built up around it.

For now, the regulatory environment remains a free-for-all. China’s government, concerned about the use of bitcoin in capital flight and tax evasion, has recently banned bitcoin exchanges. Japan, on the other hand, has enshrined bitcoin as legal tender, in an apparent bid to become the global centre of fintech.

Bitcoin's price bubble will burst under government pressure

The United States is taking tentative steps to follow Japan in regulating fintech, though the endgame is far from clear. Importantly, bitcoin does not need to win every battle to justify a sky-high price. Japan, the world’s third largest economy, has an extraordinarily high currency-to-income ratio (roughly 20%), so bitcoin’s success there is a major triumph.

In Silicon Valley, drooling executives are both investing in bitcoin and pouring money into competitors. After bitcoin, the most important is Ethereum. The sweeping, Amazon-like ambition of Ethereum is to allow its users to employ the same general technology to negotiate and write “smart contracts” for just about anything.

As of early October, Ethereum’s market capitalisation stood at $28bn, versus $72bn for bitcoin. Ripple, a platform championed by the banking sector to slash transaction costs for interbank and overseas transfers, is a distant third at $9bn. Behind the top three are dozens of fledgling competitors.

Most experts agree that the ingenious technology behind virtual currencies may have broad applications for cybersecurity, which currently poses one of the biggest challenges to the stability of the global financial system. For many developers, the goal of achieving a cheaper, more secure payments mechanism has supplanted bitcoin’s ambition of replacing dollars.

But it is folly to think that bitcoin will ever be allowed to supplant central-bank-issued money. It is one thing for governments to allow small anonymous transactions with virtual currencies; indeed, this would be desirable. But it is an entirely different matter for governments to allow large-scale anonymous payments, which would make it extremely difficult to collect taxes or counter criminal activity. Of course, as I note in my recent book on past, present, and future currencies, governments that issue large-denomination bills also risk aiding tax evasion and crime. But cash at least has bulk, unlike virtual currency.

It will be interesting to see how the Japanese experiment evolves. The government has indicated that it will force bitcoin exchanges to be on the lookout for criminal activity and to collect information on deposit holders. Still, one can be sure that global tax evaders will seek ways to acquire bitcoin anonymously abroad and then launder their money through Japanese accounts. Carrying paper currency in and out of a country is a major cost for tax evaders and criminals; by embracing virtual currencies, Japan risks becoming a Switzerland-like tax haven – with the bank secrecy laws baked into the technology.

Were bitcoin stripped of its near-anonymity, it would be hard to justify its current price. Perhaps bitcoin speculators are betting that there will always be a consortium of rogue states allowing anonymous bitcoin usage, or even state actors such as North Korea that will exploit it.

Would the price of bitcoin drop to zero if governments could perfectly observe transactions? Perhaps not. Even though bitcoin transactions require an exorbitant amount of electricity, with some improvements, bitcoin might still beat the 2% fees the big banks charge on credit and debit cards.

Finally, it is hard to see what would stop central banks from creating their own digital currencies and using regulation to tilt the playing field until they win. The long history of currency tells us that what the private sector innovates, the state eventually regulates and appropriates. I have no idea where bitcoin’s price will go over the next couple years, but there is no reason to expect virtual currency to avoid a similar fate.
 

Author: Kenneth Rogoff

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin Price is Hitting Above $4,500 Again

Bitcoin Price is Hitting Above $4,500 Again

Bitcoin Price is Hitting Above $4,500 Again

Bitcoin price surpassed the $4,500 mark Sunday, reaching $4,614.91 Sunday, posting a market capitalization of $76.662 billion. Bitcoin posted close to a 5% gain in the last 24 hours, during which most cryptocurrencies posted losses.

Ripple and Litecoin were the only other two of the top 10 cryptocurrencies to gain in the period, posting 15.6% and 2.02% gains, respectively. BitConnect, the number 12 crypto with a market cap just over $1 billion, was the only other crypto with more than $1 billion in market capitalization to post a gain, grabbing 4.36%.

Bitcoin commanded more than half of all cryptocurrency market valuation, accounting for 50.03% of all market value. Ethereum accounted for 19.39%, the only other crypto to rank in double digits. Bitcoin had also surpassed the 50% mark earlier in the week.

Bitcoin Stabilizes Crypto Markets

In the past week, the bitcoin price provided the markets with a stabilizing force. Despite falling prey to the mid-week downtrend, the bitcoin price ended the week at $4,335, which then represented a week-over-week gain of about one-half of one percent.

Tuur Demeester, a prominent bitcoin investor, analyst, and editor in chief at Adamant Research, recently predicted the bitcoin price would surpass the $5,000 mark if support towards SegWit2x declines in the next few days. Uncertainty around SegWit2x has held back the momentum of bitcoin and its short-term rally. Several business have pulled out from the SegWit2x NYA agreement and the plan of the Digital Currency Group-led consortium of companies to carry out a hard fork in November.

Since early September, bitcoin’s price has struggled to recover beyond $4,500 due to uncertainty surrounding the Chinese cryptocurrency exchange market and SegWit2x. Analysts have started to demonstrate optimism towards the possibility of the Chinese government resuming cryptocurrency trading.
 

Hyperinflationary Period Over?

Chris Burniske, a partner at cryptocurrency-focused venture capital firm Placeholder and former cryptocurrency investment lead at ARK Investment, recently revealed that 80 percent of the total supply of bitcoin is now outstanding and that its hyperinflationary period is behind it.

Because there will only be 21 million bitcoins and no additional bitcoin can be created after the supply achieves its cap, only a limited number of investors would be able to hold one full bitcoin.

Bitcoin’s deflationary supply, however, is not an issue for investors and merchants that adopt bitcoin as a digital currency because it is divisible. Currently, many bitcoin wallets and merchants use “satoshi” as a unit, with one satoshi representing 0.00000001 bitcoin.

Investors Flock To Bitcoin

Currently, many investors and traders have invested in bitcoin as a safe haven asset and a long-term investment. But, as bitcoin evolves as a technology and a robust financial network, it will soon compete with reserve currencies, existing banking systems, and traditional assets such as gold.

For the long-term growth of bitcoin’s market cap and price, its deflationary nature will be a vital factor to sustain bitcoin’s upward momentum and demand for bitcoin from the global market.

Several analysts, including RT’s Max Keiser, Harvard academic Dennis Porto, and Saxo Bank senior analyst Kay Van-Petersen, have predicted bitcoin price surpassing $100,000 within the next 10 years.

 

Author: Lester Coleman on 09/10/2017

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Will the Disinflation of Bitcoin Lead to Long-Term Price Surge?

Will the Disinflation of Bitcoin Lead to Long-Term Price Surge

Will the Disinflation of Bitcoin Lead to Long-Term Price Surge?

Chris Burniske, a parter at cryptocurrency-focused venture capital firm Placeholder and former cryptocurrency investment lead at ARKInvestment, revealed that 80 percent of the total supply of bitcoin is now outstanding and that its hyperinflationary period is behind it.

Will the Disinflation of Bitcoin Lead to Long-Term Price Surge

Dissimilar to most currencies and assets, bitcoin is a deflationary currency because of its unique monetary policy. Since its introduction in 2009, bitcoin was structured specifically to operate as a robust and secure store of value, and as an alternative to existing banking systems, financial networks, and currencies.

Two distinct characteristics of bitcoin which sets it apart from bank-issued or operated currencies are its decentralized nature and fixed supply. Bitcoin’s supply is capped at 21 million and consequently, it is not possible for more than 21 million bitcoin to exist.

Disinflation and Decreasing Supply of Bitcoin

Because there will only be 21 million bitcoins and no additional bitcoin can be created after the supply achieves its cap, only a limited number of investors would be able to hold one full bitcoin.

Chris Burniske, a parter at cryptocurrency-focused venture capital firm Placeholder and former cryptocurrency investment lead at ARKInvestment, revealed that 80 percent of the total supply of bitcoin is now outstanding and that its hyperinflationary period is behind it.

bitcoinDissimilar to most currencies and assets, bitcoin is a deflationary currency because of its unique monetary policy. Since its introduction in 2009, bitcoin was structured specifically to operate as a robust and secure store of value, and as an alternative to existing banking systems, financial networks, and currencies.

Two distinct characteristics of bitcoin which sets it apart from bank-issued or operated currencies are its decentralized nature and fixed supply. Bitcoin’s supply is capped at 21 million and consequently, it is not possible for more than 21 million bitcoin to exist.

Disinflation and Decreasing Supply of Bitcoin

Because there will only be 21 million bitcoins and no additional bitcoin can be created after the supply achieves its cap, only a limited number of investors would be able to hold one full bitcoin.

But, bitcoin’s deflationary supply is not an issue for investors and merchants that adopt bitcoin as a digital currency because it is divisible. Currently, many bitcoin wallets and merchants use “satoshi” as a unit, with one satoshi representing 0.00000001 bitcoin.

At the Texas Bitcoin Conference, economist Robert Murphy from the Austrian School of Economics, refuted the criticism of conventional economists that previously condemned the monetary supply of bitcoin. Murphy stated:

“Part of where this fear of deflation comes from is, historically, it’s associated with very bad economies. So, during the Great Depression of the 30s, there were falling prices. And there are other periods where prices fell when things were bad, but I would argue that the causality was the other way around. Partly what was going on there was people were concerned because the economy was so terrible. And, so what do you do when you’re afraid? You don’t want to invest in companies and things like that. You rush to liquidity. You rush to hard money. That’s why you often see in periods of panic people will rush to the money, so you see prices of all other things quoted in money fall. So, it’s not that the falling prices caused the bad economy. It’s the other way around.”

The deflationary monetary policy of bitcoin will only increase the demand for bitcoin in the long-term. As noted by Burniske, already 80 percent of bitcoin’s supply is outstanding and the creation of bitcoin will be limited as years pass, upon the “halving” of miner reward.
 

If Bitcoin’s Current Rate of Growth is Sustained, its Value Will Increase Drastically

Several analysts including RT’s Max Keiser, Harvard academic Dennis Porto, and Saxo Bank senior analyst Kay Van-Petersen have provided a strong case of the bitcoin price surpassing $100,000 within the next ten years. In order for bitcoin to achieve $100,000 in value, its market cap would need to increase beyond $2.1 trillion.

Currently, many investors and traders have invested in bitcoin as a safe haven asset and a long-term investment. But, as bitcoin evolves as a technology and a robust financial network, it will soon compete with reserve currencies, existing banking systems, and traditional assets such as gold.

For the long-term growth of bitcoin’s market cap and price, its deflationary nature will be a vital factor to sustain bitcoin’s upward momentum and demand for bitcoin from the global market.
 

Author: Joseph Young on 07/10/2017

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Calm Before the Fork – Segwit2x Goes Silent as Bitcoin Split Looms

Calm Before the Fork - Segwit2x Goes Silent as Bitcoin Split Looms

Calm Before the Fork – Segwit2x Goes Silent as Bitcoin Split Looms

"It's sort of like the quiet tension before a battle."

That's how Jean-Pierre Rupp, a developer at bitcoin wallet provider Blockchain, described the current state of Segwit2x development. With the code labeled "production ready," and the work of contributors like Rupp nearly complete, the main step left is the activation of the code, scheduled for late November.

That's when the next stage of bitcoin's scaling debate, as they say, will come to a head.

First proposed at a private meeting of industry players in May, Segwit2x was intended to forge a compromise in bitcoin's long-raging scaling debate. Still, it has attracted opposition, primarily for its approach to upgrading the bitcoin software. Chief among concerns is its use of a hard fork to increase the block size, a contentious mechanism due to the fact it could result in the creation of two competing bitcoin assets, or perhaps a single one that no longer interests a certain portion of users.

While Segwit2x's proponents and detractors permeate social media channels, there's been comparatively few statements from the group working on the software.

To that point, CoinDesk has observed little activity on the Segwit2x mailing list and GitHub (the level of code changes pales in comparison to other active cryptocurrency projects, even smaller ones such as MimbleWimble or btcd).

But this is by design, according to project developers, who say if no problems are detected, the only thing left to do is wait for the big day.

Rupp told CoinDesk:

"Nothing is really being done at the moment until the fork date. As the most recent document that we published states, we are in a quiet period. We aren't discussing much about the direction of development afterwards, nor being too active on the technical front until the fork happens in November."

Small stirrings

While it's primarily a waiting game now, that's not to say some testing isn't being done to make sure everything will go smoothly.

While there's no additional feature development going on, according to Segwit2x project lead and BitGo co-founder and CEO, Mike Belshe, tests are ongoing to verify the software's compatibility with existing bitcoin libraries and applications.

Rupp provided evidence of this, saying he's reviewed the portion of the code set to activate the hard fork. In addition, he said he's been running a "faucet" – one that spills out test coins so users can see what making transactions will be like on a network upgraded to Segwit2x's rule set.

Rupp has given away more than 3,500 coins which have been used to make about 5,000 transactions on the testnet. Still, it's unclear how many and which developers are using the faucet for testing, especially since some Segwit2x developer proponents have since stepped back from the project.

OpenBazaar lead developer Chris Pacia said he's been "a little out of the loop" recently. And RSK Labs developer Sergio Demian Lerner, despite being the author of the proposal that inspired Segwit2x, simply stated in an email: "I'm not involved in Segwit2x now."

Other known participants declined to comment or did not respond to requests for comment.

Partisan lines

Still, there may be good reasons for the lack of Segwit2x developer and company dialogue. In bitcoin, the proposal has become a black-or-white issue, and there may be little that can be done to change the minds of those on either side.

As the bitcoin blockchain has grown, there are some who want to keep transaction fees low to attract consumers (or businesses seeking to offer services to those consumers), and those who want to keep them high (so the costs of storing a full record of all transactions doesn't become prohibitive).

When speaking to developers, there remains staunch support along partisan lines.

John Heathco, a developer who recently contributed to Segwit2x, said he believes there's still "a lot of community support" for increasing the block size parameter as a way to improve network capacity.

"The majority of individuals just want to be able to use bitcoin without paying ridiculously high fees," he argued.

Historical data from Statoshi.info shows that fees have indeed grown over time, but only gradually over the last couple of years. (In October 2015, the average transaction fee was 55 satoshis per byte, though it has been as high as 410 satoshis per byte earlier this year, before dropping again to 120 satoshis per byte).

Others believe Segregated Witness (SegWit), a code change that went live on the network in August, will eventually reduce fees (and provide other suitable options of allowing low-cost transactions).

Already, companies such as BitGo and GreenAddress, among the earliest wallet providers to adopt SegWit transactions, report fees are now about half the cost of normal transactions.
 

Measuring sentiment

Still, users and companies, it seems, are slow to migrate.

Though 144 companies claim they will eventually update to support SegWit, at press time, the percentage of transactions using SegWit is growing slowly, and still in the single digits. Whether because they are uninterested in adoption or unwilling to, it seems, Segwit2x proponents are keen to use the statistic to argue that SegWit doesn't go far enough.

Yet another fault line is just whose opinion matters in the debate, with developers often echoing the idea that "users" and the "community" have already rejected the proposal.

"Most people, as far as I know, don’t intend to follow it," said developer James Hilliard, a notable critic of the Segwit2x agreement.

However, the comments mostly point to the lack of resources that can measure the issue, with informal Twitter polls often serving as "evidence" of broader sentiment.

As for the actual parties to the agreement, while a few signatories have backed out, most major miners and 56 companies claim to support the proposal. Still, there is disagreement over whether the opinion of miners and startups should dictate course.

Though less public now about their plans, it seems the companies and developers behind the effort aren't inclined to weigh in either. Most, it seems, are content to use the silence to their advantage as a way to avoid further backlash, or at least enjoy a moment of calm ahead of what could be a fierce debate ahead.

Oct 6, 2017 at 08:01 UTC by Alyssa Hertig

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein Latest Exec to Flirt with Bitcoin

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein Latest Exec to Flirt with Bitcoin

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein Latest Exec to Flirt with Bitcoin

Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs, cozies up to bitcoin, albeit hesitantly. He’s following a global corporate trend. As its price rises, and bitcoin’s resiliency to regulation rumors and clampdown steady, it’s not hard to imagine more converts on the way.

 

Consigliere to the Elite

The man’s words literally move markets. In a single Tweet, he can set the financial world aflutter. To wit:

Goldman Sachs CEO, Lloyd Blankfein, consigliere to presidents, prime ministers, central bankers, understands the power of his unique platform, voice.

As head of a century-and-a-half old financial institution, Mr. Blankfein has the ear of everyone who matters. Even the United States Treasury consults him prior to finalizing policy.

Mr. Blankfein joined Twitter only this year, and has kept Tweeting to about two dozen posts in less than six months. This one, however, received serious media attention, especially coming as it has after conjecture swirled Goldman Sachs would consider its own bitcoin play within the mainstream market structure.

Its second line grabs at bitcoin enthusiasts.

The move to paper money, cash, was indeed a radical solution to a very common daily economic problem. Gold was an ideal form of currency, but its limitation in large amounts included lugging it around.

Issuing redeemable notes, though they came with their own set of problems, easily stored and folded, allowed for smoother public and private transactions.

Depending on your favorite anthropologist, paper money has been around for something on the order of 1,400 years.

Mr. Blankfein knows all this.

What seems like a passing, throw-away line in a Tweet is, some have speculated, a sly acknowledgment bitcoin might replace altogether fiat paper, or at least compete, over the next millennia and a half.

 

Bizarre Presage

Momentous as Mr. Blankfein’s Tweet seems, it wouldn’t be particularly newsworthy by itself.

Just days ago, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, spoke to the Bank of England (BOE).

“For now,” Director Lagarde warned, “virtual currencies such as Bitcoin pose little or no challenge to the existing order of fiat currencies and central banks” [emphasis Ms. Lagarde’s].

Import rests in her phrase, “for now,” as the remainder of her speech to gathered European financial professionals suggests.

Ms. Lagarde echoed consistent BOE working papers and pronouncements on cryptocurrencies, commonly lumped-together in European parlance as ‘virtual currencies.’

As far back as the third quarter of 2014, Robleh Ali of BOE’s Financial Market Infrastructure Directorate, produced an official assessment of virtual currencies such as bitcoin.

“Virtual currencies are in a different category,” Ms. Lagarde said, “because they provide their own unit of account and payment systems. These systems allow for peer-to-peer transactions without central clearinghouses, without central banks.”

BOE concluded, “while they are interesting, they do not currently pose a material risk to monetary or financial stability in the United Kingdom. We continue to monitor developments in this area.”

That BOE statement remains fully intact as of this writing.

But then, during her talk, Ms. Lagarde bizarrely presaged Mr. Blankfein’s Tweet. She seemed to be moving away from both BOE’s and her earlier caveat.

Ms. Lagarde, former French Prime Minister François Fillon’s Minister of Finance, was lucid enough to distinguish virtual currencies from what most of the world already experiences.

“To be clear, this is not about digital payments in existing currencies—through Paypal and other ‘e-money’ providers such as Alipay in China, or M-Pesa in Kenya,” she clarified.

IMF is the United Nation’s chartered legacy of economists, such as John Maynard Keynes, to provide a global Special Drawing Rights (SDR) fund for fiscal emergencies. The SDR hovers around 700 billion USD. Nearly 200 countries participate.

“Virtual currencies are in a different category,” Ms. Lagarde said, “because they provide their own unit of account and payment systems. These systems allow for peer-to-peer transactions without central clearinghouses, without central banks.”

Another way to put that is, bitcoin is cash for the digital age

.

Even Haters are Coming Around

While CEOs are typically non-committal in their remarks, leaving analysts to comb through for morsels of news, Fidelity Investments CEO Abigail Johnson announced, at the Consensus Conference over the summer, she is “a believer” in bitcoin.

Corporate executives in 2017 are indeed beginning to sound a little like religious converts.

“I’m one of the few standing before you,” Ms. Johnson witnessed to congregants, “from a large financial services company that has not given up on digital currencies. We set up a small Bitcoin and Ethereum mining operation … that miraculously now is actually making a lot of money.”

Ms. Johnson is admittedly rare in this regard.

This year’s bitcoin three hundred percent price increase has changed a growing number of CEOs’ hearts. They’re finding religion, as it were.

James Gorman, CEO of Morgan Stanley, once sounded befuddled by bitcoin.

“I’m not sure I understand it,” Mr. Gorman told Fox Business, “I mean, it is totally surreal. I mean, who’s the founder, this guy in LA? What’s going on with Mt. Gox?”

That was, of course, back in 2014 when an equally mystified Asian American man was mistakenly pinned for Satoshi Nakamoto, and Mt. Gox was insolvent.

Smash-cut to present day.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal’s financial editor Dennis Berman, Mr. Gorman said three years-on he still doesn’t own any bitcoin.

However, he’s “talked to a lot of people who have. It’s obviously highly speculative, but it’s not something that’s inherently bad.”

Mr. Gorman continued, bitcoin is “certainly more than just a fad.”

 

Shadow Bank Throws Shade

If Mr. Blankfein, the IMF, Fidelity Investments, and Morgan Stanley have inched toward bitcoin and, in come cases, fully lauded its potential, at least one holdout, thought never to so much as mention cryptocurrencies, might be softening.

Sort of. Maybe.

The globe’s shadow bank, BlackRock, Inc., manages well-over five trillion USD, yes, trillion, in assets.

CEO Larry Fink gave a luke-warm or cold embrace of cryptocurrencies generally, depending on how a person hears his answers, to Bloomberg Markets.

“I am a big believer in the potential of what a, … a cryptocurrency can do,” Mr. Fink said as he struggled to find the correct phrasing. “You see huge opportunities in it.”

Bloomberg‘s running ticker screamed Mr. Fink’s endorsement.

And then …

“What I think about most of these cryptocurrencies, it just identifies how much money laundering there is being done in the world, how much people are trying to move currencies from one place to another,” Mr. Fink stressed worriedly.

“I actually believe you’re seeing a demand for [bitcoin],” he continued, but a created world digital currency might pose innumerable security risks, Mr. Fink surmised.

When asked if his clients are asking for a bitcoin/cryptocurrency asset class or product, Mr. Fink answered demonstrably, “No.” Beyond venture capital and speculation, BlackRock wasn’t hearing much from their customers on bitcoin.

“I hate the word ‘crypto,'” he said, preferring the phrase “digitized currency.”
 

Images courtesy of Huffington Post, Charlie Rose, Twitter, Wall Street Journal, YouTube. Sterlin Luxan contributed to this piece.

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Analysis of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin

Analysis of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin

Analysis of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin

* All the market data is provided by the HitBTC exchange.

 

The cryptocurrency universe is showing nervousness at the current levels, having recovered anywhere between 50% to 78% of the fall. After having sucked in the eager bulls at lower levels, is a retest of the lows on the cards?

What should be the future plan of action? To hold out or sell now? Let’s uncover the possibilities

Bitcoin

In our previous analysis, we had recommended booking partial profits at about $4459 levels. We are not yet bearish on bitcoin, but we believe that the pullback has reached a significant resistance zone of $4546 to $4680.

So, how far can the digital currency fall?

Bitcoin has significant support from the 20-day exponential moving average (EMA), the 50-day simple moving average (SMA) and the trendline in the zone of $4121 to $4200.

Therefore, a bounce from these levels is likely.

We may see an intraday dip below the trendline, but the closing is likely to be above it. Aggressive traders can initiate long trades close to $4150, if there are clear signs of support kicking in. Please watch for an hour to establish a strong support and then buy. If the cryptocurrency continues to fall, no trade should be taken.

This is a risky trade, therefore, we recommend a smaller position size.

In order to protect our investment, a stop loss of about $3950 can be kept. The target objective of this trade is $4480 and higher.

Ether

While bitcoin is yet to breakdown of the trendline, its junior partner, ethereum has already done so, albeit on an intraday basis. Until the digital currency breaks and closes below the trendline, we will not consider it a valid breakdown.

Ethereum has significant support at the $280 levels, where we expect some buying to emerge.

Nevertheless, we believe that the digital currency is stuck in a tight range of $280 to $310. This range is unlikely to hold out for long. Soon, price will either breakout or breakdown of it. Therefore, we recommend waiting until the digital currency reaches $317, which is a clear indication of demand because if the cryptocurrency breaks down of $280, it can plunge to $240 levels.

We are not recommending a trade within the range, as price is below both the moving averages, which is a bearish sign.

litecoin

Litecoin has formed a clear range of $44 on the lower end and $57.7 on the upper end. The best way to trade within a range is to buy at the bottom and sell at the top.

Currently, the cryptocurrency is trying to hold the psychological level of $50. If this level beaks, a fall to $44 is likely, where the traders can initiate long positions with a SL at $40. However, please don’t buy in a falling market. Wait for prices to bounce off the lows before buying around $44 to $46 levels.

On the other hand, if litecoin finds support at $50 and rallies above $58, we recommend a long position with the stop loss just below $50. A breakout of the range has a minimum target objective of $71.

Guest Writer on 05/10/2017

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin: $6,000 and Beyond?

Bitcoin: $6,000 and Beyond?

Bitcoin: $6,000 and Beyond?

Bitcoin will quickly rise to $6,000 and you’re all foolish for thinking otherwise. At least, that’s what industry experts are saying. Of course, they added one important caveat: expect volatility to continue.

Bullish on Bitcoin

The cryptocurrency community has fallen on hard times as of late, but that hasn’t stopped the industry’s brightest minds from maintaining their bullish bets on BTC. The next major target that experts are eyeing is $6,000, which is a nearly 40% increase from current levels. According to analysts quoted by CNBC, $6,000 could become reality by year’s end.

The BTC/USD exchange rate peaked above $5,000 earlier this summer before a series of market events triggered a sharp correction. Chief among them was China’s decision to ban initial coin offerings (ICOs) and close down bitcoin exchanges.

Bitcoin was trading around $4,300 early Wednesday, according to Bitstamp. A price action analysis of the BTC/USD reveals that the digital currency is poised for a bullish breakout following a solid weekend of trading.

At present values, the BTC market is worth roughly $71.6 billion, easily tops among global cryptocurrencies. Ethereum is a distant second at $299.00 a pop and $28.4 billion in capitalization.

Bitcoin Cash (BCH), which “forked” from the original BTC in August, is trading at $403.00. That’s enough for fourth place on the global cryptocurrency value chart. With a cap of around $6.7 billion, BCH is ten times smaller than bitcoin.

BlackRock Sees Potential in Cryptocurrency

The CEO of the world’s biggest hedge fund sees “huge opportunities” for cryptocurrency. In a recent interview with Bloomberg, BlackRock head Larry Fink said he is a “big believer” in the crypto asset class.

At the same time, Fink said cryptocurrency is still the center of a global money laundering scheme. He also expressed concerns over the explosion of speculative trading in Asia, a region that has mixed feelings about cryptocurrency.

Following Japan’s landmark decision to recognize bitcoin as a legitimate currency, China and South Korea have launched regulatory campaigns against cryptos. The resulting selloff in the market was short-lived, as investors quickly returned.

Analysts now say the center of power in the cryptocurrency market is shifting to Japan. Just last week, the country’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) officially recognized 11 cryptocurrency exchange operators.

 

Author: Sam Bourgi

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member