This Week in Cryptocurrency – October 20th, 2017
This Week’s Most Popular Crypto News
Bitcoin Price Even After Last Weeks Surge: Last week, Bitcoin’s price rose by more than $1,000 as investors left altcoins and prepared for the two upcoming Bitcoin forks (Bitcoin Gold and SegWit2x). At the time of writing this, Bitcoin’s price has gone down 0.37% in the last 7 days according to CoinMarketCap. See how altcoin prices fared later on in this post.
Ethereum Forks: Earlier this week, Ethereum underwent its fifth hard fork. The price of a single Ether oscillated up and down before settling to around $305.00 today. This hard fork is part of the Byzantium upgrade, and went through smoothly with little to no contention.
Canada Keen on Crypto: The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) recently stated (in a typically Canadian way) that it is “keen to support” initial coin offerings (ICOs) and cryptocurrencies. It has put together a team called the Launchpad to rapidly respond to cryptocurrency offerings and help eligible fintech businesses understand regulatory requirements. The OSC is the largest regulator of securities in Canada and oversees the Toronto Stock Exchange, as well as administers the Commodity Futures Act and Ontario Securities Act.
IBM Goes Crypto: IBM partnered with Stellar to facilitate cross-border payments that can currently handle 7 fiat currencies including British Pounds, Fijian Dollars, Australian Dollars, New Zealand DOllars, and the Tong Pa’anga. It’s interesting to note that Stellar was created as a fork off of the Ripple protocol in 2014, and this is a huge win for Stellar. Following the news, Stellar’s price more than doubled, although the price is now roughly 1.65X where it started.
Good as Gold? Goldman Sachs stated that Bitcoin is not the “new gold” in terms of currency, and attributed this to the vulnerabilities of Bitcoin wallets and exchanges, as well as the price volatility. Goldman Sachs also noted that precious metals such as gold are still the “best long-term store of value”.
This got us thinking. Key characteristics of money are:
- Durability: It needs to be able to last
- Portability: It needs to be convenient and easy to carry around.
- Divisibility: It needs to be able to be broken down into smaller denominations.
- Hard to counterfeit: It must be difficult to fake.
- Acceptance by a general population.
- Value storage: it must be able to generally hold value over time.
We also carried out a poll on our Twitter to get opinions from you guys on the topic. At the time of writing this, the vote is split exactly in half with 1,632 votes. Let us know your thoughts:
Do you think #Bitcoin or Precious Metals meet more of the key characteristics of money?
— CoinCentral (@realcoincentral) October 19, 2017
The debate between crypto and other currencies will continue to go on but in general we found several advantages Bitcoin has over precious metals, most notably its ability to be portable and infinitesimally divisible.
What’s New at CoinCentral?
SegWit2x Guide – With the SegWit2x fork set for mid November, this guide will bring you up to speed.
This week we posted two new in-depth cryptocurrency guides:
- What is Ripple XRP? – Learn about the 3rd largest cryptocurrency that aims to help financial institutions more easily move money across borders.
- What is Monero? – Learn how the privacy focused Monero works and what it does better than Bitcoin.
- If you’re new to cryptocurrency or just new to CoinCentral, you may want to check out some of other guides including:
- Looking for a new cryptocurrency exchange? Check out our continuously growing Exchange Review and Comparison section.
More Cryptocurrency News
Half a Billion Unknowing Crypto Miners: The ad blocking company Adguard analyzed the 100,000 most popular sites ranked by Alexa to scan for browser mining codes such as Coinhive and JSEcoin. The analysis found that 220 of the websites have been using crypto-mining scripts, with the most popular targeted countries being the US. India, Russia, and Brazil. This means that over 500 million people have been unknowingly mining cryptocurrencies.
Beneficial crackdown: The crackdown on ICOs might actually be helping Bitcoin. As countries such as China and South Korea ban token sales of ICOs, people have found a safe haven in Bitcoin instead of different altcoins. The influx of capital into Bitcoin from altcoins has helped to increas the price. As one of the most stable cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin is likely to continue to be a source of relative safety compared to the more volatile altcoin market.
We are the 1%: Another way of looking at Bitcoin’s growth opportunity is by looking at some of its main competitors, the US Dollar and Gold. Bitcoin has grown exponentially in the past few years to a hearty market capitalization of more than $90 billion, but it’s still far from mass market adoption. Bitcoin’s main use cases of being a store of value and a medium of exchange have been limited in comparison to the US Dollar, and that’s largely because it still needs to keep onboarding new users to be a relevant medium of exchange. The US Dollar “narrow money” supply is around $28.6 trillion, and all the gold ever mined is around $8,000 billion. This puts Bitcoin at around 1% or less of the value from these two competitors.
Are US Investors Digging Crypto? A Venturebeat article looked at the distribution of US investors and their interest in cryptocurrencies. What it showed was that cryptocurrency interest was largely correlated with state virtual currency regulations. A few of the states with the highest interested were California, Colorado, Nevada, Texas, and New Hampshire. Hawaii is the state with the least amount of interest.
Julian Assange is Grateful and Petty: Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, tweeted a sarcastically heartfelt thank you to the US government, Senator McCain, and Senator Lieberman for attempting to cut Assange off from any funding after the release of privy government information relating to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Assange was forced to invest in Bitcoin in 2010, nudging him to earn a 50,000% return.
My deepest thanks to the US government, Senator McCain and Senator Lieberman for pushing Visa, MasterCard, Payal, AmEx, Mooneybookers, et al, into erecting an illegal banking blockade against @WikiLeaks starting in 2010. It caused us to invest in Bitcoin — with > 50000% return. pic.twitter.com/9i8D69yxLC
— Julian Assange 🔹 (@JulianAssange) October 14, 2017
From Russia, with Love: In a closed door meeting in Moscow, Vladimir Putin officially stated that Russia will issue its own cryptocurrency. The “CryptoRuble” can be exchanged for fiat Rubles at any time, but if the holder can’t explain where the CryptoRubles came from, they will be charged a 13% tax. Additionally, the CryptoRuble cannot be mined and will only be issuesd, maintained, and controlled by central authorities. [The CoinTelegraph]
From Japan, behind Bars: Yuki Takenaka, the founder and manager of the Ripple exchange in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture was arrested for scamming customers.
Russia’s Ethereum Mining Heats Up: Comino, a Russian cryptocurrency startup, built a high-tech Ethereum mining device that also doubles as a heater. While this sounds like a terrible idea for my home state of Florida, it seems like an easy way to make the best out of the brutal Russian winters.
Trouble for Tezos: You my remember a few months ago Tezos raised $232 million in an ICO. Today, Tezos’ founders Arthur and Kathleen Breitman are in a dispute with the president of a Swiss foundation that helped to handle the ICO and promote Tezos, Johann Gevers. This international dispute threatens the now over $400 million of bitcoin and ether. [Reuters]
This Week’s Crypto Market Performance
While Bitcoin’s price finishes the week nearly even, its two biggest competitors Ethereum ($305.12, -6.07%) and Ripple ($.021609, -12.64%) are both down. Of the 12 cryptocurrencies (including Bitcoin) with a market cap over $1 billion, they’re split 50/50 as gainers and losers.
|Cryptocurrency||Symbol||Market Cap||Price||7 Day Change|
Up 22.25% this week, Qtum’s market cap ($969,007,830) is close to breaking back through the $1 billion mark.
Top 100 Cryptos – Biggest Gainers and Losers
This section shows the cryptocurrencies whose prices rose or dropped the most in the last 7 days (168 hours). In an effort to avoid ultra micro-cap cryptocurrencies, we’ve only included cryptos that started and/or finished the week with a top 100 cryptocurrency market cap (111 total cryptocurrencies). All data is sourced from coinmarketcap.com
This week saw 4 cryptocurrencies’ prices rise more than 100% and 20 rise by more than 10%. The 5 biggest gainers were SmartCash (216%), ZenCash (162.32%), NoLimitCoin (126.29%), Neblio (100.85%), and Metaverse ETP (90.8%).
|Cryptocurrency||Symbol||7 Day Change|
Thankfully for investors, none of the cryptocurrencies on our list lost more than 100%, although 22 cryptos’ prices went down more than 10%. The 5 biggest losers were Centra (-44.12%), ChainLink (-32.55%), Gnosis (-29.42%), Kin (24.54%), and Veritaseum (-24.02%).
|Cryptocurrency||Symbol||7 Day Change|
Chinese Trojan developers arrested after being suspected of illicit control of over 300 million computers. A few have already been released on bail.
The government of Malta has come up with a regulatory framework for the cryptocurrency market. This will help turn Malta into a major crypto hub.
Piracy websites have faced backlash for years from governments and companies whose copyrighted properties have been infringed upon. In consequence, few reputable companies seek to do business with them, making it much harder for these types of sites to turn…
Blockchain may well provide the entertainment industry with an effective way to protect the digital rights of artists and provide them proper compensation.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Alex is the Editor-in-Chief of CoinCentral. Alex also advises blockchain startups, enterprise organizations, and ICOs on content strategy, marketing, and business development. He also regrets not buying more Bitcoin back in 2012, just like you.