This Week in Cryptocurrency – Weekly News Recap
Another Week. Another All Time High. In last weeks newsletter, our top story was Bitcoin breaking $6,000. Just one week later, Bitcoin is now priced at $7,305 at the time of writing this.
World’s Largest Exchange Hops on Board Bitcoin: CME Group Inc., the world’s largest and most diverse derivatives marketplace, stated that it would introduce bitcoin futures by the end of the year. This decision may have been influenced in part by Cboe Global Markets Inc. stating that it planned to offer bitcoin futures earlier this year.
Rich Crypto-Fork Dad, Poor Crypto-Fork Dad: You may have noticed Bitcoin’s price exploded over the last few weeks. This is largely due to market forces allocating their Bitcoin to prepare for the upcoming Bitcoin2x fork. However, let’s explore this to truly understand why. Many savvy Bitcoin investors view forks as an opportunity to essentially get free money when the fork creates two tokens, as we saw with Bitcoin and a Bitcoin Cash. Exchanges that support the fork give Bitcoin holders an equivalent amount of the forked token. So, if you have 100 Bitcoins at the time of the fork, you’ll end up with 100 Bitcoins and 100 Bitcoin2xs after the fork (provided the fork was supported by the exchange of course). This is why we usually tend to see a flood of people allocating their assets into BTC prior to the fork nudging what is potentially an artificial high, and a subsequent outflow back into alts after the fork. Granted, there are several other factors at play and this isn’t investment advice, but you should at least be aware of a patterns such as this.
Bitcoin Back in China Again, Maybe: Following the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China on October 24th, some temporary restrictions, regulations, and policies are cancelled. This means that the ban on Bitcoin trading in China could potentially be one of them. Given the fact that China’s neighbors and national competitors such as Russia and Japan have started to embrace blockchain and move quickly to eat up China’s lost ground during the ban, this doesn’t seem so farfetched. However, this is still a maybe and the news is still developing, but this would obviously be a big deal for the Bitcoin community.
Good as Gold: In an interview with the Epoch Times, blockchain researcher Saifedean Ammous shared some insights on why Bitcoin is as good as gold. The most important aspect is the ability to offer sound money outside of the control of any central government or authority, anywhere in the world. Bitcoin is similar to gold in the sense that its limited supply of 21 million bitcoins makes it “hard money”. This means its quantity is difficult to increase, therefore making it hard to manipulate demand. Where Bitcoin shines above gold, however, is the ability to directly use it as payment sent to anyone anywhere in the world, as well as how relatively inexpensive it is to move around and secure.
Indonesia is Poised for Bitcoin: Indonesia boasts the fourth largest population in the world, 80% of which is unbanked, is offline, and operates on a cash-basis. Since Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies don’t require a bank account, it could potentially offer Indonesian citizens “off the grid” the advantages and convenience of having a digital payment method without having to rely on the severely lacking banking infrastructure. However, a multitude of different elements would have to come into place to make this realistically possible. The largest challenge would be to onboard millions of Indonesians into a tech-heavy payment ecosystem, increasing the amount of people with smartphones, as well as navigating a murky regulatory landscape. [Forbes]
What’s New at CoinCentral?
- This week CoinCentral’s Steven Buchko went into the field (a Chevron Gas Station) to try out using a Bitcoin ATM. This fun read details the not so fun time Steven had using this method for buying Bitcoin.
- In our effort to continue educating the world about cryptocurrency, we added a handful of new guides for various alternative cryptocurrencies:
More Cryptocurrency News From Around the Web
Bitcoin Biz is Boomin’: The Bitcoin-related job marketplace has experienced significant growth, with Freelancer.com reporting an 82% growth in Bitcoin-related jobs just in their third quarter. Everyone from content writers, editors, designers, cryptographers, security experts, marketers, and developers has seen a substantial increase in cryptocurrency related work. Not only is there more work, the work also tends to require a higher level skills and pays on average 10-20% more than standard market rates. Also, if you’re a badass writer that is passionate about cryptocurrencies, we’re hiring too 😉
Russia’s Up to Something: In the short span of one year, the Russian government went from potentially handing out 7-year jail sentences to anyone using Bitcoin to becoming one of the world’s burgeoning cryptocurrency hubs. The private sector embracing blockchain is nothing out of the ordinary, as private companies all over the world are building innovative technologies with blockchain. The sudden and rapid Russian government adoption and embracing of a technology that it viewed as punishable by law, however, seems a bit out of place. There are a handful of theories such as the stimulating of economic growth without a reliance on oil and gas, or a way for Russian oligarchs to avoid Western sanctions, or, if you ask Reddit and some Facebook groups, to hodl Bitcoin and buy lambos.
South Korea Regulations Bitcoin as Commodity: The South Korean central bank, the Bank of Korea, announced that Bitcoin is going to be regulated as a commodity instead of a currency. The central bank does not plan to launch the regulation soon.
Words of Caution from Ron Paul: In a recent interview with Kitco News, former-Presidential candidate Ron Paul urged that the US government should take a “wait and see” approach rather than jumping into it. As for Bitcoin competing with the US dollar, Paul noted that if the people want to use Bitcoin,” the government should stay out of it.”
Crypto-Hedge Funds on the Rise: Upwards of 90 hedge funds focused on digital assets such as Bitcoin came out of the woodwork in 2017, bringing the total number of crypto-funds to 124. It’s estimated that the assets under management by crypto-funds is around $2.3 billion, a hefty lump sum capable of moving markets but not quite anywhere near the record $3.15 trillion the hedge fund industry holds.
Off to the Regulating Races: With over 30 global regulators announcing their individual plans of how to approach ICOs and token sales, we can see a global regulating landscape starting to form. Japan, for example, has 11 regulated Bitcoin exchanges and it has been said they control over 60% of the global Bitcoin market, whereas China outright banned the sale of cryptocurrencies and ICOs. The global crypto asset market is valued at $180 billion, making it a substantial focal point for many governments.
Blessings from Thiel: Peter Thiel, billionaire venture capitalist, has supported Bitcoin for a long time, and stated that people are still underestimating it. As one of the cofounders of PayPal, Thiel has significant insight into the potential of Bitcoin revolutionizing the monetary and payments space. As someone who is tired of paying 2.9% just to receive a payment, it’s not hard to agree with him.
New York Arrests Alleged ICO-Scamming Businessman: Maksim Zaslavskiy, a New York-based businessman was arrested for securities fraud conspiracy connected to two ICOs. Zaslavskiy was allegedly luring investors by making promises of high returns. If guilty, Zaslavskiy could face up to five years in prison and a fine. [The CoinTelegraph]
GDAX Outlines Its Future Token Standards: On November 2nd, GDAX published its Digital Asset Framework that outlined the criteria future tokens need to meet in order to be listed. A few of these criteria include whether or not the digital asset aligns GDAX’s values and mission, as well as whether it would be legal under current U.S. securities laws.
What Will Bitcoin Look Like in Twenty Years? If you’ve made it this far through our newsletter, you might not be one to shy away from a good (and long) read. Tuesday Daniel Jeffries attempted to predict the future, detailing what he thinks is in store for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, and Blockchain. This medium post for Hackernoon is an estimated 34 minute read, but it’s worth the time if you have it.