This Week in Cryptocurrency–March 9th, 2018
Bad News Bears
Winter’s nearly over, folks, and this week, the bears took notice by coming out of hibernation–in the cryptocurrency market, at least. Prices rose strongly in the first half of the week, with coins testing their all-time highs since the January-February crash, but buying power took a turn for the worse in the latter half of the week. Just as prices looked like they might break their previous resistance levels, they bounced downward. Amidst media fanfare of regulatory worries and Mt. Gox crashing the market (again), coins across the board dropped their furthest over the week in the last 48 hours.
Bitcoin: Unable to maintain or transcend a price over $11,500 in the middle of the week, Bitcoin’s price loss has (unsurprisingly) mirrored the market’s own. At $8720 during the time of this writing, it’s down 19% on the week.
Ethereum: Crypto’s #2 is doing even worse. After seeing static price action and a stable chart for most of the week, it’s currently trading at $685. That’s a 20% hit from the $865 it sported at the beginning of the week.
Ripple: With rumors of Ripple’s imminent Coinbase listing, XRP rose to $1.08 after starting its week out at $0.90. With the market turning and Coinbase silencing the chatter over adding new currencies, it’s down 11% on the week–but hey, that’s at least half better than BTC/ETH.
Even if only by a few percentage points, S/O to those assets that are still green, namely: Bitcore Aeternity, Loopring, HShare, SingularityNET, SmartCash, and Ethos
Twitter Scammers Are Impersonating Famous People to Steal Your Crypto: Just like with the Nigerian Prince, if it sounds too good to be true, it’s probably a scam. What’s happening is people are sending crypto to addresses they believe to be owned by high profile figures like Elon Musk who promise to give them much more back. Some of you may be thinking “wow, who would ever fall for this?”. Apparently, a lot of people: so many that Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin changed his username to “No I’m not giving away ETH”.
No, I’m not giving away ETH.
— Vitalik “No I’m not giving away ETH” Buterin (@VitalikButerin) March 4, 2018
Unregulated Exchanges Can Do Anything With Money Says SEC: In a warning to investors, the SEC said: “many platforms refer to themselves as ‘exchanges’, which can give the misimpression to investors that they are regulated or meet the regulatory standards of a national securities exchange”. Even though some exchanges have their own rules in place, the SEC cannot guarantee the safety of your coins.
Co-founder of Uber is Launching His Own Cryptocurrency: Garrett Camp, co-founder of Uber and founder of the accelerator/venture fund Expa, named the cryptocurrency “Eco”. Camp hopes the coin will be used as a global currency used in the transaction of everyday payments. 50% of the initial one trillion tokens it issues will be given to the first 1 billion users who sign up.
Hackers Walked Away with $1.2 Billion in Bitcoin and Ether This Decade: This is why people are always telling you to keep your crypto off exchanges. According to global director of fintech strategy at Autonomous Research LLP Lex Sokolin, “it looks like crypto hacking is a $200 million annual revenue industry”. According to him, hackers have jeopardized more than 14% of the Bitcoin and Ether supply. Being that blockchain is such a new technology, the industry hasn’t had time to solve vulnerabilities and blockchain could potentially be more defenseless than previously imagined.
JP Morgan Gets in the Game with Crypto Report for Asset Managers: On its website, institutional banking goliath JP Morgan published an official report on the benefits blockchain brings to the financial and business sectors. Targeted towards asset managers, it calls blockchain “the real deal,” implores financial bigwigs to get off the sidelines, and projects the future of blockchain adoption by touting its potential impact on legacy organizations.
If You Can Cough Up the Cash, Coinbase Has a Crypto Index Fund Ready to Take It: Earlier this week, Coinbase–perhaps the world’s most popular place to buy and sell popular coins for cash–announced that it would be establishing its own cryptocurrency index fund. Heralded as the Dow Jones of crypto, the Coinbase Index Fund will consist of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin, and will be open only to accredited investors. Calling it the Dow Jones of crypto may be a bit embellishing. Sure, it’s the first index fund from one of crypto’s big boys, but the Dow Jones is open to all investors and includes an average 30 stocks at a given time, not 4.
Real Estate on the Blockchain? It’s Real, Alright, and It’s Happening in Vermont: The first ever blockchain-driven real estate transaction took place this past Thursday in South Burlington, VT. The transaction took place thanks to Propy Inc., a blockchain real estate company that the city partnered with back in January. Sources close to the business deal championed that transaction and South Burlington’s initiative to oversee it, branding that city as a “global blockchain leader.”
New York Federal Judge: Cryptocurrencies are Commodities: US District Judge Jack Weinstein validated this week what the CFTC has been saying since 2015: crypto is a commodity. The NY State judge made the landmark ruling on Tuesday, and it will allow the CFTC to continue its lawsuit against Patrick McDonnell and Coin Market Drops for fraud.
What’s New at CoinCentral?
“Blockchain is the Real Deal”: JP Morgan unveils a report on crypto’s economic advantages, serving as a physical testament to the increased interest in blockchain and cryptocurrencies we’ve seen over the past year.
What is Enigma: Enigma promising privacy and scalability, it’s rare to come across such a unique project with a dedicated, vetted team striving to make conception a reality.
What is SmartCash (SMART)?: SmartCash is a project that’s all-in on open governance. It’s especially attractive for those who are interested in privacy, transparency, and decentralization at all costs.
Bluzelle CEO Pavel Bains Talks Decentralized Cloud Database: At this year’s Neo DevCon, we had the pleasure of sitting down with Pavel Bains, CEO of Bluzelle.
What is Streamr DATAcoin?: Find out how this project could provide an alternative hub for data monetization that competes with current cloud-base, centralized models.
Coinbase Poised to Launch its Own Cryptocurrency Index Fund: Now, they’ll be offering customers what amounts to the Dow Jones or the S&P 500 of crypto assets: the Coinbase Index Fund.
What is Reddcoin (RDD)?: Imagine being paid in crypto for your FB post, and being able to trade it for products, gift cards, and other items. Welcome to Reddcoin.
What is ZenCash (ZEN)?: Learn why ZenCash is a true leader not only in privacy but with governance, economic incentives, and sheer engineering ingenuity.
What is Dogezer (DGZ)?: In this beginner’s guide, find out how Dogezar created a platform to leverage network effects to the benefit of the creators and early adopters of new software.
Who is John McAfee: Bold, Bizarre, and Bullish on Bitcoin: Dangerous. Paranoid. Eccentric. Bullish on Bitcoin.These are a few words that pop up in a quick search for John McAfee – a bold series of adjectives for a computer programmer and founder of a software company.
What is Zcoin?: Zcoin utilizes the Zerocoin protocol to provide anonymous transactions in a unique scalable way. The protocol, originally intended to be an extension of Bitcoin, allows you to send coins with no transaction history.
Decred Unveils 2018 Roadmap: The Decred team is working on some pretty cool projects, and unveiled plans for decentralized exchanges, privacy features, & more.
DeepBrain Chain CEO Discusses Blockchain’s Role in the Future of AI: Why artificial intelligence on the blockchain? DeepBrain Chain’s CEO discusses the topic.
What is Byteball (GBYTE)?: Learn more about how Byteball aims to solve many of the problems that have impeded the mass adoption of blockchain technology.
What is BitBay (BAY)?: BitBay is a free, decentralized marketplace for buying and selling goods and services on the blockchain. You can connect directly with peers and transact without the need for a middleman like Amazon, eBay, or Craigslist.
Cryptocurrency News from Around the World
Japanese Regulators are Cracking Down & Suspending Some Exchanges: The Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA) “will slap administrative punishment notices on several cryptocurrency exchanges” and force some to halt their business. The move comes after the FSA exposed pitfalls in the various exchanges anti-money laundering and customer protection measures during on-site checks.
Venezuelan Legislators Deem the Petro Unlawful: Venezuela’s National Assembly, a body of politicians that often opposes the policies of President Nicolas Maduro, declared Tuesday that the Petro is unconstitutional. The group accuses the Petro as being just another way for the corrupt government to embezzle money, and that it will not help the Venezuelans out their economic crises. Instead, it will worsen the economy and give false hope to a nation under Maduro, who spun the idea of the Petro “from a web of lies”.
The Chinese Gov. is Censoring Crypto Exchanges Social Media Accounts: It looks like the Chinese government will continue its brutal fight against cryptocurrency. Social media accounts like those of global exchange OKEx on China’s main social messaging app WeChat have already been blocked. When you try to go to previous links posted by the exchange, a message states that “the platform may have violated relevant laws and regulations after being reviewed per users’ complaints. The account is currently blocked and content is not available.”
Binace Users Have Accounts Phished, Bots Sell Alts for Viacoin: This Wednesday, Binance users complained that the exchange had forcefully sold their altcoins, converting them to Bitcoin only to purchase the obscure Viacoin off the site. After doing some digging, the Binance team discovered that afflicted users had been subjects of a phishing attack wherein the hacker downloaded trading bots on their profiles, converted funds to Bitcoin, and then used that Bitcoin the purchase and pump Viacoin. Luckily, Binance’s alert triggers caught the scam and suspended withdrawals before the hacker(s) could withdraw their inflated boon. The clever scam goes to show that hackers are ramping up their game, but it also proves that Binance, one of the world’s most popular exchanges, is worth its salt.
At Just 22-Years-Old, the German IOTA Founder Is Just Getting Started: Roughly 50 people work under the leadership of Dominik Schiener, who’s been living in Berlin since 2016. Expanding to more territories soon including Toronto, Oslo, Taiwan, and Tokyo, the project holds more than 300 million Euros in reserves to fund the project, all of which were donated by users. Networking from the German capital, IOTA already has companies like Volkswagen jumping on board with the project.
Thieves on the Hot Seat as Iceland Police Arrest 11 Suspected in Mining Hardware Heist: Home to cheap, renewable energy and a cold, mining-favorable climate, Iceland has become a popular country for cryptocurrency miners to set up shop. A good place to start, until some ne’er-do-wells decide to filch 600 pieces of mining hardware (computers, processors, etc.) valued at roughly $2mln. The four separate burglaries took place between December and January, and the Icelandic police have apprehended 11 suspects whom they believe to be culprits in the crime.
Four Years Removed from Mt.Gox and Investors are Still Getting Dumped On (Literally): Anger, disgust, sadness, pity, dread: all sentiments the mention of Mt. Gox might stir up, especially for individuals who lived through the event that threw crypto into a 2-year-long winter in 2014. Well low and behold, the aftermath is still causing a scene. Reports earlier this week suggest that much of the bearish price action in the market recently may be attributed to Nobuaki Kobayashi, one of the now-defunct exchange’s trustees, selling 35,000 BTC and 34,000 BCH to satisfy the Mt. Gox’s debt with creditors. The funds were sold-off between December and February, and they accounted for roughly $400mln in total trades.
Crypto Goes Pedagogical: Cryptocurrency Added to Merriam-Webster Dictionary: The popular dictionary revealed in a blog post earlier this week that, among 850 new additions to their definitions this March, cryptocurrency, blockchain, and initial coin offering were added to the list. Emily Brewster, an associate editor at Merriam-Webster, explained the organization’s rationale in a press release: “In order for a word to be added to the dictionary it must have widespread, sustained, and meaningful use. These new words have been added to the dictionary because they have become established members of the English language, and are terms people are likely to encounter.”
Colin Harper coauthored this post*
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