BITCOIN PRICE NEWS
Bitcoin is being traded at above the $1,700 margin and in some markets such as South Korea, it is being traded at over $1,900. Meanwhile, the market cap of alternative cryptocurrencies or altcoins including Ethereum, Ripple and Litecoin have fallen significantly over the past 24 hours.
As seen in the chart above, every altcoin on the global top 10 cryptocurrency chart by market capitalization fell significantly. With the exception of bitcoin, the other nine cryptocurrencies including Ripple, Litecoin, NEM and Ethereum Classic experienced heavy fluctuation in a relatively short period of 24 hours, decreasing by nearly 20 percent in price.
Ripple for instance took over Ethereum to become the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap on May 8 briefly. However, due to its short-term fall in price, RIpple’s market cap declined by nearly $3 billion in the past 48 hours.
While there exists no conclusive evidence to prove the relationship between the price trend of bitcoin and altcoins, it is quite evident that the decline in altcoins often lead to the rise in bitcoin price. One unique component of this hypothetical yet evident relationship between bitcoin and altcoins is that the altcoin market is benefiting from bitcoin’s explosive growth in countries as Japan, the US and South Korea. In other words, when altcoins increase in value, most times, bitcoin also demonstrates a slight surge in its value because the entire cryptocurrency market is seeing a rise in demand.
Specifically, when Litecoin at last activated the highly anticipated and long awaited Segregated Witness (Segwit), the transaction malleability fix and scaling solution developed by the Bitcoin Core development team, bitcoin price gained an upward momentum with Litecoin, due to the community’s optimism toward bitcoin. Perceiving Litecoin as a testbed for bitcoin, which conceptually is appropriate due to the similarity between the two cryptocurrencies’ structure, an increasing number of investors stated to invest in bitcoin.
However, today’s short term decrease of altcoins seems to have stemmed from security issues of Poloniex, the largest altcoin exchange in the global market. Earlier today, Poloniex fell victim to a DDoS attack and was force to mitigate the attacks to continue its services. More to that, bitcoin enthusiast Charlie Shrem harshly criticized Poloniex at the Toronto bitcoin meetup, calling Poloniex “the biggest danger” in the cryptocurrency space.
Whether the short term fluctuation of altcoins had to do with issues of Poloniex or was just simply daily volatility is not an important discussion point to lead. What needs to be discussed is the extreme volatility which altcoins demonstrate on a regular basis. It is difficult to justify the market cap and actual value of cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum and Ripple, the second and third largest cryptocurrencies, if their market cap fluctuations by billions overnight.
At the Bitcoin Cologne meetup in Koln, Germany, bitcoin and security expert Andreas Antonopoulos stated that the mainstream adoption of bitcoin will most likely take 15 to 20 years.
Previously, extreme changes in monetary policies and financial ecosystems took decades or even centuries for people to adopt. As noted by Antonopoulos, the replacement of gold with paper certificates of gold ownership, which the world now recognizes it as fiat money or cash, took over 400 years to be broadly deployed and accepted by the mainstream society.
The next revolution of money emerged upon the introduction of the concept of credit cards. Although the fundamental concept of credit cards was based on an existing financial and monetary structure in cash, the mainstream adoption of credit cards took over 50 years or five decades.
Bitcoin has been growing an exponential pace which analysts failed to predict. Bitcoin’s market cap is currently at $23.7 billion and has consistently proven to be the best performing currency in the world. In the starting of 2017, bitcoin price averaged at $1,017 and its market cap was at $16.3 billion. Within a five-month period, bitcoin increased by over 30 percent in value.
The Bitcoin network is at an ideal position to grow and to target mainstream adoption for various reasons. Some of these include the rise demand for bitcoin from institutional developers, legalization of bitcoin in countries such as Japan and the Philippines, active development community and low volatility rate. Due to bitcoin’s decreasing volatility rate, more businesses have begun to adopt bitcoin and offer the digital currency as a method of payment.
Most notably, Japan’s Bic Camera started to provide a bitcoin payment option for its customers in Japan. As a result, bitcoin received nationwide mainstream media coverage and rapid industrial growth.
With governments already aggressively pushing the concept of a private network of transactions to build a centralized digital currency platform, the race as Antonopoulos explained has been initiated. People now have to make a choice. Either be forced to adopt a centralized, unsecure and opaque in the long run or adopt cryptographic, decentralized, transparent and secure digital currency in bitcoin for financial independence and privacy.
George Kikvadze, the executive vice chairman of Bitfury, believes the delay in the activation of the Bitcoin Core team’s Segregated WItness (Segwit) is costing the bitcoin industry $40 to 50 billion.
On April 30, Kikvadze and the rest of the executives at Bitfury led a meeting with its investors and other potential high profile investors. According to Kikvadze, investors who participated in the meeting unanimously agreed to invest in bitcoin and its businesses only if bitcoin is scaled with viable solutions such as Segwit. Kikvadze wrote:
For the most part, Kikvadze’s request to both the mining community and industry to support the activation of a scaling solution for the greater good of bitcoin is reasonable and understandable. There exists many users and investors looking forward to enter the realm of bitcoin and the cryptocurrency industry who are held back by bitcoin’s current scalability issues.
Blockchain congestion, transaction delays and the development of a fee market are contributing to the stall of development in terms of bitcoin’s codebase, user base, and industry.
Earlier last month, one of Japan’s most influential brand and electronics retailer Bic Camera began to accept bitcoin payments at their physical locations located in the most expensive, vibrant and lively parts of Japanese cities. Bic Camera’s bitcoin campaign led to nationwide coverage of the digital currency and such positive press synergized with the Japanese government’s decision to recognize bitcoin as legal tender.
Bitcoin is currently in urgent need of a scaling solution. Its mempool often reach 80,000 to 100,000 transactions, which means that the majority of bitcoin transactions remain delayed and unconfirmed. Although most delays can be attributed to the attachment of disproportional and low transaction fees, the development of the fee market raised the optimal bitcoin transaction fee significantly over the past few months, sometimes costing users up to $1 per transaction.
If bitcoin scales with solutions such as Segwit, Extension Blocks or Bitcoin Unlimited and gains both substantial on-chain capacity expansion as well as infrastructure for two-layer solutions including Lightning and TumbleBit, bitcoin price will most likely surge due to the emergence of millions of new users and large groups of investors.
Upon the activation of a scaling solution, Kikvadze believes $40 to 50 billion will be added to the industry and potentially, the market cap of bitcoin. Hence, Kikvadze predicts bitcoin price could achieve $5,000 with Segwit or any other scaling solutions that could emerge in the future.
Referring to Litecoin’s recent activation of Segwit, Kikvadze wrote:
On March 10, the US Securities Exchange Commission officially denied the proposal of the Winklevoss twins to introduce a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the public market. At the time, the SEC attributed the reasons of denial to the lack of surveillance on traders and regulation in the overseas market.
The SEC announced:
Prior to the official decision of the SEC, analysts and researchers noted that the likelihood of the bitcoin ETF being approved was relatively high and that 72 percent were in favor of approving the bitcoin ETF. Such predictions arose when the Winklevoss twins partnered with major financial and auditing firm State Street Bank & Trust to increase the transparency and legitimacy of the ETF.
Despite such efforts of the Winklevoss twins and other involved parties including BATS Global Markets and State Street, the SEC declined the proposal of the COIN ETF.
In response to the decision of the SEC, the majority of the community including bitcoin non-profit research center Coin Center executive director Jerry Brito reaffirmed that the reasoning behind the SEC’s decision was not sufficient to decline the COIN ETF. Brito said:
Some experts on ETF further explained that the SEC most likely did not approve the ETF due to the lack of incentives on the organization’s part. If SEC officials approve an ETF, they are wholly responsible for any damages it may cause to the public market. But, if the ETF performs well, there exists no incentives for SEC officials.
Although bitcoin price immediately declined from around $1270 to $980 within minutes, it recovered as the community, industry and market began to understand that bitcoin does not need an ETF to begin with. Security and bitcoin expert Andreas Antonopoulos explained that bitcoin was introduced to defeat the markets that have rejected to adopt bitcoin. Simply put, bitcoin was developed to replace the global financial system and its relevant parties such as the SEC.
Yet, on March 24, BATS Global Markets filed a petition to have the SEC re-examine the recent denial of the Winklevoss twins’ bitcoin ETF. On April 24, exactly a month after the petition of BATS Global Markets was filed, the SEC announced officially that the organization will be reviewed again and results will be revealed on or before May 15, 2017.
The SEC announced:
For the reasons stated above, it is hereby: ORDERED that the petition of BZX for review of the Division’s action to disapprove the proposed rule change by delegated authority be GRANTED; and It is further ORDERED that any party or other person may file a statement in support of or in opposition to the action made pursuant to delegated authority on or before May 15, 2017. The order disapproving such proposed rule change shall remain in effect. By the Commission.
The first quarter of 2017 has been a revelation, if you’re a digital currency investor. Whether you like a particular currency’s fundamentals or not, now is the time people are buying in and making a small fortune on most options on the market. Thursday, however, was a return of the bears to Bitcoin, as BTC dropped nearly 10% before rebounding 3%. Here’s why.
USD and The Fed were major factors
In the Bitcoin community, it has been quite a while, since early-2013, since the U.S. dollar has been the major player in exchange currency for Bitcoin. Chinese Yuan and now the Japanese Yen, have been the major forces investing in Bitcoin, but the USD is back on the scene. As the Coinhills chart below shows, at least for Thursday, this 24-hour currency exchange chart for Bitcoin shows there was major Western money moving on Bitcoin. The USD took up better than a third of the exchange market, apparently mostly out of it, as Bitcoin fell like a rock. Why?
With the announcement by Federal Reserve figurehead Janet Yellen of an interest rate increase on Wednesday, it seems that Americans with money in Bitcoin dumped it for Gold, as Gold took off in lockstep with BTC’s fall from over $1250 early on Thursday, according to GoldPrice.org. Here is Bitcoin’s activity versus the Gold market on Thursday, versus the Bitcoin price drop yesterday on BitcoinAverage.com:
Bitcoin did rebound about three percent in the evening, so Bitcoin is worth more than the $1140 it bottomed out at. One digital currency that is not bottoming out is Ethereum, which is crushing the market, a la Dash, over the last few week. Ethereum started Thursday trading at less than $35 USD and as of this writing, it had passed $45 USD for a better than 30% daily gain.
This can be attributed, at least in part, to the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance deal that we reported on last month. Some of the world’s top corporations will collaborate with Ethereum’s brand of blockchain technology, including Fortune 500 companies like Intel, Microsoft, J.P. Morgan and ING. Ethereum started the year trading at less than $8 USD.
Altcoin Dash has retreated since it’s $101 USD all-time high on Wednesday, stepping back about 10% overall to around $90. It has still had an unprecedented level of gains in Q1, beginning the year at just over $11 USD. As Bitcoin fork fear speculation has swelled over the last month, so has Dash’s market value.
This week may prove to be one of the most pivotal weeks in Bitcoin history. With the Bitcoin price set to climb, or fall, at a pronounced rate within the next few days, some experts are using this time to express their optimism. Two such experts can see Bitcoin price reaching as much as $3000, or £3000, before year’s end.
Bitcoin price is up almost 200% over the last years, and with the SEC’s Winklevoss ETF ruling still days away, it is a great time to swing forthe fences. Adam Davies, a consultant at Altus Consulting, is one of those who is very “bullish” on Bitcoin price speculation, at least before the SEC’s ruling.
Peter Smith, CEO of Blockchain, a bitcoin wallet, told CNBC by email that his company is seeing "unprecedented volume and sign ups", adding that at the current price appreciation, a £3,000 dollar price by the end of the year is "feasible".
Other experts, like Tone Vays, posited the idea last week on his YouTube channel this run up to the ETF ruling by the eleventh was a great time for a “pump-anddump” approach by investors, with prices falling sharply just before the announcement. The almost 10% drop in Bitcoin prices we have seen in the last 24 hours may have supported that prognostication.
In my humble opinion, the ETF will make a significant difference in what Bitcoin is value at the end of 2017. Without any ETF option in 2016, Bitcoin price rose over 125%, so the ETF will not make or break Bitcoin. It is just a multiplier I agree that $3000, or £3000, is a legitimate target, but only if the ETF goes through.
And remember, there are more ETF rulings in the pipeline after March 11th. Until an ETF goes through, it may be best to keep expectation to $2000 or less in 2017. Bitcoin doesn’t need its own version of PED’s to succeed, but it may get an injection anyway.
Bitcoin seems to be doing very well, to the untrained eye. ETFs are popping up like daisies, Bitcoin price is at an all-time high, and mainstream publicity is copious and almost positive. However, there are cracks in the foundation of the world’s premier blockchain network. The fees for processing a Bitcoin transaction are going through the roof, and BitPay’s CEO is sounding the alarm.
Bitcoin, we have a problem
Stephen Pair is Bitpay’s co-founder and CEO, and he wrote about his views on how the functionality of the global payment protocol is going in early 2017. His report was not very good. He ended the post ever-optimistically, but he is disturbed by this growing trend of ever-increasing fees that his business is paying, the cost of doing business, here in Q1 of 2017.
After checking into it on an average cost per transaction basis, you can definitely see prices for Bitcoin transactions have taken off. If you go back to January of 2016, fees were in the $0.15 range, but according to 21.co, the average nondelayed, non-mempool transaction is going through at almost 500 bits. This is equal to about $0.67 right now, or about a 350% increase in just over a year. That’s not a Venezuelan rate of inflation, but it is definitely a red flag.
The chart above clearly shows the more you apy, the more you play. The standard fee transactions at the top, the ones that actually worked fairly well a year ago, is seeing a 5-block, 40-minute delay, on average. I have definitely been seeing that, in the real world, and maybe you have too, unless you can adjust your fee settings skyward.
He also mentioned that more businesses and larger value transactions are coming through their system, which will create a de facto caste system for miners. They’ll want to do the larger transactions, with more bytes and higher fees, which will delay more small transactions into a backlogged mempool. He foresees a future where the larger transactions will happen on-chain, and the smaller one’s off-chain.
Optimistically, he sees the benefit of an off-chain Bitcoin processor, like The Lightning Network, being forced to market due to these growing fee-based issues. Pair is surprised the system is still stuck at 1 MB after all these years. He sees the sides of the issue looking like this:
Pair agrees with Bitcoin experts like Andreas Antonopoulos and others that the future for Bitcoin is very bright and these issues will sort themselves out, without the ecosystem imploding int he process. There are too many people with too much invested to not work this conundrum out. It may take Bitcoin to the brink of global mempool hell before the miners are cornered into action, but something’s gotta give.
Bitcoin has passed a major psychological benchmark, again. Earlier this year, Bitcoin passed $1000 USD in value, then it passed its all-time high of over $1180 USD. Now, Bitcoin has officially, and rather easily, passed the international standard for commodity investment value. Bitcoin, on March 2nd, 2017 (my birthday) passed Gold for value per unit of measure for the first time ever.
Not Bitcoin News That Is Welcomed By All
Bitcoin has been on a tear, since starting the year off stumbling to a value of about $775 USD during the first week of 2017. It has gained over 61% in value in less than sixty days. While many in the Bitcoin community are swelling with pride over this significant bit of mainstream approval, not all are enamored with the prospect that some will say Bitcoin is more valuable than Gold.
Those with a vested interest in precious metals, or who specifically make money on the trade of said commodities, like Peter Schiff, have come out publicly against the market competitor. Earlier this week, Schiff debated CNBC contributor and Bitcoin expert Brian Kelly on CNBC’s investment show ‘Fast Money.’
Some Bitcoin experts are speculating that speculators are pumping Bitcoin value up prior to the Securities Exchange Commission’s decision on March 11th to get the most value out of Bitcoin before selling next week. The market is still small enough that a geat deal of investing is not necessary to move the market in your direction. If the SEC does as expected and declined the Winklevoss ETF, the smart money moves out of Bitcoin just before the 11th, and they make a handsome profit. Those who are Bitcoin lifers are making a profit either way, whether it is next week, or later in 2017.
In closing, what we all should have learned from this socio-economic experiment that is Bitcoin is to be mindful not to listen to The Establishment. Hear what they say, even remember what they ay, just don’t listen too much. The Establishment said Bitcoin was a scam. They said Bitcoin would never work. They said no one would ever use Bitcoin. They said it has no value. They said mainstream will never use it. They said it would never reach the value of silver, much less gold.
Now, it is The Establishment that is looking to use Bitcoin’s technology to improve and evntually replace their outdated, costly, time-consuming and fallible IT systems. Surely, I am not the only one who has noticed this evolution of Bitcoin to true financial providence? This triumph reminds me of a famous quote.
“Fight, they laugh at you. Then, they ignore you. Then, they fight you. Then, you win!” - Mahatma Gandhi
Image provided by ZeroHedge
After another turbulent January that had even the most faithful shaken about Bitcoin’s future, the February rally has rekindled the greater community. A January roller-coaster has become a February value rocket, as the Bitcoin price has set a new high-water mark for 2017, as it closes in on a new all-time record, according to the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (XBP).
As a brief recap, Bitcoin started the year on a high, making a furious run at $1000 in value as 2016 closed. The first week of 2017 remained on this bull-run, peaking at almost $1130 USD, but Chinese regulators began the new year cracking down on exchanges and their no-fee trading practices. The market crashed to as low as $775 USD exactly one week later, and Bitcoin has been on the rebound ever since.
This latest run from just under $1000 USD last week to a new 2017 this week seems rooted in the upcoming speculation on the ETF fielded by The Winklevoss Twins, which is due for a decision on March 11th. According to MarketWatch, even though the odds of an approval are long against the ETF, the fact that there are more than one in the pipeline seems to give investors enough hope of an approval to start buying in.
A few weeks ago, Grayscale, which launched the Bitcoin Investment Trust in 2013, filed for an initial public offering that would allow its trust to trade as an ETF on the New York Stock Exchange. The Grayscale bitcoin trust is presently one of the few registered investment vehicles available to financial institutions. A company known as SolidX has also filed for a bitcoin ETF.
The previous high in early January was the highest the Bitcoin had been since the bubble that was Mt. Gox in early December of 2013, when values reached over $1180 USD, according to BitcoinAverage.com, who has been tracking Bitcoin’s price since 2010. Now that Bitcoin is within shouting distance, the way things are going, it seems assured that the all-time mark will be set before March 11th, as Bitcoin has gained what would be needed, just over $50 USD, in the last 48 hours.
The global Bitcoin market seems to be healthier than ever before, with less centralization in exchange trading. By currency, Japan has taken control of Bitcoin’s market with over 50% of the purchases done in Japanese Yen. This seems related to their advocacy of the no-fee trade policy that gained China control of the market.
This leads to many trades that are less than legitimate and encourages traders to trade against themselves to lower exchange costs. However, the mainstream market in Japan is accepting Bitcoin use more and more. There is also more and more Bitcoin legislation in Japan, but that is also not as positive a development as it may seem.
In my writing career, I have never done a Video Review before, as I have never a Bitcoin-related video worthy of a review, but this video inspired me. Hopefully, this doesn’t come across as promotional, because my goal is to educate, not remunerate. Since this video is not promoting any product, except for the digital asset’s value itself, a worthy ideal, in my opinion, let’s look at a new video called “10 Reasons Bitcoin Price Will Destroy All-Time Highs in 2017.”
I will place the video below this article, for your convenience, but before you scroll down, let me give you an outline. The video is current and up-to-date, as it is only about ten days old, and it seeks to affirm the general optimism that surrounds Bitcoin’s potential price for 2017. It is produced by the “Renegade Investor” YouTube channel and is on the long side, standing at over twenty-six minutes.
What you give up in speed you get back in scope. The most impressed aspect to me about the video is the comprehensive research of each point. Plenty of sources were enlisted in the creation, and the reasoning is all sound logic, in a matter-offact type manner of delivery. I was actually expecting 1-2 of the sections to be dismissable fluff, but this video did not fail to deliver value on each and every point noted. All points are legitimate and worthy of consideration for the new investor, except for one.
The fifth item listed in Bitcoin’s favor is “Scaling Segregated Witness” and it intimates that SegWit should be adopted by the 95% of miners who signal they're ready to employ it by this November. As is shown in a progress chart in the video, SegWit has remained in the 25% range for an extended period of time.
I’m personally worried that SegWit will never gain adoption to allow the scalability features like The Lightning Network to take hold. The Lightning Network could allow Bitcoin to effectively scale from the current limits of seven transactions, or less, per second, to as many as 10,000 per second (Visa will tap out at about 24,000 transcations per second, not the 2000-4000 mentioned in the video.)
The Renegade Investor also mentions a double of the effective block size just through SegWit adoption alone, when the actual increase is around 70% over current limits, but the video is very comprehensive, mentioning the sweeping mainstream adoption of Bitcoin into popular Japanese culture, how the current bond market will influence Bitcoin value, and the effects of Bitcoin eventually passing Gold’s market price. Even clips from The Keiser Report are used effectively.
Finer details aside, this video provides a lot of value. If you know of someone who is on the fence about getting involved in Bitcoin, as an investment, I can safely recommend this video to persuade the masses. It doesn’t shill for any product and just provides solid value for those who want the current state of the Bitcoin. Feel free to share this.