Srp 16

Coinbase Custody Acquires Xapo’s Institutional Business

Coinbase Custody today announced that it has acquired Xapo’s institutional business, making it the largest crypto-custodian in the world. The acquisition brings Assets Under Custody (AUC) to over $7 billion, servicing over 120 clients in 14 countries.


Innovation In Cryptocurrency Custody

Xapo is a long-respected name in the world of cryptocurrency custody solutions. It has led the industry in developing security techniques to meet the rigours of institutional clients.

In 2017 it hit the headlines for storing customers’ bitcoin in a fortified ex-military bunker in the Swiss Alps. By May 2018 it was holding around $10 billion in bitcoin for customers across five continents.

CEO, Wences Casares, has long been a champion of Bitcoin, and Xapo’s mission is to make Bitcoin secure and accessible. Casares believes that any investor who doesn’t have at least a one percent position in Bitcoin is being irresponsible.

Coinbase’s Move Into Crypto-Custody

Coinbase Custody started trading a year ago, with a remit to provide secure cryptocurrency storage for institutional investors. According to marketing it combined the ‘battle tested’ cold-storage solutions employed by the Coinbase exchange, with an institutional-grade broker/dealer.

It quickly added a raft of additional crypto-assets to its original four of BTC, ETH, BCH, and LTC. However, there were questions as to whether institutions would immediately trust the offering. Certainly, while the bear market was in full swing, growth in AUC was slow.

It wasn’t until the bulls really started taking control again in May this year, that AUC crossed the $1 billion mark. But since then, growth has been steadier, and with this latest acquisition of Xapo’s institutional business, Coinbase Custody are claiming over $7 billion in held assets.

The Final Hurdle To Institutional Adoption?

There are many who think that crypto-custody is the final hurdle to institutional adoption of bitcoin and cryptocurrency. This area is certainly where a lot of resources are currently being deployed.

Bakkt is still waiting on approval from the New York authorities for its custody solution, before it can start offering its physically backed bitcoin futures products. Fidelity’s move into crypto-custodianship was supposed to remove one of the final barriers to institutional adoption back in March.

Even the South Koreans are getting in on the act, although technically, the legality of cryptocurrency in the country is still in question.

We are still waiting for the expected flood of institutional investors, but steps are certainly being made. Whether their eventual arrival will be a positive thing is another question entirely.

What do you make of this latest Coinbase acquisition? Add your thoughts below!


Images via Shutterstock

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Srp 14

Facebook Covert Audio Sharing Casts Doubt Over Libra Privacy

Facebook used third-party contractors to listen to user audio without telling them, in a move which raises questions about the third-party sponsors of its libra cryptocurrency.


Facebook Shared Messages With Third Parties

As Bloomberg reported on August 13, Facebook confirmed it had used middleman firms to transcribe audio messages from its Messenger app. 

The practice, which the company says it halted just last week, only involved users who had given their permission for audio collection in the app’s settings. However, Facebook did not disclose the data would be sent to third parties. 

“Much like Apple and Google, we paused human review of audio more than a week ago,” an official told Bloomberg, which reported contractors involved felt their work constituted a moral dilemma. 

The latest privacy shock is pertinent for cryptocurrency fans watching developments of Facebook’s in-house token and financial platform, Libra. 

As Bitcoinist reported, the project, while yet to launch, has the backing of some of the tech world’s biggest – and on occasion most notorious – names.

Large corporations such as PayPal have agreed to stump up $10 million to run a node for Libra, with critics already warning that a future Libra user could have their financial freedom entirely controlled by those nodes.

“…If 10 of the 28 initial validators (eg. Paypal, Visa, Mastercard, eBay, Facebook, plus 5 others) agree in a closed-door meeting that they want to reject your Libra transactions, they have the power to do so because they prevent a two-third majority from validating them,” angel investor Marc Bevand summarized in a review of Libra in June. 

Libra’s Data Honey Pot

With freedom, however, comes concerns about data protection. A power-sharing agreement involving all the world’s tech and finance heavyweights could spell disaster in the event of data mismanagement – or simply provoke anger if similar methods to Facebook’s own data collection habits become commonplace.

Nonetheless, commentators from both within and beyond the crypto industry have identified positive improvements Libra poses over central bank fiat money.

“To be fair, Libra is still probably somewhat of an improvement over the current financial system,” Bevand continued. 

“Today Paypal can unilateraly (sic) freeze your Paypal account. While in Libra you need at least 1/3rd of Libra members to collude and block your payments.”

Arthur Hayes, CEO of crypto derivatives giant BitMEX, echoed that perspective last month, bluntly describing PayPal’s own model as “fucked.”

In a world where Libra is ubiuquitous, he said in an interview, “all a bank is relegated to is a dumb node that holds fiat currency in electronic form at a central bank.”

What do you think would be Facebook’s privacy practises under Libra? Let us know in the comments below!


Images via Shutterstock

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Srp 06

Bitcoin Market Cap Is Actually Over 75%, Says Asset Management Founder

Bitcoin in fact accounts for a much larger proportion of the overall cryptocurrency industry, a former Google and Facebook executive has claimed.


Bitcoin Market Cap Has Long Been over 60%

Presenting new figures on social media August 6, Avichal Garg, who now runs cryptocurrency asset management firm Electric Capital, said standard methods for measuring Bitcoin’s dominance were flawed. 

Resources which compute market cap, specifically CoinMarketCap, draw on thousands of cryptocurrencies, including those with no liquidity at all. This, he argues, makes them irrelevant to calculations and allows them to dilute Bitcoin’s true presence.

“True BTC market share is probably 75%+ and has likely been 60%+ for a long time,” he wrote. 

Coinmarketcap incorrectly calculates dominance using alts that have 0 liquidity. Most (though (definitely) not all!) projects are worth 0, which would put BTC dominance at 75%+

Bitcoin’s market cap currently circles $317 billion after a several-day bull run took the largest cryptocurrency over $12,000 once more. 

Dominance for Bitcoin, according to CoinMarketCap, is 68.5%, the highest the percentage has been since April 2017. 

While altcoins remain factored in, the landscape this year overwhelmingly favors Bitcoin investors, with multiple analysts warning that altcoin markets will no longer challenge Bitcoin in a meaningful way. 

BTC Realized Market Cap Hits New All-Time High

Garg’s calculations surface several weeks after another alternative metric for gauging market cap hit an all-time high of its own. 

As Bitcoinist reported, so-called ‘realized market cap’ reached a record $93 billion last month, and has since continued to fresh highs – currently at $97.8 billion

Realized market cap refers to the price at which a bitcoin last traded, along with how many coins moved in that trade. 

By multiplying those two values it generates a number which more accurately judges Bitcoin’s health, analysis from industry media resource Longhash said. 

Market cap is just one aspect of the Bitcoin network that been consistently breaking records in the 2019 bull market. As Bitcoinist noted, hashrate, difficulty, volume and more are all at highs which were unthinkable at the beginning of the year. 

Even temporary bearish sentiment sparked by US regulatory scrutiny failed to last, with BTC/USD bouncing back by over $2000 in a matter of days since the start of the weekend.

Trade war worries, coupled with wider economic uncertainty, fuelled the action which also resulted in improved performance for safe haven assets such as gold.

What do you think about Bitcoin’s market cap? Let us know in the comments below!


Images via Shutterstock, Longhash

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Čvc 26

Bitcoin Price Struggling To Stay Above $10,000

Another day has brought another movement in BTC markets and yet again it has been downwards. As bitcoin price battles to stay above $10,000, analysts are looking at new levels of support.


Bitcoin Bart Patterns Back

Yesterday’s bounce from $9,500 topped out at around $10,180, hitting the 200-hour moving average twice. A few hours ago the ‘Bart pattern’ materialized again as BTC plunged back down. Three large red candles resulted in a drop to $9,660 according to Tradingview. Bitcoin price is currently trading just above that at 00

bitcoin

BTC price one hour chart – Tradingview.com

The Bart pattern was not lost on crypto traders on twitter as one pointed out just before the dip.

The previous dip was just above $9,500 so BTC needs to hold above its current level or face further losses which could send it back to $9,200 today. Most are still of the opinion that further losses are likely as the downtrend remains intact. Crypto trader ‘BenjaminBlunts’ mapped out a possible scenario for the next couple of months which shows a dip deep into the $7,000 price range.

“Due to the deep decline off yesterday’s highs this next wave up more likely still a corrective flat and this is the scenario i have in mind for BTC, trading more or less sideways until august, but ultimately break down again. This scenario can still set the stage for alts though”

On the daily chart, the bitcoin price appears to be consolidating still just below the 50 day moving average. A retest of this would take BTC back to $10,200 but a decline eyes the $9,200 level.

Altcoins in Lemming Mode

As usual, the altcoins have blindly followed bitcoin’s lead as most of them are dumping today as well. The $10 billion that flowed into crypto markets yesterday has all been lost today as total capitalization slides back down to $270 billion once again. Daily volume has also now dropped below $50 billion as things cool down in crypto land.

The digital lemmings are mostly in the red this Friday morning. Ethereum has dumped 3% in a fall back to $215, Bitcoin SV is down a similar amount. The only altcoin in the green in the top twenty is Bitcoin Cash but it has only eked out 2% reaching $312.

Nano is today’s big mover and the only altcoin gaining double digits in the top one hundred. There are a few of the lower cap altcoins dumping doubles but there is very little movement for the majority of them at the moment.

Will bitcoin price fall back to $9k this weekend? Add your thoughts below.

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Čvc 21

Coinbase Bins Bundle Product as Altcoins Get REKT

After 8 months on the market, Coinbase binned its crypto-diversified Bundle product. Does this mean that the altseason is never coming back?


Coinbase Bins the Bundle

Altseason is over and nobody is quite sure when it’s coming back. Coinbase appears to have received the message, to the extent that the exchange binned its diversified crypto-bundle product. A quick view at the exchange’s updated FAQ reads: 

Coinbase Bundle purchases have been deprecated, as such all assets purchased in the Conibase Bundle have been redistributed to their respective individual asset wallets.

Coinbase Bundles were meant to provide crypto investors with a diversified digital asset portfolio that could be dollar-cost averaged following the same tactic investors use in traditional asset classes. Initially, investors could throw down $25 to purchase a bundle of five cryptocurrencies which were balanced in proportion to their market cap. 

Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Litecoin comprised each bundle. In combination with Coinbase Learn and Asset Pages, the bundles were meant to appeal to crypto newbies looking to dollar cost average into long positions without having to conduct an immense amount of technical analysis and research. 

When introduced in September 2018, Coinbase said: 

The vision of an open financial system depends on people’s ability to understand, explore, and choose cryptocurrencies. We expect that millions of people will make their first cryptocurrency purchase in the coming years. But all too often, getting started can be overwhelming for people learning about crypto for the first time.

It’s not Time for Crypto Diversification

While the product cancellation is bound to draw some criticism and possibly even pleasure from those who despise Coinbase, its is probably a wise move to bin the product as altcoins have been pummeled as Bitcoin rallied and corrected.

The crypto-sector is akin to a baby learning how to walk and each company will trial various products and adjust as necessary. The cancellation of Coinbase Bundle also adds credibility to the argument that diversification does not work for crypto yet as the sector remains too volatile at the moment. 

Do you think digital asset diversification is a successful investing strategy? Share your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images via Shutterstock

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Čvc 09

Bitcoin Price Rallies Towards $13,000 In Sudden 11% Surge

Just yesterday the Bitcoin price sentiment was starting to turn bearish as markets began to cool off. Many of the top analysts on crypto twitter had hinted at further losses as BTC posted lower highs. Today it has surged back in an epic 11% pump back towards $13,000.


Bitcoin Price Bears Bashed Again

BTC had been consolidating around $11,500 since recovering from its dip into four figures early last week. That range bound action finally broke during early Asian trading this morning when Bitcoin price broke through resistance and traded north of $12,000.

The king of crypto did not stay there and made a big push up to a new 13 day high of $12,880 according to Tradingview. It is the highest price Bitcoin has attained since June 27 when it slid down from that peak just $900 higher.

bitcoin

BTC price 1 hour chart – Tradingview.com

A new 2019 high could be imminent if Bitcoin price can close above the previous two daily candles at $12,950. Trader and analyst Josh Rager, who said yesterday’s weekly close was bearish, has changed his tune today as BTC continues to defy the markets.

“With lower-highs on the 4 hr chart, I’d look to lean bearish as we start the week”

“Fool me once, shame on you… Fool me twice, shame on me. No way was I shorting Bitcoin after a close under the resistance again. Not much stopping this train, just minor daily & weekly resistance left until new yearly highs.”

Altcoin Annihilation

Rager continued to comment on Bitcoin dominance which was approaching 67% at the time of writing.

“Bitcoin Dominance on its way above 66%. This is why you always keep a healthy percentage of your portfolio in Bitcoin especially in a bull market.”

It is the highest market share Bitcoin has had since December 2017 and those predominantly holding altcoins will be in a world of pain at the moment. Of the $26 billion that has entered the crypto markets over the past 24 hours, BTC is responsible for almost 85% of it.

The top three crypto assets after Bitcoin have not even gained 3 percent each. Even Litecoin, which is halving in just 27 days, has only managed a blip to get above $123. There are a number in the red at the moment including BNB, TRX, ADA, XMR, LEO, LINK and ATOM.

Many of those interviewed at the Taipei Blockchain event (link to Taipei article) were confident that altcoins would rally again soon but at the moment they are getting buried by their big brother. A new 2019 high could be imminent for BTC this week and after today’s move, all eyes are on $14,000.

Will Bitcoin price break resistance to hit a new yearly high? Add your thoughts below.

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Čvc 08

Bearish Weekly Close Could Create More ‘Buy Bitcoin’ Opportunities

Bitcoin and crypto markets have been mostly sideways over the weekend. There has been little movement in either direction for BTC and most of the high cap altcoins and all eyes have been on the close of the weekly candle.


Bitcoin Price Closes Below Resistance

The four hour chart has been showing lower highs for the past week or so however the range is tightening up which could lead to a possible breakout. With an intraday high of $11,700 and a low of $11,000 BTC remains range bound for now trading at 00.

bitcoin

BTC price 1 hour chart. Tradingview.com

Trader and analyst Josh Rager has been eyeing the charts for the next move and is leaning towards a bearish one following the close of the weekly candle.

“Bitcoin closed below the resistance while at the same time tapped the tippy top of the support near $9,614. With lower-highs on the 4 hr chart, I’d look to lean bearish as we start the week. But you know that you’d love to buy more BTC and crypto under $10k”

On the upside, any move below five figures may well trigger another ‘buy Bitcoin’ frenzy as we witnessed last week when BTC fell to $9,600 briefly.

Full-time trader and self-styled financial revolution prepper ‘Financial Survivalism’ has also hinted at a move to the downside and expects Bitcoin price to drop back into four figures this week.

“I’m expecting $BTC to return to 4 figures within the next 48 hours. Main reason is the high volume shooting star from last week.
Confirmation comes from the charts below:
1st weekly Stoch sell signal since Dec 17
Overbought W ADX
Bearish TK Cross on D cloud
4h Bear channel”

The sentiment appears to be spreading across CT this Monday morning as others echo the possible end of the rally.

“In the near term, I think upside on $BTC is limited. Likely the top is in for the next 3-4 months. Better to build some support first before the 6 fig moon mission.”

Altcoins In The Green

Not all is bearish during Asian trading this morning. A number of the altcoins are actually posting pretty good gains over the past 24 hours. Ethereum has made almost 6% taking it back over $300 again, and Tron is on a flyer surging 9% to retake a top ten place.

Monero is up a similar amount as XMR reaches $105 and Crypto.com Chain is in double digits this morning with an 11% pump. Total market capitalization has added $8 billion so maybe the altcoins could be starting to finally decouple from their commander at the top.

Will Bitcoin price drop back to four figures this week? Will there be favorable situations to buy more Bitcoin?Add your thoughts below.


Images via Shutterstock, Tradingview, Twitter: Josh Rager @Josh_Rager, Financial Survivalism@Sawcruhteez

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Čvc 05

Bitcoin Market Grew ‘Independently’ in Q2 2019: Binance Report

Correlation between the Bitcoin market and the altcoin market dipped in the second quarter of 2019, claims Binance.


The Malta-based cryptocurrency exchange pitted Bitcoin against thirty alternative cryptocurrencies to determine whether or not it moved in lockstep with them. The exchange noted that all the known altcoins were tailing the Bitcoin price trend positively in Q2/2019. Nevertheless, the speed at which they followed the leading cryptocurrency experienced a drop, implying that the altcoin market, as a whole, failed to run along with a supercharged Bitcoin price rally.

“Bitcoin (BTC) became less correlated with other crypto assets in Q2 2019 relative to the first three months of 2019,” read Binance. “Correlations declined between Bitcoin and altcoins, with a decrease in the average correlation of -0.11.”

In retrospective, a perfect positive correlation between two assets reflects their 100% probability of moving in the same direction. Conversely, a negative one means that the two would always run in the opposite direction. Assets with a correlation score above 0.5 show positive correlations between the two, while a score below -0.5 exhibits negative associations.

bitcoin, bitcoin price

Bitcoin Dips against Altcoins in Terms of Correlation | Image Credits: Binance Research

Binance noted that Ethereum came closest to Bitcoin with a 0.81 positive correlation in Q2/2019, down from 0.889 of the previous quarter. Similarly, the XRP-to-Bitcoin correlation dropped from 0.875 in Q2/2019 to 0.69 in Q1/2019. The statistics appeared the same across the rest of the cryptocurrencies, including Litecoin, MIOTA, EOS, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin SV, and others.

Flight to Quality

The said dip appeared in line with the Bitcoin’s growing dominance in the cryptocurrency market. The leading cryptocurrency mousetrapped more than 63 percent of the total market valuation, leaving other digital assets with a fractional influence. Binance called it a “flight-to-quality behavior,” a term which indicates investors’ partiality towards what they believe is the most bullish asset. Excerpts from the report:

“The overall market capitalization rose by 139%, whereas altcoin aggregated market capitalization (including stablecoins) increased by “just” 71 percent over the same period. This can likely be attributed to a “flight-to-quality” behavior by crypto investors in an early bull-market state.”

The statistics closely followed the findings of Gabor Gurbacs of VanEck. The digital asset director noted that Bitcoin had left all the blue chips (a basket of top ten cryptocurrencies) and smaller cap coins (another pool of top 100 cryptocurrencies) behind in the previous 12 months in terms of returns, as shown in his tweet below:

Although the Blue Chips (Ticker: MVDA10) recorded a lesser loss compared to the Small Caps (Ticker: MVDASC), a closer look reveals that Bitcoin had more than 33 percent dominance in the former.

Bitcoin Remains the King Cryptocurrency

The Binance report reflected a shift in crypto investors’ mindset. They considered Bitcoin safer than most of the alternatives available inside — and also outside — the cryptocurrency industry.

“The report could help in assessing whether today’s crypto-market environment behaves similarly to historical early stages of bullish environments in traditional financial markets,” Binance concluded.

What do you think about Bitcoin’s YTD performance? Let us know in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock, Binance Research, Gabor Gurbacs

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Čvc 05

Bitcoin Price Begins Consolidation; Markets Cooling Down

As the parties wind down in the US and the impending hangovers begin to fester, Bitcoin is taking a breather. In what appears to be the beginning of a consolidation phase, BTC has dropped around 8% on the day.


Bitcoin Price Falls Back To $11000

The epic 25% bounce back from the depths of $9,600 took Bitcoin price to $12000 briefly yesterday. For the duration of the fourth, it managed to consolidate around $11,800 but has fallen sharply a few hours ago. The latest dip has returned BTC back to $11k, and it is currently holding just above there at 00.

bitcoin

BTC price 1-hour chart – Tradingview.com

Daily volume has retreated back to $25 billion and BTC market capitalization has just dipped below $200 billion again. As Bitcoinist reported earlier this week, BTC may have found a new floor at around $10,000 but a drop below this could signal a deeper dip than the previous one, possibly somewhere back in the $8k region.

The CT traders seem to have taken the day off for the US holiday and things are pretty quiet in crypto land at the moment. Looking at next levels of support, the 50-day moving average is currently at $9,200 so this may serve as the next lower low if BTC heads south again.

On the four-hour chart, Bitcoin price has already dropped below the 50 MA and could head towards the 200 which is currently at $9,600. As in previous cycles, there was a lot of buying pressure at four figures but this may not be of the same magnitude if BTC drops below $10k again.

CNBC, which often serves as a counter trade signal, seems to be bullish on Bitcoin however with this rather festive tweet posted a few hours ago.

Altcoins Getting Battered Again

Total crypto market capitalization has dumped over $15 billion on the day but Bitcoin dominance remains over 65% according to Tradingview.com. Yet again the altcoins, which are already in bad shape, are getting battered.

Ethereum has dumped 5% to return to $285 and XRP has shed a similar amount falling back to $0.387. Litecoin is holding $120 at the moment but Bitcoin Cash and EOS are both down 4%. There is a lot of red on the altcoin markets during Asian trading this morning and only a handful of the very low cap ones are making any progress.

The weekend may see more consolidation from Bitcoin which appears to result in a dump in the altcoins. It might be time for the daddy of crypto to take a breather for a bit.

Will Bitcoin price make another lower low or remain here for a while? Add your thoughts below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, , Tradingview

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Čvn 25

Bitcoin Price Surge Dampens Altcoin Rally Hopes

There has been no Monday correction for Bitcoin this week as the top cryptocurrency has held on to its weekend gains. With market dominance, a touch under 60% many traders and crypto aficionados are beginning to wonder if the altcoins will ever recover.


Bitcoin Price Holding Steady Above $11000

Bitcoin is back at its 2019 high of just over $11,200 at the moment. It has spent most of the past day consolidating around $10,800 but started heading north again during the morning’s Asian trading session. Since the same time, last week BTC has made a solid 20% and has shown no signs of slowing down.

crypto

Bitcoin price 1 hour candles – Tradingview.com

There is a lot of resistance in the $11,700 region but that has not thwarted Bitcoin previously. A correction right now would be healthy though as parabolic charts are not. That thirty percent plus chart move that many have speculated about would drop BTC from its current high back to around $7,800. At this level or lower, there is likely to be a lot more accumulation before the next leg up.

Remember 2017? When Altseason?

Many traders on Crypto Twitter are starting to express concern about the performance, or lack of, for most of the altcoins. While some such as Litecoin have done extremely well the majority still appear to be frozen over from crypto winter. An earlier tweet by blockchain entrepreneur ‘The Crypto King’ served as a reminder from 2017.

“All the focus is on BTC… did everyone forget 2017?
BTC pumps. BTC Stagnates.
Alts go absolutely bananas.
Altseason 2.0 Tik Tok.”

This sentiment has been echoed by crypto trader ‘Moon Overlord’ who has also looked back at patterns in late 2017 when altseason took off.

“The altcoin sentiment feels eerily similar to mid to late 2017. Bitcoin just went up and up and $ALTS got smoked. Then all of the sudden WHAM, a few alts lead the way and they started going 50, 100X out of nowhere. I suspect this time will be no different, you won’t get a warning,”

It is true that many of the top performing altcoins from 2017 have done very little in 2019. Big pump coins such as Cardano and Stellar have now been dumped out of the top ten and are still down from ATH by 91% and 85% respectively. Other previously high performing altcoins such as IOTA, NEO, OmiseGO, ICON, Qtum, Lisk, VeChain and 0x are still battered and bruised showing very little sign of recovery.

Many have speculated that a lot of 2017’s tokens will fade away and be usurped by new offerings this year but at the moment Bitcoin is still dominating markets and an altcoin season has yet to begin.

Will Bitcoin give altcoins a chance to move higher? Let us know what you think in the comments below. 


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