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$80 Billion Exits Crypto Market Amid South Korean Jitters, but Seoul Is Not Banning Cryptocurrency

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Headlines about a ‘pending ban’ on cryptocurrency trading in South Korea triggered a mass exodus from the asset class on Thursday, with roughly $80 billion flowing out of the market. Of course, the East Asian country has not actually banned crypto exchanges, but is considering a host of measures to stamp out anonymous trading.

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Not So Fast

Reuters brought some much needed clarity to the situation early Thursday in an article that cited a spokesperson at the presidential office.

“Justice Minister Park’s comments related to shutdown of cryptocurrency exchanges is one of the measures prepared by the Ministry of Justice, but it’s not a measure that has been finalized,” the person said.

Several news outlets had earlier implied that the decision was already made, and that Seoul was getting ready to ban all domestic crypto exchanges. New proposed legislation in South Korea seeks to ban anonymous accounts and prevent financial institutions from settling transactions for unidentified cryptocurrency trades. That’s very different from a blanket ban on cryptocurrency trading.

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The central government in Seoul also warned that the digital asset class could be “vulnerable to the damage from investment fraud or hacking attacks on the exchanges.”

Local media outlet Yonhap News agency also provided more clarity on the matter:

“Under the new measure, only real-name bank accounts and matching accounts at cryptocurrency exchanges can be used for deposits and withdrawals, while the issuance of new virtual accounts to cryptocurrency exchanges will be banned.”

Crypto Market Declines

Although South Korea has not implemented anything as harsh as some media outlets have reported, investors clicked the panic button on Thursday, resulting in a brisk selloff of most major coins. At the time of writing, only five of the top 100 virtual currencies had were trading neutral or positive, according to data provider CoinMarketCap.

The majority of coins in the top 100 were down double digits, sending the total market cap to as low as $626 billion. At the start of trading Thursday, the total market cap of all coins was nearly $735 billion.

At press time, the total market cap was roughly $656 billion.

Bitcoin was off more than 10%, while Ethereum and bitcoin cash each fell more than 12%. Other big losers included Cardano, Litecoin, IOTA and Tron, each of which declined more than 12% (all figures according to CoinMarketCap).

Naturally, investors have something to fret about when South Korean regulation is in the headlines. The country has quickly emerged as a major force in the cryptocurrency market, and is responsible for a huge percentage of daily trade volumes. That being said, many crypto traders feel the need to navigate away from mainstream media sources when it comes to crypto news.

Litecoin founder Charlie Lee poked fun at mainstream media’s tendency to exaggerate the perils of cryptocurrency in a tweet earlier in the day:

“Korea bans Bitcoin FUD is the new China bans Bitcoin FUD.”

FUD stands for fear, uncertainty and doubt.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 161 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts.




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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Parentesi

    January 12, 2018 at 4:13 am

    Just keep cool. Since China “Banned” Exchanges, I think the overall Market-Cap went times 4, from the peak of about 170 Billion to almost 800. Nothing will stop this. HODL

  2. snow4me

    January 16, 2018 at 4:17 am

    what is the authors opinion on Kucoin and COSS?

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Altcoins

Cryptocurrency Market Enters Corrective Phase as Majors Retreat from Recent Highs

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The cryptocurrency market declined across the board Thursday, as bitcoin, Ethereum and the rest of the major altcoins retreated from recent highs.

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Crypto Market Backpedals

After peaking above $518 billion on Saturday, the market capitalization for all cryptocurrencies has fallen to $469 billion, based on latest data from CoinMarketCap. That represents a decline of more than 9%. Trade volume across all digital assets approached $24 billion over the past 24 hours.

The latest drop in total coin value seems to have coincided with broader uptake in bitcoin, the world’s most popular cryptocurrency both in terms of market cap and trade volume. Bitcoin now accounts for more than 39% of the total market,  a near seven-point increase over last month’s lows.

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Bitcoin made a strong move above $11,000 on Wednesday, eventually hitting a three-week high of $11,329. As we wrote Wednesday, bitcoin in particular seems to be benefiting from a myriad of market forces ranging from favorable regulations to improved investor sentiment.

At the time of writing, the cryptocurrency was worth $10,901.

Other major cryptos were also down at the start of Thursday trading, with Ethereum slipping 3.6% to $864.83. Ripple’s XRP token declined 2.7% to $1.04, while bitcoin cash fell 4.3% to $1,336.50.

Even Litecoin, a currency that has witnessed a 50% surge this week, fell more than 3% to $219.43.

Paul Singer Calls Cryptocurrencies a Huge Scam

Elliot Management, a multi-billion-dollar hedge fund headed by Paul Singer, recently came out with a report calling cryptocurrencies “one of the most brilliant scams in history.” It added that “FOMO (fear of missing out) has solidly trumped WTHIT (what the hell is this??).”

In the cryptocurrency world, talk is incredibly cheap, and arguments from authority don’t hold much credence. Although Elliott dedicated three pages to cryptocurrencies, there doesn’t seem to be a strong argument against cryptocurrencies. (Calling cryptos “nothing except the marketing power of inventors, financiers and others who love the idea of buying a black box…” is not an argument.)

That being said, the fund’s comments may have resonated with speculators who are already on the fence about re-entering the market. After all, the daily news headlines play a huge role in shaping investor sentiment, regardless of whether those headlines are true. This has been demonstrated time and time again by regulatory developments in nations such as South Korea and India.

As Singer’s comments clearly show, there’s still plenty of FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) driving the cryptocurrency market. This is unlikely to change soon even as bitcoin and the technology that underlies it enjoys greater mainstream adoption.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 161 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts.




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Analysis

Technical Analysis: Altcoins Lead Markets Lower as Bitcoin Still Looks Strong

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All of the largest digital currencies are in the red today, following heavy overnight selling, a bounce in European trading, and another round of losses around the US market open. Ethereum is still in the worst short-term shape among the giants of the segment, and that’s in line with the slightly delayed cycle of the coin that we have been monitoring.

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The technical divergence between the leaders of the market and the laggards yesterday is still dominant with the 6 coins that spearhead the rally, BTC, LTC, NEO, Dash, Monero, and ETC, are still in much more bullish setups than the rest of the majors.

Bitcoin is also well below its recent rally highs after breaking down under the key $11,300 level, and a test of the $10,000 support now looks likely, while a move to the $9000-$9200 zone would still keep the rising trend intact.


BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

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The overbought short-term momentum readings are being cleared, and despite the slightly bearish volume patterns, we expect the coin to continue its new bullish cycle after the correction, with targets above $11,300 ahead at $13,000 and $14,250.

ETH/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Ethereum is now trading below the key $845 level as the correction continues, as we expected, and the coin remains stuck in the dominant declining trend, for now. We still expect a breakout in the coming weeks, but a test of the $740 level is possible before another rally. Further support below that is at $625 and $575 and we don’t expect a new low in the coin, so investors could still accumulate the coin near the main levels.

(more…)

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.7 stars on average, based on 107 rated postsTrader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.




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Analysis

Crypto Update: Monero Tests Rally High as Majors Pull Back

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The segment had a bearish Asian session, as a wave of selling hit the major coins following the US close that carried the market more than 5% lower. The still present short-term overbought readings that we noted yesterday likely played a part in the move, as the strong post-crash rally made the market slightly stretched.

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As the coins followed stocks lower during the volatility-driven crash two weeks ago, yesterday’s late-day decline on Wall Street might also have driven the dip in the segment. Amid the decline, several coins are showing relative strength, most notably Monero and Dash, which already have been in encouraging setups.

BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

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Bitcoin is hovering around the $11,000 level today in European trading, with the $11,300 support/resistance level being in focus. The short-term momentum indicators still not reached neutral territory and that might mean that further consolidation is ahead for the most valuable currency. Support below is found at $10,000 and between $9000 and $9200, while resistance is still ahead at $13,000.

Monero remains one of the strongest candidates for another leg higher in the coming days, as the coin quickly recovered from the overnight sell-off and it is still trading back in the short-term consolidation pattern, below the $335 resistance that it tested already today. With the coin clearly being in an uptrend, a rally towards $400 is likely in the coming weeks, while support levels are at $300, $280, and $240.

XMR/USDT, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Losses Across the Board among Altcoins

DASH/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Not surprisingly, Litecoin, NEO, and Dash continue to outperform the broader market from a technical perspective, as correlations remain muted, still pointing to an intact short-term uptrend. ETC, the early leader of the rally is also holding up above the previous consolidation zone, with the $32-$34 zone also providing support for the coin.

Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Cardano, EOS, and IOTA are still the laggards among the majors, as they continue to trade in the short-term correction that started last week. That said, the price action in the segment is still consistent with a new bullish cycle, and we expect the crucial support levels to hold.

Stay tuned for our detailed technical analysis later on today.

Featured image from Shutterstock

Disclaimer:  The analyst owns cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but doesn’t engage in short-term or day-trading, nor does he hold short positions on any of the coins.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.7 stars on average, based on 107 rated postsTrader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.




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