Connect with us

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin Hard Fork: The Game Plan

Published

on

Bitcoin’s upcoming fork is arguably its most divisive one yet. Clear battle lines have been drawn, setting the stage for a potentially Lutheran-style schism in the blockchain community. (Note: the author is being a bit dramatic, but all signs seem to show that a serious divergence is building momentum.)

By looking at bitcoin’s price, one would hardly conclude that the original blockchain currency is facing turmoil. Bitcoin added a staggering 24% last week en route to fresh record highs. However, one of the motivations for buying bitcoin is the hard fork itself. If you own bitcoin on fork day, you will also receive equal value of the newly minted digital currency. (If your cryptocurrency exchange doesn’t support the new coin, you can always threaten to sue it like the backers of Bitcoin Cash did to Coinbase.)

SegWit2x

The upcoming hard fork, which is scheduled sometime in mid-November, will create two competing versions of bitcoin. We speculated recently that the new coin is unlikely to create controversy over the “real” bitcoin, but as Jeff John Roberts of Fortune argues, this disagreement is already under way.

Like the hard forks before it, the main crux of the debate is how to best optimize the Bitcoin network. Backers of SegWit2x want to double the size of bitcoin blocks to boost transaction capability.

Backers of the new protocol include bitcoin miners who use advanced computers to compile transactions. In their view, bigger blocks are desperately needed to accommodate the massive growth in the blockchain network, as well as to reduce transaction fees. As Roberts also notes, these miners are part of a consortia that includes “certain exchanges, wallet providers, market makers, and storage vaults.” On the opposite side of the spectrum are those who maintain the core protocol that comprises the Bitcoin network.

Below is a rundown of interplay between bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and the upcoming SegWit2X hard fork.

Bitcoin (BTC) SegWit Activated No Increase in Block Size
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) No SegWit Activated Increased Block Size to 8MB
SegWi2x (B2X) SegWit Activated Increase Block Size

The Game Plan

As one might expect, the broader implications of SegWit2x likely won’t be known until fork day. But that shouldn’t stop you from formulating a game plan. The big question mark right now is which version of bitcoin will get the much coveted BTC ticker name. As it currently stands, exchanges have not opined about which version of bitcoin they will support, although Bitfinex will run the SegWit2x chain as B2X.

On the GDAX, hash power will decide which chain gets the BTC ticker. So far, there is no news on what Bitstamp, bitFlyer and Kraken aim to do.

Rather than track a couple dozen bitcoin exchanges, investors may want to focus on Coinbase. The San Francisco-based platform has long been viewed as the industry’s proxy; how it chooses to handle the fork (and potential split) will have direct implications on the market.

A hard fork is a software change that runs the risk of splitting the blockchain into two, particularly if the community disagrees about it. (Laura Shin, Forbes)

When it comes time to fork, market participants need to be clear about their intentions. The first question you need to ask is: Do I plan on transacting with the various bitcoin chains anytime soon, or am I keen on holding the coins as long-term investments? If you prefer the latter, then you should be thinking about storing your coins in a wallet. (Note: paper and hardware wallets offer more security.)

Those of us who are speculating in bitcoin need to be aware that the upcoming fork could get very messy. It is unclear which chain the exchanges will list as BTC, which means the price of BTC could differ vastly across the brokerage community. (Note: if you observe vastly different prices for BTC, it means you’re looking at two different coins.)

Adding more confusion is the fact that the SegWit2x protocol will fork without adequate replay protection. This means BTC and B2X transactions will appear identical after the fork. To avoid accidentally spending the new coins, you should avoid exchanging from your wallet all together after the fork. This also includes not accepting payments via mobile wallets, since BTC will mirror whichever coin has more hash power.

Furthermore, claiming your coins will prove difficult until well after the fork when dedicated wallets for both blockchains emerge.

If you’re a trader, there’s even more confusion about whether BTC and B2X will have any price correlation. Following the Bitcoin Cash hard fork, BTH and BTC appeared to be inversely correlated for a while. However, lately, anything named bitcoin has moved in the same direction: Up.

The conclusions that we’ve drawn in this section may annoy some of our members, but complex situations usually call for measured steps. In this case, staying on the sidelines until the dust settles might be the best approach.

Altcoin Advantage?

Altcoins have largely benefited from bitcoin’s meteoric rise – that is, until recently. The latest surge in bitcoin has largely failed to take altcoins along for the ride. This has led to speculation that the altcoin universe is undervalued. An exit from the bitcoin asset class could therefore be a tailwind for altcoins pre- and post-fork.

Currently, the original bitcoin controls roughly 63% of the cryptocurrency market. This figure fell below half earlier in the year as investors diversified away from bitcoin while others became more annoyed by bitcoin’s slow transaction process. If diversification is part of your strategy, now might be the top to consider altcoins. The author sees no reason why the altcoin universe cannot control at least half of the cryptocurrency market, especially if we witness a long-anticipated correction in BTC.

Total Cryptocurrency Market Cap With Bitcoin

Total Cryptocurrency Market Cap Without Bitcoin

 

Final Considerations

There’s no guarantee that bitcoin prices will plunge after the hard fork. Regardless of which blockchain emerges as the BTC candidate, bitcoin is enjoying plenty of upside thanks to growing institutional support from the major exchanges. Both CME Group and CBOE have announced plans for bitcoin futures relatively shortly. a strong sign that institutional capital will flow like never before.

To recap:

  1. Secure your coins in a paper or hard wallet for extra safety.
  2. Avoid transacting the BTC symbol before and after fork day.
  3. After fork day, access your coins only when you see dedicated wallets for both blockchains.
  4. Take advantage of the undervalued altcoin universe if bitcoin becomes volatile.

As fork day looms, keep your wits (and coins) about you and stay out of trouble.

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.

Rate this post:

Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way.
0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5 (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.
Loading...

4.6 stars on average, based on 649 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he leads content development for one of the world's foremost cryptocurrency resources. Over the past eight years Sam has authored more than 10,000 articles and over 40 whitepapers in the fields of labor market economics, emerging technologies, cryptocurrency and traditional finance. Sam's work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Contact: sam@hacked.com Twitter: @hsbourgi




Feedback or Requests?

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. benb

    November 5, 2017 at 10:25 pm

    Well written, thank you for the write up. Do you think the exchanges will still allow trading while the wallets are locked for deposits and withdrawals?

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Altcoins

Investors Reward Nexo for Adding XRP-Backed Loans

Published

on

Crypto-backed lending startup Nexo is being rewarded by investors for adding loans collateralized by the third biggest cryptocurrency XRP. The company made the announcement in a blog post, saying support for XRP was in response to demand stemming from the blockchain community.

NEXO advanced by double-digits in today’s mixed crypto market before trimming those gains somewhat. Investors may have sensed an announcement was on the horizon, as Nexo, which boasts a market cap of $76.5 million, has been on a tear in October and has seen its value increase by more than one-third for the week and 160% over the last 30 days. Most of today’s trading is unfolding on Hotbit in the ETH and BTC markets. Despite the recent gains, the NEXO price, which is currently hovering at $0.13, has not gone unscathed in this year’s market downturn and traded as high as $0.40 in May 2018.

Source: CoinMarketCap

Competitive Landscape

According to Nexo in the blog post –

“Nexo continues to push the boundaries within the crypto-lending space by becoming the first lender ever to start accepting XRP as collateral for crypto loans.”

XRP, which is majority- owned by Ripple, is a popular choice and it joins a list of nearly two-dozen cryptocurrencies supported by Nexo including bitcoin, Ethereum, Zcash and many more. The XRP price, meanwhile, is currently down 2% to $0.45 with a market cap of $18 billion, more than $2 billion below No. 2 cryptocurrency Ethereum. Last month, the XRP price added 70% to its value, but October hasn’t been as kind.

In addition to XRP, Nexo also revealed a partnership with Goldman Sachs-backed Circle’s new platform CENTRE, announcing plans to offer loans backed by the new USD-backed cryptocurrency USD//Coin (USDC). Earlier this month, when Tether fell out of favor with investors, Nexo said it was exploring the addition of more stablecoins, adding that it has “never held significant amounts of Tether (USDT) on its balance sheet.”

Investors have proven to reward lenders for the expansion of the platform into new coins. Last week, rival crypto-backed lender SALT Lending (SALT) announced its support for loans collateralized by one of this year’s best performers, Dogecoin (DOGE). Since then, SALT coin has risen more than 30%. Crypto-backed lender BlockFi, meanwhile, issues loans backed by Gemini Trust’s recently launched stablecoin Gemini Dollar (GUSD).

Blockchain startups aren’t afraid to tease upcoming announcements, giving traders the opportunity to be in a position to potentially benefit from the news. Binance CEO CZ tweeted today on the heels of the exchange’s expansion into Uganda that he’s “got one more piece of good news coming soon,” which he pointed out generated more “likes” than the Uganda tweet.

As year-end approaches, the total value of the cryptocurrency market is currently below $210 billion.

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.

Rate this post:

Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way.
0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5 (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.
Loading...

4.6 stars on average, based on 69 rated postsGerelyn has been covering ICOs and the cryptocurrency market since mid-2017. She's also reported on fintech more broadly in addition to asset management, having previously specialized in institutional investing. She owns some BTC and ETH.




Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Altcoins

Monero Price Stabilizes as Transaction Fees Plummet

Published

on

Monero’s XMR currency has flat-lined over the past week, ebbing in the direction of the general market following the successful implementation of Bulletproofs. The upgrade, which was initiated four days ago, has given XMR a unique advantage in terms of transaction costs.

XMR/USD Update

From a price perspective, XMR has exhibited very little fluctuation over the past 24 hours. The digital currency is currently trading hands at $105.48, were it was down only slightly compared with the previous session. Likewise, the XMR price is little changed over the past seven days. Over that period, XMR’s peak-to-trough was $108.33-$102.22, according to CoinMarketCap.

At present values, Monero has a total value of $1.7 billion, placing it in the no. 10 spot on the active market-cap rankings. Its market value is three times higher than Zcash, another leading privacy coin.

XMR trade volumes averaged a little more than $14 million on Monday, with won-denominated transactions on Bithumb accounting for the vast majority of the daily turnover. The South Korean exchange processed nearly 92% of XMR’s exchange-traded volume, according to CoinMarketCap.

Monero Transaction Costs Plummet

Monero’s latest hard fork on Oct. 18 has given the blockchain a significant advantage from the perspective of cost, according to CoinMetrics, which recently commented on the massive drop in XMR transaction fees. Users of the privacy coin are now paying just 2 cents per transaction, a decline of 97% since the implementation of Bulletproofs. The sharp drop in transaction fees is accomplished by shrinking the overall size of cryptographic proofs and the amount of disk storage space required to execute a transaction.

The hard fork, officially known as Monero 0.13 Beryllium Bullet, adds a new layer of protection for XMR transactions. This includes trustless, non-interactive, zero-knowledge specifications that will completely mask transactions from the public blockchain. The hard fork was implemented on block 1685555, with the new Bulletproofs software executed on block 1686275.

The new specifications not only boost Monero’s credibility as the premiere privacy coin on the market, they work against the growing risk of network centralization. That’s because the new protocol offers greater resistance to corporate ASIC miners, which the community views as a major obstacle to decentralization. Miners have already reported a sharp drop in mining difficulty as a result of the fork, ensuring smaller players have the opportunity to contribute to the network.

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.

Rate this post:

Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way.
0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5 (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.
Loading...

4.6 stars on average, based on 649 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he leads content development for one of the world's foremost cryptocurrency resources. Over the past eight years Sam has authored more than 10,000 articles and over 40 whitepapers in the fields of labor market economics, emerging technologies, cryptocurrency and traditional finance. Sam's work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Contact: sam@hacked.com Twitter: @hsbourgi




Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Altcoins

Bitcoin Cash Price Analysis: BCH/USD Bulls Have the Potential to Capitalize, Following a Bullish Technical Set Up

Published

on

  • BCH/USD broke out and retested a long-running descending trend line, but has failed to capitalize on this further.
  • George Hotz, also known as Geohot, says “Bitcoin Cash is the real Bitcoin.”
  • CoinText.io expands its Bitcoin Cash payment SMS service to Brazil and further European countries. 

“Bitcoin Cash is the Real Bitcoin”

George Hotz, also known as Geohot, an American entrepreneur and hacker, was recently commenting on Bitcoin Cash. Following the BCH Devcon in San Francisco he attended, Geohot demonstrated how to generate a BCH private key from scratch using python coding.

During his python video, George spoke highly of Bitcoin Cash. He said, “I’m using Bitcoin Cash because it’s the real bitcoin.” His reasoning for the preference of BCH over BTC was due to it having significantly lower transaction fees. Stating, “Transaction fees are super low on bitcoin cash.”

Bitcoin Cash Being Used in Brazil with CoinText.io

SMS cryptocurrency payment service, CoinText, has launched their services in Brazil and three other European countries – Poland, Romania and Croatia. CoinText doesn’t require apps, logins or Internet, and users can send Bitcoin Cash via SMS. A new wallet is automatically created when people have received Bitcoin Cash via SMS.

Specifically commenting on the Brazilian expansion, CoinText founder and CTO said, “Brazilians have been suffering from corruption and bad monetary policy,” says CoinText founder and CTO Vin Armani. “Cryptocurrency offers a way for them to peacefully opt out of a corrupt system.”

A move in which is further helping the adoption of Bitcoin Cash, via the CoinText service, he further noted, “Adding Poland, Croatia and Romania brings us closer to connecting the entire continent of Europe,” Armani added. “CoinText’s end-of-year goal is to enable all 740 million European residents to text money to each other’s phones for pennies.”

Technical Review – Daily Chart

BCH/USD daily chart

BCH/USD price action of late has been very much mundane following a promising breakout from a long-running descending trend line. It had been contained below and rejected on several occasions, from the back end of July. Bulls managed to pull off a decent breakout to the upside, which took place between 26-27th September.

After observing the break above, then pullback for a retest of the breached trend line, it looked very promising. This as such played out to the textbook, however bulls failed to capitalize and drive further north. Instead, the price remained within a consolidation nature, a lack of commitment in either direction. Perhaps the bulls are sitting on the launchpad, ready to send this into orbit, time will tell here.

Looking at technical areas of interest, to the upside, resistance has capped upside well into $500 territory. Tracking from $455-80, which has been evident the past few sessions. A firm push higher, will allow $550 region to come back into play. In terms of buyers, they can be found from the current price, all the way down to $400 the round figure.

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.

Rate this post:

Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way.
0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5 (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.
Loading...

4.5 stars on average, based on 33 rated postsKen has over 8 years exposure to the financial markets. During a large part of his career, he worked as an analyst, covering a variety of asset classes; forex, fixed income, commodities, equities and cryptocurrencies. Ken has gone on to become a regular contributor across several large news and analysis outlets.




Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

A part of CCN

Hacked.com is Neutral and Unbiased

Hacked.com and its team members have pledged to reject any form of advertisement or sponsorships from 3rd parties. We will always be neutral and we strive towards a fully unbiased view on all topics. Whenever an author has a conflicting interest, that should be clearly stated in the post itself with a disclaimer. If you suspect that one of our team members are biased, please notify me immediately at jonas.borchgrevink(at)hacked.com.

Trending