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Cryptocurrencies Plunge $23 Billion as Consensus Summit Fails to Provide a Boost

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Cryptocurrency prices slumped further into the red on Wednesday after a high-profile blockchain summit failed to spark a sustained recovery.

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Crypto Prices Sink

Measured by market capitalization, cryptocurrencies are down roughly $23 billion on Wednesday.

The combined value of all currencies is currently hovering around $380.4 billion, according to data provider CoinMarketCap. Market valued had peaked above $411 billion on Tuesday. Daily trade volumes came in at $21 billion, based on a 24-hour window.

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Bitcoin’s share of the decline was smaller relative to its altcoin peers. The value of BTC fell 4.3% to $8,341, though its share of the total market climbed back above 37%.

Within the top-ten, EOS was the worst performer percentage-wise, falling 11.3% to $12.52.

Bitcoin cash plunged 9.2% to $1,288.20 after a hard fork upgrade increased the protocol’s block size to 32MB from 8MB. The hard fork was initiated through the Median Time Past (MTP) methodology, meaning it went live on the next block following the MTP timestamp of 1526400000.

Ethereum prices were down nearly 5% at $694.15. Ripple’s XRP currency also fell 8% to $0.681.

Consensus 2018 Drawing to a Close

Bitcoin and other digital assets began the week on a positive note as Consensus 2018 drew thousands of blockchain enthusiasts to New York.  The three day event, which began Monday, has been a major boon to cryptocurrency prices the last three years. For example, bitcoin prices surged between 10% and 69% during the last three Consensus conferences.

However, prices this week have failed to keep up with the historical trend, with bitcoin values barely treading water since the conference began. Analysts, including Tom Lee of Fundstrat Global Advisors, had predicted huge price gains on the heels of Consensus 2018.

“We expect the Consensus rally to be even larger than past years,” Lee said in a note to clients ahead of the conference, which concludes on Wednesday.

Though the event has failed to live up to its hype from a price perspective, it’s important to bear in mind that the vast majority of “post-Consensus” gains occur long after the summit has taken place. In fact, the bulk of the rally is usually generated over a two-month period after the conference.

The sharp drop in market prices may partially reflect overhang from last week’s raid of Upbit, one of South Korea’s largest digital currency exchanges. The exchange was apparently cleared of any wrong doing Tuesday after local accounting firm Yoojin found no evidence of fraud following its audit of the firm. Regulators and local police are expected to conclude their investigation this week.

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 406 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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Altcoins

As Gemini Embraces Zcash, Japan’s Coincheck Delists Privacy Coins

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Japanese crypto exchange Coincheck has announced it will remove privacy coins from its trading platform in the wake of a “drastic review” of its internal controls. The decision paints privacy coins like Zcash in a negative light vis-a-vis consumer protection and stability.

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Coincheck to De-List Privacy Coins

Beginning next month, trading of Zcash (ZEC), Monero (XMR) and Dash (DASH) will no longer be possible for Coincheck users, according to a recent statement issued by the firm. The so-called privacy coins are being removed as part of a “new management strategy that thoroughly protects customers.”

Traders have until June 18 to withdraw their coins or risk having them converted to yen at market price. According to CCN, Augur coin (REP) will also be de-listed due to its association with online gambling.

Rumors have circulated for months about Coincheck’s plans to de-list anonymous cryptocurrencies in the wake of a high-profile cyber heist in January. The attack, which targeted $530 million worth of NEM tokens, resulted in a sweeping review of domestic cryptocurrency exchanges by Japanese regulators.

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Coincheck may not be the last Japanese exchange to de-list anonymous coins. Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) is said to be encouraging other domestic exchanges to do the same.

The Coincheck platform has since been acquired by Monex Group, one of Japan’s largest online exchanges. The purchase allows Monex to rehabilitate the troubled exchange following a disastrous PR campaign.

Privacy Coins: An Opportunity and a Challenge

Though privacy coins had nothing to do with the Coincheck heist, regulators have made a causal link between anonymity and criminality when it comes to cryptocurrency. Pressure from regulators could force more exchanges to de-list privacy coins to avoid further complication down the road.

Debate over privacy coins extends far beyond the currency and into the realm of politics and philosophy. Banks and governments have a vested interest in keeping anonymous currencies in check. On the opposite side of the spectrum, privacy advocates like Edward Snowden argue that anonymous coins are the future of trade regardless of whether criminals take advantage of them.

Research carried out by the University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Jeffrey Quesnelle concluded that Zcash had no major vulnerabilities when it comes to privacy. This has been confirmed by other privacy specialists who say ZEC is the most anonymous privacy coin of all. That’s because it employs zero-knowledge proofs as well as enhanced encryption techniques that completely obscure the sender’s address. This is in contrast to other privacy-focused protocols, which generate fake addresses to hide the sender’s identity.

The U.S.-based Gemini exchange recently announced it had gained regulatory approval to begin listing Zcash. Deposits in ZEC were enabled on Saturday with full trading support expected to be launched on Tuesday.

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 406 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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Altcoins

Cryptocurrencies Rebound 8% from Recent Low as Tom Lee Gives Post-Consensus Takeaways

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Cryptocurrenc prices have begun the week on a positive note, as bullish sentiment returned to the market following an underwhelming reaction to the Consensus blockchain summit.

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Crypto Prices Rally

Bitcoin and the broader altcoin universe booked solid gains Monday. The combined value of all cryptocurrencies peaked at $392 billion, according to CoinMarketCap. At time time of writing, the total market cap was worth $389.6 billion.

Prices bottomed near $361 billion on Thursday, their lowest level of the month, in the wake of a high-profile blockchain event.

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The ten largest cryptocurrencies by market cap rose by at least 3% on Monday. Tron was the biggest gainer percentage-wise, adding 12.7% to $0.077. Bitcoin cash (BCH) jumped 8.1% to $1,275 following a double-digit selloff last week. Cardano and Stellar each rose more than 4%.

Bitcoin rose 3.1% to $8,493. Its share of the overall market slipped to 37.2% from a high of around 37.6% last week.

Trade volumes have been relatively thin over the past 24 hours, with turnover amounting to $16.8 billion. Crypto trade volumes averaged around $21 billion at the end of last week. During the height of the bull rally earlier this month, daily turnover exceeded $30 billion.

Tom Lee Remains Bullish on Bitcoin

The head of research at Fundstrat Global Advisors admitted recently that his Consensus price forecast missed the mark.

In an interview with CNBC that appeared Friday, Lee said his firm was “overly optimistic” about the potential for a bigger Consensus price rally but nevertheless reaffirmed his bullish outlook on bitcoin.

“While there was not a Consensus bump, our conviction on crypto-currencies strengthened during the conference,” he said. “It’s the people that you know are important to this industry coming together.”

Prior to the event, Lee had predicted significant gains for bitcoin and other crypto assets. His reasoning was rooted in the last three Consensus summits, which sparked an immediate rally for digital currency prices.

Bitcoin prices declined sharply during the blockchain conference and eventually bottomed below $8,000 – a figure not seen in a month.

In Lee’s view, the Consensus rally did not happen for three underlying reasons: regulatory uncertainty, acceptance hurdles within banks and a lack of institutional custodial tools for mass adoption.

He added:

“Bitcoin doesn’t have to go up every day to move from $8,000 to $25,000. The ten best days account for all the return of bitcoin in a year. If you didn’t own bitcoin for ten days each year, you lost 25 percent each year.”

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 406 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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Altcoins

Cryptocurrency Prices Approach One-Month Lows as Altcoins Plunge, Bitcoin Falls Below $8,000

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Crypto prices were down sharply at the start of Friday trading, with the total market capitalization falling $22 billion over the past 24 hours.

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Market Update

At the time of writing, cryptocurrencies were collectively valued at $361.6 billion, according to the latest data from CoinMarketCap. The asset class peaked above $391 billion roughly 20 hours ago.

Trading volumes slipped to roughly $18.8 billion, with Hong Kong and South Korean exchanges accounting for the largest share of total activity.

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Like previous declines, the bulk of the losses were concentrated in the altcoin class, allowing bitcoin to boost its market share to nearly 38%.

Bitcoin prices breached the $8,000 floor early Friday, with prices shedding 4.8% to $7,974.

In terms of percentage losses, IOTA was the worst performing cryptocurrency in the top-ten. The coin shed 13% to $1.67.

Bitcoin cash continued its post-fork decline, with prices shedding 9.1% to $1,183. BCH is currently trading near its lowest level in a month.

Ethereum prices declined 6.6% to $664. Ripple’s native XRP currency was down more than 7% at $0.658.

Cryptocurrencies are on track for their second consecutive weekly decline, with prices shedding nearly 14% from last Friday.

New Study Quantifies Bitcoin Mining Energy Consumption

The first peer-reviewed study examining bitcoin’s energy consumption was released Wednesday, and the results aren’t endearing.

Research that appeared in a monthly publication by Cell Press estimates that bitcoin mining consumes at least 2.6GW of power, which is equivalent to the entire electric power grid harnessed by the Republic of Ireland. The report, titled Bitcoin’s Growign Energy Problem, predicts that power consumption from mining could reach 7.7GW before the end of 2018. That’s roughly the same amount as electric that Austria currently requires.

Author Alex de Vries made it clear in his report that the numbers he is using are speculative given the decentralized and secretive nature of the mining industry. The paper shows that current energy consumption could be as low as 2.6GW if we factor in the latest and most efficient mining hardware from Bitmain.

The so-called energy problem associated with bitcoin is expected to become more cumbersome as the network’s size increases. Some have speculated that mining could account for 5% of global energy consumption in the future.

Globetrotting crypto miners are constantly on the look out for the best energy deals, especially in the wake of China’s ban on the practice. Interestingly, several countries have stepped forward to highlight their favorable energy policies toward miners.

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:

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4.5 stars on average, based on 406 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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