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Cryptocurrency Rally Stalls as Bitcoin Price Hits Resistance

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Cryptocurrency prices were down across the board on Saturday, with bitcoin – the market’s biggest bellwether – stalling near a key  resistance.

Market Update

After reaching a high of $225.6 billion on Friday, the total cryptocurrency market capitalization has fallen back to $211.3 billion, according to CoinMarketCap. The broad pullback was accompanied by only a minor dip in trading volumes, a sign that profit-taking was a factor.

Six of the top-ten coins (excluding Tether) had reported declines at the start of the weekend. Bitcoin was down 3.5% to trade at $6,355.00 on Bitfinex. The leading digital currency reached a high of $6,619, which is just shy of the most recent peak. Bitcoin’s market still exhibits strong trading volumes, with 24-hour turnover at $4.3 billion.

Among the major altcoins, Ethereum, Stellar Lumens, Litecoin and Cardano had each declined between 1.2% and 3.5%. On the opposite side of the spectrum, XRP, bitcoin cash and EOS had reported gains of at least 1.6%.

Bitcoin’s dominance rate, or the percentage of the total cryptocurrency market cap held in BTC, was 52%. Bitcoin accounted for as much as 54.5% of the total market capitalization earlier this week.

Dollar Factor?

The recent meltdown in cryptocurrencies originated 11 days ago when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced it would delay a ruling on a highly anticipated bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). However, analysts have struggled to explain the extent of the selloff – namely, the $35 billion plunge between Aug. 10-13.

According to eToro analyst and Hacked contributor Mati Greenspan, a surging U.S. dollar may have contributed to the decline. As CCN reports, the cryptocurrency market’s movements this week have been highly correlated with fluctuations in emerging-market currencies. Emerging-market exchange rates have been rocked by contagion fears emanating from Turkey’s political crisis, which have boosted demand for the U.S. dollar. As Hacked reported Friday, the U.S. dollar index recent hit more than one-year highs.

“As the United States moves to tighten its economy and avoid strong inflation, they’re taking action that is strengthening the Dollar. Because the US Dollar is the global reserve currency, many smaller economies rely heavily on a stable exchange rate with the greenback,” Greenspan wrote. “So too, as the Dollar is being seen as a stable store of value at the moment, there really isn’t much incentive for people to store their money in digital assets.”

Bitcoin is generally viewed as a non-correlated asset, which means it enjoys unique price independence when comparted with traditional markets. Correlation, when it does occur, is often driven by the erroneous belief that bitcoin is associated with the broader market. This was observed earlier this year when bitcoin seemingly fell in lockstep with the U.S. stock market.

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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4.6 stars on average, based on 604 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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Crypto: Is Relative Value Investing Time Finally Here?

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For at least the past six months you have been kind enough to listen while the topic of relative value in cryptocurrencies has repeated more than once.  Could it finally be happening? Things are certainly in place. It seems to show every time the price of Bitcoin or any of the altcoins suddenly spikes for no apparent reason.

That is the time when investors buy crypto simply because there is no better value in things like stocks, bonds, real estate, gold or currencies.  So far this has not happened all that often, but things could finally be changing. The fact that crypto prices remain near 2018 lows, and with certain exceptions, the news has been pretty good, helps set the stage.

Until now investors in conventional assets have been simply too content.  And why not, the economy in the US is humming at a 4.2% annual rate. The S&P 500 has tacked on another 8.5% so far and seems to be cruising through the traditionally volatile month of September to reach new records.  

And here is the real tattle tale, the CBOE VIX is near 2018 lows around 11. Without going into all the details, the VIX is Wall Street’s traditional measure of investor fear.  During the 2008 financial crisis, the VIX hit 60. Back in February it was at 37. That was about the time the S&P 500 fell 10%. So get the idea: today, investors are too content.  That needs to change before crypto’s relative value shines through. Here is something to focus on.

The key to the above average S&P performance has been the contribution of the tech sector. When you take out the near 22% increase from the market cap weighted S&P, well, you cut well over half of that performance down to only about 3%.  That still not bad, but it indicates a far more narrow market than smart investors should be comfortable with. What would happen to the VIX if the tech sector suddenly took a dive of 10%?

Sound crazy? Hardly, a 10%+ correction in tech stocks has taken place three times just since 2016, so this isn’t a far fetched idea.  In fact Barbara Kollmeyer at MarketWatch just penned an article titled: Bad news is building for this once-hot tech sector.  If her views prove out, this could be the key to driving investors to some of the values offered by crypto.

It all starts with the social media companies that form the backbone of the FANG stocks. Here is a sample. She opens with the thoughts of Tony Greer who heads TG Macro and who has a sour message on Twitter (TWTR) and Facebook (FB). According to Tony: “It’s finally time to be short social media” pointing out a “massive topping pattern.”

While the stock market generally may not be experiencing traditional levels of volatility, lately tech stocks have charted a different course.  In referring to that change, Greer identifies September as a time of big change.

“That period of volatility put in a big top and a double top in the social media ETF. Now it has broken its steepest ascending trend line, it’s broken down below all the major moving averages and they’re starting to curl over on top of it, which to me is going to cause another leg of a waterfall.”

The final proof of technical weakness is shown in the Global X Social Media ETF that contains a handful of social media names from Facebook, Twitter and Alphabet. This little gauge is actually down around 3% this year.

In addition to his technical observations, he points the negativity surrounding the Cambridge Analytica scandal, subsequent upbeat earnings, then news that the platform was losing users.

Technology Is More Than Social Media

Lest we look for just any reason to be buying crypto it is only fair to mention the obvious. So far this year the tech sector has managed to add 22% even with the substantial underperformance of social media.  Any notion of painting the world coming to an end would be misleading.

However, technology has many interrelated links and sometimes when one sector is under pressure it can spread.  In the meantime the gap between overvalued stocks and depressed crypto prices is setting the stage for the search for value to have its day in the sun. So keep one eye on the VIX.

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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4.4 stars on average, based on 104 rated postsJames Waggoner is a veteran Wall Street analyst and hedge fund manager who has spent the past few years researching the fintech possibilities of cryptocurrencies. He has a special passion for writing about the future of crypto.




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Is Litecoin’s Price Being Suppressed?

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Litecoin is facing a prolonged smear campaign that is prompting investors to short the digital currency in ever increasing numbers. Charlie Lee, Litecoin’s founder, recently took to Twitter to clear up the fear, uncertainty and doubt plaguing his protocol over the past three months. In a market that rises and falls on the turn of a speculative dime, Lee’s clarity can’t come a moment too soon.

Campaign Against Litecoin

Lee didn’t mince words on Thursday when he claimed that Litecoin’s price was being purposely suppressed by certain segments of the market. In a ten-post Twitter-storm, Lee explained that people and funds are shorting LTC because of its perceived threat on other protocols that can’t compete with its speed, security and liquidity.

From @SatoshiLite:

“Recently, there has been a concerted effort to suppress Litecoin price by people/funds that are shorting LTC and by groups that see Litecoin as a threat. I will clear up this FUD and show why Litecoin has tremendous value.”

Litecoin’s price has plummeted 45% over the past three months and has slipped further away from the market-leading headlines of early 2018. Litecoin appears to have lost all relevancy for laypeople and retail traders new to the space. Case in point: its Google Trend score is currently 2. It peaked at a perfect 100 in mid-December. What’s more, the Trend score has held single digits for over six months. This basically means people aren’t searching for Litecoin.

While people outside of Litecoin may not have noticed, the protocol is better today than it was during the height of the bull market thanks to improvements in Lightning Network, rising transaction volumes and increased support from payment processors. As Lee noted, LTC is supported by more than nine payment processors, including Alliant Payment, BTCPay, Coinbase and CoinGate.

Dispelling the FUD

Below is a rundown of the FUD-inducing headlines that Lee tackled on Twitter.

1. Litecoin can’t differentiate itself from other altcoins.

Lee: Litecoin is protected by $150 million in ASIC hardware and is one of the most secure coins available.

2. There’s no incentive for miners to attack the network because it will undermine the value of their ASIC hardware.

Lee: LTC’s liquidity and availability on practically every fiat-to-crypto exchange makes it one of the most widely available cryptocurrencies on the market (even more than Ethereum).

3. You can’t pay with Litecoin.

Lee: Not only is LTC supported by more than nine payment processors, its merchant acceptance is also growing significantly. LTC processes more than $200 million in transactions each day.

4. Litecoin is irrelevant since bitcoin can now scale with Lightning Network.

Lee: Several Lightning Network clients and apps already support Litecoin because they value the network. With atomic swaps, it’s not an either/or proposition when it comes to LTC and BTC. Also, “LTC interoperates with BTC on the Lightning Network.”

5. As a testnet of Bitcoin, Litecoin is not really worth $3 billion.

Lee: While Litecoin only has one use case (testnet), it has tangible value. Besides, it only has 3% of bitcoin’s market cap.

6. Litecoin has not done anything meaningful development-wise in six months.

Lee: People are looking in the wrong place. Although developers aren’t working on the master branch, they are still active behind the scenes. Versions 0.16.2 and 0.16.3 were released in the last two weeks.

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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4.6 stars on average, based on 604 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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Electroneum Coin Price Surges 31% On Launch of Instant Crypto Payment App

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The newly launched beta-version of the Electroneum mobile payment app went live this week. And as successful reports filter in from testers from around the globe, the good news is translating into positive sentiment on the exchanges for the ETN coin.

ETN Price On the Up

In the twenty-four hour period leading up to the morning of September 20th, ETN gained 31% on its value. The coin price climbed from the daily low of $0.005203, up to the latest peak of $0.006827.

New volume continues to pour in at time of writing, after climbing throughout the day from around $180,000 to $570,000 – just over a 216% increase. Weekly gains stand at 34%, but only really heated up in the last two days as news of Electroneum’s app came to be known.

ETN/BTC trades are the most dominant, with over 80% coming from Cryptopia and Kucoin alone. The coin had long been lingering outside the market cap top one-hundred after 85% losses from Q2 into Q3.

All-time lows were reached as early as April for ETN, and the coin continued to notch up new lows right through the year. Sentiment had perhaps soured on the coin after the company website suffered a DDoS attack in April of 2018, prompting them to lock user accounts and deny access to funds while they attempted to address the problem.

Electroneum App Rolls Out

The beta-version of the app was released this week, and Electroneum’s twitter feed was inundated with accounts from individual and business users who had successfully tested the product.

One video showed a merchant in Egypt demonstrate setting up the app to transact with the existing retail API most prevalent among retailers in the nation. Another batch of tests were carried out by users on Reddit, who successfully transacted some ETN between Japan and the U.S in a matter of seconds.

Last night, founder and CEO Richard Ells released this blog post celebrating what appears to be a successful beta-launch, saying:

“Easy access for users was the first step and we’ve now had over 1m app installs and we’re proud to say the Electroneum app has the same retention level as Instagram (®)!”

According to Electroneum, they currently have over 1.6 million registered users. If true, that would make it one of the most adopted crypto apps to date. The blockchain-based social media site, Steemit, has been around for over two years, and has just over 1.1 million registered users.

It’s worth noting that the app requires some level of centralization. Essentially it is running a centralized app on top of a decentralized blockchain. The company say this is required since waiting for block confirmations would make merchant payments impractical.

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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4.4 stars on average, based on 58 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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