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Ethereum Flirts With Record Highs as Buterin Compares Crypto Surge to Salvator Mundi Auction

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Ethereum prices climbed to fresh records on Tuesday, as crypto mania picked up where it left off before the launch of bitcoin futures over the weekend.

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ETH/USD Price Levels

The value of ether touched an intraday high of $522.63, which was the highest level ever recorded for the world’s no. 2 cryptocurrency. Ether’s previous record was set on Saturday when prices crossed $518.

At press time, the coin was valued at around $513 for a gain of more than 8%. That gave ether a total market cap of nearly $50 billion. The cryptocurrency has added more than 4,000% this year, putting it among the world’s top altcoins.

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Trade volumes approached $2 billion over the previous 24 hours, which is equivalent to 118,000 bitcoin. Coinbase’s GDAX exchange had the highest turnover, with ETH/USD accounting for more than 9% of the volume. Bitfinex also processed more than 9% of ether transactions via ETH/USD. Meanwhile, Bithumb’s ETH/KRW cross saw 6% of the daily volume.

In all these cases, more than half a billion in ether was transaction.

Ether has successfully traded above $500 on several occasions, but has struggled to maintain those price levels. The previous record high was partly associated with the latest CryptoKitties craze, which promises frictionless trading of digital assets via blockchain.

Looking ahead, ether could struggle to break free from its recently defined trading range between $450 and $500. Although the market is slowly recovering from a congested network, record highs have been much harder to come by in recent months than other cryptocurrencies. By comparison, bitcoin has set multiple record highs over the same period. Several leading altcoins have also managed to climb to new heights on multiple occasions. Ethereum’s rally continues to be very much off-and-on.

Buterin Weighs In

Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin recently compared the cryptocurrency market with the Salvator Mundi auction, which raised $450 million in November. The 23-year-old said growing interest in cryptocurrencies was “a reflection of the world at large. Buterin highlighted the growing popularity of CryptoKitties in sending his point across.

“I actually like the digital cat games,” Buterin said in a Dec. 4 tweet about CryptoKitties. “They illustrate very well that the value of a blockchain extends far beyond applications that would literally get shut down by banks or governments if they did not use one.”

Ethereum Use Cases on the Rise

Ethereum’s smart contract capability is being used by Switzerland’s largest banks to prepare for new European financial regulations. UBS announced Monday it has entered into partnership with Barclays, KBC and others to advance the MiFID II data collection initiative. The program will be driven by Ethereum smart contracts and run on the Microsoft Azure platform.

The combination of smart contracts and cloud will ensure banks can meet more stringent regulations on a common platform that will enable industry-wide reconciliation. Presently, these institutions must perform checks independently.

MiFID II will officially launch Jan. 3, 2018, and will replace the current regulatory directive.

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 348 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

Multi-Week Rally Continues as Cryptocurrency Market Surpasses $400 Billion; Bitcoin Cash Up 16%

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The cryptocurrency market’s jaw-dropping rally continued on Monday, with the total value of all coins surpassing $400 billion for the first time since early March.

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Bitcoin Cash Leads Market Higher

Bitcoin cash has dominated the headlines recently amid a series of oversized gains. BCH was the undisputed leader on Monday, surging 16.3% to $1,433, its highest since mid-February. The cryptocurrency added a staggering 87% over a five-day stretch, bringing its total market capitalization to $24.3 billion.

While there was no immediate catalyst for the rally, an upcoming hard fork of the BCH protocol has been cited as the most compelling force driving prices higher. BCH, the world’s fourth-largest cryptocurrency, will undergo a split on May 15. The update, known as Bitcoin ABC, will quadruple the BCH block size from eight megabytes to 32 megabytes. Advocates say this will heighten adoption in retail settings.

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By comparison, bitcoin’s block size is a mere 1 megabyte, although efforts are underway to boost scalability. (Interestingly, Satoshi Nakamoto probably conceived of a maximum block size to keep the blockchain from splitting.)

However, others have accused BCH advocates of artificially inflating the cryptocurrency. Much of the criticism has been levied at Antpool, a large mining group that is burning bitcoin cash on a daily basis, potentially reducing its total supply.

The Antpool network announced last week that it confirms more than 8% of all bitcoin cash transactions. The announcement prompted a 25% surge in BCH prices heading into the weekend.

$400 Billion

Bitcoin cash has been at the center of a much larger cryptocurrency rally that shifted into higher gear on Monday. Cryptocurrencies added more than $8 billion in market cap, bringing their total value to $401.7 billion.

The altcoin surge has diminished bitcoin’s market share to less than 38%, the lowest since mid-February. The total value of all coins not named BTC rose $7 billion on Monday to $249.8 billion. The total crypto market, including bitcoin, bottomed at almost exactly that level earlier this month.

Outside of BCH, most of the large gainers on Monday were cryptocurrencies ranked outside the top-ten by market cap. IOTA rose nearly 5% to $2.13, Dash added 7.4% to $503 and bitcoin gold gained 16.8% to reach $77.36.

Total trade volumes amounted to $22.1 billion, which is considerably lower than the most recent peak. However, volumes are up substantially compared to last month, when daily turnover was roughly half of the current level.

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 348 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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EOS Remains Fifth-Largest Cryptocurrency Following Airdrop

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EOS continues to hold the fifth spot on the cryptocurrency world rankings, as the coin overcame post-airdrop fatigue en route to steady gains. The cryptocurrency has even gone as far as outshining many of its peers over the last two weeks, giving rise to further optimism about the upcoming eos.ios platform.

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EOS Price Levels

The value of EOS rose 5% on Sunday to $11.39, where it remained the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market cap. The total EOS market is valued at $9.3 billion, which is roughly $900 million higher than Litecoin, the No. 6 coin.

Trading at nearly three-month highs, EOS has rebounded 177% from its bear market low Mar. 18. Unlike other major cryptocurrencies, EOS overcame the recent swing low culminating on Apr. 6. Nevertheless, the coin has gained more than 95% since that date.

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Nearly $1 billion in EOS tokens exchanged hands on Sunday, according to data provider CoinMarketCap. That made EOS the fourth most actively traded currency worldwide, with Asian exchanges Huobi, OKEx and Bithumb processing the largest share of transactions.

Interestingly, EOS was on one side of roughly 13% of USDT trades. USDT is the native token of Tether, the so-called stablecoin that claims to be backed by U.S. dollars.

EOS, which also trades against other major cryptocurrencies, was last valued at 0.001297 BTC (-0.2%) and 0.018146 ETH (-2.8%).

Democratizing Blockchain

As an operating system, EOS is being designed to give developers the tools to build decentralized applications (DAPPs) through the delegated proof-of-stake mechanism. This system seeks to democratize the development process using a voting system that is equivalent to the number of coins each party retains. Only voted block producers can participate in the production of blocks and be rewarded by the network.

Given its proof-of-stake mechanism, EOS generated significant buzz earlier this month when it announced a lucrative airdrop event for Apr. 15. The terms of the airdrop stipulated that each EOS holder with 100 or more units would receive an equivalent number of eosDAC tokens.

eosDAC is an ERC-20 token that will migrate to the EOS platform once it is launched in early June. In time, it is probably that eosDAC tokens will also provide DAPP- and utility-based services that can be used by network members. A full ICO review of the eosDAC project can be found here.

Anticipation for the Apr. 15 event triggered a huge spike in the value of EOS, which is not uncommon when airdrops are deployed. The sustainability of the rally post-airdrop suggests EOS is generating significant interest ahead of the platform’s launch.

Brought to life by Dan Larrimer, EOS is widely considered to be Ethereum’s next big challenger. Both platforms will compete in DAPPs and infrastructure development, potentially bringing blockchain further into mainstream discourse.

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 348 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 Market Approaching $400 Billion as Bitcoin Tests $9,000

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The cryptocurrency market extended its bullish rally on Sunday, as bitcoin and the major altcoins continued to test multi-month highs. Buy orders accounted for the overwhelming majority of transactions, giving rise to expectations of a more sustained upswing in prices.

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Cryptocurrency Rally Continues

The combined value of all cryptocurrencies peaked at $397.2 billion on Sunday, the highest since Mar. 8. At press time, the market was valued just below $394 billion.

Transaction volumes ebbed on Sunday, with daily turnover amounting to $20.8 billion. Volumes were up around $25 billion on Saturday.

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In terms of individual currencies, bitcoin crossed the $9,000 mark for the second time in as many days. The digital currency was last seen trading at $8,932, having gained 4.8%. However, its share of the total market decline to around 38%.

All major altcoins contributed positively to the rally, with Ethereum gaining nearly 5% to $632. The value of Ripple XRP rose 2.6% to $0.886. Bitcoin cash also extended its bullish rally, climbing nearly 7% to $1,226.

Since bottoming at $249 billion on Apr. 6, the cryptocurrency market has added nearly $150 billion in value. Since the market crash of early February, coins have crossed the $500 billion mark on only one occasion, and that was roughly two weeks later. The total market has been capped below $400 billion since early March.

Bulls in Firm Control

The dramatic recovery in cryptocurrency prices can be summed up in one vital statistic: nine out of every ten trades have been buy orders. That figure was as high as 92.9% on Thursday, according to TurtleBTC.

Cryptocurrency trading is largely governed by investor sentiment, especially among speculators entering the market for a quick profit. This environment, when combined with thin volumes, often generates sporadic trading conditions that are characterized by extreme volatility.

Sentiment has been overwhelmingly positive over the last two weeks as investors looked to capitalize on extreme oversold conditions. Traders have seemingly shrugged off negative news headlines concerning India’s crackdown on cryptocurrency trading as well as the state of New York’s inquiry into exchanges.

There’s strong reason to believe that South Korean traders are playing a major role in the price recovery. According to the most recent volume rankings, three South Korean exchanges are among the top-five in total trading volumes.  They are: OKEx ($1.8 billion in daily volume), Upbit ($965 million) and Bithumb ($751 million).

With the recent spike in volume, cryptocurrencies are once again trading at a large premium in South Korea. This is generally the norm during bull cycles due to high demand and supply constraints. These premiums drew negative attention to exchanges last year as government officials began equating cryptocurrency trading with gambling.

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 348 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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