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ICO Analysis: bitJob

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As we said in our analysis of Wolk yesterday, the mantra of disruption is to disrupt and dis-intermediate. We can’t stress enough how important the last point is, and yet we fear that many ICOs are missing it, forcing themselves into an intermediary or middleman role that will simply be flipped upside down on the next wave of disruption. The bitJob ICO is going live not long from time of writing, so we must be quick to get to the heart of it and see if it’s a basket for our eggs or not.

bitJob Overview

Freelance marketplaces are a thing that are ripe for disruption. Fiverr.com, for instance, takes 20% of the revenues that workers earn. Blockchain technologies can drastically reduce costs, and decentralized services can make them more viable. As such, anything which presents itself as a crypto version of Fiverr or Freelancer.com or Upwork or any of them is bound to pique the author’s interest.

In bitJob, the technology’s disposition appears important to the designers. They intend for clients – as in, the people who would be hiring people – to use a centralized server run by them. On the other end, they want a decentralized to be available for everyone using the platform. They believe that maintaining a more standardized, centralized infrastructure at the outset will improve adoption, and on this point they may be right. It’s no secret that many people like to use web wallets despite the risks. The same will be true of decentralized applications – people will prefer the easiest route forward, even if it means using something centralized to eventually transition to something not.

It is very simple: a student looking to provide services online connects to the marketplace, chooses from a list of professionals jobs for relevant work, provides quality delivery, and receives immediate payment of his choice, in cryptocurrency or fiat money.

bitJob addresses a criticism which says that there are no obvious benefits to them using a blockchain, pointing out that the lower cost of moving money on a decentralized ledger is far lower, among other things, like the fact that building a decentralized, blockchain-integrated platform early is better than playing catch-up when it becomes the norm. This is all sensible, but in general, we get the feeling that we’re being distracted from the fundamentals. How exactly do you intend to make money?

We built a fantastic affiliate program tht will strengthen the relationship between bitJob and the students: students’ unions will receive a commission from each transaction their students engage in. We have launched pilot agreements with leading student associations in Israel, in addition to a number of employers who were more than happy to participate. We are also negotiating with several leading job search engines to ensure a continuous flow of quality jobs.

We see. Layers of intermediation. One problem from the top is that these affiliate fees are compensated somehow, we will have a look at the confusing chart in a moment, and some students may be wise enough to view this as an unnecessary expense. Students are free to use the existing centralized marketplaces, after all. The real challenge for any platform which wants to enable freelancers to find clients is that it have enough of said clients. Despite the fact that Fiverr takes 20% of people’s earnings, it’s still likely the best option for many providers, by virtue of the fact that their odds of getting paying customers is much higher. The same is true of Freelancer, and Upwork. A great way to thwart all this is to, as much as possible, be friendly to the idea that clients should be able to use whichever platform has what they need. This is to say that probably the real masterful technology in this space will be one that enables both providers and clients to freely navigate between the various middlemen, and then the thing that would obsolete that would be something which allowed the two parties to directly communicate without any intermediation at all. (Something like OpenBazaar, perhaps?)

bitJob also points out that lower transaction costs mean that people in depressed regions of the world will be able to participate, as both providers and clients. While individually their revenues may be small, collectively the size of that market is functionally unknown until someone like bitJob actually does reach it in an all-encompassing way.

There is no need for bitJob to spend money on hardware, infrastructure, or tech staff. Platforms like Ethereum offer such infrastructure, which has minimal cost only when used. Any new technological advances within the Ethereum community will be available to the platform as soon as they are created. It would be impossible for a business that facilitates freelance jobs to simultaneously invent systems that can be competitive in the global market. Due to the competitive nature of technology in global markets, it is very likely that a new platform similar to Ethereum will someday appear — offering new abilities, gaining market share, and offering competitive pricing — thus creating an environment conducive to experimentation and to inexpensive operation.

This part seems a bit ridiculous. No tech staff? What if something goes wrong in the client system? Who fixes it when it breaks? And therefore, what is the money for? Just build it once and run it forever? We reject this notion off-hand. In terms of our points, this disposition against actually building a product is expensive for bitJob.

bitJob Token

bitJob describes its acceptance of a variety of currencies as a good thing, but for the token holder, it makes the proposition sort of a non-starter. Their justification for the creation of the token is rather weak, perhaps the only valid or acceptable argument in that section of their whitepaper is that branding their own token gives people some incentive to be in some sort of exclusive network, and that it gives them help in approaching student unions and other affiliates. As we said before, we’re most interested in platforms which have foreseen the future disruptions they may themselves face, and we’re not noticing an awareness of that here at all.

A total of 128 million tokens are going up for sale today at a rate of 0.0011261261Eth each, with a tiered bonus structure related to the number of tokens sold, as shown below:

bitJob Flaw

The justification for the token goes like this: in the future, decentralized applications and blockchains are going to be commonplace, so we should be prepared for that. While this is true, it does mean that if you are not going to provide some forced inherent value for your token (such as a limited supply complimented with a specific purpose that no other token can perform, to put it in very few words), and therefore can’t float a good demand proposition for said token, it’s hard to see why investors should throw Ether at it.

bitJob Team

What they lack in experience, they make up for in numbers. bitJob has a fairly large team to compensate. We must stress that our problems with bitJob are not in the implementation of the business strategy itself, but in the way that the token is assigned insufficient importance to really drum up demand. This is to say, we’re going to give them the team points, at least. The four co-founders are Dror Medalion, Bogdan Fiedur, Aviad Gindi, and Elad Kofman. Two have experience in blockchain development, one has spent most of his career building affiliate systems (intermediaries between customer and producer), and one is a currently active mutual fund manager. Collectively, they appear to be in the right positions.

As we noted earlier, the company has no intention of building a staff to maintain the software going forward. Perhaps their intent is to hire out the work through the platform? There’s a thought, but we don’t get that impression in our overview. Nevertheless, hype is a powerful force, and we note that with the current buzz around cryptocurrencies, it’s highly likely that student association and individual student interest will increase the talent pool sufficiently. The rubber hits the road when companies actually begin to use the service – bitJob may casually allude to partnerships with companies that are eager, but none of these are listed on the website, nor in the whitepaper. We certainly believe that companies can make use of a service which enables part-time jobs and micro-transactions, but we need a bit more proof than that.

The Verdict

We think the only play is a short play with this token, because on the long-scale, unless they force the use of the token in the system, and only focus on making it easy for the students to get to fiat cash, preference for the token will be hard to develop, and demand for it is what makes it actually valuable. Students may find themselves getting paid an increasingly worthless token, and just choose the fiat option where available. Commitment to the system seems hard to develop when it’s as trivial to go elsewhere. All of this is bad news for anyone aiming to hold this token long-term.

Risk

  • See directly above, we think it elucidates a deduction of 5.75 (possible 6) points.

Growth Potential

  • We think they gathered the right people, which is important, this model allows up to 4 points for that.
  • We think their marketing is strong, and that marketing is the primary measuring stick for these types of marketplaces. We give 3 points on these grounds.
  • For short-term traders, our primary focus here, we think the bonus structure may provide enough arbitrage for an early exit, but wouldn’t hold our breath on this one. +2
  • We do see student participation actually happening, and we applaud them laying the groundwork to get partnerships with student associations in place. As mentioned in the main body of this article, we fear that the several layers of mediation may fatigue actual providers and even clients. +1.5

Disposition

We’re not overly excited about bitJob. We arrive at a 4.75, with the caveat that short traders who are flexible enough should be able to take a small profit, if they’re interested, but there’s a hazard of a total drop-off that would make this difficult. At a base token price of over .001 (no matter the bonus structure), we see a potential immediate depression with little hope of recovery. Fair warning is considered served.

Investment Details

The sale opens in a few hours, and information about on how to contribute is copiously available at https://stu.bitjob.io/.

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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5 stars on average, based on 2 rated postsP. H. Madore has covered the cryptocurrency beat over the course of hundreds of articles for Hacked's sister site, CryptoCoinsNews, as well as some of her competitors. He is a major contributing developer to the Woodcoin project, and has made technical contributions on a number of other cryptocurrency projects. In spare time, he recently began a more personalized, weekly newsletter at http://ico.phm.link




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Analysis

Italy Spooks markets Again as Stocks Remain Under Pressure

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European stocks Led the way lower today despite a bullish start in Asia, as equities gave back their gains when Daimler published a surprising profit warning, which was deeply affected by the recent trade war developments, reigniting fears of a tariff-driven downturn in global trade.

DAX, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The Old Continent got into more trouble later on, when two anti-EU officials were named in Italy, resurrecting fears of a clash between the systematically crucial country and the core of the Eurozone. Italian yields rose in European trading, and although they are still shy of the levels hit during the May scare, the periphery could be in trouble as the ECB pledged to exit the market by the end of the year.

Nasdaq 100 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The main European indices were smashed lower during the session, with the DAX hitting a two month low, still being very weak relatively speaking compared to its US peers. US stocks sold off heavily following the opening bell and they failed to recover, unlike two days ago, and the major benchmarks traded well below yesterday’s levels just before the close.

The Nasdaq and the Russell 2000 lost some of their recent mojo, pulling back heavily of the all-time highs during the day. All in all, the risk off shift continues to dominate across the board, as we expected and we remain negative on risk assets here, especially regarding emerging markets, even as the Dollar’s rally could be over for a while.

Dollar Pulls back as Pound Surges

USD/CAD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The Dollar took a beating as the Philly Fed Index came in much worse than expected, and as the Bank of England sent hawkish signals, pushing the Pound and the Euro higher. The central bank left its benchmark rate unchanged at 0.5%, but a rate hike this year got much closer, with a key member of the bank voicing inflationary concerns.

The Greenback fell more than what the events would imply, so a larger scale consolidation could have already started in the currency following the recent gains and the marginal new high yesterday. With the EUR/USD pair nearing the 1.1450-1.15 support zone, the USD/CAD hitting 1.33 and the AUD/USD touching 0.7350, a meaningful counter-trend move would be timely in the surging reserve currency.

WTI Crude Oil, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Gold continued to drift lower before the Dollar’s reversal and it hit $1262 for the first time since lat December before bouncing back above the $1270 level in late trading. Crude oil also fell sharply in early trading, and the WTI contract traded with a $64 handle before rallying back to $66 per barrel.

The OPEC meeting, which is expected to result in a supply increase by the cartel made the crucial commodity very volatile in recent days, but we expect the bearish trend to continue, with a likely dip to the $60 level in the coming weeks.

Featured image from 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 279 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: Coins Drift Sideways as Trading Activity Plunges

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Liquidity dried up in the cryptocurrency segment in recent days, as trading volumes have been declining progressively, while the major coins got stuck in tight ranges. Only a few coins show signs of activity, and the bearish short-term patterns continue to dominate the market. With a group of currencies, namely Litecoin, Monero, Dash, and Bitcoin itself clearly dragging the segment down, the short-term trend will likely continue, as the previous leaders are now showing strength either.

While all of the top digital currencies are showing some gains today, and the total value of the market edged close to $290 billion, major resistance levels are still towering above. The fact that the effect of the Bithumb hack faded away quickly is a positive here, but until signs of bullish momentum and a clear leadership forming, the short-term outlook remains bearish.

BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Bitcoin continues to trade near the $6750 level, edging ever closer to the declining short-term trendline, in a bearish consolidation pattern. Bulls would need a sustained move above $7000 to negate the declining trend, but for now at least a test of last week’s lows is likely with a possible move towards the key long-term zone between $5850 and $6000.  The short-term zone around $6350 level provides support, while further resistance is ahead near $7350.

Ethereum Nears Trendline as ETC Attempts Breakout

ETH/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Ethereum has been among the strongest coins in the last few days again, and coupled with its long-term relative strength, the second largest coin is still the best candidate to lead a recovery. That said, the coin still faces strong resistance between $555 and $575, and bullish momentum is suspiciously weak. Primary support is found at $500 with further zones near $450 and $400.

ETC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Ethereum Classic has been positively diverging compared to the rest of the market, together with Binance Coin, and to a lesser extent Tron ever since its inclusion to Coinbase, and the coin moved above the key $16 resistance yesterday in late trading.

While ETC is slightly overbought from a short-term perspective, a consolidation above $16 and a subsequent move higher could confirm a trend change. For now, the short-term trend signal is only neutral, and traders should remain cautious given the broad downtrend in the segment

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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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4.6 stars on average, based on 279 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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Altcoins

Treading the Floods: Cryptocurrency Prices Stable Following Bithumb Attack 

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Cryptocurrencies emerged unscathed Wednesday following yet another security breach of a South Korean exchange, as the market continued to favor a corrective rally for bitcoin and the major altcoins.

Crypto Prices Hold Steady

Bitcoin fell by as much as $200 Wednesday on news of a cyber attack targeting South Korea’s Bithumb exchange. However, the coin quickly recovered and now sits just shy of $6,800, according to data provider CoinMarketCap. Prices peaked at $6,821.56 at 12:34 UTC.

Compared with 24 hours ago, bitcoin’s per-coin value was virtually unchanged.

The ten biggest altcoins by market cap exhibited the same pattern, with prices treading water compared with Tuesday afternoon. The total cryptocurrency market was valued above $290 billion, up from an earlier low of around $282 billion.

Bitcoin and the major altcoins have more or less retained their bullish bias, which suggests that a continuation of the upward trend is likely. Since bottoming last week, coins have rebounded $26 billion.

Bithumb Attack: What We Know

Hackers made off with roughly $31 million in stolen cryptocurrency on Wednesday as Bithumb suffered its third cyber breach in 12 months. The attackers reportedly targeted users’ holdings of XRP, the third-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, by running a series of unauthorized access attempts.

Bithumb was unable to prevent the attack despite spending upwards of 10 billion won ($9 million) on security enhancements. This includes complying with new guidelines for financial institutions requiring 5% of company staff be made up of IT specialists. Bithumb has reportedly exceeded that quota by a wide margin.

The Seoul-based exchange confirmed that it had migrated outstanding crypto balances to cold storage and said it will fully refund affected users. Transactions on the exchange remain suspended for now.

Although news of the attack hit the airwaves on Wednesday, some analysts believe the theft occurred several days earlier as part of Bithumb’s data upgrade. However, the exact cause of the breach remains unclear.

Goldman Sachs Weighs Crypto Trading as an Option

U.S. multinational investment bank Goldman Sachs is considering taking a bigger dive into cryptocurrency by launching a full-scale trading operation, according to COO David Solomon.

“We are clearing some futures around bitcoin, talking about doing some other activities there, but it’s going very cautiously,” Solomon said during an interview in China, as reported by CCN. “We’re listening to our clients and trying to help our clients as they’re exploring those things too.”

Currently, the Wall Street investment giant is clearing bitcoin futures contracts. It has also announced plans to introduce a new bitcoin trading operation, which includes using its own money to trade with clients in a variety of contracts linked to bitcoin.

Institutional traders are awaiting the arrival of custodial services dedicated to cryptocurrency before taking the full plunge into digital assets. To that effect, the San Francisco-based  Coinbase exchange is leading the charge by announcing a new line of crypto custodial services to unlock up to $10 billion in institutional capital.

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 462 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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