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ICO Analysis: Cosmos “Blockchain of Blockchains”

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Cosmos is a novel answer to “sidechains,” which aims to enable users to traverse a galaxy of blockchains with ease. One intended usage of the platform will be to enable automated overflow of transactions, due to the congestion in current cryptocurrency designs. Cosmos consists of “zones” and “hubs.” A “zone” can become congested, just like a traditional blockchain, but a hub operator can simply redirect portions of the traffic through other zones. Anything can be traded, including Bitcoin, provided that the zones being traded through are trusted by the trader(s).

Cosmos uses proof-of-stake instead of proof-of-work, which normally means that the computational capacity required for securing the blockchain is replaced with ownership. Those who own large amounts of coins generate larger amounts than those with smaller amounts, rather than competing in a mining race for block rewards, but Cosmos uses a slightly different method of doing so via Tendermint.

Interesting, right? Sounds like it has a lot of potential.

But we know how these “ICO” things go here at Hacked. Too often, the “initial coin offering” is in fact the only offering the coin ever produces. The Paycoin fiasco and others illustrate what can happen when you fork over money for something that doesn’t yet exist. There are a lot of things to consider when considering an ICO as an investment vehicle. For starters, is there a “premine,” or initial reward of coins to the creators in order to “fund development”? Premines are a huge red flag, because if the initial offering price of the coin is relatively high the temptation for said creators to simply cash out on the backs of investors is very real. Cosmos has no such premine, because it is not a cryptocurrency in and of itself, but it does have these early investors who have already claimed 5% of the total proceeds of the project.

These “initial investors” are not as much of a red flag, but rather a positive sign. If their investment can be verified, and they are not known scammers, then this investment could act to create an overly positive mood for later investors. These guys are already holding down 5% of the fort. Another 20% of the fort is held by Intercoin Foundation and the developers of Tendermint. This leaves 75% for the public to hold.

While having no premine per se, Cosmos does have another pretty severe liability: it does not yet exist. The funds being raised are intended to develop the concept. This means that your money could be better invested simply funding your own competing development. The lack of existing code for security and other researchers to audit is a major drawback to this offering. It’s almost enough to make this writer recommend against the risk.

What Cosmos does have is Tendermint. Tendermint is an interesting spin on proof-of-stake, and it is the technology Cosmos intends to underpin the blockchain of blockchains with. Rather than using the amount of coins that a user holds to determine new coins that enter the ecosystem and what transactions are confirmed when, the concept of block “validators” is introduced. A validator is a user who has placed a “bonding transaction,” which locks a certain amount of his coins away. Groups of validators submit “commit signatures” in order to confirm blocks. Blocks can be “forked” if two groups, each with a two-thirds majority vote, vote oppositely on the same block. This is unlikely, however, because validation groups are kept in check by a punishment system, in which whoever cast a duplicitous vote (there is no such thing as four thirds) will have their bonded coins eliminated from the system.

Cosmos is offered by the Interchain Foundation, which is (allegedly) a non-profit based in Switzerland. We use the term “allegedly” here because unlike the United States, Switzerland has no convenient way to verify the non-profit status of an entity. Swiss law does, however, make it very easy to create a non-profit and, by law, the status offers significant legal protection, as told by the NGO Service:

The members of an association, as well as the Committee members, cannot personally be held responsible for debts and obligations contracted by the association, neither for the damages caused in the pursuit of its activities.

The civil and criminal liability of members of the Committee cannot be invoked for offences committed by the association in its own name.

However, Committee members may be considered criminally liable if they have deliberately committed misdemeanours or have broken the law (theft, misuse of assets, sexual abuse, etc.)

ICF itself consists of the two people who started All-in-Bits (Tendermint, more later) and a person called Guido Schmitz-Krummacher. This Guido is apparently their man in Switzerland, and his qualifications seem to stem from a career of good management in avuncular fields.

Tendermint, on the other hand, is provided by a for-profit company called All-in-Bits, Inc., which has worked with other blockchain developers in the past. Founded by two of the same people who are behind the ICF, All-in-Bits has seen some significant successes in the blockchain space. Notably by helping eris, a blockchain development platform with an apparently promising future. AIB founder Yong Jae Kwon registered the corporation, which is based in Delware, in California two months ago in order to apply for a trademark on Tendermint. He lists a residential address of 1319 South Van Ness Ave #a, San Francisco, CA 94110 as the contact address for AIB in California.

But Wait a Minute

Effectively, the fact that the three-person board of ICF and the co-founders of AIB overlap, two individuals appear to have access to somewhere in the neighborhood of > 15% of the total atom supply at the outset.

The unit of exchange in Cosmos will be the atom. Atoms were sold to the pre-fundraisers at a discount of 15%. It is important to note that the ICF has reserved the right to raise more funds in the future by offering a discount of up to 25% to what they consider “strategic partners.” Strategic partners for Cosmos would be exchanges and others which have more incentive to act as honest validators than to attempt to attack the system. The Bitcoin enthusiast is likely thinking “inflation,” and Cosmos has addressed this in detail here.

  • The minimum inflation rate is 7%.
  • The maximum inflation rate is 21%.
  • In the beginning, the inflation rate will be 7%.
  • If in the past 4 months more than 2/3 of atoms were bonded more than 1/2 of the time, then decrease the inflation rate.
  • Otherwise, increase the inflation rate.

Atoms themselves are only valuable if the entire system has some value. This means that the functional value of an atom will require adoption of the platform, but those who hold the atoms and are therefore capable of validating will increase their holdings year-over-year just like a certificate of deposit. Assuming the rate of exchange is comparable upon exit, the ability to lose money is limited.

The initial cost of an atom for you will be ten cents each. The offering will begin April 6, 2017 at 6:00 AM PDT (9AM EST) – just a few hours from now. A total of 25% of the coin supply will be eliminated from the public offering, being awarded to the ICF and the Tendermint team, as well as the initial investor group. Interchain Foundation has published detailed instruction manuals on how to invest in atoms. They are accepting Bitcoin and Ether in exchange for atoms.

On a scale of 1 to 10 in terms of smart investments, Cosmos probably rates a 4.8 or so. There are significant drawbacks: technically hard to grasp and therefore potentially lacking mass appeal; 25% withheld from public hands, increasing the risk of a major pump and dump; non-existent technology (excepting Tendermint); concept/market has already seen and will continue to see significant competition, meaning an all-in bet on this could equate to a total loss on the opportunity (perhaps better to spread the eggs amongst the “blockchains of blockchains” baskets).

That said, there is a lot of potential for this technology. One can imagine massively multiplayer online games creating assets on the Cosmos network for in-game transactions; companies issuing rewards programs using zones designed for as much; relay networks for large financial institutions; stock exchanges tracking trades; inventory applications, and much more.

Despite the low rating, it’s hard to advise against putting a few dollars into the project. If you pick up a few thousand atoms and the whole thing goes sour, you can dump along with everyone else and suffer a minimal loss (if any) in the deluge. As previously noted, however, it’s probably wise to invest in similar plays, like Ethereum, simultaneously.

As a pure stock-like investment, though, it rates even lower than previously rated. The liquidity has too few guarantees, for one, but also a significant time would have to be spent compensating for technical debt in the investor. This time might be better spent actively trading coins which have less of a learning curve.

Yet, again, as a complex investment, wherein you are willing to take the steps to learn how to maximize the yield (such as starting up zones, lending your atoms to validators, and building applications around the platform), it could be the most profitable buy you make this year. Could be. It’s hard to express an extreme amount of confidence in a product which does not yet exist. Further, not enough is known about the process which will be used to hire a development team. This part alone contains all the makings of a great scam: convince people they are investing in development costs, award the development contract to yourself, and never deliver the product.

It’s all very complex, and requires a technical mind to fully grasp. However, so was Ethereum, and while many bet heavily against it believing it would be just another scam coin, an ether is currently worth over $40, making it one of the best performing non-Bitcoin cryptocurrencies around.

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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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. jedashford

    April 6, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    Woke up and was sad to see it already sold out. This article would have been perfectly timed…yesterday 🙂

  2. Parentesi

    April 9, 2017 at 3:31 am

    Agreed, a few hours to late, the article or me ^_^
    Are there any options in the near future to invest in Atoms?

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Altcoins

Ethereum Price Analysis: ETH/USD Has Big Opportunity to Fly Again

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  • ETH/USD is running at seven consecutive sessions of losses, dropping as much as 25%.
  • Price action is moving within a strong demand area, which could very well see the price rocketing again.

Current Price Action

ETH/USD is stuck within a stubborn downward trend. The price is running at a seven consecutive session losing streak. During this time period, ETH/USD has dropped as much as 25%, falling from $226, down to recent lows of $171.95. This is the biggest weekly loss seen since the bear market back in September.

The price was trading in a consolidation manner; this had been the case after the above-mentioned bear market drop. ETH/USD at the time had dropped as much as 45%, before finally staging a recovery. Since the bounce on 12th September, price action began to form a bearish pennant pattern, which was then firmly broken on 14th November.

ETH/USD daily chart

Buying Opportunity  

At the time of writing, ETH/USD is seen trading deep within a known demand area. Buyers last pilled in and drove the price north, back on 12th September, as detailed above. It had gone on to gain a whopping 50%, following the hammer candlestick reversal confirmation. The demand can be eyed around the $170 territory.

Eyes should be on indications of a reversal, the potential for a signal from a candlestick formation, similarly to the prior mentioned recovery. In terms of the RSI via the daily time frame, ETH/USD is very much in oversold territory. The index seen around the 27 level at the time of writing, which could see the price soon bottoming out.

Upside Targets

Should life be kicked back into the bulls, another retest of the breached pennant pattern would likely be seen. Resistance underneath the pennant should be noted at the psychological $200 mark. The bears firmly ran through this price level on 14th November. Further north, another barrier can be observed at $230 area, a known supply zone.

There has been much debate over the past couple of months, as to whether the cryptocurrency market has hit the bottom. Many believed that this was the case, after the deep September drop. While some were still calling another corrective fall. Once some stabilization from the bulls is seen and recovery picks up momentum, this may be the last of the bears for 2018.

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 54 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.




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Analysis

Bitcoin Update: Bull and Bear Scenarios

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To say that the last two days in crypto have been a bloodbath would be an understatement. Many altcoins have broken critical support areas. Some cryptos even registered new yearly lows. One of those is Bitcoin (BTC/USD).

Bitcoin dropped to as low as $5,188 on Coinbase and lost as much as 20% of its value within 48 hours. The move forced numerous retail traders and long term hodlers to give up their digital assets. It also reinvigorated bears who felt ecstatic that $6,000 support crumbled into pieces. Their renewed confidence gave them the voice to spread fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD). The chatter of Bitcoin trading at $2,000 – $3,000 has been the noisiest in the last 48 hours.

If you’re an ordinary investor who believes in the revolutionary power of Bitcoin, the amount of FUD out there might shake your beliefs. However, is there a grain of truth in what bears are yapping? In this article, we reveal the possible bull and bear scenarios to prepare you for whatever comes next.

The Bullish Scenario

Bulls have a simple task ahead in the next few days. They just need to take Bitcoin above $5,800 before the week closes to preserve the weekly support. This has the potential to invalidate the descending triangle breakdown and create a bear trap. However, with heavy bearish pressure, this is easier said than done.

With that being said, the key levels to watch in addition to $5,800 are 5,500, 5,300, and 5,190. The line in sand is 4,800. Below that, we’ll very likely experience a full-blown and painful bear winter.

As of this writing, Bitcoin is working really hard to establish support at $5,500. This is a positive signal. It works well with our bullish scenario of an inverse head and shoulders reversal pattern on the 15-minute chart.

BTC bullish scenario

In this scenario, bulls have two great chances to make this work. They can create a bullish higher low setup at $5,500 or at $5,300 to complete the right shoulder.

Another play would be a quick relief rally between $5,600 to $5,700. From there, we would likely experience a heavy volume dump to prices between $4,800 – $5,190. With this scenario, we’ll get a solid double bottom structure in the 15-minute chart where bulls can stage a reversal.  

BTC double bottom

This double bottom scenario is where many hodlers would capitulate and at the same time, it would exhaust many sellers. For this to manifest, however, bulls must show that they’re ready to battle to the bitter end so they can close the week above $5,777. Otherwise, bears will continue to rampage unchecked.

The Bearish Scenario

From a technical perspective, the descending triangle breakout has an ultimate target of $2,800. In addition, Bitcoin has firm weekly and monthly support levels at $3,000. These are the reasons that fuel calls for Bitcoin trading at $3,000.

Bitcoin bear scenario

It’s safe to say that this is not a pretty sight.

For this to happen, Bitcoin must close below $5,800 this week and then retest $5,800 – $6,000 next week. This price action would confirm that $6,000 is now a resistance. Therefore, bears would be able to use all the strength of $6,000 as support and flip it into a heavy resistance area.  

If this happens, there’s a strong possibility of a long and painful Bitcoin bear market that can extend for many months. During this period, the market may range trade between $3,000 – $6,000. This is not the scenario that we’re looking for. However, it is always better to prepare for such possibilities.

Bottom Line

Richard Wyckoff said: “The more compact the trading range is, the more likely the stock is under control by professionals, and the greater the possibility for the swift explosive move upward following a spring or a shakeout…watch for them”. This is why we remain bullish in Bitcoin despite the massive dump. After the compact trading range in the last few months, we believe that this is the spring or the shakeout before the explosive move upward.

At this point, we are rooting for the bull scenarios mentioned above but we’re also seriously considering the bearish case. In short, we’re hoping for the best but also preparing for the worst.

 

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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3.7 stars on average, based on 271 rated postsKiril is a CFA Charterholder and financial professional with 5+ years of experience in financial writing, analysis and product ownership. He has passed all three CFA exams on first attempt and has a bachelor's degree with a specialty in finance. Kiril’s current focus is on cryptocurrencies and ETFs, as he does his own crypto research and is the subject matter expert at ETFdb.com. He also has his personal website, InvestorAcademy.org where he teaches people about the basics of investing. His ultimate goal is to help people with limited knowledge of finance and investments to create investment portfolios easily, and in line with their unique circumstances.




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Analysis

Pre-Market Analysis And Chartbook: Dollar Dips on Dovish Powell as Brexit Deal Still in Question

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Friday Market Snapshot

Asset Current Value Daily Change
S&P 500 2,711 -0.83%
DAX 30 11,265 -0.78%
WTI Crude Oil 57.59 1.80%
GOLD 1,221 0.66%
Bitcoin 5,555 -0.53%
EUR/USD 1.1380 0.50%

Today is shaping up to be another wild ride in financial markets after the recent volatile sessions, with currencies, bonds, and equities all experiencing heavy trading. The Brexit process, the confusion regarding the US trade tariffs, and the broad bearish technical shift in risk assets are all contributing to the wild moves, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell also increased uncertainty yesterday.

The central banker hinted on possible pause in the Fed’s tightening cycle next year, citing increased economic headwinds following the open attacks form President Trump regarding the “tight” policies of the bank.

As Mario Draghi confirmed the ECB’s quantitative tightening plans as well, the Greenback lost ground compared to most of its peers, even as the main European currencies continue to be under pressure due to the Brexit chaos.

EUR/GBP, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The Euro and the Pound, which are trading near their yearly lows compared to the Dollar, are stuck in a very volatile broad trading range against each other. The EUR/GBP pair topped out just above 0.90 this year, and although since the August high it drifted back to 0.86, the Pound remains weak from a long-term perspective.

A no-deal Brexit could hurt the British currency more and even a push above the decade-long high near 0.93 could be ahead. Short-term, we expect volatility to remain high in the pair, and in forex markets in general, and a move out of the range could happen soon.

USD/JPY, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Another possibly important move started in the USD/JPY pair and in gold in recent days, as the broad risk-off shift helped the Yen, with safe-haven flows favoring the currency and the precious metal again.

Following Powell’s dovish words, the pair could be ready to test the 112 level again, especially should the major stock indices continue lower in the coming week. Below 112, the 111.40 and the 110.70 levels provide support, while strong resistance is ahead near 113.70 and 114.50.

Another Selloff in Stocks as Bearish Pressures Mount

Global stock markets are lower today, despite yesterday’s reversal and late-day rally on Wall Street, which was sparked by renewed trade optimism, following rumors on a possible halt of the US tariffs on Chinese goods.

The rumors were quickly denied, but there is more and more evidence that the Trump administration might be changing its aggressive strategy, while China also seems more flexible in light of the economic slowdown and the turmoil in Chinese assets.

FTSE 100 Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The Brexit chaos is also weighing on equities in Europe and across the globe, with British assets clearly being under pressure, despite the rally attempts on the positive headlines regarding the draft withdrawal plan.

For now, the fate of the plans is still highly uncertain, despite the progress made by Theresa May. The hawkish words of Draghi also added to the bearish pressures today, as the Eurozone CPI was in line with expectations.

Nasdaq 100 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The major US indices all opened lower today, despite the continued decline in Treasury yields, with clear weakness in the tech sector and small-caps. Industrial Production missed the consensus estimate in October, with a monthly growth of only 0.1%, and the previous reading was also revised lower.

The key benchmarks are not far above the October lows, the recent rally attempts all failed, so given the bearish global technical picture, conditions in equity markets remain hostile for bulls.

ChartBook

Major Stock Indices

S&P 500 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Dow 30 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

VIX (US Volatility Index), 4-Hour Chart Analysis

DAX 30 Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

EuroStoxx50 Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Nikkei 225 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Shanghai Composite Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

EEM (Emerging Markets ETF), 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Forex

EUR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

GBP/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

AUD/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Commodities

WTI Crude Oil, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Gold Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Copper Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

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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4.7 stars on average, based on 396 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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