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IOTA Plunges 20% in Broad Correction, but Outlook Remains Bright

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IOTA came crashing back down to earth on Thursday following an epic rally that took prices to record levels. The latest pullback has done very little to dissuade market participants about the coin’s long-term appeal.

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IOTA Price Levels

The IOTA-dollar exchange rate plunged more than 20% to $3.47. The coin touched an intraday low of $3.20 before paring losses later in the session.

At present values, IOTA is capitalized at $10.6 billion, placing it fourth among active cryptocurrenices. Daily trade volume exceeded $1.3 billion, with the bulk of the turnover occurring on Bitfinex and Binance. Combined, the two exchanges accounted for nearly 60% of market activity.

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Less than 24 hours ago, prices were seen at new record highs around $5.55 on news of a major agreement between IOTA and the likes of Microsoft and Fujistu.

IOT Revolution

One of IOTA’s claims to fame is its emergence as a major player in the market for Internet of Things (IOT). IOT is just as much a paradigm shift as it is a product or service, as it describes the new era of connectivity that is expected to sweep the globe. With tens of billions of connected devices, opportunity for monetization is expected to be plentiful. Although estimates vary, IOT is widely projected to be a multi-trillion-dollar phenomenon.

IOTA’s Data Marketplace has been created to decentralize global data flows to better leverage IOT. As IOT founder David Sønstebø recently highlighted, the growing reliance and penetration of data is creating a “machine economy” driven by interconnected devices.

Rather than go too far down the rabbit hole, investors should pay attention to the role of data in the new economy. How are businesses monetizing it and what sorts of tools are being used to derive value from it? This will quickly lead you to the domain of data analytics, which is a budding industry that intersects closely with IOT. It’s therefore no surprise that the likes of Microsoft and Samsung are joining IOTA’s pilot project.

Future Growth

Predicting the future of altcoins is notoriously difficult, and this is duly noted for IOTA. The cryptocurrency uses a new ledger technology that technically isn’t blockchain at all. Although this gives it unique features, it also makes the IOTA token more difficult to assess from an adoption standpoint. That being said, the platform’s integration with IOT serves a legitimate business purpose, leaving many analysts extremely bullish about the coin’s long-term prospects.

Perhaps the best gauge of IOTA’s long-term growth potential is the developer community itself. In general, developer activity is a good predictor of a cryptocurrency’s success over the long haul. The more activity surrounding a cryptocurrency, the higher its price. This fact was recently re-itereated by JP Vergne, professor at Ivey Business School in Ontario, Canada. As one might expect with the latest push into IOT, IOTA is generating a lot of buzz from the developer community. This should keep prices trekking higher for the foreseeable future.

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 404 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.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 404 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

Altcoins Lead Crypto Market Recovery as Consensus Summit Draws to a Close

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Cryptocurrencies rose in overnight trading Thursday, as altcoins rebounded from a double-digit slump on the heels of the biggest blockchain summit of the year.

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Altcoins Lead Recovery

All major crypto assets reported gains Thursday, clawing back nearly $18 billion in lost market cap from the previous day’s low. At press time, the combined value of all digital currencies in circulation was $389.3 billion, according to data provider CoinMarketCap. Market prices bottomed near $372 billion on Wednesday.

EOS and Tron were among the biggest gainers percentage-wise. EOS added more than 10% to $13.75, while Tron gained 11.1% to $0.073. Both currencies were down sharply earlier in the week.

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Ripple XRP gained 4.5% to $0.711 and Ethereum rose 3.1% to $712.81.

Bitcoin cash also rebounded from a series of volatile moves after a hard fork upgrade increased the protocol’s block size to 32MB from 8MB. The value of BCH rose nearly 4% to $1,324.63.

Bitcoin prices gained 1.3% overnight to trade at $8,406.51. Its total share of the crypto market weakened to 36.8% after reaching 37.3% just a few hours earlier.

Positive Developments from the Blockchain Industry

The crypto market’s weak performance this week has masked an outpouring of positive developments from the blockchain industry.

On Tuesday, Hacked reported four key developments related to institutional adoption, innovation and the apparent vindication of South Korea’s Upbit exchange following an audit of its records by local accountants.

Positive news kept coming mid-week after Square Cash leapfrogged PayPal’s Venmo digital wallet in terms of downloads. This is an important development for crypto traders as Square Cash allows transactions in bitcoin.

Square Cash has been downloaded roughly 28 million times, which is just 1 million below Venmo’s levels, according to analyst Dan Dolev.

In a note to clients, Dolev issued the following statement:

“With Square Cash App now open for bitcoin trading in most states, comparing its growth versus the popular Coinbase app is noteworthy. Here, while Coinbase saw growth peak around the holiday time — as bitcoin prices spiked — Coinbase’s growth has slowed from record levels, whereas Square Cash App experienced more balanced growth.”

Meanwhile, a start-up company backed by Goldman Sachs has announced plans to mint its own dollar-pegged cryptocurrency. USD Coin, as it will come to be known, will allow users to more easily pay for goods and services through cryptocurrency.

Circle, the company behind the project, will begin work on the new coin this summer.

The fourth and most successful Consensus summit wrapped up in New York on Wednesday. One of the key takeaways from this year’s event was the warm reception from U.S. regulators toward digital currency technology.

In a Wednesday panel that included Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) enforcement director James McDonald and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) cyber chief Robert Cohen, regulators said they did not want to hinder blockchain innovation. Although the panelists did not represent their respective agencies during the discussion, their openness to blockchain technology is a step in the right direction for crypto investors still weary of government intervention.

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 404 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 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 404 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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