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Litecoin, Stellar Lead Crypto Market Past $800 Billion on Saturday

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Saturday was another record-setting session for global cryptocurrencies, as double-digit gains for Litecoin and Stellar pushed the global market north of $800 billion for the first time.

Altcoins Surge

After a brief dip, the altcoin market was back on the offensive Saturday. By midday, 12 of the top 14 altcoins had reported gains, according to CoinMarketCap, with Litecoin and Stellar leading the rally.

Litecoin surged more than 20% to $303 before paring gains later to settle around $286. The upswing gave the LTC token a total market cap of $16.5 billion, placing it sixth among active cryptocurrencies. Daily turnover in Litecoin was $2.3 billion, with Coinbase’s GDAX processing more than 13% of the transactions. South Korean exchange Bithumb saw 11.5% of the daily turnover.

Stellar Lumens also had a big session, with the XLM token rising more than 16% to to $74 cents. Stellar peaked around 92 cents on Thursday before a sharp correction slammed the breaks on the altcoin rally. Before Friday’s correction, the cryptocurrency essentially doubled in value over a three-day period.

At present values, Stellar has a market cap of $13.2 billion, with daily trade volumes approaching $600 million. Stellar transactions were mostly spread across three exchanges – Binance, Poloniex and Bittrex.

Meanwhile, bitcoin prices continued higher on Saturday after posting double-digit percentage gains during the previous session. The worlds’ no. 1 digital asset was last seen trading above $17,100 for a market cap of roughly $288 billion. Bitcoin’s trade volumes over the last 24 hours amounted to $19.5 billion, latest data show.

Crypto Market Reaches New Milestone

The total value of cryptocurrencies in circulation climbed above $800 billion on Saturday for the first time ever. At last check, the market was capitalized at $803.5 billion for a gain of 44% over the past seven days.

About 64% of the market cap is altcoins, with Ripple, Ethereum and bitcoin cash accounting for the largest share.

The altcoin universe has been drawing more attention as of late, as investors seek to diversify their basket of digital assets. Many of the leading altcoins offer unique advantages over bitcoin, but all face significant volatility and uncertainty. This means investors should grow accustomed to wild swings in the digital asset class, even as the trajectory remains overwhelmingly positive.

The shift away from a bitcoin-centric market is also reflected in the daily volume rankings of cryptocurrencies themselves. Over the past 24 hours, bitcoin accounted for roughly 39% of transactions. The rest was made up of altcoins.

Over the past 30 days, bitcoin’s trade volumes have amounted to $435 billion. Ethereum’s 30-day volumes came in at nearly $99 billion and Ripple XRP saw roughly $86 billion in transactions.

Lesser known cryptocurrencies like Tether, Qtum, Tron and EOS also cracked the top-ten volume rankings, according to CoinMarketCap.

Rising market valuations for cryptos have put high net worth investors on notice. Head of UBS Sergio Ermotti told Bloomberg back in October that the wealthy were more curious about cryptocurrencies  – and that was before the most recent surge.

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 603 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

Volatile and Illiquid; Aurora (AOA) Backtracks 55% After Recent Gains

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Aurora (AOA) has proved one of the most illiquid and yet most most volatile cryptocurrencies in the market cap top one-hundred in the past week; gaining 409%, and then losing half of it all within the space of seven days.

All of this activity originated on just one exchange, Kucoin. That is unless you count the five dollars worth of AOA tokens traded on Bitinka. Wednesday morning’s snapshot shows a coin that has endured a +450% swing in the past week – fuelled by a community social media bounty and a rather bold piece of hype-making by the Aurora Twitter team.

AOA Sinks 55% After 409% Gains

From September 12th’s low of $0.008640, AOA tokens surged off of Kucoin’s BTC and ETH buys up to September 17th’s token price of $0.044022 – marking 409% gains over five days. The majority of this activity was founded on less than a million dollars worth of trades, with AOA volumes almost quadrupling from the $280,000 range, up to around $920,000 on Sept 17th.

What took five days to build was then destroyed in less than two, as AOA plunged by 55% down to this morning’s valuation of $0.019418. The previous week’s surge had triggered several articles speculating on the promise of the Aurora platform, but ultimately the skeptics were correct and what went up predictably came back down.

The brief but effective piece of market making has undoubtedly seen a small number of traders take huge profits on Kucoin in the past week. The majority are likely nursing double-digit losses this morning after the sell-off over the last two days.

Hype Triggers Trades

As covered here in the run up to AOA’s recent peak, the Aurora community had been engaged in a social media bounty campaign to celebrate the launch of their new Berlin office.

The increased flurry of online activity likely acted as a trigger for the the week’s market making, and may have been helped along by this teasing image by the Aurora Twitter team. The image shows Aurora’s logo floating above a pair of smartphones, accompanied by the text:

“Faster TPS is just the beginning. #Aurora #AOA #Apple.

As far as I’m aware, Aurora has not yet partnered with the world’s first trillion dollar company. The image could be relating to an upcoming app that may be available for use by Apple phones, but the Aurora team remain tight-lipped at the moment, preferring to allow the speculation and chatter do its job.

It has been a frantic start for a token that only launched in June. The Kucoin listing only arrived towards the end of August, and we may be witnessing the turmoils of a newly launched token still attempting to find its value.

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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Bitcoin, Ether and Ripple Up in the Air as SEC Delivers a Sobering Reminder

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The U.S Securities and Exchange Commission just delivered a sobering reminder to the crypto community regarding the legal status of Bitcoin and Ethereum. SEC Director of the Division Corporation Finance William Hinman originally told a San Francisco conference in June that:

“…based on my understanding of the present state of Ether, the Ethereum network and its decentralized structure, current offers and sales of Ether are not securities transactions. And, as with Bitcoin, applying the disclosure regime of the federal securities laws to current transactions in Ether would seem to add little value.”

SEC Clarifies Crypto Security Stance

Today the SEC Chairman Jay Clayton released this official statement in which he reminded everyone that media statements made by SEC personnel should not be taken as legal pronouncements. Clayton stated:

“The Commission’s longstanding position is that all staff statements are nonbinding and create no enforceable legal rights or obligations of the Commission or other parties.”

In a particular sentence that may have been included specifically to cool the enthusiasm generated from his colleague Hinman’s original statement, Clayton states:

“…our divisions and offices, including but not limited to the Division of Corporation Finance, the Division of Investment Management and the Division of Trading and Markets, have been and will continue to review whether prior staff statements and staff documents should be modified, rescinded or supplemented in light of market or other developments.”

The last part about ‘modifying, rescinding or supplementing’ future documents suggests that the SEC are starting to worry about the effects their own words have on the very market they’re attempting to regulate.

When the original statement by Hinman hit the headlines in June, Bitcoin immediately surged by around 6%. Ethereum benefitted even more from the news and spiked 10% within the space of an hour.

Consequences for Bitcoin, Ether and Alts

The reminder from the SEC is unlikely to affect the average bag-holder, who in all likelihood disregards much of what comes out of such traditional institutions as the SEC. The news is more likely to strike hesitation into the minds of large-scale, corporate investors who thought all of this uncertainty was already behind them.

It could also spell either good or bad news for Ripple, which is currently fighting five lawsuits – including two federal lawsuits – against claims that its token sale represents a security issuance.

Director Hinman’s original statement back in June suggested that decentralization was key to avoiding being classed as a security. He suggested that coins and tokens from centralized blockchains would have a harder time with the SEC:

“Over time, there may be other sufficiently decentralized networks and systems where regulating the tokens or coins that function on them as securities may not be required. And of course there will continue to be systems that rely on central actors whose efforts are a key to the success of the enterprise. In those cases, application of the securities laws protects the investors who purchase the tokens or coins.”

With XRP being the third largest capped coin in existence, its prominence has made it a prime target for those suspicious of the currency’s relationship to the Ripple company. As the lawsuits began to pile up, many began to question what Hinman’s words would mean for XRP.

Today’s clarification by Chairman Clayton could be seen as a reprieve for XRP, as it essentially shelves the decentralization issue for the time being. On the other hand, it could mean that even if XRP is proved to be wholly decentralized, it may have even larger requirements to fill before gaining a positive classification – as could the rest of the entire crypto market.

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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FunFair’s Value Expands 20% in a Week amid Catalysts

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FunFair (FUN) has taken investors on a wild ride in the last month along with the broader cryptocurrency market. Most recently, however, the FUN has hit a stride, increasing its value by approximately 20% over the last week. For the month, the coin remains lower by 14% as most ETH-based tokens have been following the lead of the No. 2 cryptocurrency Ethereum, which has similarly posted gains for the week, up 14%, but a loss for the month at 30%.

Source: Trading View

FunFair’s relative strength remains in neutral territory at 47.4, while the MACD level is bullish. Most of the moving averages, however, are signaling sell, with the exception of the EMA and SMA. Meanwhile, despite the fact that ETH isn’t out of the woods yet, if FUN is going to continue to follow its larger peer’s path, it could be in for more gains in the final quarter of the year with a couple of potential catalysts ahead.

Catalysts Ahead

The ETH drivers include the upcoming launch of the Ethereum hard fork on the test network, which brings them one step closer to unveiling Constantinople, which in turn will lead to the integration of scaling technology like Casper. This is what the community is waiting for but whether it can overcome the massive wave of ICO selling remains to be seen.

FunFair has a couple of developments of its own to drive the price higher. When a blockchain project sticks to its roadmap, it’s a reason to celebrate the coin, and FunFair has been moving forward. FunFair just announced that the completion of the first phase of beta testing in which “community testers” tested the mettle of the games with thousands of hands of blackjack and spins of the roulette wheel.

The mainnet testing coincided with the launch of its first casino. FunFair secured an operating license in the Dutch island of Curacao and expects for the maiden FunFair-fueled casino to go live in September. Ethereum Co-Founder Joseph Lubin has identified gaming as a major driver of the network.

Bitcoin’s dominance is currently hovering at 55%, and the combined value of the crypto market is once again perched above $200 billion. If market strategists and technical signals are right, the next couple of months could be a game changer for crypto prices. ICE’s regulated exchange Bakkt will likely launch in November, while Fidelity is reportedly moving deeper into crypto. It’s just a matter of time for prices respond to the blockchain industry advancements and catch up.

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 60 rated postsGerelyn has been covering ICOs and the cryptocurrency market since mid-2017. She's also reported on fintech more broadly in addition to asset management, having previously specialized in institutional investing. She owns some BTC and ETH.




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