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The Rally Continues: Bitcoin Market Cap Bounces Back to $200 Billion

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The past week has seen an incredible rebound for bitcoin, as the world’s largest cryptocurrency has regained 30% of its value to lead the market higher.

Bitcoin Price Levels

The cryptocurrency advanced sharply Tuesday, hitting a rally high of $11,770.87. It closed the day at $11,698.86, having gained more than 36% over the past five days. The coin was last seen trading around $11,357 for a market cap of $194 billion. The total capitalization briefly crossed $200 billion on Tuesday.

With the latest rally, bitcoin has taken the global cryptocurrency market past $500 billion. In doing so, it has claimed roughly 39.5% of the total market share, up from a low near 32% in January.

Trade volumes have also risen sharply, and as of Tuesday, nearly $10 billion in bitcoin was transacted on global exchanges. Bitfinex, OKEx and Binance saw the largest percentage of the daily transactions.

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The Return of the Bull Market

Bitcoin is benefiting from a myriad of forces that, when combined, point to higher prices for the cryptocurrency. Sentiment has improved markedly after government regulators in the United States and South Korea adopted a friendlier attitudes toward digital assets.

South Korea’s financial regulator recently said the country has no problem with “normal” cryptocurrency trading. The comments mirror earlier statements made by Hong Nam-ki, who heads the Office for Government Policy and Coordination.

“I can assure you that the government has consistently maintained a close and careful approach to market conditions and international trends, keeping all possible means open,” he said in a statement last week.

In the United States, Wyoming recently approved two blockchain bills that could make the state one of the more accepting jurisdictions for cryptocurrency. The first bill, HB 70, defines utility tokens as neither traditional fiat money nor securities, which may give startups more leeway in ICO fundraising. The second bill, HB 19, exempts bitcoin from the 2003 Wyoming Money Transmitter Act.

The Senate has also proposed Bill 111 that would exempt cryptocurrency from taxes. This regulation is intended to boost Wyoming’s digital currency market, which may impact everything from economic growth to job creation. Some analysts have also speculated that the passing of such a bill would set a precedent for other jurisdictions still jostling with formulating cryptocurrency regulation of their own.

As bitcoin climbs above $12,000, investors may feel a greater sense of urgency to enter the market. This so-called “fear of missing out” has been a major driver of cryptocurrencies over the past 12 months.

CNBC “Fast Money” trader Brian Kelly recently recommended to his audience that they purchase March bitcoin futures at $12,000 with a target of $18,000. Based on this recommendation, Kelly anticipates a 50% gain for the cryptocurrency. Futures operated by CBOE and CME Group recently reached their highest levels in three weeks.

Of course, a bull market in bitcoin does not exclude volatility. Bitcoin is expected to remain highly volatile even as capital flows back into the market.

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 455 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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Analysis

Crypto Update: Coins Pop Higher as Consolidation Continues

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Trading activity increased in the major coins today, amid a mixed news flow, and for now, bulls scored a small victory following last week’s bearish price action. Bitcoin, Ethereum and most of the largest digital currencies gained several percents, despite the weekend’s deterioration, and although the technical setup didn’t change significantly, an immediate breakdown has been averted.

The discouraging BIS report that has been making waves today wasn’t enough to push the coins below support, but for now, the short-term strength left the trading range intact with the primary resistance levels still keeping a lid on prices. Given the uncertain long-term picture, the coming weeks will be crucial for the largest coins and the whole segment alike, with Bitcoin being in the center of attention after its long period of relative weakness.

BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

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Bitcoin held up above the April low, despite the bearish short-term picture, and the coin the highest price level in a week, breaching the $6750 level in the process. While the most valuable coin fared relatively well today, it clearly remains a laggard from a broader perspective, and it is still trading in a declining short-term trend, with several strong resistance levels just ahead.

The $5850 is the key from a long-term perspective, with further support levels at $6500 and $6275 and resistance ahead at $7000 and $7350.

Bearish Rotation Among Altcoins

ETH/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

On a negative note, the leaders of the latest rally were among the weaker coins today, and that is a sign of bearish rotation in a segment, and until major resistance levels are broken traders shouldn’t enter new positions here. Ethereum managed to rally above $500 yet again, but it remained below week’s bounce high, leaving the trading range intact, while the declining short-term trend is also still dominant.  Strong resistance is still ahead between $555 and $575, while support below $500 is found at $450, $400, and $380.

EOS/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

EOS, which is one of the strongest majors technically speaking also edged higher today, but it remains stuck in the declining short-term pattern, and below key support/resistance zone near $12. The coin is well below last week’s high and until a confirmed short-term trend change, traders shouldn’t enter positions here.

Featured image from Shutterstock

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 276 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

New York Approval of Crypto Trading App Ignites Price Rally for Bitcoin, Altcoins

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The cryptocurrency market on Monday added $13 billion in the span of one hour after New York’s Department of Financial Services granted Square a digital currency license.

Square Cash App Approved for BitLicense

San Francisco-based startup Square, Inc. announced Monday it has been granted approval by New York regulators to launch its cryptocurrency trading platform in the state. The new crypto service will be offered through Square’s Cash app, which has seven million monthly active users, based on the company’s first-quarter earnings call.

The announcement was confirmed by Square in conjunction with an official press release issued by New York’s Department of Financial Services (DFS).

“DFS is pleased to approve Square’s application and welcomes them to New York’s expanding and well-regulated virtual currency market.,” Superintendent Maria Vullo said in a statement. “DFS continues to work in support of a vibrant and competitive virtual currency market that connects and empowers New Yorkers in a global marketplace while ensuring strong state-regulatory oversight is in place.”

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Bitcoin buying launched for Cash users last fall; by January, most users had access to crypto trading platform. Square announced in March it would seek a BitLicense to bring bitcoin trading to the nation’s second-most populous state.

Cash App has reportedly generated $34 million in profit through its bitcoin trading service.

Bitcoin, Cryptos Pop

Cryptocurrencies added roughly $13 billion in value between 12:22 UTC and 13:27 UTC, bringing the total market cap to $289.5 billion. Total trading volumes spiked by more than $1.5 billion over the same period.

At press time, the total value of all cryptos in circulation was $287.1 billion, according to CoinMarketCap. That represents a gain of about $23 billion from last week’s bear market low.

Bitcoin reached a high of $6,781.14 following the Square Cash announcement. It was last seen trading around $6,716, according to BarCart data.

The largest cryptocurrency by capitalization showed signs of breaking down earlier in the day as prices approached $6,300 on the major exchanges. BTC/USD was little changed over the weekend as the bulls failed to extend last week’s modest relief rally.

Despite the latest gain, bitcoin remains about 10% lower for June and is down more than 50% year-to-date.

As an asset class, altcoins rose more than $8 billion Monday afternoon. At $172.2 billion, digital currencies outside of bitcoin represent 60% of the total market.

All coins within the top-ten reported gains. Percentage-wise, Tron was the best performer, rallying 5.4% to $0.045. Ethereum jumped 3.4% to $517.46. Bitcoin cash added nearly 4% to trade at $884.28.

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 455 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

Crypto Critics: Fractured Facts

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I have another confession.  As a long time investor, I believed in the theory of efficient markets. This basically means that every participant in the market has immediate and complete access to all information facts like price, earnings and other data.  

I made the mistake in applying this theory to cryptocurrencies. Lately, this has been a mistake.  Yes it is true that anyone with the time and interest can go about gathering all the facts. But are all facts telling the truth or are they really fractured facts?  Either way they are dictating investor thinking and that is a key to this market.

According to reports on MarketWatch, crypto prices slumped on the release of a 24 page report from the Bank of International Settlements. BIS stated that cryptocurrencies suffered from “a range of shortcomings that would prevent cryptocurrencies from ever fulfilling the lofty expectations that prompted an explosion of interest — and investment — in the would-be asset class”.

The BIS is no small town organization. They serve as a central bank for other banks and they have been doing this since 1930.  When the BIS talks, people take things they say very seriously.

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The doomsday article released Sunday paints an accurate picture of the state of cryptocurrencies today. But what about tomorrow?  Most everyone is familiar with the issues of speed, security and energy consumption, not to mention regulation. But for the BIS to conclude that none of this problems will ever be solved is down right nieve.  It is the equivalent of declaring in 2001 that the Internet was doomed because 90% of users were connect on dial up modems.

Rotten Research

The BIS report is not the first fracturing of facts presented by well regarded organizations that is scaring investors. Remember back in May? We were treated to the research headline: Bitcoin Futures Caused The Crypto Market Crash according to Federal Papers.

Both the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and a Stanford University professor released a report concluding the launch of bitcoin futures last December contributed to the ensuing price collapse. Pretty far fetched stuff, and here is why.

Bitcoin futures trading began on December 10. BarChart.com shows the CME traded a measly 932 contracts while the CBOE handled 3,887.  Of that total some 2,828 contracts were still “Open Contracts” on December 29th leaving just 1991 coins to do all the harm. During that final week of December over 1.4 million coins were traded. The findings were simply flawed.

Much like the BIS, when the Federal Reserve speaks, people believe they have done their homework carefully.  Throw in Stanford and that adds further weight to this conclusion.

And Then There Are Those Other Facts

And then there was the revelation last week that, much of bitcoin’s 2017 boom was market manipulation, research says.  In a huge 66 page report it was claimed that at least half of the 2017 rise in bitcoin prices was due to coordinated price manipulation using tether.

The author, University of Texas at Austin finance professor John Griffin, argues that Tether was used to buy bitcoin at key moments when it was declining, which helped “stabilize and manipulate” the cryptocurrency price. BTW: this is the job of the specialist on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Professor Griffin appears to have done an excellent job correlating events without much consideration for the economics involved.  According to Bloomberg’s Aaron Brown, for Professor Griffin to be correct in his assertion that tether pushed up bitcoin prices four basis points per 100 bitcoin, Bitfinex would have needed to spend a boatload to inflate the cryptocurrency.  With Bitcoin at $10,000, for example, that means Bitfinex spends $1 million to push the price up to $10,004.

When you look at things from this perspective, Griffin’s findings look pretty absurd.

Look Closely At The Facts

These days with crypto psychology the worst since Mt. Gox in 2014, it seems like a good time for investors to capitalize on the fractured facts.  Technical analysis shows that cryptocurrencies bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and others are hovering around key support levels. It would not be shocking at anytime to find some academic study linking crypto to the common cold.  By the way, it is a fact that last years dramatic crypto price spike came right at the start of the flu season.

A far more relevant fact was last week’s announcement by the Securities and Exchange Commission that neither bitcoin or Ethereum were securities. Perhaps equally important is the conclusion that when ICO do not convey an equity ownership position, they too are considered in the same non-security category as bitcoin and Etherrun.  This is a fact.

What we do know is that crypto prices are as low as they have been since well before the spike last December.  Just as the markets recovered from Mt. Gox, the mindset of investors will recover and that is the key.

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 81 rated postsJames Waggoner is a veteran Wall Street analyst and hedge fund manager who has spent the past few years researching the fintech possibilities of cryptocurrencies. He has a special passion for writing about the future of crypto.




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