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Regulations and Crypto Havens: China and the Rest of the World

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China is no stranger to censorship and regulation.

Dubbed by most Western spectators as a ‘totalitarian regime’, the country’s government has been highly successful in their efforts to control the internet and digital economies – along with brick and mortar activities. This can be seen, for example, with government imposed obstructions preventing Chinese residents from accessing popular global social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook; replaced by Weibo (which, being based in China, has previously been subject to extreme government intervention).

It should come as no surprise then, that the government has decided to impose a blanket ban on the trading of cryptocurrencies by citizens and businesses within the country. This occurred last September, where government representatives additionally cited a need for the absolute centralization of all blockchain related activities.

When looking at some of the surrounding geographical areas, for example, countries within the South-East Asia region; we can see a great disparity in regulatory positions and implementations.

South Korea has been responsible for long-term FUD on the trading markets due to their inability to come to a consensus on how to regulate the crypto-economy, let alone how they would proceed in enforcing guidelines and legislation. Vietnam has, unsurprisingly, decided to go down the same road as China and has banned all cryptocurrencies as of the time of writing.

This has led many to question the hypothetical yet highly reasonable presumption that there could be a time in the future where heavy regulation and blanket crypto bans are commonplace across the globe. If this were to happen, could cryptocurrencies survive; and if so then what measures would have to be taken to ensure its survival as a legitimate, decentralized economy?

Crypto-flight and Crypto-havens

In China, the result has been a ‘crypto-flight’: where businesses and individuals who are heavily invested in the sector have relocated their businesses to Hong Kong avoid breaking the law. Examples of operational Hong Kong based crypto-companies include: OKEx, BTCC and Huobi-Pro.

Hong Kong is classed as a ‘Special Administrative Region’ which sits within the borders of the People’s Republic of China. This means that the area and its citizens enjoy special privileges such as political and economic autonomy.

One of the ways the region’s lawmakers have decided to use this power is to allow for decentralized cryptocurrency business, investment, and trading; whilst simultaneously seeking to regulate fraudulent blockchain activity / enterprise.

If there were to be a situation somehow (and it’s highly unlikely) where Hong Kong were to decide to implement similar rules to their mainland brothers, then the result would most likely be further flight away from the country by cryptos.

Singapore would be a likely candidate due to their liberal approach to cryptocurrencies, in addition to the geographical proximity to China / Hong Kong.

Furthermore, if this were to continue to spread across Asia or the West; then we would be likely to see a consolidation of the population of investors and crypto countries to a smaller number of countries which would subsequently be ‘Crypto Havens’. This could resemble the impact that extensive taxation on creating what are currently known as ‘tax havens’.

Will China Change its Tone?

No matter how frustrated the mainland Chinese Government might get from missing out on this huge economy, there is little they can do politically to pressure the Hong Kong government into implementing similar rules.

The area is simply one of the highest grossing financial areas in the entire country, and as such acts as a central trade hub for the nation. If its sovereignty were to be threatened, then many of the businesses and individuals who are contributing to this wealth are likely to leave themselves (crypto or otherwise).

Conversely, it is much more likely that China will eventually decide to repeal their overarching bans over time. Despite banning the tech, it is highly likely that the government is not ignorant to the added value it could bring to their country’s economy.

Once cryptocurrencies are better understood by governments and established general tech experts in general; don’t be surprised if you see them slowly retreat these laws in favor of regulations and taxes informed by a matured expertise.

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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Altcoins

Dash Price Analysis: DASH/USDT Downside Risks Linger Despite Trust Wallet Support Announcement

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  • DASH/USDT price action is moving within a narrowing range formation, subject to further downside risks.
  • Trust Wallet, Binance-owed crypto wallet provider, announces support of DASH.

Price Behavior

DASH/USDT has been trading within a $6 range for the tenth session in a row, at the time of writing. The upper part of this range should be noted at $73. Looking to the downside, the lower support of the formation is seen at $67. The price, like many of its peers within the cryptocurrency market, is stuck within a narrowing range block. They are all currently demonstrating strong downside vulnerabilities, given the current behaviour.

This trading range came after a steep fall in the market last Thursday, 10th January. Double-digit losses were seen across the board after moving within a prior narrowing range formation. DASH/USDT had a strong run from 15th – 24th December, gaining as much as 81% within that time frame. Following the high print towards the latter part of that period, at $102.50, price cooling was seen and then begun to trade sideways.

Between 26th December 2018 – 9th January 2019, DASH/USDT was moving between a narrow $86 at the high and $73 at the low. This led to the explosive breakout to the downside, where the price dropped around 20% on 10th January.

Trust Wallet Supports Dash (DASH)

Trust Wallet, a mobile crypto wallet owned by Binance, announced earlier this week that it has added support for Dash. The announcement followed after just a week ago, when the wallet provider revealed the support of Litecoin (LTC), Bitcoin (BTC), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). In addition, the app also supports Ethereum (ETH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Tron (TRX) and others.

The team at Trust Wallet, upon their DASH support update, also left users somewhat excited about further announcements lined up. They stated, “Going forward, we will monitor the performance and stability of our Dash release very closely, and if everything works well, hopefully, we can surprise you with more new coins in the coming weeks!”

Technical Review – DASH/USDT

DASH/USDT daily chart.

A breakout of the key mentioned levels that make up either side of the range, $72 and $67, will likely determine the next committed trend. Firstly, in terms of the next major area of support south, eyes will be on the December low area, $58. To the north, drop supply remains heading into and just above the psychological $100 mark.

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 111 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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Bitcoin

Bitcoin’s Year of Accumulation

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Although bitcoin looks poised to extend its January losing streak to five consecutive years, 2019 will be a year of slow accumulation for the virtual currency, according to Eric Thies, a well-known technical analyst. In the meantime, traders can expect the bear market to reach its climax once a new yearly bottom is breached.

Accumulation Year

In promoting the view that 2019 will be an accumulation year for bitcoin, Thies directed our attention to the major bear trend that emerged in 2015. That was the year bitcoin exhibited significant volatility, albeit in a lower range. Following the latest breakdown in price, bitcoin could be in for a similar trading pattern this year.

“Similar to 2015, 2019 may be the year of accumulation,” Thies said, according to CCN. This means bitcoin is likely to be an attractive investment in $2,000-$4,000 range – even with wild swings priced in.

Bitcoin’s volatility regime has changed dramatically in the last two months. Following a period of unprecedented calm, volatility surged to nine-month highs in the back end of December. Volatility will likely remain a factor for the foreseeable future as the technical tug-of-war continues. More on this: Bitcoin Maintains Narrow Trading Range as Recovery Faces More Resistance.

Circulation Grows

That bitcoin will remain highly volatile is supported by the recent influx of digital currency into circulation. Anonymous owners of dormant bitcoin wallets have been trading with greater frequency since October, which means their activity may have predated the November price collapse.

Data from Flipside Crypto recently showed that long-dormant bitcoin wallets have accounted for about 60% of the market’s circulating supply in the last 30 days alone. What’s more, active bitcoin supply has increased by a whopping 40% since the summer. This, of course, feeds into higher expected volatility.

If that’s not enough, consider that 1,000 addresses hold 85% of available bitcoin. As Bloomberg recently noted, many of these holders remained on the sidelines during the 2017 bull run and its subsequent collapse. If dormant accounts are becoming active again, there’s good reason to suggest that the whales are looking to re-enter the market.

Not Overnight

It’s reasonable to expect that bitcoin will become more attractive at lower prices, especially as more institutional investors access the crypto market in the coming year. But that doesn’t mean the accumulation will happen overnight. Previous bear cycles have taught us that downtrends can stretch for 1-2 years before any noticeable accumulation takes place. The only difference this time is there are more people involved, and more eyeballs on the price.

Additional reading: Crypto Winter and the Fed?

To demonstrate bitcoin’s potential at current levels, and why 2019 will be an attractive year to boost one’s holdings, it’s worthwhile to reflect on the cryptocurrency’s yearly lows rather than its highs. Below is a quick snapshot of bitcoin’s yearly bottoms stretching all the way back to 2012:

  • 2012: $4
  • 2013: $65
  • 2014: $200
  • 2015: $185
  • 2016: $365
  • 2017: $780
  • 2018: $3,200

Traders tend to focus on bitcoin’s lack of new all-time highs as evidence that the market is going nowhere, but these figures clearly show that BTC is a solid investment at almost any period in the last seven years (of course, this isn’t the case if you bought during the peak of 2018).

Make no mistake: technical analysis and market sentiment clearly show there is more pain ahead for bitcoin and the broader cryptocurrency market. But as the long-term value proposition continues to hold, there’s strong reason to believe we haven’t seen the last bull market. In the meantime, 2019 prices could represent a unique buying opportunity for those who missed the boat two years ago.

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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4.7 stars on average, based on 743 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he leads content development for one of the world's foremost cryptocurrency resources. Over the past eight years Sam has authored more than 10,000 articles and over 40 whitepapers in the fields of labor market economics, emerging technologies, cryptocurrency and traditional finance. Sam's work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Contact: sam@hacked.com Twitter: @hsbourgi




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Altcoins

Lite.IM Surpasses Facebook In Race To Support Cryptocurrency Compatible Messenger

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Since the early part of 2018, crypto traders have been bombarded with bad news.  Hacks, broken promises, and overall lack of enthusiasm have resulted in huge losses.  But more than that, some promising cryptocurrencies just haven’t survived.  As traders look to the future, they should begin looking at projects that have the potential to disrupt industries and take them to the next level.  One company that has the potential to accomplish that is Zulu Republic (ZTX).

Zulu Republic is an ecosystem of blockchain tools and platforms, designed as a place where people, businesses, and organizations can thrive on their own terms.  The company’s stated mission is to advance the development of decentralized technologies, to promote human rights and empowerment around the globe, and to reduce the global digital divide.

Well the company is off to a great start with the development of Lite.IM.

What is Lite.IM? 

Lite.IM is a project aimed at expanding global cryptocurrency adoption.  With Lite.IM, users can send, receive, and manage Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), and the company’s native currency (ZTX), on Facebook Messenger, Telegram, and SMS (in the USA and Canada).  To get started managing these cryptocurrencies on the aforementioned platforms, users simply need to send a text-based command to the Lite.IM bot.  The commands are as follows:

Telegram:  @LiteIM_bot

Facebook Messenger:  @lite.im

SMS (USA and Canada only):  760-LITEIM-0

Competition with Facebook

On December 21st, 2018, Facebook announced that it was developing its own stable cryptocurrency that users would be allowed to exchange through its popular chat service, WhatsApp.  But while Facebook’s initial approach will target users based in India, Lite.IM is open to everyone in the world.  Further, Zulu Republic has previously mentioned that they expect to announce support for WhatsApp in the next few weeks.  It certainly appears as though Lite.IM has the upper hand here.  And that is before even addressing Facebook’s obvious privacy concerns.

When it comes to cryptocurrency, privacy and security have always been two issues at the forefront.  Given the rough year that Facebook has had in that regard, users must certainly be forgiven if they have trouble trusting the social media giant.  In September, 2018, Facebook announced that an attack on its computer network had exposed the personal information of nearly 50 million users.  Apparently, the hackers were able to exploit a feature in Facebook’s code to gain access to user accounts.  Even prior to this announcement, Facebook was already under Congressional scrutiny over revelations that a British analytics firm obtained access to private information from nearly 87 million Facebook users.  Not to mention Facebook’s rumored involvement with Russian election meddling.  Suffice it to say, it has been a tumultuous year for Facebook.

And while users may have concerns trusting Facebook’s ability to handle cryptocurrency data, they shouldn’t have those same concerns with Lite.IM.  Private keys are RSA encrypted with the user’s password.  Lite.IM will never ask for that information nor will it be stored.  Because of this, no third party will ever have access to that valuable information.

Conclusion

The truth of the matter is that Facebook is an absolute giant and has grown at an extraordinary rate since its initial public offering.  Facebook has hired some incredible talent, from executive positions to marketing to development.  And while one should never count them out, I simply wouldn’t be able to trust them with all of the recent issues.  Perhaps in time, after regaining the public’s trust, users could once again look to Facebook as a leader.

Fortunately, users have another strong and dependable option.  Lite.IM will allow users all over the world to manage popular cryptocurrencies via their favorite messenger platform.  Users should continue to stay tuned for future developments.

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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