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Analysis

The Damage Done

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The total damage from the WannaCry virus has been counted. See, the thing most people don’t know about Bitcoin is that it’s only pseudo-anonymous. The nature of the blockchain allows everyone to see all transactions clearly, that’s what makes it effective.

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So when the WannaCry pirates asked for ransom in bitcoin, they actually had to publish their wallet ID being used to receive the transaction. Overall, three wallets were used. For your convenience, I will publish them here. Please don’t send any money to them!!

13AM4VW2dhxYgXeQepoHkHSQuy6NgaEb94
12t9YDPgwueZ9NyMgw519p7AA8isjr6SMw
115p7UMMngoj1pMvkpHijcRdfJNXj6LrLn

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You can see every transaction made to and from these wallets on blockchain.info. The folks at bitinfocharts.com were kind enough to compile this graph showing the total balance of all three.

Needless to say, cybercrime fighters around the world will be watching these wallets very closely and if these hoodlums ever try to convert their ill-gotten gains to real money there will be jail time in their future.

The law can be very forgiving to white collar criminals. The people responsible for the 2008 crisis are still walking free. Hackers, not so much. When you add that these guys interfered with hospital operations and government offices… dun dun dun.

Stay safe people. Don’t click any links unless you know exactly what it is.

Mati

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of May 18th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Market Overview

The damage done to the stock market by President Trump, on the other hand, is still being assessed.

The Trump-appointed deputy attorney general, Rod Rosenstein, has selected Ex-FBI director Robert Mueller to act as a special investigator into the alleged Trump-Putin connection.

For those wondering if Trump tried to have Russia interfere with the US elections, this video should make it perfectly clear. What you’re seeing there is candidate Trump publicly asking Russia to hack into the then Secretary of State’s personal Email.

Sure, those Emails were probably reeking with abuse of power and corruption to the highest degree, but I digress.

The latest drama in Washington was too much for even the stock markets to ignore. The sound of the opening bell on Wall Street yesterday was met with a 180 point drop in the Dow Jones and by the end of the day, the damage totaled about 1.78% for the big index.

Virtually all sectors got smashed…

Volatility is finally up off the floor with the VIX index closing at 15.50. It’s far from the 22 points we saw during the US election and the 25 points seen on the night of the Brexit referendum but at least we’re off the all-time record low, which was set last Monday, May 8th below 10 points.

Oil seems to have lost control of this market. The inventories did in fact show supplies in the US declining slightly, which caused a nice spike up on Crude Oil. However, the price has already returned to about the same place it was before the announcement and as we saw in the pie chart above, the energy sector was down by the end of the day as risk off sentiment prevailed in the market.

In addition to the stocks, commodities, currencies, and bonds that have been damaged by the White House, the expectation of a speedy rate hike has dropped as well.

For the past two weeks, the market was pricing in a 90 to 100% chance that the Fed will hike rates on June 15th. This morning, that number was down to 82%.

Now, 82% is still enough for the Fed to make a move, but certainly if Trump doesn’t improve his image and quick, that number along with the US Dollar could certainly move lower.

Eye on Cryptos

The pace of growth for the cryptocurrencies has remained steady. Over the past 10 days, the total market cap of all digital assets has risen on average by $1 Billion per day.

Until yesterday, most of that new money was going straight into Ripple. In this next chart, we can see the market cap of Ripple rising from $5 Billion to a peak of more than $16.5 Billion yesterday.

However, over the last 12 hours, it is coming down fast and allowing room for other assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum to take some of their market-share back.:)

Let’s keep an eye on it over the next 6 to 8 hours to confirm or reverse the trend.

Have a spectacular day ahead.

This content is for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered investment advice or an investment recommendation.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you’re prepared to lose.

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 69 rated postsSenior Market Analyst at Etoro.com.




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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. D1DT

    May 18, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    Thanks Mati. Very informative overview of the market!

  2. corporate_citizen

    May 18, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    Can Bitcoin address mixers and exchanges such as Shapeshift track transactions at the behest of law enforcement?

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Analysis

Long-Term Cryptocurrency Analysis: Bitcoin and Ethereum Break-Out of Declining Trends

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The altcoin-led rally continued since our previous look at the long-term charts, and the major coins all confirmed a new short-term uptrend. Most of the largest digital currencies also broke out from their broad declining trends, as the total value of the segment is now more than 50% above the level around the correction low.

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BTC/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

The overall picture remained positive, with only Bitcoin’s weakness causing headaches for crypto bulls, as the most valuable coin is hovering close to declining trendline that dominated trading throughout the first quarter of the year.

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Despite the short-term weakness, BTC is still among the stronger majors from a long-term perspective, and with the secular uptrend clearly being intact, long-term investors should hold on to their coins and add to their holdings on the short-term pullbacks.

Crucial resistance is still just ahead between $9000-$9200, with further levels at $10,000 and $11,300, while support is found near $8400, $7650, and in the $6150-$6250 zone.

ETH/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

Ethereum built upon its recent relative strength, and the coin broke out convincingly above the declining trendline, and reached the next key resistance zone between $625 and $640 before the momentum of the move stalled.

While there are still several strong zones ahead, with the closest ones near $725 and $845, barring a quick move back below the declining trendline, the coin should continue the advance. With the long-term MACD still just in neutral territory, long-term investors could add to their holdings during short-term corrections, with key support levels at $500, $450, and $400.

(more…)

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 230 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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Recommendations

Trade Recommendation: Micron Technology

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Technical Overview

  • Micron Technology has experienced a 6.5-fold increase since May 2016. During this 2-year period, the stock found support at its intermediate-term trendline on numerous occasions (green trendline and arrows in Figure 1).
  • From the last retest of the intermediate-term support (last green arrow), the stock moved sharply higher, carried by a steeper support (violet trendline). The same trendline served as a resistance for two weeks in March 2018, when it was retested from below (last two violet arrows).
  • Today (April 23), the stock is breaking below its short-term support (orange trendline), after failing to remain above its 50 SMA on Friday (not shown).

Figure 1. MU Daily Chart

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Implications

  • By the time its correction is over, the stock is expected to have retested the intermediate-term support (green trendline). If the decline is severe and swift, the stock may bounce off the $40 level (i.e. target is the higher of $40 and the green trendline).
  • The stock’s 2018 Resistance (the trendline connecting the March 21 and April 18 highs) is expected to serve as a resistance (red trendline).

Outlook

  • Bearish as long as the stock is trading below its 2018 Resistance.
  • Neutral if the stock moves above the 2018 Resistance.

Trade Recommendation

  • Short at current levels ($48.75 – $49.25)
  • Target: Higher of $40 and green trendline
  • Stop: A close above the red trendline (currently at approximately $53.35, falling by roughly 40 cents/day).

 Benefits of Recommended Trade

  • A favourable risk-reward profile (roughly 1 : 2.25).
  • A sloping-down resistance used as a stop, resulting in an improving risk-reward profile of the trade as time goes by. The steep negative slope of the 2018 Resistance may potentially lead to a situation where the trade is “unsuccessful” (i.e. the stop is hit first before the target), however, still profitable. This is so as the 2018 Resistance will already be below current prices by mid-May (i.e. may get stopped out at a lower price than when the short was initiated).

Disclosure: No position

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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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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Analysis

Bitcoin Cash: Suddenly A Star Performer

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Just look at what has been happening in the prices of bitcoin and bitcoin cash.  Between December, the king of crypto fell some 65%. Since the April 1 low, bitcoin has partially recovered, gaining 31%.  Bitcoin cash really took it on the chin losing 80% in the December-April period. However, since then, BCH has been a digital darling, gaining 80%.  This ranks among the top crypto performers so far in the month of April. What’s behind the move?

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What We Have Been Missing

I have a confession to make.  For the past year bitcoin cash has pretty much flown under my radar. Here is a best efforts excuse.  Bitcoin cash has only been in existence since last August. During this time there have been so many ICOs flying around that keeping up with something which sounded like just another name for the original king of crypto didn’t seem all that important.

That was a mistake because there is quite a difference between the original and bitcoin cash.  And if it continues, someday bitcoin cash will be king. Here is what I am getting at.

All cryptocurrencies face certain limits when it comes to scaling. It is a more complex issue than simply adding more transactions to the blockchain.  A whole lot of the Gen III companies are attempting to come up with a solution to minimize the time required to confirm a block of transactions without blowing up fees.

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Bitcoin has the distinction of suffering the worst of both slow speed and bloated fees.  Back at the price peak last December transactions were limited to fewer than 10 per second while fees shot up to more than $30.  

Anyone buying bitcoin during that period for investment purposes probably didn’t care. After all, by last December, bitcoin had appreciated over 7,000%.  But if you wanted to use Bitcoin to buy a $4.50 Latte or a $75 Cuisinart coffee maker from Overstock.com, logic told you to forget about it.

Small Transaction R Us

This is where bitcoin cash came into being.  BCH became a hard fork of bitcoin, meaning that it uses the bitcoin protocols except for one important difference.  Each BCH block initially contained 8 megabits compared with just one for BTC. The whole point of BCH is to create a currency that in a medium of exchange rather than simply an investment device.

Back around August, the average transaction fee for BTC was about $0.70 (BCH was $0.08) so fees were completely overshadowed by the fixation in bitcoin’s skyrocketing price.

The Lessons From December

Long before the explosion in bitcoin fees last December work was underway on the Lightning Network.  When fully implemented by the Bitcoin community, it will reduce the gap between itself and bitcoin cash.  But that could be completely illusory based on last weeks announcement.

Around May 15 bitcoin cash plans to create a hard fork that will increase block size four fold to 32 bits.  Word of this has to be one big reason for the bitcoin cash price outperforming many of its peers. At least for the time being, BCH will have a considerable advantage both in terms of confirmation speed and fees.  

According to Bitinfocharts, current bitcoin fees are 0.199 compared with 0.0035 for bitcoin cash, while mining profits are about equal. This is a data point that is most impressive because the BCH maximize block size has yet to be increased.  BCH is attracting smaller average transaction size. In other words, their plan is working.

The Unpaved Road

The rapid price appreciation and the hard fork announcement will draw attention to BCH.  This is enough to make it more attractive than BTC. One thing to remember. If bitcoin cash developers intend to become a medium of exchange, a currency for the masses, they have a long way to go.  

All digital currencies face the same challenge.  Bitcoin claims acceptance by more than 10,000 merchants including 14 large retailers like Overstocked and Microsoft.  Bitcoin cash lays claim to just 429. Either way, fewer than 5% of all retailers accept cryptocurrencies and we suspect that less the 2% of all retail transactions are represented by any of these currencies.

Even so, bitcoin cash is suddenly taking on a far more exciting role in the crypto game so don’t be surprised to see this continue for a while.

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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4.3 stars on average, based on 61 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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