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Will Ethereum Continue Rally Ahead Of Constantinople Hard Fork?

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“Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.”  One of my favorite quotes from “Friday Night Lights” is a great way to describe the new year.  2018 was rough, brutal, and painful.  But with a new year comes new opportunities.  Crypto markets have started off strong during the first week of January.  Bitcoin gained nearly 5% on Sunday and now trades at approximately $4,060.  The broader crypto market has also followed suit as several notable coins have generated substantial gains.  Those coins include:

  • Ripple (XRP) with a 3% gain
  • Litecoin (LTC) with a 10% gain
  • Stellar (XLM) with a 5% gain
  • Ethereum (ETH) with a 2% gain

While the gains are a great way to bring in the new year, the market is still very cautious regarding the next step.  For cryptocurrencies to truly break out of the current bear market, they likely need to reach a market valuation of $230 billion.  Bitcoin would also need to trade at approximately $6,000.  So, based on today’s levels, there is still substantial work left to do.

Ethereum Hard Fork

Binance has just announced plans to support the Ethereum Constantinople Hard Fork which is currently scheduled for January 16th.  Traders need to be reminded that January 16 is the expectation, but nothing is set in stone.  When asked about the firmness of the data, Peter Szilagyi, an Ethereum core developer had this to say: “We can just mid-January, it doesn’t make a difference if we decide on a date or not.  We can always postpone.”

Ethereum has already had to delay the Constantinople upgrade once before after developers detected some errors on the testnet platform.  Given the complexity of the upgrade, it wouldn’t be a surprise if an additional delay was necessary.

Is the Hard Fork Necessary?

In a word, yes.  There are a few issues at play here.  The first is the “difficulty bomb.”  The difficulty bomb is the term used to indicate the increasing level of mining difficulty that results in an increased amount of time required to mine a new block on the Ethereum blockchain.  Block times are expected to begin increasing this month and could hit 30-second block times by May.

Some traders may be wondering why this “bomb” was put in place.  It’s a bit complex but essentially was designed as a deterrent for miners, who may opt to continue with Proof of Work (miners compete directly against each other), even as the blockchain transitions to Proof of Stake (where rewards are based on staking).  With the bomb in place, Ethereum will need to undergo regular network upgrades.

The Constantinople Upgrade

Constantinople is a system-wide upgrade that was enacted at the end of August, 2018.  The upgrade includes five different Ethereum improvement proposals (EIPs).  After the proposals are released on Ethereum, the blockchain will be permanently altered with new backwards-incompatible upgrades.

This essentially means that the network of computers that run Ethereum software must either update or continue running independently.

There is no doubt that hard forks have caused a great deal of squabbles in the past.  The most notable of which occurred with the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) hard fork.  Roger Ver, known as “Bitcoin Jesus” and the most prominent supporter of Bitcoin ABC, took a position in favor of the new software upgrade.  On the opposite side, Craig Wright, who claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto, was in favor of expanding the maximum block size from 32MB to 128MB.  ABC appears to have won that war.

Ethereum Rally Can Continue

Ethereum has had a monster rally over the past 30 days, gaining more than 80%.

So, while Ethereum miners are likely quite anxious as we approach the hard fork, the broader market appears to be quite fond of it.  I expect the rally to continue as we approach January 16th.

One risk is that if developers announce another delay.  A short delay probably wouldn’t have a major impact on price, but a delay of any meaningful length could lead to a selloff.  Traders looking to initiate a short-term trade may want to make use of stop limit trades.

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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Power Ledger (POWR) Reaps Benefits of Good-Guy Image with 45% Weekly Growth

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Power Ledger (POWR), the blockchain-based democratizer of the energy industry, gained 45% on its value over the past week. While 68% of daily trades came from Korean markets, it was Western eyes which were focused on Power Ledger this week.

Coverage in Huffington Post, and a nomination from Newsweek in their ‘Blockchain Impact Awards’, both added to POWR’s growing reputation of one of crypto’s good guys.

Power Ledger’s Good Rep

Coming hot out the gates with a plan to democratize the energy sector by cutting out third-party middlemen, Power Ledger got off to a promising start when it launched in late 2017.

Only a month or so after trading commenced, POWR got swept up in the altcoin pump of January 2018 and charged ahead to 3,919% gains, and an all-time high of $2.01.

Power Ledger’s aim to put (literal) power back in the hands of the average citizen made it an instant media darling. Its reputation as one of blockchain’s good guys, or gals, may also have been helped by the media focus on co-founder Jemma Green – one of the few women currently involved prominently in the blockchain space.

Blockchain Impact Awards

The first ever Blockchain Impact Awards, held by Newsweek, lists Power Ledger as one of the nominees for the upcoming ceremony.

“Newsweek is working with global experts in the blockchain world to present the first ever Blockchain Impact Awards. The awards will recognize entrepreneurs and enterprises that are developing blockchain applications to accomplish a social good.”

Power Ledger is up against 24 other blockchain projects – none of which are as instantly recognizable as the still fairly unknown Power Ledger. The next most known project among the nominees would perhaps be Akoin – the project founded by U.S-Senegalese rapper, Akon.

Huffington Post Likes Power Ledger

Power Ledger was given the spotlight in the Huffington Post before its ICO was even over, back in 2017. This week saw another focus article dedicated to Power Ledger, this time covering co-founder Jemma Green’s position as a female role-model in the blockchain industry.

Yet the promise of Power Ledger may run deeper yet. A single mother of two when she launched Power Ledger, Green has already met with the likes of Richard Branson and Elon Musk – both of whom have shown interest in the project.

Power Ledger Price

The last seven days have seen POWR wake up after a long and painful descent through 2018. From a weekly low of $0.070057 seven days ago, POWR surged 45% up to Friday morning’s price point of $0.102010.

The late night peak of $0.112617 took weekly gains to 60%, however much of that faded away by the time Western traders woke up for the day. The recent daily volume peak of $15 million is the highest in almost three months, with the POWR/KRW trade to thank for 68% of it.

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 123 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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What is Optimal Shelf Availability Token (OSA) – And Is it Worth Your Time?

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Optimal Shelf Availability Token (OSA) splashed onto the first page of CoinMarketCap this week when its token circulation stats were updated.

While the coin price remained the same, the token’s market cap jumped 200% in a flash – possibly a result of locked-in ICO funds suddenly becoming available, although different sources report varying circulations at this time.

So what is Optimal Shelf Availability Token? Is it worth your time, or is it just another shitcoin with a ridiculous name?

Optimal Shelf Availability Token

Well, the answer might surprise you. At first glance, OSA actually seems like one of the more promising projects to pop up in recent years – and that’s coming from such a cold-hearted cynic as myself. The team’s self-description sounds common enough:

“OSA is a decentralized, AI-driven blockchain platform that collects and analyzes data from retailers, manufacturers, consumers and open sources real-time.”

The first thing you notice as you land on the project website is a claim that such global brands as Coca-Cola, L’Oreal and Danone already use OSA’s services. As you scroll down, you realise that Optimal Shelf Availability Token is targeting the retail supply-chain industry – and that those claims about Coca-Cola and co are actually…kind of true!??!

Well, for six months the Russian wing of the Coca-Cola HBC (Hellenic Bottling Company) rolled out the OSA tech in a number of retail stores. Over the span of the six-month pilot program, sales increased by 10% – as covered in this report.

When L’Oreal initiated the pilot, sales also increased within a two-month period, but were actually down for the rest of the experiment compared to the control group. More can be read here.

Manga & Marketing

OSA is the first crypto project I’ve seen that comes with a manga comic dramatizing its use-case – two comics, actually. The professionalism of the website compared to some of the tokens recently reviewed on Hacked is night and day. Multiple technical documents are made available for public consumption, including several whitepapers, annual and quarterly reports, and research papers.

The project’s Bitcointalk forum page was launched last April, and is currently 61 pages long. Contributions from the team are regular, and an extension of the bounty program was recently initiated to celebrate the token’s ascension through the rankings.

All of this can seem great at first sight – but, like a thirsty man in the desert, when you’ve been deprived of nutrition for so long, just about anything is going to look good compared to the mass of shitcoins we’re constantly exposed to.

The level of professionalism, and amount of goodies, on the website almost makes me suspicious. Like the polished veneer is only there to compensate for other shortcomings. But that’s coming from a tired mind, grown weary from having its cynicism confirmed on so many occasions.

OSA Price

Despite the recent ascent in the past week, OSA lost 17.98% in the previous twenty-four period, falling from $0.045754 down to $0.037524.

The Bibox exchange processed over 98% of daily trades via OSA/ETH and OSA/BTC, with CoinEgg making up the rest of the $1.3 million daily volume.

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 123 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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Stellar Price Analysis: Grayscale Announces XLM Based Trust; XLM/USD Stuck Within Bearish Structure

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  • Global digital asset management firm, Grayscale, has announced an investment vehicle based around XLM.
  • XLM/USD is moving within the confinements of a bearish pattern structure, subject to a breakout south.

XLM/USD has been subject to very narrow and choppy trading, which has been going on for the past eight sessions now. Price action is moving within a range-block formation, which is seen across the board with several of its peers. This type of behavior does indicate of some potential vulnerabilities to the downside.

The current consolidation mode taken up came into play after a prior period of range-trading, which saw a deep breakout on 10th January. XLM/USD had plummeted by a hefty 20% to its lowest levels seen since 17th December. Despite the mid-December bull run, which was seen to the end of the month, it has not escaped the bear market. Therefore, bull rallies continue to be sold with some force by the bears.

Grayscale Stellar Lumens Trust

Grayscale Investments, a global digital asset management organization, has announced the launch of an investment vehicle based on Stellar Lumens (XLM). This is aimed at giving investors exposure to the cryptocurrency XLM. It is the sixth largest by market cap, just over the $2 billion mark, at the time of writing.

The asset management company tweeted via their official account, “We are excited to announce two big developments! First, today marks the launch of Grayscale Stellar Lumens Trust! Investors can now gain exposure to the price movement of XLM through a traditional investment vehicle.”

Grayscale’s Managing Director, Michael Sonnenshein, noted that this Stellar product that they have introduced was brought in on the back of investor demand. Furthermore, he details that Grayscale’s push to offer investors exposure to “established blockchain projects with substantial traction and resources.” Sonnenshein lastly concluded by noting he is bullish on Stellar and the real use cases that it brings.

Technical Review – XLM/USD

XLM/USD daily chart. Price action is moving within triangular structure.

Price action is currently moving within a triangular pattern structure. XLM/USD has been trading within this since the start of December. The lower support was tested to the downside on 14th December at around $0.094000-$0.093500 prior to the big bounce. Life kicked back into the bulls, forcing the rally up to the tracking resistance, around $0.131500. Furthermore, the pattern has further been confirmed, with several tests to the lower and upper acting trend lines.

Lastly, in terms of the described structure, it can also be perceived as a bearish pennant formation, which again point to downside. Support is currently tracking around the $0.107000 area, and a failure to hold will see the December low retested to the downside, $0.093500. Immediate resistance can be observed at $0.120000-$0.1215000.

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 110 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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