Blockchain Capital’s Bogart: Looking For The ‘Next Bitcoin’ Is A Dangerous Game To Play

Blockchain Capital partner Spencer Bogart discussed the current state of the cryptocurrency market with Bloomberg’s Emily Chang and Joe Weisenthal on Monday, and Bogart’s role was basically to explain why he’s still bullish on the crypto ecosystem in the face of collapsing prices.
“I still believe that programmable money is a multi-trillion dollar idea,” said Bogart.
Bogart went on to explain that bitcoin should be viewed separately from the initial coin offering (ICO) craze from last year and indicated that bitcoin is the right crypto asset to look at going forward.
ICOs and Bitcoin are Two Very Different Things
When the topic of ICOs came up during this discussion on Bloomberg, Bogart was quick to point out that these assets are very different from bitcoin.
“One thing I’d be careful of is conflating, kind of, all the tokens and ICOs that we’ve seen with bitcoin itself,” said Bogart. “I think that from the outside it’s easy to see those as one in the same, but from within the industry, they’re very different.”
Weisenthal agreed with Bogart’s point, but he also added that the market appears ignorant of these differences as the majority of crypto assets tend to move up and down with each other at the same time.
Bitcoin is Still the Right Play
When asked for specific assets or areas of the crypto ecosystem that are destined to thrive in the future, Bogart focused on bitcoin.
“For a lot of people, they’ve been hearing about bitcoin for so many years — they want to find what is that next bitcoin,” said Bogart. “Since the beginning of the time bitcoin people have been looking for that next bitcoin, I think that’s a dangerous game to play.”
To Bogart’s point, ether is down 80% against bitcoin since the peak of the hype around the alternative crypto asset’s potential to overtake bitcoin as the coin with the largest market cap, according to CoinMarketCap.
Bogart went on to talk about how network effects are extremely important when it comes to competing forms of money.
“Bitcoin does have the largest established network effect,” explained Bogart. “It is more than five times larger than the number two crypto, and it is excelling at the programmable value use case.”
Bogart added that they’re mainly focused on finding companies building on that programmable value use case at Blockchain Capital.
Source: Crypto Daily

Why Stellar Overtook Bitcoin Cash During The Crash

Stellar (XLM) recently overtook Bitcoin Cash (BCH) in market cap. This makes it the second coin to have gained in some way from the recent meltdown. The first coin is Ripple (XRP) which took the correction as an opportunity to wage war against Ethereum (ETH). So, Ripple (XRP) ended up replacing Ethereum (ETH) as the second largest coin by market cap and Stellar (XLM) ended up replacing Bitcoin Cash (BCH) as the fourth largest coin by market cap. Now, there is a reason why both of these coins moved against Ethereum (ETH) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). A lot of investors believe that in the event of a market crash that result in an absolutely wipeout, cryptocurrencies like Stellar (XLM) and Ripple (XRP) might still be around.
This belief has become even stronger recently as the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Civil War exposed how centralized Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) currently are. If both BTC and BCH are centralized, then investors would much prefer for opt for ‘centralized’ cryptocurrencies like Stellar (XLM) or Ripple (XRP) where in the event of a market meltdown they would at least be protected by the respective companies. Another strong belief that most investors in Stellar (XLM) and Ripple (XRP) have is that both of these cryptocurrencies have proven their mettle. Investors in XLM/USD know that it works. It is fast, cheap, efficient and scalable. It also has partners like IBM to aim for worldwide adoption of its technology. Even central banks might be open to the idea of using the Stellar blockchain to issue their cryptocurrencies.

The way both Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Bitcoin (BTC) have both been exposed recently for their current centralized control is very unfortunate. As we saw during the hash war, there were two parties with immense power that was quite capable of influencing the investment of the vast majority of cryptocurrency investors without their consent. Not only that, we saw some groups using investors’ mining power to fund their own wars. This was very unfortunate and it is certainly against Satoshi’s vision of Bitcoin (BTC). The early developers that worked on Bitcoin (BTC) have been very vocal describing how they came to believe Satoshi was not pulling a scam and was actually interested in creating peer to peer digital money without any financial or political motives.
Satoshi created a goldmine and allowed prospectors from across the globe to go mine for free. The best part is, Satoshi did not set any rules for any profits or rewards being paid to him/her, nor did they bother to sell any of their own Bitcoin (BTC) mined in the early days. According to developers that worked on Bitcoin (BTC), Satoshi used his own money and efforts to mine early blocks of Bitcoin (BTC). They still hold the Bitcoin (BTC) originally mined. The point is, Satoshi created a fair system that was supposed to do justice to the majority. However, it is unfortunate that early adopters out of their own greed have turned it into something horrible with their manipulation and underhanded methods. There is little doubt that Bitcoin (BTC) will eventually be accepted as universal digital money, but it is very unlikely to happen anytime soon which is why in the meantime coins like Stellar (XLM) will fill that space.
Source: Crypto Daily

Man Jailed For $3.5 Million Bitcoin Heist

A freelance journalist who used to do regular work with Newsweek, The Washington Post and The New York Times was forced to flee his career after he was caught involved in a number of scams. A new federal accusation says the journalist came into the rich world of cryptocurrency in an attempt to walk away with $3.5 million worth of Bitcoin.
Jerry Ji Guo has worked for a lot of big names for his age of 31. In 2010, he had been working for the newspapers, mentioned above when his career was cut short after being caught using his details to scam free merchandise and international travel from ersatz reporting subjects. Following this, Guo bounced back into New York’s ‘Silicon Alley’ which is a tech startup community which scored YCombinator seed funding for a group dating service called Grouper and lasted around eight months.
Since this time, we can now look at his LinkedIn profile and see that the Chinese-American graduate from Yale has been the owner and head chef of a burger bar in Beijing as well as founding a growth hacking marketing company in Atlanta. In 2017 he finally landed in the field in which seemed natural to him, cryptocurrency. He launched a $2 million ICO for a content sharing platform he claimed had partnerships in place with The Voice and American Idol.
Guo is now on a different path for the potential of up to 20 years. On the 9th November, FBI agents in Puerto Rico arrested the self-described serial blockchain entrepreneur on wire fraud charges for allegedly stealing around $3.5 million worth in cryptocurrency from startups which had initially hired him as a consultant.
Last week, a federal judge in San Juan ordered Guo’s transfer to California in order to go face to face with the eight counts of incitements which carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison by statute and at least five years three months under federal sentencing guidelines.
As reported by the Daily Beast:

“At the centre of the case is Guo’s career in the fast money world of initial coin offerings. An ICO is a blockchain-based fundraising strategy in which a company drums up capital by minting and selling digital tokens directly to the public.”

What are your thoughts? Let us know what you think down below in the comments!
Source: Crypto Daily

Alabama's Regulators Use Cryptographic Hashes to Preserve Evidence Regarding Crypto-Related Scams

Greg Bordenkircher, the first assistant at the United States Attorney’s office, has revealed that the US state of Alabama “issued nine orders shutting down businesses that [were] advertising” potentially fraudulent investment schemes, services, and products.
Bordenkircher added that Alabama has so far “got about 20 percent of all the active cease-and-desists” out of all 50 US states.
Source: Crypto Globe

Huobi Enter Political Sphere In China

The popular Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange, Huobi has created a Communist Party Committee, making it the first blockchain based company to do so in China.
The committee was created through a Huobi subsidiary called Beijing Lianhuo information service, which was recently registered as a business earlier this year. The subsidiary is owned by the founder of Huobi Li Lin who praised the launch of the committees, referring to it as a milestone for the firm, hailing the communists party for its friendly policies towards the blockchain industry, where Huobi has several businesses operating out of mainland China.
The founder of Huobi stated:

“Under the cordial care of the Party Working Committee of Haidian, the party branch of the Beijing Lianhuo Information Service Ltd. was gloriously established.”

One of the officials from the same place where Huobi’s blockchain organisation is based, Cao Zhou made a warning on the new branches roles.

“We must enhance the party’s political leadership, and carry out the party’s principles and policies in private enterprises.”

The laws of the communist party make it a necessity for an organisation with at least three communist party members as employees to set up a branch of the party – this especially applies for state-owned firms. While this directive doesn’t extend to private companies, a couple of privately owned firms have started to launch communist party committees in recent times as they look for ways to make stronger ties with the government.
As reported by CCN:

“The Chinese government has been friendly to blockchain while holding an anti-crypto stance. The Communist party had put a blanket ban on crypto earlier last year, leading to an exodus of cryptocurrency exchanges to neighbouring Asian countries.”

Huobi Group’s digital asset platform was one of the organisations which fled away from China before making a home in Singapore where it now operates. The Communist Party has also sent out a warning to relaxation sports in China and private venues not to take on any events that were related to cryptocurrency.
Earlier in the year, Alipay and WeChat were given a state order which forced them to close their accounts of cryptocurrency based merchants.
What are your thoughts? Let us know what you think down in the comments below!
Source: Crypto Daily

Bakkt CEO: Why Launch of Our Bitcoin Futures Contract Has Been Postponed to 24 January 2019

On Tuesday (20 November 2018), Kelly Loeffler, the Chief Executive Officer of Bakkt, a subsidiary of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), announced that the launch date for the Bakkt platform, which offers a physically-settled Bitcoin (USD) Daily Futures Contract, has been changed from 12 December 2018 to 24 January 2019, and explained the reasons for this delay.
Source: Crypto Globe

Ethereum Classic (ETC) Bears Haven’t Been This Confident In Weeks

The recent market selloff has once again pumped some life into Ethereum Classic (ETC) bears that were long presumed dead. The above daily chart for ETCUSDShorts presents a strong bearish setup. When the number of shorts plunged below the trend line, it was expected to create some fear among the bears because significant selloff was likely to follow. However, the recent market meltdown has led to an increased number of bears shorting Ethereum Classic (ETC) once again. The number of shorts is up more than 25% for the day but it has yet to test the trend line. That being said, it is expected to trade in the zone shown in red until Ethereum Classic (ETC) recovers.
The price of Ethereum Classic (ETC) dropped along with the rest of the market but we did see some signs of resilience. While most altcoins dropped almost 15% or higher Ethereum Classic (ETC) held its ground against such drops. However, ultimately it had to fall more with the rest of the market. That resulted in Ethereum Classic (ETC) breaking below $6 to form a new yearly low. It might have been quite unreasonable to expect an already undervalued cryptocurrency like Ethereum Classic (ETC) drop to $5 while coins like Ripple (XRP) and Stellar (XLM) openly defy Bitcoin (BTC)’s pull. However, the fact remains that a lot of people in this market do not care about the tech; they only care about the money.

Chart for ETC/USD (1W)
A lot of people seem to be bothered by manipulation. Wherever there is a market there is manipulation. It is hard to find a market which is not manipulated at times. That being said, there are certain control in place in other markets to prevent manipulation to such a degree that might do irreparable damage to the entire market. For instance, consider the number of new but promising cryptocurrency projects that have raised funds via ICOs. This market meltdown has stripped them off the funds they had raised to work on those projects. The only reason this has happened is because those projects chose to tie themselves to cryptocurrency markets. Ethereum (ETH) has been used by a ton of new companies to raise funds for ICOs.
This has resulted in a large inflow of money into Ethereum (ETH) and after those ICOs raise money with Ethereum (ETH) they dump it all on open market for fiat money without any concern for its impact on the price of Ethereum (ETH) or the general market. The recent market correction has exposed how flawed this approach to fundraising is. As previously mentioned, Ethereum Classic (ETC) always considers the long term effects of such actions. This is why the Ethereum Classic (ETC) team has been discouraging holding ICOs on the Ethereum Classic (ETC) blockchain. In fact, the director of ETC Cooperative, Anthony Lusardi recently tweeted that he would personally like to thank all ICOs for not using the Ethereum Classic (ETC) blockchain.
Source: Crypto Daily

OKEx Denies Claims Trader Unfairly Lost $700,000 on BCH Futures Contracts

Cryptocurrency traders have reportedly suffered huge losses after digital asset exchange, OKEx, quickly settled bitcoin cash (BCH) futures contracts – without properly informing users before the BCH hard fork on November 14th. Qiao Changhe, the founder of Beijing-based Consensus Technologies, has alleged that he lost $700,000 because OKEx’s management closed the BCH futures contracts at a point that did not accurately reflect cryptocurrency prices (at that particular time).
Source: Crypto Globe

Hodl Tight, Bitcoin Will Reign Again

November has been a pretty bleak month for cryptocurrency, the markets are hitting new yearly lows and for the first time in a very long time, we are witnessing a huge shakeup in the state of the markets. At the time of writing, XRP now sits above Ethereum by market capitalisation as Stellar now sits above Bitcoin Cash. The top end of the markets have been rattled, in a sentiment that has continued throughout. This marks a major incident, one that is leaving investors feeling a little deflated.
What does this mean?
Well, firstly if you look through the news, you’ll see a stream of reports stating that this is the time to buy. Of course, by definition what we see at the moment are very cheap prices, meaning you can buy Bitcoin for a low price and you can purchase EOS for a low price too. Let’s also bear in mind that we know Bitcoin has the potential to hit $20,000.00 and we know that EOS has the potential to hit $20.00, so now seems to be a sensible time to buy – you have the potential to get the very most out of your money.

What we should consider however though, does what you see in the markets today, really make you want to buy cryptocurrency? If you’ve never bought before, perhaps it’s worth taking a little gamble? If you already own crypto though, do you really want to risk anymore of your money on a market that has failed to perform for nearly 12 months?
What we see today and what we have seen through the past month is the pure essence of volatility. The cryptocurrency markets are very volatile, meaning investment is very risky. Just because prices are low now, it doesn’t mean that prices will fly back up again – indeed, if prices do fly, great, you’ve taken a good return on your investment, but you should be aware of the fact that prices might not fly back up again. So, when we tell you to only invest what you can afford to lose, this is what we mean.
Should I buy now?
So the real question, should you buy now? If you have money you can afford to lose, perhaps – there is a chance you’ll make a profit. However, please do remember that we are not investment advisors, therefore I would never actually recommend you invest, instead, what I will recommend is that you use the falling markets to inspire you to do further research, check out current prices and check out historical trends. Keep up to date with the news and keep your eyes on what is going on throughout the entire industry. This way, you can ensure you are best informed and can make educated investment decisions, that will hopefully enable you to see a return eventually.
What will happen next?
We all want to know what will happen next here, in order to determine if the markets will recover. Remember, we’re not experts, so this is just speculation, however, this is what we would like to see happen:
Bitcoin dominance currently stands way over 50%, therefore we know that Bitcoin has a grip on the markets. When Bitcoin moves in any given direction, the rest of the markets are likely to follow when dominance is so high. So, what we expect to see is Bitcoin start to recover (probably through correction) and in turn, we expect the rest of the markets to pull up too. Bitcoin could well climb back towards $6,000.00, when it does, the rest of the markets should continue.
Moreover, when the markets crash like this, we generally see a bull run initiate just after the end of the crash – this is generally down to a manic buying spree, so, with prices low, lots of investors will start to pump cash back into the markets, causing value to spike once more.
None of these scenarios will push Bitcoin up to $20,000.00 anytime soon, therefore don’t expect the next bull run to be the ride of your life, instead, just keep your eyes out for the signs that it might happen.
Overall, our advice is this – research well, keep your eyes on the prize and ensure you are trading in a safe manner. This is hard evidence that the cryptocurrency markets are volatile, it’s a tough industry to be involved in, one that really is full of surprises.
Source: Crypto Daily

Coinbase XRP Saga Continues

One of the biggest United States-based cryptocurrency exchanges, Coinbase has introduced support for XRP as a feature of their custodian service. The addition of the token was originally announced by Coinbase back in October in light of actual support coming for the coin for traders to both buy and sell.
In comparison to the unregulated landscape of most digital currency exchanges, Coinbase Custody includes a layer of assurance for large capital investors. Rather than aiming towards specific customers or the user base as a whole, Coinbase custody is prepared for hedge funds and institutional investors with millions in assets, providing what is easy to use secure platform for storing and funding cryptocurrency specifically as fresh faces to the industry don’t fully understand the concept of private keys and cold storage wallet. On top of the pros of an upgraded financial security, Coinbase Custody “provides investors with insurance coverage on their stored assets which now extends to XRP, despite the coin not being listed directly on the exchange.”
Over the past week, we have seen the markets crash, climb and then over the past day, crash once again which sent Bitcoin below the $5,000 key resistance level. Not only that but XRP has taken over Ethereum as the second biggest cryptocurrency in the space and there is even talk of XRP taking over Bitcoin by the end of the week as the leading cryptocurrency. The currency is down from its once all-time high of $3.80 earlier in the year. Funnily enough, this was due to an appreciation created through investor anticipation of the token being listed on Coinbase, XRP and Ripple are always making regular headlines for building adoption throughout this year. As reported by EWN, “XRP thus far has embodied the paradox of cryptocurrency growth, that development and new adoption for blockchain and crypto have continued to grow exponentially despite the slumping prices.”
As said by Ethereum World News:

“With the proverbial bloodbath taking place in cryptocurrency’s market capitalization, a long-anticipated union of Coinbase and XRP could be the exact pairing to reignite interest. While investors will continue to be hesitant over any association between XRP and Coinbase, particularly after the coin rose and plummeted following rumours of a listing in January 2018, the addition on the Coinbase Custody program is some small indication that there could be interest between the two parties.”

It was back in July that Coinbase announced the possibility of five new currencies being added to the exchange, with XRP’s primary competitor Stellar XLM being listed as a front-runner. Despite this, Stellar doesn’t have any relation to the exchange in any context outside of that first reveal.
What are your thoughts? Let us know what you think down below in the comments!
Source: Crypto Daily