Is Bitcoin Charting a 2015-Style Price Bottom?

Is Bitcoin Charting a 2015-Style Price Bottom?

Bitcoin’s price action this year may be dismal, but it might not be without precedent. Having hit a record high near $20,000 in December, the world’s largest cryptocurrency began 2018 backed a wave of optimism. Since then, however, it hasn’t translated this into gains for investors. Rather, the price appears to be following a pattern last seen ahead of a bullish reversal from September 2015. Why is that important for traders now? When the bull market ended last time around, we saw a violent drop in price whereby bulls were unable to produce any significant highs over the course of the year. Comparing 2018 to 2015, there are other subtle similarities to draw on for analysts. In both 2015 and 2018, the price experienced peaks up 36 percent from their respective troughs in July, a development only to be followed through by a poor August performance. The difference, however, is that while 2015’s trend was finally broken by a higher high on July 6, bitcoin’s current bearish trend has not been breached in 2018. As such, breaking that trend at $8,500 (the previous significant high) could be key should history repeat. September, then, could be the make or break for the comparison, as the current uptrend that began August 24, has been slow and steady resulting in a more convincing move as it edges closer to the previous monthly high. Outlook Over on the daily chart, we can see BTC has produced a series of lower highs in the first seven months of 2018. Bears who have been in full control since the start of the year have defied each attempt to move higher, slapping bulls down with added sell pressure. However, the subtle differences between each drop have lessened in intensity. More importantly, despite the lower highs, the bears have repeatedly failed to secure a weekly close below the February low of $6,000. Further, BTC’s rally from the August low of $5,859 has created a first higher low of the year. So, it seems safe to say that the stage is set for BTC to print the first higher price high of the year by moving above the July high of $8,500. View The bearish conditions that have gripped the greater markets appear to be weakening with…

SEC Takes Action Against ‘First US Regulated Crypto Asset Fund’

SEC Takes Action Against ‘First US Regulated Crypto Asset Fund’

Regulation The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on Tuesday that it has taken action against two cryptocurrency firms. Both mark the “first-ever” action of their kind by the Commission. One is against a firm which claims to offer the “first regulated crypto asset fund in the United States” and the other is against an “ICO Superstore.” Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals SEC’s Action Against Crypto Asset Management The SEC on Tuesday “announced its first-ever enforcement action finding an investment company registration violation by a hedge fund manager based on its investments in digital assets.” The firm, located in La Jolla, California, focuses primarily on managing investment portfolios of cryptocurrency and related assets. The Commission elaborated: The SEC entered an order finding that Crypto Asset Management LP (CAM) offered a fund that operated as an unregistered investment company while falsely marketing it as the ‘first regulated crypto asset fund in the United States’. According to the order against CAM and its sole principal, Timothy Enneking, the firm raised more than $3.6 million over a four-month period in late 2017 “while falsely claiming that the fund was regulated by the SEC and had filed a registration statement with the agency.” The Commission clarified: By engaging in an unregistered non-exempt public offering and investing more than 40 percent of the fund’s assets in digital asset securities, CAM caused the fund to operate as an unregistered investment company. The firm “ceased its public offering and offered buy backs to affected investors” after being contacted by the Commission. “CAM and Enneking agreed to the SEC’s cease-and-desist order and censure without admitting or denying the findings against them, and agreed to pay a penalty of $200,000,” the agency concluded. SEC’s Action Against ‘ICO Superstore’ Also on September 11, the SEC took action against another crypto firm and its two owners. The Michigan-based Tokenlot LLC is self-described as an “ICO Superstore,” the SEC detailed, adding that its owners are Lenny Kugel and Eli L. Lewitt. The agency asserted: This is the SEC’s first case charging unregistered broker-dealers for selling digital tokens after the SEC issued The DAO Report in 2017 cautioning that those who offer and sell digital securities must comply with the federal securities…

OKCoin’s Star Xu Questioned as Police Investigate Bitcoin Futures Allegations

OKCoin’s Star Xu Questioned as Police Investigate Bitcoin Futures Allegations

Crypto exchange OKCoin’s founder Star Xu has been released from a police department in Shanghai after 24 hours assisting an investigation into investors’ accusations that OKEx manipulated bitcoin futures on its platform. Chinese business media outlet Caixin reported on Tuesday that, since the night of Sept. 10 (China time), Xu had been answering questions at the Shanghai police’s Weifang Xincun precinct. Another business news source Cailian Press further reported Tuesday night that Xu was released after 24 hours and the case had been transferred to the police department in Beijing, together with materials gathered so far. “Whether the Beijing department will launch a further investigation is up to them,” a police officer from the Shanghai precinct was quoted as saying in the latter report. According to Caixin, the dispute stemmed from complaints made by a group of investors who claimed they lost a significant amount of funds on OKEx due to a system crash they alleged the platform orchestrated. The investors went on to allege that their bitcoin futures positions were force liquidated on Sept. 5 when the price of bitcoin saw a major drop, but OKEx’s service crash in the meantime left them without enough time to clear their positions prior to the forced liquidation. As of press time, OKEx had not published any statement on the alleged system issue. When questioned, a spokesperson told CoinDesk the company is”not aware of such a problem.” Caixin indicated the group of investors spotted Xu’s whereabouts by following his personal trainer to the hotel where he was staying on Monday and went managed to bring about a face-to-face dispute. Xu subsequently called the police, after which officers arrived to take both Xu and the investors to the police department for further questioning, according to the report. On Tuesday morning, more investors who allegedly suffered from the system crash arrived at the Shanghai police station to submit materials seeking to prove their accusation, according to Caixin. The Weifang Xincun precinct couldn’t be reached for comment to confirm who initially called the police and whether Xu was questioned as a witness or as a suspect. In a response to a CoinDesk enquiry, OKEx said: “As far as OKEx is aware, it was Xu who called the police for help when…

With Bitcoin Cash, A Namibian Conservationist Hopes To Save Endangered African Wild Dog

With Bitcoin Cash, A Namibian Conservationist Hopes To Save Endangered African Wild Dog

News In Namibia, the African wild dog population has been decimated to near extinction. But one wildlife lover is trying to stop all that. And bitcoin cash (BCH) is her gateway. Also read: Kucoin Expands Into Australia After $3m Bitcoin Australia Deal Leroux Gets First BCH Transfer In Namibian Wild Nadja Leroux, a Namibian wildlife conservationist looking out for the African wild dog, received her first bitcoin cash donation of Rand 145 (about US$10) while deep in the wild, protecting the animal she loves most. A week ago, the conservationist set up a bitcoin cash fund, with a target of more than R24,800 (US$1,600) to acquire the technology she needs for the work. By September 9, Leroux had raised the equivalent of R504 ($33) worth of bitcoin cash (BCH). The Namibian believes BCH represents speed and convenience for Africans seeking to do business. “Why BCH?” Leroux asks herself in a post on Twitter designed to make the world understand her objectives. “It’s a family,” she replies. “It’s public. It’s 24 hours a day. It’s the new generation!” One of the items Leroux intends to buy from proceeds of her fund raiser is an iPad. She says the device allows for “immediate data entry and analysis” and that it is “secure, mobile.It is so important I have the right technology to continue my work in the field.” Leroux, who has so far this year spent 121 days in the field “camping trying to find the African wild dog”, explains on her Twitter handle, Track the Facts, Communities and Conservation. She describes her work station as “in the middle of nowhere, but right where the action is.” Endangered Species The African wild dog population is running critical. The dog is often killed by farmers for killing livestock. Now, it has gone extinct in 23 countries. In the Otjozondjupa region of Namibia, the dogs co-exist with pastoral communities, setting them up for a livestock-centered human-wildlife conflict. As community development manager of the Cheetah Conservation Fund, Leroux engages farmers in monitoring patterns of predation and using natural means such as livestock guard dogs so farmers do not resort to killing the wild dogs to protect domestic animals. “Why the African wild dog? It’s the most endangered large carnivore in Southern Africa,” she says.…

Op-ed: Tokenized Securities Provide Liquidity

Op-ed: Tokenized Securities Provide Liquidity

Op-Ed The following opinion piece on token-as-securities was written by Benjamin Pirus, a crypto trader who has written many articles for different ICOs, crypto news outlets, and clients. 2017 was a special year in many ways. Not often in life are there opportunities to invest in an asset and see a profit increase of 1000% (or higher) in the span of a few days. Yet, this was common on and off for much of 2017 in the cryptocurrency space. Some argue that these days are now gone forever. However, there may be a case for one more exponential bull run in crypto, with tokenized securities leading the way. Also read: Philippines Okays PDAX Crypto Exchange Speaking objectively, 2018 has been a difficult year for the crypto space, with an overall market cap crash of over 75%, and regulatory fears and misunderstanding sprinkled throughout the year, likely keeping the market from a comeback. Crypto seems to have arrived at a crossroad, with many regulatory decisions to be made ahead. It seems as though the market cap will not reach new highs until several regulatory issues are sorted out and clarified. Tokenized securities will bring more clarity and stability to a market that currently needs more investors; investors that will only join in when they feel their investments will be safe. Many crypto investors have left the space with feelings of contempt. This can be in part attributed to the fact that cryptocurrencies are not currently backed by anything. The crypto market sees price action almost entirely based on speculation. When a person buys an altcoin, there is no certainty that price will fluctuate based on the success of the underlying company. Ripple is actually very well known in this aspect. Yes XRP and Ripple (the company) are connected. But XRP’s price action does not reflect the success of the Ripple company – a classic example of most crypto assets currently. Right now, altcoins are mostly utility tokens, with various roles in the projects they’re connected to. Their price valuation should be based on the demand for the tokens to be used for their intended purpose in said system. But at present, prices are speculative and not based on use. For the above reasons, many projects in the crypto space…

In an Apparent First, U.S. SEC Penalizes Crypto Hedge Fund

In an Apparent First, U.S. SEC Penalizes Crypto Hedge Fund

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a cease and desist order and a $200,000 fine to Crypto Asset Management (CAM) and its founder Timothy Enneking, according to a document published on the commission’s website Tuesday, September 11. According to CNBC, this is the first SEC disciplinary action against a digital asset management fund. The SEC order says that CAM “misrepresented” itself as the “first regulated crypto asset fund in the United States,” and raised $3.6 million from 44 investors in late 2017, bringing its net asset value to $37 million. According to the filing, the fund has “never been registered with the Commission in any capacity.” Тhe commission insists that CAM “wilfully” broke the law by claiming to have the necessary credentials associated with holding and trading securities. After being contacted by the SEC, the company has agreed to stop its public offering and has offered a buyback to investors. CAM has also agreed to pay the fine, while it has not admitted guilt to the commission’s allegations. Also today, the SEC issued an order against “ICO superstore” TokenLot. The Commission says that TokenLot breached the law by failing to register. Similar to CAM, the firm has agreed to pay a $471,000, but has not formally admitted to violating the law. In a further move from regulators, the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has filed charges against a Massachusetts man on September 11 for securities fraud and illegal distribution of an unregistered cryptocurrency HempCoin.

IMF Pressures Marshall Islands to Drop National Crypto

IMF Pressures Marshall Islands to Drop National Crypto

Economy & Regulation The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has exerted pressure on the Marshall Islands to torpedo its proposed crypto. The move by the Washington-based global financial institution has been cited as evidence of the steps central bankers will take to thwart cryptocurrency adoption. The Marshall Islands’ decision could have ramifications that extend far beyond the confines of the Pacific island country. Also read: Philippines Okays PDAX Crypto Exchange IMF Leans On the Marshall Islands Back in March, we reported on the Marshall Islands’ plan to introduce a national cryptocurrency, the Sovereign (SOV). It was to be distributed to the islanders and special provisions would include facial recognition built in to prevent money laundering. The IMF has now advised the Marshalls against proceeding in no uncertain terms, issuing the sort of apocalyptic warnings that cryptocurrency users have become accustomed to. In a 58-page report, the IMF warns of US banks refusing to work with Marshall Islands businesses should the national crypto be adopted. To all intents and purposes, this would cut off banking services to the islands’ 53,000 residents. Given that the proposed national crypto is to be launched via a modest $30m initial coin offering plus an airdrop to local residents, the IMF’s stance seems both hyperbolic and draconian. The report warns: The potential benefits from [digital currency] revenue gains appear considerably smaller than the potential costs arising from economic, reputational, AML/CFT, and governance risks. In the absence of adequate measures to mitigate them, the authorities should seriously reconsider the issuance of the digital currency as legal tender. Bullying the Little Guy or Just Looking Out for Them? The IMF’s warnings over the fate of the Sovereign could be uncharitably described as “FUD”. Its report speaks starkly of “the potential for digital currencies to be misused for money laundering and terrorist financing”, which simply isn’t feasible with the SOV’s low market cap and KYC/AML provisions. As news.Bitcoin.com reported earlier this week, terrorists prefer cash to crypto, and will have zero interest in using the Marshall Islands’ national digital currency. The Marshall Islands The self-governing territory has been free from US rule since 1979, but continues to use the US dollar. The islands’ diminutive size and close ties to the US are likely to be the…

Inside Bitewei: The $20 Million Bitcoin Miner Being Hailed as a Bitmain Rival

Inside Bitewei: The $20 Million Bitcoin Miner Being Hailed as a Bitmain Rival

Things haven’t been easy of late for Bitmain. After CoinDesk revealed the China-based crypto mining giant was planning an initial public offering (IPO) for September, the company has faced a wave of perhaps unprecedented scrutiny. On social media, allegations emerged Bitmain was everything from insolvent to presenting a rosy outlook for its financials, all the while investors linked to the funding effort backed away from the deal. Now it appears Bitmain is facing a new and well-capitalized competitor. Revealed exclusively to CoinDesk, Bitewei, a Shenzhen-based mining chip manufacturer led by Yang Zuoxing, the former director of design at Bitmain, has raised 140 million yuan (around $20 million) to bring to market mining chips that long-time mining industry insiders believe could lead it to rival at least one area of Bitmain’s business. Tyler Xiong, COO of the bitcoin mining pool operator Bixin, which joined Bitewei’s initial investment, told CoinDesk that it believes the company’s Whatsminer line of mining chips to be “a game changer.” Founded in Shenzhen in July 2016, Bitewei is now considered by some to be the most efficient hardware manufacturer on the market. According to test results published by Bitewei, the upcoming WhatsMiner M10 is roughly 30 percent more efficient, in terms of electricity consumption than Bitmain’s most recent flagship product the AntMiner S9 Hydro. Yang told CoinDesk Bitewei has so far received pre-orders of over 1,000 units of Whatsminer M10, a product scheduled to officially launch on September 19, but that started its pre-sale in mid August. With an average price around $1,600 depending on the shipping batch, the new product could already be generating a revenue beyond $1.6 million. That said, Bitewei admittedly has a long way to go, as IPO materials suggest Bitmain controls 85 percent of the global cryptocurrency mining hardware market. Further, it has a well-developed software-based business, with its BTC.com and Antpool mining pools providing mining tools to 30 percent of the network’s miners. This large market share is viewed with skepticism by cryptocurrency developers, who believe it conflicts with efforts to open access to cryptocurrency protocols and the digital monetary rewards they create. As such, the fact that hardware distributors are already selling Whatsminer products has created excitement among those who believe the rise of additional, competitive mining chip providers could benefit the…

Crypto Industry Leaders Establish Washington-Based Lobby Group

Crypto Industry Leaders Establish Washington-Based Lobby Group

A group of U.S.-based blockchain and crypto companies have announced they will form the Blockchain Association, the “first” lobbying group representing the blockchain industry in Washington D.C., the Washington Post reported September 11. The Blockchain Association is comprised of industry leaders such as crypto exchange Coinbase, technology startup Protocol Labs, as well as the Digital Currency Group and Polychain Capital. The lobbying organization will reportedly be located in Washington, representing entrepreneurs and investors who are engaged in blockchain-powered projects. The Blockchain Association will represent mainstream companies that look to operate within the political system, primarily addressing policy issues and the treatment of cryptocurrency by U.S. tax law. At the same time, the group will work closely with lawmakers on anti-money laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC) policy development within the industry. Mike Lempres, Coinbase’s Chief Legal and Risk Officer, further explained: “The Blockchain Association is an effort to get the preeminent companies in the space together so [policymakers] know they’re hearing from companies that welcome regulation when it’s appropriate. We’re not companies looking to game the system, but trying to develop a legal and regulatory system that’ll stand the test of time.” Jerry Brito, executive director of the non-profit research and advocacy group Coin Center, reportedly said that the rise of a purpose-specific trade group shows the industry is maturing. In July, Coinbase created its own political action committee (PAC) to raise money to spend on U.S. elections. In the U.S., PACs are organizations that pool campaign contributions from members with similar policy and political goals and subsequently donate them to political campaigns for or against candidates, legislation, or ballot initiatives.

BCH Roundup: Rock Festivals, Long Form Blogging, and Prescription Drugs

BCH Roundup: Rock Festivals, Long Form Blogging, and Prescription Drugs

News The past seven days has been another interesting week for Bitcoin Cash (BCH) proponents. After wrapping up a successful Stress Test Day with a record 2.2 million transactions confirmed in 24-hours there’s been a lot more happening within the BCH ecosystem. Also read: Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork Debate Reconvenes After the Stress Test Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Market Action The Bitcoin Cash (BCH) community recently celebrated the successful Stress Test Day on September 1 and continued flooding the network with transactions until September 6. As far as BCH trading markets are concerned the spot price of bitcoin cash has been pretty low as the cryptocurrency is now trading at $437 per coin. At the time of publication, the bitcoin cash market capitalization is $7.6 billion and commands $345 million in 24-hour trade volume. Data stemming from the price and market statistics website Satoshi Pulse details that the top exchange today swapping the most BCH is the trading platform Lbank. This is followed by cryptocurrency exchanges Coinex, Huobi, Okex, and Hitbtc. As far as money flow traded against BCH the top pairs today include tether (USDT 46%), BTC (29.3%), ETH (12.7%), USD (7%), QC (1.9%), and KRW (0.88%). Online Pharmaceutical Service Accepts Bitcoin Cash  Besides the dreary crypto-markets, there’s been lots of good news taking place within the BCH ecosystem. One specific merchant adoption announcement bitcoin cashers enjoyed was from the online pharmacy service from Canada called Script.care. The pharmaceutical vendor has announced the company now accepts bitcoin cash for payments. Script.care says the company is pleased to accept BCH to fulfill prescription orders and their pricing is significantly lower than average prices in the US. Unfortunately being an online pharmaceutical vendor the company cannot deal directly with Canadian citizens. “We can import and export medications but not sell them to Canadians directly,” explains a Script.care representative. Canadian company Script.care accepts bitcoin cash (BCH) for payments. Bitcoin Cash Powered App Matter.cash Adds Arbitrarily Long Comment Abilities Back in June news.Bitcoin.com reported on the long form blogging application Matter.cash and this week the platform has added some new features. The application is a platform that allows people to publish long-form posts using the Bitcoin Cash chain’s op-return feature. The Matter.cash creators explain this week that users can now…