Your dose of crypto news and analysis from @BTO and @Goldfinger

I’ve been drunk and uncomfortably full since last Friday, and this has been a relatively slow news week, so this will be a slightly shorter edition of Crypto Wars…

This week we suffered the aftershock of the Christmas 2017 Crypto Crash — yes, another “crash”, this time caused by Korea-based FUD. But, lo and behold, today the crypto markets are surging. We’re back above US$600 billion in global crypto market cap and all is well with the world.

This time, however, we only dropped to around US$540 billion — as compared to the actual Christmas 2017 Crypto Crash, which sent us sliding down to — THE HORROR — US$420 billion. (For context, recall that we were just crossing the US$200 billion mark at the beginning of November.)

Let’s take a look at the performance of the major cryptos this week (last Friday to today):

  • Bitcoin trading around US$14,600, up 2.3% on the week
  • Ethereum trading around US$750, up 8.7% on the week
  • Ethereum Classic trading around US$20.50, down 9.6% on the week
  • Bitcoin Cash trading around US$2,700, down 7.6% on the week
  • Dash trading around US$1,125, down 11% on the week
  • Litecoin trading around US$245, down 11% on the week
  • Monero trading around US$373, up 9.7% on the week
  • ZCash trading around US$554, up 4.5% on the week

In addition, given today's action in the markets, we should mention Ripple (XRP). It was trading at US$1.13 last Friday, and today is around US$2.22, up 96.5% on the week! It has passed Ethereum in overall market cap to take the second spot behind Bitcoin, but some think this is unjustified.

Happy New Year everyone!! I’ve resolved to have a booze-free January and try to hit the gym. Who’s with me?

WTF did I miss this week in crypto?

Bitcoin Dips Below $14,000 as South Korea Eyes Fresh Regulations

So, here is a typical FUD article we saw yesterday after some regulatory news came out of Korea overnight. Says the article: “Bitcoin resumed its slide Thursday, dipping below $14,000 as the cryptocurrency’s dizzying drop from a record set 10 days ago intensified.” Click here for another one.
For the best account of what actually happened, see this short post from reddit user u/givvy12. It seems the government is merely trying to curb the use of anonymous “virtual bank accounts”, a peculiarity of the Korean banking system, as the use of these types of accounts are partly to blame for the unhealthy speculative fervour gripping the country (where Bitcoin prices are regularly several thousand more than those seen in North America). Instead, “real-name bank accounts” will now need to be used. And it seems that some of the largest Korean-based exchanges — Korbit, Bithumb, and and UpBit — may already be following these regulations completely.
In my opinion, this is not a big deal and is another step in the right direction: a major government regulating the space in a manner that allows it to continue to flourish in a healthier, more legitimized way.

'Heed these words of warning:' Ethereum founder threatens to leave if the crypto community doesn't grow up

Vitalik Buterin took to Twitter this week to issue some “words of warning”. He lamented the immaturity of communities across the cryptocurrency world, saying folks in the space should understand the difference between enacting positive change for society, and just moving a bunch of money around:
Speaking of Buterin, apparently he sent 30,000 Ether to Bitstamp in mid-December (worth around US$22.5 million today). Maybe he had to buy himself some Christmas lambos. Or maybe, as the article suggests, he’s just diversifying some of his holdings.

Tom Lee explains why Bitcoin isn't a speculative bubble

Winklevoss twins cut up Bitcoin key and keep pieces in different bank vaults to protect $1.3 billion digital fortune

Here’s a unique crypto wealth protection strategy employed by the Winklevii. They printed off their keys and cut them up into pieces before storing them in envelopes in safe deposit boxes across the US. I’d be paranoid too if I was hodling over a billion dollars worth of Bitcoin. What if someone breaks into one of their boxes and destroys that chunk of their key? Are they fucked?

Five Cryptocurrencies primed to explode in 2018

Included in the list are Ethereum (ETH), Stellar Lumens (XLM), Request Network (REQ), VeChain (VET), and Quantstamp (QSP). I'm less familiar with the latter three, but am bullish on ETH and XLM. As with anything you see on CEO.CA, DYODD.

Former FDIC Chair: Bitcoin Policies Shouldn't 'Feed the Frenzy'

Sheila Bair, the former chair of the U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), is arguing bitcoin shouldn't be banned just because it doesn't have "intrinsic value." In an op-ed article published on Yahoo Finance this week, Bair instead contends policies should be in place to protect investors. In the post, Bair elaborated that currency itself was once just like bitcoin — an idea assigned value by societies because people needed a medium to trade and that depended "more on psychology than physical attributes."

Crypto Exchange Poloniex to Impose Customer ID Requirements

Similar to the Korean exchanges, US-based exchange Poloniex has decided to voluntarily ramp up its know-your-client (KYC) efforts. This change is the latest move by the exchange to beef up its regulatory compliance and better ensure its services aren't used as a conduit for criminal activities such as money laundering. Those not able to meet the requirement deadline, Poloniex said, will have their accounts disabled, meaning they will no longer be able to deposit, trade, lend, or open orders.

2018 Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Outlook —

The author discusses the following topics in a short read on what we can expect for the coming year in crypto:
  • Scaling will Continue to be an Issue for Decentralized Blockchains for Much of 2018
  • Some Blockchain Related Projects will Begin to Mature and Yield True Value
  • Liquidity and Volatility of Cryptocurrencies
  • More Institutional Involvement
  • A Major Bubble Burst or a Major Correction

Coins and tokens and stocks, oh my!

[Note — Net change and % change figures are from the close last Friday to the close today.]

HIVE Blockchain (TSXV:HIVE) — $HIVE — Net Change: +$0.18; % Change: +5.5%

We learned today that HIVE closed its massive $115 million financing and is now cashed up to complete its previously announced expansion into Sweden (including large Bitcoin mine), with around US$50 million left to embark on new projects and acquisitions. Given this was the last trading day of the year, volume was fairly low today for HIVE standards, but it was up on the news, hitting a high of $3.49 today before closing at $3.43.

The quote from CEO Pokrandt in the news release is definitely worth a read and bodes well for what's to come for the company in 2018: “This financing provided us with a highly accretive growth opportunity – increasing our overall computing power by more than 150% (from 17.4 MW to 44.2 MW) with just 11% dilution to shareholders... In addition to our fully funded projects in Sweden, we will now have a strong working capital balance of approximately US$50M and significant flexibility to explore further projects and acquisitions.”

HashChain Technology (TSXV:KASH) — $KASH — Net Change: +$0.13; % Change: +4.3%

New Dash and Bitcoin miner KASH had a nice finish to the week after hitting a low in this short trading week of $2.75. It closed out the week at $3.15. Very respectable after its explosive debut last week.

Mogo Finance (TSX:MOGO) — $MOGO — Net Change: -$0.20; % Change: -3.1%

MOGO announced this week that it has closed its financing of just over $26 million. They plan on using the funds to accelerate their growth strategy in 2018, which will see the launch of MogoCrypto and likely other blockchain initiatives to be announced down the road. The stock seems to be on sale at the moment, trading below the private placement price of $7.00. It closed the week at $6.30.

Other crypto/blockchain-related stocks riding the wave:

  • Overstock (NASDAQ:OSTK) — $OSTK — Net Change: -US$1.80; % Change: -2.7%
  • MGT Capital (OTC:MGTI) — $MGTI — Net Change: -US$0.12; % Change: -2.5%
  • LeoNovus (TSXV:LTV) — $LTV — Net Change: -$0.06; % Change: -15.8%
  • Global Blockchain (TSXV:BLOC) — $BLOC — Net Change: -$0.26; % Change: -12.7%
  • BTL Group (TSXV:BTL) — $BTL — Net Change: +$2.81; % Change: +27.8%
  • NetCents Technology (CSE:NC) — $NC — Net Change: -$0.19; % Change: -7.9%
  • 360 Blockchain (CSE:CODE) — $CODE — Net Change: -0.025; % Change: -8.9%
  • Riot Blockchain (NASDAQ:RIOT) — $RIOT — Net Change: +US$3.50; % Change: +14.1%
  • eXeBlock Technology (CSE:XBLK) — $XBLK — Net Change: -$0.33; % Change: -26.0%
  • BIG Blockchain Intelligence Group Inc. (CSE:BIGG) — $BIGG — Net Change: $0.00; % Change: 0.0%
  • And a few others that have been getting some attention: Atlas Cloud (CSE:AKE) - $AKE; Block One Capital (TSXV:BLOK) - $BLOK; Calyx Bio-Ventures (TSXV:CYX) - $CYX; ePlay Digital (CSE:EPY) - $EPY; LottoGopher (CSE:LOTO) - $LOTO; HealthSpace Data Systems (CSE:HS); Stompy Bot (CSE:BOT); Imagination Park (CSE:IP).

The CryptoTechnician Report

After last week's outrageous volatility the cryptocurrency sector finished the year in a much calmer fashion. Bitcoin has spent the last couple of days oscillating between $14,000 and $15,000 after carving out a pretty clean head & shoulders pattern on the daily chart:

A breach of support near $13,000 would be quite ominous with a measured move target projecting to below $8,000. However, the neckline has not been breached yet, so this pattern can also resolve to the upside; a rally above $17,000 would target a test of the all-time high at a minimum.

The big story of the week has been the remarkable rise of Ripple which has vaulted to the #2 spot on the crypto market cap list with a ~US$85 billion market cap. Ripple's ascent is stunning considering that less than three weeks ago it was trading at around $0.22:

Ethereum is coiling within a narrowing range constrained by $760 on the upside and $720 on the downside - below $720 next major support is near $670 followed by $600, whereas a breakout above $760 would place the all-time high at $870 in sight:

Something tells me that the current oscillations in Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash etc. are the calm before the next explosion in volatility in the crypto sector. Considering that 2017 is undeniably the year of cryptocurrencies, it seems fitting that New Year's Weekend could be the perfect backdrop for the next big move in the crypto sector.

Turning to the cryptocurrency equity sector we can also see that things have calmed down quite a bit since the enormous volatility of last week.

$MGTI Daily 
$RIOT Daily

A stock that we haven't mentioned in a while in the CryptoTechnician Report, HIVE Blockchain (TSXV:HIVE), has carved out a multi-week range-bound oscillation between C$3.00 and C$4.00, ending the year almost exactly in the middle of this range:

As volume churns within the narrowing range HIVE is building potential energy for its next directional move. Above C$4.15 would target a move to C$5.25+.

Funny things we saw this week

Seth Meyers -- Bitcoin Commercial: What Is It and How Does It Work?

Bitcoin - Ultra Spiritual Life episode 86



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