Category Archives: Cryptocurrency

Hong Kong Businessmen Targeted by Bitcoin Bomb Threats After Recent USA and Canada Attempts – Bitcoin Exchange Guide

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There have been many different ways to steal funds from individuals in the cryptocurrency market. However, a new methodology has been applied in Hong Kong and other countries such as the United States. According to a recent report released by the South China Morning Post, businessmen in Hong Kong are being targeted by criminals that want to steal Bitcoin from them.

These scammers try to steal Bitcoins from victims by threatening them that they will receive a bomb if they don’t send Bitcoins in the time span the scammers provide.

One of the affected individuals is Michael Gazeley, the CEO of Network Box. He received a message in his business email with this Bitcoin bomb threat. Furthermore, he said that he had to pay $20,000 if he wanted to avoid receiving a bomb in his office.

Gazeley said to the news outlet:

“This looks like the third wave of blackmail emails plaguing the world in the past few years… I have never seen something like this, which sounds like cyberterrorism, in my 20-year career in cybersecurity.”

Nevertheless, he was 99.99% sure that the message was not worth. Indeed, he mentioned that the email had some typo mistakes and the grammar used was not exactly good. That shows that the main intention is to take a few bucks from some individuals rather than really bombing an office.

Hong Kong authorities did not provide further information about this issue, thus it is not possible to know the exact number of companies affected by these threats.

This is not the first time that there are Bitcoin bomb threats around the world. A few days ago, as reported by NBC New York. Hoax bomb threats spread asking users to pay in Bitcoin. The New York Police Department (NYPD) informed on Twitter that there was an email circulating that contained a threat asking for a Bitcoin payment. However, they say that they did not find any devices in some of the places where the threat arrived.

The NYPD went on explaining that the threats are meant to cause disruption and/or obtain money in a fast way. Although the police will be responding to the calls made by the community, they believe that the threats are likely ‘not credible.’

This is not the first time that there are scammers trying to steal Bitcoin and other virtual currencies from users. Earlier this year, scammers on Twitter were asking for Bitcoin and ETH deposits using fake accounts that stole famous people’s identities.

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Crypto Anarchist Manifesto Author Tim May Dies of Natural Causes, Report

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Cypherpunks co-founder Timothy C. May has reportedly died of natural causes, a Facebook eulogy posted by cypherpunk Lucky Green stated Dec. 15.

In his social media post, Green informed:

“Word has reached me that my dear friend, co-conspirator in many things and for many years, fellow Freedom Fighter Tim May passed away earlier this week at his home in Corralitos, California.”

May is the author of “The Crypto Anarchist Manifesto,” published in 1992, in which he seemingly predicted some elements of currently existing decentralized cryptocurrencies:

“The State will of course try to slow or halt the spread of this [cryptography-based] technology, citing national security concerns, use of the technology by drug dealers and tax evaders, and fears of societal disintegration.”

However, May also admitted in the Manifesto that “many of these concerns will be valid,” since “crypto anarchy will allow national secrets to be trade freely and will allow illicit and stolen materials to be traded.”

In his Facebook post, Green wrote that while an autopsy has not been performed yet, “death appears to be from natural causes.” Green explains that May “co-founded the Cypherpunks, perhaps the single most effective pro-cryptography grassroots organization in history, together with Eric Hughes and John Gilmore in 1992.”

As Cointelegraph reported last year, many consider that the “cypherpunk movement deserves as much credit as Satoshi [Nakamoto] for laying down the foundational development of cryptography.” The legendary creator of Bitcoin (BTC) was reportedly in communication with the cypherpunk community before the release of the Bitcoin whitepaper in 2008, and communicated his ideas to them in an email thread.

As Cointelegraph reported in a dedicated analysis, government tracking of cryptocurrencies is increasing, but there are many ways to avoid it.

Privacy advocate and whistleblower Edward Snowden reportedly thinks that the leading cryptocurrency Bitcoin is not the optimal solution for private peer-to-peer transacting. Moreover, Snowden has repeatedly noted that he considers ZCash (ZEC) the “most interesting” altcoin, due to focus on privacy.

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CoinDesk Advisor: Crypto, Bitcoin (BTC) Valuation Models Are Wrong – Ethereum World News

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Crypto, Bitcoin Market Is “Just A Bit Backward”

Michael Casey, the chairman of CoinDesk’s advisory board, a well-recognized author, and the co-founder of Network Effects Media, sat down with Cheddar, an up and coming business media outlet, on Thursday. The crypto-friendly outlet called on the industry insider to discuss the state of the crypto industry today, and a number of unique topics were brought to the table.

A Cheddar anchor, staving away from asking the outlet’s normal round of questions, asked Casey if the way that crypto investors value digital assets, such as Bitcoin (BTC) or Ethereum (ETH), are putting cryptocurrencies into a crisis. Responding passionately, the crypto proponent, who regularly contributes to CoinDesk, noted that this market’s valuation models are “all just a bit backward.”

Elaborating on what he meant, Casey noted that cryptocurrencies and related technologies are seen as a way to disintermediate ecosystems and to curb centralized entities. But now, the way that we value these blockchain-based assets is quite reminiscent of how traditional markets are run — a big no-no for diehard decentralists.

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He added that we’re benchmarking crypto’s performance of fiat, or more specifically, we’re continually denoting BTC’s value in dollar signs, rather than the iconic ₿(itcoin). In other words, he said that much of the crypto market is focused on a successful exit into fiat, rather than maintaining skin in the game, so to speak. Casey added that this causes incentives to get misaligned, as investors look for profit, instead of ousting the often corrupt powers that be.

Case in point, the CEO of Bitpay recently told CNBC that much of the Bitcoin price is based on speculation, rather than legitimate use in the real world, especially in the day-to-day.

Bitcoin Fundamentals Boom — Network Value

Although Casey didn’t touch on how exactly to value cryptocurrencies, a growing theme in this ecosystem has been the use of Network Value to assess this nascent industry. Most notably, the concepts of network value have been utilized by analysts and researchers to determine what the “true value” of a cryptocoin, like BTC, is.

Just recently, Tom Lee, the head of research at Fundstrat, told his clients in a note that the fair value for BTC is $13,800 to $14,800, specifically due to the active wallet addresses, the amount of BTC transferred, and the asset’s unique characteristics of being a deflationary currency that is sovereign, censorship-resistant, borderless, and immutable. This forecast, interestingly, lines up with his overly optimistic end of year prediction, as reported by Ethereum World News previously.

While Lee was quickly lambasted for his call, his optimistic outlook on Bitcoin doesn’t come unwarranted. Anthony Pompliano, better known as “Pomp” to the crypto industry, recently spoke on the fact that the network that backs BTC is on the up-and-up, even while prices remain depressed.

Pomp, a former Snapchat and Facebook employee, exclaimed that at its core, Bitcoin is the world’s most secure transaction settlement layer, so value in BTC will always exist. In another piece, the Morgan Creek Digital partner noted that the growing transaction count, falling transactions fees, year-on-year hashrate growth, and the unprecedented creation of active nodes is another reason to be bullish on Bitcoin.

In October, even Joseph Lubin, the founder of ConsenSys and co-founder of Ethereum, told CNBC’s “First On” segment that while crypto is in the midst of a “bust,” fundamentals are “booming.” The serial entrepreneur, who roomed with Mike Novogratz at Princeton, even noted this budding ecosystem is the strongest it has ever been, indicating that the decline of speculative interest hasn’t irked true believers of this innovation.

Title Image Courtesy of Jamie Street on Unsplash
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New US Chief of Staff: Bitcoin is Good, ‘Not Manipulable by Any Government’ – CCN

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This week, following the scheduled leave of John F. Kelly, United States President Donald Trump has chosen the pro-Bitcoin Mick Mulvaney to serve as the acting White House Chief of Staff beginning 2019.

According to the Washington Post columnist Matt O’Brien, Mulvaney has been vocal about his support of Bitcoin (BTC) and in a speech covered by Mother Jones praised the decentralized nature of Bitcoin as a consensus currency.

In 2016, Mulvaney reportedly said that the Federal Reserve “effectively devalued the dollar” and emphasized that the exercise of such control is not possible with a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin that is “not manipulable by any government.”

Is it Good For Bitcoin?

Having a high profile official and an influential member of the Trump administration is certainly positive for the long-term growth of the asset class.

While the neutral stance of Mulvaney towards the cryptocurrency sector could affect the mindset of regulators and lawmakers in the U.S. to a certain extent, it realistically cannot have a short-term impact on the roadmap implemented by commissions like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or the Commodities and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

The presence of pro-Bitcoin and crypto officials in the U.S. government, however, could encourage other government officials to evaluate cryptocurrencies in a neutral way and analyze the benefits that the decentralized financial systems can bring.

In Sept. 2017, the central bank of Finland, for instance, released a research discussion that explicitly described the inefficiency of regulating blockchain protocols. The research concluded that Bitcoin is not and cannot be regulated because the protocol operates under strict rules implemented by the community sustained by miners, developers, and node operators.

The paper read:

“Bitcoin is not regulated. It cannot be regulated. There is no need to regulate it because as a system it is committed to the protocol as is and the transaction fees it charges the users are determined by the users independently of the miners’ efforts. Bitcoin’s design as an economic system is revolutionary and therefore would merit an economist’s attention and scrutiny even if it had not been functional. Its apparent functionality and usefulness should further encourage economists to study this marvelous structure.”

As seen in the paper of the central bank of Finland, it is possible for a central bank or a government to analyze the structure of Bitcoin in a neutral manner and create practical regulatory frameworks around it without restricting the growth of companies in the industry.

Currently, in regards to Bitcoin and even Ethereum, the SEC has clarified that Bitcoin is not considered a security under existing laws, essentially approving the infrastructure surrounding it.

Over the past several months, the SEC in the U.S. and other authorities in the global market have been primarily working on the integration of strict Know Your Customer (KYC) policies to eliminate money laundering in the cryptocurrency market.

Neutral Evaluation

The existence of a high ranking government official in the U.S. government that understands the purpose of digital currencies could have a long-lasting effect on the cryptocurrency industry and could encourage others to evaluate the asset class under a different light.

However, as the New York Post reported on Dec. 16, Mulvaney once described President Trump as “a terrible human being,” triggering political analysts to question how long the new chief of staff can remain in office.

Mick Mulvaney Image from Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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Ripple’s XRP and Market Leader Bitcoin [BTC] Both Rise to Potential Resistance Points – Blokt

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XRP/USD Daily Chart:

XRP Daily Chart – Source: TradingView.com

Market leader Bitcoin continued to form a new 2018 low this weekend as the market returned to bearish conditions Thursday.

The bearish conditions resulted in Ripple’s XRP breaking below the range it had been forming between $0.29 and $0.31.

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Prices have begun to recover today across the market, and the price of XRP has risen back up to the lower end of the range at $0.29.

Price may meet some resistance here, and the market leader Bitcoin may also have a role to play.

BTC/USD Daily Chart:

Bitcoin Daily Chart – Source: Tradingview.com

The price movements of XRP and Bitcoin have been closely linked since XRP became the largest altcoin by market cap.

With Bitcoin representing almost 55% of the total cryptocurrency market cap, its movements typically have a large impact on those of altcoins.

During its decline, Bitcoin met its most significant support point at $3300. After breaking below on the return to bearish conditions on Thursday, it has since risen back up to near this level.

This will likely be a case of $3300 turning from support to resistance and makes it more likely that XRP will meet resistance at the bottom of its prior range.

XRP/USD Hourly Chart:

XRP Hourly Chart -Source: TradingView.com

The hourly chart provides a closer look at the interaction of XRP with the lower end of the trading range.

Since starting to rise back up, XRP has tested the lower end of the range three times already.

If Bitcoin can continue to rise and overcome support at $3300, it is likely that XRP will be able to overcome the resistance and enter back into the trading range between $0.29 and $0.31.

If XRP breaks down from here, the next support level will be $0.25 which is the point of XRP’s 2018 low.

Key Takeaways:

  • Bitcoin and XRP both meet resistance as the market recovers from its recent bearish movements.
  • XRP meets resistance at the lower end of the trading range it had been forming from $0.29 to $0.31.
  • If XRP breaks down from here, the next support level to monitor is $0.25 which is the point of its 2018 low.

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A Look at Some of 2018's Most Popular Cryptocurrency Traders – Bitcoin News

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Markets and Prices

Cryptocurrency trading is a popular pursuit, as the fluctuation of digital assets provides plenty of profit-taking opportunities. The volatility gives expert traders enough room to pull in daily profits by carefully predicting price movements. Digital currency fans follow a slew of sophisticated traders online because they frequently publish technical analysis (TA) or short-term outlooks for the crypto markets.

Also Read: Despite 2018 Bear Market, Top Crypto Markets Have Outperformed FANG Stocks Since 2017

Despite the Dips, Cryptocurrency Intra-Day and Swing Traders Made a Lot of Money in 2018  

Here’s a look at the top cryptocurrency traders on Twitter and the TA publishing website Tradingview. The digital asset traders mentioned below have thousands of followers, and often publish their ideas so others can get a glimpse at their trading positions. There’s a lot of money to be made trading cryptocurrencies and there are many people who exchange digital assets for a living. Lots of intra-day and swing traders play the markets for profits every day and any type of movement can make them money. The 2017 digital currency bull run made crypto traders a bunch of capital, with the best even using the 2018 cryptocurrency bear market to make further profits.

Philakone

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency Traders

The first analyst on our list is the Canadian cryptocurrency trader Philakone (@Philakonecrypto). He’s been tweeting his analysis of various digital currency markets for quite some time and has amassed over 107,000 followers on Twitter. The trader habitually talks about bitcoin trading on a regular basis and explains how he is playing his current position. Philakone says he’s “married to the Elliot Wave Theory,” a form of technical analysis that uses investor psychology, optimistic and pessimistic trends, and price swings that produce market impulses and waves. The method created by Ralph Nelson Elliott is a popular technique used by many cryptocurrency traders. Crypto trader Philakone live streams his technical analysis for coins like BTC, XRP, and BCH.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersPhilakone tweets frequently about cryptocurrency movements and how to forecast swings.

Nick Core

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersAnother trader people follow is Nick Core (@Crypto_core), a day trader and statistician who routinely explains his bitcoin market outlook on Twitter, Youtube, and Tradingview. Core’s analysis gives an overview of digital asset price action and other indicators throughout various videos and the trader also discusses technical positions on the Discord platform. The trader has 33,000 followers on Twitter and almost 7,000 following his Tradingview outlooks. An examination of Core’s published ideas shows the trader will use exchanges like Bitfinex and Bitstamp, with most of his analysis on coins like BTC, XRP, and LTC.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersNick Core’s TA videos on Tradingview are quite popular and Core tweets about cryptocurrency markets regularly on Twitter.

Mr. Jozza

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersMr. Jozza (@Mrjozza) is a well-known bitcoin trader who posts a lot about the market trends taking place nearly every day. For instance, on Friday, Dec. 14, speaking about current BTC/USD trends, Mr. Jozza explains his  “Bitcoin scribble of destiny — Looking for a stop-run below $3k, even with this tapered off sell volume” while sharing a chart that shows his short-term forecast. The trader has more than 16,000 followers on Twitter and his posts mostly touch upon BTC/USD market trends.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersMr. Jozza is a long-time bitcoiner and trader who frequently gives his analysis of BTC and other cryptocurrency price movements.

Magic Poop Cannon

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersOne interesting and popular strategist on the website Tradingview has over 44,000 followers and goes by the name Magic Poop Cannon. The trader’s 500+ written ideas concerning the price of BTC and other market trends have received close to 1 million views to date. Magic Poop Cannon’s TA is filled with descriptions and indicators that show what he thinks will happen with the value of bitcoin over short-term periods. The trader believes he is “the master of the charts” and he posts his TA nearly every day. Magic Poop Cannon is big on writing about BTC, LTC, BNC, and even stocks tied to the blockchain industry like Nvidia.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersMagic Poop Cannon is one of the most popular BTC/USD analysts on the platform Tradingview.

Excavo

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersAnother well-known trader on Tradingview is an analyst who calls himself Excavo. The analyst is Tradingview’s most read BTC/USD strategist and has close to 70,000 followers on the platform. Excavo has written 1,227 technical analysis reports which have captured over 850,000 views. The cryptocurrency trader uses indicators like ‘long’ and ‘short’ positions on Bitfinex and other market trends to figure out whether or not the price of BTC is going up or down. Excavo also has his own trading Telegram channel and he discusses other markets besides cryptocurrencies as well. His last post on “The Unofficial Start of the Financial Crisis” gives a TA reading of the Dow Jones Industrial Average on the brink of a market slump. 

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersExcavo is Tradingview’s most popular analyst on the entire site according to all-time records.

Cryptobull

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersCryptobull (@Cryptobull) is a bitcoin and altcoin trader who’s very well known on Twitter, with 173,000 followers on the social media platform. On Saturday, Dec. 15, Cryptobull explained that BTC was slightly below the weekly 200 moving average (MA) and noted “Historically we don’t spend a lot of time here.” The trader is quite humorous in his daily tweets, but in between the slew of cryptocurrency-themed memes, Cryptobull gives his price movement forecasts. Besides detailing some short-term BTC trends last week on Dec. 6, Cryptobull had a survey asking his followers whether or not the “bottom was in.” More than 52% of the 6,472 people polled voted that the “bottom was not in” and BTC prices would likely go lower. Cryptobull focuses his energy on BTC trades.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersCryptobull tweets about market sentiment often.

Mr. Swing Trader

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersThe cryptocurrency trader Eric Choe (@Cryptochoe aka Mr. Swing Trader) gives his insights on a daily basis to 142,000 Twitter followers. Choe says he makes a “few big trades” per week and claims he can turn $1K into “whatever.” The popular Mr. Swing Trade also has a Telegram channel and makes swing trade calls on a regular basis. On Friday, Choe detailed how he trades when he’s “too busy” stating that he plans trades on Sunday, scans 250 coins, identifies up and down trends, sets alerts and retrace levels, enters on pullbacks, and exits at key levels. The trader says he employs this technique for 2-5 cryptocurrency trades per week. Choe’s website and trading group statistics show the trader usually has positions in BTC, XRP, ETH, and EOS.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersEric Choe’s trading results he shares on his trading Slack channel.

Xuan Haimmoer

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersThe cryptocurrency trader Xuan Haimmoer from Vietnam is a popular author on the Tradingview platform with over 6,000 followers. He’s been a top TA publisher on the charting website over the past few weeks and has published 571 posts on BTC, XRP, EOS, and other cryptocurrency markets. 14 hours ago, Haimmoer provided his analysis for BTC and said he wakes up every morning to look at the screen and watch the market. Haimmoer likes to note the changes that have taken place after his last analysis. The trader uses the Elliot Wave trading method as well, and at the moment his short-term target is between $2,800-3,000 per BTC. Haimmoer also runs his own trade discussion channel on Telegram for people interested in his trading reports.

A Look at Some of 2018’s Most Popular Cryptocurrency TradersXuan Haimmoer is an up and coming Tradingview analyst from Vietnam who has garnered a bunch of attention over the past few weeks.

Trading Strategies That Are a Bit More Realistic Than Wall Street Bigwigs

There are many other traders that cryptocurrency enthusiasts follow in order to get a perspective of what may or may not happen next within the crypto-economy. Some of them are not even necessarily dedicated crypto traders, but do speak on the market from time to time, like the inventor of the Bollinger Bands technique John Bollinger (@bbands). Other individuals to follow include the Whaleclub administrator BTCVIX (@BTCVIX ), Willy Woo (@woonomic) and the semi-retired cryptocurrency trader ‘฿TF%$D!’ (@CryptoHustle).

A good portion of digital currency proponents follow traders like the ones mentioned above, because their prognosis is more realistic than that of old Wall Street farts constantly shouting that BTC’s price will be $25,000 by the year’s end. These traders have been far more down to earth and a number have successfully called short-term cryptocurrency swings. It’s not smart to follow these traders’ every move, because even experts are often wrong, but it’s always nice to get an overall glimpse of how a good portion of pro traders are feeling. Another thing to consider is that some of the so-called ‘expert’ traders on Tradingview and Twitter have been openly criticized for trading techniques, shilling, and other erroneous errors. For instance, even though some of these strategists have over a hundred thousand followers, online critics have denounced a few of the traders mentioned above.

What do you think about the traders mentioned above? Are there any traders that you follow that we missed? Let us know your thoughts about this subject in the comments section below.

Disclaimer: The traders, methods, and subjects mentioned in the editorial above are intended for informational purposes only, and should not to be considered as trading advice. Neither Bitcoin.com nor the author is responsible for any losses or gains, as the ultimate decision to conduct a trade is made by the reader. Always remember that only those in possession of the private keys are in control of the “money.” 


Images via Shutterstock, Twitter, and Tradingview.


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BitGive Rings In The Holidays With Bitcoin Fundraiser – Crypto Briefing

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Crypto hodlers may be counting their pennies, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a time for giving. BitGive, the first Bitcoin 501(c)(3) nonprofit, has launched the latest version of its flagship donation platform. Titled GiveTrack 1.0, the new software release is designed to ease the donation process and increase transparency by allowing donors to track their contributions.

GiveTrack’s new version launched at the Latin American Bitcoin and Blockchain Summit in Santiago, Chile, along with a new charity initiative. Titled the Global Bitcoin Fundraiser, BitGive is raising support for four new nonprofits through the GiveTrack platform. 

“One of BitGive’s core missions has always been to leverage the potential of Bitcoin and blockchain technology for more than just simple transactions and to build products that can actually make a real difference,” Connie Gallippi, Executive Director of BitGive, said. “With GiveTrack 1.0, we’re providing a legitimate use case for the technology — utilizing the unique benefits of Bitcoin and blockchain, such as speed, transparency and security, to revolutionize the donation process.”

If you’re feeling generous, there are four nonprofit initiatives on the GiveTrack platform. Charitable hodlers might consider sending a few satoshis to Code to Inspire, the first coding academy for girls in Herat, Afghanistan. Donations will be used to provide computers and equipment to 150 female students, giving them the skills and knowledge to build programs and apps—or even dApps—of the future. 

Other projects include Desafio Levantemos Chile, which plans to provide sports equipment to 390 low-income children, and America Solidaria, which works on social projects in the poorer quarters of the hemisphere. Or you might consider a donation to Run for Water, which aims to provide a source of clean water to a small community in Ethiopia. 

Some donors are already lining up. Bloq, a blockchain innovation company, seeded the jar with $5,000 to be evenly distributed among all three projects. 

Unlike the beta release, the new version of GiveTrack uses Rootstock smart contracts and multi-signature wallets to ensure that donations arrive where they belong.  RSK, which developed the first Bitcoin smart contracts, contributed another $5,000 to the charity initiatives. 

“Making the donation process easier, and more importantly transparent, is a great contribution to making the world better,” said RSK/RIF Labs CEO Diego Gutierrez-Zaldivar. “[W]e are very excited that they have chosen the RSK Smart Contract Network to build this innovative technology.” 

This isn’t the first time distributed ledger technology has been leveraged to facilitate charitable giving. The low fees on Nano and Bitcoin Cash made both currencies viable avenues for micro-donations, allowing users to skip the high costs of cross-border transactions. Several blockchain companies —including Binance, Ripple and many others—have put their profits to charitable use. 

The author has investments in Nano, Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash, which are mentioned in this article. 

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Lawyers to Help the Russian Crypto Industry Deal With Inadequate Laws – Bitcoin News

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Regulation

In the absence of a comprehensive regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies in Russia, lawyers have taken matters into their own hands. A new advisory body of legal experts will look into cases where the current legislation does not reflect the specifics of the growing digital economy and propose solutions.

Also read: CEO of Romanian Exchange Coinflux Arrested on US Warrant

Legal Commission to Solve Problems Stemming From the Lack of Proper Rules

Lawyers to Help the Russian Crypto Industry Deal With Inadequate LawsDuring a round table discussion on these issues, the Russian Lawyers Association and an educational organization called Blockchain Lawyers have agreed to establish a specialized commission that will address the legal challenges in the crypto industry. It will also work with companies in other related sectors such as blockchain development, artificial intelligence, quantum technologies and the internet of things.

The commission’s main task will be to provide answers to outstanding questions and solve problems arising from the lack of proper crypto regulations, the Russian outlet Bitcrypto News reported. The participants in the round table expressed confidence that the new body will be able to give legal definitions to many new economic and technological phenomena in the digital space.

The members of the commission will help projects and organizations in the industry to overcome specific challenges. Some of them are related to accounting and taxation, for example. The Russian government currently treats cryptocurrencies as “other property.” In the case of ICO tokens, however, the digital coins can also represent property rights. The problem is that the Russian tax code applies different rates to these two categories.

Lawyers to Help the Russian Crypto Industry Deal With Inadequate Laws

According to Mikhail Uspenskiy, partner at the law firm Taxology, keeping accounting records competently will be extremely difficult until Russian lawmakers finally adopt new laws to clearly define the legal nature of cryptocurrencies and tokens. However, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, the State Duma, has postponed the adoption of the legislation that was filed this past spring.

Russian Authorities Favor Conservative Approach to Crypto Regulation

Lawyers to Help the Russian Crypto Industry Deal With Inadequate LawsAfter introducing a number of changes to the original texts, Russian deputies eventually dropped several key terms such as “cryptocurrency” and “mining” from the main bill, the law “On Digital Financial Assets.” Representatives of the crypto industry protested against its latest version and even proposed their own, alternative bill that grants cryptocurrencies a “special status.”

In a recent statement, Russia’s deputy prime minister Maxim Akimov defended the conservative regulatory approach. Commenting on the recent market slump that decreased the capitalization of most decentralized cryptocurrencies, he also said that authorities in Moscow do not plan to introduce any more significant amendments to the draft legal framework.

During the round table, the legal experts discussed a number of other related topics such as the need to regulate law enforcement in the crypto industry and provide protection for the rights of cryptocurrency holders. The new commission is expected to deal with these issues as well. The body will operate within the Moscow regional branch of the Russian Lawyers Association.

What do you think of the idea to create a legal commission to support the growing Russian crypto industry? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Diar.


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Litecoin [LTC] Differentiates itself from Bitcoin: Eye-opening Gain? – Ethereum World News

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Following Coingate’s twitter announcement on LightningNetwork being ready for deployment and set to be soon live on CoinGate, the crypto-silver jumped upwards gaining double digits in a matter of hours. Per time of writing the pair, LTC/USD is changing hands at $25.81 with 8.21% positive movement in the last 24-hours.

Source: coinmarketcap

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Additionally, later on, the same day – the founder of Litecoin and much respected throughout the crypto-industry, Charlie Lee opened up about his mission of getting LTC on as many exchanging platforms as he can to boost and support the increase of its liquidity.

For all his followers, he made it known that one of the leading exchanges Gemini has initiated support for LTC.

Beginning of 2018 – Charlie Lee predicted that the “Flappening LTC>BCH” will take place this year while ETH>BTC will never happen as he believes strongly on BTC’s cemented place as the leader of the crypto-verse. On Friday afternoon, in the midst of a further BTC sell-off to $3,150, BCH began to capitulate hard, falling below key support levels and underperforming the market at large. At the same time, LTC began to undergo a slight recovery, bouncing off its year-to-date lows at ~$22.5, posting the only positive performance in crypto’s top 20.

The performance led to confirming Mr. Lee’s 2018 flappening forecast as Litecoin is positioned right now as the 7th largest coin by market capitalization.

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The Intrinsic Value of Crypto (What the Bubble Hasn’t Changed)

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Hu Liang is co-founder and CEO at Omniex, an institutional trading platform for crypto assets, and a former senior vice president of State Street.

The following is an exclusive contribution to CoinDesk’s 2018 Year in Review

At the inaugural Consensus Invest last year in New York City, I was on stage with a host of notable names in the crypto world to discuss what 2018 would hold.

That event, in November 2017, would also mark the first time I announced the formation and funding of Omniex, the first institutional investment and trading platform focused on crypto-assets, following my departure from State Street Bank & Trust.

Just a few weeks ago, I was again in NYC for Consensus Invest. Now, with the eventful year of 2018 almost behind us, I’ve spent some time thinking about what has transpired and whether the intrinsic value of crypto has materially changed for institutional investors.

The Intrinsic Value Argument

I’ve always maintained the true intrinsic value of crypto is its ability to create decentralized networks that ultimately lead to new forms of businesses. In fact, in this article from one year ago, I made this exact argument.

The financial use case, beyond that of blockchain technology, is that of crypto as a new and standalone asset class in a multi-asset class portfolio, be it passive or active. A year later, I have not wavered in my thinking. What I have realized and adjusted to, however, is that a new asset class is not created in just one year.

The meteoric price increase in nearly all crypto assets a year ago has affected everyone from retail investors to institutions. While I externally maintained the price increase was not sustainable, there were nights when I thought to myself “Maybe this can go on,” even though I knew the fundamentals did not support it at the time.

I can’t help but think back to the 1996 speech of former Federal Reserve Chair Alan Greenspan during the rise of the Internet bubble, “How do we know when irrational exuberance has unduly escalated asset values, which then become subject to unexpected and prolonged contractions…?” Well, with hindsight being 20/20, I think we can say we now know.

But does this come as a surprise? For someone like me who went to college and started his professional career during the height of the internet bubble, this really does not surprise me. In fact, many have equated the rise of blockchain and crypto to internet’s rise during the 1990s.

In other words, saying their use cases have yet to fully mature.

When I was leading the Emerging Technologies Center at State Street, I actually equated crypto and blockchain to the internet of the 1970s, which would imply it’s even further away from maturity. The asset pricing bubble, however, came quicker in crypto than for the internet. This is logical as both information dissemination and business model transformation are much faster post Internet.

A Post-Bubble View

Is the fall of crypto really that impressive?

Let’s put it in perspective with the dot-com. NASDAQ, at its peak in 2000, fell 72 percent. Cisco, a bellwether of the technology industry, was down about 86 percent from its peak. And finally, Amazon, the biggest story of the internet age, was down a massive 95 percent from late 1999 to late 2001, crashing from $107 to just $5.97.

The similarities I’m attempting to draw here aren’t about the crash, but rather its aftermath.

We learned post dot-com that for a company to have sustainable value, it must have real utility. An online pet store isn’t very interesting in the long run, but an online book store with path to become the online “everything store” is compelling.

Now is when we really need to focus on delivering on the true intrinsic value of crypto and blockchain, turning away from undue speculation and creating real use cases and value networks. As Michael Casey so clearly put it, we caused the current crypto-winter and we are the ones who should fix it.

What does fixing it mean? As stated earlier, I don’t believe the true intrinsic value of crypto has changed. It is the foundation of a new business and economic model, one in which a fully or partially decentralized network can provide similar value to those of centralized networks with fewer intermediaries. It also plays a vital role in demonstrating that centralized and decentralized models are not mutually exclusive.

I often hear people and panel moderators asking “Which model will win?”

The answer is quite simple, both. Just as we don’t expect one company to dominate a market sector, we should not expect centralized business models of today to be the only model going forward. This plays true for the inverse as well; decentralization will also have to share the market. So, to me, fixing it means proving the decentralized model will work, en-masse, over time.

A 2019 View

As we greet 2019, I look forward to two areas of advancement.

The first is moving beyond retail to create a crypto ecosystem that empowers institutional investors to participate in the crypto and blockchain revolution. Let’s not forget that crypto is the only asset class in history that didn’t start from the institutional front, and as a retail-first phenomenon we’ve been left with an ecosystem devoid of institutional infrastructure.

However, the infrastructure and uptake are well on their way.

2018 has also shown that crypto and blockchain have clearly caught the attention of institutions. With crypto moving beyond the retail market, companies like Fidelity, ICE (parent of NYSE), NASDAQ, Microsoft, Starbucks and a host of Ivy League endowment funds have all either started initiatives or invested in the space. Along with global regulators, this concerted effort is now laying down all the appropriate functions and a solid foundation for institutional fund managers to enter the space.

The second and perhaps more important area of advancement in 2019 is a broader adoption of decentralized networks at the protocol level. New opportunities are invitations to startups. The important thing to remember is that startups don’t all succeed. Despite the setback of the ICO boom, as true innovations succeeds in garnering wider adoption, the true intrinsic value of crypto will be realized – and that moment will be a great one.

For now, at Omniex, our goal for 2019 is to continue building a sustainable ecosystem for institutions to easily adopt crypto as a new asset class. Along with the other institutions mentioned earlier, I’m a firm believer the industry will regain its prior highs, built on a sturdier foundation, as broader protocol network adoptions continue into 2019.

Have a strong take on 2018? Email news [at] coindesk.com to submit an opinion to our Year in Review.

Bitcoin on computer image via Shutterstock

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