Tag Archives: bitcoin

Nevada Becomes First US State to Block Blockchain Taxes

On June 5, the Nevada State Legislature became the first US state to approve a bill which will block local government entities from taxing Blockchain transactions.

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Nevada is often recognized as the “silver state” due to its significant silver resources. It is also famous for being the home to Las Vegas, the city of entertainment. A big chunk of its revenue comes from casinos, and money is valuable in this location. For the first time, the state of Nevadahas taken a significant step in paving the way for the continued progress of Bitcoin.

On March 30, Republican Senator Ben Kieckhefer introduced Senate Bill 398 intended to protect Blockchain transactions under the state’s Uniform Electronic Transactions Act.

The bill provides an accurate definition of the Blockchain, stating that it is:

“An electronic record of transactions or other data which is:

  1. Uniformly ordered;
  2. redundantly maintained or processed by one or more computers or machines to guarantee the consistency or non-repudiation of the recorded transactions or other data;
  3. Validated by using cryptography.”

Bitcoin transactions are tax-free

Senate Bill 398, the Blockchain-friendly bill, was introduced by Kieckhefer last March and was approved unanimously by the Senate in April. The move was made right before the moving of the Nevada Assembly in May, whereby it was amended, approved and then turned back to the Senate who confirmed the amendments.

It was then sent to Governor Brian Sandoval whereby it was approved. In regards to the approval, Kieckhefer states:

“The potential uses of Blockchain are limitless, and I’m confident Nevada’s entrepreneurs will find ways to use this technology to innovate and drive our economy forward.”

He added: “I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

Following in the steps of Arizona

This is the second Blockchain-friendly bill that has been enacted into law within the past few days. On May 29, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill which recognized the legality of Blockchain’s signatures and smart contracts.

Domino effect

Bitcoin influences and has a domino effect upon every state and company, and this law aims to promote both Nevada and the Blockchain community.

Let us hope that Nevada continues to become a decentralized Blockchain-friendly stateso that the amendments may focus on promoting honesty, integrity, validity and immutability – all of which Blockchain is known for.

One by one, US states are gearing towards the direction of Bitcoin. The digital currency that started small is now instructing the world and providing a path for how the future will grow financially.

The world is adjusting to Bitcoin, something never experienced before in history, and a world centered around cryptocurrencies is the future that we should look forward to.

Transparency and a better economy await with this law validating the legality of Bitcoin.

Chris Corey

CMO 

Markethive Inc

Contributor: Joshua Althauser

https://cointelegraph.com/news/nevada-becomes-first-us-state-to-block-blockchain-taxes#

TP

Bitcoin is roaring back

Bitcoin is roaring back

Bitcoin is higher for a second straight day on Tuesday, trading up 5% at $1,093 a coin as of 10:33 a.m. ET. The tw0-day win streak has tacked on about 13%, rebounding from a slump over the weekend that followed a Wall Street Journal report that the cryptocurrency's developers were threatening to set up a "hard fork," or alternative marketplace for bitcoin.

The new platform would be incompatible with the current platform, thus creating a split and two versions of the currency. That news sent bitcoin crashing 20% over the weekend to about $950 a coin, its weakest since January.

2017 has been a volatile year for the cryptocurrency.

It gained 20% in the first week of the year after soaring 120% in 2016 to become the top-performing currency for the second year in a row.

Bitcoin then crashed 35% on news that China was going to consider clamping down on trading.

But it managed to rip higher by more than 50% even in the face of several pieces of bad news.

First, China's biggest bitcoin exchanges said they were going to start charging a 0.2% fee on all transactions (previously there was no fee). Then, China's biggest exchanges said they were going to block withdrawals from trading accounts.

Still, bitcoin put in a record high of $1,327 a coin on March 10 as traders piled in ahead of the US Securities and Exchange Commission's ruling on the Winklevoss twins' bitcoin exchange-traded fund. The SEC denied the ETF, sending the price crashing by 16%. Bitcoin, however, managed to quickly recover those losses.

Two more SEC rulings are on the way, the next being March 30. Neither one is expected to pass.

Thomas Prendergast
Founder and CEO
Markethive Inc.

 

 

TP

Top 3 Types of Bitcoin Scams

 

Top 3 Types of Bitcoin Scams

TheMerkle Bitcoin Scam Types

 

It is not hard to see the cryptocurrency world has successfully attracted a lot of nefarious individuals looking to scam others. In fact, it appears there are more bitcoin-related scams showing up every single day. As one would expect, there are a few different types of scams that are more prevalent than others. Never change a winning tactic, according to criminals.

3. PONZI SCHEMES

Virtually every platform offering bitcoin investment should be treated with a lot of scrutinies. While there is a way for people to make money with other’s money  – trading altcoins, for example – no one has successfully done so on a large scale. Trading itself is a very risky business, yet it is also the most legitimate way to increase cryptocurrency holdings over time.

Unfortunately, there are quite a few large-scale investment opportunities, all of which will eventually turn into a scam. Ponzi schemes in the bitcoin world will always attract desperate people and shills, and there is quite an abundance of these programs available right now. Never trust any online platform claiming to let you earn money without doing anything.

2. MINING HARDWARE

The Cryptocurrency world is home to some great innovation, especially where mining hardware is concerned. Gone are the days of FPGA mining, as it is all about ASICs right now. There are quite a few companies who claim to manufacture hardware, and most of them will offer pre-sale discounts to anyone investing in that company. It is not surprising a lot of these companies offering pre-sales are complete scams, as most of them do not even have any ASIC research and development lab whatsoever.

One of the more recent scams revolving around bitcoin mining hardware goes by the name of Foxminers. The company provides no evidence of their mining hardware or research. Companies like these often trick people into depositing funds in the hopes of getting a cheaper new bitcoin miner. However, they will continue to delay shipping and eventually run off with the money.

1. CLOUD MINING

Perhaps the biggest industry of bitcoin scams comes in the form of companies claiming to run a cloud mining operation. One of the biggest cryptocurrency cloud mining scams to date goes by the name of HashOcean, a company that successfully paid miners for over a year until they finally disappeared and could no longer maintain paying out users accordingly.

Every cloud mining venture should be looked at very closely, as the number of legitimate companies can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Even then, ensuring a return on investment is virtually impossible due to volatile bitcoin prices and mining difficulty increases. Cloud mining can be somewhat lucrative if one is lucky, yet directly buying the cryptocurrency in question and holding onto it for the same duration as the mining contract will usually generate better returns.

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive

   April 28, 2017

TP

There’s a Big Difference Between Electronic Fiat and Cryptocurrency

There’s a Big Difference Between Electronic Fiat and Cryptocurrency

With all different types of digital money these days and accounts represented electronically, people often wonder what’s the difference between traditional electronic currency issued by banks and permissionless cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

The Big Push for a Cashless Society

Over the past few years, there’s been a lot of discussion concerning the world’s progression towards a cashless society. Furthermore, bureaucrats and government authorities worldwide have also bolstered the idea further by individual notes of tender from circulation by demonetizing cash reserves. Before the seventies, cash was a dominant form of money, but since then most people now transact with an electronic representation of their local currency in their day to day lives.

For instance, only 8 percent of the world’s money is represented by physical notes, and everything else is a form of digital fiat. Countries everywhere around the world have slowly been progressing towards a cashless society. In the U.S. the practice of electronic deposits into bank accounts became popular in 1975, and a decade later people were using these balances with debit cards.

Now throughout a few particular countries, large denominated notes like the $100, $500, and $1,000 bills are becoming rarer as governments are removing them from circulation. One country, in particular, India is suffering from a cash crisis as leaders started a demonization process last year. The use of cash within India is becoming less visible as Indian authorities are pushing hard for a cashless society by replacing it with digital fiat.

The Glaring Differences Between Electronic Fiat and Cryptocurrencies

 

There are significant differences between the traditional digital currency in your bank account and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. One of the biggest contrasts between the two is bitcoin’s deflationary attributes which is backed by the currency’s 21 million capped supply. Many economists believe this is a great benefit as the public knows that there are only so many bitcoins, which causes people to save, and purchasing power usually increases.

With traditional digital fiat reserves, there is no telling how much money is circulating, and no one knows if the central banks are printing money on a whim. Economists who are against this type of monetary practice, such as those from the Austrian school, believe the world’s citizens are experiencing a silent robbery called inflation due to central planners printing vast amounts of fiat reserves. Sometimes central bank’s like the Federal Reserve tell the public they are creating more money with concepts like quantitative easing and the recent bank bailouts.    

Another reason the world’s traditional fiat currencies are no good is because the electronic form is also used to monitor the public’s wealth. Cash is harder to track, and governments can keep a keen eye on funds moving around their electronic databases. Furthermore, other government agencies such as the UK’s GCHQ, the NSA, the FBI, and the CIA have been known to being spying on citizens and the world bank’s monetary movements.

With this power, central authorities can censor people’s privileges to move money in any way they see fit. There are clear examples of banks, credit card companies, and Paypal freezing peoples funds or halting operations because of reasons they don’t particularly agree with.

Censorship Resistance and Unstoppable Tax Protests

With bitcoin, people can move their wealth in a permissionless way using their individual sovereignty. Bitcoin users can utilize the decentralized currency for operations that are typically frowned upon by third party forces. This includes online storefronts selling pornography, illicit drugs, and other black market activities. Cryptocurrencies can also be used to avoid taxation as it leaves the decision of reporting to tax officials up to the user.

The infamous whistleblower Edward Snowden has agreed with this sentiment explaining to his Twitter followers on November 13 stating;

Coincidentally, new technologies raise the possibility of unstoppable tax protests.   

Because the public is embracing bitcoin and blockchain-based permissionless currencies authorities worldwide are trying to co-opt the technology. Rather than be disrupted, central monetary planners believe adding the word “blockchain” to the incumbent databases used today will lure more people towards a cashless society. One that will still be monitored, controlled with censorship, and even “editable” for those trying to erase fraudulent behavior.

There is a big difference between the electronic money used by banks today and bitcoin, as the latter is far superior for those who embrace freedom.

What do you think about electronic fiat currency in comparison to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin? Let us know in the comments below. 

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive.com

By Jamie Redman -April 27, 2017

 

TP

Bitpay Gearing up to Test Extension Blocks

Bitpay Gearing up to Test Extension Blocks

Recently, the Bcoin team released the specifications and particulars for launching extension blocks for a blockchain protocol upgrade. They have now nearly completed implementing these extension blocks. Bitpay’s CEO Stephen Pair responded with an article on April 24 saying that Bitpay would be willing to test these “secondary blocks” on a testnet.  

Also read: Bcoin Developers Plan to Test Scaling Concept ‘Extension Blocks’

Bitpay Gearing up to Test Extension Blocks

Pair said, “The bcoin team has released specifications and working code for the developer community to critique. At Bitpay, we think this idea of extension blocks holds a lot of promise, and we intend to participate in its technical evaluation”.

This news of testing extension blocks comes at a time of great divide within the Bitcoin community over whether Segwit should be activated. Pair suggests that extension blocks could solve the problem because these “secondary blocks” act as a non-contentious hardfork. In a previous article, Pair said that the communities need to avoid initiating a contentious hardfork at all costs. He said:

“One very important challenge we must resolve is how to successfully upgrade Bitcoin in a safe, deliberate and non-contentious manner. And we must be able to upgrade Bitcoin because no organism can live in its own waste products.”

How Secondary Blocks are Non-Contentious; Pair’s Three Step Formulation

This “secondary block” or “extension block” upgrade is non-contentious and will disallow Bitcoin to wallow in its own excrement, because of the manner in which it solves the problem of filled block sizes. In Pair’s previous article, he outlines a three step outline on how extension blocks could be implemented. He said the nodes will acknowledge new rules for these secondary blocks, and thus they will start accepting data.

“In this step, nodes begin upgrading to support the new rules. Nodes will validate and relay valid data that can be included in the secondary block (imagine some new form of transaction, but it could really be any kind of data). These nodes will not relay data considered invalid according to the new rules.”

In phase two, Pair suggests that a second soft fork is performed. However, he mentions instead of adding new rules to the protocol, old blocks will be “deprecated.” This means that transactions will no longer be allowed in the old block.

Finally, in phase three, the protocol will start to shed its old skin and stop rolling around in its own filth. Pair clarified this step, “After the soft fork that deprecates use of the original block has activated, all transactions and data will be in the new secondary block. At this point we can schedule a hard fork that simply drops the old block and adopts the secondary block as the primary block structure.”

Pair seems confident that the “secondary block” or “extension block” plan is the way to go for a non-contentious fork and upgrade of the bitcoin protocol. Of course, others disagree.

Do you think a “secondary block” upgrade is the solution to the scaling dilemma? Let us know in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock and fintech.nl


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even look up the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive.com

By Sterlin Lujan

April 25, 2017

TP

Weekly Round-Up and Cryptocurrency Markets Update

Weekly Round-Up and Cryptocurrency Markets Update

No consensus was reached last week towards Bitcoin scaling, in fact, the battle is getting protracted with each camp holding an entrenched status. Quite interestingly, Bitcoin price breached the $1200 line in midst of all the hostility and even went beyond $1300, however it has since reverted to the $1200s.

In a related development, Rhett Creighton, a Blockchain engineer and hacker who was with the Bitcoin Unlimited camp although left a couple of weeks ago has predicted neither Segwit nor Bitcoin Unlimited can activate. Creighton believes since Segwit needs 95 percent signalling to activate, which is impossible, whilst there is no way BU can obtain the super majority hash rate power to launch an attack on a minority chain to take over Bitcoin.  In his opinion a split is imminent.

In an unexpected move, the National Bank of Cambodia has indicated it is working towards a blockchain payment system for its citizens in conjunction with the Japanese startup Soramitsu. The startup is in fact, a subsidiary of Linux Foundation’s open-source Hyperledger project.

The most heartwarming news for the week was the revelation by billionaire hedge fund investor Mike Novogratz, that 10 percent of his net worth is in Bitcoin and Ether. The Billionaire was quoted by CNN as saying investing in the digital space was the best investment of his life.

In other exciting news, Litecoin gave hope to the ecosystem when it reached a unanimous decision to activate Segwit soft fork. Charlie Lee wrote on Twitter that this has taken too long for his liking.

With a twitter announcement made on Tuesday, the Cryptocurrency Exchange, Poloniex gave an indication it is delisting 17 altcoins. Cryptos that were axed include Boolberry and Voxels among a dozen others.

Valery Vavilov, CEO of BitFury stated at the  Russian Internet Forum in Moscow on Wednesday that more 100,000 properties in Georgia has been registered on the Blockchain. It will be recalled that in February, the government of Georgia signed an agreement with Bitfury to register properties on the Blockchain.

Markets Updates (As Of Sunday)

The third week of April saw some reshuffle on the top 10 of CoinMarketCap. As indicated earlier, Bitcoin has been able to withstand all the infighting and it is rising to the respect of analyst and community members. It closed the week at 22:00 GMT with a price of $1216.78. The market leader actually lost 0.44 percentage point.

Rising 2.16 percent at 2nd place, Ether was sold for $49.71. It was an improvement of last week’s $48.49 price score. Let’s see how it turns out for the king of Smart Contracts this week. 

At the third place, Ripple went down by 0.79 percent selling at $0.031222. It was a departure from last week gains.

Meanwhile, Litecoin seems to be cashing in on its prudent decision to come to a compromise to activate Segregated Witness avoiding the needless antagonism that has saddled Bitcoin. At the end of the week, it was sold for $13.49 compared to last week’s $10.71. It also ended the epic battle that has been raging on with Dash by taking over number four from Dash.

Selling at $69.19 with a downward trend of 2.79 percent, Dash didn’t have a good week like the previous one. Its $75.23 price then has declined abysmally.

Occupying number six with style, Ethereum Classic had a wonderful week dislodging Monero and closing with a whopping 14.78 percent upward score. The $3.68 market price was an improve to write home about.

Monero after losing number six made a slight gain of 0.09 percent to be the 7th most valuable Cryptocurrency. The Exchanges listed its price at $19.98.

Number eight is being held by NEM which plummeted 0.14 with a $0.030872 price. It is a great improvement from last week, as it has doubled its price.

At the last but one on the top 10 is Augur. It managed a scanty gain of 0.93 and a price of  $11.79.

Maidsafe was safe after bouncing back from number 11 to displace newcomer PIVX. Last week PIVX took the spot from the Scotish giant but it couldn’t stand the heat of the top. The market price was $0.232537 and it appreciated by 2.84 percent.

Gainers and Losers

Below top 10 to 20, Decred made a strong statement with a 20.32 upward adjustment. It is at number 11 and appears to be eyeing top 10 glory.

Waves deserves a mentioning since it also went up by 18.56 percent at number 17. PIVX went down 19.41 percent to be the biggest loser. Looks like its migration to a new wallet is upsetting its growth. Until next week, always read CCN for all your Fintech news.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

 

Chris Corey CMO Markethive Inc

Frisco d'Anconia on 24/04/2017

 

 

TP

Bitcoin Price Soars Toward $1,275 in 45-Day High

Bitcoin Price Soars Toward $1,275 in 45-Day High

Bitcoin price is pushing on with its bullish gains as the cryptocurrency continues to reach the dizzying heights scaled in early March during the lead-up the SEC decision of the Winklevoss bitcoin electronic traded fund (ETF).

It has been a month of continuing gains with a positive trend for the world’s most prominent cryptocurrency. Having started April at $1,068 on the Bitstamp Price Index (BPI), today’s trading shows price reach a high of $1,274. Bitcoin has now gained nearly 20% in value since the turn of April.

BPI data reveals trading on Monday begain at $1,241 and a sustained trading period has seen an upward climb for the value of the cryptocurrency. Bitcoin prices were hovering above $1,250 at the start of Tuesday (midnight UTC) into the early hours of the day. At 07:30, a surge spurred prices from $1,252 to $1,260 in a 2-hour period. A more notable spike followed in the next 2-hour period as price pushed upwards of $1,270 to peak at $1,274 at midday.

 

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At the time of publishing, bitcoin price has trailed off slightly with bitcoin trading to the dollar at $1,266 on the BPI.

Global average prices, according to data from BitcoinAverage shows prices at $1,271.97 at the time of publishing, with a day’s high of $1,275.

April has played host to a number of positive developments for the bitcoin adoption. The cryptocurrency saw acceptance as a legal method of payment in Japan on the very first day. It was soon revealed that large retailers were working alongside bitcoin companies to enable as many as 260,000 Japanese storefronts to begin accepting bitcoin by this summer.

Elsewhere, Russia and India have both begun acknowledging bitcoin at an early stage. Whispers from Russia, in particular, are pointing toward the possible recognition and regulation of bitcoin in 2018, in a country that previously debated imprisoning bitcoin adopters less than a year ago.

A committee put to task by the Indian government is rumored to recommend the approval of bitcoin as a legal instrument in the country, with proposed regulation and taxation.

Bitcoin’s total market capitalization is back above $20 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

For a live BTC Price chart, click here.

All time references are in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).

Featured image from Shutterstock. Chart from BitcoinWisdom.

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive Inc

Samburaj Das on 25/04/2017

TP

Why Bitcoin Didn’t Need an ETF to Begin With

Why Bitcoin Didn't Need an ETF to Begin With

The Bitcoin community doesn’t seem to be bothered by the US Security Exchange Commission’s decision to disapprove the Winklevoss twins’ Bitcoin ETF COIN like many analysts expected. The market’s stability after the denial of the COIN ETF led to discussions on why Bitcoin didn’t need an ETF to begin with.

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Why SEC disapproved the ETF and why Bitcoin didn’t need it

Bitcoin is one of the only currencies or networks in existence which facilitates payments between two users with the absence of a mediator or a network administrator. Within Bitcoin, regulations are non-existent and manipulation-free transactions can be made, regardless of the amount or the size of the transaction.

While Bitcoin wasn’t necessarily designed to replace fiat money, it was introduced in 2009 to serve as an alternative to the global financial structure and ecosystem. Satoshi Nakamoto, the creator of Bitcoin, wanted to present a cash-like settlement network in which users aren’t required to undergo impractical and inefficient settlement processes in order to send and receive money from one another.

Over time, Bitcoin as a decentralized technology evolved, with the work of the Bitcoin Core development team as well as Bitcoin’s global and open source development team of contributors. The Bitcoin network’s hash power began to secure the network from external attacks and welcome tens of millions of new users into the network.

As Bitcoin and security expert Andreas Antonopoulos notes, the truly decentralized, transparent and secure financial network of Bitcoin is beginning to replace the financial industry and provide the general public with a low-fee and faster financial network.

Before considering the fact that hundreds of millions of dollars and potentially billions of dollars could have been poured into Bitcoin as a result of the approval of the COIN ETF, it is important to ponder the purpose of Bitcoin as a financial network. Its real purpose within the global financial frame is to allow people to make peer-to-peer payments amongst each other, not to gather large investments within a highly and tightly regulated market.

Antonopoulos stated:

“If you measure Bitcoin's success by the approval of the incumbent and obsolete industry it replaces, you're doing it wrong.”

SEC’s disapproval is confirmation that Bitcoin is a decentralized network

Two main arguments presented by the SEC in their disapproval of the COIN ETF were that the SEC can’t protect investors from losses made while trading Bitcoin and that the Bitcoin network can’t be surveilled as easily as others.

Since the Bitcoin network completely eliminates the possibility of recovering transactions or refunding payments, it forces users to be more responsible. On PayPal for instance, a centralized financial network, users can ask network moderators if they mistakenly sent incorrect transactions or processed payments to the wrong receiver. Within the Bitcoin network, no such administrative team exists and users are solely responsible for their money and transactions.

If the SEC needs to guarantee investors and traders with an insurance policy, which basically means that when Bitcoins are lost or stolen or mistraded, the SEC should be responsible for protecting investors from any losses, it is highly unlikely that a Bitcoin ETF will never be approved by the SEC.

The official document of the SEC read:

"As discussed further below, the Commission is disapproving this proposed rule change because it does not find the proposal to be consistent with Section 6(b)(5) of the Exchange Act, which requires, among other things, that the rules of a national securities exchange be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices and to protect investors and the public interest."

The SEC nor any other government organizations shouldn’t be responsible for protecting investors from making independent financial decisions. Also, it is almost impractical to introduce a highly regulated market to Bitcoin if Bitcoin was designed from the start to replace regulated markets and inefficient financial systems.

Millionaires will be made. Come join us as we build to make millionaires in this revolution. Check the calendar for weekly webinars. Join me in The Coin Club. It cost you nothing. You are only depositing your Bitcoin, (to withdraw later), watching the system grow your coin and the commissions you also receive when others deposit into the system below you. Pretty cool.

https://office.tradecoinclub.com/register/infinitycoin

Thomas Prendergast
Founder and CEO
Markethive Inc.

TP

Yale Lecturer: Bitcoin is No Bubble, Long-Term Outlook is Bright

Yale Lecturer: Bitcoin is No Bubble, Long-Term Outlook is Bright

Is bitcoin’s historic rise headed for a major fall? Vikram Mansharamani, author of “Boombustology: Spotting Financial Bubbles Before They Burst” and a lecturer at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Yale University, analyzed the likelihood of a new bitcoin bubble in his LinkedIn post. Using five “lenses” he has developed, he concluded that bitcoin’s long-term outlook is positive.

Mansharamani noted behavioral and informational issues distort price at any point in time, but such distortions tend to disappear since supply and demand markets are basically efficient.

This might not always be the case, he observed. Higher prices could actually increase demand, according to George Soros’ Theory of Reflexivity. Soros holds that prices can trend away from equilibrium, creating booms and busts.

Higher Price Raising Demand?

At present it is not clear if a higher bitcoin price has brought more demand, Mansharamani observed. On one hand, rising interest tends to drive up prices. At the same time, bitcoin trade volume has not increased with prices. While trade volume is not a good demand indicator, it does reflect activity. Lense 1: half a point.

Another bubble sign is the presence of leverage pushing higher prices. It is not clear if bitcoin prices are bubbly. There is no sign of leverage driving prices. There are no futures contracts enabling large exposure with little collateral or options providing de factor leverage.

The amount of debt supporting fiat currencies is an indicator. Traditional currencies are getting debased worldwide. Cryptocurrency offers a non-printable currency like gold. Lense 2: zero.

Psychological Factors

Psychology is another factor. When people assume the belief that “it’s different this time,” it’s time for buyers to beware. Asset prices never increase indefinitely. Bitcoin is no different in this regard.

Agreement exists that cryptocurrencies are in vogue and offer freedom from authoritarian manipulation. Mansharamani noted Peter Thiel has acknowledged that PayPal did not create a new currency, but a new payment system, whereas bitcoin has provided a new currency.

Bitcoin has its dedicated advocates. Internet analyst Henry Blodget and CNBC commentator Brian Kelly have delivered highly optimistic forecasts for bitcoin’s value. Lense 3: check.

Political Considerations

Politics is yet another consideration, including both moral hazards and regulations. Regulations can distort prices of any asset by artificially raising or undermining supply or demand.

As an example, political considerations delivered regulations that encouraged people in the U.S. to buy houses. Buyers had Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac to fall back on.

Bu there are no artificial government interventions supporting bitcoin prices. Regulators, for their part, are trying to discourage bitcoin. Governments, however, can’t do much more than temporarily impact the price of bitcoin, as was the case when China recently tried to control bitcoin trading.

There are no signs of moral hazards surrounding bitcoin. The people who lost millions when Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy did not get bailed out. Bitcoin market players are buying with open eyes and are aware of the risks. Lense 4: zero.

Bitcoin Not Yet Widely Held

In comparing investment hysteria to a spreading fever, the variables of concern include the infection rate, the removal rate and importantly, the portion of the population not yet affected. The last metric can be seen as the fuel available to keep the fever spreading. Once it runs out of victims, the fever’s over. New demand disappears and prices fall.

The number of potential bitcoin buyers is big. The market capitalization at $20 billion is minuscule compared to its potential. A recent Twitter poll found that 49% plan to buy bitcoin while 22% said they were “max long” on bitcoin or “curious.” Bitcoin is not as widely held as it could be. Lense 5: zero.

In reviewing all five factors above, Mansharamani said the likelihood of bitcoin being a certain bubble only registers 1.5 out of 5 possible points. The stage could be set for it to become a bubble, but it is not yet there.

Short-term price corrections are always possible, but the long-term outlook for blockchain enabled currencies is positive.

Millionaires will be made. Come join us as we build to make millionaires in this revolution. Check the calendar for weekly webinars. Join me in The Coin Club. It cost you nothing. You are only depositing Bitcoin, watching the system grow your coin and the commissions you also receive when others deposit into the system below you. Pretty cool.

https://office.tradecoinclub.com/register/infinitycoin

 

Thomas Prendergast
Founder and CEO
Markethive Inc.

TP

Is the boom of bitcoin a bubble that’s about to burst?

Is the boom of bitcoin a bubble that’s about to burst?

The rapidly rising price of bitcoin is leading many to question if the digital currency’s boom is about to bust. Strategist Peter Schiff, for instance, recently warned “today’s bitcoin could be tomorrow’s beanie babies.” As of this writing, bitcoin is up almost 30 percent in the past month and over 100 percent in the past year. It has been hitting new highs on an almost daily basis and recently crossed the $1,200 mark. So is there a bitcoin bubble about to burst?

As of this writing, bitcoin is up almost 30 percent in the past month and over 100 percent in the past year … So is there a bitcoin bubble about to burst?

To try to answer this question, let’s apply the framework for spotting bubbles that I articulated in my 2011 book, “Boombustology: Spotting Financial Bubbles Before They Burst.” The approach is based on the application of five lenses and generates a probabilistic assessment of a forthcoming bust.

Most mainstream economic theories utilize a supply and demand driven price determination model that generally results in prices tending toward equilibrium. I say “tending” because most serious scholars admit that behavioral and informational issues can distort the price at any one point in time, but there exists an overarching belief that such distortions are rapidly ironed out. Markets are, according to this view, basically efficient. Higher prices dampen demand, and lower prices disincentivize supply.

But what if that’s not true? What if higher prices increase demand? Such a dynamic might arise for many reasons, but one eloquent explanation is the “Theory of Reflexivity,” as proposed by George Soros. Although it has many subtleties beyond the “self-fulfilling” logic that many ascribe to it, the underlying implication is that prices can and do tend away from equilibrium. The result: booms and busts.

So has the higher bitcoin price been accompanied by higher demand? It’s unclear. The evidence is mixed. On the one hand, it sure seems that as news about and interest in bitcoin rises, so does its price. It’s been seen as a safe-haven asset during times of elevated geopolitical, financial or regulatory risk and may even attract price-insensitive buyers at those times. But on the other hand, the volume of trading has not gone up as prices have. And while volume is at best a crude proxy for demand, it tells us about the general activity level. Lens one: half-check.

Another telltale sign of a bubble is the presence of significant leverage supporting lofty prices. And while it’s unclear if bitcoin prices are bubbly or not, I don’t see any evidence that leverage is fueling the potentially elevated prices. There are no futures contracts that enable large exposures with minimal collateral. There are no options that provide de facto leverage. Sure, some investors may be utilizing other collateral to secure credit that is in turn used to buy bitcoin, but this is impossible to track.

Another telltale sign of a bubble is the presence of significant leverage supporting lofty prices.

But more importantly, perhaps, we can look at the amount of debt that has been holding up many of the countries that back traditional fiat currencies. (Hint: it’s not a small number!) In addition, the fact that printing presses around the world continue to print more and more money implies that traditional currencies are being debased at an alarming rate. With a fixed algorithmic release of additional bitcoins into the market and a cap on the total number that will ultimately be issued, the cryptocurrency represents a non-printable currency (similar in this respect to gold). Lens two: blank.

Overconfidence and new-era thinking are the hallmarks of my third lens, psychology. Whenever individuals develop a devout belief that “it’s different this time,” buyers beware. It is rarely different, and asset prices have never risen indefinitely. Rather, they generally go up and down, and in this regard, bitcoin prices are no different.

It’s also clear that there is increasing agreement that cryptocurrencies are the “new new thing” and offer the promise of freedom from authoritarian manipulation of monetary instruments. Even investor Peter Thiel noted the promise of bitcoin by highlighting his own failure: “Paypal had these goals of starting a new currency. We failed at that, and we just created a new payment system. I think bitcoin has succeeded on the level of new currency.”

And like gold bugs, bitcoin believers tend to exhibit religious conviction in the cryptocurrency’s ability to store value. They often go further, suggesting the amazing upside potential they exhibit. Internet analyst Henry Blodget has even suggested bitcoins could be worth $1 million per coin. In fact, CNBC’s Brian Kelly described bitcoin as “not just digital gold … it is a once-in-a-generation investment opportunity, similar to the internet, growing just as fast, if not faster … it’s the internet of money.” Lens three: check.

My fourth lens is politics, broadly defined to include both regulations and moral hazards. As with any asset, regulations can distort prices by either artificially increasing or dampening supply or demand.

Just think of what happened when political motivations to increase home ownership in the United States nudged more and more people into houses. Without the political incentives, prices may not have risen as handsomely as they did during the housing bubble. Further, the moral hazard endemic in the use of government sponsored mortgage finance enabled lenders to play a game of “heads I win, tails you lose.” If loans worked out, the lender profited. If it didn’t, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac bore the losses.

When it comes to bitcoin, are there any artificial government interventions that are supporting bitcoin prices? No. On the contrary, regulators are trying to discourage interest in bitcoin. Just look to China, where its major bitcoin exchanges were effectively shut down last month by government officials. But as noted by Elaine Ou in Bloomberg View, “even China can’t kill bitcoin.” Bitcoin prices briefly fell upon the news, but quickly recovered and marched higher. They’re up more than 25 percent in the three weeks since China tried to control trading.

And when it comes to moral hazard, there are no signs of it in bitcoin land. No one bailed out those who lost millions when bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy. No regulator prevented or intervened to manage the governance disputes that arose on the bitcoin algorithm. Many bitcoin market participants are transacting with open eyes, fully aware of the risks of doing so. There is no FDIC protection, no Federal Reserve put. Lens four: blank.

Kolin Burges, a self-styled cryptocurrency trader and former software engineer who came from London, holds a placard to protest against Mt. Gox. Tokyo-based Mt. Gox was a founding member and one of the three elected industry representatives on the board of the Bitcoin Foundation. Photo by Toru Hanai/Reuters

An application of epidemic logic to the study of financial bubbles can help gauge the relative maturity of manias. If we analogize an investment hysteria to a fever or flu spreading through a population, the variables of concern to us would include the infection rate, the removal rate, and perhaps most importantly, the percentage of the population not (yet) affected. The last metric can be thought of as the fuel available to keep the fire burning. Once we run out of people to infect, so to say, the party’s over. New demand will disappear. Prices will fall.

When it comes to bitcoin, the number of potential buyers (that is, those still vulnerable to infection) is very large indeed. To begin, it’s not particularly easy to buy bitcoin, and that’s deterred institutional investors. Specialized exchanges, online wallets and the need to protect private keys create huge friction in transactions, keeping many potential bitcoin buyers away. There isn’t an ETF, at least not yet. Stay tuned, however, as an ETF is in the works. And if approved (we’ll know more later this month), the Wall Street Journal notes it might generate a buying frenzy with up to $300 million of inflows during the first week alone, a volume that dwarfs the currently traded daily value of any bitcoin exchange.

And with a current market capitalization of around $20 billion, the bitcoin market is miniscule relative to its potential. Consider that the value of privately held gold is in the trillions of dollars or that the global remittances (a potential use for cryptocurrencies like bitcoin) currently tally into the hundreds of billions of dollars. The bottom line is that bitcoin just isn’t as widely held or used as it could be. There is still an enormous population of potential buyers waiting on the sidelines. And in a recent Twitter poll conducted by investor Mark Hart, only 22 percent of respondents indicated that they were “Max Long” bitcoin, with 49 percent “Planning to buy/add” or “Curious.” Lens 5: blank.

So on my five-point scale, with five being a “virtually certain bubble likely to burst imminently,” bitcoin only registers one and half points. On the margin, this means that the stage may be set for it to become a bubble, but it doesn’t appear to be one yet. It may one day become a full-blown bubble with high bursting risk, but the evidence doesn’t suggest we’re there yet. Recall that government attempts to contain bitcoin have failed, anointing the cryptocurrency with a “forbidden fruit” status and driving new demand.  Or that the possibility of an ETF or other investment instrument may emerge to ease the frictions of purchasing bitcoin.

While short-term price corrections are always possible, there are compelling reasons to believe the long-term outlook for blockchain-enabled currencies like bitcoin is bright.

And the promise of smart contracts inspires visions of unprecedented demand for digital currencies. In fact, just yesterday, a collection of large companies including Microsoft and JP Morgan announced they would be forming the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance. Ethereum is a distributed computing platform based on blockchain technologies that features the ability to design smart contracts. The cryptocurrency native to Ethereum is ether, and it’s been called “the hottest new thing in digital currency.” As the standard-bearer for cryptocurrencies, bitcoin will benefit from any attention ether generates. (Full disclosure: I own both bitcoin and ether.)

While short-term price corrections are always possible, there are compelling reasons to believe the long-term outlook for blockchain-enabled currencies like bitcoin is bright. If you’re looking for beanie babies, you best look elsewhere.

And the promise of smart contracts inspires visions of unprecedented demand for digital currencies. In fact, just yesterday, a collection of large companies including Microsoft and JP Morgan announced they would be forming the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance. Ethereum is a distributed computing platform based on blockchain technologies that features the ability to design smart contracts. The cryptocurrency native to Ethereum is ether, and it’s been called “the hottest new thing in digital currency.” As the standard-bearer for cryptocurrencies, bitcoin will benefit from any attention ether generates. (Full disclosure: I own both bitcoin and ether.)

While short-term price corrections are always possible, there are compelling reasons to believe the long-term outlook for blockchain-enabled currencies like bitcoin is bright. If you’re looking for beanie babies, you best look elsewhere.

BY Vikram Mansharamani  March 3, 2017


From Thomas Prendergast

I have become a serious advocate of the Blockchain. Bitcoin is the leading edge and as it rises it will create a vacuum behind it. Look at Ethereum.  It has risen exponentially right behind Bitcoin as well as almost all the crypto coins in the exchanges. This is why I promoted MCW (Now known as Infinity) because their technology is leaps and bounds above all other blockchains (and coins). It is only a matter of time for Infinity Coin (XIN) to start listing in the exchanges. As the Crypto blockchain advances and breaks into mainstream, huge fortunes will be made.

I am now invested in another tech op called "The Coin Club" where your Bitcoin deposits will easily receive greater growth by at least a factor of 10 than in traditional bank accounts (as well as the increased value on the open markets). And the system also rewards you with promoting the Coin Club with commissions from other new members that deposit Bitcoin into there.

I am promoting “The Coin Club” for many reasons. Awareness of Bitcoin has broken out of the exclusive club of engineers and Bitcoin culture and has recently entered into Main Stream awareness. Bitcoin is in another rally and with the potential assignment of the ETF to Gemini (Winklevoss twins) offers a solid speculation of Millions of massive investment into Bitcoin potentially doubling tripling or more the current value of Bitcoin.

Therefor I highly recommend setting up a Gemini account ASAP. Go to http://gemini.com. There are limits to territories they cover and other alternatives are the following:

  1. Kraken:https://www.kraken.com/
  2. Genesis: https://genesistrading.com/
  3. Coinbase: https://www.coinbase.com/join
  4. Bitstamp: https://www.bitstamp.net/
  5. List of exchanges: http://www.toptenreviews.com/money/investing/best-bitcoin-exchanges/

Once you have Bitcoin or already have Bitcoin, then join “The Coin Club” were automated trading will increase your coin investment, where you will find your coin nest grow. Promote the system and receive additional Bitcoin commissions from your downline. Many people in The Coin Club are making 10-5- Bitcoins per mo9nth in commissions. Do not discount this system. There are many people I know who are moving millions of Bitcoins into the Coin Club because the trades represent substantial growth that5 eclipses traditional banks and investments.

Especially as Bitcoin climbs to numbers into the $10’s of 1000s, do not doubt it. 1000s of experts and pundits are convinced Bitcoin will reach 1 million dollars a coin within years.

Please do not hesitate. It sucks to not pay attention and regret not taking this serious.

The Coin Club
https://office.tradecoinclub.com/register/infinitycoin

Thomas Prendergast
CEO and Founder
Markethive Inc.

 

TP