Investor: Bitmain Firing 80 Workforce is Bad for Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin

Investor: Bitmain Firing 80% Workforce is Bad for Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin


According to several reports, crypto mining giant Bitmain is running out of funds.
And it could be bad for Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin.

$315.5 million worth of Crypto-Assets

Kyle Samani, the co-founder of Multicoin Capital, a crypto fund, warned in a Tweet that Bitmain would liquidate its crypto-assets to accumulate fiat-funds for its business operations. The prominent analyst cited recent media reports that have accused the Beijing company of laying off half of its staff. Among the fired – as reported – is a team that was working on the development of a Bitcoin Cash client.

According to a leaked financial document surfaced in August this year, Bitmain currently holds 930,932 LTC (~$28.6m), 1,021,316 BCH (~$176.7m), 22,082 BTC (~$83.3m), 312,424 DASH (~$26m), and 1,097 ETH (~$142k) tokens. At press time, the fiat-equivalent of Bitmain’s entire crypto asset portfolio amounts to be near $315.5 million. Whether or not Bitmain has already encashed some part of its crypto portfolio could not be found. But, according to Samani, the fact that the Chinese crypto mining holds a large number of digital currency reserves itself leads to a possible selling scenario. That, of course, is possible only when Bitmain feels itself running out of cash despite firing half of its workforce.

Is Bitcoin Under Selling Pressure?

Bitmain, like any other retail investors in the crypto space, would be less likely to dump its Bitcoin reserves, mainly because it is among the few crypto assets that are looking at a promising future as the new year kicks in. The same could be told about Bitcoin Cash, which Bitmain whole-heartedly supported during the November “hash war.” But since the firing of Bitcoin Cash development squad, the probability of Bitmain holding its Bitcoin Cash reserves looks meager.

Then again, layoffs itself are a kind of a bullish indicator — a company practices downsizing when it wants to govern its spending against its revenue. Bitmain, like any other crypto company, launched new products while driven the crypto euphoria of late 2017. But as the demand evaporated for its line of products – crypto-mining chips in particular – the company had to restrategize its priorities in hopes to survive the crypto’s most depressive phase.

What’s Next?

Bitmain could also choose to look for additional capital without spending many brains on selling their crypto reserves. The firm has already shared its plans to go public via a $12 billion IPO round in Hong Kong. Just recently, its application to the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) met the possibilities of rejection. The company could file another IPO prospectus in the future after fixing its infrastructure, beginning with a layoff that is already taking place.

Bitmain raised $400 million from a pre-IPO funding round led by Sequoia Capital. The company currently holds a 67% share in the market for bitcoin mining equipment, and it provides about 60% of the mining industry’s entire computing power.

Article Produced By
Davit Babayan

Bank of England Poll Finds Most Prefer Cryptocurrency Over Cash as a Gift

Bank of England Poll Finds Most Prefer Cryptocurrency Over Cash as a Gift


Respondents to a Twitter poll from the Bank of England

overwhelmingly chose cryptocurrency as their favorite way to receive money as a Christmas gift. Launched on December 17, the poll asked people to choose between digital currency, cash, bank transfer, and a gift voucher. 75% of the 16,799 voters said they prefer digital currency, while 18% responded with cash. The poll ended on December 24. The comments on the Twitter thread centralized around what type of cryptocurrency people would want.

If you receive money as a gift at Christmas, what’s your favourite way to get it? How will we use money in years to come?

5%Bank transfer
2%Gift voucher
75%Digital currency

Most said bitcoin was an obvious choice, but a few indicated they would like to receive altcoins like Litecoin or Ethereum.

Polls Suggest Long-Term Interest In Cryptocurrency

Even though markets have suffered in 2018, a couple of polls still suggest people are excited and interested in cryptocurrency for the future. CryptoGlobe reported on an AEVI poll from October that asked respondents to choose what would win the “payments race” for 2018. 68% responded with cryptocurrency. 16% said it would be “card.”

Former congressman Ron Paul posted a Twitter poll in November that asked people what store of value they would choose to receive a $10,000 gift in if they could not have access to it for a decade. Bitcoin was the choice for half of the 94,894 respondents. 37% said gold, while 11% picked U.S. 10-year Treasury Bonds.

Bank Of England Wary Of Cryptocurrency

Some people found the Twitter poll from the Bank of England interesting because of the central bank’s reservations towards crypto. In June, it released a letter to bank CEOs, insurers, and investment firms to warn about how crypto-assets “may give rise to reputational risks.”

An official noted how crypto-assets have had high volatility “in their short history” and run the risk of becoming vulnerable to fraud, manipulation, money-laundering, and terrorist financing. The letter did note the technologies underpinning cryptocurrency maintain “significant potential to benefit the efficiency and resilience of the financial system.” A spring survey from UK market research company D-CYFOR found how most Britons would not support a Bank of England-backed cryptocurrency linked to the British pound.

Article Produced By
Kevin O'Brien

Kevin has lived and worked in five countries and enjoys collecting autographs and playing musical instruments.

Crypto Bear Market Triggers Rise in MampA Activity

 Crypto Bear Market Triggers Rise in M&A Activity

In 2018 there was a rapid decline in initial coin offerings,

a slowdown in blockchain business launches, and a bearish crypto market. During this period, companies with good liquidity have been scaling up and strengthening by acquiring startups. 

 M&A Deal Frenzy in 2018

In 2017 the number of cryptocurrency and blockchain companies that launched more than doubled compared to the year prior. The current bear market that has since come to characterize 2018 has proven the ideal time for institutional investors and venture capitalists to make a land grab and acquire innovative startups. 

There’s been something of a deal frenzy involving cryptocurrency and blockchain-related companies seeing mergers and acquisitions (M&A), which have increased by 200 percent in 2018. M&A is the lifeblood of Wall Street and this activity is expected to continue to accelerate within the cryptosphere as we head into 2019. 

In an interview with, Danish Saxo Bank founder Lars Seier Christensen revealed that he is actively searching to acquire crypto businesses, saying: “I am also looking at a couple of serious fund vehicles that do extensive research across the space. Because of course there will be some gold nuggets that have been dragged down unfairly in this bear market as happens in all bear markets.” 

According to JMP Securities’ head of blockchain and digital assets investment banking, Satya Bajpai, the industry is witnessing a “land grab” for innovative technology, access to new markets, intellectual property, and talented employees through M&A, reports CNBC.  The most recent data from JMP Securities and data from Pitchbook shows 115 deals have already been announced globally this year, with roughly 30 more expected by the end of this year. This compares with just 47 mergers and acquisitions that were completed in all of 2017. 

Rundown of Key M&A Deals From 2018

There have been a number of key crypto and blockchain acquisitions this year, with one of the most active companies being Coinbase. The California-based exchange has not allowed diminished trade volumes to keep it from actively acquiring startups. Earlier this year, there were also rumors about a potential acquisition of Coinbase by Facebook, though this appears to have been little more than speculation. Coinbase acquired decentralized ERC20 trading platform Paradex. The company also acquired for an estimated $100 million, a platform that lets users receive cryptocurrency for answering emails and completing tasks. Another notable acquisition involved Goldman Sachs startup Circle which acquired cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex.

Coinsource, a Texas-based cryptocurrency ATM operator, became the first digital asset ATM provider to be granted a Bitlicense in the state of New York. Japanese insurance group Sompo Holdings acquired a 10 percent stake in Bitpesa, a Kenyan digital currency exchange and payments company. acquired British brokerage firm Primus Capital Markets for an undisclosed amount to offer BTC-backed Forex trading. Consensys, the software company established by Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin, acquired struggling space startup Planetary Resources.

Japanese mega ecommerce and internet company Rakuten Inc. entered the crypto space by acquiring an existing crypto exchange to fast-track its wat into the Japanese cryptocurrency market. Shapeshift completed the acquisition of Bitfract, a software firm which operates a service that allows users to swap from one cryptocurrency to many in an instant. Ernst & Young, one of the major global accounting firms, acquired technology assets and related patents from Elevated Consciousness.

Blockchain research and development firm Nchain announced the acquisition of a majority stake in the Bitcoin Cash-centric startup Handcash. Chinese bitcoin company BTCC was acquired by a Hong Kong-based investment fund. It seems the market downturn that has pervaded through 2018 has been the ideal time for large corporations to snag a good deal and secure a stake in the future of the rapidly developing crypto space.

Will M&A activity continue to accelerate as we head into 2019? Let us know in the comments section below.

Article Produced By
Tanzeel Akhtar

Tanzeel Akhtar is a British journalist covering financial markets for over a decade. She writes across all media platforms from traditional print newspapers to online media platforms such as Tanzeel came across the concept of Bitcoin in 2012 while eavesdropping in on a conversation at a London wine bar called The Arches.

Investor: Bitcoin is Undervalued Individuals Building on it Will Lead to Recovery

Investor: Bitcoin is Undervalued, Individuals Building on it Will Lead to Recovery


Over the last 48 hours, following a large loss on Christmas,

the Bitcoin price has recovered back to around $4,000. The dominant cryptocurrency, which still holds a market valuation of over $64 billion, has demonstrated wild volatility in a wide price range from $3,100 to $4,300 throughout December, struggling to recover to November levels. Last month, the cryptocurrency market was valued at around $220 billion. As of December 28, the valuation of cryptocurrencies remains at $133 billion, down $87 billion within a 30-day span.

Key to the Recovery of Bitcoin

According to Francis Pouliot, the CEO and co-founder of Bull Bitcoin, a company based in Canada, the asset will recover as individuals continue to build on top of the protocol and the infrastructure supporting the currency strengthens. Throughout the past nine years, Bitcoin has consistently survived major corrections, which on some occasions worse than the 2018 bear market, as the builders, developers, and companies prepared to support the next wave of investors and users during a market downturn.

Pouliot said:

The way I see the price of Bitcoin: there are fundamental psychological, economics and social tenants that seem to create a similar pattern. Price rises fast, crashers down but at higher ladder with the new skin in the game added as value hodlers is discovered by the market. As an investor my these focus on the tail of distribution of Bitcoin network/ecosystem participants. Top new people active with skin+soul in the game, momentum, influence, resources, commitment, ideology, full nodes, sovereignty. It is People that give Bitcoin its value.

Cryptocurrencies were not present in the past when the global market demonstrated signs of a full-blown recession, and as such, the narrative of Bitcoin as a safe haven asset is yet to be tested by the market. However, with leading economists expecting the U.S. stock market to face larger sell-offs in the first quarter of 2019 triggered by the rising Federal Reserve interest rate and the trade war between the U.S. and China, Bitcoin could serve as an alternative means of payment and long-term investment throughout the years to come. On Time Magazine, Alex Gladstein the chief strategy officer at the Human Rights Foundation,


To be sure, Bitcoin is still a nascent technology, and doesn’t offer cutting-edge usability, speed, or privacy. But engineers are constantly working to bring those attributes to Bitcoin by building better apps and on-ramps, upgrading the base protocol, and creating new second layer technologies like the Lightning Network, which could eventually mask and dramatically scale the number of possible bitcoin transactions per second.

Risk of Future Crash Declines

Throughout the past two years, many cryptocurrency-focused hedge funds have emerged with the intent of holding onto crypto assets as a long-term investment. In the long run, Pouliot emphasized that as these hedge funds acquire tens of thousands of Bitcoin, the circulating supply of the digital asset will decline, restricting the potential amount of Bitcoin investors could buy in the public market.

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Bitcoin Analysis

Crypto Zooms Past Paper to Draw More Users As Checks and Money Orders Lose Steam

Crypto Zooms Past Paper to Draw More Users As Checks and Money Orders Lose Steam


A new study reveals that cryptocurrency has surpassed

mailed checks and money orders as a way of sending money overseas. According to Clovr, 15% of respondents say they’ve used cryptocurrency to send money, while 11.8% say they’ve mailed checks and money orders.

More than half of the 707 people surveyed identify PayPal and Western Union, among other online services and traditional money transfer companies, as the most common way to send funds for food, household items and housing for friends and family living abroad.Traditional wire transfers, prepaid cards, cash and post office wire transfers round out the top methods for sending remittances.

Top Methods for Sending Remittances Abroad
  1. Online services (i.e. PayPal) – 51.0%
  2. Money transfer services (i.e. Western Union) – 50.9%
  3. Traditional wire transfer (via bank or credit union) – 25.7%
  4. Cryptocurrency – 15.8%
  5. Prepaid card – 12.2%
  6. Check or money order (via mail) – 11.8%
  7. Check or money order (online) – 11.5%
  8. Cash (via mail) – 8.9%
  9. Traditional wire transfer (via post office) – 6.1%
  10. Other – 1.9%

The study, conducted using Amazon’s Mechanical Turks to crowdsource data, also reveals high fees for sending money through traditional means. In order to send $500 abroad, banks charge an average of $52.05. Money transfer operators charge $30.75. The post office charges $34.05, and mobile operators charge $16.

The average person sends $3,315 per year and pays $585.99 in fees. Over 15% of people who used traditional wire transfers, paying the highest fees, reported being dissatisfied, while 10.4% of those who used money transfer services, with lower fees, reported dissatisfaction. The number one reservation respondents have about using cryptocurrency is that they don’t know enough about the technology. The second most common reservation is worrying the recipient won’t be able to use the crypto to buy goods.

Mexico, China, India, the Philippines and Vietnam were the top five countries to receive remittances from the US in 2017, for an estimated $150 billion sent, according to the World Bank. According to Dilip Ratha, head of KNOMAD, a World Bank initiative for Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development,

“While remittances are growing, countries, institutions, and development agencies must continue to chip away at high costs of remitting so that families receive more of the money. Eliminating exclusivity contracts to improve market competition and introducing more efficient technology are high-priority issues.”  The World Bank estimates that almost $150 billion in remittances was sent abroad from the US in 2017.

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Ethereum ICO Treasury Withdrawals Hit 2018 High in December

Ethereum ICO Treasury Withdrawals Hit 2018 High in December

Projects which had their initial coin offerings (ICOs)

on the blockchain of Ethereum have quickly liquidated their ETH holdings since June of 2018. Treasury withdrawals hit a year-high in December with more than 420,000 ETH being liquidated.

420,000 Ethereum Sold in December

Upwards of 420,000 ETH has been liquidated from ICO treasuries so far in December, making the month the largest withdrawal period this year according to Diar. The market research firm also reveals some statistics for 2018’s prolonged bear market. In January, the total amount of ETH held in ICO treasuries was 4,623,148. Currently, this number has been reduced to 3,052,168 ETH. The average monthly withdrawal is 2.45 percent while December has seen 12.20 percent of Ether withdrawn from treasuries or a total of 423,816 ETH so far. November was also a month of a massive selloff as over 290,000 ETH were liquidated, led by Tezos’ 82K ETH drawdown.

Sold at Year-Low

Almost half of the total withdrawn amount of ETH in December can be attributed to one single project – Filecoin. It sold off all of its holdings of 216,906 ETH. Another project which liquidated almost all of its ETH holdings was Substratum, withdrawing 8,931 ETH in December. Kyber, on the other hand, withdrew 66,454 ETH and is currently left with a little over 3,000 ETH in the treasury. The reasons for the selloff are undisclosed.

Looking at ETH’s $137.714 -0.01% yearly price chart, however, shows that the third quarter has been particularly unforgiving for the cryptocurrency. In December, it fell down to as little as $83, which is almost 95 percent down from its all-time high values at the beginning of the year.

Article Produced By
Georgi Georgiev

More Than 15 of Crypto Projects Have Serious Red Flags: Wall Street Journal

More Than 15% of Crypto Projects Have Serious Red Flags: Wall Street Journal


According to new research from the Wall Street Journal,

more than 15% of crypto projects raising funds through initial coin offerings (ICOs) have serious red flags that should give investors pause. The investigation, which analyzed the whitepapers of 3,300 cryptocurrency offerings and ICOs launched in 2017 and 2018, found that 513 of them likely committed plagiarism, misrepresented the identities of project founders, or promised unrealistic returns.

Significant Number of Crypto Projects are Highly Questionable

The Wall Street Journal examined the white papers of all 3,300 projects which it found listed on,, and To identify plagiarism, the reporters compared sentences in all the reports to find duplication, with reporters identifying over 10,000 sentences that appeared more than once. The papers were also searched to identify offerings where no team members were provided, and the publication reverse image searched photos to identify fake team listings. Lacking or fraudulent team, founder, or sponsor details have long been a red flag for illicit crypto projects and should be one of the first details an investor scrutinizes for accuracy.

To find “improbable” promises of returns the whitepapers were keyword searched for critical marketing terms like “high return” and then analyzed manually before reporters decided they were an unrealistic “can’t miss” opportunity. Of the 513, over 30 are already under scrutiny by regulators, and over half of the project websites are unavailable. Each of the over 250 unavailable websites was pinged electronically and also checked manually. Reporters reached out to all 513 flagged offerings for comment on the findings. Very few could be reached or chose to respond.

Unsurprising Results?

Tron (TRX), the 10th-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, received a red flag for possibly plagiarizing portions of its whitepaper, as CCN previously reported. | Source: Wall Street Journal The Wall Street Journal results are hardly surprising given other recent reports on the ICO market and the intense regulatory scrutiny, and increasing measures, against offerings. It’s true that many ICOs have failed, many companies took advantage of a new funding model to launch less than credible projects and, many other projects have been judged scams.

Forrester Research recently found that most ICOs have struggled to produce viable projects or adequately prepare for a cryptocurrency bear market. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been conducting an ever-increasing program of clampdowns on ICOs. In May, US and Canadian regulators launched “Operation Crypto Sweep” after concluding that fraud was widespread.

More recently the SEC has called for international support in continuing its enforcement as many ICO sponsors are located outside of the US but offer investment opportunities within the country. The global nature of cryptocurrencies is causing a similar problem in other regions. For the SEC, other recent measures including hitting celebrities who promoted ICO scams with fines and other enforcement actions.

Change Ahead for 2019?

That said, there are many very real projects to have been funded through an ICO mechanism, take the SIRIN Labs Finney and Brave Browser — both of which have produced working products — as examples. On the flip side, fraudsters take advantage of all trendy investment classes, not just cryptocurrency.

SEC chairman Jay Clayton has received criticism in recent weeks that his harsh approach is restricting innovation. There is hope that balance can be found in 2019, that credible projects will continue to innovate, and that the growing scrutiny on fraudulent offerings will begin to deter them. With increased attention from regulators, crypto startups are already moving away from ICOs, seeking funding instead via more traditional routes of private and venture capital funding. Others are looking to a new model, the security token offering (STO), seeking to bring themselves into compliance rather than eschew it.

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3 Conflicts That Will Shape Blockchain Tech in 2019

3 Conflicts That Will Shape Blockchain Tech in 2019


Beyond the flashy headlines,

though, larger trends are manifesting. I believe three areas of conflict, between six “incompatible truths,” have been slowly taking shape, and that 2019 will see them unleashed in full force.

1. Ideology vs product-market fit

Venture capital funding is dead, so they say. By crowdfunding token creation events early, blockchain startups have taken a different route to market than the unicorns we know today. Web 2.0 startups raised in tranches. Web 3.0 startups raise early, in bulk. Web 2.0 startups wrote a ridiculous valuation around their Series D. Web 3.0 startups obtain a ridiculous valuation on day one. Both startups look for product-market fit, but the biggest difference between the two is that Web 3.0 companies need, and advocate, their ideology as the final product on day one. From ideology all else follows. Ideology is the coordinating principle between all parties taking part in the ecosystem.

Amazon set out to to use internet protocols to transform book buying into the fastest, easiest and most enjoyable shopping experience possible. Although Google has kept its mission statement of “organizing the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” for over 14 years, its interpretation of the statement has changed dramatically.

Such a change is relatively easy to achieve in a centrally organized company. Now imagine that when proposing a change of direction, Amazon and Google needed buy-in from all their stakeholders. Would they still be where they are today? Maybe, but probably not. Aligning and evolving ideology at scale is tremendously complex. In 2019, we will see a shift. Open-source initiatives will still crowdfund from the garage-phase onward, but Web 3.0 companies with a profit function will to wait until they demonstrate early product-market fit, typical for an A-round. In short, 2019 will be the comeback of the VCs.

2. Market capitalization vs adoption

Consider two numbers: 131,000,000,000 and 10,000. The first one is the total crypto market capitalization in dollars, which is spread over 2,000 crypto-assets. The latter is the total dapp user base of ethereum. Now let’s look at adoption. Close to 14,000 venues worldwide accept bitcoin. Look at all that impressive red. Until you realize that in the U.S. alone there are 47,481 people named John Smith. “But, wait,” you say. “Crypto’s main feature is a currency!” Reality hits again. The most popular ethereum decentralised exchange (DEX) has just over 700 daily active users (DAU).

We could argue only a subsection of those active within the crypto space frequents DEX daily. However, games, which encourage DAU as a metric, aren’t doing much better. In 2019, we’ll realize that the valuation metrics we use as a sector are broken. The metric of multiplying circulating tokens with price is ridiculous. Together with exponential adoption of distributed ledger technologies (DLT) and crypto assets alike, we’ll see the industry mature in how we evaluate these new models of creating value.

3. Believers vs non-believers

Every time a Jamie Dimon or Nouriel Roubini gets a platform, a tweet storm to set the facts straight is not far away. A shouting match ensues between the “crypto bros” and the “bitcoin-is-a-scam” camp, doing little for mutual understanding or empathy. Historically, every major shift has required a strong foundation of support. Evangelists who keep challenging, challenging, and challenging the status quo, until it dents. The DLT community has got tenacity in spades.

Now it needs a new narrative.

The market is moving at a thousand different paces. We’ve seen teams who completed a successful token creation event, but were swallowed by their communities. The ones who keep their heads down, build and deliver (shout-out to 0x). Corporations who are tight-lipped about their stance on DLT, but are working like maniacs behind the scenes. Fortune 500 companies who are engaging in shiny innovation theater, but with no true intention to ever bring those PoC’s in-house.

Christine Lagarde, managing director of the IMF, got it right: ?

“?There are new and evolving requirements for money, as well as essential public policy objectives. While the case for digital currency is not universal, we should investigate it further, seriously, carefully, and creatively.”?

I would echo those sentiments for the wider promise of DLT, because we are not there ?yet. But we might get there in 2019.

Article Produced By
Arwen Smit


The Meaning of 888:

The Meaning of 888:

The triple number 888 is one that’s seen as positive and progressive.

If you’ve been seeing this number a lot lately, prepare for a world of abundance and opportunities coming your way in a short while. The number 888 or any other angel numbers are sent to us with a clear message about our lives.

Sometimes the message could be a reinforcement of our current behavior, telling us that what we are doing is right while, other times, the numbers that we see mean that we need to make some changes in our lives. 888 reveals itself when your thoughts and vision for your life are in alignment. It serves as a reminder that whatever you’re doing is right and that you should keep at it until you get your break.

In addition, you might want to consider starting new relationships, signing contracts and agreements once you see this number set since you’re more likely to be successful going forward thanks to the backing that you are about to receive from your angel guides and the universe in general.

The number 888 is also a sign that you should do everything in your power to make sure that your finances are in check. This is because coming into a small fortune as a result of seeing this number set may cause you to act in a reckless manner which may end up in you losing the windfall that the universe just sent you.

Make sure to double check all your transactions to make sure that there aren’t any missing zeros or misused funds. The number 888 is all about positive changes. This is especially true if you’ve been hit by misfortune after misfortune over the last couple weeks, months or year. The universe and your angel guides are conspiring to change the status quo and give you a chance at succeeding in your endeavors for once.

Number 888 may guide you to success either physically or financially, spiritually, or in health. Listening to the messages your Angel is trying to send you will lead you down the path fit for your life. Using positive energy and life cycles allows number 888 to send messages to his followers. Whether through screen, license plate, street sign, ticket number or money, seeing the 8’s in sequence is a sure sign the number 888 is attempting communication.

If you turn the number 8 on its side you get the symbol for infinity. At a surface level, this means that you have been working hard and you will soon reap the reward in terms of financial abundance and material wealth. You should expect money to come your way soon.

The angel number 8 is often related to power, this could be in political or other areas of life. People who correspond with the number 8 are good at working for a cause and achieving recognition for their work. Angel number 8888 is a Karmic number that is associated with abundance, wealth, money, financial stability, windfall and good fortune.

Those good deeds from the past are coming back around in your fortune. A double 8 or 88 is a message to keep your finances in check and to not be overly materialistic. This will lead to solid foundations for you and your loved ones.

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Seven Cryptocurrency Trends to Look out for in 2019

Seven Cryptocurrency Trends to Look out for in 2019

    Another year is coming,

filled with fresh optimism and newfound determination to make 2019 the year when cryptocurrencies take over. Having gotten their calls badly wrong for 2018, so-called experts will be hesitant to make bullish price predictions for 2019. That’s probably for the best since there are far more interesting things to focus on than price action. Here are seven trends that should dominate the cryptosphere over the next 12 months.

2018 Didn’t Play Out the Way it Was Promised


This time last year, all kinds of bold predictions were being issued for what 2018 would hold for the crypto space. In the event, the biggest trend of the year was one which few futurologists foresaw – stablecoins. 2018 will go down as the year the markets went south and ICOs died off, leaving a new wave of digital assets to shine – dollar-pegged stablecoins. Love, hate or tolerate them, there’s no denying that stablecoins were a recurring motif this year. Whether they will continue to dominate in 2019 depends to a large extent on how conventional crypto assets perform. Should the current bear market persist, or bite deeper still, stablecoins will remain ubiquitous. If more favorable market conditions return, however, stablecoins will be forced to take a back seat, leaving the following trends to joust it out in 2019.

New Privacy Protocols Will Gain Traction

With the Mimblewimble-powered Grin and Beam cranking into life, the stage is set for 2019 to be the most private year in crypto in a long time. The last few years of encroaching blockchain surveillance have stripped away a lot of the anonymity that cryptocurrency users once took for granted, but the fight back has begun. It’ll take more than a single privacy protocol to restore the imbalance of course, so it’s just as well there’s a host of privacy-minded tools set to come onstream.

Aside from the Mimblewimble coins, there’s the prospect of Bitcoin Core getting Schnorr signatures next year, which could open the door to privacy tech such as Coinjoin at some point. Before then, we’ll be seeing a lot of other pro-privacy platforms, apps and protocols gaining traction. Wasabi Wallet, a privacy-focused BTC wallet, will hoover up new users, while Ethereum may get its own take on confidential transactions courtesy of Aztec protocol. Stablecoins could get private too should Zkdai – zero-knowledge DAI transactions – become a thing. Pro-privacy projects like Dust and Loki should also make progress, while new projects such as Resistance, a privacy coin and accompanying DEX, are in the works.

STOs Will Replace ICOs

2018 was meant to be the year of security tokens until it wasn’t. That prediction can be rolled over to 2019, however, when it might just come true provided the technical and regulatory hurdles can be cleared by enough applicants. What’s beyond dispute is that 2018 killed the ICO, and no one is tipping the crowdfunded utility token model to rise again. The increased legal and compliance costs of holding an ICO, which now average around $1 million, have put paid to the vast majority of initial coin offerings.


The ICO market died off dramatically in 2018.

Amazix head analyst Jose Macedo believes the security token offering (STO) will become the standard model most crypto-based projects deploy. “While utility tokens are far from dead, what the industry has now realized is that few of these token economic models actually made sense in terms of long-term value capture,” he explains. “As a result, we’re seeing a lot of projects come to us looking for help in either launching their STOs or restructuring their ICOs as STOs,” adds Macedo.

He continues:

We’re also seeing a lot more STO infrastructure be built out in terms of quality legal, token sale platforms, book-building firms, exchanges etc … As of right now, we have about $1B worth of STOs partnered with us looking to launch in 2019.

While security token projects are poised to launch in proactive territories like Malta and Gibraltar, where regulatory frameworks have been drawn up, slower progress is expected in the U.S., where fundraising options are limited. There, the SEC will likely deem most ICOs to be issuing securities. American crypto-based projects are no closer to being granted Reg A+ approval to launch an STO, despite some, such as Gab, having filed the paperwork over a year ago.

Decentralized Credit Networks Will Take Off

Decentralized credit networks made huge strides this year in terms of infrastructure development. The tools necessary to facilitate collateralized loans, social credit and open finance have been fine-tuned and proven to work. 2019 will be when they scale up and start to serve the sort of users they were envisioned for – global citizens who’ve been excluded by the current financial system.

Crypto debt markets and credit networks will be bolstered by the growth of projects like Dharma Protocol, GEO Protocol, Nexo, and Maker DAO. Maker’s system of multi-asset over-collateralization will be emulated, having proven its robustness through extreme market volatility this year. Multi-collateral dai will see a wide range of applications in 2019, as the number of users grows with the number of assets that can be collateralized. 2018 was all about ETH, but in 2019 Maker will accept BTC, ERC20s and other crypto and non-crypto assets.

Other Trends to Expect in 2019

It’s possible that 2019 could be the year when one or more dapps finally sees mass adoption, but don’t count on it. It may also prove to be the year when the first viral  blockchain game arrives. At the very least, crypto collectibles and virtual reality projects will attract fresh investment, with non-fungible tokens (NFTs) tethering them to public blockchains to facilitate the trading of digital assets. Once Decentraland’s virtual world launches in 2019, a meeting ground for all kinds of crypto games and projects will be established.

The Bitcoin Cash community will continue to find new ways to spend and receive peer-to-peer cash, while the BTC brigade will have optimism that 2019 will finally be the year when the Lightning Network proves its suitability for something more than purchasing stickers. Custodial services for institutional investors will improve, bringing new money into the crypto space (but probably not propelling crypto assets to new highs). NYSE’s Bakkt will launch, bringing physical BTC futures contracts, and there’s an outside bet the SEC might approve a bitcoin ETF. Stripped of much of the greed that characterized the dawn of 2018, and with 12 months of robust infrastructure work completed, 2019 is shaping up to be an exciting time for cryptocurrency users from all tribes, countries and continents.

Article Produced By
Kai Sedgwick

Kai's been playing with words for a living since 2009 and bought his first bitcoin at $19. It's long gone. He's previously written white papers for blockchain startups and is especially interested in P2P exchanges and DNMs.