Libra a Cyberpunk Nightmare in the Midst of Crypto Spring

Libra, a Cyberpunk Nightmare in the Midst of Crypto Spring

With crypto winter finally over, I’ve turned my heart to the green shoots of spring. But my thoughts are not warm in this first article in the Dreams of Crypto Spring series. I break down the most talked about digital currency in history, Facebook’s Libra, and the dark shadow it casts over the future.

                               

Facebook finally took the wraps off their long-awaited digital currency platform, called Libra.

They released a whitepaper, a testnet and the breakdown of their digital wallet Calibra. The announcement generated big buzz in the crypto community and in the mainstream press, with reporters rushing to cover the details. Nearly every luminary in the crypto community chimed in right after the announcement. The initial reactions were cautiously optimistic. Most folks, including me, felt it was bullish for crypto even if Libra has absolutely nothing to do with open, permissionless cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Radix, Monero, Zcash and Bitcoin. Almost across the board people felt Libra would raise crypto awareness, get regular people (aka normies) socialized to using stateless money and upgrade the awful user experience.

Lawmakers reacted as they usually do to new technologies they don’t understand, with fear. Rep Maxine Waters, Chairperson of the House Financial Services Committee, called on Facebook to halt development. Governments want to make damn sure that no tech startup dares threaten their power to debase currency at will. Even crypto focused lawyers rang in, questioning its legality. But now that the knee-jerk reactions are in, more detailed and nuanced analysis is starting to appear. At first, I thought I might stay above the fray. With everyone commenting, what else was there to say? There was plenty of press out there. I was too late. But the more I dug into the write-ups and hot-takes, the more I realized how many folks were missing the real threats and possibilities of this big announcement. People had the tech details down but they missed the grand picture.

And make no mistake, love it or hate it, Libra is a big announcement. A few years ago the idea that a major corporation would release a cryptocurrency was laughable, much less a consortium of gigantic multinationals releasing one, including stalwarts of the old world financial system like Visa and MasterCard. But it’s bigger than that. It’s a turning point in monetary history. It’s an ELE, an Extinction Level Event for the old financial world order. When historians look back they may just point to this moment as the catalyst. But what does the future look like? How does it all play out?

Are we racing towards a financial renaissance or a cyberpunk nightmare of oligarchical mega-corporations ripped from the pages of William Gibson? To find out, I do what I do always do, dive in head first and start reading and listening. I connected with people all over the community, asked my patrons to send me the best articles they could find, and I read Facebook’s whitepaper and the corporate propaganda (aka marketing). What did I find? Come with me as I show you a brave new world of digital currencies and an all-out war between the titans of industry and the massive nation-states of the modern world.

Eyes Wide Shut and Empire of Tomorrow

To start with, while I’m not afraid to eviscerate what I despise about Libra, I absolutely refuse to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Just because I hate many aspects of this platform, doesn’t mean there’s not a lot to love. And there’s a lot the crypto community can learn by paying close attention to what Facebook did here even if this all plays out like a bad episode of Mr. Robot and E-Corp brought to life.

They delivered on three of the five keys to crypto evolution, namely scale, distribution and the killer app. That alone might be enough to conquer the known world. They also added a few more innovations pulled from the best of the best projects out there.We’ll start with the user experience. Let’s face it, the user experience in crypto is utterly hideous. Crypto apps are almost universally ugly and impossible to use for the average person. They’re even hard to use for engineers. Early versions of Netscape were better looking.

Crypto apps will never work like this in the future:

You go to an exchange, sign up, get logged in, verify your account, get KYCed, set up two factor authentication, wire in fiat money, buy some crypto, download a wallet, and then load up a wallet just so you can download and use a decentralized version of Instagram to look at cat pictures.

It just cannot work that way for regular people. Try getting your mom into crypto. If you can do it in less than two weeks you’re a genius. This was never the path to global user adoption. Without a better UX, crypto won’t even get out of the gate. In 2017, I pointed to WeChat and its ubiquitous mobile messaging platform as the interface of the future. A lot of big crypto project builders came to the same conclusion. We saw Status raise $100 million. Telegram raised a whopping $1.7 billion privately to build their next generation blockchain, messaging and mobile currency platform. Kik saw the same vision of a mobile peer to peer money and chat app.

But Facebook beat them to the punch with tremendous global reach, deep pockets and a consortium of corporate heavyweights who signed on as founding members of the Association, including Visa, MasterCard, Stripe, Paypal, Lyft, Ebay, Uber, Vodaphone, not to mention VC titans like Andreessen Horowitz. Just as Amazon had the power to make their Kindle ebook reader a platform with their combination of money, tech savvy and connection to book sellers big and small, Facebook and the masters of the financial and tech world have the power to create a platform and push it into the hands of billions.

And Facebook has interfaces down cold. They know how to build a compulsively clickable social media platform and their WhatsApp chat client is one of the most widely used in the world, as is Instagram, the standard social media app for the me generation. Facebook’s Calibra wallet will easily integrate into WhatsApp, Messenger and Facebook itself. It already looks super simple and easy to use, with the wallet sporting a clean and beautiful UI. Every single project in crypto should go out right now and spend some of their millions of dollars in ICO money on hiring a team of brilliant UI/UX developers. Otherwise it’s an extinction level event for your platform. If it’s not easy to use, it’s DOA.

Killer app solved.

Let’s move on to scale, business model and the power games of multinational corporations. A number of writers have pointed out that Libra’s consensus system looks a lot like Proof of Stake, but it’s more accurate to say it functions like Delegated Proof of Stake, popularized by EOS and other platforms. It’s a Byzantine Fault Tolerant system based on HotStuff, a consensus system created by researchers at VMware, Cornell and UNC Chapel Hill. Basically they have a bunch of giant validator nodes that process transactions on the network, while risking their own money if they try to cheat the system.

Delegated Proof of Stake is one of the fastest consensus systems in action today, scaling to thousands of transactions per second, versus the paltry 7 of Bitcoin and 15 of Ethereum. Of course, those big company Association members, like Visa and Mastercard, all paid $10 million dollars for the privilege of functioning as validators on the network.

Why would they do that?

Because they’re going to make a lot of money. And that is where the business plan comes into clear focus. Facebook built a killer business model for their validators. Before any of them develop a single app for the ecosystem they will rake in money hand over fist. Unlike other cryptocurrencies with a fixed money supply that’s slowly released over time, Libra’s currency gets created or destroyed as money comes into the system. If you exchange $50 for Libra, the equivalent amount of Libra coins are minted. If you take money out of the system, the money gets destroyed.

A number of writers pointed out the similarity to the IMF’s SDR (Special Drawing Rights) system but it’s better than SDR and goes a lot further. In fact, it’s borderline genius. Here’s how it works. Libra is backed by a reserve of fiat money. That will work out to a beautiful ROI for the validators. Fiat money will flow in from all over the world as people change it out for Zuckbucks. The validators could hold that money, invest it, swap it and trade it. If they hold it in the traditional banking system the interest alone is enough to make their original $10 million dollars look like chump change.

In other words, the validators keep the interest and you get nothing.

Your Internet funny money won’t increase in value like many other cryptos, so you won’t get interest and you won’t get new value. That’s because the Libra coin is designed to stay stable. It won’t swing wildly like Bitcoin and the other deflationary coins because it’s pegged to a basket of currencies, like the Yen, Dollar, Euro and Pound, which means it inherits the inflationary monetary policy of central banks. And that’s just the beginning. This isn’t just a blockchain with some stable money. In fact, it’s not even a blockchain at all despite them using the term over and over in the whitepaper. It’s a post-blockchain, federated database.

According to the paper:

“The Libra Blockchain is a cryptographically authenticated database maintained using the Libra protocol. The database stores a ledger of programmable resources, such as Libra coins. A resource adheres to custom rules specified by its declaring module, which is also stored in the database.”

It also has its own smart contract language, called Move, that looks strong and is designed to avoid the security issues of earlier smart contract systems. Even the first implementation is a good choice, written in Rust because Rust doesn’t face as many security problems as other languages due to its

emphasis on safe code.

“With “safe code,” objects are managed by the programming language from the beginning to end. The developer doesn’t do any pointer arithmetic or manage memory, as can be necessary in C or C++ programs.”

But blockchain or no blockchain and new smart contract language or none, what Facebook built is a complete platform and that is what matters most and what the crypto community is missing as they build the future piecemeal. Platform is the key word here. It all functions in perfect harmony together like a well rehearsed orchestra. Beyond pulling in huge swaths of fiat money to earn interest, the validators will develop apps and programs to run on the system, as well as goods and services. In other words, it’s a place to buy and sell things. That makes it a post-blockchain stablecoin, safe smart contract programmable resource manager, messaging system, and ecommerce platform in one.

Ecommerce is the essential component in the mix. Without that, all you have is monopoly money but nowhere to spend it, which is why most coins remain the darling of speculators but almost nobody buys coffee or Playstations with crypto. If crypto projects want to gain real traction and compete with this mega-platform they need to wise up and build a real business model like what Facebook has done here. It’s not enough to make money out of thin air if you have nowhere to spend it. You need an interface, governance, money and things to buy and sell all rolled into one epic ecosystem.

The Return of the Dutch East Indies Company

And that brings us to one of the most interesting side effects of the Libra coin. With a complete ecosystem and ability to drive rapid adoption across Facebook’s billions of users, it will be the first platform to really challenge the sovereignty of state sponsored money, the traditional banking system and the power of the state to print and distribute money. Who’s not in the coalition is just as interesting as who’s in it. No banks. Not one. It’ll be interesting to know if any banks have back end deals with the Association. Its members will be storing a lot of money and banks will want to know the origin of that cash flow.

The choice to peg Libra to a basket of currencies is fascinating as well. By pegging it to a flurry of other currencies they’ve started the planet down the path of ditching the dollar as the default world currency. The flip side to this argument is that it may actually cement the dollar as the world currency once and for all. As the Association mops up all the fiat in the world they’ll likely turn it into dollars on the back end anyway, so Euros and Yen become Dollars and cents.Maybe that’s why so many regulators are looking so closely at it. Money is the ultimate in frozen concentrated power and states will not give that power up without a fight, even to the massive corporations backingthis rave new coin.

It’s a war the crypto community always knew was coming but never really had the power to win. All the crypto projects to date are a rag-tag insurgency, using guerrilla tactics, staying anonymous and spreading out, but they’ve never had much of a chance standing up against the true might of the state if the state turned the eye of Sauron upon them. In a way, Facebook just did the community a massive favor. They’ll draw the fight away from smaller projects and Bitcoin to a more conventional enemy, a top down, hierarchical enemy. This is an enemy the state understands well. There’s nothing states love more than cutting off the “head of the snake.”

But this is no easy fight.

This is a well funded and powerful opponent. The governments of the world aren’t facing eGold, they’re facing the Association, the modern equivalent of the Dutch and British East India companies. All that’s missing is their own company armies. This isn’t some small band of brothers project, working in secret, trying to keep their Github online and their exchanges from getting shut down by hostile governments. It’s an alliance. An alliance with a war chest. Buy n Large?—?everything you need to be happy! (courtesy of the amazing Pixar and Wall-E)

The Association behind Libra has the money and clout to write and change laws. And when their Buy n Large platform boots up, that power will grow with each passing second as more and more fiat money flows into their coffers. Any country that stands in their way will face a flurry of lobbyists and NGOs that will punish regulators and rewrite laws in their favor or starve that government of brand new wealth while other countries flourish. It’s cyberpunk come to life. Massive multinational corporations against the power of state. And if cyberpunk tells us anything, it’s that corporations eventually win.

The Sky Above the Port was the Color of TV Tuned to a Dead Channel

For years I’ve warned that if the crypto community didn’t move fast the big boys and governments would take their ideas and warp them to fit the status quo. That time is now. If you want to corrupt the free-the-money movement, the formula is simple: Take a dash of power-to-the-people corporate marketing, like

banking the unbanked:

“Reinvent money. Transform the global economy. So people everywhere can live better lives.”

Just like Pepsi selling a fight the man message so you drink more sugary sweet cola, they’ve tugged at our heart strings with all those poor 3rd world people who just can’t get a bank account and buy things. Next you rope in the old world financial titans who’ve been patenting up the most basic and obvious ideas in the blockchain space to sue the hell out of any competitors to their global hegemony.

After that, make it simple and easy to use so that people who don’t care about trivial things like their privacy because they have “nothing to hide” will lap it up like good little lemmings. Lastly, trim it all down with key escrow and you’ve safely shut down the crypto revolution. Don’t worry Citizen, Facebook helpfully keeps your private keys for you so you don’t have any control over your money, just like the regular banking system! And of course, they won’t tie your money to an

ID according to the whitepaper:

“The Libra Blockchain is pseudonymous and allows users to hold one or more addresses that are not linked to their real-world identity.”

Trust us.

But we know that’s not true because “Calibra will require users to go through an intensive Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC)” on-boarding for every user. That’s just one of dozens of contradictions if you look close and read between the lines. We have a blockchain, non-blockchain. We have a permissioned system that will “transition to a permissionless system” with no explanation whatsoever of how they will pull off that little feat. We have a currency not tied to an ID but an intensive AML process.

Just like the Indian Aadhaar “voluntary” ID system where the system wasn’t supposed to keep people’s history and link it all together, all it took was the Indian government passing a law and now they have to keep the data. Then the government followed that by making an Aadhaar ID essential to open a bank account or keep your bank account open and suddenly voluntary is mandatory and we’ve slid as far down the slippery slope as possible.

Pretty soon a centralized digital ID will be absolutely required just to use the system, all for your protection. And then companies and governments will know everything you do and everywhere you go and everything you spend your money on as they track you with advanced AI/ML algorithms. If the dream of crypto enthusiasts was to restore self-sovereign money, they failed. Either that or this is a major setback and the rebel alliance needs to fall back and regroup fast.

Vader is and always was your daddy. These companies took the best ideas of the crypto community and channeled them safely back through known choke points. Maybe you thought you were working on the hope of the future when you got into crypto? All it would take was some patience and time and you could tunnel your way out of captivity. You didn’t realize your prison escape club was sponsored by the prison association all along. You were just tunneling into another part of the prison.

But there’s still hope.

Proprietary platforms often take an early lead because they can do just what Facebook did, design a fabulous interface, scale fast and hurl tons of money at the problem. Eventually though, open platforms catch up. Open source software ate proprietary software in the enterprise and the cloud over the last decade. Every major innovation starts in open source now, whether that is big data, or cloud, or AI. Open projects are slow moving, made by rebels and misfits standing against the galactic empire. They start off ugly but eventually find their way through a slow evolution that wins out over the directed evolution of proprietary systems.

At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

It doesn’t always work out that way. Apple builds walled gardens that work surprisingly well and it made them the biggest company in the world. Sometimes the rebel alliance pulls it out at the last minute, just like in the movies, but sometimes the empire wins.

It’s hard not to get depressed the more I look at Libra.

It’s everything I wanted for the crypto community, scalability, usability and a robust ecosystem of merchants and businesses supporting it with their hard earned money. They even built in a secondary investment coin for their corporate titans, basically a deflationary coin that rewards their oligarchy, and gamified money, because validators can give away Libra as rewards, just like I’ve been pushing for years.

And yet it’s everything that we should hate and fear.

Panopticon money. Lack of control. Identities linked to everything we do so that companies know where we live, where we shop, who we’re sleeping with, who we’re friends with and more. They can track our digital and real life right down to the nanosecond. And they can see through your wallet like Superman seeing through walls and into your past, present and even into your future with predictive analytics. They will control the flow of money and make or break businesses, communities and geographies.

And that is a disaster for the world.

We still have a chance to make a true break from the old world financial systems, to set money free, to separate money from state, to give control back to the people.

Facebook gave you an opening.

Let their lawyers deal with the might of terrified old world money titans. Let their lobbyists hammer out new laws and make and break nations that stand with them or against them.

Now is your chance.

If you haven’t hired every single developer and UX designer you can find, and reached out to every architect and business mastermind to help you craft a comprehensive platform and business plan then you need to move fast.

We’re running out of time.

Soon there won’t be any market left and Facebook will have stolen your dream right out from under your nose and turned it into a black mirror. If Libra is the ultimate winner in the space and speeds to world market dominance then crypto was the biggest waste of potential freedom ever invented.

Article Produced By
Daniel Jeffries

Daniel Jeffries
I am an author, futurist, systems architect, and thinker.

https://hackernoon.com/libra-a-cyberpunk-nightmare-in-the-midst-of-crypto-spring-5543b6f6e34b

The crypto-winter is over? What was said at this year’s UNCHAIN Convention in Berlin

The crypto-winter is over? What was said at this year’s UNCHAIN Convention in Berlin

                             

 

On June 14-15, Berlin’s creative cluster Säälchen became a Bitcoin village,

where three hundred blockchain entrepreneurs and enthusiasts from Germany and abroad gathered to discuss the current state of affairs in crypto and future outlooks. This year, UNCHAIN Convention, the second edition of one of the world’s leading blockchain events, was moved from Hamburg to the German capital. As expected, the event was completely far from the classic conference format and was accompanied by outdoor activities and a boat trip along the Spree. The hot days in Berlin were in tune with heated discussions about the nature of cryptocurrency, the use of blockchains and layer-2 solutions, as well as by quite bold talks of politics that are only possible among true fans of decentralization.

This mood was intentional, as Unchain Convention is not just a conference, but a gathering of the global crypto community. Accordingly, a significant proportion of the guests came from abroad, including keynote speakers: Chairman at Bitcoin Foundation Brock Pierce, Wall Street Veteran & Bitcoin Enthusiast Tone Vays, and Co-Founder of Coinsilium Eddy Travia. Many attendees were from Eastern Europe – the Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Ukraine and Russia – and

from South America. 

“This year’s Convention has been a blast. It hasn’t been a formal conference but a celebration and festival of passionated crypto entrepreneurs who not only are going for but will change the game and world we are living in,” Oskar Giese, UNCHAIN Convention founder. 

Noteworthy that the community has clearly matured to self-irony and a sober analysis of errors and perspectives. Hardly anyone has built his speech on enthusiasm and pathos for cryptocurrency, whether it is Bitcoin or altcoins. The most radical and nihilistic opinions about cryptocurrencies sounded from the scene, to the extent that they are all centralized and worth nothing. This opinion, however, was opposed by many. Such was the discussion initiated by Tone Vays and picked up by Eddy Travia, Steve Beauregard and Marc P. Bernegger. 

A subsequent portion of skepticism, however, mixed with optimism, was thrown into the public during the fireside chat where Aaron Koenig interviewed Bitcoin investment legend Brock Pierce. Speaking eloquently about his career and cryptocurrency, Pierce said an important thing that could become the slogan of the event and recent weeks: “the crypto-winter is over.” However, according to him, only four to five blockchains have prospects to build their own ecosystems, since most of the projects simply lack funds to do so. 

A further discussion of a mix of topics in the “blockchain technologies” block was accompanied by presentations of a colorful array of non-monetary applications of blockchains. Different aspects of the rejuvenation of Bitcoin development could also be seen in speeches by Christian Decker, Igor Korsakov and Stefan Snigirev, focused mainly on the projects related to the Lightning Network that is recognized as one of the most effective remedies to

Bitcoin and blockchain scaling. 

“The Lightning Network renders 99,85% of all Altcoins obsolete. I did the math myself,” Igor Korsakov, Bluewallet’s lead developer & co-creator. “The Lightning Network is unleashing a fresh set of creativity, chaotic beauty and community spirit,” Jeff Gallas, CEO and Co-Founder of Fulmo. 

Overall, despite some skepticism, the confidence in the further decentralization of the world remains high among the community, so this year’s UNCHAIN Convention is thought to be not the last, with the third edition of the stellar event to be

expected in 2020. 

“Beyond the price hype is a computing revolution,” Alena Vranova, Head of Strategy at CASA.

Article Produced By
Bitcoin Garden

This content is brought to you by the Bitcoin Garden staff.

https://bitcoingarden.org/the-crypto-winter-is-over-what-was-said-at-this-years-unchain-convention-in-berlin/

57 Million ETH Transfer Commanding Ethereum Market Price What More To Expect?

$57 Million ETH Transfer Commanding Ethereum Market Price, What More To Expect?

                                

Ethereum (ETH), the 2nd largest cryptocurrency by market,

has constantly followed Bitcoin (BTC) price surging course, as the crypto market enters the supposedly bullish season. The buying pressure has drastically increased, and the crypto whales keep moving their precious assets from one account to another. A recent Ethereum (ETH) whale fund transfer has been reported, with $57 Million worth of ETH moved, leaving a positive impact on its price, as it keeps surging without relenting.

Bitcoin has obviously led the price growth race in the market, while other cryptocurrencies follow. Ethereum (ETH) has also managed pace along, but it is still lagging behind as BTC threads up with great momentum .Ethereum has been one of the best performers among the top 10 cryptocurrencies. It seems obvious that altcoins that are ready to join Bitcoin’s price growth would benefit greatly as the crypto market capitalisation keeps appreciating on daily basis.

Ethereum Whale Moves $57 Million Worth of ETH

Crypto whales’ activity is a big deal that can never be underestimated. Their past impacts in commanding the prices of cryptocurrencies in the market have been quite enormous.Also READ  Why Government and Binance Investment In TravelbyBit Could Take Crypto Adoption To A New Level. Sometimes it favours the market and the otherwise can also occur, but the recent huge transaction of ETH is indeed beneficial to the price of the digital currency, as it continues to trend upward over the last 24 hours.

According to Etherscan, a huge transaction of 173,932 ETH was moved from 0x60cd748f838651c003c24dbde33c8885d504ed9d to 0xd3e3664b58adf11c8f4d46f7bb666cf2e97f9029, which worth relatively $57 Million at press time. The transfer was effected at 03:41:04 AM +UTC, on 3rd June 2019. Ethereum has been enjoying relatively 8% price upsurge in the last 24 hours. At the time of filing this report, ETH is trading at $338.12, with over 36 Billion market capitalisation, and $12,168,825,632 24H volume.

Bitcoin’s Price Rally and How It Has Impacted the Market, Especially Ethereum (ETH)

Bitcoin (BTC), the largest cryptocurrency by market cap has been initiating a distinct and beautiful price rally in the market. However, some altcoins have been reluctant in joining the pace. Top 10 cryptocurrencies such as Ripple XRP, Litecoin (LTC), Binance (BNB), EOS, Bitcoin SV (BSV) and others have failed to replicate the present price trend in the market. While the likes of Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Tron (TRX) are so far the best performers that are ready to share the market lots with Bitcoin (BTC), and more is expected from them in coming day.

Also READ  Good News For Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), Ethereum (ETH), Verge (XVG): NetCents Crypto Credit Card Nears Launch

Ethereum is seemingly natured to grow concurrently with Bitcoin, due to its past and consistent reactions to the surging trend of the digital currency. However, this changed a bit about two weeks ago, when BTC kept growing with no positive impact on ETH. The recent Bitcoin price rally is greatly favouring the growth of Ethereum, giving its investors good investment return and convincing the potential suitors in leveraging on this consistent price appreciation.

Article Produced By
Solomon Odunayo


I am a creative writer and a cryptocurrency enthusiast. Learning and writing about Bitcoin (BTC), Ripple's XRP, and TRON (TRX) are my hobbies.

https://todaysgazette.com/ethereum-whale-made-huge-eth-transfer-market-price-spikes-up/

Prominent Twitter Trader Reveals Huge 2019 Gains From Cryptoassets

Prominent Twitter Trader Reveals Huge 2019 Gains From Cryptoassets

A prominent Twitter influencer in the investing/financial space, Charlie Bilello, tweeted out the performance of cryptocurrencies which have made the biggest increases this year, as well as the performance of many traditional asset classes.

                             

As we reach the midpoint of 2019, it’s looking increasingly likely

that we are once again in the midst of another bullish phase throughout the wider cryptocurrency market, with the price of Bitcoin and several other major crypto assets rising astronomically during the past few months. Many investors have seen this as a welcome break from the prolonged bear market which started at the beginning of 2018 and saw the majority of major cryptocurrencies lose over 90% of their value since their all-time highs, bringing the total crypto market cap down with it.

While it’s easy to get carried away in the cryptocurrency markets as a blockchain enthusiast, many traders, investors, and long term holders seldom stop to think about how their cryptocurrency gains would compare to those realized from traditional asset classes. On the other hand, crypto investments are still eyed with caution, or outright shunned, by some traditional investment professionals, with legendary American investor Warren Buffet calling Bitcoin a ‘Delusion’ earlier this year in an interview with CNBC. However, it seems that many traders who don’t want to risk exposure to cryptocurrency assets may be missing out on serious potential gains, as one prominent investor pointed out this week.

Crypto Vs. Classic Investments

Prominent trader, writer and Twitter personality, Charlie Bilello, who boasts over 110,000 Twitter followers, posted a series of tweets on Tuesday comparing both the returns traders would have gained from traditional assets such as commodities and the S&P 500, with Bitcoin (BTC), and a whole host of other cryptocurrencies since the beginning of 2019. Interestingly, those who had invested in gold or bonds would have seen a return of just +5% since the beginning of 2019, -3% lower than even the worst performing major cryptocurrency, Stellar Lumens (XLM), which has yielded +8% since the beginning of the year.

Investing in stock market indices such as the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq 100 would have yielded fairly decent gains of +18% and +21% respectively, and real estate investment trusts, or REITs, would have yielded on average a strong gain of +22%. On the other hand, investing in Oil, which has seen some volatility this year would have seen a gain of +16%. Comparatively, Ripple (XRP), the third-highest cryptocurrency by market-cap at the time of writing, would have yielded investors +16% since the beginning of the year, whereas the second-highest crypto by market-cap, Ethereum (ETH), yielded a huge +87%, and Monero (XMR) would have netted it’s investors a similarly impressive +98%.

However, eight of the major cap cryptos, which Bilello also tweeted about, would have yielded their investor’s triple-figure percentage gains since the start of 2019. The biggest gainers may come as a surprise, however, as it’s not Bitcoin which has led the 2019 rally but instead leading exchange coin Binance coin (BNB). Investing in Binance coin at the start of this year would have yielded investors a massive +479%, multiplying their initial investment many times over. Likewise, Litecoin, often referred to as digital silver, has far outperformed real precious metals, yielding over +320% for its investors.

Other high gainers for investors who bought and held from the start of 2019 include third-generation cryptocurrency Cardano, which yielded +110%, dApp focused blockchain EOS which gained +150%, and even Bitcoin SV, Craig Wright’s new blockchain offering which was launched after a hard-fork from the Bitcoin Cash protocol in November 2018, would have yielded over +140% so far this year. Overall, there’s been some seriously strong price gains so far during 2019, which have somewhat balanced out bear market losses and there’s potential to hold this upward momentum during the rest of 2019.

Comparable Gainers

Such gains are almost unheard of in the day-to-day trading of traditional assets or investments, with the only similar gains coming from initial public offerings (IPOs), or more recently, cannabis stocks – which have seen gains of hundreds of percent. For example, Cannabis branding company TransCanna Holdings, gained a huge 586% since the beginning of 2019.

Likewise, the Beyond Meat (BYND) IPO, the plant-based burger company which launched earlier this year, has gained over 600% since it began publicly trading, becoming one of the best stock market performers in recent years, and outperforming even the highest gainers of the top market cap cryptocurrencies. Conversely, while many of the top 20 market cap cryptocurrencies have risen in some capacity so far during 2019, ride-hailing apps Uber and Lyft, which launched their IPOs earlier this year, are trading around their listing price, performing poorly compared to some of the cryptocurrencies we’ve examined.

Conclusion

Many traders, especially those who are risk averse, may still be slow to enter the crypto markets in 2019. However, from a long term hold perspective, percentage gains realized from crypto portfolios this year would have far exceeded many traditional asset classes and have heavily outperformed supposedly ‘hot’ new IPOs such as Uber and Lyft. However, there’s plenty of stocks out there which have huge potential upside, Beyond Meat for example and particularly cannabis stocks, and it’s still worth cryptocurrency investors diversifying their risk and exploring other traditional asset classes as part of their portfolios.

Article Produced By
Elliot Hill

Elliot Hill

Elliot is a blockchain, fintech and cryptocurrency copywriter from the UK. He's been writing for the DLT space for two years, in which time he's reported on many topics and a wide range of projects. Elliot has a number of blockchain investments and is particularly interested in blockchain for individual monetary sovereignty.

https://blokt.com/news/prominent-twitter-trader-reveals-huge-2019-gains-from-cryptoassets

CV Market Watch: Weekly Crypto Trading Overview June 14-21 2019

CV Market Watch™: Weekly Crypto Trading Overview (June 14-21, 2019)

Bitcoin broke above the $9,000 range and set to reconquer $10,000, as altcoins lagged behind.

                            

Bitcoin (BTC) continued its recovery, avoiding a sell-off this week.

The asset quickly broke above the $9,000 level, and later went on above the $9,700 mark, sparking hopes for a bigger rally. Bitcoin (BTC) traded at $9,786.72 on Friday, once again revving up as the weekend approached. BTC is up more than 17% in the past week, still proving that upward volatility is possible. The share of Tether (USDT) trading receded to around 63% BTC activity. Currently, the supply of USDT is on the increase, to more than 3.57 billion coins. BTC trading volumes were moderately lower, to around $17 billion in 24 hours. In the past week, BTC appreciation took its market capitalization dominance to above 58%, as altcoins lagged or sank lower.

Ethereum (ETH) was one of the big movers this week, following the announcement of Ethereum 2.0 getting a set date for its launch. ETH traded at $289.34, up 8% in a single day, and adding more than 12% to its price in the past week. ETH has received increasing USDT liquidity, and valuations of $300 are within a small distance.

XRP (XRP) hovered around $0.44, up 10% this week, following an announcement that Ripple bought a share in MoneyGram. Still, the asset is relatively stagnant, unable to break above the $0.50 range.

Litecoin (LTC) spent most of last week in consolidation mode at around $135, and took off on Friday, along with BTC, to $138.09. The coin is up just 5% net this week, but promises a more significant rally as the halving of the block reward approaches.

Bitcoin Cash (BCH) inched up to $426.28, boosted by BTC trading.

EOS (EOS) broke out to $7.04, mostly on the BTC move, adding nearly 10% in the past week. The asset remains strong despite Weiss Ratings lowering its grade to B-.

Binance Coin (BNB) continued with new records, reaching $37.72 on Friday. As the exchange increases its influence and volumes, BNB remains a central asset for multiple activities.

Bitcoin SV (BSV) rose to $223.59, up 7.3% this week, as the asset gradually establishes its presence and valuations easily above $200.

Stellar (XLM) hardly moved from its $0.12 tier, as the asset shares the fate of XRP and remains stagnant.

Cardano (ADA) remained at $0.089, despite the news of a testnet launch. The asset fails to attract high-level hype.

TRON (TRX) continued to hover around $0.033, despite the announcement of the update to Odyssey 3.6 version.

Monero (XMR) surprisingly exploded to $108.76, up more than 21% in the past week. The sudden spike in prices was seen as a response to the long-term stagnation and accumulation of coins. Unus Sed Leo (LEO) is the surprising new arrival among top coins. The token, newly minted and native to the Bitfinex exchange, completed its price discovery and was finally listed on CoinMarketCap, promising to become a fixture among leading assets. LEO traded at $1.85, after peaking this week at $2.00.

DASH (DASH) spiked to $164.84, up 7.85 this week, following the trend in anonymous coins.

Cosmos (ATOM) regained the $6.57 level on the back of BTC, gaining a tame 6.7% this week.

IOTA (MIOTA) stagnated at $0.43, as the news of the consensus protocol are failing to spark more active upward bidding.

NEO (NEO) inched up to $13.87, again up 6.7% this week, inching up from its lows.

Ethereum Classic (ETC) rose to $8.71 after the announcement of the Atlantis hard fork receiving a set date in September.

Tezos (XTZ) stagnated at $1.21, as the project left the spotlight and altcoins are generally the worse performers.

NEM (XEM) remained almost without change at $0.086, as Asian markets are also extremely focused on Bitcoin.

The markets gained a dose of optimism this week, possibly sending BTC above $10,000 in the coming days. Instead of an altcoin season, BTC staged an independent rally, leaving altcoins behind. Anonymous and privacy coins are having a field day, moving up from their long-term stagnancy. Neither the author nor the publication assumes any responsibility or liability for any investments, profits, or losses made as a result of this information. Cryptocurrency trading and investing are risky propositions, and market participants are advised to always conduct thorough research.

Article Produced By
Christine Masters

Business writer with a knack for bubbles and market madness. Has tracked it all: the financial crisis of 2008 and the implosion of Lehman Brothers; bank bailouts and peak gold and silver, penny stocks…and now Christine has moved to cryptocurrencies for fresh stories.

https://cryptovest.com/news/cv-market-watch-weekly-crypto-trading-overview-june-14-21-2019/

Binance Coin Price Analysis: BNB Records New ATH Following Binance’s Latest IEO Announcement

Binance Coin Price Analysis: BNB Records New ATH Following Binance’s Latest IEO Announcement    

    

Binance Coin continued its bull run today,

rising by 2.71% to reach a fresh all-time high (ATH) value of $36.91. In the past three months, BNB is up by more than 147%, and the cryptocurrency is up around 500% on the year. Its most recent rally followed the announcement of the latest initial exchange offering (IEO) to be held on Binance Launchpad. The project is called Elrond and the event will take place on July 1. Meanwhile, BNB remains the seventh-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, sitting on a market cap of around $5.1 billion.

Looking at the BNB/USD 1-day chart:

  • Since our previous BNB analysis, BNB/USD has continued to climb above the $34 level. The cryptocurrency surged past the $36.22 resistance level to reach an ATH at $36.42. The coin’s price is now back on its way to the $36.22 resistance level.
  • From above: The nearest level of resistance lies at $37. Above $37, further resistance is found at $38 and $38.53 (where the medium-term 1.618 Fib Extension lies). The next level of strong resistance above $39 is at $40. If the bulls push the price above $40, more resistance is at $42 and $42.66.
  • From below: The nearest level of support lies at $36.22. Beneath this, additional support is found at $35, $34.20, $32.41, $31.20, and $30. If the selling continues beneath $30, further support can be expected at $28, $26.60, and $25.18.
  • The trading volume has remained very high during May and June.
  • The RSI recently bounced from the 50 level, indicating that the bulls remain in control of the market momentum. The RSI has more room to go higher before becoming overbought, which suggests that the bull run can continue.

Looking at the BNB/BTC 1-day chart:

  • Against Bitcoin, BNB has also continued to climb above the 100-day EMA at around 0.003680 BTC. Binance Coin recently reached the 0.004 BTC level where it met resistance.
  • From above: The nearest level of resistance lies at 0.004 BTC. Above this, further resistance is found at 0.0042 BTC, 0.0044 BTC, 0.004615 BTC, and 0.0048 BTC. If the bulls continue north, additional resistance lies at 0.004920 BTC, 0.0050 BTC, and 0.0052 BTC.
  • From below: The nearest level of support now lies at 0.003785 BTC. Beneath this, support is found at 0.003680 BTC, 0.003555 BTC, and 0.003420 BTC. If the selling continues, more support stands at 0.0031880 BTC, 0.0031 BTC, and 0.0030 BTC.
  • The Stochastic RSI recently produced a bullish crossover signal in the oversold territory, indicating that the previous round of selling has run its course. Furthermore, the RSI itself is currently battling the 50 level as the bulls attempt to take control of the market momentum.

Article Produced By
Yaz Sheikh

Yaz is a cryptocurrency technical analyst with over seven years of technical analysis trading experience. As an Economics graduate, he has taken a keen interest in the future potentials of blockchain in the financial industry. Removing crypto from the equation, Yaz loves to watch his favorite football team and keep up-to-date with the latest fights within the UFC.

https://cryptopotato.com/binance-coin-price-analysis-bnb-records-new-ath-following-binance-next-ieo-announcement/

Cryptocurrency: India Deny Existence Of Blanket Ban Bill

Cryptocurrency: India Deny Existence Of Blanket Ban Bill

                                 

If you’ve been keeping up to date with the crypto space over the past few weeks

then you will have heard about India’s ‘proposed’ blanket ban over cryptocurrencies in the nation. This blanket ban would make ownership of Bitcoin and altcoins completely illegal and if found guilty of holding such digital assets, you could be facing up to ten years in prison. However, despite this being common knowledge within the crypto community, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has denied that this ‘proposed’ bill actually exists.

Amongst this, the RBI has responded to a ‘Right to Information’ request which was published on 4th June by a lawyer that works in blockchain-related matters. The Bank claims that they weren’t in communication with governmental bodies throughout the legislative process as well as them not receiving any copy of the bill. Regulation for Bitcoin and blockchain in India hasn’t had an easy ride with threats of bans being interspersed with different government initiatives, as well as a regulatory sandbox from the RBI. It’s worth noting that just because the Indian Bank doesn’t acknowledge this new bill, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it isn’t a real thing. That being said, the high level of participation from the RBI in previous crypto matters.

India vs Cryptocurrency

As previously mentioned, there is a harsh punishment involved for people who defy this bill. It seems that the nation is taking their approach to crypto with an iron fist as offenders of the bill would be subject to ‘non-bailable’ sentences according to ‘The Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill’, sourced by Bloomberg. On top of this, it adds the degree of punishment which would be appropriate to the user’s cryptocurrency portfolio. The harsh nature of the bill goes on as the bill states fines levied by the courts would be three times as much as the profit the individual made from crypto in the first place.

The proposed bill states:

“The penalty imposed on the accused, according to the bill, shall be either thrice the loss caused to the system, or three-fold the gains made by him/her, whichever is higher. If the loss or gain can’t be reasonably determined, the maximum fine that can be imposed may be notified by the government.”

This bill comes as a controversial (and quite hypocritical) time, as the nation is currently in talks to launch its own state-backed cryptocurrency, the digital rupee.

RBI Keeps Clear of Crypto

In looking for more information about the proposed bill, the lawyer Varun Sethi filed an inquiry into the RBI’s involvement in the matter. For those that don’t know, Sethi is an expert in the field of blockchain dealing with several legal matters in the industry. Varun has met with officials stated that the RBI was not in contact with governmental agencies throughout the legislative process and had not received a copy of the bill either. Many of the lawyer’s questions were sent to the Department for Economic Affairs as well as the Ministry of Finance by the Bank.

As reported by CCN:

“The RBI has been at the forefront of much of the current regulation of crypto and blockchain in India. It was through the central bank that institutions which fell under the bank’s regulations were prohibited from processing cryptocurrency purchases in 2018.”

Furthermore, they were also involved in some pro-blockchain regulations when they revealed a regulatory sandbox that would enable the allowance of blockchain related products to be tested, however, virtual currencies are not included in this.

Harsh Outlook

This harsh outlook on cryptocurrencies from India has seen some criticism from industry figures like Tim Draper as well as the CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao. In April last year, the rumours of a blanket ban surfaced. At the time, the American venture capital investor and entrepreneur, Tim Draper said that he thought banning Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies would be

a huge mistake.

“If the local authorities are banning crypto, then companies in the space should move elsewhere. The government needs to realize that it is stifling innovation and should instead be creating an environment where these ideas can be tested and promoted. They have the choice to be trendsetters and attract the world’s best engineers and coders, or lose their best and brightest to other regions. Countries such as India, where billions of rupees are wasted on inefficiencies and needless paperwork, will benefit most from the ease and security of blockchain.”

In response to this Indian bill, Zhao said that it would see a big drive for privacy coins like ZCash and Monero. Why the RBI is denying the existence of the blanket ban bill is unknown. One side says they're trying to cover it up whereas the other suggests there might not be a bill in the first place. Only time will tell to see which side is true.

Article Produced By
Mark Nezvisky

Mark Nezvisky

I'm responsible for filming fresh, daily market, blockchain and crypto news for Crypto Daily's YouTube Channel. We cover a variety topics and coins to suit the taste of different investors, traders and crypto enthusiasts. For many years my background was mainly in Recruiting and Marketing. I also enjoy running a musical YouTube channel in my spare time.

https://cryptodaily.co.uk/2019/06/cryptocurrency-india-deny-existence-of-blanket-ban-bill

3 Reasons why BitMesh’s Removal of XRP Won’t Matter Much

3 Reasons why BitMesh’s Removal of XRP Won’t Matter Much

                              

There are dozens of cryptocurrency exchanges and trading platforms around the world.

Some companies have a better reputation and reach than others, which is only normal in this nascent industry. BitMesh, while not the most popular exchange, will delist various trading pairs. One of them is XRP, which raises a fair few questions.

The Surprising Removal of XRP from BitMesh

In an email sent out to its customers, the BitMesh team explains how several altcoins, tokens, and assets will be removed from the platform over the next few days. While most of these offerings will not cause anyone to lose sleep whatsoever, the removal of XRP is a rather noteworthy development in its own right. It is one of the top markets in this industry, thus one has to wonder what has driven this decision exactly. There are many different reasons which may contribute to such a turn of events. At this time, it is evident XRP is one of the least liquid markets on the Bitmesh trading platform. It is only traded against Bitcoin, which will not exactly get too many people excited right away. This trading pair is also available on virtually all major trading platforms, where volume is not an issue whatsoever.

No Real Impact on Trading Volume

With the low trading volume offered by Bitmesh, it seems this delisting will not cause any major concerns in that regard either. Ripple’s native asset can be traded across roughly 400 trading pairs, which doesn’t even include BitMesh. There are also quite a few other exchanges which don’t node any real trading volume for this asset right now, yet they show no indication of removing this pair anytime soon. It is rather remarkable to see how much trading volume XRP can generate these days. A fair few trading pairs focus on the USDT market or fiat currency pairs, which are a lot more popular than trading the asset against Bitcoin these days. Albeit Bitmesh also provides USDT and USDC trading, it never allowed Ripple’s asset to be a part of that select club, for some unknown reason.

Price Impact Should be Minimal

While it is never good to learn a particular market will be removed from an exchange without much of an explanation, this decision will not disrupt XRP’s overall price trend. The exchange in question is too small to have any notable effect in that regard, although there might be a few panicky Tweets and other social media messages moving forward. For most users, it is best to ignore any panic-spreading attempts or FUD regarding Ripple’s asset. After all, this is a very minor exchange taking a course of action which has seemingly everything to do with liquidity rather than anything else. It is still advised BitMesh users withdraw the to-be-removed assets in the next two weeks, as no further withdrawals will be honored afterward.

Article Produced By
JP Buntinx

JP Buntinx is a FinTech and Bitcoin enthusiast living in Belgium. His passion for finance and technology made him one of the world's leading freelance Bitcoin writers.

 

https://nulltx.com/3-reasons-why-bitmeshs-removal-of-xrp-wont-matter-much/

Coinbase Spotify and eBay Reportedly Among List of Corporate Giants Backing Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency

Coinbase, Spotify and eBay Reportedly Among List of Corporate Giants Backing Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency

  •                   

 Facebook’s upcoming cryptocurrency, aka “GlobalCoin” and “Libra”,

will reportedly be governed by a new consortium of corporations and non-profit organizations. The social media giant established the Libra Association to include over a dozen companies that will act as founding members of Project Libra to launch Facebook’s new stablecoin. GlobalCoin, pegged to multiple currencies, is expected to debut early next year. The Block has published a list of the consortium’s founding members who will reportedly invest $10 million each.

Founding Members of Facebook’s Libra Association

Anchorage, Andreessen Horowitz, BisonTrails, Booking Holdings, Calibra (Facebook subsidiary), Coinbase, Creative Destruction Lab, eBay, Farfetch, Iliad, Kiva, Lyft, Mastercard, MercadoLibre, Mercy Corps, PayPal, PayU, Ribbit Capital, Stripe, Thrive Capital, Uber, Union Square Ventures, Visa, Vodafone, Women’s World Banking, Xapo

Unlike other cryptocurrencies that are trying to spur adoption and build recognition, Facebook’s coin will capitalize on its household name and the ability to eventually leverage its user base of 2.5 billion monthly active users. According to reports about Project Libra’s GlobalCoin, which has been under wraps for months, it’s designed to spawn a global network of crypto transactions including cross-border and domestic payments among friends and family with PayPal-like ease and Facebook-friendly features. The network, if successful, could power a global platform for e-commerce transactions among merchants worldwide. It could also position Facebook to offer more financial services and compete with banks.

Article Produced By
Daily Hodl Staff

https://dailyhodl.com/2019/06/15/coinbase-spotify-and-ebay-reportedly-among-list-of-corporate-giants-backing-facebooks-new-cryptocurrency/

Facebook’s Crypto Division Brings on Uber Visa amp PayPal as Backers as Globalcoin Nears

Facebook’s Crypto Division Brings on Uber, Visa & PayPal as Backers as Globalcoin Nears

                              

Facebook Bags Investments With Uber, Visa, PayPal For Venture

Traditional fintech firms, save for Bitcoin pundit Jack Dorsey’s Square, have been slow to adopt cryptocurrency. While PayPal has dabbled in the arena, purportedly launching a digital token for internal testing last year, firms like Visa, Mastercard, and their ilk have been hesitant to take the plunge. In fact, an executive — the chief executive — from Mastercard called crypto “junk” last year, citing the lack of transparency and their non-conformity to traditional finance. This is quickly changing though, with news that the aforementioned firms are investing in Facebook’s digital asset play. Reported Tuesday first by The Wall Street Journal, three major fintech companies are looking to invest a likely competitor to their own services. This competitor, as aforementioned, is Facebook’s foray into the cryptocurrency industry. The Journal, citing sources familiar as normal, claims that Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, the recently-‘IPOed’ Uber, Stripe, and other big names in finance/tech will be contributing around $10 million to an entity that governs the coin.

This capital will be used to purchase assets meant to back the cryptocurrency, which is most likely going to be a stablecoin tied to a basket of fiat currencies. This $10 million lines up with recent reports that revealed Facebook will be charging that eight-figure sum to those looking to run nodes for the cryptocurrency. This recent report, which comes after rumors indicated Facebook has been in discussion with giants like Visa, was dropped just ahead of the supposed June 18th release date of the whitepaper of “Globalcoin”, the name of the cryptocurrency. As Blockonomi has covered extensively, Globalcoin will likely be a private cryptocurrency that allows for low-cost, rapid, and borderless value transfer between Facebook’s billions of clients.

Globalcoin to Boost Crypto, Aid Bitcoin Adoption

Anyhow, regardless of Globalcoin’s exact nature, some have ventured that its launch will be the largest catalyst for Bitcoin adoption — and thus price — in this industry’s history. Blockchain Capital’s Spencer Bogart broke down his thoughts on the matter in an extensive Twitter thread. Put short and sweet, the stablecoin is “among the most bullish external tailwinds for Bitcoin in 2019/2020”. Bogart adds that the only bigger catalyst for BTC growth will be quantitative easing (an inflationary fiscal policy), which he calls a “reinvigorated push among central banks for easy-money globally”. Explaining the importance of Facebook’s Globalcoin, Bogart explains that the corporate cryptocurrency “eases the biggest friction in acquiring digital assets”, in that it makes getting fiat into this ecosystem extremely easily. Once fiat is allocated towards Globalcoin, the investor assumes that value can flow easily between the Facebook ecosystem and something like, let’s say, Bitcoin or Ethereum.

He writes:

“Facebook making a concerted push for digital asset adoption and creating a circular economy is great because it solves that friction point. Once people are holding/earning a digital asset, it’s relatively trivial to go from, for example, USDC to BTC.”

Also important is that Globalcoin will catalyze growth in cryptocurrency infrastructure, pushing companies to build everything from custody and wallet services to compliance measures and exchanges. In fact, the investor postulated that once Globalcoin hits the mainstream, “large financial institutions” will be incentivized to join in on the bandwagon.

Not Flawless

Many still see issues with Globalcoin, however. Most notably, issues with privacy and governmental oversight. Just the other day, Mark Zuckerberg was thrown into yet another scandal involving the privacy of his creation’s users. Emails published by the Journal on Wednesday revealed that Zuckerberg has been involved in “potentially problematic privacy practices”. More specifically, the Silicon Valley all-star mentioned issues with privacy in emails, evidently accentuating that he has been following these situations closely. The thing is, for the longest, Facebook has been slow to act in terms of stemming privacy issues. And some fear that this seemingly negligence may continue with Globalcoin.

Article Produced By
Nick Chong

Nick has been enamored with cryptocurrencies since finding out about them in 2013. He now reports on crypto- and blockchain-related news for a number of leading outlets.

https://blockonomi.com/facebook-crypto-uber-visa-paypal/