Author: Gerald Fenech

Crypto market daily report – November 16, 2018

The cryptocurrency markets continued on their inexorable freefall over the past 24 hours with almost all major currencies showing a considerable decline across the board. BTC settled at around $5,600, a new yearly low with turnover almost tripling to $265 million on Binance. Ethereum was also down considerably and after dipping to the $170 mark, rose slightly to the $180 level. The second largest cryptocurrency by market cap has been rapidly losing volume and price and is now more than 90% off its all time high.

Ripple was also down to the $0.45 level but eventually recovered slightly to the $0.47 mark, whilst Bitcoin Cash has now forked with the price of BCHSV at $123 or a 38% jump and the price of BCH ABC at $300 – remaining relatively unchanged after the fork. It still remains to be seen what is going to happen to these prices in the immediate future. It seems that customers are also being short-changed on the Bitcoin.com wallet with the levels of the price fluctuating wildly but mostly down to well below the current total price of both forks.

Litecoin was down by around 1% to the $43.41 level, whilst NEO was also down to the 12.80 level—a decrease of 2.85%. Stellar was the only currency which was in positive territory where it rose by 2% to the $0.24 level. Ethereum Classic was also down by a similar 2% to the $7.60 level, whilst TRX remained relatively stable at the $0.019 level. Other smaller market caps retreated slightly with ADA dropping by 2% to the $0.0674 mark and IOTA down to the $0.41 mark. Binance Coin also suffered a considerable decrease to the $0.41 mark or around 4%, whilst ICX and NULS were down by 3 and 5% respectively. ONT also suffered a 3% decline to the $1.39 level, whilst VET was down to the 0.0078 mark or a 3% decline.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Crypto market daily report – November 15, 2018

The cryptocurrency markets experienced a massive crash on Wednesday afternoon with the rout continuing well into the night and on Thursday morning. BTC plummeted by over 10% to the $5,700 level—a new low for 2018 as a huge selloff drove the largest currency by market cap into freefall.

Ethereum also experienced a similar savage drop, which was even more pronounced after the currency fell to below the $180 level on very high turnover. It eventually recovered slightly to the $183 level at press time on Thursday. Bitcoin BCH also dropped heavily by as much as 15% to settle at the $460 level pre-protocol upgrade, although there could be further instability in the run up to the much anticipated event. Ripple was also down heavily by as much as 10% to the $0.47 mark as the sell off affected practically all major currencies.

EOS and Stellar also saw considerable drops of 12 and 9% respectively, with the former’s price settling at around the $4.66 level, whilst the latter gave up all the gains of the past week to trade at the $0.24 mark. Litecoin slumped by as much as 13% to the $44 mark—a level not seen since it first started to rise over a year ago. NEO continued to crash and reached a yearly low of $13, which was almost 90% off its all time high of $190 reached in January.

Other currencies with smaller market caps also saw massive drops with Ethereum Classic falling a massive 17% to the $7.85 level, a price not seen for over two years. Cardano was also down by a similarly huge 15% to the $0.063 mark, whilst IOTA also lost heavily and was down by 16% to the $0.43 mark, also a record low this year. Currencies such as ICX, QTUM, VET and NULS lost similarly badly with drops ranging from 12 to 16%, whilst BNB suffered a less drastic 10% drop to the $8.42 level.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Regulators brings down more ICOs in Colorado

State regulators in Colorado got tough with for more initial coin offerings (ICOs), putting a cease and desist order on them last week. This brings the total number of ICOs rebuked by the state to a dozen.

On its website, the state’s Division of Securities identified the four ICOs as Bitcoin Investments, Ltd., PInkDate, Prisma, and Clear Shop Vision Ltd. In an interview with CoinDesk, Colorado Securities Commissioner Gerald Rome said the crackdown is part of the agency’s effort “to ensure that the state’s securities market and the investors that operate within it are protected from unscrupulous actors that are taking advantage of the enthusiasm surrounding this field to perpetrate fraud and in some cases outright theft.”

He noted that the enforcement action is meant to advance Colorado as an “innovative leader” in the cryptocurrency space. Though the state’s ICO Task Force has been active since May, the cease-and-desist orders come several days after Colorado elected Jared Polis, a member of the Congressional Blockchain Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives, as its new governor.

Aside from Colorado, other U.S. states are also taking action against potentially fraudulent token sales. Last week, Texas issued emergency cease and desist orders to crypto mining firms based in Australia and Canada. In October, the North Dakota Securities Department served a similar order to three firms that were discovered to be involved in promoting fraudulent securities and illegal business practices related to ICOs in the state.

A coalition of North American securities regulators, including the Colorado Division of Securities, is conducting more than 200 investigations as part of its “Operation Cryptosweep,” whose goal is to stifle cryptocurrency scams in the region.

Bob Webster of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), who plays a coordinating role in Operation Cryptosweep, said Colorado is among the more active jurisdictions in the U.S., along with Texas, North Dakota and Massachusetts.

“You’re starting to see now the results of those investigations,” according to Webster.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Crypto market daily report – November 12, 2018

The cryptocurrency markets continued to look rather subdued on Monday morning with most of the major currencies experiencing a downward trend. However, coins such as Stellar, Cardano and ZCash were in positive territory, undoubtedly due to the fact that they would soon be listed on Coinbase.

BTC recovered from its recent slump to trade at around the $6,450 level at press time on Monday, whilst Bitcoin Cash traded at around the $510 level on Monday at press time. This represents a 20% decline over the price last week, although things could change very soon after the protocol upgrade on November 15.

Ethereum also lost some ground from last week, although the changes were minimal as the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap traded at around $212 at press time on Monday. Ripple regained the $0.50 mark with a slight uptick over Sunday, after it had dropped to the $0.47 level over the weekend on considerably low turnover. Litecoin was also down to around $50, a 5% drop from last week, whilst EOS continued losing ground to the $5.40 level although it appeared to be stemming its losses to around that level.

Currencies with smaller market caps also saw some decreases although as already stated above, there were some exceptions. Stellar was up 6% to the $0.28 level, whilst Cardano went up to the $0.077 level before dropping back to the $0.075 mark on low turnover. Other currencies lost ground including NEO which was down to the $15.90 mark—a decrease of 1%–whilst Tron experienced a 3% drop to the $0.022 mark. Ethereum Classic was also down to the $9.25 level, whilst IOTA was up by 2% to the $0.50 mark. ZCash was up to the $122 level whilst BNB traded down by a similar amount to the $9.47 mark.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Crypto market daily report – November 9, 2018

The markets were in a considerably duller mood over the past 24 hours as practically all major currencies gave up some of the gains achieved over the past week. BTC dropped below the $6,500 mark on Binance, although it seemed to be holding well on relatively low turnover. Bitcoin Cash also retreated slightly by about 2% to the $590 mark, remaining in second place as regards turnover.

Ripple continued declining by about 1% to the $0.51 mark, once again giving away most of its gains over the past week. It seems that rumours regarding a participation with SWIFT were just those—rumours. Ethereum also gave away some of its gains although the decline was relatively insignificant at just around 0.5%. Litecoin continued declining to the $53 level—another 2% drop.

The only currency which saw some positive movement was Stellar—it jumped around 6% to the $0.27 mark, whilst Cardano held on to the $0.077 level. NEO remained static at around $16.50, whilst Ethereum Classic also showed a small increase of around 1% to the $9.64 mark. EOS remained stuck at around the $5.56 level, whilst TRON was down by 1% to the $0.023 level.

Other larger currencies by market capitalization also saw slight declines. Dash was hovering around the $170 level on the back of the recent announcement that it will be moving forward on a Venezuela project where cryptocurrency can become available via SMS. ZCash was also static at around the $130 level, although it receded by far less than other currencies.

Coins with smaller market caps were either static or in decline. Binance Coin was down by around 1% to the $9.71 level, whilst IOTA also declined by a similar amount to below the $0.50 mark. ONT and VET remained static, whilst QTUM and NULS showed very small declines of around 1% with the rest of the market quite static.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Pay for airport taxi rides in Tokyo with Bitcoin BCH

One of Japan’s 16 regulated cryptocurrency exchange has teamed up with Hinomaru Limousine, allowing the airport taxi service to start accepting payments in Bitcoin Cash (BCH), as well as in other cryptos.

On Tuesday, a partnership was announced between between Airport Car Service by Hinomaru and Bitpoint to trial cryptocurrency payments for the company’s airport taxi service on November 6-9 period. According to the exchange, the partnership is part of its effort to “strengthen the service so that virtual currency will become more popular as ‘using, sending, investing’ means.”

Pay for airport taxi rides in Tokyo with Bitcoin BCH

Established in 1981, Hinomaru operates a fleet of 362 limos and 161 taxis. Crypto payments are accepted for the service between Tokyo’s 23 wards and the city’s two major airports Haneda and Narita, according to Bitpoint’s announcement. The fares range from JPY19,020 ($168) to JPY37,020 for Narita, and JPY8,300  ($73) to JPY15,600 ($137) for Haneda. If this operation proves to be successful, the crypto payment support is expected to include regular taxi rides.

Hinomaru offers two types of vehicles: high-grade type (Tesla Model S) for four passengers and minivan type (Toyota Alphard) for four to six passengers. Passengers must have a Bitpoint account and use the Bitpoint wallet app for either Android or iOS on their smartphone, to be able to pay with cryptocurrency. Aside from Bitcoin BCH, the exchange wallet also supports payments in BTC and ETH.

The announcement comes several days after Bitpoint entered a business alliance with Carchs Holdings Co. Ltd. to also enable cryptocurrency payments at its used car dealerships.

Carchs Holdings was established in 1989 and currently operates 48 dealerships throughout Japan. Carchs has 17 locations are in Kanto, 10 are in Kansai and in the Hokuriku and Chubu areas, eight are in in the Hokkaido and Tohoku area, and three are in the Chugoku, Shikoku and Kyushu region.

Two Carchs dealerships in Kansai area and in the Hokkaido/Tohoku area have started accepting crypto payments last November 1 with Bitpoint’s help. The used car dealership will continue to accept cryptos until January 9, 2019.

Carchs customers, just like with Hinomaru Limousine, need to have a Bitpoint account and use the Bitpoint wallet app to pay with cryptocurrency.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Crypto market daily report – November 7, 2018

The cryptocurrency markets continued to post slight gains on Wednesday morning, with Bitcoin Cash still on an impressive run—surpassing the $600 level on Tuesday evening and settling at around $620 at press time on Wednesday.

BTC, meanwhile, reached the $6,550 mark and was pushing towards the $6,600 level. Ripple gave back some of its gains over the past 48 hours and was down by around 2% at press time to the $0.54 level, although it was still the second highest traded currency on Binance. Ethereum plodded steadily upwards reaching the $220 level at press time on Wednesday, whilst EOS continued gaining traction and was up by a further 2% to the $5.70 mark although turnover remains something of a concern here.

Other top 10 currencies had mixed fortunes with Litecoin only rising by around 2%, whilst Stellar shot up by 8% to the $0.27 mark—the highest level it has been for some time now. NEO continued to perform sluggishly and was only at around $17 at press time on Wednesday—a 2% increase—whilst Cardano held on the $0.08 level before dropping briefly below that on Tuesday. TRON remained relatively static at the $0.024 mark, whilst Ethereum Classic hovered around the $9.70 level at press time on Wednesday.

Currencies with smaller market caps also remained relatively stable over the Tuesday-Wednesday period, with IOTA hovering around the $0.51 level or a 2% increase. ICX regained the $0.66 mark on the back of a 3% rise, whilst VET and QTUM performed better with 5 and 6% rises respectively. Binance Coin was flat at the $9.90 level or a 2% increase, whilst NULS posted a 4% increase to the $1.13 level.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Switzerland clamps down on banks trading in crypto: report

The situation in Switzerland got a whole lot more difficult for cryptocurrency and banking in general, as the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) is getting tough on those banks who want to trade in crypto assets.

On Monday, Swissinfo.ch  reported that the financial regulator has described its stance on how financial institutions should weigh crypto assets.

In a letter to EXPERTsuisse, a copy of which was obtained by the Swiss news outlet, FINMA noted that banks and securities dealers should assign “a flat risk weight of 800% to cover market and credit risks” against crypto assets. This means that with the current BTC price of $6,000, institutions would have to value the coin at no less than $48,000 as a buffer level. EXPERTsuisse is a group representing Swiss trustees and accountants.

The guidance is on the high end of the range and on the level of hedge funds, according to the report, meaning FINMA considers crypto assets to be volatile.

Swissinfo.ch reported that FINMA has also set the crypto-trading cap at 4% of a bank’s total capital, noting that banks must report to the authority if they reach that upper limit.

While the letter offers insight into the regulator’s stance and outreach on this issue, it hasn’t yet released official rules for how Swiss banks should deal with cryptocurrencies under the Basel III international banking regulations, according to the report. The financial regulator has already issued an official guidance for initial coin offerings (ICOs) in February, after it received a number of enquiries on the matter.

At the time, FINMA said the applicability of regulation to cryptos would be determined on a case-by-case basis—a stance that is similar to the one taken by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in July.

According to FINMA, “asset tokens” fall under securities, meaning there are securities and civil law requirements for trading such tokens. It noted, “FINMA regards asset tokens as securities, which means that there are securities law requirements for trading in such tokens, as well as civil law requirements under the Swiss Code of Obligations.”

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Crypto market daily report – November 6, 2018

The cryptocurrency markets held on to Monday’s strong gains with the top performers, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Ripple (XRP) maintaining their momentum.

Bitcoin BCH remained around the $560 level after having gained an astonishing 20% over the past two days and was well supported with strong turnover. Ripple, meanwhile, also shot up by 17% to touch the $0.55 mark. This was probably due to the news on the XRapid system which continues to be accepted by several major banks.

BTC held on to the $6,500 mark after having dropped briefly below the $6,400 mark on Monday, although turnover remained weak with XRP actually leapfrogging it on Binance. ETH posted a steady increase of around 4% to the $215 level and appeared poised to continue consolidating at this level, although again turnover remained a worrying factor. ETH’s poor performance of late means that XRP has now overtaken as the second largest coin by market cap.

Other coins from the Top 10 registered significant increases. Stellar and Cardano were both up by about 6% to $0.26 and $0.08 respectively, whilst NEO registered a more modest 3% increase to the $17 mark. LTC regained the $55 level on the back of a 4% increase whilst ETC was up by around 3% to the $9.70 mark. EOS was also up by around 4% to the $5.70 level. BNB registered a relatively insignificant 1% increase to trade at the $9.82 level at press time.

Smaller market cap coins had a more modest performance with IOTA and ONT registering relatively minor 2% increases. VET had a similar 2% increase to the $0.010 level, whilst ICX was the only coin that registered a decrease although this was less than 1%. QTUM was up by 2%, whilst PAX remained static.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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SEC enforcement report highlights ICO misconduct in United States

Although there isn’t a clear framework regarding regulation for cryptocurrencies in the United States, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has placed a considerable emphasis on the space throughout 2018, particularly on initial coin offerings (ICOs). This was revealed in the SEC’s Division of Enforcement annual report—the second of its kind in which the regulator focused on its ability to crack down on fraud in the financial system as well as protect investors.

This year, ICOs were an important theme throughout the document with almost 30 mentions in the whole document. There was also a complete section dedicated to the agency’s activity in identifying misconduct that was tied to digital assets as well as token crowdsales.

According to the SEC, the agency has meticulously selected the projects they pursued this year, which saw an “explosion” of ICOs, in a bid to send the most effective message to issuers not just in the U.S., but also internationally where they market to U.S. investors. SEC noted that fundraising has been on the decline, with the tally for September failing to surpass $300 million versus $3 billion in January 2018.

“We believe our approach to enforcement in this space has been thoughtful and consistent. Importantly, it has provided a template for authorities in other countries, where fraud and misconduct targeting U.S. investors often have been based,” the report noted.

The SEC also highlighted its enforcement actions for conducts such as registration violations and unregistered broker-dealer activity, as well as “instances in which the purported use of blockchain-related technology is merely a veneer for outright fraud.”

According to the securities regulator, “In FY 2018, the Commission brought 20 stand alone cases, including those cases involving ICOs and digital assets,” noting that many of the cases involved fraud allegations, although the Division has also “pursued enforcement actions to ensure compliance with the registration requirements of the federal securities law.”

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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