Calm Down and Enjoy the Ride

It’s clear by now that the number one roadblock to crypto adoption is education. Just like it was in the early days of the internet, it’s not so simple for the average person to tap into the advantages of crypto assets, nor are the advantages even clear to everyone at this point.

I remember well the great debate about the usefulness of the internet that raged throughout the 90s. It wasn’t really until the invention of the smartphone, the pocket version of the internet, that everyone truly realized the power of the tool we’ve created.

For my new year’s resolution in 2019, I’ve decided to commit to creating more educational content for crypto beginners and to raise the level of awareness about the emerging asset class.

In the past few days, we’ve seen exceptional examples of this from Time Magazine, which put out an excellent article stressing the benefits of decentralized money and from Tony Robbins, AKA America’s Life Coach, who put this out for his three million followers.

@MatiGreenspan

eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

Calm Down and Enjoy the Ride

Safe Haven Trading

Bakkt to Good News & Bad

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of January 2nd. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

The stock markets are not off to a great start this year. Some sour manufacturing data in China was released this morning and stocks in Asia and Europe are taking a hit.

Still, the new year hangover hasn’t yet completely worn off. It won’t be until Monday that markets really return to full strength. The New York session may prove exciting, though. As we saw last week, low volume trading can often turn volatile, especially as we head into the 12th day of a partial government shutdown.

President Trump’s all caps new years tweet also carried what some have interpreted as a hidden message for the financial markets.

On the Safe Side

The US President’s reassurances have done very little for investors this morning though, who do seem to be erring on the side of caution.

Gold continues to climb, both on the current uncertainty of global politics and the weaker US Dollar. We’re now testing the psychological level of $1,300 per ounce. This level probably won’t be very easy to breach, especially coming off the strong run we’ve seen over the last month.

Crude oil is also testing a boundary at the moment but on the downside. It’s becoming clear to all now that OPEC simply does not enjoy the same level of influence over the price that they used to. This new free market has a lot more competition, which is spurring on more production and more supply.

The level of $45 a barrel is being watched very closely.

Building up Crypto

Now that it seems the US is unlikely to approve any bitcoin backed ETF any time soon, the number one event on the watchlist of many cryptotraders is the launch of Bakkt.

For those of you who are not familiar, Bakkt is a new crypto service that was started by the owners of the New York Stock Exchange, which plans to offer a crypto holding service and debit card that it will make it very easy for everyday customers to store and spend bitcoin.

Over the weekend, Bakkt announced an extremely successful funding round of $182.5 million that has come from various Wall Street institutions and should ensure a smooth launch of the new service.

However, the launch of their platform was supposed to be on December 12th but was later delayed to January 24th. Possibly due to the US government shutdown, it seems that the launch has again been delayed, this time without a confirmed launch date.

We know that it’s going to happen and that it’s very likely to be a great step forward for crypto adoption but it seems we’ll need to continue being patient while they get set up.

Before I let you go for today, I did want to ask you to take part in a short survey. It’s only one question and shouldn’t take you more than a minute to vote, comment and share.

Please visit this link now: https://etoro.tw/ CryptoPoll

I’ll be sure to post our findings in the daily market update early next week and hopefully get a better understanding of the crypto industry.


This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.

Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.

The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.

eToro is a multi-asset platform which offers both investing in stocks and cryptocurrencies, as well as trading CFD assets. 

Please note that CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 65% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework. 

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Honeyminer Brings User-Friendly Crypto Mining to the Masses [Interview]

Setting up a cryptocurrency miner can be an intimidating (and expensive) process. Luckily, one company has successfully brought mining to the masses. 


Honeyminer is an easy-to-use piece of software that lets anyone with a computer mine cryptocurrencies and earn bitcoin on their home computer. It makes it easy for anyone to learn to mine, helping introduce new people to crypto and give everyone equal access to the best mining technology.

Bitcoinist recently sat down with Honeyminer’s Coinyeezy and Crypto Randy Marsh to discuss the user-friendly platform, as well as their take on the future of cryptocurrency.

Bitcoinist: How and where did you originally come up with the idea for Honeyminer?

Honeyminer: The idea had been thrown around the Honeyminer HQ for a while — many of us were running our own mining rigs, but spent a lot of time compiling code, poking at settings to make it work, and trying to figure out what was best to mine on any given day. We realized there was a big need for a better User Experience when it came to mining cryptocurrency. So we went out and built it.

Bitcoinist: Right now, Honeyminer converts all mined cryptocurrencies into Bitcoin. Why?

Honeyminer: We believe Bitcoin is the most-valued cryptocurrency across the world, and for many folks, the best place to start. We are currently developing the ability to “speculatively mine” any of the dozens of currencies we are compatible with – so if you believe in a particular project, you can support it and accumulate its currency. We want to give everyone the features they need with the best experience possible.

Bitcoinist: Is Honeyminer just for home-users?

Honeyminer: We are building Honeyminer (and soon, Honeyminer Pro) to be the best mining application, whether you run an old laptop at home or hundreds of rigs in a data center. We want everyone to have the benefits and flexibility of owning and operating their own mining rig with all the security, safety, and profitability of Honeyminer.

Bitcoinist: What security measures are in place to protect people who don’t want to find malware on their home PC and might be afraid of downloading new applications?

Honeyminer: All Honeyminer applications are signed with a hardware key from DigiCert. All communications between the app and Honeyminer servers is encrypted. Every line of code is audited and compiled by our in-house security experts in the United States (based in New Jersey). We’re always looking for ways to build and maintain the trust of our community. We encourage withdrawals from our platform and any/all diligence. Updates can be found at twitter.com/gethoneyminer.

Bitcoinist: Right now, Honeyminer is only available for Windows. When can we expect a version for Apple computers?

Honeyminer: Mac is coming. Linux too! We are working hard to get this stuff live in 2018. Join our Telegram community chat for the most up to date news: t.me/honeyminer.

Bitcoinist: Some common laptop graphics cards, such as the NVIDIA GeForce 980M, aren’t optimized to operate effectively with Honeyminer. This is likely due to the fact that Honeyminer is still in beta. When do you anticipate leaving the beta stage? 

Honeyminer: Honeyminer is still in Beta — we’ve done our best to support many common video cards (over 1000 different models to date). We are continuing to add support for additional video cards, please check back every week to see if your card has become compatible.

Bitcoinist: Honeyminer users level up like it’s a video game, and receive bonuses at each new level. How are these bonuses calculated?

Honeyminer: The calculation of bonuses is based on how long you keep the app running, we will do more to reward our users in the future too.

Bitcoinist: What are your opinions on the current state of the cryptocurrency market?

Honeyminer: We think cryptocurrency is going to play a large roll in the future. Our official stance is bullish.

Bitcoinist: Where do you see the cryptocurrency market and/or the blockchain industry in the next 5 years?

Honeyminer: We see a lot of experimentation, failure, and evolution. We see a new internet built on transparency and security. We see a new international currency. We see the distribution of new opportunity, work, wealth, and power worldwide. Things are moving in the right direction, we just want to help further that movement with Honeyminer.

Bitcoinist: Finally, what excites you the most about Honeyminer?

Honeyminer: We are most excited about making a difference in developing countries. Roughly 20 percent of our users come from areas where there is either limited access to Bitcoin, no access to banks, or rampant hyperinflation. For us, if we can help people around the world discover crypto (and maybe earn their first bitcoin), that’s something we believe is really exciting and worthwhile.

To learn more about Honeyminer or to get started yourself, check out the official website: https://honeyminer.com/

You can also download the app using the interviewer’s referral link: https://honeyminer.com/referred/593hs

What do you think about Honeyminer? Be sure to let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shuterstock, Honeyminer.

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Commonwealth Bank Boasting Blockchain-Enabled Global Trade Platform

In-house blockchain technology solutions continued to permeate supply chains as Australia’s Commonwealth Banks has successfully conducted a high-profile shipping experiment.


‘Agile, Efficient and Transparent’

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank has successfully shipped and tracked seventeen tonnes of almonds in a blockchain-based collaboration with five domestic and international supply chain leaders. The platform used purportedly utilizes distributed ledger technology, smart contracts, and the internet of things (IoT).

Stated Chris Scougall, Managing Director of Industrials and Logistics in Client Coverage, CBA:

Our blockchain-enabled global trade platform experiment brought to life the idea of a modern global supply chain that is agile, efficient and transparent. We believe that blockchain can help our partners reduce the burden of administration on their businesses and enable them to deliver best-in-class services to their customers.

CBA’s supply chain partners included Olam Orchards Australia Pty Ltd, Pacific National, Port of Melbourne, Patrick Terminals, and OOCL Limited. Additionally, hardware and software support came from LX Group.

Alex Toone, CBA Managing Director of Global Commodities and Trade, stated:

By bringing together partners from across the end to end supply chain and developing a new platform underpinned by emerging technology, blockchain and IoT, we were able to prove a concept to modernise global trade.

The almonds were shipped from Victoria, Australia to Hamburg, Germany. The “operations, documentation and finance” portions of the shipment all took place on a platform which makes use of a purpose-built blockchain.

Specifically, partners were able to track not only the shipment’s location but the temperature and humidity inside the container. Documentation, meanwhile, was streamlined via the blockchain technology used.

Melissa Poon, General Manager for Trade and Development at the Port of Melbourne, stated:

Emerging blockchain technology creates the potential for multi-beneficial productivity gains to Australia’s supply-chain. Through understanding volume loads and shipments coming down the supply chain, we are able to prepare strategies to meet the trade demands of the future. We are excited to be involved in such a ground-breaking project.

Earlier this year, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) came under fire after an investigation accused it of helping the Italian mafia launder money.

What do you think about major international banks utilizing in-house blockchain-enabled solutions? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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88% of Cryptocurrency Exchanges Fear Major Market Crash, Want Regulation

Market Collapse

88 percent of cryptocurrency exchanges want industry regulation, according to a survey from payment company Mistertango. 


‘The Industry is Crying Out for Regulation’

The desire for regulation apparently stems from a fear that the immature market may experience a major market crash and substantial devaluation of assets worse than what has already been seen in the first half of 2018.

However, respondents also noted that care must be taken when regulating the market, as to not over-regulate and hamstring the cryptocurrency market.

According to a press release, 24 cryptocurrency exchanges from Europe, Asia, South America, and Oceania were surveyed — all of which have a total daily trading volume over $100 million USD. The key findings are, as quoted:

  • 88% of crypto exchanges want regulation
  • 17% of crypto exchanges believe overly strict regulation is the biggest threat to the cryptocurrency
  • 30% say the biggest threat to the market is a significant crypto crash
  • 40% say reducing barriers to funding crypto activity by banks will improve acceptance
  • 55% say crypto users should be subject to Know Your Customer & Anti-Money Laundering checks like those using traditional financial services

Interpreting the results, Gabrielius Bilkštys, Business Manager at Mistertango, stated:

The industry is crying out for regulation and the response from partners has shown this. Uncertainty is the biggest fear, and regulation is critical to provide the stability we need. Unfortunately, there is no regulatory consensus – worldwide or otherwise. For cryptocurrencies to move towards the scale and ubiquity possessed by fiat currency, it needs cohesive, considered and comprehensive regulation. Thus, regulation will be a catalyst, not an inhibitor to the crypto market’s development.

Oleksandr Lutskevych, CEO of exchange CEX.IO, likewise noted:

Until now, the industry has not had its say on regulation. It has been widely supposed that crypto companies want to avoid a regulated environment, but this is far from the truth. The industry is all too aware that regulation will lead to the maturity of the market and ensure businesses remain free from suspicion of involvement with illegitimate uses of cryptocurrency.

It has so far been a rough year for Bitcoin 00 and the cryptocurrency market, with all eyes currently focused on pending SEC decisions regarding Bitcoin ETF applications.

What do you think about the current regulatory environment? Do you think a cryptocurrency collapse is on the horizon if regulators do not act properly? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Bitcoin Can Buy Citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda

Individuals may now purchase citizenship in Antigua and Barbuda with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. 


Buying Citizenship in Bitcoin

The independent Commonwealth country comprising its two namesake islands has officially amended its Citizenship by Investment Programme Act. It now accepts payment in bitcoin 00 and other cryptocurrencies.

As reported by Antigua News Room, the resolution was passed in the Lower House on July 22 “without debate.”

Citizenship through the Act may also be purchased in Euros and other fiat currencies. Announced the country’s finance minister:

So not only are we providing the capacity for payment in Euros, but we are also proving for payments using bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Antigua

‘Moving Money is Important’

The prime minister stated that the amendment to the Act was important because “moving money is important and if you cannot move money you cannot receive it.” He continued:

So it is quintessential that we have a payment mechanism that could facilitate payments in cryptocurrencies.

The decision to allow cryptocurrency payments for citizenship purchases has also been driven by market demand. The prime minister told the parliament:

And the truth is too, it expands your market because we have a number of cryptocurrency investors who may be quite willing to take up our citizenship but would only pay in cryptocurrencies.

If you do not accept the cryptocurrency then you would be literally locked out of that market.

Nevertheless, the prime minister realizes that cryptocurrencies are far from stable in their nascent stage, and thus clarified that the country has “to be careful.” To combat the notorious volatility present in the cryptocurrency market, payments will be converted into US dollars on a daily basis “to ensure that we don’t have any exposure in cryptocurrencies.”

What do you think about Antigua and Barbuda’s new amendment to the Citizenship by Investment Programme Act? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Pixabay.

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Research: UK Crypto Investors’ Lack of Knowledge is ‘Very Concerning’

Recent research from IW Capital found that 38 percent of the British population do not “understand” cryptocurrency. Furthermore, a mere 5 percent of those cryptocurrency investors polled have actually turned a profit — a fact the investment house’s CEO finds “very concerning.”


A Fundamental Lack of Information or Knowledge

British investors do not understand cryptocurrency, according to recent research from IW Capital. The Mayfair-based SME investment house shared the research with Express.co.uk.

The report surmises that the vast majority of the UK investing community finds investing in cryptocurrency to be a worse decision than investing in traditional markets.

The investment house polled 2,0007 respondents, 38 percent of which said they do not understand cryptocurrency. Additionally, one-third of respondents are under the impression that the supposed bitcoin bubble will soon burst, while a mere 7 percent believe cryptocurrency investments are better those made through traditional channels.

According to the research, only 5 percent of cryptocurrency investors have turned a profit — a statistic likely skewed by the fact that more than 2.5 million Brits have “casually invested in cryptocurrency without fully understanding the investment.” (Which is the fastest way to lose money, especially in a bear market.)

Failure to Seek Financial Advice

Indeed, it is the fundamental lack of knowledge which is largely responsible for the aforementioned results. According to IW Capital:

The data reveals that, fundamentally, Brits do not have enough information or knowledge on the topic of cryptocurrency. In fact, many have no knowledge about the subject whatsoever.

Losses have also been compounded by failing to take proper investment precautions, such as consulting a financial advisor. The investment house also noted:

Despite a widespread dearth of knowledge surrounding this particular asset class, disconcertingly, 1 in 20 Brits – nearly 3 million – have invested in cryptocurrency without fully understanding it, with only 5 percent having taken advice from a financial adviser when investing in cryptocurrencies.

Only 5 percent of those who have invested in cryptocurrency have made financial gains. 11.5 million have failed to make a financial gain when investing in a cryptocurrency.

London School of Economics to Offer Online Cryptocurrency Course

‘Very Concerning’

IW Capital CEO Luke Davis also told Express.co.uk that the results of the research are “very concerning,” explaining:

It is shocking, but not surprising, to see so much confusion around the topic of cryptocurrency. I do not believe this is a reflection of UK investors’ risk profile, as a positive appetite for alternative finance remains, but to see that investments have been made without proper financial advice and a lack of facts and education is very concerning.

This news might not come as much of a surprise, however, as the number of first-time investors into the cryptocurrency space during the holiday season’s ‘bubble phase’ has been well-documented. Many of those who jumped aboard the bitcoin bandwagon in December have since gotten rekt and shaken out of the market.

The results are also further proof that one should always do his or her own research and due diligence before investing in cryptocurrency, and should never invest more than he or she can afford to lose.

What do you think of IW Capital’s research and results? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bitcoinist archives.

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Comino Brings Plug-and-Play Simplicity to Cryptocurrency Mining [Interview]

As interest in cryptocurrencies continues to grow, so too does interest in cryptocurrency mining. Unfortunately, there can be a significant learning curve involved. Comino aims to change that with their line of completely pre-assembled devices that work with plug-and-play simplicity. Bitcoinist recently sat down with Comino co-founder and CEO Evgeny Vlasov to learn more about these game-changing devices. 


Bitcoinist: First and foremost, what sets your miners apart from the competition?

EV: First of all, we assemble the complete product and offer it as a plug and play device. No one on this market does complete devices with GPU cards inside. A couple of our competitors try to produce such devices, but they are really noisy and dusty. They can’t realistically be placed in a room at home. But our miners are absolutely adapted for home use. For example, it can be placed near your bed and it will be working noiselessly and dust-free. In the winter, it can be used as a heater as well.

Our products are completely plug-and-play — you just push one button and everything works: it mines cryptocurrency to your account. Our company creates everything for your wallets and infrastructure. Even if you know next to nothing about cryptocurrencies, everything will be working.

Our main goal is to produce devices with high-quality components. So we produce and assemble the devices, we develop software for these devices, and, of course, we provide a one-year warranty. In this market of miners with GPU cards, no one else provides such a warranty.

Comino mining devices

Bitcoinist: Right now, your miners specialize in mining Ethereum and ZCash — and only Ethereum and ZCash. Why is that, and do you have plans to release miners for other cryptocurrencies in the future?

EV: We made the decision to implement Ethereum and ZCash because these cryptocurrencies are the easiest and most profitable coins to mine with GPU cards. If you would like to get another cryptocurrency, you can just mine Ethereum and then exchange it into another currency.  Nowadays there are many other coins, but they are not profitable enough, so there is no reason to implement them.

In the future, however, if we decide to implement another coin, that won’t be a problem. Right now, for example, we are experimenting with other coins, but we don’t currently provide the ability to switch to other coins to our clients.

Bitcoinist: You manufacture many of your parts yourself. What benefits does this provide to the quality of the miner?

EV: Yes, we manufacture almost all of the parts ourselves — only the GPU cards and motherboards are provided by the vendors. But we plan to customize them as well and we have already started production of customized GPU cards and motherboards.

Why do we do this? Because we investigated the market found that most components — even something as simple as wires — aren’t produced to given standards. For example, in China, they are produced using low-quality components. They don’t meet the standards at all.

From the very beginning, we wanted to create a top-quality device that will keep working for a long time. Wires, connectors, capacitors, risers, power supplies, and everything else should be of top quality. Our components allow us to produce a device that will keep working for years without any problems. Other devices on the market that we investigated typically aren’t able to serve you for even a year.

Bitcoinist: Liquid cooling is very much Comino’s ‘thing.’ Why are liquid cooling solutions superior to other methods of cooling?

EV: Liquid cooling is extremely effective for keeping chips cool. It is no secret that the temperature is one of the main problems plaguing miners — and actually the whole IT-infrastructure. If you use chips all day long — even overclocked 20 percent on top — it loads hundreds of percents each second and produces a lot of heat, and it should effectively take this heating away from the chips to make them work for a long period of time. Only liquid can solve this problem.

Of course, air cooling is cheaper, but it is not effective. If you use components just for gaming, it requires loading 100 percent for a short period of time — that is why it is appropriate to use air cooling inside desktops and on the common GPU cards. We use liquid cooling because we need to create really effective cooling for chips to make them work for a long period of time.

Besides, it is noiseless, there is no dust on the cards, so the costs for the maintenance will be less than for air cooling as well. 

Bitcoinist: Comino also offers cloud mining services. Tell us a little about that. What are the benefits? 

EV: Yes, we know that our infrastructure will be working for a long time, that is why we created our own data-center with a partner in Sweden and we use our devices to provide cloud mining services as well.

We realize that not everyone wants to mine from home. Some people might prefer cloud mining or even colocation, where they buy the device and then just pay a fee for maintenance and electricity costs, but the device is kept at our facility. Colocation and cloud mining are particularly popular in areas where electricity costs are higher. In Europe, the price for electricity is about 20 Euro cents per one kilowatt.

Bitcoinist: Can Comino miners be used for other purposes besides mining? 

EV: Sure! Right now, all produced miners can be used for many purposes. First of all, for developing other software, like for the development of neural networks, artificial intelligence, and databases. From what I understand, it is very popular to use databases inside GPUs, because GPUs can perform tasks like transferring data, data reduction, and quarrying to big data very quickly. So, that is why it is used now for big data analysis and in-memory databases.

I heard that Alibaba recently bought one of the biggest GPU solutions for databases that is actually being used right now for data analysis. Besides, it can be used for smart contracts. So, yes, it can be used for many tasks.

Bitcoinist: Comino miners are definitely priced at a premium. What benefits does a potential customer get for splashing the cash?   

EV: Firstly, this is plug and play device with top quality components inside that will be working for many years with a stable hash rate. As a result, it will mine more coins than common devices with the same hash rate. One can also use our device in the winter like a heater at home because it is really noiseless and there is no dust inside the cards. The components will be working longer than common components in common miners.

For example, you could buy a miner that costs half of what one of our miners costs, but you would need five such miners to produce the same income in coins and, most likely, they will not be working in five years’ time. Or you could buy just one of our devices, which will be working for many years with a stable hash rate. The pool will get more rewards because it will rate your working process higher.

It is also an impressive looking device, not an eyesore like other devices. It looks fantastic, works great, and is made with top quality components. We often compare it to Apple’s devices — they are more expensive, but you get the desired infrastructure as a result. The quality is worth the price.

Bitcoinist: What markets has Comino found the most success in so far? 

EV: Right now we are focused on the B2B market, specifically big data-centers and larger enterprise clients. For these customers, we offer the Comino Grando, which we introduced this summer at the Taipei exhibition. It is our solution for the B2B marketplace and is ideal for big data-centers.

With the Comino Grando, we can recycle energy and recycle heating for other purposes, like warming liquid or warming houses. PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) for this solution is really low at just about 1.05. That means that just five percent of the unit’s power consumption will be spent on the cooling of your IT-infrastructure. It is really a fantastic solution for the B2B market.

We will also be producing the Comino N1 and Comino N4 versions for the retail market as well.

Bitcoinist: What are your opinions on the current cryptocurrency market? 

EV: Right now, the cryptocurrency market is growing really fast. In terms of cryptocurrencies’ exchange rate into fiat, it can go down, it can go up, it doesn’t matter. To my mind, the infrastructure that supports cryptocurrencies is rapidly growing. New wallets appear, new exchange markets, other software, a lot of things are being done for cryptocurrencies. People are beginning to use it more and more for many purposes: for buying goods and services, for transferring money between parties, and so on.

So the cryptocurrency infrastructure is growing really fast. And some solution should support this infrastructure and, of course, it is miners, which can support it. For them, we are doing really effective solutions, because just energy effective solution should be working for sucha big market.

Bitcoinist: Where do you see the blockchain industry in 5 years? 

EV: I see that blockchain is used very widely on the market and many industries have started already using blockchain. And also I can see that some industries are trying to use blockchain, but they don’t need it at all. Nevertheless, in many cases, the industries are using it for the right purposes. It is really important that blockchain is used a lot.

I see fantastic demand on blockchain developers and in 5 years it will be in school programs.

Bitcoin is like a big game where we need to find all the blocks. And the whole world is playing this game. I know some really useful projects are being done on the basis of the blockchain. They are supposed to start working this or the next year. It will let Bitcoin grow more.

New coins are being developed that solved many current troubles. In 5 years it will be a matter of 10 minutes to start your own coin. Many countries will be using blockchain to solve red-tape problems.

Actually, it is hard to make predictions for such a period of time. Just 2 years, ago Ethereum appeared (initial release was on 30 July 2015) and right now it is the second most valuable cryptocurrency in the world. In five years, of course, there will be other solutions as well. There will be more and more blockchains, which will be evaluated from current state into another and there will solve many troubles with transactions and so on.

There will be, of course, a time when the costs for small transactions will be really low, and for the big transactions it will be the same — like it is right now, just to filter spam transactions.

Another solution will be found to make it resistant to hacker attacks, and people will sign petitions for making cryptocurrencies work on the country level. So, blockchain and cryptocurrencies will be used a lot. For saving the story of us as well.

Bitcoinist: What excites you the most about making Comino miners? 

EV: One thing that excites me the most is that we are producing a green solution — we are trying to save energy and save our planet from ineffective IT-solutions. Miners right now are just wasting energy, which is harmful to our planet. We are producing a new generation of IT-infrastructure which will be extremely effective as well as be more environmentally friendly.

I always wanted to produce something, some technology, that I can touch with my hands, so that is really impressive and important to me.

And, of course, I am really proud, that we have a big international company with offices in many countries, including Germany, Sweden, Latvia, China, Russia, and Cyprus.

Do you have additional questions for Evgeny Vlasov? Ask them in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Comino.

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3 Things People Get Wrong About Bitcoin, According to an Early Investor

Famous Bitcoin early investor Jeffrey Wernick — who also got into Uber and Airbnb as an angel investor — recently told Business Insider that people get a lot of things wrong about the first and foremost cryptocurrency. Here’s some of what he had to say. 


When asked by Business Insider‘s Sara Silverstein what “most people get wrong about bitcoin or cryptocurrency,” the successful financial expert had a lot to say on the matter.

‘It’s a People’s Money’

Firstly, Wernick claims most people today have either neglected to recall or totally forgotten the philosophical purpose which underlined Bitcoin’s creation — namely, that it would be an alternative currency outside the reach of governments and traditional financial institutions. He explained:

People who have got into it now talk more about blockchain than bitcoin, because they’re just looking for an alternative model to make money and they don’t care about — they’re agnostic to the initial philosophical framework that drove people to adopt bitcoin to begin with and kept it alive from 2009 through 2013 or ’14, when all of a sudden, adoption started to grow. There was a small universe of people that actively worked to keep it alive by continuing to mine and continuing to buy and they were doing it because of the concept that they believed in, and that it’s a people’s money.

Indeed, one doesn’t have to look very far to see that every traditional financial institution under the sun is looking to utilize blockchain technology for their own purposes — none of which align with Bitcoin’s ethos.

Bitcoin

‘It Only Faces Headwinds’

And while the eyes of the market focus firmly on the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s pending exchange-traded fund decisions, it might be worth examining what such derivatives have done to another ‘people’s money,’ silver. Also, is Bitcoin meant to be a speculative investment or a currency that undermines an unfair and unjust global financial system, which itself aims to destroy Bitcoin?

Wernick explained:

Since bitcoin has been created in 2009, it’s outperformed every currency, even with governments hostile to it, and a regulatory regime that’s an uncertain regime and the governments have been designing, have been managing it in a way so people cannot know what to expect. So it’s amazing the valuation it has today given the fact that it only faces, it only faces headwinds, no tailwinds. Every government throughout the world is trying to figure out how to stop and kill bitcoin.

The ‘Only Answer’

Investing in Bitcoin, according to Wernick, should be seen as a form of protest against the government and its financial policies — and it’ll probably be a profitable investment at that. He explained:

I think over five years, you’re going to accumulate a lot more wealth than you would in any other alternative investment, but again, you don’t want to buy more than you can afford to lose, because I could be wrong, and you’d be making a statement to the government that says, “What you’re doing is completely unacceptable.” Because if you think about how the financial system works, the financial system punishes the saver and benefits the borrower, but only benefits a small classification of borrowers.

Then the question is, is what, what for a typical middle class person — how do they accumulate wealth? And I think their only answer is to put a certain percentage in crypto.

What do you think about Jeffrey Wernick’s thoughts on Bitcoin? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

The post 3 Things People Get Wrong About Bitcoin, According to an Early Investor appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Largest Wall Street Crypto Firm Lost $134 Million in Q1 2018

Galaxy Digital

Galaxy Digital — a full-service digital assets merchant bank launched by ex-Goldman Sachs macro trader Michael Novogratz — took a financial beating in the first fiscal quarter of 2018. 


Rekt…

The New York-based cryptocurrency-focused merchant bank disclosed its financial report for the first time this week, and the results weren’t great. As reported by CNBC, Galaxy Digital took “a net loss of $103.3 million on trading, with $13.5 million on digital assets and another $85.5 million of unrealized losses on those assets.”

The losses largely stem from the fact that Novogratz launched the company only one month before the first and foremost cryptocurrency, Bitcoin 00, reached its all-time high of just over $20,000. At the time of this writing, it is trading at just under $8,000.

Despite the heavy losses, Novogratz wrote in an official statement:

I am very proud of the progress that we have made since the beginning of the year.

Novogratz also noted that he still has “complete confidence” in Galaxy Digital’s growth and that the company is “strategically positioned to help further institutionalize the digital assets and blockchain industry.”

As noted by CNBC, Galaxy’s financial documents also reveal that — in 2018 alone — “Galaxy Digital has invested $86.8 million across 11 different investments and six acquisitions. The company had $281.7 million in assets as of the end of March, with $225.8 million of that total digital.”

Novogratz Invests $15 Million in White-Label Cryptocurrency Exchange Startup

Novogratz himself also has a large stake in the company and has contributed $302 million in assets to the company.

… But Not Deterred

The news of Galaxy Digital’s losses comes after the company invested $15 million in a startup which helps businesses build cryptocurrency exchanges and tokenize assets. The company in question – AlphaPoint – is also working closely with The Royal Mint and CME Group on developing a trading platform for digital gold.

Speaking on his firm’s latest investment, Novogratz said:

We are in the early stages of a fundamental transformation in financial markets due to the digitization of assets. […] We are excited to partner with AlphaPoint as we continue to help drive this revolutionary change in digital markets.

Previously, Mike Novogratz partnered with Bloomberg to launch a joint cryptocurrency index fund known as the Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index (BGCI).

Are you surprised to learn that Galaxy Digital has taken such significant financial losses in Q1 — or do you think it was expected, given current market conditions? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Reuters.

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Winklevoss Cryptocurrency ETF Denied by SEC Due to Offshore Manipulation Concerns — Price Reacts

Winklevoss

With much of the financial world fixated on the prospect of a bitcoin exchange-traded fund, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reportedly denied the proposal from Gemini founders Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. 


3-1 Against

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reportedly rejected the first-ever cryptocurrency ETF proposal from Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss — the famous entrepreneurs behind cryptocurrency exchange Gemini.

The Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust was already denied by the SEC in 2017. However, CNBC now reports that the twins’ recently submitted rule change proposal has also been rejected by the independent agency of the United States federal government — marking yet another loss in the Winklevoss’ quest for an ETF.

The vote was reportedly 3-1.

Winklevoss

It remains to be seen how this decision will affect other proposals for a Bitcoin-backed ETC.

According to CNBC, the SEC has cited investor protection as the reason behind its denial of the Winklevoss twins’ ETF, claiming that bitcoin is subject to a concerning amount of fraud and manipulation conducted largely from unregulated offshore markets.

The news also follows the SEC’s delaying of an Arca Inc. filing from January 2018 seeking approval to list and trade shares of five Direxion bitcoin ETFs. Earlier this week, news of the postponement came in a U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) post, which read:

The Commission finds it appropriate to designate a longer period within which to issue an order approving or disapproving the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider this proposed rule change.

All eyes now remain firmly fixated on the SEC’s upcoming decision regarding the CBOE bitcoin ETF proposal — which one legal expert believes will be delayed into March 2019.

Update 5:39 pm: The price of Bitcoin has reacted to the news, falling more 2 percent over the last hour after holding impressive gains made over the past week. It now appears as though the short-term upside potential is capped for the market leader, though it remains to be seen whether or not the bears will firmly retake control over the next few days.

What do you think about the Winklevoss’ denied proposal? Do you think we will see a bitcoin ETF this year? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Bitcoinist archives.

[Full Disclosure: The contents of this article are not intended as financial advice from both Bitcoinist and the author.]

The post Winklevoss Cryptocurrency ETF Denied by SEC Due to Offshore Manipulation Concerns — Price Reacts appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.