The Power of Dissent

The Power of Dissent

There’s a lot of FUD and confusion out there in crypto markets right now so I’d like to clarify. Today’s headline is as follows

As we stated in yesterday’s update, one of the many reasons that bitcoin is rising at the moment on anticipation of an ETF decision from the SEC. However, too many people have crossed their E’s with their T’s and F’ed the situation.

The Winklevoss ETF that was rejected (known as Bats) was never expected to pass. The ETF that pundits are excited about was proposed by VanEck and sponsored by the CBOE, which will likely not be decided on until March.

What is notable is the reaction from an SEC commissioner who strongly disagreed with the decision to reject Bats.

In her letter of dissent, Hester Peirce eloquently elaborates on how the decision to strike down Bats “undermines investor protection” and “Dampens innovation.”

The online community has now bestowed on her the nickname “CryptoMom” and her Twitter following is currently exploding.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Geopolitics takes back seat to corporate earnings
  • Turkish Lira falls again on unprecedented sanction threats
  • India Bitcoin prospects have turned notably brighter

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 27th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

Some great results from Amazon last night. The stock is expected to open today at fresh all-time highs. Corporate earnings are definitely trumping geopolitics at the moment.

Meanwhile, Facebook’s record-breaking plunge did seem to drag down the Nasdaq at the opening bell yesterday, but not by much.

The eToro @OutSmartNSDQ CopyFund strategy is also crushing it at the moment.

Turkey Again

The Turkish Lira has been even more volatile than bitcoin lately.

Bitcoin fell 5% last night on the ETF confusion and though the TRY only fell 4%, this is a dramatic development for a fiat currency.

The latest headline is that…

The Dollar is gaining strength against the Turkish Lira. So far, there is a strong resistance just before 5 Lira to the Dollar but if it breaks that…

Good News From India

If you’ve been reading my daily market updates the last few weeks, you’ve probably noticed that the current crypto drama in India is a story worth watching.

Yesterday we had a very positive update that came from an unusual place…

As we know, the central bank of India (RBI) imposed an ostensive ban on cryptocurrencies earlier this month, which is hampering innovation in this space.

Crypto companies have taken to the Supreme Court of India to try and reverse the ban but so far are meeting resistance, and the court is taking its time to decide on the case.

In the meantime, the Finance Ministry is still trying to put together some sort of crypto regulation, which is rumored to focus on regulating cryptocurrencies as commodities.

As we noted above, there is a lot of confusion in this space. Therefore, as I’m not an expert in Indian law, I will refrain from commenting too directly on how the above headline might influence the decisions of the Supreme Court or the Finance Ministry.

What is clear to me, is that having a government wing like the Indian Law Commission recognizing cryptocurrencies in any capacity is a very positive step forward.

We’ll need to watch this space very closely over the next few months. Mass adoption of Bitcoin in India could very well be the tipping point that many crypto enthusiasts are waiting for.

Have an amazing weekend!!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, Shutterstock

The post The Power of Dissent appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Face Slap

Face Slap

Bitcoin has now held above the critical level of $8,000 for more than 40 hours, a clear testament that this recent rally could actually be sustainable and by now all eyes are on $10,000.

What’s most notable is that the break above $8,000 happened on extreme volume. Tuesday’s trading action was high across the board. Online exchanges, Wall Street’s futures contracts, and even on the blockchain itself trading action achieved levels not seen in months.

In traditional markets, when a breakout happens on strong volume it’s considered a more powerful move, which leads me to believe that we might actually be witnessing a trend reversal.

Of course, trading is always risky and cryptoassets are the riskiest market that I’ve ever known. So it always pays to keep a diversified portfolio.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Trade war is off
  • FaceSlap
  • All of Bitcoin’s Reasons to Rally

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 26th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

We never really know where this whole trade war thing is going. Some days it’s on, some days it’s off. Today seems to be off.

Yesterday’s meeting between President Trump and EU Commission President Jean-Laude Juncker bore fruit and an agreement was met.

Of course, investment house war rooms are still busy strategizing on exactly how they will react to any further potential developments. This might not be over just yet…. but it might be. So some stocks did receive a boost this morning, especially in Germany where carmakers that export to the US breathed a YUGE sigh of relief.

Today we’ll have a notable interest rate decision from the ECB at 14:30 Frankfurt time. No change is expected but we always need to be alert in case of any surprises.

Earnings Still Underway

Facebook’s quarterly earnings report that came out last night turned out to be extremely disappointing, to say the least.

Hopes were high going into this report and FB stock closed out the trading session at all-time record highs. Shares are expected to open up way down when the bell rings on Wall Street as the world’s largest social network loses approximately $130 billion of its value.

Amazon will report their earnings after the bell today so watch out for that one.

Why is Bitcoin Flying?

With all the bullish sentiment on Bitcoin at the moment, I would like to pour a little cold water on the fire.

To do that, we kind of need to pick apart some of the top reasons that are bouncing around the media…

Blackrock: This is the least serious IMHO. Blackrock’s confirmation was that they’ve been looking into it for a while but that nothing is material imminent. Furthermore, BLK‘s CEO Larry Fink completely played down investor interest in this.

Facebook & Google Ads: Facebook has reversed their blanket ban on crypto advertisements and is now whitelisting credible crypto players. They’re not in any rush but it’s clear that this channel is likely to open further in the coming weeks. Google is being a bit less clear about their policy but there are rumors floating that they’re about to follow suit.

Bitcoin ETF: This is a rather popular opinion about why the market is rising. The SEC is expected to make a decision to approve or disapprove a new bitcoin backed ETF that is sponsored by the CBOE. The ETF market is huge, so this could potentially open the market to a world of new well-funded buyers. However, the timeline here might be a bit distorted. Here’s an excellent thread that explains we’ll probably be looking at a final deadline of early March 2019.

Japan SBI: A new virtual currency desk by the financial giant SBI Group opened for business on June 4th. This could definitely be leading to fresh inflows to the market, but I haven’t managed to find any volume stats for them just yet.

BoJ Hedge: This is a theory of my own that I tweeted about yesterday. The following graph shows the yield of Japanese bonds (blue) spiking up on Sunday due to speculation that the Bank of Japan is about to take action.

My original theory was that Japanese traders who are fearful of the government’s intention to weaken the Yen have bought bitcoin as a hedge.

However, several acute followers have pointed out that the moves expected by Japan could serve to strengthen the Yen. While it’s true that the BoJ might be about to raise their interest rates, which would probably strengthen the Yen, historically Japan likes to maintain low rates and the official policy of Prime Minister Abe and the BoJ is to keep the Yen weak.

Reflecting further… this could simply be a matter of money flow. Bond yields trade inverse to price. Meaning, that the yield spike we see on the chart above actually means that bonds sold off. It’s entirely possible that some of the money that came out off of the bond markets actually found its way to bitcoin.

In any case, nobody can say with 100% certainty why the rally is happening. It could be any of the above or none of them, or a combination. Lord knows there were also plenty of positive updates throughout the year that didn’t end up affecting prices.

The market is made up of people and their perceptions. What has become clear over the last six months is that many people see the area between $5,500 and $7,500 as cheap and there are plenty of willing buyers at those levels.

Whether that area will be pushed up to $10,000 or $100,000, or even down to $1,000 going forward is anyone’s guess.

Let’s have an awesome day ahead!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro

The post Face Slap appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Mixed Feelings

Mixed Feelings

Yesterday we saw a clear break above the key psychological level of $8,000 per bitcoin. Now the question on everyone’s mind is where did this move come from and is it sustainable?

Now, I know that many of you are reading this note for just one reason and we have some rather unique crypto observations for you below but before we get into that it is important to always bear in mind that a portfolio that is made up of only crypto is like a recipe that’s all spices. Cryptoassets are highly volatile and so should only make up a small part of your overall portfolio.

Let me know if you have any questions, comments, insight, or feedback on these updates.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Mixed Feelings
  • Gold Line
  • Healthy Crypto Market

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 25th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

Stock markets are displaying very clear mixed emotions at the moment. On the one hand are all of the fears about the ongoing trade war and the Fed’s tightening of monetary policy. On the other hand, corporate earnings are going well.

Facebook reports today after the bell. Their stock closed yesterday at a record $214 per share in anticipation of an outstanding report.

Traditional Markets

Gold Line

The precious metals have been getting hammered these last few weeks. From what it seems, the reason for the slide is mainly due to Trump’s new tariffs on Steel and Aluminum. Meanwhile, goldsilverplatinum, and copper are getting really cheap.

Of course, there’s no telling just how low they might go but a contrarian trader might want to take note and even consider scaling into a long-term position.

This morning, I noticed the following trend line on gold, which seems to be undergoing a rather serious test at the moment.

Gold Line

Crypto Market’s Healthy Rally

According to the volume on exchanges, it seems clear that the rally is being led by East Asia. This is depicted in the following 4 graphs.

The leader is the Japanese Yen. Notice the big mountain at the time of the surge above $8,000, which took place at approximately 13:30 to 15:00 on these graphs…

Crypto Market's Healthy Rally

The next is South Korea, who are some of the biggest crypto traders in the world. The peak here is only at 273 BTC but the correlation between the volumes and the price movement is very clear.

The US Dollar had a spike as well but it was much more focused. Meaning that the Americans only participated during the extreme part of the surge and less in the before and after party.

For the purpose of this analysis, I’d like to include volumes of the USDT (Tether), which were notably unaffected and remained constant throughout the ordeal.

Of course, all of the above comes from Cryptocompare who generally pulls their data from online exchanges. When we analyze the bitcoin blockchain, we see something even better.

In this graph, we can see that the on-chain activity is indeed increasing lately and has now topped 2.5 transactions per second for the first time since February.

This is a clear sign that whatever the reasons for the surge…

  • Possible Bitcoin ETF
  • Blackrock’s confirmation of crypto interest
  • Goldman Sachs crypto interest
  • Fear of Bank of Japan policy
  • anything else

… the excitement doesn’t stop at speculation and we can indeed see momentum building in the Bitcoin network.

Have a wonderful day!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro

The post Mixed Feelings appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Now That’s Sharp

Now That's Sharp

Everything that you will ever do comes with a certain amount of risk and sometimes we can actually measure the level of risk and more importantly determine if it’s worth taking.

For example, it’s much safer to sit on the couch than it is to cross the street and it’s much riskier still to get in the car and drive. However, sometimes it’s necessary to take on a bit of risk to achieve your goals.

In the world of investments, things are a lot more quantifiable, which makes the level of risk and potential return much easier to calculate. One of the most common ways to measure risk premium is the Sharpe Ratio.

This unique formula is designed to measure one investment against another and inform the investor what type of return they’re getting in relation to the risk they’re taking.

As you know, eToro has added a simple 1 to 10 risk score on all traders so that copiers can understand the risk factor of a person who they’re considering copying. More recently, we’ve been putting together several different CopyFund strategies to make it easier for you to manage a portfolio.

Today, we are proud to introduce the next step in this evolution with the @SharpeTraders CopyFund. This portfolio will be rebalanced on a quarterly basis to automatically copy the top investors on the platform giving you the best possible risk-adjusted returns.

Many thanks to @GilAlpert for the concept and design of this CopyFund and to our excellent investment committee for getting it off the ground.

@MatiGreenspan
Toro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Risk Appetite is Back
  • Google Smashes Earnings
  • BTC 8K!!!

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 24th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

Risk appetite is back in the markets!

Regardless of all the talk about trade wars and fed tightening, looking at the charts this morning it’s easy to see that investors are ready to take on some risks today.

The stock markets are green across the board, commodities seem to have found their footing and even the altcoins are shooting for the moon.

Google Earnings

One thing that could be boosting investor sentiment today is the phenomenal earnings report delivered by Alphabet last night.

Overall, Google’s parent company posted a revenue gain of 23.9% over the last year in advertising revenue and posted a gain of 36.5% in their “other revenues” category. The Earnings Per Share (EPS) comes out to $4.4, which is much higher than analysts were forecasting.

The EPS would have been $11.75 if not for the massive $5 billion fine from the EU antitrust lawsuit.

Shares soared in after-hours trading and are expected to open today at a brand new all-time record high around $1,250 per share.

Also, the crypto community is getting excited about Google because

Crypto Rally Continues

As indicated above, it’s not just bitcoin that’s flying today. Contrary to what we’ve been seeing over the last week, this morning it seems that the altcoins are finally benefiting from the renewed crypto enthusiasm.

During the Japanese trading session, Bitcoin managed to take out the key psychological level of $8,000 per coin, clearing the way for a possible move up to $10,000. As of this writing, the price of bitcoin is up a total of 38% from it’s lowest point of the year, which was made less than a month ago on June 29th.

Let’s hope this rally continues.

As always, let me know if you have any questions, comments, or feedback. I’m always happy to hear it.

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, Shutterstock

The post Now That’s Sharp appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Flight to Quality

Flight to Quality

The crypto market is usually fairly disconnected from the day-to-day activities of central banks. Usually…

Last night we got a taste of what can happen when markets get a whiff of upcoming policy changes by the market’s largest players. The Bank of Japan, which has been aggressively printing money since 2013, announced last night that they’re willing to buy an unlimited amount of bonds.

The reaction came swiftly as many analysts feel that this is simply a precursor to deeper changes in the BoJ’s policy. Japanese Bond Yields went through the roof.

At the same time, the price of Bitcoin spiked notably finding fresh new highs following the BoJ’s announcement.

A quick look at the global volumes confirms that this trading action did indeed occur predominantly in Japanese Yen.

It seems that Japanese traders have their own ways to hedge the actions of their central bank.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Tariffs on Everything
  • Earnings Season
  • Crypto Flight to Quality

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 23rd. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

President Trump became even more aggressive on China last Friday.

The markets were none too happy about that and the US Dollar quickly fell to the lows.

The stock markets also took a small hit but overall, the news didn’t seem to have much impact on sentiment. Here we can see the China50’s response which was to give back just a bit of its gains from earlier in the session.

Over the weekend, we saw the G20 meeting in Buenos Aires where officials did seem to be concerned about all this trade war talk.

Investors are currently doing their best to figure out exactly which stocks and ETFs are going to be hit in the increasingly likely scenario of an all-out trade war. This could be one of the reasons that the Nasdaq has continued to attain new record highs despite the apparent market turmoil.

Very likely, we’ll see an increased focus on the upcoming earnings announcements as we get into a busy week.

Crypto Flight to Quality

The hearing in India that has been a large focus of these daily market updates over the last few weeks took place on Friday as well. The outcome…. inconclusive.

It seems that arguments were heard by the court but unfortunately, or fortunately, they’re still lacking critical input from the Securities and Exchange Board of India and a few others. The next hearing is set for September 11th.

In the meantime, the crypto market has continued to creep up over the last few days but similar to what we’re seeing in the stock markets, alternative investors are getting a bit more picky about which cryptos they pile into.

As the oldest and most well-established cryptocurrency, Bitcoin itself has been the only gainer this weekend as it continues to regain dominance over the alts.

Though I’m not very fond of using market cap as a yardstick for cryptos and even less excited about using the bitcoin dominance index that is derived from the market caps, this does seem to be the best way to explain what’s happening in the last few weeks.

At the beginning of the year, Bitcoin reached an all-time low of 32% of the total market. As we can see, it’s been rising steadily since then as investors realize that the hard cap of 21 million bitcoins that will ever be created, is Satoshi Nakamoto’s way of ensuring the rarity of cryptocurrencies and is the only way to ensure that it will remain a viable store of value going forward.

Have an amazing week ahead!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, Pexels

The post Flight to Quality appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Bankers & Politicians

Bankers & Politicians

Today is the day. Out of all the meetups, conferences, and hearings that we’ve seen regarding the future of money over the last year, IMHO none are as critical as the decision expected from India’s supreme court today.

Like several other places in the world, the Indian government is now working hard to form their policy regarding bitcoin and cryptocurrencies but the banking sector has made it clear that they will do everything in their power to halt this.

When Prime Minister Modi made the move to remove 86% of the paper money in India on November 8th, 2016 he inadvertently handed a big win to the banking system and it seems they’re willing to do everything in their power to maintain the status quo.

The crypto ban imposed by the Reserve Bank of India earlier this month is a clear example of this effort. Let’s hope that the judicial system sees through this today and strikes down this policy, doing what is right for the wider public now and for future generations.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Central Bank Independence
  • Stock Markets are Mixed
  • Divergence in Crypto

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 20th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

It was funny, but yesterday I was teaching a group of new eToro representatives about central banks and happened to use an example of what’s happening in the news.

The point I was making is that central banks are officially disconnected from politics but that politics do end up influencing their actions and vice versa.

In his testimony on Wednesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell did his best not to take sides on the current trade dispute between the USA and China. However, when pressed, he did admit that the proposed sanctions of $200 billion on Chinese imports would have a negative impact on the economy.

This is similar to when Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, stated before the Brexit referendum that if the vote passes it would hurt the Pound. The statement doesn’t take sides, it simply states the view of someone who is in a good position to understand the economic impact.

So, it was a bit surprising that a few hours after our lesson, Donald Trump had a few remarks of his own about what he thinks the Fed should or shouldn’t be doing.

Though President Trump insists that he’s not trying to influence the Fed’s decision, the very fact that he stated his opinion will likely have an impact on policy, it certainly had an impact on the markets.

Here we can see the US Dollar falling at the time of the interview.

The price of gold also reacted to the administration’s new policy.

Well… maybe not a new policy. Trump did blast Yellen while on the campaign trail for raising interest rates but this is the first time that any US President has so publicly disputed central bank policy, at least not since Bush Senior & Greenspan.

Meanwhile, Trump is still under pressure for his performance with Putin in Helsinki and we’re watching that play out in the press and in Congress.

Stock markets remain mixed while all this sinks in.

Mixed Crypto Rally

There’s been a lot of excitement in the crypto markets over the last few days and everybody wants to know where this is going.

Here’s an article that’s rather bullish…

…and here is one that’s quite bearish…

My thoughts…

It’s still too early to say for certain. The chart of bitcoin is sending rather mixed signals. On the one hand, the downward trendline (yellow) that that has loomed over Bitcoin for the better part of this year has now been broken.

On the other hand, the current rally has stopped significantly short of breaking the strong line of resistance (dotted blue) that kept the price notably depressed in early June. A break above that could very well lead us to $10,000 (green line) but only a clean break above that would indicate a shift in the medium term trend.

One point that is giving a positive sign is the level of divergence between different digital assets. Here we can see a graph containing all the cryptos currently traded at eToro over the last few days.

We’ve noticed in the past that when the trend is down the cryptos tend to stick more closely together, whereas when things are moving up we tend to see more mixed results. The price action over the last 48 hours would certainly indicate the latter.

As always, tag me at the links below if you need anything at all. Wishing you a very pleasant weekend.

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, iStockPhoto

The post Bankers & Politicians appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Money in Government and Religion

Money in Government and Religion

When dealing with your personal finances, how often do you involve religion in your calculations?

I imagine the answer will be different for everyone and will likely vary from “every time” to “never” depending on your background, chosen lifestyle or where you live.

As various governments and institutions acclimate to cryptocurrencies, religious movements are following suit. While the Vatican and Pope Francis are yet to come to any conclusions, it seems that the Muslim community is warming up to them.

Most recently, a forward thinking and well-recognized group called the Shariyah Review Bureau have released an official certificate declaring that the cryptocurrency known as Steller Lumens meets all the requirements to be compliant with Sharia Law.

Sharia Certificate

The laws of Riba (paying and receiving interest) are quite complex and very strict for orthodox Muslims and so this new ordinance goes a long way toward opening the financial revolution to an entire culture.

The price of Steller Lumens XLM tokens is up sharply since the announcement. Feel free to also review our recent research paper on Steller here.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Beneath the Surface – GBP
  • Master(Crypto)Card
  • Crypto Hearings

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 19th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

International markets continue to be dominated by fears of an escalating trade war on the surface, and fears of a tightening Fed cycle underneath it.

In the UK, the dynamic is similar. On the surface, there is a very messy Brexit playing out in Parliament, and underneath is the Bank of England (BoE) that is stuck between a rock and hard place.

Often it’s what lies beneath the surface that tends to be more critical. After some rather sour retail data was released this morning, it seems the BoE is less likely to increase their interest rates at their August 2nd meeting.

The Pound Sterling has been on a nasty slide since the peak in mid-April, and this latest update has it seriously testing the 1.30 psychological support level.

Traditional Markets

Master(Crypto)Card

When Visa & MasterCard came out with a crypto ban earlier this year it definitely affected things.

Previous studies showed that most crypto purchases in the USA were done with credit cards and so this ban, as well as the advertising bans by Google and Facebook, may very well have contributed to the current retracement in crypto this year.

A few months later, when MasterCard reporting their quarterly earnings, it became clear that the loss of business was actually hurting MA‘s bottom line.

On Tuesday, the credit card giant won a surprising patent in the United States. According to the filing, it seems that MasterCard may have had a change of heart and is now looking to bridge the gap between blockchain-based assets and fiat currencies.

Of course, we have no idea what they intend to do with this patent or when/if they will ever put it to use. However, this is certainly an encouraging update for those hoping for a greater level of cooperation between crypto and traditional finance.

Master(Crypto)Card

Hear Ye, Hear Ye!!

Both crypto hearings in the USA seemed to go quite well, with the exception of an outburst from Congressman Brad Sherman who said that the USA should ban purchasing and mining cryptocurrencies.

Sherman is a known opponent of cryptocurrencies who’s top campaign contributors include the online payment processor Allied Wallet, the company with the most to lose, should cryptocurrencies gain more prominence.

The good news is that Congressman Sherman’s allies in these efforts are dwindling as many government officials do see the value of a new technology that allows for the decentralization of applications and creates programmable money, and the rest of the meeting seemed very productive.

Over in India, an even more important hearing is about to be held in a country that could prove to be critical for the adoption of cryptocurrencies depending on what happens tomorrow.

The Supreme Court of India is now tasked with deciding whether to strike down or uphold a crypto ban imposed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) that went into effect earlier this month. At present time, we really have no idea which way they will side. Government officials have weighed in, mostly anonymously, on both sides.

We also don’t know if a firm conclusion will be reached tomorrow or if there will be additional proceedings later. We do know that the Finance Ministry itself has not outlawed cryptocurrencies and are currently putting together a package of guidelines on how they should be regulated.

At the moment, there are very few options to buy bitcoin using Indian Rupees and so this market has been effectively shut out. If we do get a firm resolution from the court tomorrow, this will potentially open up the crypto market to the world’s second most populated country, a country that could certainly use a decentralized form of money at this time.

Let’s have an amazing day ahead!

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

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

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

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

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro

The post Money in Government and Religion appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

DJ King Crypto Banker

DJ King Crypto Banker

If you’re reading this, you probably agree that the old school financial industry is in need of a shakeup. It seems that Goldman Sachs agrees.

This hit track is a remix of the old Fleetwood Mac song “Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow.”  It was created by Goldman’s incoming CEO David Solomon (AKA: DJ D-Sol). Named after two ancient kings and an angel, Solomon will assume the throne on October 1st.

Current CEO Lloyd Blankfein was famously undecisive about cryptocurrencies, yet over the last few months, it’s become clear that the bank is ramping up their cryptotrading activities in a big way.

Solomon has been a lot more clear on crypto and has gone on record saying that Goldman is focused on crypto due to a high level of demand from their clients.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Dollar Climbs – Gold Falls
  • Bitcoin Party Time
  • Double Double Crypto Day

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 18th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

President Trump admitted yesterday to making a mistake. After causing a global stir backing Putin over the FBI at the Helsinki summit, Trump has now walked back his comments and even admitted for the first time that he agrees with the assessment that Russia was indeed behind the meddling in the 2016 presidential elections.

Though many remain unconvinced, the markets remain unfazed and instead the focus for many analysts remains on the possibility of a ramped up trade war with China and on the Fed’s actions.

In his testimony yesterday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell did his best not to be political but he did note that the effects of further tariffs would likely be felt throughout the US economy. Today Powell testifies before the House Financial Services committee. We can probably expect further questions from the House regarding the specific reaction the economy might have to these tariffs.

Stocks are rather mixed today but we do have notable moves in the currency market where the US Dollar is gaining strength.

The US Dollar Index is once again bumping up against resistance at 95 points. If this level is passed, it could lead to further gains, especially since the United States seems to be a lot more aggressive than the rest of the world on their plans to raise interest rates.

In line with the stronger Dollar, the metals have continued to decline. Gold is now the cheapest it’s been in over a year.

Bitcoin Surge!!

After more than a month of doing nothing, bitcoin broke out yesterday by rising $656 in 40 minutes, bringing life and optimism back into the market.

Here we can see the strong break above the key resistance level of $6,800, clearing quickly past $7,000 then spending a short time above $7,500 before a retracement.

By looking at the volumes, it seems that the cause of the surge was from some fresh money entering the market. This graph from www.cryptocompare.com shows the incredible volume spike at the time of the surge.

This one shows the volumes by currency. The blue circle is the exact time of the surge. Notice the spike in USD volumes?

Lately, we’ve been noticed a trend that Tether (USDT) has been becoming more prominent in overall volumes. Tether volumes generally indicate crypto traders speculation on the exchanges. The fact that this surge happened on USD and not Tether might indicate that it is due to fresh money coming in.

Double Double Crypto Day

Today the US Congress is set to hold not one, but two separate hearings regarding cryptocurrencies. This is a clear sign that the US government is taking the crypto industry seriously and it seems the aim of both hearings will be to help not harm innovation in the space.

The double-header comes as the SEC’s mailbox is reportedly inundated with letters from citizens urging them to approve VanEck’s Bitcoin backed ETF at their hearing on August 10th.

Shifting over to Wall Street, it seems that the bitcoin monthly futures contracts on both the CME and the CBOE group will expire today. As we’ve stated before, there is nothing to fear from the expiration of these contracts. The chances that any large player is trying to manipulate the markets using them is very slim.

Just to get a picture of the volumes of these markets, I’ve pulled the following graph from the Bloomberg terminal for you. This shows the daily volumes on the CBOE’s XBT futures since inception.

The small white line shows the average daily turnover, which is just under 5,000 BTC.

Even though the volumes on the CME are higher, it’s less significant for this analysis since they are using a more complex index as a reference rate for contract settlement and thus would be much more difficult for anyone to try and manipulate.

As always, let me know if you have any questions, comments, or feedback. I’m always happy to hear them. Let’s have an excellent day ahead!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, Goldman Sachs

The post DJ King Crypto Banker appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

The King is a Fink

The King is a Fink

It’s true, I’ve always enjoyed reading the paper. When I was younger I used to track the price of gold daily in my grandfather’s copy of the Wall Street Journal. Before that though, I was drawn to the funnies.

The Wizard of ID is a classic. For those of you who aren’t familiar, it’s about a tyrannous but stout dictator, who hated it when people would call him a “fink,” even though the term has many meanings.

Speaking on Bloomberg yesterday, Blackrock’s CEO Larry Fink weighed in on many important issues including the ongoing trade wars as well as shooting down recent rumors that Blackrock is about to get into crypto.

With $6.28 trillion under management, Blackrock is one of the largest financial institutions in the world and Fink is definitely the king. So it pays to listen to what he sees from this unique point of view.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Trumputin Turning Heads
  • Earnings Season (New Tool)
  • 75 Lambo Traffic Jam (New Research Paper on ADA)

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 17th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

Shock and awe were witnessed on the global main stage yesterday at the Helsinki Imperial Palace, where President Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump made jaws drop by aligning themselves on more than a half dozen hot-button issues.

Picking up the most headlines was this statement, where Trump seemed to side with Putin over his own Intelligence Agency. Yet, despite the calls of “treasonous Trump” from both Democrats and Republicans, the best the American people can hope for are some fair and compelling conclusions from special investigator Robert Mueller.

Meanwhile, stock markets are firmly in the red in Asia and Europe this morning as talk of a trade war and Fed tightening overshadow bullish investor sentiment.

Later today, about 30 minutes after the opening bell on Wall Street, we’ll get a special spectacle. Fed Chair Jerome Powell will be in front of the US Senate Banking Committee, in addition to his prepared statement, there’ll also be a Q&A session. Should be fun to watch.

Earnings Season Underway (New Tool)

For those of you holding individual stocks, which I hope is most of you, earnings reports are important. Yesterday, some sour earnings sent Netflix down by nearly 15% after hours.

In order to help you keep better track of these opportunities, we’ve put together a nifty tool to help you keep track of which companies are about to publish their results.

Please bookmark this page: https://www.etoro.com/investing/earnings-reports/

Simply scroll down to see the schedule, as well as the forecasted EPS. If you’re interested in a specific stock, you can click the “+” button to add it directly to your watchlist. As well, you can search directly for upcoming announcements by company or by a future date.

Ether Spammer

Five million green teas, 75 Lambos, 25 Coinbase seed rounds, or 0.9% of the Telegram ICO.

According to Vitalik Buterin, that’s what it’s costing someone to spam the Ethereum network. On Sunday, the Ethereum network was clogged pretty much the entire day reaching a peak of 62,715 unconfirmed transactions at one point.

While Ethereum is by far the most popular platform for dApps at the moment, it’s clear that if they don’t scale quickly it may not stay that way forever.

New Research Paper (ADA)

Several blockchain 3.0 competitors are already under construction and after looking at all the top contenders, we’ve found that one of the most promising ones is Cardano.

For your convenience, we’ve put together the following research paper in order to assist you to make the best possible investment decisions when considering this unique and exciting token for your portfolio.

Please find the new research paper at eToro.tw/Research-ADA

As with all emerging technologies investing in this project may be risky. Because the network is still in its infancy, we really have no way of pinpointing exactly what each ADA token should be worth and so should only be used as a small part of a well-diversified portfolio.

Let’s have an awesome day ahead!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan

Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati
Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/
Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro

The post The King is a Fink appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Slowly but Surely

Slowly but Surely

In a country that has seen an estimated 99% devaluation of their currency over the last year, even $1 is seen as a lot of money.

These images that recently surfaced on Reddit are reportedly showing a donation of just $230 that has been channeled into Venezuela through a cryptocurrency called Nano.

Of course, it’s incredibly difficult to verify the authenticity of such photographs, but having the username and subreddit written on paper in some of the shots helps things.

As we’ve stated before, the real world adoption of cryptocurrencies is happening now on the ground in places where it’s needed most, and Venezuela is arguably one of those places. The success story highlighted above is hardly an isolated incident. The group Eat BCH has been doing this since last year.

A quick look at the Local Bitcoins volume there shows another spike in peer to peer transactions over the past week. Notice how volumes peaked in April of 2017, then died down during the peak of the bitcoin hype in November/December but are now rising again steadily.

The last bar on the chart shows a total of 590 BTC, which at today’s prices is $3.8 million, which may not seem like much but in the current economy of  Venezuela is actually huge.

@MatiGreenspan
eToro, Senior Market Analyst

Today’s Highlights

  • Trump Meets Putin
  • China Growing Slowly
  • Quiet Crypto

Please note: All data, figures & graphs are valid as of July 16th. All trading carries risk. Only risk capital you can afford to lose.

Traditional Markets

All eyes on Helsinki this morning as President Trump prepares for his closed-door meeting with Vladimir Putin.

Putin is still beaming after hosting a very successful World Cup and President Trump is coming from a rather controversial European tour. The fact that they’re even having this one on one meeting is emboldening critics who say that the two are in collusion.

One of the things to watch out for is crude oil. Trump has been rather critical of OPEC’s efforts, urging them to do more to push down the price. The price of gas in the United States has been rising lately and it is putting pressure on his base.

Russia has so far maintained that the surge in pricing is due to Trump’s new sanctions on Iran, which have reduced supply in the market.

Last Wednesday, oil slid 4.8% (purple circle) from the top of its massive bull run that has been playing out over the last year.

China Slowly

Markets in Japan are closed today in observance of Marine Day. Perhaps it’s for the best as Asian stocks are taking a hit.

For a change, the narrative isn’t necessarily about the trade war either, at least not on the surface. China’s GDP growth figures announced early this morning highlighted the lackluster economy. Here we can see GDP growth rate since 2003. What’s clear from this graph is that a reading of 6.7% is really on the low end.

However, even though low, the numbers weren’t unexpected. As indicated by the brown bar in the above chart, the numbers were exactly as forecasted. The China50 index is currently 24% off of its peak from January 24th, so today’s action isn’t that much of a hit in the grand scheme of things.

The Nasdaq, on the other hand, hit another new all-time high on Friday, while the precious metals resumed their decent.

Quiet Crypto

Prices in the crypto market have remained stable over the weekend. In fact, the price of bitcoin hasn’t moved much at all since early June.

As we’ve stated before, slow-moving prices are a good thing for cryptocurrencies. The more you can count on a stable exchange rate, the more likely people are to use the asset as a store of value.

The downward sentiment on Bitcoin is also showing signs of abating. As we can see in the graph below, the strongest trendline from this pullback (dotted blue line) was broken in early April, and the second strongest (yellow line) has been broken at the start of July.

Some chartists theorize that we could be in for another leg down towards $5,000 a coin, which wouldn’t surprise me if it does happen but could also be done in a calm manner that would not indicate any further downward pressure.

As always, please feel free to contact me directly with any questions, comments, feedback, or additional insight.

Wishing you an amazing weekend!

This content is provided for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered to be investment advice or recommendation.
The outlook presented is a personal opinion of the analyst and does not represent an official position of eToro.
Past performance is not an indication of future results. All trading involves risk; only risk capital you are prepared to lose.
Cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework.

Best regards,

Mati Greenspan
Senior Market Analyst

Connect with me on…

eToro: http://etoro.tw/Mati

Twitter: https://twitter.com/matigreenspan

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/matisyahu/

Telegram: https://t.me/MatiGreenspan


Images courtesy of eToro, Shutterstock

The post Slowly but Surely appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.