For the co-founder and partner of cryptocurrency firm CryptoOracle, Lou Kerner, patience is key when it comes to investing in bitcoin.

Speaking to CNBC, Kerner said bitcoin investors should take comfort in the example of tech giant Amazon, which lost significant value when the dot-com bubble burst but has now emerged as the world’s largest online retailer by market capitalization.

“If you go back to the internet bubble, which is what a lot of us in crypto look at for direction, Amazon, arguably one of the greatest companies in the history of the mankind, was down over 95 percent over two years,” Kerner said in an interview with the business news channel.

Not for the Faint-Hearted

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According to Kerner, investing in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies requires one to have the stomach for handling volatility. The current market weaknesses of crypto, per Kerner, can be attributed to the fact that digital assets lack underlying value other than confidence. In Kerner’s view, the bearish sentiment will, however, pass as the case for bitcoin as a store of value takes hold:

“I think it’s a store of value. I think it’s the greatest store of value ever created. It should surpass gold over time. It won’t happen overnight.”

With the market capitalization of bitcoin currently under US$80 billion at current prices, the flagship cryptocurrency would have to appreciate more than a hundredfold to reach gold’s status.

In his own words, much of the faith Kerner has in bitcoin can be attributed to a law coined by Roy Amara, a professor at Stanford University, which states that in the short term, the impact of transformative technology is overestimated while in the long term the impact is underestimated.

Bulls Still Standing

Kerner is not alone in holding a bullish view of bitcoin despite the prevailing bearish conditions. As CCN recently reported, the co-founder of Fundstrat Global Advisors, Tom Lee, still maintains that bitcoin will hit the US$15,000 price target by the end of this year.

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Doubling Down: Tom Lee Won’t Abandon $15,000 Year-End Bitcoin Price Forecast https://www.ccn.com/doubling-down-tom-lee-wont-abandon-15000-year-end-bitcoin-price-forecast/ 

Doubling Down: Tom Lee Stands by $15,000 Year-End Bitcoin Price Target

Bitcoin permabull Tom Lee slashed his year-end bitcoin price target to $15,000, citing fallout from a general market slump among tech stocks.

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Terming the recent market downturn an “awkward transition,” Lee is optimistic that institutional investors will embrace crypto in larger numbers once there is regulatory clarity.

Another diehard bitcoin bull who has not wavered in the current bearish climate is the co-founder and CEO of Blockstream, Adam Back. Earlier this week, Back projected in a tweet that in the coming years bitcoin could be trading in the US$250,000 to US$500,000 range:

“I consider $250k-$500k/BTC plausible in the years ahead, from the digital gold, censor-resistent competitor to physical gold, and internet native digital money.”

This post credited to ccn Image from Shutterstock. Charts from TradingView.

Ramit Sethi, author of the bestselling “I Will Teach You to Be Rich” has taken a swipe at crypto hodlers, suggesting that their investment strategy is fundamentally faulty because it is based on emotional identity instead of rational analysis.

In his opinion, the reason many crypto investors insist on suffering through bad market periods is because to them, the act of investing in crypto assets is no longer the simple investment decision that it should be, but is rather a part of their identity, which makes them double down on losing positions instead of making the rational decision to exit the market.

Crypto Investment and Politics – An Unlikely Parallel

2018 has been an extremely difficult year for crypto holders and short term investors looking for profits, with the bear market continuing to exert sustained downward pressure on asset prices despite optimistic predictions from a few analysts.

According to Sethi, the tendency to double down on a particular decision in the face of evidence pointing otherwise is aptly demonstrated by a large number of cryptocurrency investors who have not actually made any money from investing in crypto assets and in fact have very little real hope of doing so, but doggedly insist on holding their losing investment positions.

Specifically referencing a popular crypto market theory about ‘buying the dip‘ or investing in a market that does not look like recovering anytime soon, Sethi stated that this is a telltale sign of a situation where decision making has been divorced from rational investment practice, and is now purely emotional, based on crypto’s status as a part of the investor’s individual identity.

Such behaviour, Sethi said, is analogous to the way many people often publicly double down on their support for a politician when bad behaviour on his or her part is exposed.

Societal Messaging and Investment Decision Making

Going further, Sethi stated that the development of emotional identities based on wrong or flawed information and thought patterns is a near-ubiquitous occurrence within human society, particularly on the subject of money and investment.

Giving an example of how societal messaging can lead to irrational investment decisions, Sethi pictured the following scenario juxtaposing societal messaging with the rational decision should be:

“MONEY MESSAGE: “The best way to save money is to cut spending.”

SOLUTION: “There’s a limit to how much I can save, but there’s no limit to how much I can earn.”

MONEY MESSAGE: “This cryptocurrency / stock is the hottest investment to get rich quick!”

SOLUTION: “There’s no such thing as a get rich quick scheme. The only way to be rich is to scale up my earnings and invest for the long run.” “

In Sethi’s words, the presence of such powerful but silent messages in most people’s thinking paradigms makes it such that they live their entire lives abiding by ‘rules’ set for them by societal pressure, without even being aware of their existence. Over time he said, such adherence to unspoken societal rules can become dangerous by convincing people that they need to carry out certain behaviours because they must, and not because they should, or even necessarily want to.

To solve this problem he said, crypto investors and other groups of people should carry out regular self-analysis so as to audit the messages that have come to form the core of their identity. In so doing he said, it would be possible to avoid getting caught in the trap of becoming a “crypto person,” comparable in rationality to being a Republican, Democrat or Libertarian, as against maintaining an independent identity.

Summing up his thoughts on the matter he said:

“I don’t mind identities. I have a few of my own: Personal finance guy, Gym rat, Hot sauce fan. But be extremely cautious about the messages you tell yourself, because once you internalize it, you’ll do anything to justify your choices.”

This post credited to ccn Featured image from Shutterstock.

Lou Kerner, a partner at venture capital firm CryptoOracle, compared the current slump in crypto prices to the dot-com burst in the early 2000s in an interviewwith CNBC Nov. 21.

On CNBC’s “Worldwide Exchange” show, Kern stated that strong coins should be viewed like the big companies that came out of the dot-com bubble, using the example of e-commerce giant Amazon:

“If you go back to the internet bubble, which is what a lot of us in crypto look at for direction, Amazon, arguably one of the greatest companies in the history of the mankind, was down over 95 percent over two years.”

Amazon went public in May 1997, with its share price of $18 per each. By December 1998, the company’s share price surged to more than $300 per share, but right after the dot-com bubble burst in March 2000, the share price slumped to just under $6 per share. Over time, Amazon managed to become the second U.S. company to reach a market value of $1 trillion.

Kerner said that current volatility is nothing compared to what longtime BTC investors have encountered, recalling a day in 2013 when the market fell by 70 percent overnight.  “This is what investing in crypto is all about,” Kerner added, also noting that the impact of all great technological changes is overestimated in the short term and underestimated in the long term.

The venture capitalist further stated that Bitcoin is “the greatest store of value ever created,” adding that the leading cryptocurrency will surpass gold over time. When asked what could be behind the recent slump on the cryptocurrency market, Kerner argued that “crypto has been so weak because [for] most of it there is no underlying value outside of confidence.”

Many industry experts have shared a positive outlook regarding the future of crypto market. Bart Smith, digital asset head at U.S.-based global trading and technology firm Susquehanna, said he is still a long-term BTC believer amidst the market crash, emphasizing that crypto trading is a “long game” and that “every great idea is volatile.”

Spencer Bogart, a partner at the venture capital firm Blockchain Capital, also believes that crypto opportunities are “still gigantic” despite the current bear market. Bogart also expressed his “mono-crypto” position, claiming that Bitcoin has the “largest established network effect” and is “more than five times larger than the number two crypto.”

This post credited to cointelegraph Image source: Cointelegraph 

Major Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange OKEx will delist over 50 trading pairs with weak performance, according to an announcement published Oct. 25.

As per the announcement, at 6:00 am Oct. 31, 2018 CET, the exchange will halt the trading of a swathe of pairs that they cite as having weak liquidity and trading volume. The exchange warned users that they should cancel their orders of the affected pairs from the platform.

OKEx also made a point of noting that it will delist only the indicated trading pairs, but not the tokens themselves.

Andy Cheung, Head of Operations at OKEx, called the move “housekeeping” in a tweet today, Oct. 27, saying about OKEx and other top exchanges: “As leaders, we are responsible for promoting a robust ecosystem […] We need to take action on those underperforming tokens now.”

In a tweet announcing the delisting yesterday, Cheung also noted:

“Getting listed is not final. Maintaining a good performance is the key to success.”

Earlier this month, OKEx announced the listings of four stablecoins at once – TrueUSD (TUSD), USD Coin (USDC), Gemini Dollar (GUSD), and Paxos Standard Token (PAX).

Founded in 2014, OKEx is at press time the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange in terms of adjusted trading volume, seeing around $402.5 million in trades over the past 24 hours.

This post credited to Cointelegraph  Image source: Cointelegraph 

Bloomberg’s analysts have joined the ranks of experts who consider that Bitcoin (BTC)’s low volatility levels recently signal the coin is finding a bottom, according to an analysis published Oct. 24.

Data analyzed by Bloomberg reveals that in October, BTC had only one day of price swings of (+/-) 5 percent or more; as compared with nine days in January and February, seven in March, and five in July.

Days with Bitcoin price moves of (+/-) 5 percent or above. Source: Bloomberg

Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Mike McGlone is quoted as saying that the markedly low volatility levels are “a sign of speculation leaving the market and eventually a bottoming process.”

Notably, diminished price swings have coincided with a significant devaluation of the coin over the course of an unflagging bear market: as of press time, Bitcoin is trading at $6,476, down almost 52 percent from around $13,350 Jan. 1.

A parallel Bloomberg article has today contrasted Bitcoin’s 2018 “listless” stability with the apparently “wild” price fluctuations of tech stocks of late, which it quips are “the new Bitcoin.” According to Bloomberg data, “the spread between the 10-day volatility of the NYSE FANG+ Index” and Bitcoin has hit “a record high of 46 percentage points.”

Bloomberg’s analysts gave a positive perspective on Bitcoin’s rangebound trading patterns, with McGlone noting that “high volatility is a major factor lessening most cryptocurrency use cases for anything other than speculation.”

Charlie Morris, multi-asset head at London-based Atlantic House Fund Management, concurred that the stats simply suggest “the [crypto] market is calm and in balance,” adding:

“Given this bear market is now 10 months old and is getting tired, I’d be inclined to be bullish for the next major move.”

CEO of crypto app Plutus, Danial Daychopan, observed to Bloomberg that “the cost of the emotional traders has been washed away by the recent crash, and with it a lot of the volatility.” Low trading volumes appear to tally with Daychopan’s observation that the trading euphoria has tapered off in recent months.

Earlier this month, Spencer Bogart, an expert from crypto and blockchain venture firm Blockchain Capital concurred that Bitcoin is showing strong signs of “bottoming,” anticipating a “future crypto bonfire when we have the next bull market.”

On the basis of his technical analysis this June, futures broker Bill Baruch made a similar point, remarking that “a bottom is a process not a price. Now that [BTC’s] price and volatility are back down to earth, this bottoming process can begin.”

This post credited to Cointelegraph  Image source: Cointelegraph

Cayman Island-based fintech startup Caspian has completed an eight-figure ICO ahead of schedule.

Founded earlier this year, Caspian ties together the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in a single user interface. The full-stack crypto asset management platform also offers compliance, algorithms, portfolio management, risk, and reporting. Its co-founders David Wills and Robert Dykes plan to channel 40 percent of the raised $19.5 million towards research and development.

The other 25 and 15 percent would go towards sales & marketing and application support, respectively. The founders have also allocated a considerable sum towards building new partnerships, managing accounts and legal, and miscellaneous administration costs.

“Selling out the crowd sale is a huge milestone in the growth of our company and our journey to build the first institutional grade full-stack crypto trading and risk management platform for professional traders and investors,” Willis said of the platform, now production-ready. “Caspian is a critical tool to assist the rapidly growing number of financial institutions seeking to trade cryptocurrencies.”

The news arrives at a time when a majority of ICO rounds have failed to raise capitals for their blockchain projects. The bearish mood of the crypto market has further made it difficult for projects to attract funds. Caspian nevertheless has managed to strike the right chords among investors for plenty of reasons.

Clients and Partners

Caspian is serving to the need for tools that could simplify crypto trading for an always-rising influx of investors. The platform explicitly targets institutional grade users, including crypto trading companies and hedge funds.

Caspian claims to have 170 customers waiting to sign up on its platform. The company has already added 15 names to its onboarding process, including Lykke, Bletchley Park, and ex-Point 72 manager Travis Kling’s Ikigai Asset Management. Caspian has also added 15 global institutions, including Techemy, Blockstars, OSL, and Galaxy Digital, which are live and trading on its platform.

US-based crypto exchanges Coinbase and Gemini have also entered a strategic partnership with Caspian, which will enable them to offer its sophisticated trading and portfolio management functionalities to their customers. Hong Kong-based p2p crypto exchange BitMEX has also integrated Caspian for the same services.

Notable crypto figures like Mike Novogratz, Mona El Isa, and Ari Paul have also joined the Cayman Islands startup as advisors.

“Cryptocurrencies will play an increasingly big role with institutional players, yet to date, the sophisticated trading and portfolio management tools have not been available for this asset class,” Mona predicted. “It is exciting to see Caspian fill this gap with high-quality crypto-tools.”

This post credited to ccn Image from Shutterstock.

Crypto exchange Coinbase is shutting down its institutional-investor focused index fund product, a spokesperson told CoinDesk.

The spokesperson told CoinDesk that the Coinbase Index Fund – first launched earlier this year – will be formally closed by the end of the month, with customers instead directed to the recently-announced Coinbase Bundle product instead. The news was first reported Thursday by The Block.

The spokesperson said:

“After assessing demand from retail, accredited and institutional investors, Coinbase has decided to shut down Coinbase Index Fund. We will focus on providing diversified exposure to all investors through Coinbase Bundle.”

Unlike the index fund, the bundle is open to all Coinbase customers, with no accreditation required. The minimum required investment is only $25 as well, compared to $250,000 for the fund.

“We’ve decided to refocus the resources devoted to managing the Coinbase Index Fund to other parts of the business,” the spokesperson concluded.

The Coinbase Index Fund was first announced in March, though it did not go live until mid-June, when product lead Rueben Bramanathan wrote that institutional investors could invest anywhere from $250,000 to $20 million into the product.

At launch, the fund exposed U.S.-based investors to bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, ethereum classic and litecoin, which were weighted by market capitalization.

Coinbase also announced its intention to add further assets to the fund should they be listed on any of its trading platforms as well.

The confirmation comes a day after Coinbase announced it was adding the 0x Protocol token (ZRX) to its professional trading platform, Coinbase Pro. The exchange only allowed deposits of the token until Friday morning, and launched full trading later in the day.

That being said, retail investors cannot yet access or trade ZRX through coinbase.com or its mobile apps. Coinbase said Thursday that the token would be added to these platforms at some future point.

This post credited to coindesk Image via Token Summit/YouTube 

As of Thursday, Sept. 25, the bitcoin price has climbed about 3 percent, briefly crossing the $6,700 level and extending toward $6,750 at one point in the early evening.

While this movement has made plenty of cryptocurrency  traders and investors happy in the short-term, a recent analysis of spending patterns relating to some of the earliest blocks of bitcoin has revealed that a very early miner has been taking advantage of the last several years’ long-term upward trajectory to slowly cash out tens of thousands of coins since Dec. 2016.

A recent tweet from a cryptocurrency expert, Blockchain data analyst Antoine Le Calvez, has revealed that a mysterious bitcoin miner has managed to send approximately 30,000 BTC cryptocurrency exchanges between Dec. 2016, and Jan. 2018, potentially cashing them out for a mammoth payday.

Mystery Miner Cashes In

According to Le Calvez, the mysterious bitcoin miner has been smart enough to cash in on their youngest blocks of bitcoin to not reveal the full extent of their mining period.

It would seem that, at the latest, the mining started somewhere around Dec. 2009, back when the value of BTC wasn’t much above $0, still wasn’t anywhere near reaching dollar parity, and the flagship cryptocurrency could be profitably mined with a standard-issue CPU. The first Bitcoin Pizza Day, you will remember, did not occur until 2010.

Furthermore, the researcher believes that the mystery miner had mined for at least seven months. Through this time, he managed to acquire more than 30,000 BTC since block rewards were high and miners were few.

He speculates that the miner could have even commenced mining operations earlier than Dec. 2009 since, recognizing that spending older coins is more likely to attract attention, he desires to conceal his sell-off. For some, this may raise questions, such as whether the mystery wallet owner is not Satoshi Nakamoto himself, although the researcher seems to think otherwise.

This post is credited to ccn Featured Image from Shutterstock

It’s Saturday, which means nearly everyone is settled in for a relaxing weekend free from the turmoils of crunching numbers. Because Bitcoin is important and everyone uses electricity, here are a bunch of numbers to throw those people off.

I didn’t major in math so here goes nothing. First, here’s a dose of sobering perspective: Back when people talked to each other for entertainment, given the lack of iPhone chargers in the mid-1800s, people would look into the distance and say something to the effect of “There’s gold in them there hills,” and they actually dug gold out of the dirt all day long. That takes a lot of energy, right?

Cut back to today, mining still exists, but in two contexts. The first is actually sifting through the earth looking for the shiny yellow stuff, i.e. gold. The other is Bitcoinmining, which has some skeptics red-faced and sputtering about the amount of electricity it takes to make a blockchain. Those haters should probably calm down.

Here’s why: Bitcoin mining costs $4.3 billion dollars. That’s not exactly chump change, but compared to the $87.3 billion iceberg that sank the Titanic (AKA gold mining), there’s a sizable difference to be considered. Bitcoin and physical gold both have value, but their respective contexts are the decisive factor here. Because Bitcoin is decentralized in its approach and has no structure for measuring power usage, the millions of miners building blockchains don’t care how much power is consumed to do their job.

However, there are two ways in which power can be estimated per Panda Analytics Inc. investor Vladimir Jelisavcic’s calculations.

Number One: The Top-Down Approach

Generally, it takes 10 minutes to confirm the block transaction, and, according to LongHash.com, for every 12.5 BTC mined per newly created block, miners earn $562,500 per megawatt hour (MWh). The price of electricity is subjective, but if one MWh costs $100 and 30 percent of the total earnings is used to buy electricity, the end result is almost 1,700 MWh for powering the Bitcoin chain.

Number Two: Bottoms Up!

When Bitcoin is created, a function called hashing computes the Bitcoin code. The faster the hash rate, the faster new blocks can be discovered and rewards reaped. The software being used affects the rate at which hashing operates. For example, the Antiminer S9 looks like a kooky air conditioner but is capable of performing 14.5 terahashes per second.

Related: Bitcoin Hash Rate Continues To Increase, Reaches 61.8 EH/s

That’s 14.5 trillion hashing operations every second. If the total Bitcoin network facilitates 50 billion trillion hashes per second (this sounds made up, I know), at least 3.45 million S9 units are necessary to support the blockchain. We’re left with 7,000 MWh and a total energy cost of 4,344 MWh, or $4.3 billion.

So what the deal with gold? Well, according to the world’s largest gold mining company, Barrick Gold Corporation, energy costs are $288 million per year. Based on the corporation’s annual report, gold production costs $794 per ounce. Last year, the company mined 5.3 million ounces—$4.2 billion worth of the precious metal. Net earnings increased drastically from $-2.9 billion in 2014 to $1.4 billion in 2017.

Global Gold Mining

Gold is mined literally everywhere, save for Antarctica. So if the global average for gold mined every year is 88 million ounces, according to the World Gold Council, it’s fair to say gold production costs $70 billion every year. Newly discovered mines are set for excavation starting in 2021 and expected to be sustained by 2023, meaning millions in additional gold reserves and millions more in production costs.

Related: Bitcoin Hash Rate Rapidly Growing Despite Price

Barrick employees own 1.5 million shares of the company, so they have a fair interest in the gold hedge. Investing in Bitcoin, however, is too volatile for investors to risk their treasure chests on, so they’re content for the moment to stick to their laurels. In an interview with Forbes, financial author John Wasik advises investing no more than 10 percent of one’s total portfolio until cryptocurrency continues to establish itself as a regulated entity.

There’s no question that Bitcoin mining energy is the lesser of two evils. It’s more a problem of tangibility (and gold is pretty). But as cryptocurrency leaders continue to prove by example, there is a middle ground closing in on Bitcoin investing. The solution presented is regulation in technology that has its eye on the gold.

This post credited to cryptoslate  Image source: Unsplash

Binance is set to unveil a fiat currency exchange that will be based in Singapore. This was revealed by CEO Changpeng Zhao over the weekend while speaking at the Cumberland Summit, a blockchain event in Singapore. Zhao further revealed that the new exchange is currently under an invitation-only beta testing phase.

After making the announcement during his speech on September 15, Zhao also posted it on his twitter account where he also revealed that it will begin beta testing on September 18, 2018.

CZ Binance

@cz_binance

I just slipped that we will begin Singapore fiat exchange live money closed beta testing on Sept 18th, in 3 days. Invitation only first. Exciting!

Justin Chow@Justinchow08

Day 2: @JamesRadecki32 starting off breakout #2 with @tylerwinklevoss and @cz_binance on crypto exchanges. @GeminiDotCom @tylerwinklevoss @ApoloOhno @arrington @TusharJain_ @MatthewRoszak @missbitcoin_mai #cumberlandsummit #crypto #bitcoin

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Fiat Exchanges and Singapore

Thus far, very few details have been provided about the operational framework of the new fiat exchange, but there is speculation that it will likely offer Singapore dollar trading pairs. Fiat to fiat exchanges are still a relative novelty in the crypto world, and they remain largely untested in the “wild”. From a Binance point of view, opening a fiat exchange improves its users’ experience by enabling them to seamlessly convert across several fiat currencies and then make transactions directly from the exchange account using the new currency. Even more significantly, fiat to fiat exchanges generally offer users interbank exchange rates as against retail exchange rates, which means that users get more for their money.

Binance’s choice of Singapore for this experiment is not without precedent, as over the past few years Singapore has become one of the global crypto industry’s major hubs alongside South Korea, Hong Kong, Malta and the USA. The island state has moved toward the epicentre of global crypto innovation in part because of its relatively relaxed regulatory environment and its booming economy, often described as one of the “Asian Tigers”.

Singaporean authorities do not regulate crypto exchanges because crypto is not recognised as legal tender in the country, but exchanges are nonetheless required to abide by AML and CFT regulations.

Binance Continues Expanding

Often described as the world’s largest crypto exchange by volume, Binance has enjoyed a red letter year despite prevailing crypto market conditions. Following a blanket ban on crypto trading in China, the company has embarked on an aggressive global expansion drive, opening up in Malta, Jersey, South Korea, Uganda and Liechtenstein.

The company recently outlined its strategy for expanding across Africa, which some see as the crypto world’s last frontier with potential for unparalleled adoption due to its relatively underdeveloped financial systems. With a daily trading volume that regularly approaches $1 billion, the exchange boasts of market-leading liquidity for a large number of trading pairs.


This post credited to ccn Featured image from Shutterstock.