safety first

Your daily newsletter for August 13, 2018
Safe and sound
"The coward only threatens when he is safe."
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Safely back at the start of the week
Welcome back! How was your weekend? I hope you had a good one and you're safely back to work on a Monday 😛 

We received a few requests to get the newsletter sent slightly earlier to make the commute/lunch/dinner time around the world, so we're going to bring forward the timing of the newsletter as much as possible going forward. Thanks for your feedback, we're listening ❤️
Still a safe haven?
During the weekend, BTC saw a drop to ~$6,130 levels on Friday before rebounding slightly to about ~$6,400 levels where it remained for the rest of the weekend.

BTC seems to be continuing on its downward trajectory, trading well below the 50 ($7,051),100 ($7,351) and 200 ($7,745) MA lines and heading towards testing the key support level of $6,000 – a big test 💯 for BTC that it has historically overcome several times in 2018.

It also seems that BTC is trading within a downward wedge that if it remains in, would likely cause bearish forces to persist and keep the market on its downward trajectory 👇

No rest for the weary
The recent year has been especially cruel to ETH, down ~77.2% from its year-to-date high of ~$1,404 back in Jan to the current ~$318. Compare to this to BTC, whose year-to-date high of ~$17,527 back in Jan saw a decrease to its current ~$6,435 constituting a ~63.3% drop; there is an apparent difference in the price decrease.

One of the value propositions of ETH lies in its use for ICO contributions 💰  2018 saw reduced returns from ICOs, dampening investor confidence, perhaps leading to the drop in ICO demand (together with regulations). ICO projects have also been increasingly liquidating their ETHs of late, further suppressing the price of ETH: According to sources such as SANbase*, in just the past month, ICOs have sold nearly 100,000 ETH 😮

Well, and, the overall bear market could also be causing investors to shift assets into the relatively "safer" BTC.

*Disclaimer on the methodology: SANbase assumes "ETH spent" from the outgoing transactions from project wallets into exchanges. However, these outgoing transactions may not always translate to the projects actually liquidating the ETH.
Moving to safety
Volume on Turkish crypto-exchanges such as Paribu, Btcturk and Koinim surged by more than 100% over a 24-hour window last Friday 🚀, whilst the Turkish-lira hit an all time low against the greenback.

This came shortly after Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan told his citizens to “sell their gold and U.S. dollars” to support the country’s currency (Lira) which plunged after U.S. President Donald Trump escalated their trade feud, and doubled metal import tariffs. With the influx into BTC instead, guess that didn't quite work out the way he wanted 😏

Tethered on
Over the weekend, on Aug 11, Tether (USDT) which is pegged to the U.S. dollar at a 1:1 rate, issued new tokens amounting to $50 million. Could this have led to the slight bounce over the weekend? 🙈 🙉 🙊

Tether has come under scrutiny in the past, as some have speculated using algorithms that analyze blockchain data, that Tether’s USDT was used “to provide price support and manipulate cryptocurrency prices” during market downturns (See: "Is Bitcoin Really Un-Tethered?" - John M.Griffin & Amin Shams, 2018)

And who do you call?
The bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), apparently receives approximately 1,500 Suspicious Activity Reports (SAR) regarding cryptocurrencies each month. These reports, becoming increasingly frequent, are mostly sent in by financial institutions and cryptocurrency exchanges.

FinCEN’s director, Kenneth A. Blanco, stated that while “innovation in financial services can be a great thing… we also must be cognizant that financial crime evolves right along with it, or indeed sometimes because of it, creating opportunities for criminals and bad actors, including terrorists and rogue states.” 👻🔫

Hands off
  • Jeffrey Tucker, economist and editorial director for American Institute for Economic Research, turned crypto defender, tells governments to leave crypto alone to create real choice in terms of currencies for people around the world 🙌 👏
  • Corey Fields, a Bitcoin core dev, was apparently responsible for finding the SIGHASH_BUG in Bitcoin Cash 😎
  • BitConneeeeeect will be delisted from its last exchange on September 10.
  • David Marcus at Facebook will step down from the board of Coinbase to reduce the possibility of an "appearance" of conflict of interest 😕
Poll of the Day
In your opinion, how much is BTC still considered a safe haven today? 🌤
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Are you holding BTC? Are you rooting for other cryptocurrencies? Tell me!
(That BTC dominance today, tho...)
What you said
Likelihood that decentralized exchanges will be the future, you guys thought: 6.6 😌

The biggest hurdle cited was difficulty of use, with the user experience being an issue (57%), followed by fundamental issues such as front running (21%), transaction speed (14%) and everything else, including it being hard to understand.

Half of our respondents have used a decentralized exchange before (and this is mostly self-selecting, of course), mainly because a coin they wanted to buy was listed on the decentralized exchange first. On the other hand, poor liquidity was cited another issue, as well as it being hard to use/learn (and not looking trustworthy 😕).

Of course there were those who believe it is the future, and the best medium invented in financial sector. Everyone else who didn't try it... didn't have enough time or were too lazy 😆

Half of you thought we should talk to governments, but nobody knew what we should talk about. Looks like it's still not the right time! 🤣

See you tomorrow!
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