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Your daily newsletter for February 11, 2019
The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach.
- Seneca
Good Monday morning, CMC army! Welcome back from your (hopefully rejuvenating) weekend. I know you've been missing me, so without further adieu, here is today's newsletter! 😀

Today in history (1953), the Walt Disney film "Peter Pan" premiered! 🎥

In today's newsletter, we will be covering a U.S. SEC commissioner's optimistic remarks on a BTC ETF approval, crypto exchange Bithumb Global launching an over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk for digital assets and CEO of ICE Jeff Sprecher expecting Bakkt to launch later in 2019

Please don't forget to answer the polls down below too! It's a great way for us to interact with you all and hear what you have to say. 💭 Happy reading! 📚

New lease 😀
Over the weekend, total market capitalization spiked early Friday from ~$111.6 billion to ~$122.1 billion where it remained for the rest of the weekend. This is likely due to a U.S. SEC commissioner's optimistic remarks on a BTC ETF approval (see below). 🗣️ 

Similarly, BTC experienced a sharp increase on Friday from ~$3,400 to ~$3,690, pushing it above its 21-day EMA line on the daily chart. RSI levels went from ~38 to ~55 too, indicative of some bullish momentum. Just as we anticipated, BTC is now trading in a new pattern! It is currently challenging its 50-day EMA line again after a failed breakout on Friday. On the weekly chart, the MACD line has just crossed to the upside of the signal line, a bullish indicator (convergence). 📈

Dangle that carrot 🥕
Robert J. Jackson Jr., a commissioner at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), believes that a Bitcoin ETF will eventually be approved. 😊

In a published interview by government-focused news source Roll Call, Jackson said that he believes that eventually "someone will satisfy the standards that we’ve [the SEC] laid out there". ⌚

To day, at least 10 Bitcoin ETF proposals have filed for SEC approval, but none have been approved as yet, with the SEC rejecting proposals from ProShares, Direxion and the Winklevoss twins. However, the SEC’s rejections have not deterred all from trying to make the ETF breakthrough. Just last month, VanEck and SolidX have refiled its Bitcoin ETF proposal.

In the grid 🤗
Crypto exchange Bithumb Global has launched an over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk for digital assets. The firm announced that the new Hong Kong-based venture, Ortus, is a “block deal, matchmaking service” for institutional clients and it currently has offices in the U.K., Hong Kong, Japan, Australia and Argentina. 💪

The firm said that clients will have to go through “strict” onboarding processes, including know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) documentation to get started.

Several crypto exchanges have launched OTC trading desks in recent months as well. Just last month, U.S.-based Bittrex launched an OTC desk supporting nearly 200 cryptocurrencies. In December 2018, Poloniex opened an OTC trading service for institutional clients with a minimum order size of $250,000. 🤑

Managing expectations 🤔
In a recent earnings call, the CEO of the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Jeff Sprecher said that he expects the firm’s digital asset platform, Bakkt, to launch later in 2019 and characterized it as a "moonshot bet". 

Stressing that the project’s infrastructure has already attracted a number of high-profile investors and partners, including Starbucks and Microsoft, Sprecher added that Bakkt exists independently from ICE and has its own offices, management team and infrastructure. 🙌

ICE's CFO, Scott Hill, forecasts that ICE's "investment in Bakkt will generate $20 million to $25 million of expense based upon the run rate in the first quarter" and stressed that Bakkt is more of a long-term project rather than a 2019-focused agenda. 🔮

Blockchain term of the day 🤓 - Pump & Dump

A form of securities fraud involving the artificial inflation of the price of a cryptocurrency with false and misleading positive statements in order to sell previously-cheaply purchased stock at a higher price.

Special announcement 📢 CoinMarketCap Webinar: "Global Crypto Trends"

On 13 Feb 12:00 EST, we will be hosting our first-ever CoinMarketCap webinar on "Global Crypto Trends", presented by PwC Fintech and Crypto Leader for Asia, Henri Arslanian! 😄

Tune in to better understand what individuals and companies around the world are planning to do with crypto and blockchain! 🤓 But first, don't forget to sign up here!

Other news 📰
  • Mauritius will be giving out licenses to crypto custodians as part of its plan to create a fintech hub “in and for” Africa as soon as March. ⚡
  • Canadian Watchdog says that it does not regulate the troubled crypto exchange QuadrigaCX, which currently has millions of dollars in digital assets and cash belonging to its users frozen on the encrypted laptop of its deceased founder. 🤯
  • New York-based research company Fundstrat Global Advisors has released its 2019 crypto outlook: the space will see incremental improvements that will purportedly support higher prices for cryptocurrencies. 🔮
Crypto calendar 📅

TBA     - ICE's Bakkt Bitcoin Daily Futures Contract updated launch timeline
TBA     - SEC's ruling on VanEck Bitcoin ETF application

Catch the CoinMarketCap team at these community events! 🤝

25-26 Feb   - Crypto Assets Conference (Frankfurt, Germany)
27-28 Feb   - Trescon Kuala Lumpur (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
4-8 Mar       - Hong Kong Blockchain Week 2019 (Hong Kong)
13-14 Mar   - Token2049 (Hong Kong)
Poll of the Day
On a scale of 1-10 (10 being maximum anticipation), how much are you looking forward to the launch of ICE's digital asset platform, Bakkt? 💭
Why do you say so? Share with me in the polls! 😆
What you said
How much do you agree with this statement: "A crypto index, (similar to the S&P500 for traditional finance but for crypto) would be useful for the crypo community"

The average vote was 7.7.  

"Why or why not?"

Will facilitate mass adoption of cryptocurrencies - I believe that it will only facilitate to a small extent. The index would however give people a better overview of the crypto space. 👍
As long as crypto prices are determined by derivative fake volume it is not a good idea. Let it reflect one-on-one trades on the blockchain and then we'll have a real price index based on reality not virtual manipulated reality of crypto prices. - Interesting thought, but volume on one-on-one trades on the blockchain can be manipulated too. 🤔
I see my buying on performance. I regularly check prices daily. - It would definitely be a nifty tool for ya. 🔨
Any type of metrics which give us a sense of how the crypto market doing from any credible source will always be welcome. - Agreed. 
In some unspoken way it would mean authenticating cryptography. - In my opinion, it would add some legitimacy to the space. 👌🏻
This collection of crypto is not ready to be intended to represent the overall composition of the economy. - The index should comprise of removable weighted parts, similar to the S&P500/ DJI etc. 🔩
As quality reference. - A quantifiable benchmarking of sorts. 💲 
it's not a bad idea, but i think that all cryptos are not same ... it will be difficult to get a real index - It would have to be weighted in some fashion. 🤔

"How will you be spending your weekend? Do you have anything interesting lined up?"

Hiking the Great Wall of China - The views! I'm jelly. 😲
Garden prep for spring Plus ecstatic dance Gathering. - Now that's a party! 💃🏻
Work out - Health is wealth! 💪
Rest and go out to take the fresh air. I work in an office and are locked and tense for many hours - Good idea, we weren't designed for the sedentary life. 🏃
Not really. Buy low? - Hope you got in before the weekend spike! 📈
Watching coinmarket 🙂 - Awww yeah (:
💇🏾‍♀️💅🏾👩🏾‍💻 - Relaxing!
Wee pint or 2 ! - Who are you kidding? 😂
Hanging around with my wife and newborn son. - Congratulations! You must be so proud. 💓
Gardening. - That's chill!

Thank you all for reading! Catch you back here again tomorrow for your daily dose of crypto news! 💙
See you again tomorrow!
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Be thankful 🙏🏻
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