Bitcoin vs Bitcoin Cash, Why Not Both: Ronnie Moas

The relationship between Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash has been rocky since before the latter’s inception. So much so that there is vehement support of both, opposed on many issues.

However, when it comes to an investment standpoint, Standpoint Research’s Ronnie Moas puts all that aside. The famed stock picker strongly advises anyone in the digital currency investment game to diversify and to invest in more than just Bitcoin.

Eggs in a basket

The war that is fought between the original Bitcoiners and the Bitcoin Cashers is fierce. They each have their reasons for pledging support, but those reasons only resonate when it comes to the function of the digital coins.

When it comes to investing, there is no need to be so precious about a choice. People should be diversifying, says Ronnie Moas.

“Do not put all your crypto money into Bitcoin,” Moas said plainly in an exclusive interview with Cointelegraph. “You must diversify across at least a dozen of the more than 1,000 names out there, with a focus on the names in the top 50.”

It really sounds like basic advice, but it is advice that not many are taking. Moas himself is such a believer in the notion of diversification that he counts Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin as a single entity when calculating a target value.

“When I calculate the Bitcoin target price I am adding Bitcoin Gold and Bitcoin Cash to the Bitcoin price. In other words, if Bitcoin market capitalization drops by 50 bln dollars tomorrow it would not be a concern of mine if Bitcoin Cash jumped by that same amount,” Moas added, showing the value in diversification.

“This is a scenario that played out a couple of weeks ago when Bitcoin dropped by 20 percent and that decline was more than offset by a 100 percent move in Bitcoin Cash.”

Bitcoin might not always be King

The general thinking is that Bitcoin is almost unstoppable, and uncatchable at the top of the crypto pile. However, it is foolish to maintain that view without hedging a few bets.

“It’s Economics 101,” Moas continued in his chat to Cointelegraph “Don’t put your eggs in one basket. For example, Samsung can knock Apple over with one move. I really believe in diversification, as they say on Wall Street: ‘Don’t get greedy… Pigs get fat; Hogs get slaughtered.”

“If Bitcoin goes down then make your money elsewhere, put in a few good hedges. Even if Bitcoin goes higher, it won’t even be the best performer in the top 20. Looking at Coinmarketcap, you will see coins that are up 40 percent, outshining Bitcoin by miles. If you protect yourself against a Bitcoin collapse, then suddenly you also have a vested interest in the other 20 percent.”

Deep Web Roundup: Alphabay Suspect Dies, Monero Climbs, and 126m Verge Lost

Deep Web Roundup

Featured

The days of darknet markets driving bitcoin are long gone, but even for those with no compunction to visit the deep web, its activity is worth monitoring. From anonymous coins to multi-sig wallets, the darknet often leads the way when it comes to adopting tech – especially when that tech can be used to enhance privacy. What happens on the deep web permeates the clearnet and has real-life ramifications.

See also: Darknet Markets Are Back – But With the Blockchain Bloated Who’s Buying?

DDoS Ceasefire Holds Up

Since news.Bitcoin.com last reported on the status of the darknet’s primary markets, the DDoS-ing cessation has largely held up. Major sites such as Dream, Point, and Wall Street Market have all enjoyed significant uptime. Aero hasn’t fared so well, not only in the DDoS stakes, but also in terms of customer satisfaction.

Widespread reports of withdrawals remaining unprocessed have been filed, with a market admin responding: “Support has little to no availability due to changes we were making, everything will be caught up on as soon as possible. This will be before the weekend. Missing withdrawals are beginning to process automatically, the block chain is simply not synced due to the server downtime. Please be patient.”

Bitcoinocracy is a free and decentralized way to measure the Bitcoin community's stance on a given proposition. Check vote.Bitcoin.com.In the past week, another new market, Omega, has launched, though as always caution is advised when visiting untested sites. P2P marketplace Openbazaar keeps going from strength to strength, and seems set to claim a large slice of the DNM trade in the months to come. For anyone curious as to what the hell has been going on in the world of darknet markets this year, a succinct tl;dr can be found here.

Another Week, Another Tor Browser Update

As privacy-enhancing free software goes, Tor is excellent but it’s certainly not foolproof. Deep Web Roundup: Alphabay Suspect Dies, Monero Climbs, and Coinpouch Lose 126m VergeWith new vulnerabilities regularly discovered, it’s vital that users keep their browser updated. The splendidly named TorMoil is the latest vuln to have emerged, one which threatens to expose the IP of Mac and Linux users. It’s since been patched, but deep web users seeking to prevent such mishaps should consider properly configuring a VPN to connect to Tor. As recently reported by news.Bitcoin.com, AirVPN now accepts bitcoin cash plus a bunch of other cryptocurrencies, and there are plenty of other providers that also smile kindly on crypto.

Alphabay Claims More Victims

Alphabay has been down since July, but the repercussions from the bust continue. Former Alphabay mod “Trappy” aka Ronald L. Wheeler III, a 24-year-old from Illinois, has been charged with access fraud. “By acting as a spokesperson for the criminal element on AlphaBay, he served to further the agendas of those who chose to defy our laws and victimize our communities,” states a U.S. attorney.

Deep Web Roundup: Alphabay Suspect Dies, Monero Climbs, and Coinpouch Lose 126m Verge
Peterthegreat.

Emulating Alphabay mastermind Alexandre Cazes, who hung himself in a Thai prison cell in July, suspected fentanyl vendor Theodore Vitaliy Khleborod has followed suit. The South Carolina man, who went by the name “Peterthegreat” on Alphabay, was found dead on November 6. While most people would struggle to defend selling fentanyl, which has been linked to a spate of deaths in the U.S., it’s evident that the threat of lifelong incarceration and the resultant suicides it induces is not the answer. There are no winners in this sorry tale.

Should Have Used Monero

After Alphabay’s dismantling, when it emerged that investigators could only quantify an “unknown amount of Monero” a new meme was born – Should Have Used Monero. This was further heightened after a number of arrests was achieved by following bitcoin transactions through the blockchain. That meme may require a light edit however from SHUM to SHHM – Should Have Hodled Monero. XMR is one of the few altcoins to have largely kept pace – and often exceeded – bitcoin’s meteoric rise this year. It’s currently sitting at $150 a coin and $200 looks well within its reach.

Deep Web Roundup: Alphabay Suspect Dies, Monero Climbs, and Coinpouch Lose 126m Verge

Coinpouch Hacked, Millions of XVG Missing

In the last 24 hours, little-known iOS blockchain wallet app Coinpouch has announced a hack. All of the Verge coins it was sitting on, believed to number around 126 million, are missing. In a statement, Coinpouch explained:

It is very important to note that it was most likely a node that was setup to process Verge as connected to Coinpouch that was hacked. This does not mean Verge was hacked nor does it mean Coinpouch was hacked.

In other words, they have no idea.

Deep Web Roundup: Alphabay Suspect Dies, Monero Climbs, and Coinpouch Lose 126m Verge
A mantra that every cryptocurrency holder would do well to heed.

While it would be stretching the truth to say that Verge sees widespread use on the deep web, it was developed with the Tor browser in mind. The Tor Android wallet provides complete mobile privacy, which is unique among privacy coins. Affected Coinpouch users are understandably irate. It’s a bad world out there on the web. Keep your loved ones close and your private keys closer.

Do you think deep web developments have any effect on the price of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Tor.


Bitcoinocracy is a free and decentralized way to measure the Bitcoin community’s stance on a given proposition. Check vote.Bitcoin.com.

State Bank of India Plans to Pilot Test Blockchain-based Smart Contracts

The State Bank of India (SBI) plans to beta test a Blockchain-based smart contracts system that was developed by the BankChain consortium in December 2017. The consortium, which was launched in February, is composed of 27 banks that aim to develop Blockchain solutions for the banking industry in the country.

According to SBI’s head of innovation, Sudin Baraokar, the smart contracts will be tested for “simple things” like nondisclosure agreements. He added that majority of their internal processes can be accomplished using the technology.

“A lot of internal processes can be contracted. We do a lot of IT procurement, a lot of it can be implemented using Blockchain.”

SBI’s planned innovation center and BankChain initiatives

According to Baraokar, the state bank also plans to establish an innovation hub in Mumbai. The center will be used to conduct research and development (R&D) on new technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and Blockchain technology. The facility is also designed to host hackathons and incubate startups. The proposed center is currently in the design phase and it is scheduled to be launched in mid-2018.

Meanwhile, the BankChain consortium has launched the know your customer (KYC) platform dubbed ClearChain in May 2017. The platform is intended to enable banks to share data of their customers among their members. Among the information that can be shared are data on wire transfers and investigatory reports, including Suspicious Activity Reports (SAR).

The BankChain consortium was established in February 2017. SBI was the first member of the group. So far, the organization already has 22 Indian banks including DCB Bank, Axis Bank, and ICICI Bank, as well as five Middle East-based banks as members.

Market Analysis Report (21 Nov 2017)

MVIS-CryptoCompare Index

The MVIS CryptoCompare Digital Assets 10 Index has closed at 4,343.47 with a gain of 1.12% for the day.

See live index here

Market Update

INTRO

At the time of writing, the Bitcoin price is sitting at $8,049, representing a gain of 4% in the last 24 hours. With more than $560 M worth of BTC were exchanged in the BTC/USD market, representing a 24.5% share of daily volume, second to the JPY at 58%.

BTC IMG

Currently sitting at $357.22, the Ethereum price has dropped 1% in the last 24 hours. Over $170M worth of Ether were exchanged in the past 24 hours on the ETH/USD pair which has a 28% market share of the daily trading volume.

ETH IMG

See live charts here and here

Breaking: Tether Allegedly Hacked For $30 Mln

According to a post on its website, Tether has experienced a substantial hacking event, with a loss of over $30 mln from the Tether Treasury account. The loss was discovered when the tokens were sent to an unauthorized Bitcoin address. According to the post, Tether is taking all possible action to prevent further disruption, saying:

“Yesterday, we discovered that funds were improperly removed from the Tether treasury wallet through malicious action by an external attacker. Tether integrators must take immediate action, as discussed below, to prevent further ecosystem disruption.”

The site also says that all Tether wallet services have been suspended pending a thorough investigation of the cause of the hack. Further, Tether is releasing a new version of Omni Core via hard fork in order to prevent the attacker from moving funds into any other wallet. Tether is encouraging all users to immediately upgrade their Omni Core to the new, protected version. Tether will continue pursuing ways to reclaim the coins stranded by the hack.

The company assured its users that Tether issuances have not been impacted by the hack and that all functionality and tokens are backed by assets as normal. According to the post:

“…all Tether tokens remain fully backed by assets in the Tether reserve. The only tokens that will not be redeemed are the ones that were stolen from Tether treasury yesterday. Those tokens will be returned to treasury once the Omni Layer protocol enhancements are in place.”

Other struggles, concerns

These events come at a difficult time for Tether, as it has recently been under fire by some community members for its transparency policies.  Twitter has already provided a series of analyses, many of which are not positive. For example:

 

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Makes Off with $375k of ICO Funds

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

News

Confido, an ICO startup whose name means “I trust”, has done a bunk with 1,235 ETH. The company was supposed to have been creating a trustless payment system using smart contracts. Instead, it was the project’s founders who have proven themselves trustless after deleting all their accounts and going dark. The $375,000 exit scam highlights the risks that are inherent to the still largely unregulated ICO market.

See also: Cracks Appear as Critics Label Bitconnect a Ponzi Scheme

Trust Less, Question More

As a since-deleted Medium article published by Confido explained:

Confido takes away the trust barrier in exchanges involving cryptocurrencies, while also staying decentralised and trustless.

After protesting of “legal issues” over the weekend, however, the startup hastily scrubbed its online presence. Google still has a cached version of the site and a who.is enquiry pulls up the following information, citing a residential Berlin address:

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

Joost van Doorn is also the project’s founder and CEO supposedly. It is unlikely that the company information is correct, although the name might be, given that van Doorn has since deactivated his personal Facebook account along with Confido’s. The confido.io domain was registered with Namecheap, who accept payment in bitcoin.

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds
Joost shut up and take my money.

An FAQ on the company’s cached website poses such questions as “Why is the hard cap so low?”, to which they reply: We think the current ICO space is messed up; companies are raising millions without a fully working product or existing customers. We have talked with financial analysts and we simply don’t need more than $400,000 to develop and market our project.”

Irony Upon Ironies and Insult to Injury

The Confido contract address currently has a balance of 0 ether and just 676 CFD tokens, worth a total of $21. As word broke of the exit scam on November 19, the token’s value plummeted by 94%. It’s currently trading on Kucoin, Etherdelta, and Mercatox, though suffice to say there aren’t many buyers.

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

Google webcache also reveals a snapshot of the team’s now deleted Twitter, where the ironies continue to stack up:

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

The 4.5 million CFD the team refer to currently sit in this address. On 4chan’s /biz/ messageboard where traders gather to troll, shill, and occasionally dispense sound investment advice, there was an abundance of pink wojaks as the despair sank in, and it was a similar story on Reddit.

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

What Hope of a Happy Ending?

There remains a slim chance of a happy ending to this sorry story. Tokenlot, who had promoted the Confido sale on their site, reportedly issued the following information after the exit scam came to light:

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO FundsDays earlier, some of the /biz/ forum’s more astute users had posted warnings that the team behind Confido didn’t seem to exist, but were shot down with one sceptic jibing “You sold the future of online crypto commerce at 5 M market cap OP. You sold too early and you will have to live with that”.

In a thread on November 19, someone posted:

wait a second, is this real? I woke up not too long ago and I am down over $54K on my investment in CFD…I bought in with almost everything I had when it was .94 cents. What is happening? I am seeing rumors that the developers did an exit scam. Is this true? Does anyone know why their website is down? I’m not getting any responses from email or anything. I feel really f*****g sick. Can someone tell me please what is happening?

The Confido scam arrives the same day a survey revealed that 15% of institutional traders won’t go near ICOs until tighter regulation arrives. While the vast majority of initial coin offerings are conducted in good faith, all it takes is a few bad apples to ruin things for everyone.

Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Funds
The Confido team that never was.

As Confido were posting news of “legal troubles” which have been widely interpreted as the Trustless Payment Startup Confido Does a Runner with $375k of ICO Fundsfirst phase of their planned exit, one Twitter user highlighted the fact that Coinmarketcap is running a trio of ads for projects which are dubious at best and fraudulent at worst. Bitcy, Resonance, and Bitconnect all promise “guaranteed returns”, which should be an instant warning sign. As the Confido case shows, however, it doesn’t require unrealistic claims to hook investors: all it takes is a plausible sounding ICO with a modest hard cap.

Trustless indeed.

What do you think can be done to protect investors from ICO scams? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Twitter.


Bitcoinocracy is a free and decentralized way to measure the Bitcoin community’s stance on a given proposition. Check vote.Bitcoin.com.

Market Analysis Report (20 Nov 2017)

Coinbase Custody Targets $10 Billion in Institutional Funds for Bitcoin Investment

Last Thursday, Coinbase CEO, Brian Armstrong, officially introduced Coinbase Custody, a platform targeted at institutional investors. The new product is intended to be ultra-secure. According to Armstrong, Coinbase currently holds $9 billion in user funds in various cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin. Coinbase Custody is exclusively for institutional investors with at least $10 mln on deposit.

Armstrong further emphasized that the finance market currently has over $10 billion in institutional money that has been sitting on the sidelines. Coinbase believes these investors want to purchase digital currency but have been waiting for a safe way to buy and hold it. Armstrong wrote:

“Over 100 hedge funds have been created in the past year exclusively to trade digital currency. An even greater number of traditional institutional investors are starting to look at trading digital assets (including family offices, sovereign wealth funds, traditional hedge funds, and more). By some estimates there is $10B of institutional money waiting on the sidelines to invest in digital currency today.”

Read more here

European Central Bank Considering Bitcoin Regulation 

According to Reuters, the European Central Bank (ECB) is considering regulating the use of cryptocurrencies. Governing council member Ewald Nowotny commented:

“We’re asking ourselves if legislators or central banks should intervene, as happened in China where they banned (the use of cryptocurrencies) because they consider them fraudulent.”

Read more here

Ethereum Could Soon Launch Its First Casper Testnet

During a core developer meeting last week, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin said that not only is Casper ready to be tested, but that it could provide a security boost when testing code across clients.

And while Casper itself isn’t ready for widespread adoption, let alone integration on the main Ethereum chain, it might be the prime time to start testing it out, some suggested in the meeting. Developer Peter Szilagyi stated:

“If we realistically want to roll out Casper in whatever hard fork, then eventually people need to start implementing it.”

Read more here

Mark Karpeles Floats Token Sale to Revive Mt Gox

In a blog post published last week, Mark Karpeles detailed possible avenues for reviving Mt Gox, the once-dominant Japanese Bitcoin exchange that collapsed amid allegations of fraud and mismanagement in early 2014. Hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin were feared lost, though ultimately 202,000 BTC were retained as assets, under the custody of a trustee.

One possible avenue around the issue: reviving Mt Gox, with a price tag of $245 million. This could be accomplished either through a recapitalization by way of an equity sale or an ICO, according to Karpeles. He wrote:

“Launch an ICO to raise money to hypothetically revive MtGox. This sounds more challenging, both legally and because there is no guarantee of raising enough to revive MtGox. In case there is not enough raised it could still be locked to be distributed to creditors, which would be better than nothing.”

Read more here

Massive Hedge Fund AQR Incorporating Blockchain Technology

In another win for the adoption of Blockchain technology into the banking and finance world, top hedge fund AQR ($208 bln under management) has announced that it will begin investigating how to incorporate the nascent technology into its trading platforms.

The company hopes to use the technology to make its internal systems more efficient, since Blockchain allows for security without the increased hassles that traditional security means employ. Nevertheless, the company has only just begun to test the potential. According to AQR cofounder David Kabiller:

“How long [the technology] takes to get there and what becomes the standard is unclear, there’s a big entrenched infrastructure there, but there is potential for more efficiencies that can be gained by Blockchain.”

Hedge funds business and tech

Hedge funds have been on the cutting edge of embracing both Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies among institutional investors. The need for profit production for investors and high returns has driven the push for new fields of investment and efficiency. Recent reports indicate that more than 120 new hedge funds for cryptocurrencies have recently opened. Just last week, UK-based hedge fund Man Group announced they would get involved in Bitcoin trading following CME Group’s opening of their regulated Bitcoin futures market. This market opens for testing Monday, November 20.

Quebec Attracts Cryptocurrency Miners with Inexpensive Hydropower

Mining

Quebec is increasingly becoming a location of interest for bitcoin miners. The Canadian province offering inexpensive electricity and cold winters providing inexpensive cooling.

Also Read: Chinese Bitcoin Miners Explore Relocating Abroad Amid Fears of Crackdown

A Young Canadian Entrepreneur Told Local Media That Quebec Is Becoming a Hotspot for Mining

Quebec Attracts Cryptocurrency Miners With Inexpensive PowerMr. Bertrand runs approximately 50 ASICs in a warehouse on the outskirts of Montreal. Each unit consumes approximately 90¢ CAD (roughly 70¢ USD) daily, yet can produce a revenue of approximately $600 CAD ($470 USD) monthly. The inexpensive power costs are attributed to an abundance of hydropower in the province, which, Mr. Bertrand claims, is attracting the interest of major mining companies from China and Iceland.

Hydro-Quebec, a state-owned enterprise based in Montreal, manages the distribution of power throughout Quebec. It is estimated that more than 40 percent of Canada’s water resources are located in the province, resulting in Hydro-Quebec comprising the fourth largest producer of hydropower in the world. Although the average price of residential power in Quebec is 5.82¢ CAD (4.56¢ USD) per kilowatt-hour (kWh), Hydro-Quebec recently announced that it will introduce an ‘Industrial Revitalization Rate‘ from April 1st, 2018. Once in effect, the new rate will provide electricity to companies requiring “at least 500 [kilowatts] in additional demand” for 3.30¢ CAD (2.58¢ USD).

Quebec’s Inexpensive Power is Attracting Miners from China

A growing number of Chinese bitcoin miners have begun to explore alternative locations in which to base their operations, amid rising concerns that the Chinese central government may seek to extend its recent cryptocurrency crackdown to target bitcoin mining. Radio-Canada recently reported that “a dozen major Asian players in the cryptocurrency industry have contacted Hydro-Quebec, as they are looking for a place to install their huge computer centers.”

Eric Filion, Hydro-Quebec’s Vice President of Customers, has confirmed the report, stating “these are really big players who contact us… The Bell Center in Montreal consumes the equivalent of 5 megawatts of power. The players who contact us [consume] from 5 megawatts to several hundred megawatts of power.”

What do you make of reports that major mining companies have directly contacted Hydro-Quebec? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Hydro-Quebec.


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Overstock Announces Alaska as State Conducting Most Cryptocurrency Purchases

Overstock Announces Alaska as State Conducting Most Cryptocurrency Purchases

Economics

Overstock board member, Jonathan Johnson, has revealed the top five U.S. states that most frequently conduct purchases using cryptocurrency. Overstock became the first major retailer to accept bitcoin back in 2014, and now accepts roughly 50 different cryptocurrencies.

Also Read: Overstock.com’s Stock Shares Soar in Relation to Bitcoin

The Company Has Revealed Hawaii as Its Top State for Cryptocurrency Purchases

Overstock Announces Alaska as State Conducting Most Cryptocurrency PurchasesOverstock has revealed the five states that conduct the most purchases using cryptocurrencies. The states are Alaska, Delaware, Oregon, Wyoming, and Hawaii – which many have found surprising, considering that said states are not seen as fintech hubs. THe retailer made this determination by assessing the percentage of overall revenue in each state that was generated through cryptocurrency purchases.

In terms of absolute cryptocurrency revenues, the most populated states rank the highest, such as California, New York, Texas, and Florida. The company approximates that it processes $300,000 USD worth of cryptocurrency-based sales each month in total.

Overstock Began Accepting Bitcoin in January 2014

Overstock Announces Alaska as State Conducting Most Cryptocurrency PurchasesOverstock board member, Jonathan Johnson, described the motivations underscoring the company’s choice to become a leading commercial entity active within the cryptocurrency space. “We saw from the 2013 banking crisis in Cyprus that bitcoin was a good store of value and could act as a currency. We like the pro-freedom aspect of Bitcoin.”

Johnson described the cryptocurrency-purchasing demographic, stating that they “tend to be male and buy twice as much as those paying with regular currency.“ Johnson added that “people paying with cryptocurrency don’t buy anything drastically different from other customers.”

Overstock Has Been Very Active in the Cryptocurrency Space During 2017

Overstock Announces Alaska as State Conducting Most Cryptocurrency PurchasesIn September, it was announced that Tzero, a majority-owned subsidiary of Overstock, will launch a trading platform for Initial Coin Offerings that is compliant with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) legislation. The platform was able to achieve regulatory compliance by registering as an “Alternative Trading System’.

In August, Overstock became the first major U.S. retailer to accept bitcoin cash and several prominent altcoins via point-of-sale payment. The company revealed that it would be doing so in partnership with Shapeshift.io.

Are your surprised by the states identified as conducting the most purchases percentage-wise using cryptocurrency? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Imagse courtesy of Shutterstock, Wikipedia


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