Market Update Feb 19-25: Innovation and Infrastructure

 

International News

While cryptocurrencies struggle to maintain positive momentum it’s important not to miss the bigger picture.  Companies are taking notice of blockchain innovations, even noted by Russian President Vladmir Putin late last week in a blockchain related meeting with head banking officials,

 

 “we have everything […] oil, gas, coal, metals of all kinds […] gold, platinum, diamonds, everything! 

“The Stone Age did not end due to the lack of stones, but because new technologies appeared.”

 

Putin then goes on to mentions that the countries who are late to adopt this technology or refuse to do so quickly become dependent others.  He goes on to mention:

 

“We need to take the maximum advantage of these factors […] to guarantee this progress into the future.”

 

Russia’s neighbor, China, has found itself in the blockchain news circuit yet again despite it’s anti-cryptocurrency status.  First, the Bank of China, was mentioned in a patent relating to a “blockchain scaling solution” with the purpose of improving data transfer, integrity, and storage.  This is the second week in a row China has been referenced in a blockchain patent, as fellow Chinese tech giant, Lenovo, filed for a blockchain-based patent on document authentication last week.  Also in Chinese news, the mega-scale Bitcoin operation, Bitmain, announced they raked in close to $4 Billion in profits from operations in 2017.  Bitmain is the largest Chinese mining company and now boasts profits that rival Wall Street darling Nvidia!

 

Now it wouldn’t be an international news cycle if we didn’t have some negative crypto headlines to bring you. This week is brought to by our friends to the north in Canada.  Late last week Canadien bank, Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD), announced it will ban all credit card purchases related to cryptocurrencies for their customers.  A surprise move out of a crypto-friendly country, but don’t expect this to create any panic in the market as investors begin to look past the FUD towards the green days of March.

 

US News

The US cryptosphere was buzzing this past week as the popular trading app Robinhood launched it’s much awaited cryptocurrency platform in five states! Not to be outdone, legacy crypto trading company, Coinbase, announced that it will be integrating SegWit into it’s GDAX platform.  Without diving too much into the technical details, Segwit integration will allow for a more seamless user experience for Coinbase traders by reducing the size of Bitcoin transactions thus improving the overall capacity of the Bitcoin network and reducing transaction fees.

On the legislative front, Arizona became the first state to pass bills allowing tax payments in the form of cryptocurrency. Rumors are circling the Georgia and Wyoming state capitals as these states seriously contemplate adding similar legislation.  Wording from the Arizona bill can be seen below:

 

“The commissioner shall accept as valid payment for taxes and license fees any cryptocurrency,

including but not limited to Bitcoin, that uses an electronic peer-to-peer system.”

 

Arizona State Representative won the hearts of crypto enthusiasts with the following statement on the bill,

 

“We are sending a signal to everyone in the United States, and possibly throughout the world,

hat Arizona is going to be the place to be for Blockchain and digital currency technology in the future,” 

 

We weren’t sure which headline got us more excited, the Arizona bitcoin tax acceptance or this one from Bank of America… In a SEC filing last week, Wall Street heavyweight, Bank of America, cited that cryptocurrencies are a threat to profit margin and user adoption of their native products.  Bank of America, now terrified that it will have to spend money to innovate is starting to soften their public crypto tone as seen in this statement to investors,

 

“widespread adoption of new technologies, including internet services, cryptocurrencies and payment systems,

could require substantial expenditures to modify or adapt our existing products and services,”

 

Don’t be surprised if you see this type of language popping up in SEC filings for similar-sized banking institutions.  They’ve gotten away with not innovating for the last several decades and are now scrambling to catch up to the blockchain development front.  We’ll be happy when the standard for Bank of America’s R&D department isn’t something called Zelle…

Price Analysis

After a week of sideways trading in the Bitcoin markets, we look for any breakthrough of the upside pressure around $10,500 and $12,000 on substantial volume. For now we’re stuck in the $8,000-$12,000 descending channel.   One bright spot to mention was that bitcoin fees were lower than ETH for the first time in a year this past week!  For any widespread adoption of crypto’s it’s imperative that fees remain lower or near zero.  One project with feeless transactions is Nano, the rebranded Raiblocks. Nano can handle more than 7,000 transactions per second and will be our focus in next Friday’s edition of crypto trades!

 

Looking Ahead

 

Plenty of partnerships to cover next week!  Vechain rebrands to Vechain Thor and partners with BMW while IOTA snags a partnership with Volkswagen. Monday marks the official launch of Litepay, an important milestone for legacy cryptocurrency Litecoin .  The biggest headline to debate next week will be the $400 million Poloniex purchase by Goldman Sachs backed Circle. Will Wall Street flip the positive media switch soon or continue the barrage of negative headlines?

 

Also don’t forget we are now a Registered Publisher on the BAT/Brave platform!  BAT, Basic Attention Token, is an advertising focused cryptocurrency, developed by Brendan Eich (Creator of Javascript), to connect viewers directly with content creators.  In an effort to cut out the $600 million in revenue that middle-men siphon in connecting these two groups over traditional networks, BAT has built an ultra-fast, ad-blocking browser dubbed “Brave”.  By downloading Brave you will be supporting our mission and helping further the future of decentralized advertising!  Click the link below to download your own Brave browser and read this article!

 

Brave Browser Download