Bitcoin investors BANNED from using their mega-profits to buy houses amid money-laundering fears

Bitcoin investors BANNED from using their mega-profits to buy houses amid money-laundering fears

Bitcoin investors BANNED from using their mega-profits to buy houses amid money-laundering fears

Investors who’ve made a mint are now trying to cash in on their sudden windfall by milking the UK’s property boom.

BITCOIN investors are being knocked back by mortgage lenders amid fears about money laundering.

The price of the virtual currency has rocketed nearly 1,500 percent in the past year.Some have made massive profits on Bitcoin but are facing obstacles because of transparency fears And now investors who’ve made a mint are trying to cash in on their sudden windfall by investing in the UK’s property bubble.

But lenders are now worried about the source of the cash and have been rejecting them for mortgages.

Broker Mark Stallard said one investor had a £40,000 deposit pot after investing in bitcoin but even he was denied a loan.

Mr Stallard, from House and Holiday Home Mortgages: said: "The first mortgage lender I rang asked me what a cryptocurrency was.

"I rang two other lenders and they said they would not touch it.

"When I mentioned where the money had come from there was massive reluctance to help or understand the problem.

"I do not believe the mortgage providers in general are ready for this issue and research tells me that a lot more people will be knocking on our doors with funds made or raised in this fashion.”

The perceived problem with cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, are that they are not regulated by central banks. Instead they are held digitally by people using electronic identities which allow them to remain anonymous and so could be used by criminals.

Several building societies said they would not accept a deposit derived from a cryptocurrency, while banks including Santander, Nationwide and Aldermore said they had no formal policies.

The Building Societies Association said: "There is currently no regulation of these electronic currencies, which puts them into the highest risk category in relation to money laundering.

"In addition, it is well known that such currencies are popular with criminals, who use them to launder the proceeds of crime.”

 

Author: By Patrick Knox 13th January 2018, 3:44 pm

 

Posted By David Ogden Entrepreneur
David ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreenur

Of course if you pay cash for the property, a bank may also want to know the source of the funds, So maybe you could get the seller to accept Cryptocurrency and record the transaction on the blockchain, which opens up a new ball game.

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, IOTA, Litecoin, NEM, Cardano – Price Analysis, Jan. 12

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, IOTA, Litecoin, NEM, Cardano - Price Analysis, Jan. 12

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple, IOTA, Litecoin, NEM, Cardano – Price Analysis, Jan. 12

The South Korean government has confirmed that it has no plans to ban cryptocurrency trading in the short-term. This is a major relief to the markets, which were reeling under selling pressure.

Warren Buffet’s warning that the cryptocurrencies will have a “bad ending” also did not have any noticeable effect on the prices.

During the recent decline, instead of being perturbed, many traders saw this as a buying opportunity and rushed to open new accounts. The cryptocurrency exchange Binance saw a whopping addition of 240,000 users in just an hour on Jan. 10.

However, unlike the previous occasions, the pullback from the lows has been muted. Is this a sign of waning momentum? Let’s find out.

 

BTC/USD

Bitcoin broke below the 50-day SMA on Jan. 11 and since then, it has been struggling to climb above it. It has managed to hold on to the critical support level between the trendline of the symmetrical triangle and the neckline of the head and shoulders pattern.

If Bitcoin fails to rally within the next two days, chances are that it will turn down and break below $12,500, sinking it to $8,000 levels.

On the other hand, if the cryptocurrency clings on to the support and moves above the 20-day EMA, it will indicate a short-term bottom.

Very aggressive traders can buy on a breakout above $14,500 and keep a stop loss of $12,500. The target objective of this trade is $16,500. This is a very risky trade, hence, should be attempted with only 25 percent of the usual position size.

Risk-averse traders should wait for a reliable setup to form as there is no clear trend on the BTC/USD pair as long as it trades inside the triangle. It’s better to wait for a breakout or breakdown from the triangle before initiating any positions.

 

ETH/USD

Ethereum has been comparatively strong during the South Korean ban episode. This shows that its owners are not in a hurry to sell their holdings.

The buyers jumped in at the 38.2 percent Fibonacci retracement levels of the latest rally from $640.43 to $1,382. The uptrend remains intact and the bulls are likely to make another attempt to break out of the recent highs at $1,382.

 

If the price breaks out of the overhead resistance zone of $1,382 to $1,434, it will signal the start of the next leg of the up move, which can carry the ETH/USD pair towards its target objective of $1,814.67.

On the downside, support exists at the 20-day EMA and at $965.18, which is the intraday low on Jan. 8.

However, as we expect a strong resistance between $1,382 and $1,434, we are not recommending any fresh long positions in it.

 

BCH/USD

Bitcoin Cash broke out of the range on Jan. 10, however, contrary to our expectation, it could not rally to $3,249. It faced strong resistance at $2,950 and turned down from there.

It continues to be range bound but in a larger range. On the upside, $2,950 is the critical resistance and on the downside, $2,291 continues to be a strong support. If this support breaks, it has another support at the $2,072 level.

Traders should wait for a breakout above $2950 to initiate long positions. The breakout is likely to carry the BCH/USD pair towards the highs.

On the other hand, a breakdown below $2,072 can result in a decline to $1,733 and thereafter to $1,200.

 

XRP/USD

For the past three days, Ripple has been attempting to hold the uptrend line. The bulls continue to buy the dips close to the $1.5 levels.

The cryptocurrency is currently correcting inside a descending channel. If the bulls succeed in breaking out of the resistance line of the channel, a move to $2.85 is likely.

Strong support exists between $1.76978 and $1.40463, which are 50 percent and 61.8 percent Fibonacci retracement levels of the recent rally from $0.22255 to $3.317.

But we don’t find any reliable buy setups on the XRP/USD pair. Hence, we are not recommending any trade on it.

 

IOTA/USD

IOTA has continued its range-bound trading between $3.032 and $4.34. Yesterday, Jan. 11, the bulls again defended the lower end of the range.

We expect the range to hold. Hence, traders can buy on weakness towards $3.1 and keep a stop loss of $2.7.

The IOTA/USD pair should attempt to move towards $4.34 once it breaks out of the downtrend line. A move above $4.34 is likely to propel it towards the upper end of the range at $5.59.

Our bullish view will be invalidated if price breaks down and sustains below $3.032.

 

LTC/USD

Litecoin is still stuck inside the symmetrical triangle. Yesterday, Jan.11, the bears failed to break down of the triangle.

The bulls will now try to push prices towards the resistance line of the triangle at $280. The move will gain momentum above $254. The support is way lower at $215.

At the moment the risk to reward ratio is not attractive for trades.

The LTC/USD pair will become bearish if price breaks down and sustains below the 50-day SMA.

 

XEM/USD

As forecast in our previous analysis, the decline to the trendline support prompted buying. NEM is currently in a pullback. Should we trade this?

The traders bought the dip below the trendline support yesterday, Jan. 11. We now expect the XEM/USD pair to rally to $1.56949 and $1.68590, which are 50 percent and 61.8 percent Fibonacci retracement levels of the recent fall from $2.06278 to $1.07619.

The aggressive traders can buy at the current levels of $1.38 and keep a stop loss at $1.06, below yesterday’s lows. Though the initial risk to reward ratio is not attractive, we believe that buying near the strong support of the trendline is a good strategy.

 

ADA/BTC

Buyers bought the dip below the trendline on Jan. 11. We had forecast a pullback from the trendline in our previous analysis but advised waiting for a confirmation of a bottom before buying. So, can the traders buy now?

If the pullback sustains above the 0.000057 levels, we expect the move to extend to $0.00006616 and $0.00007221, which are 50 percent and 61.8 percent Fibonacci retracement levels of the recent fall.

Traders can buy the ADA/BTC pair at the current levels and keep a stop loss at 0.00004. Here too, we are recommending a trade without an attractive risk to reward ratio because we are buying close to the strong support of the trendline from where the price can surprise on the upside.

 

 

Author: Rakesh Upadhyay

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin is no long the only game in crypto-currency town

Bitcoin is no long the only game in crypto-currency town

Bitcoin is no long the only game in crypto-currency town

IT STARTED as a joke. Dogecoin was launched in 2013 as a bitcoin parody, using as its mascot a Japanese shiba inu dog, a popular internet meme. The crypto-currency was never really used, except for tipping online, and one of its founders has called it quits. But recently its price has soared: on January 7th the dollar value of all Dogecoins in circulation reached $2bn, a sign of how crazy crypto-currency markets have become. It is also a reminder that, for all the focus on bitcoin, it is no longer the only game in town. Its market capitalisation now amounts to only about one-third of the crypto-market (see chart).

Bitcoin is no long the only game in crypto-currency town

A new crypto-currency is born almost daily, often through an “initial coin offering” (ICO), a form of online crowdfunding. CoinMarketCap, a website, lists about 1,400 digital coins or tokens, including UFO Coin, PutinCoin, Sexcoin and InsaneCoin (worth $7m). Most are no more than curiosities, but by January 10th, around 40 had a market capitalisation of more than $1bn.

First on the list, after bitcoin, was Ethereum, whose coin, called ether, reached a market capitalisation of $137bn. Ethereum’s claim to fame is that it is also a platform for “smart contracts”—business rules encapsulated in software. Most ICO tokens, for instance, are issued by such contracts. Its success has attracted crypto-copycats: Cardano ($20bn) and NEO ($8bn), a Chinese version.

Ripple, too, is defying gravity. It is all the rage in crypto-crazy South Korea, which this week roiled crypto-markets with plans to ban trading on exchanges. Ripple sells software to move money between countries; more than 100 banks have signed up to its technology, based on a coin called XRP. Its market capitalisation jumped by more than 40,000% in 2017, reaching nearly $149bn on January 4th, before falling back to $78bn. That still makes Chris Larsen, a Ripple co-founder, one of the world’s richest people, at least on digital paper.

Less well-known coins have also taken wing. Monero ($6bn) and Zcash ($2bn) focus on privacy. Stellar ($9.8bn) has developed a system to transfer funds cheaply that is used by charities, particularly in poor countries. IOTA ($10.1bn) allows connected machines to exchange information and payments securely. And then there is Bitcoin Cash ($46bn), whose founders split from bitcoin in August 2017 because they were unhappy with how it was run.

Might any of these one day replace bitcoin as crypto-land reserve currency, something insiders call the “flippening”? Given bitcoin’s governance problems (another “fork”, or split, may be in the offing) and limited capacity (a transaction now costs nearly $30, on average, in fees), this cannot be excluded. But the others have problems, too. Ethereum’s user fees have soared and the system has again hit technical snags. As for Ripple, some question the extent to which XRPs are actually used.

Come what may, the field will only get more crowded. Kodak, the archetypal victim of digital disruption, wants to jump on the crypto-wagon: on January 9th it announced that it will launch a coin to allow photographers to charge for their works. More ambitious will be the ICO of Telegram, a messaging service with 180m users: it aims to raise $1.2bn and issue a token called Gram that can be used to pay for a range of services from online storage to virtual private networks. Even Facebook has reportedly started looking into creating a token. Should the world’s biggest social network ever make that move, bitcoin’s days as the leading crypto-currency would almost certainly be numbered.
 

Source: The Economist

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin falls as one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency markets readies a bill to ban trading

Bitcoin falls as one of the world's biggest cryptocurrency markets readies a bill to ban trading

Bitcoin falls as one of the world's biggest cryptocurrency markets readies a bill to ban trading

  • South Korea's justice minister said that the country is preparing a bill that will ban all cryptocurrency trading

  • Park Sang-ki told reporters that there are "great concerns" regarding virtual currencies

  • Bitcoin tumbled more than 12 percent following Park's remarks

South Korea's justice minister said on Thursday that a bill is being prepared to ban all cryptocurrency trading in the country.

That news is a major development for the cryptocurrency space, as South Korea is one of the biggest markets for major coins like bitcoin and ethereum.

According to industry website CryptoCompare, more than 10 percent of ethereum is traded against the South Korean won — the second largest concentration in terms of fiat currencies behind the dollar. Meanwhile, 5 percent of all bitcoin are traded against the won.

"There are great concerns regarding virtual currencies and justice ministry is basically preparing a bill to ban cryptocurrency trading through exchanges," Park Sang-ki said at a press conference, according to the ministry's press office.

Bitcoin tumbled more than 12 percent following Park's remarks, according to CoinDesk's bitcoin price index that tracks prices from four exchanges. At 1:26 p.m. HK/SIN, the cryptocurrency price retraced some of its losses to trade at $13,547.7.

Park added that he couldn't disclose more specific details about proposed shutdown of cryptocurrency trading exchanges in the country, adding that various government agencies would work together to implement several measures.

Reuters further reported that a press official said the proposed ban on cryptocurrency trading was announced after "enough discussion" with other government agencies including the nation's finance ministry and financial regulators.

Cryptocurrency trading in South Korea is very speculative and similar to gambling. Major cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ethereum are priced significantly higher in the country's exchanges than elsewhere in the world. For example, bitcoin traded at $17,169.65 per token at local exchange Bithumb, which was a 31 percent premium to the CoinDesk average price.

That difference in price is called a "kimchi premium" by many traders.

In fact, earlier this week, industry data provider CoinMarketCap tweeted that it would exclude some South Korean exchanges in price calculations due to the "extreme divergence in prices from the rest of the world" and for "limited arbitrage opportunity." The exchanges that were removed from the price calculation included Bithumb, Korbit and Coinone.

Last month, the South Korean Financial Services Commission said it was prohibiting cryptocurrency exchanges from issuing new trading accounts. If an exchange does allow new accounts, the government has the ability to take action to either stop trading or shut the exchange down, the commission said in a statement.

The commission added that, since much of the cryptocurrency trading was being done anonymously, users must use their real names.

The government also indicated it would closely monitor banks and would "swiftly" step in to limit fund flows into cryptocurrencies if necessary.

Bitcoin exposed stocks in South Korea took a major hit after the announcement. Shares of Omnitel, which has a bitcoin remittance business, crashed 30 percent, Vidente shares tumbled 29.96 percent, Digital Optics fell 13.46 percent and KPM Tech was down 5.19 percent.

That news from the justice minister comes after the country's largest cryptocurrency exchanges were raided by police and tax agencies this week for alleged tax evasion, people familiar with the investigation told Reuters.

 

Author : Saheli Roy Choudhury

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin Price Technical Analysis for 10th January – Small Reversal Signal

Bitcoin Price Technical Analysis for 01/10/2018 – Small Reversal Signal

Bitcoin Price Technical Analysis for 01/10/2018 – Small Reversal Signal

Bitcoin Price Key Highlights

Bitcoin price appears ready for another selloff as price has formed a head and shoulders pattern on the 1-hour chart.

Price has yet to break below the neckline around the $14,000 major psychological support.

The chart pattern is approximately $3,000 tall so the resulting drop could be of the same height.

Bitcoin price is forming yet another selloff signal on a short-term time frame, but technical indicators are looking mixed.
 

Technical Indicators Signals
 

The 100 SMA is still above the longer-term 200 SMA on this time frame to suggest that the path of least resistance is to the upside or that the rally could continue. However, the gap between the moving averages has narrowed significantly to show that a downward crossover and and pickup in bearish momentum is imminent.

A break below the neckline could take bitcoin price down to the $10,000-11,000 region next while a bounce could lead to a move up to $15,000 then the highs at $17,000.

Stochastic is pulling up from the oversold region to signal a return in buying momentum while RSI also appears to be slowly heading north as well.

Market Factors

Dollar demand has once again ticked higher on record high Treasury yields, as well as record closes for equity indices. Traders are now looking ahead to a positive earnings season scheduled to start on Friday, and these upbeat expectations are likely to be sustained as tax reform kicks in.

Meanwhile, bitcoin price continues to reel from the hesitation among ETFs facing SEC regulation. A couple of funds withdrew their applications, citing pushback from the financial watchdog. Direxion Shares ETF Trust secretary Angela Brickl wrote
 

“On a call with the Staff on January 5, 2018, the Staff expressed concerns regarding the liquidity and valuation of the underlying instruments in which the Fund intends to primarily invest and requested that the Trust withdraw the Amendment until such time as these concerns are resolved. In response to the Staff’s request, the Trust respectfully requests withdrawal of the Amendment.”

This cryptocurrency is also losing ground to its altcoin rivals, as well as equities that are performing better.

 

Author: SARAH JENN

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin drops below $15,000 as regulation, demand concerns linger

Bitcoin drops below $15,000 as regulation, demand concerns linger

Bitcoin drops below $15,000 as regulation, demand concerns linger

Bitcoin slumped, dragging down smaller rivals such as ether and litecoin, as concerns that regulators will tighten their grip on the market weigh on the world's largest cryptocurrency.

Regulators in China and South Korea are increasing oversight on cryptocurrency trading and mining, while the US Securities and Exchange Commission late last year started cracking down on some digital token sales, known as ICOs. Coinmarketcap.com's decision to exclude Korean pricing data for coins helped create the appearance of a large drop in prices, which some traders attributed as playing a part in the selloff.

"News on the regulatory front is dragging down cryptos," said Gabor Gurbacs, director of digital-asset strategy at VanEck Associates Corp. "South Korea and China tightening is weighing on bitcoin and in the ICO market, things started slowing down, with the SEC cracking down on illegal offerings."

Bitcoin slumped as much as 17 per cent to $14,820, the most in more than two weeks. The rout in bitcoin is part of a broader selloff in the cryptocurrency realm, with all of the top 10 by market cap falling, and most tumbling by at least 10 per cent, according to Coinmarketcap.com. Cardano fell 16 per cent, while litecoin slumped as much as 16 per cent to as low as $230. Bitcoin is little changed this year after surging about 1,400 per cent in 2017.

China plans to limit power use by some bitcoin miners, people familiar with the matter said last week, a potential challenge to an industry whose energy-intensive computer networks enable transactions in the cryptocurrency. The People's Bank of China outlined the plan Jan. 3 at a closed-door meeting, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because it wasn't public. They didn't detail how authorities plan to enact the curbs.

South Korea began inspections at six banks including Industrial Bank of Korea, that provide virtual accounts to companies related to cryptocurrency trading, to clamp down on potential money laundering. The nation last month said it will restrictively allow cryptocurrency trading on only qualified exchanges and review a possible capital gains tax on crypto trading as a way to restrain the nation's frenzied speculation.

Demand for cryptocurrencies in Korea is large enough to cause distortion on some prices. Ripple surged to almost $4 on some Korean exchanges, while it trades at around $2.50 elsewhere. Coinmarketcap.com is excluding Korean exchanges from its pricing, which helped cause ripple to tumble as much as 31 per cent today.

Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at TF Global Markets in London, said the increased regulatory oversight will weigh on prices in the short term, but should be positive in the longer term.

"We need regulators to look into the space more closely, the Korean exchanges have become crazy in terms of price differences so these regulatory actions would help the price stability," Aslam said. "As for the mining operations, China is making the process more difficult for miners, but opportunist have started to focus on Canada which is more regulatory friendly and cheap on the energy front."

Author : Camila Russo

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur.
David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Why African millennials can’t get enough of Bitcoin

Why African millennials can't get enough of Bitcoin

Why African millennials can't get enough of Bitcoin

Bitcoin's eye-watering price surge over the past year is proving too tempting to resist despite fears that cryptocurrencies are a bubble floating towards an inevtitable burst. One group for whom it holds particular appeal is African millenials, writes the BBC's Catherine Byaruhanga.

Thirty year-old Peace Akware in Kampala is a convert to the crytocurrency craze. Like any self-respecting middle class millennial here her smartphone is always within reach and with it her digital wallet.

"I check my Bitcoin every day and any chance I can get. Any minute, any hour, anytime, as often as I can," she tells me from the small bungalow she rents on the outskirts of Kampala.

Finding a job here is almost like a lottery for graduates so Ugandans often have so-called side hustles. Peace has sold clothes and even got into money lending. Both failed. But buying cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin appeals to her because it requires less of her time and there are no upfront costs.

She's bought more than a thousand dollars worth of bitcoin. So far the gamble is paying off and overall she's seeing her digital value rise. "You know there's potential for it growing even further. I would like to buy a car. I would like to buy land. I would like to build with it".

Disrupting remittances

It's not just those hoping to get rich quick who are getting in on the action.

In parts of the continent – especially commercial hubs like Lagos, Nairobi and Johannesburg – a small but growing number of people are finding that cryptocurrencies offer a cheaper solution to an expensive problem – transferring funds across borders.

The technology platform Bitpesa uses Bitcoin as a medium to transfer cash across borders.

It's like a remittance company.

With traditional remittance companies like Western Union, when you transfer money initially it goes from your local currency into dollars then on the other side they receive dollars which are then converted into the local currency.

You lose a lot of money in that conversion.

What Bitpesa does is substitute the dollars with bitcoin. It's cheaper, especially when there is a shortage of dollars in the country or restrictions on accessing dollars. It's also quicker because you don't have to go through long complicated bank approvals.

Elizabeth Rossiello is the CEO of Bitpesa. Even as someone who knows how the finance world works, she gets frustrated with traditional banking.

"I've been in Nairobi for the past month and I had three big banking things to do. All three of these operations with three different Kenyan banks were cancelled for different reasons, or had delays or needed additional information so it took almost two and a half weeks per transaction to get them finalised and I'm an expert."

Bitpesa has been operating for four years now and has over 6,000 customers across the continent. It focuses on big-ticket transfers – for example, paying suppliers in China or employees in another country.

In Nigeria, when the government placed controls on access to the US dollar during a financial crunch, Bitcoin made it much easier for businesses to transfer cash abroad, something that has increased interest in cryptocurrencies in the country.

In places like Zimbabawe, where there has been political and economic instability, Bitcoin has become a place to store value, buy goods and services from abroad and crucially a vehicle for remittances from the diaspora.

Many central banks are sceptical. The Nigerian, Kenyan and Ugandan central banks have issued warnings about getting involved in the new and unregulated market. The Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya went as far as saying digital currencies are a type of Ponzi scheme because of the way their value often fluctuates.

Bitcoin classes

Martin Serugga, a sharply dressed currency trader in Kampala warns people to be cautious too.

He says unfamiliarity about the new financial instruments could lead to criminals duping customers out of their money.

Nevertheless, he's started weekly classes with over 50 people attending to learn about cryptocurrencies and how to trade them against traditional currencies like the US dollar or British pound.

He says high youth unemployment in Uganda is driving interest in Bitcoin and other products.

Martin teaching class.

 

Mr Serugga's class is made up of equal numbers of men and women majority of them are young. They come to an upmarket coffee shop for their dose of the financial markets. The bright projector on the screen flashes numbers, graphs and bright colours.

Joachim Ndhokero, a recent economics graduate, is still unemployed. His father encouraged him to attend the classes to make some money but it's not been easy. He lost over $900 (£664) in a trade gone wrong. Before he lost all his money he had just made a $200 profit. Then he went to the cinema and lost everything.

"I think it was within like two hours.

"That day I learnt that for crytocurrencies since they have a bigger spread they can easily bring in losses. If it's a loss, it's really a loss."

The expert advice here is "use what you can afford to lose".

Blockchain magic

But it's not just the currency aspect of this technology that people think will transform the continent.

Digital security expert Neil Blazevic sees the blockchain technology which underpins cryptocurrencies as the more important innovation.

Blockchain is a form of recording data that cannot be tampered with or hacked. It can be used for documents from contracts drawn up by lawyers to land registries.

He lists many more applications.

"If African developers, entrepreneurs, and governments can leverage blockchain technologies they may have a shot at tackling some of the continent's most intractable problems of the unbanked masses, digital identities, untrusted voting systems, to name only a few applications," Mr Blazevic explains.

"With the right support for innovation, and collaboration Africa could once again leapfrog over the digital divide and become a market leader just like it did in the move from landline communications infrastructure to the mobile phone ecosystem."

One person who has fully embraced the African mobile phone revolution is Ms Akware. She continues to watch over her digital wallet.

She knows that the value of Bitcoin could fall at any moment. If all fails she'll probably start again from scratch with a new venture.

For the moment she's holding on, hoping to buy her first car in two months.

 

Source BBC News

 

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur
Dacvid Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

If the NYSE has its way, a risky leveraged ETF which doubles the return of bitcoin could soon hit the market

If the NYSE has its way, a risky leveraged ETF which doubles the return of bitcoin could soon hit the market

If the NYSE has its way, a risky leveraged ETF which doubles the return of bitcoin could soon hit the market

  • The New York Stock Exchange has asked SEC regulators to list five exchange-traded funds that track bitcoin futures on one of its markets.

  • The ETFs are short-term investment vehicles designed to multiply returns in the cryptocurrency market, the SEC filing said.

  • The NYSE has already issued several bitcoin-related filings to the SEC.

If the NYSE has its way, a risky leveraged ETF which doubles the return of bitcoin could soon hit the market
An improvised message tells passersby to "buy bitcoin" on the University of Oregon campus in December 2017 — the same month the cryptocurrency's price rocketed from $10,000 to nearly $20,000.

The New York Stock Exchange has asked the Securities and Exchange Commission to allow it to list five bitcoin-related exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on one of its markets, according to an SEC filing.

The ETFs were created by Direxion Asset Management to track bitcoin futures trading. While they are not tied to the price of bitcoin itself, the funds aim to multiply investor returns when compared to the underlying market, the filing said.

The instruments, named 1.25X Bull Fund, 1.5X Bull Fund, and 2X Bull Fund, will leverage "investment results (before fees and expenses) that correlate positively to either 125%, 150%, or 200% the daily return of the target benchmark," the filing said.

For each fund, that means a 1 percent rise in the price of bitcoin futures should result in a per-share gain of between 1.25 percent and 2 percent, depending on which Bull Fund is used. However, the potential for higher rewards also comes with higher risk: If the price of bitcoin falls, investors' losses would be multiplied by 1.25.

As such, the funds are not intended for long-term investing, the filing said. The NYSE has issued several filings related to the bitcoin market, including for bitcoin-related ETFs, with the SEC.

If the SEC approves this request, the five ETFs will be listed on Arca, a secondary marketplace on the NYSE. The news was first reported by Business Insider and Reuters.

The NYSE's move comes after two of its rival exchanges, the Cboe and the CME, won approval to list bitcoin futures.

The buzz around bitcoin and its competing digital currencies exploded in 2017, driving a 1,300 percent annual gain in the price of bitcoin. Asset managers have been racing to design more than 10 proposals for bitcoin funds that are currently before U.S. regulators.

New ETFs could make access to bitcoin easier and, in the case of the Direxion product, mean bigger stakes for investors.

The NYSE did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment.

Author: Elizabeth Gurdus CNBC

 

Posted by David Ogden Entreprenuer
David ogden cryptocurrency entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Five predictions for digital currencies in 2018 — including stomach-churning drops, bitcoin-related IPO

Five predictions for digital currencies in 2018 — including stomach-churning drops, bitcoin-related IPO

 

  • More institutions will get into cryptocurrencies this year, analysts say.
  • They expect more regulation and bitcoin's price to drop, before recovering.
  • Stock investors may also get a chance to invest in a digital currency-related IPO.
  • After the bitcoin craze rose to a near-fever pitch in the last several weeks of 2017, several investors and analysts in the space see more growing pains for cryptocurrencies this year.

Here are five predictions for digital currencies, based on those interviews:

1. More institutions will get into cryptocurrencies.
"Our institutional investor base is very interested in learning more and getting exposure," said Michael Graham, a Canaccord Genuity analyst who has published several reports on digital currencies. "One of our major themes is that as we roll out through 2018, it's the year of institutions getting exposure to the space."
The number of institutional-level investment products related to bitcoin is increasing.
In addition to the CME and Cboe bitcoin futures that launched in December, Cantor Fitzgerald and Nasdaq are planning their own derivatives products. Analysts also expect regulators will approve a bitcoin exchange-traded fund in the second half of this year, or in early 2019.
"With the regulated futures markets going live in 2017, the stage is set for ETFs to gain approval in 2018," Nolan Bauerle, director of research at CoinDesk, said in an email. "In fact, the Cboe filed for 6 cryptocurrency ETFs at the end of 2017 which could go live in 2018. This would dramatically increase how institutional investors can get exposure."
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission declined to comment.

2. There will be more regulation and bitcoin's price will drop.
However, in the meantime, regulators will likely try to limit speculation in cryptocurrencies.
In the last several months, the SEC has become increasingly vocal in warning investors about the risks of cryptocurrencies. The commission also has suspended trading in some companies due to concerns about their claims regarding their token-related announcements.
"One of the things we'll see [is] enforcement here from the regulators," Canaccord's Graham said. He expects that greater regulation will cause a "major price dislocation event for the whole sector."
Bitcoin has soared more than 1,500 percent to near $16,200 over the last 12 months. But it is still down about 18 percent from its all-time high above $19,800 hit in mid-December. Meanwhile, smaller cryptocurrencies have surged hundreds of percent in the last several weeks, bringing the total market value of all digital coins to above $770 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.
Action by regulators could halt those gains. Bitcoin fell more than $2,000 in September when China cracked down on digital currencies.
Spencer Bogart, managing director and head of research at venture capital firm Blockchain Capital, expects that many cryptofunds will not be prepared to handle a monthly decline of 25 percent.
"I think we could easily purge 60-75% of crypto hedge funds in this type of market," Bogart said in an email. "In this environment, funds that can call capital and deploy it counter-cyclically stand to benefit significantly."
More than 120 such funds opened in 2017 for a total of 175 funds, according to financial research firm Autonomous Next.
In contrast to Bogart, Autonomous' global director of fintech strategy, Lex Sokolin, predicts the total number of cryptofunds will nearly triple to 500 this year. But he said the focus will be less on the number of funds and more on assets under management, which he expects to reach $20 billion.

3. It will be a wild, volatile ride. 

The contrasting views on the future of cryptofunds come as some analysts expect bitcoin to ride an even wilder wave this year.
Ari Paul, chief investment officer of cryptocurrency investment firm BlockTower Capital, predicts that bitcoin will trade at both $4,000 and $30,000 at some point in 2018.
One reason some analysts say bitcoin will ultimately rise further is that investors will bet on a payout from more splits in the digital currency. When some bitcoin developers decide to implement their own upgrade of the bitcoin network, bitcoin investors at the time of the split receive equal amounts of the split-off coin.
Aug. 1's split of bitcoin into bitcoin and bitcoin cash was "a change in the trend," said Ramon Quesada, a vocal member of Spain's cryptocurrency community. Developers "are using the brand bitcoin and they are splitting the main chain. They are making a fork. You create a new chain and you give a new name to this chain."
Bitcoin trades near $16,200, while bitcoin cash trades around $2,600.
"We think we're going to have more forks in 2018 than 2017," Canaccord's Graham said. "Ultimately we think those forks are going to be a short-term tail wind to bitcoin's value and a long-term headwind"
Bitcoin still faces many challenges, such as improving transaction fees and speed.

4. Bitcoin will prevail, while other cryptocurrencies grow. 
While bitcoin's price has stagnated in the last two weeks, smaller digital currencies such as ripple, stellar and tron have surged into the ranks of the largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.
Erik Voorhees, CEO of digital asset exchange ShapeShift, said that in contrast to bitcoin's dominance on the platform a year ago, about half of transactions on the platform now don't involve the popular digital currency at all.
However, bitcoin should still benefit from the increased interest in the "alt-coins." Analysts also point out that since bitcoin is the most established digital currency, it is often the way new investors access the cryptocurrency space.
"Bitcoin has such magnificent network effects that I don't see another alt-coin that's a little better at payments" or some other function right now, Autonomous' Sokolin said. "One of the top 10 will collapse."

5. Stock investors may get a chance to invest in a digital currency-related IPO.
As interest in digital currencies has grown, the companies involved with the business have become billion-dollar entities. Leading U.S. cryptocurrency marketplace Coinbase, valued at $1.6 billion, has indicated it could pursue an initial public offering.
"I do think the public is going to see some crypto-owned IPOs this year and more broadly blockchain IPOs," Canaccord's Graham said. He said cryptocurrency-related companies that want to give U.S. regulators a better impression are likely "going to rely on old-fashioned equity."
Coinbase declined to comment.
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But just as greater regulation in the U.S. has encouraged more blockchain development outside the country, the first crypto-related public offering may not happen in America either.
"IPOs are going to happen outside the U.S. first," said Ryan Gilbert, partner at Propel VC, which focuses on financial technology and has a $250 million fund. Propel is indirectly a minority investor in Coinbase, Gilbert said.
Regardless, investors will need to be extremely cautious about companies making announcements related to cryptocurrencies and adding "blockchain" to their name. Some tiny stocks have soared on such changes, prompting regulators to issue warnings about potential scams.
The market moves mirror the tech bubble, when many stocks saw a dramatic price surge after adding "dot-com" to their names.
A paper published in 2000 through Purdue University found the dot-com name changes began around June 1998 and picked up in the first five months of 1999, at an average rate of seven name changes a month. Most of the companies were traded over the counter, and regardless of their level of involvement with the internet, the name change resulted in returns of about 74 percent for the 10 days surrounding the announcement day, the paper said.
"What the dot-com paper shows is that reasoning goes away when you're looking at a hot industry," co-author Raghavendra Rau told CNBC in a phone interview this week. He is now a professor of finance at the University of Cambridge.
If he had to guess, Rau said it may take at least two or three years for the blockchain stock mania to subside. "My personal sense is the technology is good, but like every new technology I don't think the broad pattern [of] history changes very much. There will be manias."

Author: Evelyn Cheng

Posted by David Ogden Entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden

Bitcoin Exchanges seeking clarity over levy of GST

Bitcoin Exchanges seeking clarity over levy of GST

Bitcoin Exchanges seeking clarity over levy of GST

MUMBAI: Are Bitcoin exchanges required to pay goods and services tax? If they are, what would the rate be? And, will GST be levied on the revenues or operating margins of these exchanges?

India's top seven Bitcoin exchanges, which include Zebpay, Unocoin, CoinSecure and BtcxIndia, plan to approach the Advance Authority of Ruling (AAR) for clear answers to these questions, two people with direct knowledge of the matter told ET. AAR is a quasi-judicial body that can decide the applicability of tax rates.

"At least one Bitcoin exchange has already filed an application with the Maharashtra AAR for future tax liability," said one of the persons cited above. "The tax department is currently researching the concept as Bitcoins are a very complex subject." Zebpay, Unocoin, CoinSecure and BtcxIndia didn't respond to queries.

For the exchanges, the rate could depend on what the authorities deem Bitcoins to be — goods, services or currency. If Bitcoin is held to be a currency, there will be no GST. If it's a good, then tax of 18% could be levied, and 12% if deemed to be a service.

"The question for many Bitcoin players is whether GST is applicable on the total revenue or on the margins they earn," said Abhishek A Rastogi, partner at law firm Khaitan & Co. "This is mainly because the tax authority must give clarity on whether Bitcoin exchanges are selling goods and services, or are mere trading platforms that earn margins."

AAR DECISION TO DEFINE BIZ MODEL FOR BITCOIN EXCHANGES

According to another government official, who has reviewed the balance sheets of Bitcoin players, their size is quite substantial. "The combined revenue of top seven players would be around Rs 40,000 crore and they operate at about 20% margins," the official said. "In most cases, whenever there is a 'buy' or a 'sell' order on their platforms, these exchanges charge huge differences, in the range of about Rs 1lakh." ..

If that's the case, the indirect tax department could be looking at potential revenue of up to Rs 7,200 crore (if GST is levied at 18%). AAR's decision will also help establish the business model for Bitcoin exchanges in India, defining the category for cryptocurrencies — goods, services or currency.

"The option of proceeding with advance rulings under GST should be exercised to enable clarity on future tax treatment, more so in cases where existing tax positions are untested," said MS Mani, partner, Deloitte India. Industry insiders said Bitcoin players, including Indian exchanges, earn their revenue through commissions, transaction fees, or price-arbitrage opportunities. Most of the exchanges allow trading of various cryptocurrencies besides Bitcoins.

Experts said some Bitcoin exchanges have not been forthcoming with their data and have not paid any sales tax or VAT until now. One of the persons cited above said some exchanges had submitted different revenue figures to the sales tax and VAT authorities. "When we compared the annual results and explanations submitted to the sales tax and VAT authorities, they were diametrically opposite," he said.

Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency that allows online payments between individuals without the involvement of middlemen or financial institutions. Bitcoin prices lost about 4% Thursday evening, and were trading at $14,546 a unit, Coindesk data showed.

 

Author: Sachin Dave ET Bureau|Updated: Jan 05, 2018, 10.30 AM IST

 

Posted By David Ogden Entrepreneur
David ogden cryptocurrency entrepreneur

David – http://markethive.com/david-ogden