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January week 2 Cryptocurrency markets analysis: BTC, ETH and XRP
The second week of January 2019 was punctuated by a Bearish trend in the markets across the board. This was after a promising start to the New Year where a Bullish trend was observed in most cryptos. The upward trend was projected to continue till the various Altcoins regained their previous psychological prices which had come down in the post fork period. Throughout the week, Bitcoin went under the $4000 mark which had held as support in week 1. The trend was also seen in Ripple and Ethereum which moved into the oversold area during the week signaling negative investor sentiments. Throughout the week, Bitcoin lost by 13.24%. It began the week trading at $4169 with a strong support at $4000 and most indicators pointing towards an upward trajectory. As the week wore on however, the Bears hit the market with a strong bearish momentum that saw Bitcoin end the week at $3617.

Do Stablecoins Help or Harm Cryptocurrency?
Camps are divided when it comes to stablecoins. The arguments have a similar ring to those surrounding ETFs. On one hand, ETFs promote adoption and encourage new investors. On the other, there's a compromise in decentralization with potential thousands or millions of people using the ETF as an investment vehicle, the ETF council suddenly has a disproportionate amount of weight to throw around when it comes to consensus making. Things are even more complicated than that with stablecoins  let's dive in. There are a few different types of stablecoins. It's a simplification, but it covers the bases. Non-collateralized coins are controlled by a central bank of smart contracts. Crypto enthusiasts don't like to hear words like central bank when it comes to crypto too often, but this is a little different if correctly executed, the smart contract system should control the rate of inflation indefinitely and without human input. It does this by taking selling bond tokens redeemable for the cryptocurrency at a discount rate users buy the tokens and make a profit by redeeming them.

Crash and Burn: The Ruthless Bitcoin Mining Industry - Crypto is Coming
Put it this way the Bitcoin mining is not for the faint of heart. Mining was once a hobbyist activity for crypto enthusiasts running Bitcoin nodes for fun and a sense of community more than to make money. Sure, there were always believers, but many people were just excited at the prospect of making their own, as Bitcoin godfather Andreas Antonopoulos calls it, nerd money without ever really considering the possibility that one day a Bitcoin would be worth even a single cent, let alone thousands of dollars. Wanna do some cool data mining Have a look at the #bitcoin transaction network dataset 6.2M nodes/37M weighted edges

Alipay partners with Malaysian bank to enable cross border Blockchain transactions - Crypto is Coming
The world economy is at the moment awash with Financial Technology advancements that have enabled cross-border transactions at the click of a button. To be globally competitive, most economies are speeding up legislations in order to regulate this growing sector while others have steer cleared off the cryptocurrency craze as another passing cloud. Just last April, Pakistan issued bans on the use of cryptocurrency. This hard stance seems to have been abandoned as it has come out to support the Blockchain technology. On Tuesday, a subsidiary of Norwegian telecoms multinational Telenor Group Telenor Microfinance Bank, has launched cross-border payments using blockchain technology from payments firm Alipay.

Australian Regulators put a freeze on BitConnect Promoter and open chase on his wife
Australian promoter, John Bigatton, has had his assets frozen and hit with a travel ban outside Australia. Bigatton is accused of floating a crypto-Pyramid scheme that saw investors lose $US2.6 billion ($3.7 billion). The directive was issued by the Federal Court in conjunction with international authorities after an investigation into his business affairs. The investigation was requested by Australia's equivalent of the U.S's equivalent of the Securities and Exchanges (SEC) Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). Mr. Bigatton has acted for several firms as a financial investments advisor and a wealth management trustee. Most of the companies he is affiliated with are located in Sydney and Melbourne. His involvement in these firms has had him linked to the collapse of Bitconnect which saw US investors make huge losses on their investments.

Weekly cryptocurrency analysis: January 2019, week 1
As a new year for cryptos begins, there has been a general Bull Run in the top twenty cryptos especially as well as across the board. The Bullish trend is perhaps the market's attempts at correction after bearish wave that hit the markets since November 2018. Throughout the first week of the year, most of the coins in the top twenty category according to market capitalization saw green on price analysis charts as investor confidence continued improving in the post fork period. The week was also punctuated with news that Ethereum was on its way to regaining its position as the second top crypto in terms of market capitalization after Bitcoin. This position had been taken by Ripple after ETH's poor showing in the markets during the 4th Quarter of 2018.

How Decentralized is Bitcoin Core?
When it comes to talking Bitcoin forks, people tend to get heated. It's a controversial subject in the cryptocurrency space, and unfortunately, newcomers asking about it are often met simply with derision or hyperbole from whoever answers them first. Many people have strong opinions on which fork is the best, but it often seems like these opinions are based on an emotional my team is better than yours mentality rather than hard facts. Let's get down to it what is Bitcoin Core, who controls it, and is it centralized or not Bitcoin Core is a Bitcoin client, meaning the end-user software that facilitates private key generation and security, payments, etc. It's a version of the Bitcoin protocol, and because enough people have agreed to use it, it's the most popular one. In 2014 the Bitcoin project was renamed Bitcoin Core by developers to distinguish it from other clients, so essentially Bitcoin Core = BTC. The source code for Bitcoin Core is stored on GitHub.

Bitcoin 2019 - What to Expect -
There's no denying it 2018 was a rough year for crypto in many respects. Despite the incredible leaps forward made in the technology, much of the mainstream media coverage focused on the price action of Bitcoin only, detailing the dramatic crash from an ATH of around $20,000 to under $4,000 today. With Bitcoin market dominance still firm, meaning downward activity in the price of Bitcoin negatively affects most/all altcoins as well, the market correction which has been ongoing for a year now is being dubbed Crypto Winter. Can we expect that to continue While it's anyone's guess, some guesses are more educated than others, and many market analysts believe that the market is reaching a bottom, despite the negative media coverage. Let's take a look at some of the major events that are influencing or will influence the market.

Abkhazia cuts off power supply to 15 crypto-mining farms in power conservation bid - Crypto is Coming
According to a news report from Coindoo, the Republic of Abkhazia is planning to cut down on power consumption for cryptocurrency mining farms. This is due to the fact that their large power demands are proving a detriment to the ordinary citizens. However, the affected players took the news positively and no retaliatory disputes were reported against the state directive. Abkhazia is a partially recognized state that was annexed of Georgia and where the cost of electricity is relatively cheaper than in other jurisdictions. The report detailed how the small state has been having issues providing enough power to all of its citizens due to the excessive power consumed off the national grid by cryptocurrency mining farms. Therefore, to free up more Megawatts, the nation announced that they will be cutting off fifteen cryptocurrency miners off the national power grid.

Bitmex CEO Believes $200 Is Coming For Ethereum - Crypto is Coming
The cryptocurrency world constantly is attempting to predict prices, especially when it comes to Bitcoin and Ethereum, two of the most well-known cryptocurrency projects in the world, and two of the largest cryptocurrencies in the world by market capitalization. Of course, this often means that many individuals are wrong in their predictions. In one of the most obvious examples, Tom Lee of Fundstrat Global Advisors, has been overly optimistic regarding Bitcoin's price. Specifically, Lee stated that the price of Bitcoin was going over $50,000 in 2017. In a later CNBC appearance, Lee said that he believed Bitcoin would reach $25,000 by the end of 2018. Given the fact that it is already several days from the year's end, the prediction is way off considering that the price of Bitcoin is under $4,000 (as of press time). Here is Lee's aforementioned CNBC appearance:

Japanese wine firm teams up with BitMex to take over Exchanger, cementing grip on the Crypto-industry - Crypto is Coming
Madison Group Holdings, a Japanese wine-manufacturing giant, has teamed up with BitMex, a Japanese cryptocurrency exchanger to acquire majority shareholding in BitOcean- a leading crypto assets exchanger in Japan. Madison Group is a Hong Kong based parent company engaged in the retail and wholesale trade of various wine products and has a market capitalization of over $500 Million. If the deal goes through, Madison Group, through one of its subsidiaries- Madison lab, will control 67% of the cryptocurrency exchanger in liaison with BitMex. The latter was brought on board as a qualified partner to help Madison group with the everyday technical running of the crypto assets exchange business.

Zilliqa Denies Facebook Rumors - Crypto is Coming
The cryptocurrency community has been quite enthusiastic about a particular piece of news, as it appears as though Facebook might be developing its own cryptocurrency. This is quite the catalyst, as Facebook does boast over 2 billion monthly active users, meaning that this is much more than simply a social media platform utilizing cryptocurrency it gives the opportunity for a significant portion of the world to participate in a blockchain ecosystem. The news comes off the heels of the fact that Facebook has been aggressively hiring blockchain engineers, so it didn't come as a complete surprise. The description for the job listings were quite cryptic: The blockchain team is a startup within Facebook, with a vision to make blockchain technology work at Facebook scale. We're exploring areas of interest across all facets of blockchain technology. Our ultimate goal is to help billions of people with access to things they don't have now that could be things like equitable financial services, new ways to save, or new ways to share information.

Western Union open to Cryptocurrency adoption - Crypto is Coming
Global cash transfer giant Western Union has revealed that it is evaluating options for the integration of blockchain technology and Cryptocurrency services to its platform. The revelations were made via a blog post and a video on the company's blog. The news follows an increased buzz around cryptocurrencies globally. Speaking in the ReutersPlus video, Western Union Global Money Transfer President Odilon Almeida says that they are better poised to benefit from the cryptocurrency movement in the long run in comparison to any other start up given their broad knowledge and experience in the international Money transfer business.

Cryptocurrency mining threatens to leave little-known Abkhazia with no power - Crypto is Coming
Winter is coming in the small state of Abkhazia. The state of Abkhazia, mostly unrecognized, has expressed fear over the massive use of its shaky electric supply to mine cryptocurrency. The state emerged as a cryptocurrency haven after annexing itself away from Georgia which also offers favorable conditions for cryptocurrency mining including low rates of electricity. However, high electricity usage has threatened to deny the common citizen regular electric supply as mining has proved untenable. The Abkhazian have enjoyed relatively low tariffs on electricity. Households pay about 40 Kopeks (0.6 Cents) for a Kilowatt of electricity. Additionally, the power supply is in such abundance that the government estimates that 30 to 40 percent of the population doesn't pay for power.

Iranian Students Turn To Crypto - Crypto is Coming
Thanks to newly imposed sanctions, Iranian students are utilizing cryptocurrency in order to pay for their tuition. The tension between the United States and Iran is nothing new. In 2002, the president at the time, George H.W. Bush, famously referred to Iran as part of the Axis Of Evil?, a term used to describe a group of foreign governments that seek weapons of mass destruction and sponsor terrorism. However, thanks to the sanctions that Trump recently imposed in November, there is a new unintended victim involved thanks to the disagreements between the two countries: students. Thanks to the ban on money transfers, Iranian students are now struggling to pay their tuition fees. In one particular example, 23 year-old law student Parsa Sadat actually has the money to pay for the tuition, but is essentially being told to fly back to Iran and retrieve the money in cash, which is both costly and obviously inconvenient.

Binance Labs Launches 8 New Blockchain Projects
Crypto exchange giant Binance is making headlines for another initiative aimed at fostering growth and innovation in the blockchain sector. Known for charitable programs and government partnerships, this time the company is launching 8 new blockchain labs to fund and educate entrepreneurs and early-stage blockchain teams. Binance Labs Incubation Program is a 10 week on-site program aimed at aiding blockchain developers. The San Francisco chapter launched its first batch blockchain projects yesterday and ended with an invite-only BUIDLers Day where 8 project teams (out of 500 initial team applicants) pitched to 150 top investors from Silicon Valley.

Samsung To Integrate Crypto Cold Wallets in Upcoming Galaxy 10 - Crypto is Coming
SamMobile, the biggest online Samsung community recently announced that the company is planning to integrate cryptocurrency cold wallets in its upcoming mobile phone Galaxy S10. Adnan Farooqi, the editor of SamMobile, stated: After hearing about Samsung's blockchain and cryptocurrency software, we resolute to dig around a little deeper. We can verify that the company is indeed developing one and that it may be launched with the Galaxy S10. The crypto services will come in two parts; a cold wallet for saving and storing cryptocurrency and a crypto wallet for transfers, viewing account information and transaction. Samsung's new wallet is expected to support Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), and Ethereum-derived token ERC20.

Why are Bitcoin Miners Shorting Bitcoin?
There's never a dull moment in the world of cryptocurrency. The latest bizarre development in the turbulent space is the news that Chinese Bitcoin miners have been shorting the price of the very asset they're seeking to produce, essentially betting money that the price will fall further. The actions of the miners actually have some solid logic behind them. By shorting the price of Bitcoin, they're hedging against the potential that they'll lose even more money in their current venture. Mining is very expensive, and the payoff for running up the huge energy bills associated with solving the cryptographic puzzles required to verify transactions and mine more Bitcoin is, of course, Bitcoin. However, when the price drops dramatically as it has in the current bear market, the cost of mining can be breakeven, or even worse.

Cryptocurrency Platform Cubits Files For Administration - Crypto is Coming
After a theft, it appears as though the UK cryptocurrency platform Cubits is officially closing down, and has filed for administration to return money to creditors. It has been a tough time for cryptocurrency startups and companies, given the fact that 2018 has been a brutally bearish in terms of price action. Bitmain recently closed down its operations in Israel, and Joseph Lubin (a co-founder of Ethereum) has admitted that the bear market has affected his Brooklyn blockchain startup Consensys. It appears as though the U.K. cryptocurrency platform Cubits is also closing down. Cubits is not closing down as a result of the markets, but because it apparently has lost funds to the tune of 29 million British pounds ($32 million USD) to fraudsters?. The money does not seem to be able to be reclaimed, and as a result, the company has filed for administration. This means that the company has become insolvent, and appointed an external administrator to work with those who are owed money by the company and collect monies owed.

Vermont Interested In Exploring Blockchain Technology - Crypto is Coming
It appears as though the state of Vermont is seriously exploring the potential of blockchain technology. The state is the second-smallest by population in the United States, and the announcement was made by Vermont attorney general T.J. Donovan. In a statement, Donovan said: In an era of persistent data hacks, security breaches, and online activity, exploring new and innovative ways to protect our data is essential. And, we must strive to balance economic opportunity with consumer protection. Vermont has apparently established a working group of state agencies to explore the potential of blockchain. The agencies include the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, the Secretary of State, the Department of Financial Regulation, and the Office of the Attorney General. The working group will not be working without any feedback, as input will be provided from stakeholders, blockchain associations, and industry experts.

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