by biodieselchris - April 24th, 2017 12:45 am
Hello fellow PSW-ers, it's biodieselchris here. I've been an interested in cryptocurrencies (informally, "cryptos" or "coins") since 2011 when I first heard about Bitcoin, Since that time I've become somewhat of a subject matter expert and personal investor in Bitcoin and other alternative cryptocurrencies ("altcoins"). I have even started one of my own!
I've been posting comments about cryptos in Phil's daily post from time to time. Recently, Phil and I got on a call and he asked if I would like to run a blog on his site specifically about cryptos, which I thought was a great idea. My goal would be to educate members on what I know about how coins work, how I research coins (what I find interesting), how exactly one can invest (buy, hold, and sell) coins and a basic, easy-to-follow general how-to on all things crypto. In addition, other members have expressed an interest in learning more directly in the comments as well.
A cryptocurrency is a unique digital asset that has characteristics of both a currency (exchangeability) and an asset (store of value). There are lots and lots of great articles around the web which I will link to in future posts. However, today I want to post specifically about trading. Before discussing trading, I need to post a big giant disclaimer:
Investing in cryptocurrencies is extremely risky. You should assume 100% loss of capital is not only possible, but likely. I basically treat cryptocurrencies like options or futures: THEY ARE NOT FOR THE CONSERVATIVE PORTFOLIO. I will relate information that I know about trading cryptos, including the coins themselves and the mechanisms used to buy them (exchanges). I am not making any specific recommendations on the third parties I use for these activites. I mention them simply because I know about them. The crypto space is continually evolving and there is no way I can guarantee I have the latest or best information on any particular coin, third party service, or other information. I may hold coins I am recommending though I won't be selling any at the time I'm recommending a buy!
I'm here to hekp and get anyone on interested in crypto on there way. With that, we can move on to how you go about risking losing 100% of your capital
by Zero Hedge - April 10th, 2017 8:10 pm
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
In 2008, Satoshi Nakamoto invented bitcoin and the blockchain. For the first time in history, his invention made it possible to send money around the globe without banks, governments or any other intermediaries. The concept of the blockchain isn’t very intuitive. But still, many people believe it is a game changer.
The first 40 years of the Internet brought e-mail, social media, mobile applications, online shopping, Big Data, Open Data, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things.
Information technology is at the heart of everything today – good and bad.
Despite advances in privacy, security, and inclusion, one thing is still missing from the Internet: Trust.
Enter the blockchain.
Economist and filmmaker Manuel Stagars portrays this exciting technology in interviews with software developers, cryptologists, researchers, entrepreneurs, consultants, VCs, authors, politicians, and futurists from the United States, Canada, Switzerland, the UK, and Australia.
The Blockchain and Us is no explainer video of the technology. It gives a view on the topic far from hype, makes it accessible and starts a conversation about its wider implications.
For a deep dive, see all full-length interviews from the film here…
by Zero Hedge - March 17th, 2017 2:00 pm
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
Having rebounded rapidly from the ETF-decision disappointment, Bitcoin suffered another major setback overnight as Chinese regulators are circulating new guidelines that, if enacted, would require exchanges to verify the identity of clients and adhere to banking regulations.
A New York startup called Chainalysis estimated that roughly $2 billion of bitcoin moved out of China in 2016.
As The Wall Street Journal reports, the move to regulate bitcoin exchanges brings assurance that Chinese authorities will tolerate some level of trading, after months of uncertainty. A draft of the guidelines also indicates they aim to bring practices in line with how bitcoin is traded in other markets. The draft states that Chinese bitcoin exchanges would be subject to current banking and anti-money-laundering laws and be required to collect information to identify customers, according to people familiar with the matter. They say the draft, if implemented, would require exchanges to install systems for collecting and reporting suspicious trading activity to authorities; China’s central bank would be in charge of handling violations by the exchanges. The people said officials could still revise the guidelines, which were passed to exchanges in recent days.
Chinese investors have fled the market since authorities started scrutinizing bitcoin trading in the country, prompting exchanges to install trading fees and, in some cases, to suspend withdrawal of bitcoin from their platforms.
The central bank opened up investigations in January at the country’s three largest bitcoin exchanges, Huobi, OkCoin and BTCC, and delivered a terse warning last month that bitcoin platforms risk being shut down if they skirt rules on money laundering and foreign exchange.
In the past 30 days, yuan-denominated bitcoin trades accounted for 17% of global volumes, down from 97% in the past six months, according to data tracker Bitcoinity.
However, as Bitcoin has dropped, Ethereum has exploded in popularity since the JPMorgan-linked blockchain alliance news hit…
The 'other' virtual currency has seen its price explode to almost $50…
Massively outperforming Bitcoin
* * *
For those who are new to Ethereum and are curious about the distinctions between that technology and bitcoin, below is a quick primer courtesy of
by Zero Hedge - March 7th, 2017 8:42 pm
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
Among the big drivers behind the recent move higher in the price of bitcoin – in addition to the traditional "capital outflow" demand out of China – has been widespread hope that the SEC will approve the first bitcoin ETF. And contrary to our report from January that such a decision, and ETF, will be delayed substantially, today Coindesk writes that according to its sources, the ETF decision is expected, either affirming or denying, is expected by Friday.
The SEC has a March 11th internal deadline, Coindesk reported, to decide on the proposed rule change that would clear the way for the ETF, which would be the first of its kind. However, as the 11th falls on a Saturday, that decision will come before that date, "potentially before Friday", the source said. The decision would cap a more than three-year period since investors Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss first filed with the SEC in mid-2013.
In case of a favorable outcome, some analysts and traders have speculated that bitcoin markets could rise as a result, although considering the recent ramp in BTC's price in recent weeks, the news may have been priced in and holders may instead sell the news. Bitcoin's price has approached $1,300 in recent sessions, rising above $1,290 on March 3rd. However, the price has kept sliding, eventually experiencing a sharp drop on Tuesday as reported earlier on fresh concerns about China, when BTC briefly traded back under the price of one ounce of gold.
On the other hand, analysts have argued that, should the SEC reject the rule change that would allow the Bats Global Exchange to list the ETF, bitcoin's price could be negatively affected. Phil Bak, who was previously a New York Stock Exchange managing director and currently serves as CEO for ETF issuer ACSI Funds, told CoinDesk that, generally, the SEC seeks to avoid the appearance of "publicly rejecting an ETF." He went on to argue that, if the agency didn't plan on approving one of these funds, it would likely ask for the filing to be pulled ahead of any final decision. Yet according to Bak, the lack of such a pullback so close to the deadline could be driven by other factors specific
by Zero Hedge - February 24th, 2017 9:40 pm
Courtesy of Mike Shedlock (Mish)
Bitcoin hit an all-time high over $1200 today.
Traders are happy because the SEC is expected to rule on a Bitcoin ETF by March 11.
Meanwhile, Bloomberg reports China Is Developing its Own Digital Currency.
After assembling a research team in 2014, the People’s Bank of China has done trial runs of its prototype cryptocurrency. That’s taking it a step closer to becoming one of the first major central banks to issue digital money that can be used for anything from buying noodles to purchasing a car.
At the same time as it builds up its own capabilities, the PBOC is increasing scrutiny of bitcoin and other private digital tenders. It doesn’t want a bitcoin bubble to blow up. And since currencies have historically been issued by the state, not private players, it doesn’t want to cede the cryptocurrency space to companies it has no control over.
Chinese people have embraced online payments for just about everything. To buy a can of Coke, thirsty commuters scan QR codes on their smartphones rather than feed coins into a vending machine. At Lunar New Year gatherings, money is exchanged via a few presses on a smartphone instead of crisp notes handed over in red envelopes.
All of that poses a challenge to the PBOC’s status as the central bank of both the digital and physical realms. So if you can’t beat them, join them.
“Getting to know more precisely how much banks lend, where the money goes and the pace of credit creation is key to curbing money laundering and making monetary policy more effective,” said Duan Xinxing, vice president of Beijing-based OKCoin Co., one of the country’s biggest bitcoin exchanges. Issuing digital currency will make it easier for the PBOC to monitor risk in the financial system and track transactions economy-wide, he said.
OKCoin is among cryptocurrency exchanges that has recently taken steps to halt bitcoin withdrawals amid efforts to clamp down on capital outflows.
In January 2016, the PBOC said it will have its own cryptocurrency “soon,” but there has still been no formal start date announced. In the meantime, there’s been strong advocacy from
by Zero Hedge - February 22nd, 2017 9:18 am
Courtesy of Reggie Middleton at Zero Hedge
Credit Suisse has been posting cryptocurrency advisories over the last few weeks. They are quite one-sided, although couched in the appearance of objectivity. To explain why it's couched in the appearance of objectivity, and not actually objective, let me give you some background.
The Obama administration enacted a law known as the Fiduciary Rule, as per Investopedia:
The Department of Labor’s definition of a fiduciary demands that advisors act in the best interests of their clients, and to put their clients' interests above their own. It leaves no room for advisors to conceal any potential conflict of interest, and states that all fees and commissions must be clearly disclosed in dollar form to clients. The definition has been expanded to include any professional making a recommendation or solicitation — and not simply giving ongoing advice. Previously, only advisors who were charging a fee for service (either hourly or as a percentage of account holdings) on retirement plans were considered fiduciaries.
Although the Trump administration looks like it will repeal this law. the question is still begged, what conflcts of interests and hidden "gotchas" are not exposed? Well, here are videos that explain why banks will likely never be pro bitcoin, regardless of how tranformational it may be.
So, if banks are not going to benefit from Bitcoin, chances are their employees are not going to support bitcoin. Who are the most published bank employees? Analysts, to wit, Credit Suisse, stage left - Is Bitcoin Safe?
Bitcoin does carry some unique risks. The value of the cryptocurrency has been three times as volatile as the price of oil and 11 times more than the post-Brexit exchange rate between the dollar and the British pound.
With all due respect, this is a very ignorant, malinformed, incomplete viewpoint. I actually do mean that with respect intended. I'm not trying to maligh Credit Suisse, but… Look at this: 2+2=?.
Tell me, what do you get from that? If you said 4, then you
by Zero Hedge - February 17th, 2017 2:35 pm
By Reggie Middleton
(Originally published on Zero Hedge)
I will teach novices and experts alike how to fit Bitcoin into an investment portfolio safely and with the optimum risk-adjusted potential – along with step-by-step guides, instructions and tutorials.
This first part of the series starts with the basics, obtaining and managing your bitcoin.
What is Bitcoin?
First off, we need to know what Bitcoin is since most media pundits and even experienced financial types truly do not know. Bitcoin (capital "B") is a protocol driven network (very similar to that other popular protocol-based network, the Internet). This network is a blank tapestry upon which smart and creative actors can paint a cornucopia of applications (just like applications on the Internet). An early example from the Internet is email. It's now ubquitous, but back in the early 90s very few people knew about it or used it. Fast forward today, and not only does everybody use and know about it, it is accompanied by a cornucopia of considerably richer applications, ie. Facebook, YouTube, Netflix, etc.
The Bitcoin network's first and most popular application to date is bitcoin (with a lower case "b"). Bitcoin (that's "b"itcoin – with a lower case "b") is a digitial currency applictions that uses the Bitcoin blockchain and network as its transportation rails. It is a digital asset that can be a derivative of a physical asset or embedded in a physcial device. Of course, that begs the question, aren't nearly all stocks, bonds and currencies digital assets. Short answer is yes. So, we are focusing on the next generation of digital assets, those that exist on the blockchain – the Bitcoin blockchain in particular.
Acquisition, Part 1 – Preparing to Safely Recieve Bitcoin
Before you get you bitcoin you need to keep in mind that as a digital asset, it is susceptible to all of the maladies that befall other things digital, with the primary malady being hacking. The primary cause of hacks are lax password practice and malware. These are generally not diffeicult to proof agaisnt – at least in regards to lower level hackers.
- Makes sure you have a clean machine: Use AVG, Norton Anti-virus, Kapersky, etc.
by Zero Hedge - February 9th, 2017 10:03 am
Courtesy of Reggie Middleton (cross posted at Zero Hedge)
It’s being reported by Sputnik News and other sources that Japan has declared Bitcoin to be legal tender. Unfortunately, I have not been able to quickly confirm this through Japanese sources. The use of BTC as legal tender in one of the world’s leading economies is a big plus for Bitcoin, and likely to lead to a much more rapid pace of adoption. Volume is strong on increasing price.
Be aware that volume on exchanges doesn’t necessarily equate to gross transactions. There are OTC transactions and P2P transfers via the blockchain (see http://Veritaseum.com). There is one thing that is apparent, though. JPY is the new Bitcoin darling, replacing CNY in terms of BTC trade volume on exchanges.
In full disclosure, the blockchain doesn’t show this difference this morning, although it is very clear that CNY not only lost the 90% volume title, but is no more than 25% of US volume after the PBOC clamped down on KYC/AML and margin lending in Chinese bitcoin exchanges
We will be teaching institutions and serious investors how to:
invest directly in Bitcoin;
diversify risk and pursue alpha;
diversify exposure into other assets and asset classes directly through your bitcoin via smart contracts
eliminate credit and counterparty risk
and best practices for securing both your behavior and your bitcoin holdings.
Subscribe to BoomBustBlog now and learn how to our smart contracts system to invest in bitcoin and tens of thousands of other exposures.
by Zero Hedge - February 2nd, 2017 11:36 am
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
As the dollar continues to tumble (and amid China's quite period during Golden Week), Bitcoin has gently begun to shake off China 'probe' weakness and extend its gains once again. For the first time since January 5th, Bitcoin is trading above $1000…
by Zero Hedge - January 23rd, 2017 11:42 am
Courtesy of Zero Hedge
There is one reason why bitcoin quickly became the darling of HFT and various high speed algo traders operating out of China and the rest of the world: domestic transactions were "frictionless", as there were no fees on buys or sells. Until last night, that is, because as China's three largest bitcoin exchanges, BTCC, Huobi and OkCoin, all said in separate statements on their websites late on Sunday, starting Tuesday they will charge traders a flat fee of 0.2% per transaction. This is only the latest fallout from the recent crackdown on Chinese bitcoin exchanges whose activities have drawn increased scrutiny from the central bank.
Each of the statements said assessing fees will "further curb market manipulation and extreme volatility".
One of the reasons why China has dominated bitcoin trading volumes in recent years, in addition to the US of the digital currency to bypass capital controls, has been the absence of trading fees which encouraged volumes and boosted demand at Chinese bitcoin exchanges. However, when the price of bitcoin soared to near-record highs – as this website predicted would happen in the summer of 2015 – driven by a stampede of Chinese momentum chasers, it attracted attention from Chinese regulators. Helping the surge, was the collapse in the yuan which weakened 6.6% against the dollar, its worst performance since 1994 as local savers sought the relative "safety" of bitcoin relative to the renminbi.
The standoff between local bitcoin traders and exchanges on one hand, and regulators on other culminated on Jan. 11, when the People's Bank of China launched spot checks on BTCC, Huobi and OkCoin to look into a range of possible rule violations, amid increasing government efforts to stem capital outflows and relieve pressure on the yuan. According to Reuters, citing "a person familiar with the matter", the exchanges had not received direct instructions from the PBOC, but decided to introduce trading fees to align with its wishes to see the bitcoin market cool down.
So far, the impact of the new fees has been negligible, with the price of Bitcoin on the BTCChina exchange largely unchanged overnight.
And as one bitcoin bubble fizzles, a new one appears to be born.