After two and a half months of continual tumult, Bitcoin has finally begun to find a semblance of stability. Yet, a leading crypto trader claims that this lull will be short-lived, especially as long-term trendlines pressure crypto assets lower and lower.“Crypto Remains Weak,” Writes Fundstrat’s SluymerMere months after Tom Lee, managing director and head of research of Fundstrat, remarked that he wouldn’t be issuing explicit, time-bound price predictions, one of his coworkers cut out some time to analyze the crypto markets. Fundstrat’s in-house chartist, Rob Sluymer, who hasn’t shied away from talking Bitcoin previously, released a note to his clients regarding his analysis of digital assets.Related Reading: Tom Lee: Crypto Is Bent Not Broken, Plenty of Room to GrowAccording to Bloomberg, who obtained a copy of the note, the New York-headquartered Fundstrat believes CryptoFX’s large-cap, mid-cap, and small-cap advance/decline indices are on track to retest their mid-December 2018 lows, with a weak technical setup no less. Specifically touching on small-caps, meaning crypto assets under the ~$60 million market capitalization threshold, Sluymer remarked that the price structure for this subset “remains weak and appears vulnerable to a pending breakdown to lower lows.”While the analyst’s comments make it sound like lower lows are inbound, there shouldn’t be an immediate cause for alarm. More specifically, the aggregate value of all non-Bitcoin cryptocurrencies is still 14.5% above the lows seen on December 14th and 15th, when the crypto sector at large thought the sky was falling on their heads.Anyhow, Sluymer went on to paint a foreboding picture for Bitcoin. While he was hesitant to mention time frames in a bid to stay cohesive with company policy, he noted that a key price point to watch for the flagship cryptocurrency will be $3,100. In his eyes, if BTC breaks under its Q4 lows at ~$3,150, a move to $2,270 wouldn’t be unlikely, as that would indicate that the market hasn’t found a long-term floor just yet.The Fundstrat head technician isn’t the only one who believes that lower lows for BTC are a possibility, if not inbound. Murad Mahmudov, a prominent trader, recently claimed that in the following weeks, the asset could enter a state of “hell” in the coming months, especially if no noticeable uptrend is established. In fact, echoing his forecasts that NewsBTC has covered previously, Mahmudov drew attention to $1,700, claiming that BTC could briefly wick down to that level to establish a bottom.However, both Mahmudov and Sluymer drew attention to the $4,200 price level, explaining that a move above that level could abate bearish price action for a short period at the minimum.Yet, the overall tone touted by industry pundits still seems to be overtly bearish, especially as there are still scant catalysts to warrant a Bitcoin recovery off its yearly lows.Tom Lee: Bitcoin May Eclipse $25,000… EventuallyAlthough “HODLers” are likely nearing the point where surrender — capitulation — would be in order, just three weeks back, Tom Lee took to Fox News‘ business and finance segment to talk about Bitcoin’s long-term prospects. Surprisingly, Lee was bullish, and even mentioned a price level that he could see BTC breach, especially as the market begins to acknowledge the asset’s true value.Tom Lee remains optimistic.The Fundstrat head explained that he was disappointed with his early-2018 prediction of $25,000, citing the fact that BTC was dragged down by other cryptocurrencies’ struggle. This aside, he went on to touch on that auspicious price point, explaining that there’s a hunger, even thirst for an uncorrelated digital asset that isn’t only used for speculative purposes, but as a newfangled form of money and store of value too.Lee even noted that from a historical standpoint, BTC is doing just fine, as the asset hasn’t only survived after 70% to 80% drawbacks, but thrived afterward. This comes after he took to the stage of BlockShow Asia to simply claim that crypto is “bent, not broken,” subsequently adding that this nascent industry still touts staying power, as there are trillions of dollars of value transacted on Bitcoin year in and year out.In closing, the investor even remarked that this is the “golden time” to be in crypto, citing BTC’s move under its 200-day moving average as a seeming sign that accumulation would be logical.Featured Image from Shutterstock
Archives for February 7, 2019
The new AMD Radeon VII (gfx906) GPUs are about to start hitting the market any moment now with a recommended end user price of $699 USD in USA or 739 EURO in EU. We just got a tip that these new 7nm GPUs from AMD with 16GB HBM2 video memory are able to deliver about 90 MHS for Ehereum’s Ethash algorithm out of the box without any overclock. This is possible with the latest Claymore Dual GPU Miner v12.0, so really out of the box performance very close to the 90 MHS mark for Ethereum. So the new HBM2 memory with 4096-bit memory bus and 1000 MHz (effective 2000 MHz memory clock) seem to be doing quite well for memory intensive crypto algorithms.
We are of course still about to see what the performance for GPU intensive algorithms is going to be and this might also need some specific optimizations for the new GPUs in order to get the maximum performance. With the presence of 3840 stream processors the new Radeon VII GPUs should have plenty of raw power available for GPU-heavy lifting including, but not limited to crypto hashing. We are quite pleased to see the good memory performance for Ethash and expect good results for other algorithms as well, so hopefully very soon more performance data for crypto mining for the new AMD Radeon VII will surface…
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Researchers from South Korea’s central bank say issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC) could have negative ramifications for the economy.
The Bank of Korea (BoK) published a study on Thursday, which modeled how a CBDC issuance might affect on liquidity at commercial banks.
It found that if the public could access the theoretical digital currency directly, commercial banks’ demand deposits, or reserves, could be reduced – leaving them with a cash shortfall. That could eventually force them to compensate by raising interest rates on loans, the central bank explained.
“This has negative effects on financial stability, which increases the likelihood of bank panic in which commercial banks are short of cash reserves to pay out to depositors,” the report states.
According to CoinDesk Korea, report co-author Kwon Oh-Ik said that, if a CBDC is issued, “supplementary measures should be taken so that they do not adversely affect financial stability.”
In June 2018, the BoK said that issuing a CBDC could pose a “moral hazard” by adversely affecting monetary policy and destabilizing the economy.
The Bank of International Settlements (BIS), known as the central bank of central banks, also warned last spring that if any country’s central bank is looking to develop and launch a CBDC, it should “carefully weigh” the implications of doing so, especially as they relate to monetary policy and overall economic stability.
On the other hand, Christine Lagarde, managing director and chairwoman of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has encouraged the “exploration” of CBDCs in the light of decreasing demand for cash and rising preference for digital money.
A November research report from IBM found that most polled central banks believe they should issue a wholesale CBDC, although they were uncertain if blockchain can provide sufficient cost and efficiency benefits.
Bank of Korea image via Shutterstock
The latest Bminer 14.2.0 has just been released with experimental support for Cuckatoo31 (C31) algorithm being used by GRIN for Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GPUs with claimed performance of up to about 0.90 G/s on GTX 1080 Ti with stock settings. This seems pretty good, however we are currently unable to make the miner work properly under Windows 10 as we are getting an error about insufficient memory available on device and it seems other people are reporting the same issue (it is experimental support). Do note that GRIN mining support on NiceHash is not yet available for Bminer and that goes for both Cuckaroo29 and Cuckatoo31 algorithms, so you can instead use the latest GMiner for NiceHash.
We remind you that that Bminer is a closed source Nvidia GPU miner available for Linux and Windows in the form of pre-compiled binaries and that there is a 2% development fee for Grin, Beam, Bytom (BTM), Equihash and Zhash coins, 0.65% for Ethash and 1.3% for dual mining Ethash and Blake.
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- On Wednesday, bitcoin suffered its weakest UTC close in over seven weeks, reinforcing the bearish view put forward by the rejection at the 50-candle moving average (MA) on the 6-hour chart. The close at multi-week lows also dashed hopes of a falling wedge breakout.
- The cryptocurrency created a bearish outside reversal candle on the daily chart, opening the doors to the falling channel support, currently at $3,230.
- A strong move above the 50-candle moving average on the 6-hour chart, currently at $3,434 will likely weaken bearish pressures and yield a corrective bounce to resistance near $3,650.
With bitcoin (BTC) closing yesterday at the lowest level in 7.5 weeks, the gradual sell-off is showing no signs of abating.
On Wednesday, the leading cryptocurrency by market value ended (UTC) at $3,328 – the weakest daily close since Dec. 16 – according to Bitstamp data, dashing hopes of an upside break of the falling wedge pattern carved out over the last six weeks.
Further, it created a bearish lower high at the crucial resistance of the 50-candle moving average (MA) on the 6-hour chart. That average line has reversed several attempted corrective rallies over the last three weeks, as discussed yesterday.
As a result, the slow drip sell-off from December highs above $4,200 witnessed over the last six weeks is likely to continue. BTC could soon challenge recent lows near $3,300 and may extend the decline toward the low of $3,100 seen in December.
At press time, BTC is trading largely unchanged on the day at $3,380.
As seen above, yesterday’s high and low engulfed Tuesday’s price action. Essentially, BTC created a bearish outside candle, which indicates that the day began with optimism but ended on a pessimistic note. Put simply, the sell-on-rise mentality is still strong.
Hence, the cryptocurrency risks falling to the descending channel support, currently at $3,230.
Supporting that bearish case if the 14-day relative strength index of 38 and the downward sloping 20-day moving average (MA).
On the 6-hour chart, 50-candle MA has proved a tough nut to crack for close to three weeks. Hence, a convincing break above that average, currently at $3,434, may embolden the bulls, leading to a stronger rally toward the resistance at $3,658 – the high of the bearish gravestone doji created on Jan. 26.
Disclosure: The author holds no cryptocurrency assets at the time of writing.
Amidst all the suspicion that has followed the sudden closure of QuadrigaCX crypto exchange and cold wallets containing $150 million being inaccessible following the death of the company’s chief executive, Gerald Cotten, a hospital in India has confirmed that the CEO died while in its care.
According to Fortis Escorts Hospital, Cotten succumbed to a heart attack on December 9 last year. The Fortis Escorts Hospital is located in Jaipur, the capital of the northern Indian state of Rajasthan.
Per the Times of India, Cotten was declared dead in the evening at 7.26 PM. Cotten had also been suffering from Crohn’s disease, an inflammatory bowel disease which can sometimes cause life-threatening complications.
QuadrigaCX CEO Lasted Less Than a Day in Hospital
According to documents availed by the hospital, Cotten was admitted to the healthcare facility on December 8. He was complaining of vomiting, watery stools and crampy abdominal pain. Additionally, he was also feeling feverish. Doctors diagnosed ‘septic shock, perforation, peritonitis, intestinal obstruction’ upon admission. Cotten was in the company of Jennifer Kathleen Margaret Robertson, his wife, when he was admitted.
The next day after being declared dead, police in Jaipur handed Robertson a no objection certificate – a document allowing the collection and transportation of a body – allowing her to fly Cotton’s body to Nova Scotia, Canada. The local municipality also issued a death certificate.
A Lot of Questions Left Unanswered by QuadrigaCX Bitcoin Exchange
Despite the best efforts of the hospital, it is not certain that this will quell speculation regarding the Canadian crypto exchange. Already, rumors have been rife on social media that Cotten faked his own death as part of an exit scam. Some of the things that are raising suspicion include the fact that more than a month passed before the exchange announced his death.
Additionally, Cotten is said to have filed a will just 12 days prior to his death. Cotton’s last will and testament is dated November 27, 2018. All his assets were left to his wife. She was also named as his estate’s executor.
On social media attention has also been drawn to the fact that the CEO’s name on the death certificate is misspelt. Rather than Cotten, it is spelt as ‘Cottan’.
A cryptocurrency researcher has also revealed that he found no evidence that QuadrigaCX had a cold wallet. As CCN reported the researcher analyzed transaction IDs and aggregated wallet addresses to draw the conclusion.
Where’s the ‘Missing’ $150 Million? Crypto Exchange QuadrigaCX’s Fiasco Gets Weirder with New Research https://t.co/yRsv6Z3CdJ
— CCN.com (@CryptoCoinsNews) February 5, 2019
This comes as a court in Nova Scotia granted the cryptocurrency exchange a 30-day stay. Consequently this will effectively prevent any lawsuits from being filed against the bitcoin firm. According to the exchange, the move will ‘to allow us the opportunity to resolve outstanding financial issues that have affected our ability to serve our customers’.
Ernst & Young to Monitor QuadrigaCX Proceedings
Big four accounting firm Ernst & Young was picked to oversee the proceedings, according to a statement released by the exchange:
With this filing, the Court has appointed a monitor, Ernst & Young Inc., an independent third party to oversee these proceedings as we make every effort to address our customer obligations. Filing for creditor protection allows us to work diligently through the process, and to try ensure the viability of our company.
Fortis Escorts, a private hospital in the Indian city of Jaipur, has released details about the death of Gerald Cotten, CEO of Canadian cryptocurrency exchange QuadrigaCX.
In a statement shared with CoinDesk on Thursday, Fortis Escorts said that Cotten was admitted to the hospital on Dec. 8, 2018 at 9:45 p.m. IST (16:15 UTC) and died of cardiac arrest at around 7:26 p.m. IST (13:56 UTC) on Dec. 9, 2018.
Two separate documents released previously – a statement of death issued from J.A. Snow Funeral Home and a death certificate issued from the Government of Rajasthan’s Directorate of Economics and Statistics – also state that Cotten died on Dec. 9, 2018 in Jaipur, the state capital of Rajasthan.
Cotten was brought to the hospital in a “critical condition” with “pre-existing Crohn’s disease and was on monoclonal antibody therapy every 8th week,” the statement from Fortis Escorts reads. At the time of admission, Cotten was diagnosed to be suffering from septic shock and other serious issues relating to his exacerbated condition.
“On 9th December, 2018, the patient suffered a cardiac arrest but was revived by CPR [cardiopulmonary resuscitation]. The patient heart condition continued to deteriorate and the patient suffered a second cardiac arrest at 6:30 p.m. [13:00 UTC],” the statement from the hospital states.
“Despite the best efforts of our clinicians the patient could not be revived and was declared dead approximately at 7:26 pm. All standard medical procedures and guidelines were followed to treat the patient. The information of his death was communicated to the relevant authorities.”
Cotten’s death is at the center of the concerns and rumors surrounding the QuadrigaCX exchange, which went offline last week owing millions to its thousands of customers because the CEO had died apparently without leaving a way for staff to access the computer storing its funds.
In a sworn affidavit filed Jan. 31 with the Nova Scotia Supreme Court, Jennifer Robertson, identified as the widow of QuadrigaCX founder Gerald Cotten, said the exchange owes its customers roughly 250 million CAD (US$190 million) in both cryptocurrency and fiat.
The exchange has since sought creditor protection in the court. On Tuesday, a Supreme Court judge granted the exchange its application, giving it a 30-day stay of proceedings to try and recover any cryptocurrencies, as well as find other avenues for reimbursing customers.
Canadian flag image via Shutterstock
After a difficult 2018 characterised by sluggish sales and further loss of ground to multiplayer juggernaut ‘Fortnite‘, EA has taken another huge hit after newly released earnings figures of $262 million for Q3 2018 showed that the company missed its $1.38 billion revenue target for 2018 by some way.
The new figures showed a $90 million revenue shortfall against its projected annual revenue as the gaming giant, famously rated as America’s most hated gaming company made $1.29 billion in 2018.
While this figure is 11 percent up on the 2017 figure, it underlines the extent to which EA is losing ground to competitors like Epic Games which owns Fortnite. In a year that saw it release the long-awaited “Battlefield V” title and continue consolidating its growing live services revenue streams, the company’s entire income was still substantially less than the $2.4 billion recorded by Fortnite alone over the same period.
Following the news of the missed revenue target, EA shares dipped a massive 17 percent, with the company acknowledging that increased competition for the holiday gaming market segment with Fortnite and Activision’s ‘Call of Duty’ was responsible for the doldrums.
Could Apex Legends be the Fortnite Slayer?
Over the years, EA has gained a notorious reputation for its aggressive pushing of in-game purchases and a perceived excessive number of playing hours required to scale different levels of its ‘free’ games. the Canadian company also has a reputation for swallowing smaller gaming companies and running them in a way that some say amounts to deliberately grinding them into the ground. The surprise announcement of “Apex Legends” seems to be EA’s answer to Fortnite in what promises to be its biggest battle to date.
Expected to replace the Titanfall franchise, Apex Legends reportedly shares a number of close similarities with Fortnite. Already, initial reports from early testers and reviewers suggest that the game may be just what the doctor ordered for EA in its fight against what has become one of the most successful gaming titles of all time. Of course, there is quite a gap between having a decent game and having a product that can match the Fortnite’s 200 million players or the estimated 124 million hours spent watching Fortnite streams on Twitch in 2018.
According to reviews, Apex Legends has clearly worked on doing better than Fortnite in some key areas including gameplay and interaction between players. Comparing the features of both games, a reviewer quoted in PC Gamer says:
Honestly, playing public duos or squads in Fortnite is hell. When you, an adult, are learning new words from someone that clearly hasn’t entered puberty yet, something is wrong. [On Apex Legends], the ping system guarantees you’ll never have to talk to a racist preteen.
If Apex Legends is able to deliver on its promise and EA effectively monetizes the opportunity, it just might be the saviour for the gaming giant that America loves to hate. Either way, what seems clear is that the ‘freemium’ model is increasingly likely to dominate the future of gaming.
Featured image from Electronic Arts.
Switzerland’s top stock exchange, SIX, aims to roll out a blockchain platform to speed up trading later this year.
Reuters reported Feb. 6 that SIX chairman Romeo Lacher said the planned new SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) will initially operate alongside the existing SIX platform.
Currently, a trade takes several steps to complete, which can take days. However, using a distributed ledger knocks out two of the stages and can reduce the trade lifecycle to fractions of a second, Reuters added.
The report cites officials as having said that SDX will launch offering trading in certain stocks, with a wider range of stocks and bonds to follow. Exchange-traded funds could ultimately be on offer too, and possibly even tokenized physical assets such as art.
Lacher told the news source that the SIX supervisory board will “probably” make the final decision late in the summer, as it is still working out legal and regulatory issues with Switzerland’s financial markets regulator, FINMA.
SIX first announced the new DLT-based platform last July, with CEO Jos Dijsselhof saying at the time: “This is the beginning of a new era for capital markets infrastructures. For us it is abundantly clear that much of what is going on in the digital space is here to stay and will define the future of our industry.”
Once the new platform is live, SIX plans to use it itself to raise funds later in the year, according to Reuters.
“We want to start with our own security token offering,” Lacher said.
Last November, SIX announced it would launch the first ever exchange-traded product (ETP) tracking multiple cryptocurrencies. The Amun Crypto ETP goes by the ticker symbol HODL, and tracks an index the “top 5 crypto assets in terms of market cap and liquidity.”
SIX stock exchange image via Shutterstock