Law enforcement authorities can shut down bitcoin anytime, according to Bloomberg Digital’s executive editor Joe Weisenthal.The media talent warned institutions against creating bitcoin-based investment products, stating that they could become a tool to take capital from fiat markets. Citing Bitcoin exchange-traded funds, Weisenthal said no regulators would want to approve fiat onramps to pump money into the bitcoin ecosystem. First, the move would make fiat unattractive to investors. And second, it would increase the amount of illicit financial transactions.Weisenthal thinks bitcoin has only one critical use case: to facilitate trades that the governments and regulators – or “the MAN” – do not want anyone to make. That makes the cryptocurrency an ideal tool designed to serve criminals – and criminals only. Creating new markets to inject more into bitcoin, therefore, would increase the number of financial crimes. So, one way or another, an average law enforcement agency would attempt to get rid of bitcoin once and all.“If you’re building or launching these institutionally-grade products, how sure are you that down the road regulators won’t come in and shut it all down,” questioned Weisenthal. “There is so much interest in this space, but is anyone thinking this through?”The Man Will Come After Big Bitcoiners?The statements were a part of a newsletter that showcased bitcoin as an ecosystem run by two kinds of users: speculators and transactors. Weisenthal said the bitcoin protocol works when certain people expect more massive profits out of their so-called bitcoin investments – or when they use bitcoin to conduct transactions away from the prying eyes of regulators. Both kinds of users, wrote Weisenthal, compliment each other.In today’s @Markets newsletter, I wrote about how the point of Bitcoin is do to the transactions that THE MAN doesn’t want you to do (including illegal transactions). And the allowance of a Bitcoin ETFs would essentially be a big subsidy to this market https://t.co/e5TYtjIuOw pic.twitter.com/fkMbexuv8v— Joe Weisenthal (@TheStalwart) October 17, 2019The introduction of Wall Street-level products, meanwhile, would boost the number in both kinds: speculators and transactors. Weisenthal added:“If you’re in the business of creating institutional onramps to crypto, you have to be cognizant of the risk that one day regulators wake up and ask: Wait, why did we provide a gateway to provide liquidity into [the] space whose express purpose is to let people evade The Man?”The Bitcoin Community’s Response“This is wildly inaccurate,” replied Anthony Pompliano, co-founder and partner at Morgan Creek Digital Assets, about Weisenthal’s assessment. He added:“You’re claiming that non-censorship is the only value prop of Bitcoin. What about the non-seizure element? What about the disinflationary monetary supply? Or the sound money element? Or pseudonymity? Please stop writing nonsense & misinformation.”Larry Cermak of the Block, meanwhile, agreed with Weisenthal, differing only with one point about the “types of bitcoin investors.”“I would say that there is a third (small) group of people that buy bitcoin (or dollars/dai if it’s available) to hedge against the government’s corruption and inflation. I wouldn’t classify these people as speculators. But I agree with everything else.”
Bitcoin was attempting to hold $8,000 as support on Thursday after it slipped briefly below the said level yesterday.The benchmark cryptocurrency surged by 0.83 percent, or $66.14, to trade at $8,059.68. The move uphill came after a depressive price action on Wednesday that took the bitcoin price below the $8,000 support level. At its intraday lowest, the cryptocurrency was trading at $7,908.86.Bitcoin attempts a weak pullback after dropping below $8,000 on Wednesday | Image credits: TradingView.comWeak US Economic DataThe bitcoin’s loss and subsequent mild recovery came amidst the release of vital US economic data on Wednesday morning. The retail sales report showed a drop of 0.3 percent, marking the first contraction in months. It raised concerns over the deteriorating health of the US economy, which could prompt the Federal Reserve to announce fresh rate cuts at its next meeting.The weaker-than-expected economic data pushed the US stocks lower on Wednesday. The benchmark S&P 500 index plunged by 0.2 percent at the close. The sentiment towards risk-on assets spread into the Asian markets today. Japan’s Topix was down 0.3 percent while Australia’s S&P ASX 200 plunged by 0.2 percent. Meanwhile, in China, the CSI 300 of Shanghai- and Shenzhen-listed stocks were up by 0.1 percent.Brexit Deal ReachedBitcoin held on to its gains also as UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that they had reached a Brexit deal with the European Union. The politician confirmed in a tweet:“We’ve got a great new deal that takes back control — now Parliament should get Brexit done on Saturday so we can move on to other priorities like the cost of living, the NHS, violent crime and our environment.”We’ve got a great new deal that takes back control — now Parliament should get Brexit done on Saturday so we can move on to other priorities like the cost of living, the NHS, violent crime and our environment #GetBrexitDone #TakeBackControl— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) October 17, 2019The new propelled pound to register its best month in months. The sterling surged about 0.70 percent against the dollar after the London market open. Meanwhile, the FTSE 100 index jumped by 0.60 on the Brexit news.In Europe, demand for risk-on assets climbed as well. The benchmark Stoxx 600 surged o.70 percent.Meanwhile, a Brexit deal expects to spell trouble on Bitcoin, which investors long perceived as a safe-haven asset should the UK-EU negotiations go south. Bitcoin rival Gold is already dropping on the news, down about 0.27 percent now.Moody BitcoinAs NewsBTC noted earlier, Bitcoin’s rate against the pound was forming an interim negative correlation with the pound’s performance against the US dollar. Excerpts:“Bitcoin’s gains in the GBP markets are coinciding with the GBP’s losses against the US dollar – or vice versa, at least in the last seven days. The most visible correlation is GBP/USD’s gains on October 11 and 12, wherein the pair surged by as much as 4.20 percent. On the same days, bitcoin dropped by up to 7.62 percent against the pound.”Meanwhile, speculators believe bitcoin could rise after Fed cut benchmark rates. Lately, the cryptocurrency has reacted mildly to rate cut events. On September 18, for instance, bitcoin was unfazed by the central bank’s announcement of pushing lending rates down to 1-3/4 to 2 percent. The cryptocurrency dropped by more than 6 percent a day after the FOMC statement.
Craig S Wright, an Australian computer scientist who claims that he created billions of dollars worth of payment protocol Bitcoin, accused Satoshi Nakamoto of plagiarizing his paper.The Bitcoin SV founder stressed that he is the original author of Bitcoin’s whitepaper during CC Forum in London. According to eyewitness Toni Vays, a famous cryptocurrency trader, who was also available at the event, Wright did not offer proof that could substantiate his claims. Instead, he said he would need to win a court case before the university allows him to release the so-called real Bitcoin whitepaper.So CSW “FakeToshi” just admitted on stage that Satoshi plagiarized his paper from 2008 that the university is not releasing until he wins the court case 😂.
* I’m sure someone has the video pic.twitter.com/WnAbrvapEB— Tone Vays [Bali – Financial Summit] (@ToneVays) October 16, 2019According to Wright’s earlier statements, bitcoin’s creation was the effort of a team, not an individual. He had claimed that he was an integral part of the group that conceived the cryptocurrency. Nevertheless, Wright, on many occasions, failed to provide cryptographic keys of messages signed digitally by the real Satoshi Nakamoto during the early days of Bitcoin. His failure to prove his involvement led many to believe that Wright was a scammer.In February 2018, the estate of Dave Kleiman (now deceased) also initiated a lawsuit against Wright for allegedly stealing US$5,118,266,427.50 worth of bitcoin. The judge for the case last month ordered Wright to hand all the bitcoin to the brother of Dave Kleiman, Ira. If Wright had produced that bitcoin, he would have proven his involvement in the Bitcoin project. But he did not, leading many to say that he did not even have those tokens.The case also revealed that Wright forged Dave’s signatures to steal the bitcoin – a similar argument he is now making against Satoshi Nakamoto.Community Laughs It OffWright’s latest stunt drew canny reactions from the cryptocurrency community. A Twitterati joked about Wright’s earlier statements, saying that he claimed he is Satoshi Nakamoto and now he is referring the same name as if it is a third person.“So he plagiarised his own paper,” wondered JJ.So he plagiarised his own paper? pic.twitter.com/BOuF9dfjTv— JJ (@lordhodl1) October 16, 2019Litecoin creator Charlie Lee, meanwhile, added:So the latest claim is that Satoshi is a fraud?! LMAO 😂— Charlie Lee [LTC⚡] (@SatoshiLite) October 16, 2019Word ManipulationOther eyewitnesses accused Vays of taking Wright’s words out of context. Diego SV, a hardcore Bitcoin SV follower, clarified:“In the fireside chat, CSW refers to the looming McCormack case and how his paper from 2008 will come out which shows great chunks of this is identical to the 2009 Bitcoin whitepaper. He clearly says this either proves I am Satoshi or Satoshi plagiarised me.”
Bitcoin was trading in negative territory on Wednesday as a broader market focus remained glued on Brexit and other critical macroeconomic events.Bitcoin price slips as speculators/investors shift focus elsewhere | Image credits: TradingView.comThe benchmark cryptocurrency slipped 0.12 percent to trade at $8,152.92, continuing its choppy actions seen after the last significant drop on September 24. The lack of upside bias in the bitcoin market was visible in the performance of rival cryptocurrencies. Almost all the top altcoins surged slightly against bitcoin on Wednesday, indicating traders’ conflict. Bitcoin SV, in particular, emerged as the top performer, rising more than 6 percent against bitcoin on a 24-hour live timeframe.Brexit, China’s Capital Injection in FocusBitcoin’s losses came on the day China surprised traders with a sudden injection of $28 billion into the financial system. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) added the said amount through its medium-term lending facility to banks. The injection came ahead of the release of Chinese economic data coming Friday, hinting it would show a further slowdown in the domestic market.US-China #tradewar aftermath: during the first nine months of this year, Chinese imports of American goods were sharply down 26.4% at $90.6 billion. China’s exports to the United States were off 10.7% at $312 billion. pic.twitter.com/qpv3Q5vWut— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) October 16, 2019China’s policymaking on yuan has typically assisted in boosting bitcoin’s demand. Domestic traders start fleeing from the national currency into assets they perceive as safe-havens. During the escalation of the trade war with the US in Q2/2019, bitcoin surged impressively, showing a negative correlation with yuan. While the $28 billion injection – surprising as it was – did not impact the yuan’s value against the US dollar during Wednesday’s trade, the move left possibilities of a new bitcoin upside action.Meanwhile, in the West, Brexit continued to affect market sentiments all across the European and the UK. Talks resumed between negotiators after they missed Tuesday’s midnight deadline. Hopes of UK PM Boris Johnson delivering a Brexit before October is high ahead of a crucial two-day European Council summit starting Thursday. Failure to do so would put further pressure on the European and British economy, a move that could move investors away from risk-on trades.Fingers CrossedAnalysts within the cryptocurrency space project Brexit as a bullish event for Bitcoin. New York-based asset management firm Grayscale Investments noted occasional correlations between Brexit and Bitcoin. In a report published in June, it said:“On the day of the announcement, we witnessed a broad-based selloff across both fiat currencies and risk assets as the market attempted to digest whether Brexit would portend the disintegration of the European Union. During the knee-jerk, one-day global selloff, Bitcoin was a top-performing asset, boasting a return of 7.1% on strong volume, versus an average of -2.1% for the rest of the group. Once again, we watched Bitcoin outperform other perceived safe-haven assets including gold, the Japanese yen (JPY), and global bonds.”Nevertheless, bitcoin lately failed to behave as a go-to instrument for institutional traders amidst hard economic events. The ongoing turbulence in China, coupled with central banks’ easing policies and the US-China trade war, are no more behaving as a bullish for the cryptocurrency.“I’m not so sure that it’s a safe haven asset yet, but I do think that it’s starting to act like one,” said Nelson Minier, head of OTC sales at Kraken. “I think that people are starting to portfolio manage, are starting to come in slowly. And when the market is getting shaky you saw Bitcoin rise, I mean, you wouldn’t see that before, it was trading like a risky asset.”
Facebook’s plan to launch Libra came under further pressure after its partners Visa, Mastercard, Paypal, and Stripe announced that they were leaving the digital currency project. And as it turned out, there was some political pushing involved.Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) sent letters to the chief executive officers of Visa, Mastercard, and Stripe, wherein they asked the trio to quit Facebook’s Libra project. The politicians iterated that the social media giant had failed to respond to regulatory concerns related to money laundering, terrorist financing, economic stability, and monetary policy. They further reminded the executives about Facebook’s track of record of misusing users’ data.“Your companies should be extremely cautious about moving ahead with a project that will foreseeably fuel the growth in global criminal activity,” the senators wrote.The language turned threatening as both Schatz and Brown warned Visa CEO Alfred F. Kelly Jr., Stripe CEO Patrick Collinson, and Mastercard CEO and president Ajaypal Singh Banga of consequences should they not quit Libra. The senators intimidated the trio that they would impose additional scrutiny if they decide to move against their recommendations.“If you take this on, you can expect a high level of scrutiny from regulators not only on Libra-related payment activities, but on all payment activities,” they wrote.Coinbase CEO Bashes US SenatorsFacebook did not provide any statement on the matter. But Brian Armstrong, the chief executive of San Francisco-based Coinbase cryptocurrency exchange, strongly objected to the way lawmakers went after Libra members. In a thread published on Sunday, Armstrong called the senators’ behavior “un-American,” adding that they both were resorting to “intimidation tactics.”“[It] doesn’t matter what you think of Libra. If it’s not a useful tool or innovation, people won’t use it. Why the need for the intimidation tactics? This would be called anti-competitive/monopolistic behavior if any private company did it,” – Armstrong tweeted.“Do we want to have a centrally planned economy, or let 1,000 ideas be tried in a free market to see which ones break through and deliver real value? Breakthroughs are by definition contrarian ideas, otherwise they would have already have been tried.”Avivah Litan, vice president at Gartner Research, raised similar concerns. In her interview with CNBC, the analyst noted that governments are afraid of losing their authority to emerging technology projects like Libra. She also mentioned bitcoin, a non-sovereign asset, for scaring governments with its potential to replace all their monopoly.“In the case of Libra, you replace central authority with task force authority and big tech authority. In the case of Bitcoin, you just replace all central authority,” said Litan.Governments are threatened by both Libra & Bitcoin, says @avivahl. “In the case of Libra you replace central authority with task force authority and big tech authority. In the case of Bitcoin you just replace all central authority.” pic.twitter.com/KpEV4CR17V— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) October 14, 2019
UK-based FXCM Group has introduced a new bitcoin trading service right around the time when investors weigh the possibility of a hard Brexit.The forex brokerage giant announced in a press release published on Monday that it is launching CryptoMajor. It is a basket that contains five popular cryptocurrencies – Bitcoin, Ether, XRP, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin – in equal proportions. CryptoMajor behaves as a single unit representing the combined value of the said assets. It means FXCM users would be able to collate and offload multiple cryptocurrencies at one go, without the need to manage each one of them independently.Brendan Callan, the chief executive officer of FXCM, treats CryptoMajor as an ideal hedging risk management tool for retail traders. He projected the basket as a “great opportunity” for traders who want to start trading cryptocurrencies but do not want “to risk too much exposure.” “Trading a basket of cryptocurrencies means our users are freed from the hassle of constantly monitoring the markets,” Callan said.Brexit FearsFXCM’s announcement arrived on the day when Pound slipped 0.71 percent against the US dollar. The drop, in turn, came on the back of pessimism surrounding Brexit. European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s deal is too complicated and needs more time. That put clouds over Johnson’s promise to deliver Brexit before October 31.GBP/USD down 0.71% on Brexit Fears | Image credits: TradingView.comThe news erased part of the gains Pound, as well as the UK stocks, had made at the end of the last week. Strategists at ING called the downside correction a “reality check” for Brexit bulls, adding that the sterling is now under threat of a further price breakdown.“GBP gains have, in part, been caused by meaningful short speculative positioning, exaggerating the effect of the news flow,” they explained.Holger Schmieding, the chief economist of Berenberg Bank, further stressed:“Striking a deal in time for the EU summit on 17-18 October and getting it passed by the U.K. parliament in an extraordinary Saturday session on 19 October poses a huge challenge with a highly uncertain outcome, to put it mildly. Also, the EU may need a technical extension to ratify the deal on its side anyway.”Meanwhile, with Callan mainly confirming on the “risk” part of the bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, it is safe to assume that FXCM is looking to make CryptoMajor an attractive alternative for CFD traders who might want to ignore Brexit-hit markets.No Base Currency SpecifiedFXCM did not reveal the base currency for the CryptoMajor basket in its announcement. The brokerage, which offers three similar baskets, typically uses the US dollar as its underlying currency to value the different assets. FXCM would likely employ the dollar for the crypto basket, considering the brokerage has a presence all across the globe.
Bitcoin was inching higher on Monday in the UK markets as Pound gave up some part of its last week’s sharp gains.Bitcoin shows upside sentiment as the Pound drops to 1-month low | Image credits: TradingView.comThe cryptocurrency surged by 0.76 percent against the sterling as of 1005 UTC to trade at £6,627.90. The minor surge came after the pound dropped by 0.68 percent against the US dollar. The sum of all negativities lied with the statements issued by the European Union on Brexit. Michel Barnier, EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, told press on Sunday that UK president Boris Johnson’s plans to divorce Europe by October 31 while avoiding a hard border with Ireland were too complicated.The statement impacted the UK market as it opened on Monday. With sterling down, UK stocks also gave some part of its last week’s gains. That was unusual for the benchmark FTSE 100, which typically rises when pound slides. Today, that was not the case. FTSE 100 and sterling both fell in tandem, showing that investors were pulling out their capital ahead of Johnson’s first Queen Speech scheduled today.Strategists associated with ING said in a note that Monday’s drop is a “reality check” for Brexit bulls. Excerpts from their statement:“GBP gains have, in part, been caused by meaningful short speculative positioning, exaggerating the effect of the news flow. With the market possibly getting ahead of itself, the pound is now vulnerable to a sell-off should the talks break down again.”Growing Correlation with BitcoinMeanwhile, bitcoin’s gains in the GBP markets are coinciding with the GBP’s losses against the US dollar – or vice versa, at least in the last seven days. The most visible correlation is GBP/USD’s gains on October 11 and 12, wherein the pair surged by as much as 4.20 percent. On the same days, bitcoin dropped by up to 7.62 percent against the pound.GBP/USD shows a negative correlation with BTC/GBP | Image credits: TradingView.comNo other evidence indicates a negative relationship between the two pairs. It might be less likely for mainstream investors to treat bitcoin as a hedging instrument against the Brexit uncertainty. But traders inside the cryptocurrency market could enter open positions after taking cues from the pound’s interim bias. A similar sentiment engulfed the bitcoin market during yuan’s devaluation against the Q2’s US-China trade war escalation.Pound Eyes DropBitcoin’s probability of striking gains is looking better, with both the EU and noted market analysts predicting an extension for Brexit deal. Holger Schmieding and Kallum Pickering, chief economist and senior U.K. economist of Berenberg Bank, said in an investor note Monday:“Striking a deal in time for the EU summit on 17-18 October and getting it passed by the U.K. parliament in an extraordinary Saturday session on 19 October poses a huge challenge with a highly uncertain outcome, to put it mildly. Also, the EU may need a technical extension to ratify the deal on its side anyway.”An adjunct is the least Johnson needs, which has promised the UK citizens a deal or no-deal Brexit before October 31. If the Prime Minister goes ahead with the least-favorite route of divorcing the EU, the ramification could fall on the country’s economy. According to estimates from the UK in a Changing Europe, a hard-deal Brexit could reduce the GDP by 7 percent.That would eventually come to haunt the GBP.Investors then have a likelihood of parking their capital into stocks, bonds, or perceived hedging assets. Bitcoin, given its recent correlation with the GBP/USD pair, could also get a push from the mainstream market.[Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article are not investment advice.]
The bitcoin market is 90 percent retail-based. And that makes Fidelity Investments nervous about its very-own digital currency offerings, says the company’s Personal Investing President, Kathleen Murphy.The business executive said in an interview with CNBC Squawk Box that bitcoin is a far riskier asset for retail investors that it is for institutional investors. She admitted that while Fidelity’s chief executive officer, Abigail Johnson, is a huge fan of cryptocurrency, the company is still cautious about how it wants to offer its bitcoin custodian and trading services to investors.Murphy confirmed that Fidelity is embracing cryptocurrencies because they want to understand it further. And while doing so, they want to be innovative and thoughtful about the digital currency space.Nevertheless, the firm does not want to offer trading services on a retail level, Murphy said, adding that they “want to be very careful about making sure that investors that REALLY are not institutional investors don’t make a mistake with cryptocurrencies.”We are very careful about where we offer crypto, says Fidelity Personal Investing President Kathleen Murphy. “We want to be very careful that investors don’t –who really aren’t institutional investors don’t make a mistake with cryptocurrency.” #bitcoin pic.twitter.com/VSXGmUPcB3— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) October 11, 2019Big Firms Need Big ClientsMurphy’s statements came two days after the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rejected the Bitcoin ETF application filed by Bitwise Asset Management and NYSE Arca. In one of its first descriptive orders, SEC provided a comprehensive view on why it does not want to approve a bitcoin-based derivative. The securities regulator complained about how a majority of bitcoin market volume is outside the US without any regulatory oversight, which makes it susceptible to price manipulation. It also raised concerns about bitcoin’s use in illicit activities.Fidelity’s bitcoin products, nevertheless, are not ETFs. The Boston firm announced in May that it would offer straightforward cryptocurrency trading services to institutional investors only. In those regards, Fidelity also launched a cold storage custodianship service, a regulated digital vault that would store cryptocurrencies to back on- and off-ramp trading on its platform.“We currently have a select set of clients we’re supporting on our platform,” Fidelity spokeswoman Arlene Roberts told Bloomberg in May. “We will continue to roll out our services over the coming weeks and months based on our clients’ needs, jurisdictions, and other factors. Currently, our service offering is focused on Bitcoin.”No Institutional Investors for Bitcoin?Institutional interest, particularly in bitcoin, has dwindled since May. Open interest in CME’s bitcoin futures contracts, which cryptocurrency market treats as a gauge to measure the presence of big investors, dropped severely since June. Atop that, bitcoin underperformed as a safe-haven asset against a string of poor macroeconomic catalysts, showing that investors are not looking at the cryptocurrency in times of crisis.ICYMI: Thursday’s Bakkt Bitcoin Monthly Futures:💸 Traded contracts: 109 (-51%)
📉 Day before: 224
🚀 All time high: 224Follow @BakktBot for realtime updates. pic.twitter.com/UXiva9wxVJ— Bakkt Volume Bot (@BakktBot) October 11, 2019Recently, the launch of the first physically-settled bitcoin futures by Bakkt also further with a cold response. The ICE-backed platform processed only 149 monthly contracts on its first day, revealing that institutional investors are focusing more on the outcome of the ongoing US-China trade talks, Brexit, and other global factors.
Bitcoin struggled to maintain gains on Friday as investors processed the possibility of an optimistic trade deal and Brexit.The benchmark cryptocurrency was trading at $8,373.96, down 2.49 percent as of 11:03 UTC. Its downside sentiment came on the back of an unbiased Thursday, wherein its opening and closing price was almost the same. The rate also remained capped under technical barriers, represented by a long-term moving average indicator in the chart below. Meanwhile, sentiments arising from the rejection of yet another Bitcoin exchange-traded fund in the US kept potential buyers at a distance.Bitcoin capped by the red curve (200-day MA) | Image credits: TradingView.comBrexit meets US-China Trade WarBitcoin’s losses occurred on the day when two of the global market’s most significant concerns hinted at a resolution. On the US-China trade war, President Donald Trump said that their discussion with the Chinese is “going very well” shortly after Beijing offered to purchase more agricultural products from the US. People associated with the matter revealed that other negotiations, including currency provisions and intellectual property, were also on the discussion table.Big day of negotiations with China. They want to make a deal, but do I? I meet with the Vice Premier tomorrow at The White House.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 10, 2019A breakthrough in the US-China trade dispute would have Trump meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ meeting in Chile next month.Meanwhile, investors welcomed Trump’s comments on the dispute. Their interest in the risk-on assets like equities peaked at its highest this week, with the US benchmark S&P 500 closing Thursday 0.6 percent higher, while its futures are indicating a 0.5 percent increase when the Wall Street opens on Friday.Then there were positive developments in an overly-stretched Brexit issue. UK prime minister Boris Johnson and his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar said on Thursday that they could achieve a Brexit deal by the end of the month. The news sent Pound to its best levels since September 25. Meanwhile, UK’s FTSE 100 and 250 index each delivered impressive gains, rising 0.13 and 2.53 percent, respectively, on Brexit hopes.
Donald Tusk, the council president of the EU, welcomed the move, noting that it could open the possibilities of new agreements between the UK and Europe. Excerpts from his press briefing:
“I have received promising signals from the Taoiseach that a deal is still possible. Technical talks are taking place in Brussels as we speak. Of course, there is no guarantee of success and the time is practically up. But even the slightest chance must be used.”
Bitcoin Got Sidelined
Bitcoin, which earlier served as a backup asset against the US-China trade war and Brexit, behaved negatively to the resolve. Kelvin Kelly, the co-founder of Delphi Digital – a New York-based data research firm, noted that bitcoin worked a safe-haven asset earlier this year but dovish developments on the central policies front could put the cryptocurrency in the league of risk-on assets.
— TD Ameritrade Network (@TDANetwork) October 10, 2019
The US Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) under the leadership of Chairman Jay Clayton will never approve a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), believes Jake Chervinsky of New York-based Kobre & Kim, LLP.The general counsel noted that Clayton and his team look at bitcoin as an asset that remains “susceptible to manipulation and surveillance-sharing agreements.” So no matter how the ETF backers decorate their applications, the SEC officials would continue to reject them under the guise of the Exchange Act.“Clayton’s term ends on June 5, 2021, but could go another 18 months longer,” added Chervinsky. “Usually, we’d see new ETF proposals filed immediately after rejection, but it might be time to take a year off.”Depends. If the SEC adopted Commissioner Peirce’s view on the Exchange Act, then manipulation in underlying markets would be irrelevant. The only issue would be manipulation of the ETF itself: https://t.co/PTVF8Act4l— Jake Chervinsky (@jchervinsky) October 10, 2019The statements came around right after the SEC rejected the Bitcoin ETF application filed by Bitwise Asset Management in partnership with NYSE Arca. The order reiterated that both NYSE Arca, in particular, failed to respond to their concerns related to price manipulation or other illegal activities. It read:“The Commission is disapproving this proposed rule change because, as discussed below, NYSE Arca has not met its burden under the Exchange Act and the Commission’s Rules of Practice to demonstrate that its proposal is consistent with the requirements of Exchange Act Section 6(b)(5), and, in particular, the requirement that the rules of a national securities exchange be ‘designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices.’”Non-EventSEC’s latest decision on Bitcoin ETF asserted its conservative approach towards emerging assets. The move left a large portion of cryptocurrency enthusiasts disappointed, with many calling on to appoint Hester Peirce as the next chairman. The republican SEC commissioner was only among the five to have supported a Bitcoin ETF.Meanwhile, the other section of the cryptocurrency community saw the news as a non-event – something that does not impact the performance of bitcoin as both technology and investable asset. Market analyst Alex Krüger exemplified it with bitcoin’s unfazed price performance after the ETF rejection.The Bitwise ETF proposal was in many ways similar to the new Bitfinex/Tether lawsuit. Both presented facts through a heavily stained glass. The SEC rejection should have been fully priced in. A non-event. https://t.co/OCNlQu7F2N— Alex Krüger (@krugermacro) October 9, 2019Nevertheless, an approved Bitcoin ETF could have opened a floodgate of investors towards bitcoin. A study conducted by Tom Alford at TotalCrypto.io predicted a 500 percent price rally in the bitcoin market upon an ETF approval after analyzing the gold market.“ETF kick-started the biggest bull run in gold’s history. Prices rose from just $331.60 per ounce to a high of $1,917.90. That’s an incredible 478% increase in price after the gold ETF was launched,” reasoned Alford.Bad Bitcoin ETF ApplicationRptr45 in a long thread showed how Bitwise shot itself in the foot after releasing its renowned “Real 10” report. Published earlier this year, the study noted that 95 percent of bitcoin spot market volume is fake and is open to price manipulation.“There’s a good chance any new application must prove what Bitwise stated with their 95% study is WRONG before they can even get them comfortable that the underlying spot market isn’t subject to manipulation and look to approve an ETF,” wrote Rptr45.8/ They even managed to piss off the SEC with their charts. “The charts & graphs prepared present a particular view of its analysis that vary based on choices made, including scaling…. For example, the Sponsor provides a line graph of the CME bitcoin futures— Rptr45 (@Rptr45) October 10, 2019