OPNION: It has been five hundred and seventy-seven days since Donald Trump took office and the sheer avalanche of news has been more than the past two hundred and twenty-nine years of American presidency combined. The latest and ‘White-House shaking’ news of the conviction of both Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen is the rotten cherry on a very unbalanced cake. Tax fraud, embezzlement and paying off pornstars aside, there is another major player intrinsic to the happening of this controversy: Bitcoin.
Is this Watergate 2.0?
The American people have been clamoring for a change in the administrative system ever since that groundbreaking day way back on 8th November 2017. The recent shake-up does nothing to instill faith towards the government in the American people with the supposed ‘swamp’ that was supposed to be drained only getting more grotesque and slimy.
The controversy that some people are calling ‘Stupid Watergate’ reached a crescendo when Michael Cohen pleaded guilty in court and Paul Manafort was convicted for his fraudulent activities. Michael Cohen, Trump’s ex-lawyer revealed his wrongdoings on multiple counts of financial charges which state that he was in charge of wiring money to Stormy Daniels, a pornstar with whom Trump supposedly had an affair with.
Donald Trump’s ex-Campaign manager, Paul Manafort was found guilty of five counts of tax fraud, one count of hidden documents from the government and a double count of bank fraud. This trident of convictions threw open a bizarrely large window of allegations that connected Manafort to allegations in the past. Was he a pawn in the Russian hack where a group of 13 Russian hackers was convicted of using Bitcoin to sway the Presidential elections? Was Robert Mueller right all along?
Trump’s win and Bitcoin
Bitcoin was thrown into the limelight for the first time in a political spectrum when a list of indictments by Special Counsel Robert Mueller stated that Bitcoin was used to sway the 2016 US elections in favor of Donald Trump.
The report showed that almost $95,000 was laundered using Bitcoin, funds that were directed to conduct hacks on the Democrats’ online servers. The indictments released by prosecutors under the US Attorney General also shows that 12 members of the GRU, the intelligence wing of the Russian government used servers and Virtual Private Networks in Malaysia and the US to pull the wool over investigators.
How does this tie-up with Paul Manafort’s conviction?
He was one of the several people accused of being involved in the server hacks of the Democrats, not as a hacker of course but as one of the supervisors. Manafort had outrightly denied all links with any sort of Bitcoin attack which was followed by attacks on Mueller instead.
Robert Mueller will be the one having the last laugh right now as the conviction of Manafort in an Alexandria, Virginia, courthouse, gives a boost for his investigation against the President. The eight criminal charges on which Manafort is found guilty fall under the ambit of the 2016 elections and the idea that Bitcoin was directly used by an American national to change the tangent of a democratic election is nothing short of a utopian nightmare.
Bitcoin prides itself on being completely decentralized, an alien concept to almost all the banks present in society and probably one of the major reasons why it was used by Manafort and the GRU to puppeteer the elections. Decentralisation as a concept means that the transactions are secure and peer to peer, meaning there is no third party present that would raise a red flag alert on any nefarious transaction.
At a time when companies such as Silk Road, a drug-peddling service purely run on cryptocurrency was brought down by security forces, it is highly ironic that the very government that initiated such a ruling would partake in such shady activities. The majority of cases levied against both Manafort and Cohen are finance related and Bitcoin at its core is probably an “image” issue that could impact the booming cryptocurrency industry as a repercussion.
Rober Mueller’s probe into the POTUS has been taken to the next level and according to the man himself, he ‘will not stop until justice is served’. The ground under the feet of the 45th president of the United States is shrinking fast, and like Bitcoin, the people around the world are not going to stop talking about it.
Bitcoin (BTCUSD) weekly forecast on February 18 — 24, 2019
Cryptocurrency Bitcoin (BTC/USD) is trading at 3587. Cryptocurrency quotes are trading below the moving average with a period of 55. This indicates a bearish trend for Bitcoin. At the moment, cryptocurrency quotes are moving near the upper border of the Bollinger Bands indicator.
Bitcoin (BTCUSD) weekly forecast on February 18 — 24, 2019
As part of the Bitcoin exchange rate forecast, the test level of 3820 is expected. Where should we expect an attempt to continue the fall of BTC/USD and the further development of the downward trend. The purpose of this movement is the area near the level of 2700. The conservative area for selling Bitcoin is located near the upper border of the Bollinger Bands indicator at the level of 3850.
Cancellation of the option to continue the decline in Bitcoin will be the breakdown of the area of the upper border of the Bollinger Bands indicator. As well as the moving average with a period of 55 and closing of quotations of the pair above the area of 4250. This will indicate a change in the current trend in favor of the bullish for BTC/USD. In the event of a breakdown of the lower border of the Bollinger Bands indicator bands, we should expect an acceleration of the fall of the cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin (BTCUSD) weekly forecast on February 18 — 24, 2019 implies a test level of 3820. Further, it is expected to continue falling to the area below the level of 2700. The conservative area for selling Bitcoin is located area of 3850. Canceling the option of falling cryptocurrency will break the level of 4250. In this case, we should expect continued growth.
BTCUSD Analysis: Bitcoin still trading in a bearish consolidation [Video]
Any upside moves are classified as corrective ahead of what could be the next downside extension and bearish continuation. It would take a break back above 4,380 at a minimum to take the immediate pressure off the downside. Next critical support comes in the form of the July and September 2017 lows, around 2,000 and 2,975 respectively.
In this analysis, we take a look at Bitcoin each day, highlighting all of the need to knows for anyone looking to extract up to date information about major levels and relevant trends, both short term and longer-term. The analysis is designed for the trader, investor and even those simply holding the crypto asset, looking for an idea of where they may want to consider making that next conversion.
The cryptocurrency update is new each day and is presented with an added layer of animation, in an effort to make the analysis as engaging as possible, while also communicating the message with respect to key trends and levels in an easy to understand, seamless manner with great value add to all.
Are Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) Net Positive Or Negative For Bitcoin And Crypto Assets?
Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) have been analyzed by several banking institutions around the world, specifically by several central banks in different countries. However, they are different than virtual currencies such as Bitcoin (BTC). How would the issuance of CBDCs affect Bitcoin and the whole crypto market?
There are some important differences between Bitcoin and CBDCs. For example, Bitcoin is permissionless, decentralized and censorship-resistant while CBDCs are permission, centralized and censorable. Thus, they are almost contrary to Bitcoin. While the most popular cryptocurrency provides freedom to users, CBDCs allow governments to have larger control over their populations.
A few days ago, the popular investment bank JP Morgan unveiled a stablecoin called JPM Coin that would be used to make transfers between customers in just a few seconds. Although JP Morgan’s CEO Jamie Dimon has been against virtual currencies, it seems that the bank will be using blockchain technology to power their virtual currency.
There were several individuals in the market claiming that the new JP Morgan digital coin killed Bitcoin, or at least, it is going to kill the most popular cryptocurrency in the market. However, it is important to understand that these coins will never be similar and work in a completely different way. CBDCs and stablecoins issued by financial institutions such as JP Morgan work in a centralized and controlled way.
Indeed, these new digital assets do not seem to present a threat to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. SWIFT could be affected by these new coins. SWIFT is the mainstream and most popular system to perform cross-border payments. This system has proven to be slow and costly for many financial institutions and banks all over the world. Indeed, Ripple’s services could also be affected by the growth of new CBDCs.
CBDCs legitimize that virtual currencies are the future of money. Because of this, it might be possible for Bitcoin to distance itself from drugs and criminals. At the same time, with CBDCs individuals will discover that there are several advantages of using digital assets.
Individuals will clearly have their funds frozen at any moment using CBDCs if the financial institution regulating the asset decides so. Moreover, their accounts can be suspended and users would not be able to use these funds anymore.
There are some crypto experts that believe that CBDCs could be very harmful to societies. For example, China is currently trying to control its population with new surveillance systems related to how individuals use their funds.
Crypto fiat (i.e. government controlled permissioned cryptocurrencies) will be the biggest battleground globally for human rights over the next decade. China is leading the way, many other countries, including some big western democracies, will follow. https://t.co/8BqfmBJ2mP
— Ari Paul (@AriDavidPaul) February 13, 2019
With CBDCs, people will realize that there is no more freedom and that the government is ultimately controlling everything. This is why Bitcoin could grow as a safe haven where users can feel free to use their funds as they want without being controlled by governments.
That does not mean that Bitcoin will be used to perform illegal things. It means that users will protect their privacy and what they do with their funds.