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Fake News: SWIFT Denies Rumor it Will Join Ripple’s Blockchain Network

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Speculation that RippleNet and the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) were planning to integrate may have caused the market cap of ripple (XRP) to briefly overtake that of ethereum to take the second position in the overall crypto market.

SWIFT Says it isn’t Joining RippleNet

This was based on the belief that with the integration, RippleNet — an enterprise blockchain which does not use XRP — would serve as a gateway to convincing SWIFT members to adopt XRP-integrated Ripple products like xRapid in the future.

Fueling the rumor was the fact that SWIFT had announced that beginning in November its new standard in cross-border money transfers, SWIFT global payments innovation (GPI), would be upgraded with the GPI tracker being extended to all payment messages for 11,000 banks on the network across 200 countries. With this upgrade, the rumor went, about 4,000 banks would now get access to Ripple products.

However, these rumors have been dismissed by SWIFT, according to Finance Magnates. Through its public relations firm, the bank-owned payments network that was founded more than four decades ago denied that the upgrade had anything to do with RippleNet:

“I’m not sure where those rumours are coming from but the upcoming standards release … is entirely unrelated to RippleNet.”

Possibly also contributing to the speculation are some developments which have taken place in the last couple of years. In April of last year, for instance, Ripple hired a former SWIFT executive who was responsible for selling its GPI offering, Marjan Delatinne, as its sales director for Europe.

Worlds Apart in Terms of Speed

Had the speculation been true, such a partnership could potentially have seen SWIFT greatly benefit from the RippleNet, especially with regards to transaction speeds. While RippleNet claims it can route “payments efficiently and leverage instant settlement to transact in seconds,” SWIFT says that even with the upgrade, only 50% of the SWIFT GPI payments are credited in under half an hour — and SWIFT thinks that this is worth bragging about.

Prior to the brief “flippening” earlier this week, the market capitalization of XRP had overtaken ethereum’s a couple of times this year, as CCN had previously reported.

Source: CCN

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Bitcoin

Was November the Last Big Bitcoin Sell-Off? Trader Expects Slow Grind in 2019

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By CCN.com: According to a trader and crypto technical analyst, November 2018 may have been the last sell-off of Bitcoin and a long consolidation period is expected throughout 2019.

Since experiencing a steep 13 percent drop on January 10 from $4,036 to $3,502, the Bitcoin price has been relatively stable in a tight range in mid-$3,000.

Chart from TradingView

What Does Low Volatility Mean For Bitcoin?

While it seems as if the price of Bitcoin has been volatile throughout the past two weeks, the volatility of the dominant cryptocurrency occurred in a tight range between $3,500 to $4,000.

No major movements below or above key support and resistance levels were recorded, preventing any meaningful short-term price movement.

One trader said that if the trend of relatively low volatility in a tight low price range continues, the sideways action of Bitcoin will extend throughout the year, resulting in a long consolidation period.

“The longer this sideways action takes place the more I think the bottom is in. November was one of the worst monthly candles in history. It’s very possible that was the last of the major selling and now we’ll have a consolidation period that lasts most of 2019,” the trader said.

bitcoin price
The trader is predicting bitcoin to trade sideways through much of 2019. Pic: Shutterstock.

On Sunday, Bitcoin recorded a six percent drop against the U.S. dollar in a 24-hour period from $3,700 to $3,470. The asset has since recovered above the $3,500 mark and based on the performance of the asset in the last 48 hours, Bitcoin is expected to demonstrate stability throughout the week.

Hsaka, a cryptocurrency analyst, said:

Inside Bar; Low that was taken out (3480) holding as support; Continue leaning neutral here, can’t short HTF support, will wait for a break (even moreso when confluent with that CME gap).

A slow grind upwards in the first two quarters of 2019 could allow Bitcoin to establish a proper bottom and a mid-term trend reversal. If the price of asset recovers quickly in a short time period, as seen in the major sell-off of cryptocurrencies in November 2018, it can leave the asset class vulnerable to a large short-term correction.

With events that are considered as catalysts to fuel the momentum of Bitcoin in the first two quarters of this year including Bakkt and Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) far from being materialized due to the shutdown of the U.S. government, it has become more likely for the cryptocurrency market to demonstrate a low level of volatility in the upcoming months.

How About Alternative Crypto Assets?

Historically, alternative crypto assets, especially low market cap cryptocurrencies, have tended to perform strongly against Bitcoin when the asset is in a sideways market.

However, as seen in the performance of tokens and other major crypto assets in the past 48 hours, the stability in Bitcoin is unlikely to trigger short-term rallies for assets with lower volumes and valuations due to the current conditions of the market.

Some analysts believe November to have been the last sell-off for Bitcoin and expect a several-month-long consolidation period to occur.

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Controversial Opinion Piece Says XRP Decentralization is Happening, Puts Proof of Work Coins with the Dinosaurs

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During the last few months, Proof-of-Work (PoW) cryptocurrencies have been experiencing some issues such as 51% attacks. This is the case of Ethereum Classic (ETC) a top 20 digital asset that has been affected by this kind of attack. However, other networks such as Ripple continue to expand decentralizing their network even more.

XRP has been attacked for being a centralized digital asset. However, the cryptocurrency was able to overcome these critics and become the second largest digital asset in the market. However, XRP has still a long way for taking Bitcoin’s position as the largest cryptocurrency.

This is something difficult because Bitcoin (BTC) was the first cryptocurrency to be released to the market. XRP was launched a few years after, thus, it has fewer chances of becoming the most popular digital asset. Bitcoin has been using the PoW algorithm to verify transactions and keep the network secure. However, this process could eventually become obsolete as rewards drop for miners.

Every 210,000 blocks miners will be receiving fewer Bitcoins for their work. Unless Bitcoin price grows, they will eventually leave the market. Miners are located all over the world, but a large majority is currently in China, which is something that could heavily affect Bitcoin’s network in the future.

In general, Bitcoin mining activities were very profitable when the asset was close to its all-time highs back in December 2017. Several companies decided to set up mining farms and start mining Bitcoin. This resulted in the centralization of the industry in just a few hands. ASIC miners used to process Bitcoin transactions are very expensive and can be acquired in bulk just by a few companies.

XRP uses Distributed Agreement Protocol, also known as Consensus Protocol. In this way, XRP avoids the problem of double spending in a much more efficient way than Bitcoin does. The distributed agreement protocol works with validators that control that the network is operating in a healthy way.

80% of XRP validators must support and vote for a change during a period of two weeks before it goes into effect. This is a better way to improve the network compared to Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies in the market. If the change is not agreed by these validators, then it will not go into effect.

If validators want to disrupt the normal flow of transactions in the XRP ledger, users would have to agree on a new list that would allow the network to be operative.

David Schwartz, the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Ripple, commented about this issue:

“This has never been a problem for any blockchain in the past, and it’s required by every blockchain when previous agreements fail to be sufficient. Decentralized systems fundamentally allow interoperation only among people who continue to agree on a large number of things.”

He went on saying that the XRP has the lack of incentives for this situation to happen. Honest participants want the network to properly work and have all the interest aligned.

In this way, XRP looks better suited than other PoW networks to resist attacks by collusion or other bad actors. Furthermore, XRPis able to process more than 1500 per second while Bitcoin or Ethereum (ETH) could just support 16 transactions per second (TPS). Finally, the fees paid for transaction BTC and ETH are much larger than XRP.

Ripple is also growing in the market. It has reached more than 200 companies working on top of the RippleNet. Additionally, there are new products such as xRapid that are going to be embraced by financial institutions and banking firms to make cross-border payments in a much easier and cheaper way.

At the time of writing, XRP has a market capitalization of $31.56 billion, this is half of the market cap that Bitcoin has ($62.19 billion). According to Yahoo Finance, XRP has a price per coin of $0.31 while Bitcoin is being traded around $3,550.

Source: Bitcoin Exchange Guide

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Dow Futures Prep for Opening Bell Plunge as Bitcoin Price Turns Volatile

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By CCN.com: The US stock market returns to action this morning following Monday’s holiday break, and the Dow is gearing up for a triple-digit loss at the opening bell. The bitcoin price, meanwhile, experienced a jolt of volatility ahead of the US trading session to break out of what had previously been a relatively calm day for the cryptocurrency market.

Dow Futures See Triple-Digit Pullback

As of 8:29 am ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures had declined by 144 points or 0.58 percent, implying an opening-bell loss of 135.35 points. The broad S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq also steeled themselves for losses at the open, with futures for the two indices down 0.60 percent and 0.68 percent, respectively.

dow jones futures nasdaq S&P 500
Dow Jones Industrial Average (blue), S&P 500 (red), and Nasdaq (orange) futures declined on Monday and Tuesday ahead of the week’s opening bell.

With the US stock market closed on Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, futures trading had nevertheless portended Tuesday declines. As CCN reported, China published its official GDP growth statistics for 2018, which showed that the world’s second-largest economy had expanded at its slowest pace in 28 years.

That data emboldened US President Donald Trump, who implored China to “stop playing around” and “finally do a Real Deal” that would end the ongoing US-China trade war.

“China posts slowest economic numbers since 1990 due to U.S. trade tensions and new policies,” the president tweeted on Tuesday. “Makes so much sense for China to finally do a Real Deal, and stop playing around!”

Hu Xijin, the editor of the China-based Global Times, responded to that tweet with a warning that Beijing won’t sign an “unequal deal,” even if the country experienced negative economic growth.

“China has hoped to reach a reasonable trade deal with the US. When China’s GDP grew at double digit rate, we wished China-US relations go well. But if the US forces China to sign an unequal deal, Beijing won ‘t yield even it is a negative growth, let alone 6.6%.”

Meanwhile, the March 1 end to the US-China tariff truce continues to inch closer, placing more pressure on the two economic superpowers to find common ground.

Bitcoin Price Turns Volatile on Tuesday

Though not on a holiday itself, the cryptocurrency market had been relatively calm on Monday following Sunday’s moderate pullback. This morning, though, bitcoin and its would-be peers have begun to regain a bit of their characteristic volatility.

bitcoin price
A relatively calm bitcoin price broke out of its slumber on Tuesday, at least for five minutes.

After range-trading between $3,550 and $3,500 for most of the day, the bitcoin price took a sudden drop shortly before 11:40 UTC, slipping as low as $3,401 before recovering above $3,520 in a whipsaw movement that took less than five minutes. As of the time of writing, the bitcoin price sat at $3,557 on Bitstamp, about $33 below its intraday high of $3,590.

Day-over-day movements were relatively muted throughout the wider cryptocurrency market. The ripple price (XRP) declined by 1.22 percent to a global average of $0.317, while ethereum, bitcoin cash, EOS, litecoin, and bitcoin sv all moved by less than 1 percent. Stellar, whose price often moves in tandem with ripple, declined 1.33 percent to $0.102, and tron outperformed the index with a 4.51 percent jump to $0.026 that was likely connected to the announcement that TRX holders would earn an airdrop when the new BitTorrent cryptocurrency arrives.

Altogether, the cryptocurrency market cap — which measures the aggregate valuations of all cryptocurrencies — stands at $119.7 billion, representing a 24-hour increase of around $100 million.

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