- Constantinople’s arrival is delayed due to security breaches.
- Possible increases in the short term seem to value the news positively.
- Very powerful upward structures are suggested.
As if we were on a permanent “Groundhog Day,” we are dawning today at the same levels that we have intermittently frequented since mid-December. Monday’s “Bump” failed to secure the advances and went back yesterday to the first available support.
That’s what it looks like, but looking closely at the indicators we can see that today can be a special day. Today is a day in which the market has before it an optimal scenario for a new bullish start, although equally optimal to cancel the advances and withdraw in search of a new accumulation zone deep enough in the price scale so that the offer is exhausted.
The Ethereum development community has announced early in the morning that Constantinople, the expected update of the Ethereum network in detecting vulnerabilities has been delayed. As we read in the blog of Ethereum.org:
Out of an abundance of caution, key stakeholders around the Ethereum community have determined that the best course of action will be to delay the planned Constantinople fork that would have occurred at block 7,080,000 on January 16, 2019.
This will require anyone running a node (node operators, exchanges, miners, wallet services, etc…) to update to a new version of Geth or Parity before block 7,080,000. Block 7,080,000 will occur in approximately 32 hours from the time of this publishing or at approximately January 16, 8:00 pm PT / January 16, 11:00 pm ET / January 17, 4:00 am GMT.
ETH/BTC Daily Chart
The ETH/BTC, a leading indicator of market mood, continues its bullish trend, although playing with the lower limits. It is a fragile situation, but for now, the current trend resists. The level to watch is at 0.0325 BTC per ETH. Below this level, the Ethereum would lose its control situation against Bitcoin, and we would see a significant capital shift flying into Bitcoin.
BTC/USD 240 Minute Chart
The BTC/USD on the 4-hour chart confirms what I predicted yesterday as a possible scenario and returns to the $3,600 level. The highlight of the analysis is to see the SMA200 with a bullish profile. This setup is not trivial, as the slowest of the simple averages is also the most inertial and influential.
Above the current price, the first target is $3,700 (price congestion resistance and EMA50), a level that seems to be on track as I write this article. The destination point is not natural since at $3,734 is the second resistance level (SMA200) and at $3,777 expects a third resistance with the SMA100.
Below the current price, the first support is at $3,600 (price congestion support). The second support level is at $3,470 (price congestion support). Finally, the third level of support is at $3,320 (price congestion support). There is very little mystery about the lower end of the stage.
The MACD in the 4-hour range shows how the fast line tries to bounce upward after touching the slow average. It is a compelling structure in the short term although it is usually the beginning of divergent movements.
The DMI in the range of 4 hours shows the bears losing strength while the bulls take a strong bullish inclination. The structure ensures gains in the short term.
ETH/USD 240 Minute Chart
The ETH/USD in the range of 4 hours shows an identical structure to the one we just analyzed in the BTC/USD pair. For Ethereum the first resistance level is $127.9 (SMA200). The simple average of 200 periods shows an outstanding bullish inclination. The second resistance level is at $130 (price congestion resistance and EMA50). Finally, the third resistance level is at $142 (price congestion resistance and SMA100).
Below the current price, the first support for ETH/USD is at $120 (price congestion support). The second level of support is at $115 (price congestion support). The third level of support is at $110 (price congestion support).
The MACD on a 4-hour chart shows a small delay concerning the BTC/USD MACD. If the day ends with price increases, the upside potential will be huge.
The DMI on the 4-hour chart shows the bears retreating with the same force with which the bulls advance. The structure keeps a strong bullish potential.
XRP/USD 240 Minute Chart
The XRP/USD is trading at the $0.331 price level after a first failed attempt to break the first resistance level at $0.334 (price congestion resistance). The second resistance level is at $0.34 (EMA50). The third resistance level is at $0.354 (SMA200 and SMA100). I also see in the case of the XRP how the slower average shows an optimistic bullish profile. The XRP/USD pair is the one with the most freedom to have no moving average above.
Below the current price, the first support level is $0.32 (price congestion support). The second support level is $0.308 (price congestion support). The third support level is $0.296 (price congestion support).
The MACD on the 4-hour chart shows a bullish profile after the fast average tested the slow average level. It is a powerful bullish structure which, over time, tends to end up in divergent structures.
The 4-hour DMI chart shows the most advanced structure among the Top 3 of the crypto-board. Bears and bulls move at the same level of trend force and as resolved will give us clues as to what may happen in the cases of Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Will Bitcoin (BTC) And Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Payments War Destabilize Market?
With bitcoin (BTC) back above $8,000 and set to accelerate higher, the last thing crypto needs is a fallout between the bitcoin developer and business community and the diehard Bitcoin Cash (BCH) believers.
Bitcoin fork BCH, whose supporters insist that it is truer to bitcoin’s original mission of digital cash, fears bitcoin people want to shut it out of merchant payments. All this as BCH continues to track bitcoin as does the rest of the market, maintaining the outperformance margin opened up at the beginning of April.
That performance difference, however, is unlikely to be because the market assesses BCH to be a better product than bitcoin.
Bitcoin is still king by a very wide margin
Far from it, judging by the network fundamentals of BCH vis a vis bitcoin.
Although Roger Ver, a vociferous supporter of BCH, is able to point to its low fees on the network compared to BTC, that’s not for a good reason.
Perhaps most dangerously for BCH, it is not very decentralised, with the secretive BTC top mining pool based in China recently accounting for more than 50% of the hashrate, although that has decreased now. At the end of April their was the case of an entity using the name “Satoshi Nakamoto” that had 40% of the hashrate.
BCH has made itself a six-monthly target for attackers
Then there’s the six-monthly schedule of upgrades which seem to have turned into an opportunity for attackers to make mischief. That’s what happened on 15 May, when a bug was exploited that led to empty blocks, 10 in all.
It didn’t end there.
On the same day it has been speculated that there was an aborted attempt by short sellers to crash the price, with 179,202 BCH or BAB (the ticker on Bitfinex for Bitcoin ABC aka Bitcoin Cash) borrowed on Bitfinex to take a leveraged short position. The build up in BCH borrowing was spotted by redditor frozen124.
It didn’t work out for the shorters as the price rose, but the timing was suspicious according to folks at coinspice.io who have been doing some digging around. The borrowing by the shorters took place 12 hours before the empty blocks attack.
Additionally, 110,000 that had been borrowed ended up not being used to take a position in the market, leading observers to surmise that whoever was behind the borrowing, was linked to the block attack and for some reason had decided against executing.
It was a costly miscalculation on their part because all that borrowing of BCH drove the interest rate demanded by the lenders to 30%, so the unallocated borrowing cost 79 BCH or $31,500 at the price at the time.
Someone’s got it in for BCH.
Roger Ver sure thinks so, or at least the Bitcoin.com twitter account does:
Someone opened millions of dollars worth of shorts against BCH just before the scheduled network upgrade. This was followed by a failed attack on the network. Could these two things be related? 🧐https://t.co/orbc9Slq5R
— Bitcoin (@Bitcoin) May 15, 2019
For those new to crypto, bitcoin.com is controlled by Roger Ver and stands accused by bitcoin people of deliberately confusing the difference between the one and only original and the BCH fork.
But let’s not take sides.
Payments Protocol – BCH and BitPay versus Bitcoin core?
Nevertheless, the network attack and the apparent co-ordinated but half-cocked shorting effort may partly explain the timing of an incendiary broadside against the Bitcoin “maximalist” community in an op-ed published on bitcoin.com by Tomislav Dugandzic,described as an “independent bitcoin cash (BCH) user and currency speculator“.
Titled “Core vs Gavin – Bitcoin Payments Are Being Bulldozed for Political Reasons, Dugandzic is convinced that Bitcoin core are out to sabotage the way payments are processed for nefarious political reasons – a serious charge indeed.
At the centre of the brewing dispute is the Payments Protocol, which was some tidying done by Gavin Andresen and Mike Hearn in 2013 in the form of bitcoin improvement proposal 70 (BIP70).
The changes allowed a payer to be messaged by the receiver (merchant) and introduced code to specifically guard against “man in the middle” attacks where a bad actor gets between payer and receiver and inserts the fraudster’s address.
For merchants, the payment protocol removed the inefficiencies with, to take one example, paying refunds.
In a nutshell then, BIP70 makes handling payments more efficient for merchants and provides a better user experience for payers.
It turns out that not all wallets are supporting BIP70 but most major popular ones do including those for Bitcoin Cash.
BitPay, the largest bitcoin payment processor and a handler of both bitcoin and BCH payments, imlements payments protocol and it says it has reduced errors in payments by 98.6%.
So that’s all good. What’s the problem?
BitPay is what Dugandzic describes as a BCH-friendly payments processor and it is this that he claims lies behind a “political” move by bitcoin core ( which controls the official bitcoin website, bitcoin.org) to stymie the prospects for BCH adoption.
Bitcoin developers have deprecated BIP70, which is coders speak that it is being to be phased out.
Something of a war has broken out between those who want to keep BIP70 and others who want to revert to the earlier BIP21 for handling URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers) and encoding of payment request information.
Samurai wallet is focused on by Dugandzic as an example of the anti BIP70 crowd as it came up in a video featuring Andreas Antonopoulos, who could be described as bitcoin royalty as the author of the seminal The Internet of Money.
Antonopoulos is what Dugandzic sees as a typical (as in political) “Bitcoin Core advocate”.
Here’s a quote from the op-ed, which provides a flavour of how these disputes quickly turn nasty:
The Samurai wallet team tweeted that they approve of Bitcoin Core advocates “viciously attacking” Bitcoin Cash advocates and that Bitcoin Cash advocates are “lunatics” and “frauds.” That’s a pretty strong choice of words to describe a group of people that have a difference of opinion regarding how Bitcoin should scale.
Bitcoin will not bend the knee for you, your business, or anyone else. Bitcoin will not compromise. That's a feature not a bug.
You lunatics forked yourself off, now you can deal with the consequences and the "vicious attacks". https://t.co/5DGoppwcIZ
— Samourai Wallet (@SamouraiWallet) February 8, 2018
Thin line between welcome competition and senseless tribalism
For mere mortals these disputes can all seem arcane but unfortunately they are important tests of the maturity of the space regarding cooperation on standards and resolving disagreements over competing technology solutions in the absence of an industry policeman.
The way these issues are fought out does nothing to help crypto adoption, be it bitcoin, one of its forks or one of the myriad other competing crypto projects.
Those critical of BIP70 seem to be suggesting that it cedes too much power to the likes of BitPay, which some presumably think is too closely aligned with the BCH camp.
Confusion in the marketplace and at the level of users actually trying to buy stuff with bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash, is no good for anyyone.
The BCH price may well continue to outperform bitcoin and even catch up on the former’s market cap, as it briefly seemed to be closing in on flippening BTC in November 2017.
But as BCH continues to motor, up 17% today at $425 it will be doing so probably more because of brand association with bitcoin rather than because of its technological superiority or, for that matter, the vitriol its supporters (and to be fair its detractors too) trade in.
Bitcoin has some weak points, like scaling. But governance and general inter-coin relations and its breakdown – which is how Bitcoin Cash came into being in the first place and then Bitcoin SV – is a headache for the crypto ecosystem, not just bitcoin or BCH, and it shows no signs of going away.
Top Altcoins Gainers in USD and BTC Value – 2019 Week 20 Edition
As the week almost draws to a close, it is a perfect time to tally up the gains and losses sustained by some of the top markets. An interesting comparison can be made in terms of BTC and USD gains, as the result is very different. One can only hope this positive momentum carries over to next week, although nothing has been set in stone as of yet.
All Altcoins Gain in USD Value
Despite most markets deriving value from Bitcoin’s uptrend, almost all of them have surpassed the world’s leading cryptocurrency in terms of USD-based gains. Both Binance Coin and Stellar gained over 40%, which is incredibly impressive. However, the biggest gainer is NEM, which shot up by over 65% in just seven days. Absolutely monstrous gains for an altcoin which has seen its fair share of ups and downs lately.
As far as the other established altcoins are concerned, IOTA, Tezos, Ethereum Classic, Ethereum, and XRP all gained 30% or more. A more than substantial increase for these alternative markets, which was not necessarily expected. All of these altcoins have lost tremendous value throughout 2018, but it seems some of that lost value has been recovered rather nicely. Creating high support levels will be the first order of business for all of these markets.
Noteworthy gains are also noted by Cardano, Tron, Dash, and NEO. Every single one of these markets gained at least 20%, which is still more than Bitcoin managed to achieve. Some will claim this is a clear sign the altcoin season has begun, although the opinions will remain divided on that front first and foremost. Most of these markets still struggle to note real trading volume, unfortunately.
Monero, EOS, and Bitcoin Cash also managed to gain more value percentage-wise than Bitcoin, albeit in a slightly less convincing manner. .However, Litecoin and Bitcoin SV are the only ones which did not see a massive price jump as of yet. A bit unusual, as Litecoin is underway to hit $100 and Bitcoin SV is very close to surpassing $85 again. It appears there is more upward momentum ahead for most of the different markets.
The BTC-based Gainers Look Somewhat Different
It is always interesting to see how alternative markets perform in BTC value. Of the top 20 coins, Bitcoin SV and Litecoin were the only ones to lose value, except for Tether – but that is rather normal. This would also explain why both Litecoin and Bitcoin SV have noted fewer gains this week, as it seems their ongoing BTC-based decline has eroded some of the USD improvements in the process.
Bitcoin Cash, EOS, NEO, Monero, Tron, and Cardano all noted solid BTC-based gains, but well under the 10% threshold. Of these coins, EOS performed the weakest, which is rather unusual under such bullish circumstances. There may be some movement in those markets next week, albeit that will primarily depend on what happens to Bitcoin.
Ethereum Classic, Dash, and XRP all gained 10% or more in BTC value, which seems to be in line with how their USD value has evolved throughout the week. A solid performance all around, although some traders and speculators would have hoped for much bigger improvements. Those may still materialize, for all one knows.
The biggest performers of the week are NEM, Stellar, Binance Coin, Tezos, IOTA, and Ethereum in that specific order. With BTC-based gains ranging from 20.34% to as high as 45.58%, it is evident traders and holders had plenty of opportunities to make good money over time. Now that Bitcoin is seemingly ready to resume its uptrend, these altcoin/Bitcoin ratios may undergo some very peculiar changes, either for better or worse.
Brad Garlinghouse: xCurrent is an Upgrade of SWIFT 2.0
Brad Garlinghouse, the CEO of Ripple, believes that xCurrent is an upgrade of SWIFT. He made this statement while addressing representatives of banks and financial institutions where he was the only member from the private sector.
SWIFT is the dominant cross-border messaging system used by banks and other financial institutions. However, Garlinghouse pointed out that the global payment network and the sector in general is yet to catch up with the age of the internet saying Ripple’s xCurrent technology is an upgrade to SWIFT.
Garlinghouse notes that “xCurrent is kind of SWIFT 2.0. It’s a messaging framework that is much more efficient and more real-time in a fiat to fiat basis.” While the theme of the event centered on the creation of CBDC’s and how they would impact the global economy and the use of the USD as the dominant currency in the world.
1) @bgarlinghouse was the only participant from the private sector. The rest of participants were high executives of different Central Banks and Monetary Authorities.
— XRP Research Center (@XrpCenter) May 18, 2019
Garlinghouse maintains that even with CBDCs, interoperability will be an essential feature to have, and that is where xCurrent would come in adding that:
“Our view is very much; there needs to be interoperability globally. Even in a world of CBDCs, you still need interoperability to solve that problem [cross-border payments]”
With xCurrent, Ripple Inc is actively working towards creating an internet of value, fast-tracking it by funding start-ups willing to create XRP use case via Xpring. The Ripple CEO says that the technology is not targeting central banks, rather commercial banks, and other financial institutions.
He goes on to compare XRP and Bitcoin saying the former was designed to correct the deficiencies of the Bitcoin source code. He said Bitcoin TPS is low and with network fees, transactions are expensive but still lower that SWIFT’s. Meanwhile, XRP based transaction settles in less than four seconds thanks to a high TPS exceeding 1,500 allowing for near instantaneous settlement.
Ripple Solutions Transformational
The technologies developed by Ripple Inc as xCurrent, xRapid and xVia available in the RippleNet suite are no doubt a game changer because of the efficiency behind it. Garlinghouse cited the response their products have received so far from financial institutions and banks all over the world.
“xRapid is where we use XRP to fund real-time liquidity. We brought this product to market in Q4, 2018, and immediately we saw that the demand from banks and FIs who want to open up a new corridor for payments but don’t want to open up new Nostro and Vostro relationships.”
If anything, Ripple Inc is one of the leading blockchain start-ups in the world. Their close affiliation with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) through Chris Larsen is positive for Ripple Inc and XRP. At the event, Garlinghouse was the only person present from the private sector.
It is clear that Ripple and XRP getting the support of banks and financial institutions could make the coin the most liquid in the world. XRP NEO, a XRP enthusiast commented on this view saying:
What do you think would happen if the fastest and cheapest coin with the most professional team behind it, that is the only coin backed by hundreds of banks and FIs became the most liquid?
— XRP NEO (Not Giving Away Crypto) (@XRP_Anderson) May 18, 2019