SBI Holdings, a major financial and banking giant in Japan, has formally announced the launch of SBI Mining Chip Co., Ltd., officially entering the bitcoin mining industry.
In recent months, the most dominant forces in the global bitcoin mining industry in the likes of Bitmain, Cannan, and Japanese internet conglomerate GMO have struggled to adjust to market conditions.
As the bitcoin bear market extended to a 15-month correction, despite the gradual increase in hash power, the demand for bitcoin mining due to the general decline in profitability of mining noticeably dropped.
The entrance of SBI Holdings into the mining market at this phase of the correction suggests that the company has confidence in the long-term growth of bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market.
TIMING OF SBI’S BITCOIN MINING BUSINESS IS ESSENTIAL
In the months to come, with semiconductors expert Adam Traidman as the head of its mining venture, SBI Holdings is set to establish a strategic partnership with a major U.S.-based semiconductor enterprise to develop and manufacture bitcoin mining chips.
The official announcement of SBI read:
The SBI Group strongly promote on a wide range of businesses based on the digital asset, including cryptocurrency exchange business and other blockchain related businesses. The Group has practiced its cryptocurrency mining business at overseas and has now decided to expand its business scope to the manufacturing of mining chip itself and development of mining systems, through SBIMC.
Since April 2017, within a two-year span, the hashrate of the Bitcoin network has increased from 4 exahash to 48.5 exahash, by more than 12 fold.
The exponential increase in the hashrate of the Bitcoin network indicates the rise in computing power that is used to protect the Bitcoin blockchain protocol, allowing the network to become more resilient against attacks.
While the hashrate of the Bitcoin network dipped quite substantially in late 2018 due to the Bitcoin Cash and the Bitcoin SV hashrate war during which both camps concentrated computing power into the two networks to gain control over their respective blockchain networks, in a larger time frame, the hashrate of Bitcoin has risen by a big margin.
On a yearly basis, the hashrate of the Bitcoin network remains higher than where it was a year ago. In fact, since April 2018, the hashrate of the Bitcoin network as nearly doubled from 25 exahash to 48.5 exahash.
Despite the overall increase in the computing power supporting Bitcoin, it is risky to commit to the cryptocurrency mining sector during a period in which dominant players in the sector have started to struggle.
But, it can also be said that SBI Holdings may see an opportunity to evolve into a major company in the global cryptocurrency mining industry as competitors have started to demonstrate signs of fallout and decline.
GMO PULLED OUT
Japanese multi-billion dollar internet conglomerate GMO reportedly lost 1.3 billion yen in 2018 amidst one of the worst bear markets in the history of the cryptocurrency sector and announced that it would stop manufacturing mining chips.
The GMO team wrote:
The profitability of the in-house mining business of GMO Internet Group decreased as the cryptocurrency price declined and our mining share did not increase as expected due to the rise of the global hash rate, which went beyond our initial assumption.
After taking into consideration changes in the current business environment, the Company expects that it is difficult to recover the carrying amounts of the in-house-mining-related business assets, and therefore, it has been decided to record an extraordinary loss.
SBI is likely well aware of the unsuccessful attempt of GMO to win over the cryptocurrency mining industry and for the corporation to enter the highly competitive market at this juncture shows the firm’s belief in the long-term performance of the industry.
Bakkt Futures to Launch in the Current Quarter
Managing director and quant strategist at Fundstrat Global Advisors Sam Doctor suggested in a Twitter post published on July 19 that Bakkt’s Bitcoin (BTC) futures contracts will launch this quarter.
According to the post, which includes a summary of Fundstrat’s takeaways from the Bakkt Digital Asset Summit held on July 18, the firm’s futures will launch in the current quarter. The launch is set to follow tests announced last month, which are scheduled to start next week. The firm believes that the launch will be a catalyst to accelerate entry of traditional institutional investors. The post notes:
“THERE APPEARS TO BE A CRITICAL MASS OF ADOPTERS READY TO COME ON BOARD ON DAY 1 OF THE BAKKT LAUNCH, WITH THE SALES TEAM GAINING TRACTION AMONG BROKERS, MARKET MAKERS, PROP TRADING DESKS AND LIQUIDITY PROVIDERS.”
During the aforementioned event, Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) commissioner Dawn Stump apparently expressed that no current cryptocurrency could threaten financial stability and that the regulator sees a growing demand for Bitcoin futures from the public. Also during the summit, chief information officer at crypto investment firm Blocktower Ari Paul was reportedly confident that once a killer app or user interface makes cryptocurrency on-ramps safe, reliable and as easy to use as Paypal, retail adoption will be enormous.
According to the Fundstrat notes, Paul also said that institutions should not dismiss crypto assets, considering their low correlation with traditional assets and with compound annual growth rates of 200%-300%. He also said that inflation and confiscation resistance of cryptocurrencies are a key value proposition.
Pantera Capital CEO Dan Morehead, on the other hand, said that most tokens will fail and a handful of base protocols will survive, but with thousands of decentralized applications built on top of them.
As Cointelegraph reported in May, the Intercontinental Exchange is reportedly taking steps to ensure approval from the United States CFTC for Bakkt.
Bitcoin Price Slips 10% in 24 Hrs as Fed Raises Facebook Libra Concerns
Bitcoin Price Slips 10% in 24 Hrs as Fed Raises Facebook Libra Concerns
Bitcoin price (BTC) shed more than 10% on July 11 as markets appeared to react to criticism of Facebook’s Libra from a senior United States lawmaker.
Market visualization courtesy of Coin360
Data from Coin360 sees the majority of cryptocurrencies firmly in the red Thursday, hours after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Facebook’s offering should not continue development.
Libra, which aims to act firstly as a cross-border payment method, allegedly buoyed Bitcoin throughout recent weeks, with commentators arguing its public profile was driving publicity and uptake of Bitcoin itself.
Powell’s demands, which follow similar words from representatives of the Senate House of Financial Services Committee, leant weight to that theory.
“Libra raises serious concerns regarding privacy, money laundering, consumer protection, financial stability,” he said during a speech before a congressional committee. “These are concerns that should be thoroughly and publicly addressed.”
“THESE ARE CONCERNS THAT SHOULD BE THOROUGHLY AND PUBLICLY ADDRESSED.”
At press time, BTC/USD traded down 10.4% at $11,530, having risen as high as $13,160 in recent days.
Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360
The drop places the pair still within its recent corridor between around $9,700 and $13,800, with volatility still in evidence across crypto markets.
Altcoins, meanwhile, delivered noticeably worse performance as Bitcoin price fell, with several assets in the top twenty by market cap shedding 15% or more.
Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin, lost a similar amount to Bitcoin, hitting $272 and firmly losing support at $300 once again.
Ether 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360
Among the worst performers were Bitcoin SV (BSV), which lost 17.2%, and EOS (EOS), which was down 20.2%.KEEP TRACK OF TOP CRYPTO MARKETS IN REAL TIME HERE
Bitcoin Approaches $11,000 With All Top 20 in Green
Saturday, July 20 — crypto markets have seen another upward move, with all top 20 coins by market cap seeing major gains, while Bitcoin (BTC) has approached $11,000 mark again.
After dipping below the $11,000 threshold on July 14, Bitcoin has approached the price point today, with its intraday high of $10,944, according to data from CoinMarketCap. The biggest cryptocurrency added 3.7% to its price to trade at $10,922 at press time. As Bitcoin has seen significant volatility this week, with its price having dipped below $9,500, the cryptocurrency is down around 3% over the past 7 days at press time.
Ether (ETH), the second cryptocurrency by market cap, is up over 5% and trading at $232 at press time. The top altcoin is down 13.4% over the past 7 days.
Ripple (XRP), the third top cryptocurrency by market cap, added 6.4% to trade at $0.339, also seeing a notable growth over the past 7 days, adding up to about 2.6%.
Bitcoin SV (BSV), the ninth top cryptocurrency by market cap, has added over 25% to its value today, seeing the biggest growth among the top 20 coins by market cap.
As of press time, total market capitalization amounts to $298 billion after that number dropped below $250 billion earlier this week. Daily trade volume amounts to around $63 billion.
The new wave of green on crypto markets follows a recent bullish prediction by managing director and quant strategist at Fundstrat Global Advisors Sam Doctor, who suggested that much-anticipated Bakkt’s Bitcoin futures contracts will launch in Q3 2019.
Additionally, India’s Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur said yesterday that there is no legislation in India that expressly bans citizens from using cryptocurrencies.