After one of the worst years in decades, 2019
is not looking too promising for the stock
market.
Trump’s announcement that the government shutdown
could go on for months threatens to further
destabilize the market.
However, the future could be much brighter
in the crypto market.
This week Bakkt raised $182.5 million, BitTorrent
launches Tron-based token and despite calling
90% of crypto projects B.S, Ripple co-founder
Jed McCaleb is bullish on crypto.
Also this week: an exclusive interview with
the CEO of Civic and Shark Tank South Africa’s
host Vinny Lingham.
Hi I’m Mike and this is your Holder’s Digest!
The week’s best performer is Ethereum, which
surpassed XRP, reclaiming its position as
a number one altcoin.
Here are the latest market updates:
90% of crypto projects are B.S!
Harsh words from Jed McCaleb Stellar and Ripple
co-founder who was pretty scathing about most
crypto projects.
One project, in particular, provoked his ire:
“Things like Tron, it’s just garbage.
But people dump tons of money into it, these
things that just do not technically work.”
The Stellar’s co-founder also thinks the
majority of financial institutions won’t
use Bitcoin.
McCaleb, who is also the Ripple co-founder,
is clearly not a believer but does have faith
in blockchain, he said:
“It doesn’t need to be the Bitcoin blockchain,
but if it’s not a public chain, then you’re
missing the point.”
McCaleb did not completely dismiss the leading
crypto, rather that there isn’t a cryptocurrency
that provides all the solutions:
“There are some things Bitcoin is good at,
some things Ethereum is good at, and some
things Stellar is good at,” “And none
of them can do all the things well.
That’s just not how software works.”
Despite the fact that he was so dismissive
of 90% of the market, McCaleb remained bullish
about the 10% that he deems worthy; rather
than calling 2018 the year of the bear he
simply described it as crypto “calming down.”
His comments, of course, are to be taken with
a pinch of salt.
Last month Stellar partnered with crypto wallet
provider Blockchain.com to expand the circulation
and uptake of Lumens with a massive $125 million
airdrop.
P2P file sharing platform BitTorrent launched
its own native token based on the Tron protocol,
the BitTorrent Token or BTT.
According to the company, by exchanging the
BitTorrent Token, users will be able to optimize
the network speed, thus allowing faster downloads.
The BitTorrent protocol has always had a system
of incentives built in.
Users who upload faster are more likely to
be able to download quickly.
Even before the Tron acquisition, our R&D
team was looking at ways to add blockchain
based incentives to the protocol.
Now with the addition of Tron’s expertise,
we can accelerate that effort.
Let’s talk about some of the key features
of the project.
The first is faster downloads.
By creating a system where people can bid
to accelerate downloads, you’ll be able to
choose to get things more quickly than you
otherwise would.
Which leads me to the next point: more seeds.
Currently, there’s no incentive for users
to seed files for long periods of time.
By adding tokens we’ll make it so that you
can effectively earn for seeding.
And create incentives for users not only to
seed longer but to dedicate more of their
bandwidth and storage overall.
BitTorrent, which claims to have over 100
million users globally, was acquired by TRON
for an undisclosed amount in July last year.
Back then TRON’s CEO Justin Sun defined
BitTorrent as “the first decentralized Internet
protocol with large-scale global application”.
In August, BitTorrent announced its plans
to merge its p2p network to the Tron blockchain
in what is called “Project Atlas”.
The BitTorrent protocol, which pioneered peer-to-peer
online file sharing, served as a major source
of inspiration for the authors of the TRON
whitepaper.
The launch of the BTT is considered a major
step in realizing Tron’s ambitions to create
a decentralized content distribution platform
based on blockchain.
Commenting on the launch of the new token,
Justin Sun said: “In one giant leap, we
can introduce blockchain to hundreds of millions
of users around the world and empower a new
generation of content creators with the tools
to distribute their content directly to others
on the web.”
January 3 was a special day for Bitcoin.
Exactly 10 years ago, the first block was
created on the Bitcoin blockchain.
The so-called Genesis Block contains no reference
to previous blocks, it is hard-coded in the
network’s software and contains all the
variables from which the ensuing blockchain
was generated.
Three months after the release of the Bitcoin
whitepaper, the block zero was mined on January
3, 2009, with a reward of 50 BTC, which today
would be worth around $191,000.
At the time, however, Bitcoin value was still
inestimable, as Bitcoin’s very first trading
price was established over a year later.
Many see the creation of Bitcoin as a response
to the 2008 global financial crisis.
Bitcoin was supposed to offer an alternative
financial system.
Commemorating the 10th anniversary of the
Bitcoin blockchain, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong
called Bitcoin “his first love”.
In a series of tweets, he pointed out that
Bitcoin is “the most popular asset on Coinbase
among new customers and longtime hodlers”.
He also expressed an optimistic view for the
future of the first cryptocurrency.
He said: “I believe we’re still at the
beginning.
The white paper signaled the start of a movement
and the full promise of Bitcoin is still yet
to be realized.”
I think most people right now are very skeptical
about crypto.
And that’s a good thing.
It’s not about the technology it’s about the
adoption cycle curve and there is no adoption
of crypto in mainstream the number one use
case is obviously trading.
Right.
So other than trading on it what do you do
with it and the trading is very much a speculative
game.
We have to prove ourselves to the rest of
the world that we’ll be building has value
and the people will use it and there’ll be
adoption.
And if we can’t do that then it by definition
has no value.
So how do you replace existing systems with
blockchain based ones which are orders of
magnitude better than what people have today.
In many cases, the improvement doesn’t exist.
So people aren’t moving towards blockchain.
It’s a little bit of a pipe dream right now.
I do not think we’ve reached the bottom yet.
I think there’s more pain to come.
So I think we dropped below 3000 on Bitcoin
and I think it works and it’ll get worse before
it gets better.
I can be wrong but my gut feeling is that
we go below 3000.
I think it’s another two or three or four
months in that range and then if we don’t
get out of there then it dips and goes on
forever.
So this is a time to play out but I think
this is too much fear pressure on the system.
I don’t think we can hold the current lows.
I think there are there is a limited number
of coins that will make every three and a
half thousand coins out there.
Honestly, the party looking at 100 or 200
that actually make it into real utility and
that’s 3 percent of the market surviving which
is ok. 3 to 5 percent makes sense.
I don’t think we can go with a one size fits
all.
Bitcoin is the only coin that never survive
approach.
It doesn’t make sense.
There’s just so many things Bitcoin can’t
do that other coins can do.
And I use cases in society for those on the
coins and little find markets.
It’s the same way the world doesn’t have a
one world currency right now which is kind
of a good thing you know in a sense and Bitcoin
is focused on being a store of value.
And I think there’s other know other use cases
that needs to be tackled.
So typically keep your crypto investments
five to 10 percent of your portfolio and you
know you might you might think well that’s
crazy I can make so much money but you can
also lose it all in.
Yeah like we feel we’ve seen people go bankrupt
literally this past year.
It’s a speculative investment during thesis
mania.
And in the long term, I’m sure it’ll be fine.
I’m very excited about being part of the industry.
I’ve tried to keep crypto a very balanced
part of my portfolio so I don’t lose perspective
because it’s very easy to lose perspective
and oil wealth is stuck in Bitcoin and crypto
whatever and then you lose perspective on
the rest of the world and how the world thinks
and so I think people need to just have good
common sense practical investment mindset.
If you want to gamble in a casino the returns
are way better.
You hit it fewer follow a strong investment
portfolio that gets you to retirement.
You got to be a little more conservative.
You can’t take these risks and be young and
take an interest in you one because you have
time to fix it.
But as you get older you should be a lot more
cautious about where you put your money and
make sure that you go for returns which are
hoping market-beating and great and be cognizant
of what volatility can do to a portfolio because
volatility kills returns.
You know one day you’re wealthy the next day
you’re not.
Bakkt is back baby!
On the last day of 2018, the institutional
investor-focused crypto platform announced
it has completed the first round of funding
of $182.5 million from 12 partners and investors
including Boston Consulting Group, Galaxy
Digital and Horizons Ventures – Microsoft’s
venture capital arm.
Bakkt is planning to introduce physically
delivered Bitcoin Futures.
Unlike CME and CBOE which both launched Bitcoin
futures with cash settlements a year ago,
Bakkt’s futures will pay out in Bitcoins.
For this company is now seeking approvals
and exemptions from the Commodity Futures
Trading Commission since CFTC statutes are
written to account for cash, securities, and
agricultural commodities, but not Bitcoin.
In a separate announcement, Bakkts’s parent
company ICE posted a notice that they “expect
to provide an updated launch timeline in early
2019, for the trading, clearing, and warehousing
of the Bakkt Bitcoin Daily Futures Contract.”
Bakkt is not the first investment in the crypto
space for ICE.
The exchange giant has also a stake in Coinbase.
Many believe Bakkt will lead to a market rebound.
Among them Tom Lee who we spoke to last year.
Bakkt is going to be I think it’s going to
become a very regulated and large pool of
liquidity.
I think it’s going to attract a lot of miners
to sell production into that exchange and
a lot of institutions will be there and as
you know if something becomes the center of
liquidity that’s in search of price transparency
especially because you know ICE is a regulated
entity.
2019 could be the year regulators ease up
on crypto and Institutional investors get
on board.
But is this a good thing?
Are rules good or do they compromise the decentralized
dream?
let us know in the comments!
And as always, like, subscribe and hodl!