bear market

No Need to Overreact as Crypto Markets Plunge Deeper and BitTorrent ICO Raises $7 Million Minutes

The price of Bitcoin has plunged to new 2019 lows but the senior market analyst at eToro says there is no need to panic. The BitTorrent ICO takes only 18 minutes to raise $7 million and breath a bit of life to the ICO sector at the brink of collapse due to regulatory challenges. Crypto exchange Liqui has closed shop citing liquidity challenges as their proposed policy changes were snubbed by users. Litecoin founder Charlie Lee wants to make the digital asset privacy-focused and challenge coins such as Monero or Zcash.

Bitcoin reaches the lowest price of the year so far, but no need to overreact – says eToro market analyst

The price of Bitcoin, the flagship and the most valuable digital asset has dipped less than $3,500, its lowest printing value since Dec. 14.  A single Bitcoin unit is currently trading at $3,439 as the crypto carnage continues.

According to some, Bitcoin is back to its old days of 2018. However, the senior market analyst at eToro Mati Greenspan told Business Insider today (Jan. 28) that there is no need to overreact as a result of the price drop.

“There’s no need for overreaction here. Bitcoin is continuing to trade within the core area of support between $3,000 and $3,500, within the broader range of $3,000 – $5,000, where it’s been since November 2018,” said Greenspan.

“The cryptoasset movement today is nothing more than technical,” Greenspan explained that there is nothing alarming about today’s price movement.

Hedge fund manager and economist Mark Dow tweeted that the price action is an indication that the bear market may stick around for some time.

“#bitcoin has been dead quiet for several weeks around about 3,600. Last time bitcoin was quiet like this was when it was up at 6,500, it ended disastrously. Based on the pattern. odds are we get a similarly sharp drop again soon–may even have started tonight,” tweeted Dow.

The price plunge has hit almost the entire market with the top 10 digital assets down between 3 percent and 11 percent at the time of writing.

In the last 24 hours, the market cap has dropped from $118.8 billion to just over $112.5 billion, wiping away more than $6 billion in the carnage.

BitTorrent ICO sold out in 18 minutes, raises $7 million

BitTorrent’s TRC-10 token sale on Binance Launchpad was sold out in 18 minutes. According to Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ), the token sale would have lasted as little as 18 seconds had it not been for a system issue.

“Both sessions concluded. Took about 18 minutes, due to a system issue, would have taken 18 seconds otherwise.  Demand was astronomical,” tweeted CZ.

$4.1 million was raised in the first session and a further $2.7 million in the second session. In total, $6.8 million in Tron (TRX) and Binance (BNB) tokens. The latest offering adds to the $20 million raised earlier in a private sale.

The project is now worth around $300 million but there is no evidence to suggest that token holders have share rights.

The token sale excluded residents from at least 36 countries including the U.S, Mainland China, a mix of African, Asian, and Islamic states. In short, the ICO sale was open to Europe, Russia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and much of Latin America.

The inclusion of Singapore is rather surprising because the country recently decided to take action against ICOs. However, the country does not require licensing for ICOs below $5 million.

BitTorrent is a blockchain project for peer-to-peer file sharing and has 100 million active monthly users from 138 countries.

This latest development is a big development for the ICO market which is predicted to be undergoing a slow death mostly due to regulatory concerns.

Canada messaging App Kik ready to challenge U.S SEC for a possible ICO action

The U.S Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is flexing its regulatory muscles but not everyone is happy about and some are even ready to legally challenge the agency.

Canada’s chat app Kik says that it is ready to fight the SEC if the agency decides to take action against the crypto firm’s initial coin offering (ICO) that took place in 2017. Kik raised $100 million in its token sale.

Kik founder and CEO Ted Livingston said the company’s token, Kin, works like a currency and is not an “unregistered security,” reported the Wall Street Journal on Jan. 27.

In February last year, SEC Commissioner Jay Clayton showed that he and the agency were pressing their feet down when he said: “I believe every ICO I’ve seen is a security.” He added: “I want to go back to separating ICOs and cryptocurrencies. ICOs that are securities offerings, we should regulate them like we regulate securities offerings. End of story.”

In a Medium blog post, Livingstone said that Clayton’s statements mean that everything from “Ethereum to down” is a security. Livingstone went on to say that this is what everyone is fighting but no one is ready to talk about it.

“For all of us to be able to continue hiring, innovating, and competing, we need to change that,” he said in the blog post.

Livingstone says that Kin and other projects do not qualify to be called securities under the Howey Test. He acknowledges that the sector needs regulation but not in this manner.

Crypto exchange Liqui shuts down due to liquidity challenges

Ukraine-based cryptocurrency exchange Liqui announced via Reddit that it is shutting down its services because the users of the exchange did not approve the change in policies proposed by the team.

The press statement informing users about the imminent closure sounded as if the customers did not want to continue working with the exchange.

“We gave you the right to decide whether you want to be with us in our crypto journey by accepting the changes,” said the press statement.

As a result of the policy changes refusal, the platform claims that it cannot provide liquidity to the remaining clients. Moreover, the company does not see any economic sense in continuing to provide its services to its clients.

The exchange said that closing their platform broke their hearts but had to do so because they did not want to return to the point they were in a month ago – it must have been a very bad situation.

The users have been given 30 days to withdraw their digital assets stored on the platform. Liqui will give its users another 30-day grace period to withdraw their digital assets holdings after which the exchange cannot guarantee that its website will still be maintained.

The exchange kept open its options of returning in the future but that “depends on the market which has significantly changed since 2017.”

Liqui was accused of being a scam last year after the exchange delisted several altcoins such as BAT, Melon, etc.

Ledger releases all-in-one mobile app for Android and iOS smartphones

Ledger, one of the leading companies in blockchain technology and cryptocurrency security announced the release of its highly anticipated Ledger Live mobile app on Jan. 28. The new mobile app allows the users of Ledger Nano S and Ledger Blue to view the balance of their crypto holdings by scanning a LiveQR code presented on the Ledger Live desktop version.

“Currently featured in consultation mode, the app enables you to check the value of your crypto assets anywhere you go,” read part of the blog post.

The blog post added that “Thanks to the mobile app, you will be able to wirelessly transact everywhere with the Ledger Nano X. In the future, Ledger Nano S users (Android smartphones only) will be able to transact as well through the use of an OTG cable. We are working on having the same features for the Ledger Live mobile app as the desktop version.”

The Ledger Nano X is able to connect both Android and iOS smartphones using Bluetooth.

Crypto startup Arwen wants users to trade on exchanges but keep keys away from them

Crypto startup Arwen (formerly known as Commonwealth Crypto) announced on Jan. 28 via a blog post that it has launched its testnet protocol that gives users complete control of their keys while they trade on exchanges.

Arwen CEO Sharon Goldberg said the platform is a two-layer protocol designed specifically for traders. This simply means that trades will be handled off-chain, similar to the way that the Lightning Network works.

“You put a smart contract on a blockchain where it locks up coins and once it’s locked up, you can do all sorts of transactions … without posting those transactions to the blockchain,” explained Goldberg.

The blog post noted that over 99 percent of the trading occurs on centralized exchanges or OTC trading desk. These exchanges are preferred because of their access to liquid markets, however, they are prime targets for thieves because of the vast amount of coins sitting on their platforms

“By trading with Arwen, you can maintain custody of coins while you trade on a centralized exchange. You can self-custody your coins in your own hardware wallet, software wallet, or other solution of choice. You don’t need to transfer your coins to the exchange’s omnibus wallet. You don’t need to upload your keys to a third-party web server,” the blog post assured users of the safety of their digital assets.

Self-custody is in demand and even during the prevailing bear market, hardware wallet sales are on the rise.

Arwen currently supports transactions made with select digital assets that include Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash. Plans are underway to roll out support for privacy coin Zcash, Ethereum, and ERC-20 tokens.

Litecoin founder ready to add Confidential Transactions

The founder of Litecoin Charlie Lee says that he is ready to add Confidential Transactions (CTs) in a move set to make Litecoin a privacy-focused coin that can rival coins such as Monero and Zcash.

“Fungibility is the only property of sound money that is missing from Bitcoin & Litecoin. Now that the scaling debate is behind us, the next battleground will be on fungibility and privacy. I am now focused on making Litecoin more fungible by adding Confidential Transactions,” tweeted Lee.

When Bitcoin first hit the scene, it was seen and considered as a completely private way of carrying out transactions. However, it has since been discovered that the popular digital asset is only pseudo-anonymous, meaning that people’s Bitcoin transactions can be linked to their identities.

To address Bitcoin’s shortcomings, coins such as Zcash and Monero burst on the scene and they have grown since then. If Litecoin surely goes on to integrate CTs, then it has the potential to surge past some privacy-focused cryptocurrencies and disrupt the crypto sector. With Lee focused on adding CTs, Litecoin has a real chance of addressing Bitcoin’s privacy-related issues.

Multicoin Capital announces leading a $2.5 million investment round in The Graph

Multicoin Capital, “a thesis-driven cryptofund focused on driving returns for investors long-term” announced on Jan. 28 via a blog post that it has led a $2.5 million investment round in The Graph, a platform for scalable queries for a decentralized future.

Blockchains accumulate huge amounts of data, but their database structure is so complex that not everyone can easily collect and use the data. The Graph is building an open source software that allows developers building decentralized applications (Dapps) to quickly access the information on the blockchains.

The co-founder and managing partner at Multicoin Capital Kyle Samani said in the blog post, “Virtually everyone in the web3 development community has come to recognize how important and underserved this layer of the web3 stack really is. The Graph has emerged as the market leader, with dozens of teams using the service in closed beta right now.”

Other investors who participated in the round of funding include Compound VC, CoinFund, DTC, Kilowatt, Reciprocal Ventures, SPC, etc.

Tangem to produce physical banknotes of Marshall Islands’ SOV cryptocurrency

The maker of blockchain smart card wallets Tangem announced on Jan. 28 that it is producing physical banknotes for the Marshall Islands’ decentralized digital currency known as the sovereign (SOV). The new digital currency will work alongside the USD as an official legal tender in the small country that heavily relies on donor funding.

The SOV is based on blockchain technology and will support faster, cheaper, and global transactions.

“The Tangem / SOV partnership is designed to ensure all citizens of the Marshall Islands have fair and equal access to their digital currency, whether or not they have internet connection. Thanks to the immediate transaction validation, zero fees and no Internet connection requirements for the end users Tangem banknotes will enable the off-chain physical circulation of the SOV among all SOV holders and will not impose the technical infrastructure burden on the RMI,” reads part of the announcement.

Each Tangem smart card will take the form of a physical banknote but will be fitted with a blockchain-enabled microprocessor.

The new partnership comes after the chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Christine Lagarde urged central banks to adopt digital currencies.

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