Is Bitcoin The Best Retirement Investment Option? Many Now Believe So

Is Bitcoin The Best Retirement Investment Option? Many Now Believe So
More analysts than ever are encouraging young people to take advantage of the current market dip and begin investing in Bitcoin for retirement. Whereas this idea is nothing new, current forces in the legacy financial space are making it more appealing. At least one analyst asserts that a mere one Bitcoin will provide a vastly better long-term return than traditional savings. Inflation Could Be A Game Changer Over the course of the past forty years retirement plans in developed countries have gradually shifted from fixed benefit programs, such as standard pension plans, to defined contribution programs, such as 401ks. Whereas the wisdom of this transition is subject to debate, there is no question that millions now rely on some form of personal savings for most, if not all, of their retirement income. For those with ample nest eggs, this arrangement has been fine. However, decades of low inflation and brief recessions have played a role in this success. Should the current global financial crisis result in a surge of inflation, retirees could find themselves in serious trouble. For those still in the workforce, long term devaluation of fiats such as Dollars and Euros could be devastating. Years of prudent investment could disappear as the earning power of retirement savings evaporates. Analyst Davincij15 has pointed this out in a recent tweet: Growing up I saw this and thought yeah but I don't know how much $150,000 will buy me at 65 so I don't know how much I will need. Save up to just 1 #Bitcoin at 65 and you will have more than you need. pic.twitter.com/tTXILSnRdF — Davincij15 (@Davincij15) April 11, 2020 Simply put, he acknowledges the wisdom of beginning to save while young, yet notes that all may be for naught if inflation becomes a problem. Not surprisingly, he advocates Bitcoin as a possible hedge.  Bitcoin Moving Into Retirement Portfolios Much has been said of Bitcoin as a potential safe haven during the current economic meltdown. However, the long-term consideration of this idea is far more notable. The fact that crypto ownership skews toward the young is well-known, and more than ever workers under 35 are choosing to add blockchain assets to their retirement portfolios. Part of this trend is, of course, related to the belief that crypto will continue to vastly outperform traditional investments. However, these young investors may now be making this choice to protect their retirement from inflation or other economic downturns. In other words, crypto is likely to be added to hard assets like gold and treasury bonds as a component of a properly managed portfolio. There is little doubt that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are a permanent element of the global financial landscape. Now, more than ever, current events are giving legitimacy to this new asset class. Do you think Bitcoin is the nest retirement investment option available to us? Share what you think in the comments below.  Images via Aaron Burden from Unsplash, Twitter: @Davincij15  

Bitcoin Price Could Drop Below $3000: Silk Road Founder

Bitcoin Price Could Drop Below $3000: Silk Road Founder
Ross Ulbricht is predicting that Bitcoin’s price will move downward in the short term, drawing a parallel to a previous years-long cycle that led the flagship cryptocurrency through several waves of volatility. He notes, however, that the flagship cryptocurrency will eventually recover and achieve a vastly higher value. Long-Term Bitcoin Market Cycle Is Driving The Value Looking at market data stretching back to 2011, Ulbricht asserts that Bitcoin has moved through two key cycles. The first stretched from 2011 to the end of 2017, and had several different waves, ending when Bitcoin reached its all-time high of USD $20,000. Bitcoin is now in its second cycle, and presently mirrors 2014, when Bitcoin fell sharply and remained bearish for roughly two years. He has posted this chart outlining his analysis: The Silk Road founder claims that the flagship cryptocurrency may remain in a bearish trend until next year. Also, the price could go much lower, possibly falling below $3,000 before it recovers. Not surprisingly, he predicts tremendous angst among Bitcoin advocates during this phase, yet insists that it will be an excellent opportunity to buy, as was the case during earlier low points. Ulbricht remains optimistic for the long-term future of Bitcoin, noting that once this cycle ends the rebound will all but certainly result in much higher prices. In referring to his forecast of lower prices, he states: It will take fortitude to buy in such an environment, but the rewards as wave III takes prices to new highs will be well worth it. Analysis Excludes Outside Market Factors There is no shortage of technical analysis that seeks to predict Bitcoin’s next market move. Whereas Ulbricht’s contribution to this pool is noteworthy, it is also narrowly focused. The cryptocurrency market represents a new asset class that tends to defy many standard predictive formulas. Most notably, unlike established commodities markets, substantial new investment moves into the crypto space on a daily basis. This growth is due to the fact that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are still in their nascent stages. Once mass adoption begins to gain traction, the level of investment from both individuals and institutions will be enormous, and will no doubt shatter any current value estimates. The upcoming block reward halving could be the catalyst that triggers the long-awaited investment boost that is sure to move into the crypto market. Even Ulbricht’s chart shows that the price began to move up after the last halving in 2016. If this pattern holds true, then the idea that Bitcoin could fall much lower is pure fantasy. Do you think that Bitcoin’s price will drop below the $3000 mark? Let us know what you think in the comments below. Images via Bitcoinist Media Library, Ross Ulbricht

Are Bitcoin Miners Pumping BTC’s Hashrate to Profit from Halving?

Are Bitcoin Miners Pumping BTC's Hashrate to Profit from Halving?
There’s a notable increase in bitcoin’s mining hash rate, as miners now seek to acquire as many coins as possible before May’s block reward halving. As Always, Economic Incentives Drive Mining Not surprisingly, Bitcoin’s major price drop last month resulted in an equally notable drop in mining. Older, less-efficient rigs simply became too unprofitable to operate. Now that the price is moving back up, miners are putting these rigs back in action. There is presently a substantial incentive to put older mining rigs to work. Temporary volatility notwithstanding, Bitcoin’s price is up about 40% since mid-March. However, the hash rate is only up by 12.5%. It is thus not surprising that miners are taking advantage of the opportunity for more profit. This boost in hash rate has not gone unnoticed by analysts. It is a reflection of overall interest in Bitcoin investment and adoption. Analyst Plan B has tweeted: #Bitcoin halving ETA: May 11Miners are really pumping up hashrateNext difficulty adjustment will be uphttps://t.co/zMdxlteR6Z pic.twitter.com/XeN5NcfwLP — PlanB (@100trillionUSD) April 11, 2020 Also, over the past few days, Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin SV have both had block reward halvings. Not surprisingly, both platforms have seen their hash rates plummet. Because Bitcoin can be mined with the same ASIC-based rigs, former BCH and BSV miners are now switching networks. In fact, miners have long swapped between these and other cryptocurrencies that use the SHA-256 algorithm to find the platform that offers the best profitability. It is possible that many of these miners will return to mining altcoins after the Bitcoin halving. Interest In Bitcoin Halving Growing It is reasonable to assume that the hash rate will continue to accelerate as the halving approaches, as miners will want to load up on as many Bitcoins as possible before the block reward drops. No doubt many long-dormant rigs will be turned back on, even if presently unprofitable, as confidence in a major market recovery takes over. In fact, excitement, around the halving continues to grow, as analysts offer a steady stream of opinions on how it will affect the market price. Searches for “Bitcoin Halving” on Google are steadily increasing, with a major boost expected over the next few weeks. Overall Bitcoin network activity continues to move up as well, leaving little doubt that investors are planning to buy now while the price is relatively low. Mining activity is yet another metric indicating that the Bitcoin network remains strong, and is operating as designed. It will no doubt fluctuate over the next several weeks, yet will almost certainly increase in the long-term. Do you think Bitcoin miners are artificially pumping the hash rate? Lets us know your thoughts in the comments below. Images via Bitcoinist Media Library

Bitcoin Network Activity Shows BTC’s Changing More Hands Than Usual

Bitcoin Network Activity is Up, Are Folks Trading BTC More?
When Bitcoin’s price fell sharply four weeks ago network activity dropped as investors began to put their coins into storage. This trend is reversing as the daily transaction number is once again increasing, and coins are on the move. Is Bitcoin Price Recovery Bringing Back Traders? Glassnode has posted a chart of active Bitcoins that shows how the number moving across the network began to accelerate rapidly last August, only to level off last month. Now, this number is once again picking up. Overall network activity is also once again increasing after a sharp drop in March, as seen in this chart from Blockchain.info: The key takeaway from this information is that the flagship cryptocurrency is once again on the move. The changes in activity on the network may be relatively small, but they still demonstrate a shift away from hodling Bitcoins to using them.  In all likelihood, these increases are due to an uptick in trading, which will no doubt take place as prices rise. Many investors see the market recovery as an opportunity to make a quick profit from what is clearly a growing demand for cryptocurrency.  It is worth noting that the upcoming block halving is also providing a strong incentive to acquire Bitcoin now before the supply drops in mid-May. Also, fear of inflation and a continued global economic slowdown is driving many to put their assets into safe havens, for which Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are ideally suited.  Data Demonstrates Network Strength Whereas activity volume on the Bitcoin platform ebbs and flows from month to month, it is worth noting that the network continues to work as designed. Fees remain low, and confirmation times are relatively quick.  The network will begin to show signs of congestion at around 400,000 transactions per day, which is substantially more than the present number. This last happened in 2017, resulting in slow transactions and high fees. The Lightning Network now exists to help prevent such problems from ever happening again, yet needs more work to make it reliable and user friendly enough for mass use. It is reasonable to assume that the number of active Bitcoins will continue to increase along with overall crypto adoption. Activity across the blockchain space is accelerating, much of which is taking place in areas such as decentralized finance and supply chain tracking. Present data clearly indicates that interest in this new asset class continues to grow.  Is Bitcoin trading activity up? Share your thoughts in the comments below.  Images via Shutterstock, Glassnode, Blockchain.com

Why Bitcoin Analysts See This Dip As Incredible Opportunity To Buy

Why Bitcoin Analysts See This Dip As Incredible Opportunity To Buy
Today’s Bitcoin price drop below USD $7k has taken some by surprise, yet it is causing little concern among analysts, In fact, the mood is optimistic, as most believe that the market will recover quickly, with the flagship crypto currency soon surging much higher. BITCOIN PRICE MOVING UP DESPITE CORRECTION Today’s market dip has not caused a notable shift in Bitcoin’s general upward movement since mid-March. In fact, a look at the chart from CoinMarketCap shows that drops of $200-400 have taken place several times in the past few weeks, only to rebound relatively quickly. Thus, if the pattern is to hold Bitcoin would need to hover around $6,900 for a day or two before coming back up. There are some analysts that seem to think that prices may remain low for a few days, yet most seem to think that the price will not go much lower, if at all. For example, Pierre has tweeted: Not excluding a simple bearish continuation from here after a few more hours of consolidation @ current level, giving time for H1/H4 to reset a bit more, and maybe even taking 6,800-6,850 lows before a real bounce. I guess that's it, I hope it helps. Cheers mates, later. 6/6 — Pierre 🌐 (@pierre_crypt0) April 10, 2020 Although those that were hoping that the price would remain above $7k may be disappointed, the mood is that there is little concern for a major drop. OUTSIDE FACTORS ALL POINT TO BIG GAINS Analysts of all types remain very firm in their assertions that Bitcoin stands to gain significantly due to a range of upcoming events. For example, much discussed block reward halving will re-shape the market, making existing Bitcoins more valuable. It seems as if everyone agrees that this one simple change in the protocol will have a major market impact. Also, fear continues to grow that the U.S. Federal Reserve will continue to devalue the Dollar in its attempt to alleviate the growing economic crisis. In fact, few now believe that the Fed will stop at just 2.3 trillion. Many point to the fact that this amount is a mere drop in the bucket when compared to other government liabilities such as the national debt and unfunded entitlements. Meltem Demirors, Chief Strategy Officer at CoinShares, has tweeted: wait until @Bitcoin discovers the additional $120T of unfunded and underfunded social security, Medicare, and Medicaid liabilities 🤯 https://t.co/XXgYosocPh — Meltem Demirors (@Melt_Dem) April 8, 2020 The simple implication is that before long the government will be forced to print an exponentially greater amount of cash in order to pay for these programs. Such a move will cause much higher inflation, and all but certainly drive more Americans into crypto investment. Bitcoin would clearly benefit most. Thus, there is a growing sense that Bitcoin presently sits at what could be a bargain-basement price. Should the current patterns continue,  now is clearly the time to invest. Do you think this current dip is a good Bitcoin buying opportunity? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @Melt_Dem @pierre_crypt0, BTC/USD chart by Tradingview

Huobi Korea Delists Monero Over Nth Room Case, Bithumb May Follow

Huobi Korea Delists Monero Over Nth Room Case, Bithumb May Follow
Reports have emerged that participants in a Korean-based sexual exploitation ring used Monero for criminal acts. As a result, Bithumb is considering delisting the cryptocurrency. Huobi has already dropped it from its Korean exchange.  EXCHANGES CITE PRIVACY CONCERNS OVER MONERO The “Nth Room Case” is an unfolding criminal investigation unfolding in South Korea that allegedly involved sexual crimes broadcast in Telegram chat rooms. South Korean authorities have inferred that part of the operation involved Monero transactions.  Yesterday Huobi Korea delisted Monero, citing “low trading volumes and anonymity functions.” It did not directly reference the Nth Room investigation in its announcement, and the Singapore-based exchange has not delisted the privacy-centric cryptocurrency on the rest of its platform. South Korean newspaper Sisi Journal now reports that Bithumb is also considering delisting Monero. Specifically, the article states that Bithumb has a policy to drop cryptocurrencies that are used primarily for criminal acts, and that an internal committee is reviewing whether or not Monero now falls under this designation. Bithumb is the only notable Korean exchange to still trade Monero. Upbit delisted it last year, also citing the concerns over the platform’s anonymity. Thus, such a move would be a significant blow to the cryptocurrency.  DELISTINGS INTENSIFY DEBATE OVER ANONYMITY Exchanges continue to make efforts to transition into legitimate financial brokers, and thus they are increasingly cooperating with regulators. It is thus not surprising that many are now less willing to list coins that enable anonymous transactions. Although far from the only privacy coin, Monero is by-far the most popular. Anti-crypto activists frequently target it, asserting that it is used primarily for a range of criminal activity such as money laundering, drug purchases, and tax evasion. Not surprisingly, some exchanges are willing to delist it to improve their reputation with lawmakers and would-be customers.   It is worth noting that the overwhelming majority of cryptocurrency transactions are legal, including those involving Monero. The allegations of crypto being centered around criminality have long been debunked. More importantly, delisting coins with privacy features will not stop their use. In fact, activity on the Monero network has increased over the past several months despite being dropped from several exchanges.  Although a debate exists over whether or not privacy-centric coins are positive for cryptocurrency adoption, their proliferation continues. Anonymous use is now possible on many platform, including Bitcoin. Thus, it should be considered a permanent feature of crypto use, and considered by lawmakers when drafting policies on blockchain use. Do you think Monero should be delisted by Bithumb and Huobi Korea? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock

Texas Regulators Clamp Down on Bitcoin ‘Ultra Mining’ Firm

Texas Regulators Clamp Down on Bitcoin 'Ultra Mining' Firm
The Texas State Securities Board has issued a cease and desist order against what it alleges is a fraudulent bitcoin mining company. The state regulator asserts that Ultra BTC Mining has been selling illegal investment schemes as well as claiming charitable donations that cannot be verified. BITCOIN MINING COMPANY OFFERED UNREALISTIC RETURNS According to the order, Ultra Mining has already raised USD $18 million by promising huge profits to naive investors. The state regulator states: The company is promising eye-opening returns. According to the order, they are telling potential investors that a $10,000 investment in computing power will return nearly $10,500 per year. A $50,000 investment will return nearly $52,000 per year. Additionally, the Securities Board asserts that the company and its agent, Laura Branch, are claiming to have donated $100,000 to UNICEF for COVID-19 relief, yet refuse to provide verification of the donation. A key element to this investigation is the board’s assertion that Ultra Mining will not give details into the “material facts about its operation.” The company has apparently refused to disclose where the mining takes place, what relationships it has to mining pools, or what hardware it uses. In other words, the regulator believes the entire operation could be nothing more than a ponzi-style scam. The Alabama State Securities Commission has joined Texas in bringing action against the company. REGULATOR ASSERTS SECURITIES FRAUD Noteworthy in the order is the statement that Ultra Mining is engaging in operations that violate relevant securities laws. Specifically, it states that the hash power being sold qualifies as a security due to it being an investment with potential return. The issue over whether or not cryptocurrencies qualify as securities is complex, and has yet to be fully defined by financial regulators. The charge against Ultra Mining sidesteps this concern by addressing the hash power used in mining, yet this too raises questions. Bitcoin mining is growing rapidly in Texas, owing to the Lone Star State’s cheap power and deregulated electricity market. By treating hash power as a security, the state’s financial regulators are opening the door to a range of new legal complexities that could interfere with these operations. With state lawmakers eager to lure more mining operators, it can be assumed that the government will be quick to better define how both cryptocurrency and hash power investment should be legally defined. Nevertheless, doing so will not be easy, as cryptocurrencies represent a new asset class that do not easily fit into existing securities categories. Do you think the Texas regulator’s latest cease and desist order is justified? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock

Ripple Partnership Discussed By Bank of America Exec

bank of america ripple
In an interview discussing emerging digital payment technology a lead executive at Bank of America praised Ripple as a partner. She noted Ripple’s passage of the bank’s compliance processes, and praised its ability to deliver quality services. RIPPLE PRAISED FOR ITS POTENTIAL TO INTEGRATE WITH BANK SERVICES Julie Harris, head of global banking, digital strategy made the comments on a podcast published by Bank of America. The conversation centered around the emerging payment options available for businesses, and the increasing need for faster, more efficient methods. On this topic Harris stated: …it’s not about our platform and our capabilities, it’s about you as a client and the infrastructure you have and the ability for us to integrate, whether that’s with platforms and capabilities that we built or partnerships that we have with the likes of Ripple or Swift. These are Fintechs that we’re partnering with. They’ve come through all of our rigor of legal and compliance and we’re able to leverage our banking as a platform to deliver that to you. Harris did not give any further details on how the bank will be using Ripple. Given that she mentioned Swift in the same context, it is reasonable to assume that cross-border payments are part of the plan. The full transcript of the podcast can be found here. STATEMENT ADDS TO RIPPLENET RUMORS There has long been speculation that Bank of America plans to begin using Ripple. Last October Ripple confirmed that it had been working with the bank since 2016, yet only acknowledged that this was part of a pilot project. Last year the banking giant hired at least one Ripple specialist, yet did not provide further details. The key rumor is that Bank of America plans to begin using RippleNet. If true, such a move would have a massive impact on the platform. However, it is worth noting that there are other means by which the bank could embrace Ripple technology, thus such assumptions are premature. Bank of America has not yet made any official announcements about its plans for Ripple. Thus, Harris’ statement is noteworthy. There is no doubt, however, that the legacy banking industry is rapidly exploring the use of distributed ledger technology for a wide range of applications. Thus, blockchain assets are all but certain to become a mainstream element of global finance in the near future. In that context, Ripple is in a strong position moving forward. What do you make of the recent BoA comments on Ripple? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock

Ethereum Surges 14% Today, Here’s 3 Reasons Why

ethereum crypto price taps $9k
Ethereum price has surged in value over the past week, posting its largest gains in the last twenty-four hours. Several notable factors have contributed to this rise, which could have strong effects on the platform moving forward. DEFI IS REDEFINING THE PLATFORM Over the past year, decentralized finance (DeFi) has emerged as a major element of the blockchain space. DeFi includes any project that uses smart contracts to lend, hedge, or swap assets. Whereas there are many blockchain platforms capable of performing these functions, Ethereum has established a dominant position in the sector.. Presently more than USD $745 million is locked up in DeFi, almost all of it on the Ethereum network. This is more than double the number from one year ago, and although it declined in March, it is once again growing. There is no doubt that investors are taking notice, and understand that this has a strong potential to move Ethereum into the mainstream financial markets. Maker is by-far the most popular DeFi platform, which only adds to Ethereum’s strength. However, many more DeFi projects are emerging. Also, Chainlink is the most popular oracle network, which also operates on Ethereum and is becoming a crucial player in many DeFi projects. ETHEREUM FUTURES HAVE SPIKED As prices have recovered, so too have trading volumes. Most notably, Ethereum has seen a significant spike in futures trading over the past twenty-four hours. SkewAnalytics has just posted data on Twitter showing the close correlation between Ethereum’s present price gain and futures volume. Futures volumes doubled vs average of last two weeks pic.twitter.com/Miy1tzb9Iu — skew (@skewdotcom) April 7, 2020 OkEx is clearly leading the increase and was recently announced as the largest derivatives exchange by volume last month, indicating a strong interest for Ethereum trading in Asia. It is worth noting that big jumps in futures volume generally leads to volatility, and a price correction could rapidly occur if too many investors bet long on Ethereum’s price. SERENITY UPGRADE IS COMING UP In July the #2 cryptocurrency is slated to undergo its largest upgrade to-date. Ethereum 2.0, named “Serenity,” will transition the platform into a proof-of-stake consensus architecture. It will also play a key role in Ethereum’s scaling solution, thus enabling vastly more transaction capability. In February the development team held a Reddit AMA where they expressed great confidence in Serenity launching on time. Once active, Ethereum 2.0 is expected to radically transform the entire platform ecosystem and open the door to mass use on a global scale. It thus stands to reason that investors are taking advantage of the present price before what they expect will be a major jump in value. What do you think is the reason for the latest Ethereum price surge? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @skewdotcom @

Bitcoin Investment Vastly Higher Than Assumed, New Data Suggests

Bitcoin Crash Could've Been Predicted 3 Days Early, Here's How
The debate over Bitcoin’s market strength continues, yet one analyst has released data indicating that investment in the flagship cryptocurrency has been considerably more substantial than previously thought. If true, it indicates that Bitcoin’s price could soon rise dramatically. MILLIONS ADDED TO THE BITCOIN MARKET EACH DAY PlanB has made several observations recently, most notably regarding the remarkable correlation between Bitcoin’s stock-to-flow ratio and its price. Most recently he explains that for Bitcoin to have maintained a value of USD $7k since October 2017, $400 million per month has been invested. He has tweeted: To maintain $7000 since Oct 2017, #bitcoin must have had about $400M new cash inflow every month last 2.5 years! (30d x 24h x 6blocks x 12.5btc x $7k assuming all trading is zero sum game) After the halving, we only need $200M per month to keep $7k level. If $400M stays, then 🚀 pic.twitter.com/d6hYJqxIUr — PlanB (@100trillionUSD) April 6, 2020 To clarify his statement, miners add 1,800 new Bitcoins to the total supply every day, most of which are sold. If each Bitcoin is worth $7k, then just over $400 million per month of new investment has flowed into the market since October, 2017 just to keep the price from plummeting. With this fact in mind, after the block halving takes place an additional $200 million will be added every day to Bitcoin’s market value should investor interest remain unchanged. Notable, however, is the fact that a rapid increase in price would likely draw in new investors as well, causing the price to spike even higher. Such a large amount of new fiat moving into Bitcoin should have been more apparent. However, a number of factors could explain how it has gone unnoticed. For example, nobody knows the number of Bitcoins permanently frozen due to issues such as lost keys or wallet passwords. Also, the large amount of notoriously inaccurate exchange data could easily obfuscate Bitcoin’s true market cap. ENTIRE BLOCKCHAIN SPACE COULD SOON CHANGE A key takeaway from this observation is the fact that the impact of the reward halving will not be trivial. Removing 900 BTC per day from production will reshape the market dynamics that have governed Bitcoin’s value for the past four years. Likewise, the last major bull run saw massive gains in the altcoin market. Platforms such as Ethereum and Ripple became much more valuable, and emerged as legitimate challengers to Bitcoin’s hegemony. Much has changed over the last three years, and the next big wave of investment could radically alter the role these cryptocurrencies play in the overall space. There has recently been some concern over the lack of institutional investment in the crypto space. Nevertheless, given how much individual interest clearly exists, there is no question that the retail market remains strong. Importantly, much more investment in the value of existing Bitcoins is all but certain to soon take place. Such a move could transform Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from objects of speculation into tools for real-world use. What do you make of PlanB’s latest findings? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @100trillionUSD

Nintendo Switch Game Pulled Over Cryptojacking Concerns

Nintendo Switch Game Pulled Over Cryptojacking Concerns
Over the weekend rumors erupted that ‘Cooking Mama: Cookstar’ secretly ran cryptojacking malware while being played on the Nintendo Switch. Developers have denied the rumors, yet Nintendo has pulled the game from its eShop. GAME TAKEN DOWN HOURS AFTER RELEASE Concerns that ‘Cooking Mama’ secretly mines crypto began after a user posted the claim on Reddit. Others noted that playing the game causes the Switch to heat up and significantly drains the battery. The game had been removed from Nintendo’s online store only hours after release on March 26th. Mods on Reddit have since removed the post.  The game’s developer, 1st Playable, has denied the rumors, stating:  As the developers we can say with certainty there is no cryptocurrency or data collection or blockchain or anything else shady in the code. The Nintendo Switch is a very safe platform, with none of the data and privacy issues associated with some mobile and PC games. Interestingly, when ‘Cooking Mama: Cookstar’ was first announced, the press release noted that it would include blockchain technology. However, the developers have addressed this statement on Twitter, noting that they were not made aware of this claim: This is a release from Feb 2019, and we presume hypothetical like most releases about blockchain are. Blockchain was never brought up to us developers, and we were entertained to hear about in late 2019. Not happening anytime soon. — 1st Playable (@1stPlayable) April 5, 2020 Some analysts have now stepped forward asserting that the game does not contain cryptocurrency-related functions. SimonTime, a software engineer, has tweeted: I keep seeing rumours about there being a cryptominer in Cooking Mama: Cookstar, and due to its inclusion, it was pulled from the eShop.After some RE work, I can safely say there is no cryptominer/blockchain stuff anywhere within Cooking Mama: Cookstar's code. — SimonTime (@itssimontime) April 5, 2020 The ‘Cooking Mama’ franchise dates to 2006, and has included many titles. It has been made available on many Nintendo devices as well as iOS. Rumors of crypto malware notwithstanding, the game’s quick removal from the eShop indicates that there was clearly some problem with this most recent release. No doubt a better explanation as to why this happened would help restore the game’s reputation. CRYPTOJACKING BECOMING MORE COMMON Cryptocurrency mining malware is a growing concern. Its most commonly found on websites, where it secretly engages in background mining during user visits. More sophisticated versions install themselves on apps and in toolbars, and can mine indefinitely on victim’s machines. The appearance of secret miners on other devices, such as video game consoles, would thus not be surprising. Although extremely difficult to prevent, some crypto advocates have suggested that this problem can be fought by seeking to legitimize the practice. For example, restricted media content could be made available to individuals in return for voluntarily allowing limited mining to take place. The same could be applied to video games. For now, vigilance is the best means to fight cryptojacking, as the problem is unlikely to disappear any time soon. Do you think cryptojacking will threaten the gaming industry? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @itssimontime @1stplayable  

How Bitcoin has Maintained it’s Value Compared to Gold and Stocks?

How Bitcoin has Maintained it's Value Compared to Gold and Stocks?
Three weeks ago, as global commodities markets crashed, Bitcoin’s price tumbled more than 40% over the course of a few days. In the face of this collapse, critics derided the flagship cryptocurrency for its apparent inability to hold its value in a crisis. In response, analysts are now presenting data demonstrating that Bitcoin has, in fact, been a stronger safe-haven asset than stocks and gold. Bitcoin Has Held Up Well During The Current Crisis Analyst Willy Woo has posted a chart comparing the performance of the S&P 500, gold, and Bitcoin over the past five years. Whereas BTC’s remarkable rise in value during this time is well-known, this comparison reveals that the cryptocurrency’s recent drop in value is vastly less significant during this time frame. Woo has tweeted: Visualising what a 50% pull back in BTC price looks like in the bigger picture next to Gold and S&P500. This is Bitcoin weathering the biggest crisis we've seen perhaps since the Great Depression… the first big test of its safe haven properties. pic.twitter.com/zG0CzKs4N9 — Willy Woo (@woonomic) April 5, 2020 Critics may point to the fact that more recent investment in Bitcoin has been far less profitable. However, the fact remains that consistent investment in Bitcoin over the course of the past few years has been a smart move. More notably, Bitcoin’s recent price drops have not been any more painful than those of gold or stocks. In fact, the U.S. stock market has now returned to 2015 levels, whereas Bitcoin is exponentially more valuable. Writing on Medium, Sylvain Saurel compares Bitcoin to the stock market and gold over the past twelve months. In his analysis Bitcoin again proves to be by far the best investment choice. The stock market, as represented by the Dow Jones and S&P 500, has lost much of its value. Gold, the traditional safe haven, is up 25%. Bitcoin, on the other hand, is up 35% since this time last year and appears ready for a major breakout. Cryptocurrencies Are Risky Yet Technically Sound Bitcoin critics typically assert that the cryptocurrency has no sound backing, and gains its value only through investor interest. This claim is only true to an extent, as Bitcoin also acquires value through its utility. Blockchain architecture enables BTC to be sent anywhere in the world without centralized intermediaries. It can also be kept extremely secure via cryptography alone. It is these features that create use cases that have yet to be matched by traditional assets. Simply put, BTC and other blockchain platforms create a new asset class that is increasingly proving to hold utility in real-world applications. Even Bitcoin’s staunchest critics now recognize that distributed ledger technology works, and promises to make the world a much more secure and efficient place. It is thus not surprising that investment in BTC has proven to be profitable. It is also reasonable to assume that as blockchain adoption grows, so too will the value of the crypto space. What do you think about Bitcoin’s value retention especially in these times? Share your thoughts below.  Images via Shutterstock, Twitter: @woonomic

Will Bitcoin Price Hit $70,000 Post Halving?

Will Bitcoin Price Hit $70,000 Post Halving?
Many analysts asserted that 2020 would be a strong year for the Bitcoin market long before the current global economic crisis began. Most notably, the flagship cryptocurrency was expected to jump after May’s block reward halving. New data now suggest that these predictions are still on-track. Data And Public Sentiment Point To Major Bitcoin Gains Analyst PlanB continues to stand by the assertion that Bitcoin’s stock-to-flow ratio points to extremely high gains after the halving. This metric is determined by comparing present inventory to production and is a common tool used to gauge the value of hard commodities such as precious metals. PlanB has just tweeted: So #btc has been oscillating around S2F value of $7000 for 2.5 years now. Just like before 2016 halving ($300) and before 2012 halving ($6). Excited to see if we are going to add another zero after the halving in May🚀 pic.twitter.com/2pkCgOSAEN — PlanB (@100trillionUSD) April 4, 2020 Thus, although a prediction of USD $70k may seem outlandish, it would be perfectly in-line with previous gains for the flagship cryptocurrency. Also, there is no doubt that the capital exists to drive Bitcoin this high, as well as the public interest. In fact, government responses to the impending recession may make Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies even more attractive. A just-published article on HackerNoon asserts that the banks and legacy financial companies are all but certain to receive massive bailouts, just as they did in 2008. However, unlike twelve years ago, the infuriated public has the opportunity to put their assets into crypto, which will boost prices. Author Mark Helfman writes: Don’t underestimate the potential for this financial crisis to spur people into buying crypto and building businesses around crypto-based products, services, and processes. People might get so angry that they look for an “out” that doesn’t involve the banks, governments, and corporations. It is worth noting that Bitcoin was born out of frustration with central banks, and the U.S. government’s willingness to prop up incompetent and corrupt financial institutions. It is safe to assume that a repeat of this cronyism would only drive more investors into the crypto space. Real-World Adoption Will Push Exponential Growth Market activity notwithstanding, the development and adoption of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are rapidly taking place. Of particular note is the institutional embrace of blockchain technology by a wide range of industrial sectors. Also, whereas fiat remains strong for purchases, the world is increasingly turning to crypto for remissions and financial transfers. It is these real-world use cases that will play a key role in driving up Bitcoin’s value. In other words, the central bank-issued fiat must now compete with a new asset class that offers many clear advantages. When placed in this context, predictions of much higher Bitcoin prices are very realistic. Do you think Bitcoin price will surpass it’s all-time high this year? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. Images via Shutterstock, Twitter: @100trillionUSD

YouTuber Gets Banned by Western Union for Life, Bitcoin Fixes This

YouTuber Gets Banned by Western Union for Life, Bitcoin Fixes This
A business owner has posted a YouTube video asserting that Western Union inexplicably banned him for life as a result of his dealings in central Africa. Bitcoin fixes this. Ban Comes Without Explanation In the video Ben Taylor, a.k.a. Pleasant Green, discusses the establishment of a photography business in Africa that included charity work. He asserts that for over three years he used Western Union to send money to Liberia without incident. However, after attempting to wire funds elsewhere on the continent, the money transfer firm first blocked his transfer and then informed him that he had been banned for life. Taylor notes that he went to great lengths to prove to the money transfer business that he was not a scammer, and did not work with scammers. Nevertheless, he has been given no explanation as to why he is no longer permitted to use its services. The author states: I didn’t want to make this video, but I’ve got to give an explanation to my people who are gonna start to wonder why our business is drying up and why I can no longer employ them, or help them. So now I’m going to be looking into things like Bitcoin and mobile money to keep things going. In another video posted two weeks ago, Taylor discusses the beginning of the ordeal, which involved attempting to send money to an African woman who published a book in an attempt to raise money for a needed surgery. In this video, he plays a transcript of his bewildering attempts to get answers as to why the transfer was blocked. He also outlines a second equally frustrating encounter with MoneyGram. Bitcoin Is The Answer High fees and complex business practices have long been a hallmark of money transfer services. Citizens of underdeveloped nations are most burdened by these issues, as they most frequently rely on these companies for financial services. It is for this reason that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are growing rapidly in these regions. Blockchain architecture enables Bitcoin to be sent rapidly, and without the byzantine processes required by companies like Western Union. Bitcoin’s decentralized architecture makes it open for anyone to use, and transactions cannot be blocked or reversed. Most importantly, Bitcoin can be sent for a tiny fraction of the cost of legacy methods. Given their advantages, it is only a matter of time before blockchain assets such as Bitcoin achieve mass use. For people that rely on Western Union, that day cannot come soon enough. Is Bitcoin the de-facto payment and remittance solution? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!  Images via Bitcoinist Media Library, Pleasant Green

What Would it Cost to Build a Bitcoin Mining Rig Today?

What Would it Cost to Build a Bitcoin Mining Rig Today?
Poolin.com has put together an updated analysis of the present cost of putting together a profitable Bitcoin mining rig. This information provides a unique insight into the complexities of the ever-changing mining landscape. DETERMINING THE COST IS COMPLEX In the article, the mining pool notes that there a wide range of individual variables determine mining profitability. Poolin has created a mining profit estimator that breaks down these factors to better understand which rig is the best value. Example as shown: It is important to note that electricity costs vary widely from place-to-place, and are the most significant factor in long-term mining costs. Thus, more power hungry rigs that also produce a higher hash rate may be more suitable for areas with cheaper electricity, but less so where this cost would be higher. Critical to all mining operations is the “break even” factor, which the mining estimator seeks to determine. This is the value of cryptocurrency that must be produced for the cost of the rig to be paid for. For example, one featured Bitcoin mining rig costs USD $1,767 to build and operate and generates $4.56 in profit per day at current prices. Thus, it would need to run for 387 days to become profitable. Factored into this number are electricity costs. Also, however, is the fact that even after breaking even the rigs will consume electricity. Thus, they will only remain profitable as long as they produce enough crypto to cover this cost. Poolin refers to this as the “shutdown price.” Determining when a rig has crossed this threshold can be very tricky. BITCOIN MINING CAN STILL TURN A PROFIT BUT REQUIRES SKILL Much has been made of large pools taking over the mining space, notably with regards to Bitcoin. Of particular note is the fact that the most advanced mining rigs often become available to these enterprise operations months before they can be purchased by independent consumers. For example, critics have long accused Bitmain of using its most cutting edge equipment exclusively for its own mining farms and selling only the older rigs on the open market. Thus, successful Bitcoin and crypto mining requires a very close eye for detail. Efficiency must be a top priority, as every variable will play a role in the final outcome. This includes equipment costs, electricity costs, and choice of platform to mine. However, with proper planning, and access to the best information, profitability can be achieved. What do you think is the price to build a profitable bitcoin mining rig? Let us know in the comments below.  Images via Shutterstock, Poolin

Bitcoins Worth $300,000 Recovered by ‘Breaking Zip Encryption’

lost bitcoin recovered
A cryptographer has posted an article discussing how he cracked an encrypted zip file to recover a lost hoard of Bitcoin keys. This story underscores the need to keep keys safe, and always remember passwords. Bitcoin Private Keys Found By Cracking INFOZIP The author, Mike Stay, has a Ph.D. in computer science and an extensive background in cryptography dating to the 1990s. He discusses how he was contacted and hired to crack an encrypted zip file from a man that read a paper he had written on the subject almost twenty years ago. The file contained the private keys to USD $300k worth of Bitcoins purchased in 2016, yet the man had forgotten the password. He states: Back in January of 2016, he had bought around $10K or $15K of Bitcoin and put the keys in an encrypted zip file. Now they were worth upwards of $300K and he couldn’t remember the password. Luckily, he still had the original laptop and knew exactly when the encryption took place. Because InfoZip seeds its entropy using the timestamp, that promised to reduce the work enormously—”only” 10 quintillion—and made it quite feasible, a matter of a couple of months on a medium GPU farm. We made a contract and I got to work. Stay notes that he was able to re-learn his earlier skills, and with some help crack the zip file within a matter of days. It is important to note that at no time did Stay crack the code to the keys themselves, nor did he compromise any other element of the Bitcoin protocol. Rather, he merely found the password to an encrypted zip file which could have contained any information. Act Raises Security Concerns Experts agree that the encryption behind Bitcoin and most other top altcoins is extremely secure, and attempts to crack private keys using presently-available techniques would be futile. Nevertheless, there remains a risk of theft or loss if such keys are not stored properly. Unfortunately, all too often crypto investors store keys and passwords in unencrypted files, or they follow other lax procedures that put their coins at risk. Sometimes, as outlined in Stay’s story, they do not keep track of passwords. It is well known that almost all cryptocurrency theft and loss is due to user error. It is impossible to know how many Bitcoins are now irretrievably lost. By some estimates, it is as high as 25% of all present in existence. Perhaps the most speculated upon are the more than one million Bitcoins known to be owned by Satoshi Nakamoto. These have remained unmoved for more than ten years. Craig Wright’s claims notwithstanding, one commonly believed theory is that Satoshi, whoever he is, can no longer access them. Thus, it is crucially important to follow proper security guidelines when storing cryptocurrency. Passwords must be stored safely, and files encrypted using the latest techniques. Whereas there is no way to guarantee total security, improper personal handling is a very easy way to lose access to funds. What do you think about this lost and found Bitcoin story? Share your thoughts in the comments below. Image via Shutterstock

3 Major Developments That Will Change How You Use Bitcoin

3 Reasons Why Bitcoin Price Is Heading Towards $10k
For all of its revolutionary potential, Bitcoin remains a work in progress. Its long, and often contentious development has been the subject of immense debate among both supporters and critics. Several emerging steps along its march to completion will soon become game changers on the move toward mass adoption. SCALABILITY IS A PRIORITY Increasing network capacity is crucial for Bitcoin’s long-term success. Finding a workable scaling solution  has been by-far the most difficult and contentious challenge faced by Bitcoin advocates. The adoption of Segregated Witness (SegWit) enabled the creation of the Lightning Network (LN), which in theory solves the scaling problem. However, LN use has been anaemic since its launch. Apps and wallets that use the protocol are not user friendly, and it remains more of a novelty than a core function of the platform. This fact may soon change as the network grows. Presently, daily transaction levels are low enough for all to easily move on-chain without help from the LN. Bitcoin will begin to see problems once daily volume is roughly double what it is now, which is all but certain to happen. At that point fees and slowing confirmation times will make using the LN far more attractive. There are other scaling solutions in the works as well. Liquid, promoted by Blockstream, is growing rapidly. In fact, as Longhash recently pointed out, more Bitcoins are tied to Liquid than the LN at the time of writing: The Lightning Network is a much hyped improvement for Bitcoin. But recently, the amount of BTC held on the Liquid sidechain surpassed BTC held in public Lightning Network channels. Analysis: https://t.co/iIiSvyX19T @kyletorpey — LongHash (@longhashdata) March 26, 2020 BITCOIN PRIVACY FEATURES WILL BE EMBRACED Critics have long derided Bitcoin for lacking true privacy, as every transaction can be tracked on the chain. Many altcoins, such as Monero, Zcash, and Dash seek to solve this shortcoming through a variety of obfuscation features. Bitcoin developers have been hard at work on this issue for several years. One solution, known as bulletproofs, uses what are known as “zero knowledge proofs.” These enable senders and receivers to prove that they know the value of a transaction without revealing how. Thus, transactions can be sent and confirmed privately. Other ways to ensure private Bitcoin transactions are also under development. It remains too early to know which will become the standard, yet there is little doubt that the flagship cryptocurrency will soon enable fully confidential use. How this will tie in with future international regulations however, remains to be seen. CROSS CHAIN FUNCTIONALITY WILL OPEN NEW DOORS The ability to move blockchain assets across the various platforms has long been a major goal of crypto developers. Various incarnations of this ability have been worked on over the years, the most notable of which are Atomic Swaps. Perhaps the strongest demand is to create functionality between Bitcoin and Ethereum. In fact, Vitalik Buterin recently tweeted about this issue: We should put resources toward a proper (trustless, serverless, maximally Uniswap-like UX) ETH <-> BTC decentralized exchange. It's embarrassing that we still can't easily move between the two largest crypto ecosystems trustlessly. — vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) March 24, 2020 Among the most promising is the Nerve network, which is part of the Nuls ecosystem. The Nuls technical team has just released a whitepaper that outlines how Nerve will enable a degree of interoperability between Ethereum and Bitcoin. Cosmos and Polkadot are two other platforms also working on similar projects. The most important takeaway from these developments is the fact that Bitcoin is far from complete. Many changes will soon dramatically increase its functionality and potential for use on a mass scale. What do you think is Bitcoin’s most important development going forward? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @VitalikButerin @longhashdata

Why Bitcoin Crossing the 4-Hour 200MA is Huge News

bitcoin btc
The past few days have been positive for Bitcoin, as the flagship cryptocurrency continues to recover from the major correction last month. There is no shortage of analysis supporting further price gains, yet one critical piece of data stands out as very positive. BITCOIN POISED TO CROSS A MAJOR THRESHOLD Analysts Pierre has observed that Bitcoin is on the verge of crossing the 4-hour 200 day moving average. This price action may sound overly technical, yet it is a crucial link in better understanding Bitcoin’s market strength. Pierre has tweeted: One hour to go for bulls to reclaim H4 200 EMA, still running the show here. FYI last time we reclaimed it was on Jan 5th, and only lost it on Feb 25th Would be an encouraging sign for bulls, but still a lot of fight to win this area. I guess another crazy day for us.#Bitcoin https://t.co/kHlnSAo6AP pic.twitter.com/7JgT2Zsxap — Pierre 🌐 (@pierre_crypt0) April 3, 2020 Bitcoin last moved above the 4- hour 200 moving average on January 5th, after which its value jumped 27%. In fact, it was during this period that Bitcoin broke USD $10k for the first time in months. Thus, crossing this line is yet another indicator that investors are feeling comfortable about the price moving forward. The same phenomenon has happened in years past. For example, Bitcoin’s notable increase that began last April was also preceded by crossing the 4-hour 200MA. Also, there are many incarnations of the moving average, all of which have a solid track record of predicting price gains.  THE PRICE IS MOVING UP, BUT CAN IT HOLD? Yesterday, Bitcoin broke $7k for the first time since the March crash, yet quickly corrected as profit taking moved in. Now that the price is inching back up, crypto advocates appear optimistic moving into the weekend. It is worth noting that whereas another major correction appears unlikely, price volatility remains all but certain. The crypto market may be recovering, yet the global economy continues to shrink. Most experts now predict a recession has begun that could last months, if not years. How such a scenario could impact the blockchain space is uncertain. Unemployment numbers are the most troubling, as workers need disposable income in order to purchase Bitcoin. For now the sell off for quick cash seems to have abated, yet it could happen again should the work stoppages and furloughs continue. The good news is that a series of factors are coming together that all indicate a healthy market recovery. Much has been made of Bitcoin’s impending block halving, which is expected to cause a price surge. Also, the devaluation of fiat currencies by central banks should draw investors to crypto as well. In fact, all other issues notwithstanding, this time of year tends to see prices move up. Are you excited about Bitcoin crossing above the 4-hour 200MA line? Add your thoughts in the comments below! Images via Shutterstock, @pierre_crypt0

3 Reasons Why the Crypto Market is Flashing Green Today

3 Reasons Why crypto Markets Have Crashed Today
Prices across the crypto space are moving into positive territory. Bitcoin is up five percent over the past twenty four hours and many alt coins are breaking weekly highs. Several factors are at play which are pushing up these values. FEAR OF FIAT INFLATION IS PUSHING PEOPLE INTO CRYPTO Last week, politicians across the globe went to great lengths to promise massive bailouts and stimulus programs designed to help alleviate the pain of increasing unemployment, and economic recession. The public felt relief, yet economists quickly pounced. Experts asserted that these moves were all but certain to cause massive inflation and much more financial pain down the road. For days now the criticism of these bailouts has built. Most notably, analysts have made clear that the decision by the U.S. Federal Reserve to print USD $2 Trillion will significantly devalue the Dollar. Devalue of the dollar coming? https://t.co/kB9GVgmjug — Winston (The Wolf) Wolfe (@MrWWolfe) April 1, 2020 Not surprisingly, a greater number of investors are moving their assets into cryptocurrencies, which have a fixed supply and cannot be manipulated by a central bank. This activity reinforces the notion that the public increasingly trusts Bitcoin and alt coins to hold their value during times of economic stress. PEOPLE ARE LOOKING FOR CRYPTO DEALS In mid-March crypto investors liquidated millions of dollars worth of their holdings in a scramble to acquire quick cash. Most feared the work stoppages related to the growing economic meltdown. It has now become obvious that this sell-off created deals aplenty across the blockchain space. With Bitcoin below $7k for the first time in months, the temptation to buy is very strong. The same can be said of many altcoins, some of which have not been this low in over a year. PLATFORM FUNDAMENTALS REMAIN STRONG Regarding Bitcoin, there has never been much doubt that 2020 would be a strong year. Before the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, the crypto market recovery was in full swing. Importantly, the block reward halving promised to drive prices much higher. These factors have not changed, and optimism is growing that the flagship cryptocurrency may end the year on a very strong note. In fact, many cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin included, are experiencing very solid network strength. For example, the growth of decentralised finance (DeFi) is pushing Ethereum activity to new levels. Even lesser alts such as Chainlink, VeChain, and Stellar are experiencing notable increases in real world application. It thus stands to reason that investors will take notice. The overall crypto market will no doubt remain volatile in the days ahead. Nevertheless, today’s market demonstrates that on a core level it remains healthy Why do you think the crypto market has turned bullish today? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @MrWWolfe 

XRP Falls Behind Bitcoin SV, Dogecoin in Active Addresses

XRP falls behind Bitcoin SV, Dogecoin
Evidence suggesting a change in investor behavior continues to grow as XRP and a handful of other projects see serious declines in crypto wallet addresses over the past 4 weeks.  XRP Investors Hodling or Losing Interest? Analyst CryptoRand has posted a chart showing the number of dynamic addresses has decreased among many major platforms over the past month. According to Crypto Differ figures, XRP is by far the worst affected. Interesting decrease on $XRP dynamic addresses. Giving up or holding for Lambo? pic.twitter.com/SsjcoXYbMa — Crypto Rand (@crypto_rand) March 31, 2020 As noted in the Tweet, XRP dynamic addresses have allegedly fallen by 29,208 over the last month. This puts the project behind other less prominent competitors such as Bitcoin SV (BSV), Dogecoin (DOGE), and Decred (DCR). However, this number may not be entirely accurate, as it is compared against February which saw several major temporary spikes. This three month chart of XRP addresses from Coin Metrics perhaps offers a little more clarity. Thus, when looking at a longer time frame, the number of XRP addresses has remained relatively stable, although it’s still far lower than other projects in the top 10. A key takeaway from the overall data is the fact that investors are moving their coins from exchanges into personal wallets. There can be no question that interest in long-term cold storage is growing as the global economy declines. This fact further reinforces the argument that the public views cryptocurrency as a legitimate financial safe haven. This collective move will likely put upward pressure on price, as the supply of coins for trading declines. It could also prompt more use of Bitcoin and other blockchain assets for real world purchases. As the market recovers the number of dynamic addresses across the crypto space will once again move up. This chart clearly shows Bitcoin’s hegemony in the blockchain space, as its number of active addresses dwarfs all others. Its number has however, also marginally declined over the past few weeks. ADDRESS ANOMALIES DEMONSTRATE NETWORK GROWTH As shown in the chart, some crypto platforms have seen a spike in dynamic addresses. Most notably, Ethereum saw a twenty-two percent increase. This fact reflects the growing use of the Ethereum blockchain, most notably in decentralized finance (DeFi). In fact, DeFi has come to dominate the Ethereum network over the past few weeks. Stellar Lumens has also seen a major spike in network usage over the past few weeks, reflected by the large number of new addresses. The eventual mass adoption of cryptocurrency will see value increasingly reflected by network usage. In other words, all cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin included, must prove their utility in order to survive long-term. The examination of alternate data can thus give a good insight into overall platform potential. Do you think XRP’s drop in active addresses is a sign of hodling or lack of interest? Add your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock, Twitter @crypto_rand, Chart by CoinMetrics