Could Ripple, Bitcoin and Ethereum return to previous high?

CRYPTOCURRENCIES such as Bitcoin, Ripple and Ethereum are all in the green today after a turbulent start to the year. But could all three top tokens return to their previous record highs? Here are the latest price predictions.

Bitcoin had a good weekend after a poor start to 2018, dropping to under $6,000 at the start of February.

As of Marsh 17, CryptoCoinHubs  highlights a peak up to $8,150  at the time of writing.

Ethereum is up at $600  with Ripple  at $0,66. While LiteCoin , a Litecoin is currently worth $160

The rises come after a damaging month for cryptocurrencies as a whole. After peaking at about $834billion on January 7, the market plunged an eye-watering 66 percent, wiping out some $553billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

But with Bitcoin, Ripple and Ethereum all back in the green today, many crypto experts are confident that the market can reach new heights this year.

Could Ripple, Bitcoin and Ethereum return to previous high?

Thomas Glucksmann of GateCoin told CNBC: “Increasing regulatory recognition of cryptocurrency exchanges, the entrance of institutional capital and major technology developments will contribute to the market’s rebound and push cryptocurrency prices to all new highs this year.”

He added bitcoin, the biggest and best-known cryptocurrency, could be “pushing $50,000 by December”.

Jamie Burke, CEO at Outlier Ventures, is bullish about the cryptocurrency market, insisting it has the potential to reach $1trillion.

He told CNBC: “We believe after February the market will likely go on a bull run comparative if not greater than last year potentially reaching the trillion-dollar mark before a proper crypto winter sets in where the market becomes more focused on proper market fundamentals.”

And Panos Mourdoukoutas, writing for Forbes, suggested that after “ being in a deep correction for a few weeks, Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin have been coming back nicely over the last week, gaining 19.87%, 10.48%, 30.57%, and 53.90% respectively”.

He added the crypto turnaround after the recent crash comes as equity markets rebounded from the sell-off early in the month.

And he also wrote the cryptocurrency “technicals” remain strong, saying “83 cryptocurrencies [are] advancing and only 17 declining among the top 100 listed currencies.”

Dennis de Jong, managing director of UFX, says he believes cryptocurrencies remain strong and will not plummet for good in 2018.

He told Express.co.uk: “It may not capture the headlines like the volatility of bitcoin has in recent months, but there have been considerable advances in the underlying technology of the blockchain.

“Many industries are already live with, or in the process of testing, blockchain use cases that have potentially huge knock-ons for data management and security advancements.

“The relationship between crypto usage and investment in the space underpins bitcoin’s value to an extent, and for this reason I can’t see it going anywhere soon.”

But as central banks attempt to kickstart regulation – Citibank India being the latest financial authority this week to ban cryptocurrency payments on debit or credit card – some investors believe the market slump could be an indicator of an overall crash in all financial markets.

Bleakley Financial Group CIO Peter Boockvar said: “If bitcoin resumes its decline here, I think that equity investors should pay attention.”

Ripple Could Be The Next Bitcoin

Bitcoin has made some investors very rich. Those who purchased the digital currency back in the old days when it was trading for a few dollars. And it could make more investors rich provided that it continues to rise to new highs.

But that’s unlikely, as large percentage gains are hard to come by at these price levels—north of $10,000.

Coin Price* Market Cap
Bitcoin (BTC) $10,751.90 $181,767,449,663
Ethereum (ETH) $788.19 77,266,069,902
Ripple (XRP) $0.91 35,513,987,185
*As of Wednesday, 11 a.m.

Still, there’s Ripple, trading below a $1. And there are experts who believe that it could be the next Bitcoin, one day.

Craig Cole of CryptoMaps is one of those experts.”Ripple just might be the catalyst in making cryptocurrency more mainstream,” says Cole.

Its faster transaction speeds and lower fees make it easier for financial systems to embrace the virtual currency, which is partly why Ripple’s value has increased dramatically just this year. Ripple is helping financial institutions save money and it is only expected to become even more prevalent in payment flows. The virtual currency is certainly on the rise and has the potential to be the first token to truly disrupt an industry, and if it does, expect XRP to reach Bitcoin-like levels of ubiquity in the near future.

John-Paul McCaffrey, Associate Director ITRC, Long Island University, agrees. “Although currently there isn’t a platform to exchange fiat currency for Ripple (XRP) this may change sooner than you think,” says McCaffrey. “There is speculation that Coinbase will be adding this to their list of cryptocurrencies they have available for fiat exchange. Providing easy liquidity through Coinbase alone will attract new interest in XRP.”

That will take some time says Roman Guelfi-GibbsCEO, Lead Systems Designer for Pinnacle Brilliance Systems Inc.

Ripple certainly has the potential to move up a notch in 2018, but I think it will be more likely in 2019. As the market observes more projects being coded in other algorithms such as XRP, ETH will likely take a backseat to the next big coin/token. It will take some time for the markets to digest this, so I am projecting 2019 to be the likely time for it to take place. Of course, with crypto, anything can happen, so watch closely.

Not everyone is that enthusiastic about the prospects of Ripple catching up with Bitcoin. Like Shidan Gouran, president of Global Block Chain Technologies.

Ripple is unlikely to go up by one or two notches in the cryptocurrency world in 2018, and this is the case for three reasons. The first reason is the sheer dollar volume that separates each of the three currencies in the top positions, in terms of their market cap. Bitcoin is at over $191 billion, Ethereum is at over $84 billion, and Ripple is at over $35 billion. To displace Ethereum would require a deficit of about $49 billion to be closed (which is more than double Iceland’s entire national GDP). The second reason is that the use cases for Ripple are mostly for the trade of assets, not for day-to-day spending. As consumer awareness of cryptocurrencies will rise significantly in 2018 and beyond, the interest of the masses will be on cryptocurrencies that can be used as currencies, not just for investment transactions. Finally, the third reason is that because Ripple cannot be bought with fiat currencies, one must purchase existing cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum to purchase XRP. This goes on to feed demand for Bitcoin and Ethereum, and will only solidify their positions as the top two cryptocurrencies on the market.

Actually, the last point is no longer true. Recently, the French exchange bitit.io added Ripple and Litecoin to its coin offerings. This means that Ripple can now be purchased directly. At least that’s what the site claims, though I couldn’t verify how easy the process is and what are the relevant fees.

Still, Ripple investors have to wait for quite some time before they replicate the success of early Bitcoin investors, provided that it gains traction by users—and that big governments, big banks or hackers do not crush cryptocurrencies across the board.

[Ed. note: Investing in cryptocoins or tokens is highly speculative and the market is largely unregulated. Anyone considering it should be prepared to lose their entire investment. Disclosure: I don’t own any Bitcoin.]

Vladivostok as Russia’s New ”Crypto Hub”

Bankers and government officials have discussed the possible creation of a crypto valley on Russia’s Pacific coast. Representatives of the Central Bank and the executive power in Moscow have taken part in the consultations initiated by the Fund for Development of the Far East. The city of Vladivostok, where local authorities want to allow cryptocurrency trade, may become a crypto hub.  

Test Site for Crypto Regulations

The Fund for Development of the Far East has proposed the creation of a crypto valley, centered on the Russian city of Vladivostok, its general director Alexei Chekunov told RNS. The FDFE, along with the digital platform “Voshod” [sunrise], are currently discussing the idea with representatives of the Central Bank of Russia and government officials. The necessary regulatory framework and the risks associated with the project are under examination, as well.

“From around $2 billion dollars raised though crypto assets offerings, Russian projects account for about 5%, or approximately $100 million. It is obvious that the potential of our country in this new and perspective field has not been fully realized”, Chekunov said. He noted that the FDFE had been tasked by President Putin to explore the possibility of setting up a financial center in Vladivostok. “We have proposed to combine these two initiatives”, he added.

Chekunov called the experiment a “Russian Crypto Valley” and described it as a “test site for technical and regulatory approaches”. This week a local representative of the Russian Association of Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain told lawmakers in the Duma that Crimea’s jurisdiction can also be used to test the crypto “phenomenon”. A couple of days ago the head of the Russian republic of Udmurtia urged deputies to quickly adopt regulations and offered its territory for pilot projects. Other regions want to set up large mining facilities.

FDFE has also announced intentions to turn Vladivostok into Russia’s first crypto hub, taking advantage of the special economic ecosphere in its Free Port. The Deputy Finance Minister of Russia recently said that authorities in the administrative center of Primorsky Krai were interested in hosting cryptocurrency trade. The nearby Russky Island has been mentioned as a zone of free crypto interactions.

“At the moment we are focused on finalizing the regulatory rules and analyzing the possible risks. The Voshod platform is ready to start operations with crypto assets. We are working with all interested parties to begin trading after the adoption of the legal framework in mid-2018”, FDFE director Alexei Chekunov said. The Fund for Development of the Far East was created by Vnesheconombank, the government owned Russian development bank.

Do you think Moscow authorities will create a crypto valley in the Far East to experiment with crypto technologies and regulations? Tell us in the comments section below.

Belarus Wants to Run a Global Crypto Hub

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko, who’s labored for years under the title of Europe’s last dictator, is making a bid for a shiny new image as the continent’s freewheeling cryptocurrency king.

 Lukashenko, who’s ruled the former communist republic that’s wedged between Poland and Russia since 1994, signed a decree on Friday offering tax breaks and legal incentives for dealing in digital currencies in an effort to turn Belarus into an international tech haven.
 “Belarus will become the first government in the world that opens wide opportunities for the use of blockchain technology,” Lukashenko said in a statement in his website. “We have every chance of becoming a regional center in this area.”
 The decree legalizes business based on blockchain — the technology underlying cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin — and all digital “tokens,” as Belarus seeks to become a global crypto coin hub for raising funds via so-called initial coin offerings, or ICOs. Revenue and profit from all operations using digital tokens will be exempt from taxes until 2023, while there’ll be measures to simplify the flow of venture capital between Belarus and other countries, according to a summary of the decree published by Viktor Prokopenya, one of the businessmen lobbying for the legislation

Belarus is seeking to capitalize on a thriving tech industry that’s grown up there in recent years as young programmers have created products that appeal far beyond the borders of the former Soviet republic. The phone messaging application Viber was developed in Belarus as were the NYSE-listed offshore programming company EPAM Systems Inc. and the popular online gaming service World of Tanks, which made founder Victor Kislyi the country’s first billionaire.

Sandbox Haven

Even as Alphabet Inc., owner of Google, and Facebook Inc. snapped up Belarus-made startups, the country’s restrictive business environment made it all but impossible for venture capital to flow freely into promising ideas. Lukashenko’s new law may change that.

Belarus plans to cloak its repressive reputation with a “sandbox” — the creation of a legal tech enclave where companies working with digital currencies will pay no taxes and rely on some elements of English law in commercial matters, a radical innovation for a country whose security service is still called the KGB.

The sandbox would be set up within the so-called Hi-Tech Park, which the authorities opened in 2005 near the capital, Minsk, to try to spur innovation. Today, most of the park’s  residents are offshore software companies taking advantage of cheap and skilled local programmers as well as reduced taxes to serve foreign clients.

’Tech Nation’

Lukashenko said this month that his goal in signing the decree is to make Belarus a “tech nation.” The country’s major technology companies lobbied for the legal changes, which also gained support among government officials and in the central bank.

The novelty of the proposed law is that Belarus would provide legal clarity for dealing in digital currencies which is yet unseen in other countries, said Denis Aleinikov, whose law firm Aleinikov and Partners helped to draft the decree. It also establishes a direct legal link between issuers of tokens and their obligations toward the holders.

To protect against fraudsters, the regulation would set capital requirements for operators of cryptocurrency exchanges. It would also introduce “smart contracts” in Belarus — self-executable computer-coded applications that serve as an alternative to traditional paper agreements.

“The decree has been written exactly the way our tech community wanted it,” Vsevolod Yanchevsky, head of Hi-Tech Park, said in an interview in Minsk. “Belarus will be one of the best jurisdictions in the world for cryptocurrencies and blockchain.”

CRYPTOCURRENCY : From Centralization to Decentralization

CRYPTOCURRENCY

From Centralization to Decentralization

The major drawback of the traditional fiat currency payment system is high transaction fees with a long settlement period, which has led people to alternative currencies that allow for shorter peer-to-peer (P2P) processing time without intermediaries, resulting in a thriving market for digital currencies that have lower settlement risk. Prior to the creation of cryptocurrencies, there were many other types of digital currencies. The most common example is a digital currency created by an institution and transacted on a platform. Such currencies can be loyalty points created by companies or digital coins created by Internet-based platforms. The institutions or legal entities control the creation, transaction, bookkeeping, and verification of the digital currencies. In other words, these platform-based digital currencies are centralized. A notable example is the loyalty points of e-commerce companies like Rakuten and iHerb, which function like cash on the platform. Q-coin, introduced by the Chinese social platform Tencent, can be bought using the Renminbi and can be used to buy services at Tencent. World of Warcraft Gold is a game token that can only be earned through completing in-game activities and cannot be bought or exchanged into fiat currencies .

These centralized digital currencies are transacted within a specific platform and are designed to support the business of the issuing institutions. It is difficult to use them as a substitute for fiat money because these centralized digital currencies are not legal tender. Therefore, decentralized digital currencies seem a potential replacement for fiat money as no central authority is needed to verify the transactions. However, there are still many obstacles to overcome without the use of an intermediary or central authority. One main obstacle is the double-spending problem: It is possible to spend the same digital coin more than once. This problem has remained unsolved for a long time, discouraging the prevalence of decentralized coins. To ensure every transaction is accurately reflected in the account balance for digital currencies to prevent double spending, there is a need for a trusted ledger without a central authority.

The first cryptocurrency, eCash, was a centralized system owned by DigiCash, Inc. and later eCash Technologies. Although it was phased out in the late 1990s, the cryptographic protocols it employed avoided double spending. A blind signature was used to protect the privacy of users and served as a good inspiration for subsequent development. Shortly after the discovery of cryptography protocols, digital gold currency became popular, among which the most used was e-Gold. It was the first successful online micropayment system and led to many innovations, making transactions more accessible and more secure. However, the failure to address compliance issues finally resulted in its liquidation in 2008, despite an annual transaction volume of over US$2 billion .

The global financial crisis in 2008, coupled with a lack of confidence in the financial system, provoked considerable interest in cryptocurrency. A ground-breaking white paper by Satoshi Nakamoto was circulated online in 2008. In the paper, this pseudonymous person, or persons, introduced a digital currency that is now widely known as bitcoin. Bitcoin uses blockchain as the public ledger for all transactions and a scheme called PoW to avoid the need for a trusted authority or central server to timestamp transactions . Because blockchain is an open and distributed ledger that records all transactions in a verifiable and permanent way, it solves the double-spending problem.

Bitcoin and “bitcoin”

The cryptocurrency, denoted by bitcoin or BTC, can be accepted as a payment for goods and services or bought either from other people or directly from exchanges/vending machines. These bitcoins can be transacted via software, apps, or various online platforms that provide wallets. Another way to obtain bitcoin is through mining.

The Bitcoin system runs on a P2P network, and transactions happen directly between users with no intermediary. Bitcoin decentralizes the responsibilities of verifying the validity of transactions to the entire network. Transactions are recorded in the public ledger called blockchain and are verified by network nodes, which could be any individual using a computer system with Bitcoin software installed. Once users have made a transfer, the transaction will be broadcast between users and confirmed by the network. Upon verification, it will be recorded in the blockchain, and then the transfer is completed. This record-keeping process is referred to as mining, and people offering the computing power to do so are called miners. Bitcoins are created as an incentive for solving the cryptography puzzle using transaction data; thus, successful miners are rewarded with the newly created bitcoins, on top of transaction fees.

Each transaction contains inputs and outputs. An input has the reference to the output from the previous transaction, and the output of a transaction holds the receiving address and the corresponding amount . In general, in a transaction, a certain number of bitcoins is sent from a bitcoin wallet to a specific address, if there is a sufficient bitcoin balance in the wallet from previous transactions. Transactions are not encrypted and can be viewed in the blockchain with corresponding bitcoin addresses, but the identity of the sender or receiver remains anonymous. Typically, bitcoin wallets have a private key or seed that is used to sign transactions. This secured piece of data provides a mathematical proof that the coins in the transaction come from the owner of the wallet. With the private key and the signature, the account can only be accessed by the owner, and transactions cannot be altered by someone else.

Mining is also the process of adding newly verified transaction records to Bitcoin’s public ledger. The records are grouped and stored in blocks. Each block contains a timestamp and a link to a previous block so that the blocks are chained together, thus the name blockchain. The blocks are mined in sequence, and once recorded, the data cannot be altered retroactively. A complete record of transactions can be found on the main chain. Each block on the chain is linked to the previous one and can be traced all the way back to the very first block, which is called the genesis block. However, there are also blocks that are not part of the main chain, called detached or orphanedblocks. They can occur when more than one miner produces blocks at similar times, or they can be caused by attackers’ attempt to reverse transactions. When separate blocks are validated concurrently, the algorithm will help maintain the main chain by selecting the block with the highest value.

There are several systems by which miners can earn rewards through the mining process. Bitcoin uses the Hashcash PoW system and the SHA-256 hashing algorithm. Under the PoW system, rewards are given according to the number of blocks that are mined successfully. Therefore, mining is quite competitive; the miner who first solves a given puzzle or gets the highest value will take all the newly created bitcoins, and the other miners will receive nothing. Rewards thus encourage miners to take an active part in mining data blocks. In addition, mining usually involves a large amount of computation and can be quite energy consuming.

Another commonly seen system is proof-of-stake (PoS). Unlike PoW, no additional work is required under the PoS scheme because investors are rewarded based on the number of coins they hold. For example, a user holding 1% of the currency has a probability of mining 1% of that currency’s PoS blocks . In general, this system does not require a large amount of work for the computation. It provides for higher currency security and is usually used in combination with other systems, as in the case of Peercoin, the first cryptocurrency launched using PoS.

Because the supply of bitcoins is limited to 21 million, the bitcoins awarded to a miner for successfully adding a block will be halved every 210,000 blocks (approximately every four years), according to the Bitcoin protocol. When Bitcoin was first run in 2009, the reward amounted to 50 newly created bitcoins per block added to the blockchain, but the reward has been halved twice to 12.5 as of July 9, 2016. The supply of bitcoins on the network is 16.907 million as of March 6, 2018, with a total circulating supply market capitalization of US$ 159.1 billion.3

Features of Bitcoin

Decentralized. Similar to conventional currencies that are traded digitally, bitcoin can also be used to buy things electronically. Unlike any fiat money or platform-based digital currencies, however, bitcoin is decentralized. In other words, there is no single group or institution that controls the Bitcoin network. Its supply is governed by an algorithm, and anyone can have access to it via the Internet.

Flexible. Bitcoin wallets or addresses can be easily set up online without any fees or regulations. Furthermore, transactions are not location specific, so bitcoins can be transferred among different countries seamlessly.

Transparent. Every transaction will be broadcast to the entire network. Mining nodes or miners will validate the transactions, record them in the block they are creating, and broadcast the completed block to other nodes. Records of all transactions are stored in the blockchain, which is open and distributed, so every miner has a copy and can verify them.

Fast. Transactions are broadcast within a few seconds, and it takes about 10 minutes for the transaction to be verified by miners. Thus, one can transfer bitcoins anywhere in the world, and the transactions will usually be completed minutes later.

Low transaction fees. No transaction fee is required to make a transfer historically, but the owner can opt to pay extra to facilitate a faster transaction. Currently, low priority for mining transactions (a function of input age and size) is mostly used as an indicator for spam transactions, and almost all miners expect every transaction to include a fee. Miners historically have been incentivized mainly by newly created coins, but that is changing. As the number of bitcoins in circulation nears its limit, transaction fees will eventually be the incentive for miners to carry out the costly verification process.

Altcoin Market

Bitcoin is open source and the source code is available on GitHub.4 Therefore, coders around the world have been enlightened by the invention of Bitcoin and have created hundreds of cryptocurrencies, which are referred to as alternative cryptocurrencies, or altcoins. Bitcoin is not perfect. Every new purpose or pain point is an incentive to invent new coins. Coins are invented to address specific issues such as high computation cost of PoW, to increase the number of transactions per second, to increase the block size, to ensure that the ledger is not as transparent, to accommodate more efficient use of smart contracts, and so on. Moreover, to pay for development and launch expenses, developers can raise funds for the project even before the cryptocurrency is launched. In particular, initial coin offerings (ICOs), initial crypto-token offerings, and initial token sales are similar approaches to raising funding to develop new crypto-tokens and cryptocurrencies. ICOs allow people to invest in a project by buying part of its cryptocurrency tokens or prelaunched ERC20-compliant tokens residing on the Ethereum network in advance, typically based on a white paper or other documents on the project for investors to evaluate.

As of October 6, 2017, 869 cryptocurrencies and 269 crypto-tokens were launched and traded,5with a total market capitalization of over US$148.4 billion. Different from fiat money, cryptocurrencies have a circulating supply, total supply, and maximum supply. Maximum supply refers to the best approximation of the maximum amount of coins that will ever be created in the lifetime of the cryptocurrency, and total supply is the total number of coins existing at the present moment. However, some coins will have been burned, locked, or reserved or cannot be traded on the public market, so the circulating supply is computed by deducting those coins from the total supply. When determining the market capitalization, circulating supply is used because it denotes the amount of coins circulating in the market and accessible to the public.

Based on cryptocurrency market value as of June 27, 2017, Bitcoin dominated the market with more than half of the total market value and the highest price. Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin also have large market capitalizations of more than US$1 billion. In addition, the supply of different coins varies substantially due to the unique characteristics of each coin, and some coins are not mined, suggesting a fixed amount of supply. The price of the coins ranges from US$0.002 to well over US$1,000.

In general, some altcoins are very similar to bitcoins, whereas others are created by adopting very different methods or ideas. Market capitalization, different categories of altcoins, .

Appcoins, such as MaidSafeCoin, function like digital shares in a decentralized autonomous organization and are sold in token sales for a portion of future profits. Most altcoins are direct copies of Bitcoin, with some minor changes in parameters such as block-generating time and the maximum limit of coin supply. However, many altcoins have adopted other innovative changes. Among the widely accepted altcoins, Ethereum is the one with the most innovative ideas and widely followed besides Bitcoin. The value token of the Ethereum blockchain is called ether and denoted by XRP. It provides a decentralized Turing-complete virtual machine that features smart contract functionality, as do four other altcoins that have launched based on Ethereum: Ethereum Classic, Golem, Augur, and Gnosis. NEM falls under the third category in  (i.e., coins coded in a different programing language): It is operated using JAVA programming, as is Nxt. Stellar Lumens and Factom are excluded because they are based on Ripple and Bitcoin protocols, respectively.

To conclude, many cryptocurrencies other than bitcoin are traded actively with a wide assortment of features for investors to invest in. The complet coins list with over 1300 cryptocurrency , tokens and altcoins on https://cryptocoinhubs.com

Cryptocurrency Regulation in 2018

If 2017 was the year of the ICO, it seems as if 2018 is destined to become the year of regulatory reckoning. Things have already begun to heat up as countries around the world grapple with cryptocurrencies and try to determine how they are going to treat them. Some are welcoming, others are cautious. And some countries are downright antagonistic. Here is a brief overview of how 15 countries/unions from various regions are treating cryptocurrency regulations.

United States

The United States, at the time of this writing, has no coherent direction on its cryptocurrency regulation other than that there will be some soon. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has warned investors of cryptocurrency investing risks, halted several ICOs and hintedat the need for greater cryptocurrency regulation.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) became the first U.S. regulator to allowfor cryptocurrency derivatives to trade publicly, then organized meetings to talk about possibly changing the rules for cryptocurrency derivatives clearing (one of the meetings was postponed due to the federal government shutdown).

Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin has indicated a preference for minted fiat currency over cryptocurrency. Speaking on January 12, 2018, at the Economic Club in Washington, D.C., Secretary Mnuchin warned those in attendance that he and other regulators were looking into the possibility that cryptocurrency could be used in money-laundering activities. The secretary then announced to the group that the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) had formed a working group to explore the cryptocurrency marketplace and that he hoped to work with the G20 to prevent bitcoin from becoming a digital equivalent of a “Swiss bank account.”

Defending his stance to World Economic Forum attendees on January 25, 2018, Mnuchin explained that his number one focus on cryptocurrency was “to make sure that they’re not used for illicit activities.”

On January 26, 2018, U.S. Treasury Deputy Director Sigal Mandelker echoed the secretary’s sentiments after a visit to China, South Korea and Japan. At a press conference in Tokyo, she applauded the three Asian countries for keeping tabs on cryptocurrency trading, stating, “We feel very strongly that we need to have this kind of regulation all over the world.”

It should be noted that non-U.S. investors may have concerns over clearing licensing hurdles put up individually by the states. If the U.S. treats cryptocurrencies as currency, it seems more likely that the actions by the federal government and federal regulatory agencies would preempt states’ licensing. However, if treated as “securities” (the SEC has not completely cleared the issue up), cryptocurrencies, especially ICOs, would have to clear “blue sky laws” on a state-by-state basis.

Canada

The Financial Consumer Agency in Canada does not consider cryptocurrencies to be “legal tender,” excluding all but Canadian bank notes and coins from that definition. The True North, however, is not all harsh on its cryptocurrency regulatory stances. In fact, it appears to be the most transparent country in this list when it comes to understanding laws surrounding the digital currency industry (aside from Switzerland, which wants to be “THE crypto-nation”).

After weeks of hearings, which included testimony from experts like Andreas Antonopoulos, the Canadian Parliament approved Bill C-31 on June 19, 2014, the world’s first national law on digital currencies. The Canadian government has been communicative in its regulatory stances on cryptocurrency ever since: the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) sent out a regulatory notice on August 24, 2017, confirming “the potential applicability of Canadian securities laws to cryptocurrencies and related trading and marketplace operations and to provide market participants with guidance on analyzing these requirements.” If you want a clear and concise interpretation of this notice, check out this article.

More recently, the head of the Central Bank of Canada, Stephen Poloz, was quoted as saying on January 25, 2018, that  “I object to the term cryptocurrencies because they are crypto but they aren’t currencies … they aren’t assets for the most part … I suppose they are securities technically … There is no intrinsic value for something like bitcoin so it’s not really an asset one can analyze. It’s just essentially speculative or gambling.” It should be noted that as part of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), Canada joined an association-wide “cautionary directive” on the risks of cryptocurrencies, with all representatives from every province in the country believing there is a “high risk of fraud.”

Venezuela

Venezuela is not a major world economy or a large portion of the cryptocurrency investing community. The country’s regulatory stance on cryptocurrencies, however,  is noteworthy because the government, under the restrictive regime of Nicolás Maduro, is seeking to skirt economic sanctions imposed on Venezuela by announcing its own oil-backed “petro” cryptocurrency.

Under Maduro, the country has been divided for years by protests and clashes between opposition parties and the government. Venezuela started off 2017 seemingly seeking to crack down on cryptocurrencies as the Venezuelan Bolivar remained relatively unusable. And even as recently as December 13, 2017, the Maduro government sought to regulate cryptocurrency mining as the newly minted superintendent of cryptocurrencies, Carlos Vargas, announced the compilation of a detailed registry of cryptocurrency miners in the country.

In a country where the fiat currency is worth little and sanctions from the U.S. continue to mount, a state-sanctioned cryptocurrency may cause Venezuela — a typically restrictive regime — to become one of the most progressive countries on cryptocurrency regulations (even if only to further sales of petro).

Japan

Japan isn’t particularly liberal toward digital currency regulation; it’s merely winning the race to attract the best from Asia’s cryptocurrency industry, as China and South Korea have been creating hostile/uncertain environments. Whether or not Japan will allow for a cryptocurrency-themed J-pop band, the Japanese government has certainly been more welcoming of cryptocurrencies than its Asian neighbors.

Recent events may have tempered Japanese enthusiasm for cryptocurrencies, however. The hack of a Japanese exchange on January 26, 2018, resulting in the loss of $530 million worth of NEM coins, has prompted backlash from the community and closer oversight from the Financial Services Agency (FSA).

China

China has been taking ever-increasing actions to clamp down on all things cryptocurrency. Starting off by banning ICOs, China ordered a bank account freeze associated with exchanges, kicked out bitcoin miners, and instituted a nationwide ban on internet and mobile access to all things related to cryptocurrency trading. The People’s Republic of China appears to be the most stringent cryptocurrency regulator of the major economies regarding cryptocurrencies. This is an odd about-face given that, in 2017, Chinese bitcoin miners made up over 50 percent of the worldwide mining population and that cryptocurrency adoption in China increased at a rate higher than any other country.

Though strict, the regulatory actions of the People’s Republic of China, under the stewardship of Xi Jinping, makes contextual sense as the country has recently been focused on stemming capital outflows and stomping out corruption.

South Korea

Where to begin with South Korean regulation? The country boasted a significant cryptocurrency presence in the past and was initially thought of as the country of refuge from the crackdowns occurring in China late last year. However, discord surfaced in January 2018 amongst top Korean officials on future regulatory actions for the digital currency industry, with declarations, clarifications, misinformation and ultimately some limited implementation. The uncertainty and potential negative regulatory impacts have now been cited as the cause for marketwide sell-offs on Red Tuesday as well as on January 30, 2018, when Korean officials began enforcing a January 23, 2018, rule disallowing anonymous accounts from trading cryptocurrencies.

To add external regulatory drama to the political dissonance demonstrated by a government less than a year out from ousting their former president, regulatory prospects for South Koreans have also been hindered by New York State’s Department of Financial Services (DFS), as they reportedly requested customer information on accounts associated with cryptocurrency trading among six commercial Korean banks with branches in New York on January 26, 2018.

Singapore

Until recently, the finance and banking center of Asia has been relatively lax compared to many of its Asian counterparts on cryptocurrency regulation. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), like many financial regulators, warned of risks of speculating in the cryptocurrency markets during the December 2017 peak in bitcoin prices. And Singapore’s International Commercial Court heard a trial that same month over a bitcoin trading dispute, seeming to legitimize the economic stakes in dispute.

On January 9, 2018, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said that “the country’s laws do not make any distinction between transactions conducted using fiat currency, cryptocurrency or other novel ways of transmitting value.”

MAS fintech chief Sopnendu Mohanty on January 24, 2018 did state that he does not foresee a Lehman Brothers-like financial meltdown with Bitcoin at this point in time, adding that there is “a great indication that regulators are getting serious about this whole cryptocurrency market.”

Mohanty also stated regulators would need to apply consumer protections for digital currencies like bitcoin for it to continue to grow. While there has been no statement yet from the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the $530 million hack that attacked Japanese exchange Coincheck on January 26, 2018, targeted Singaporean-based NEM coins.

India

India, once viewed as a burgeoning, friendly environment for cryptocurrencies, has been clamping down on cryptocurrencies in 2018. India’s tough stance stems from similar concerns that other, more stringent regulatory regimes have cited: money laundering, illegal activity proliferation, sponsorship of terrorism, tax evasion, etc. While the cash-reliant country is facing stern regulations, participants of the local cryptocurrency industry do not believe India can “ban” cryptocurrencies through regulations in the same way China has.

Australia

In the wake of the August 2017 financial scandal surrounding the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the Australian government sought to follow in Japan’s footsteps by strengthening its anti-money laundering laws and regulating digital currencies. This differed slightly from the view in 2015 that the Aussie government would seek a “hands-off” approach to cryptocurrencies. Still, the lack of more concise regulation has purportedly had a negative impact on the country as the end of 2017 saw Australian cryptocurrency brokers halt Australian dollar deposits. December 2017 also saw an issuance from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) which hinted at the way potential future regulation could go. The ATO guidance stated:

Transacting with bitcoin is akin to a barter arrangement, with similar tax consequences. Our view is that bitcoin is neither money nor a foreign currency, and the supply of bitcoin is not a financial supply for goods and services tax (GST) purposes. Bitcoin is, however, an asset for capital gains tax (CGT) purposes.

Australia, however, has supporters of digital currencies in government, as August 2017 sawsenators from both major parties (Labor and Coalition) stepping forward to call on the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) to accept cryptocurrencies as an official form of currency. Therefore, the future of further cryptocurrency regulation remains uncertain but potentially industry-friendly in the land down under.

United Kingdom/European Union

While Brexit is scheduled to force the U.K. and the European Union to part ways in March 2019, the United Kingdom and the EU remain united in their plans to regulate cryptocurrencies. On December 4, 2017, The Guardian and The Telegraph reported that the U.K. Treasury and the EU both had made plans aimed at ending anonymity for cryptocurrency traders, citing anti-money laundering and tax evasion crackdowns.

The European Union plan would require cryptocurrency platforms to conduct proper due diligence on customers and report any suspicious transactions. Likewise, the Treasury of the United Kingdom stated that they are “working to address concerns about the use of cryptocurrencies by negotiating to bring virtual currency exchange platforms and some wallet providers within anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing regulation.” The Treasury did, however, add that “there is little current evidence of [cryptocurrencies] being used to launder money, though this risk is expected to grow.”

While one European Union commissioner, Pierre Moscovici, stated in an interview with Bloomberg on December 18, 2017, that the EU was not looking to regulate bitcoin, the commissioner’s statements seemed out of sync with prior and consequential messaging. Two days later, Moscovici’s message was seemingly countermanded by Valdis Dombrovskis, vice president of the European Commission (the Executive for the European Union), when he toldreporters in Brussels that:

There are clear risks for investors and consumers associated to price volatility, including the risk of complete loss of investment, operational and security failures, market manipulation and liability gaps.

Calls for greater cryptocurrency regulations echoed across Europe in January 2018. On January 15, 2018, French Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire announced the creation of a working group with the purpose of regulating cryptocurrencies. Similarly, Joachim Wuermeling, a board member of the German Bundesbank, called for effective regulation of virtual currencies on a global scale.

On January 22, 2018, Dombrovskis furthered his regulatory agenda for cryptocurrencies by writing three of the EU’s watch dogs warning them of a bubble in bitcoin. On January 25, 2018, embattled U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May joined the fray, echoing the sentiments of International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde and U.S. President Donald Trump. When speaking to Bloomberg during the World Economic Forum at Davos, the prime minister stated, “We should be looking at these very seriously — precisely because of the way they can be used, particularly by criminals.”

While the U.K. and EU have not announced finalized regulations of cryptocurrencies, an expected announcement is likely due in the spring.

Switzerland

Switzerland, known for its progressive attitudes toward individual rights in banking, has kept a similar attitude toward cryptocurrency regulation. The Western European country is conspicuously absent from the European Union and appears to have an open attitude toward the cryptocurrency industry.

Johann Schneider-Ammann, economics minister, told reporters on January 18, 2018, that he wants Switzerland to be “the crypto-nation.” According to an article by the Financial Times, Jörg Gasser, state secretary at the Swiss finance ministry, stated, “We want it [the ICO market] to prosper but without compromising standards or the integrity of our financial markets.”

To that end, on January 18, 2018, the Swiss set up an ICO working group with an aim to “increase legal certainty, maintain the integrity of the financial center and ensure technology-neutral regulation.” The working group will report to the Swiss Federal Council by the end of 2018.

Russia

Russia, like South Korea, can’t seem to decide how it wants to handle cryptocurrency regulations. In September 2017, Russian Federation Central Bank chief Elvira Nabiullina saidthe central bank was against regulating cryptocurrencies as currency (as a payment for goods and services) and against equating them with a foreign currency. This statement seemed toindicate a progressive hands-off approach was in store for the cryptocurrency industry in Russia.

However, on September 8, 2017, the deputy finance minister for the Russian Federation, Alexei Moiseev, told reporters at a Moscow financial forum that settlements of payments in cryptocurrencies “are not legal now.” The deputy minister continued, stating, “Obviously, now there is a legal vacuum, and accordingly it’s hard for me to say if these actions are legal or not.”

Until these statements, the position proposed by the Russian federation was to allow only “qualified investors” to deal with cryptocurrencies. Russian President Vladimir Putin sided with the position of the Finance Ministry on October 11, 2017, when the president said that the use of cryptocurrencies carries serious risks, being an opportunity for laundering criminal capitals, evading taxes, financing terrorism and spreading fraudulent schemes that would victimize Russian citizens.

The Finance Ministry continued its strict regulatory posturing by suggesting a taxation on cryptocurrency mining ventures on December 28, 2017. The new year began with even more hints at a Russian crackdown on cryptocurrencies, as Putin again sided with the Ministry of Finance on January 11, 2018, when he remarked that legislative regulation of the cryptocurrency market may be needed in the future.

President Putin stated, “This is the prerogative of the Central Bank at present and the Central Bank has sufficient authority so far. However, in broad terms, legislative regulation will be definitely required in the future.” (translation by TASS)

Two weeks later, on January 25, 2018, the Finance Ministry published a draft law “On Digital Financial Assets.” The law, if finalized, would define tokens, establish ICO procedures and determine the legal regime for cryptocurrencies and mining.

Presidential candidate Boris Titov decried the proposed legislation on January 26, 2018, stating that the draft law was excessively strict. According to Titov’s press service, “The Finance Ministry’s proposals present a much tougher regulation than in Japan, Switzerland, Belarus [and] Armenia; that is, in all countries that have adopted some form of legislation. It would be better not to adopt anything than to adopt such legislation.”

Further muddying the waters was a concession by Deputy Minister Moiseev that the December 2017 Belarusian adoption of the “Digital Economy Development Ordinance” could cause capital outflows from Russia to neighboring Belarus if heavy crypto-regulation occurred in the Russian Federation.

Nigeria

Last year saw Africa’s largest economy struggle through a recession that caused a “crunch” to its fiat currency. Bitcoin trading boomed as Nigerians used cryptocurrencies to end-run currency controls restricting access to the dollar put in place to curtail the recession. January 2017 started off with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) seeming to ban cryptocurrencies, only to have CBN Deputy Director Musa Itopa Jimoh walk back the position by stating, the “Central bank cannot control or regulate bitcoin. [the] Central bank cannot control or regulate blockchain. Just the same way no one is going to control or regulate the internet. We don’t own it.” Bitcoin trading boomed by 1500 percent during 2017.

Though the IMF report from December 2017 said the country has exited its recession, tepid GDP growth forecasts and reliance on crude oil exports make calls on January 25, 2018, from CBN Governor Edwin Emefiele to regulate cryptocurrencies seem tenuous. The CBN governor stated, “Cryptocurrency or bitcoin is like a gamble … We cannot, as a central bank, give support to situations where people risk their savings to ‘gamble.’”

Ghana

The governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, stated on January 22, 2018, that “Bitcoin is not yet legal tender” at a media briefing. While there is a bill before Ghanaian parliament which will allow for the use of cryptocurrencies (seemingly with companies registered as “Electronic Money Issuers” by the government), the current stance of bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies) is, according to Graphic Online, one of “six countries that have outlawed [bitcoin].” Addison’s statements come weeks after a recommendation from the Ghanaian investment bank, Group Ndoum, suggested that the Bank of Ghana invest 1 percent of its reserves in bitcoin.

South Africa

South Africa is relatively progressive on the subject of cryptocurrencies compared to others on the list. While the 2014 position paper on virtual currencies issued by the South African Reserve Bank seemed promising for the industry, the South African government began in July of 2017 to work with Bankymoon, a blockchain-based solutions provider, on creating a “balanced” approach to bitcoin regulation.

The country has had valuation issues with its fiat currency, the South African Rand, being devalued several times over the past decade. The 2015 devaluation saw the rand drop 26 percent in response to the Chinese yuan devaluing by a mere 2 percent. Most recently, the country faced devaluation prospects again in March of 2017 as the president fired South Africa’s finance minister. The country has remained relatively mum on cryptocurrency regulation in January 2018, but it will be interesting to see if the reliance South Africa’s fiat currency has on China translates at all to its regulatory stance on cryptocurrencies.

South Korea says no plans to ban cryptocurrency exchanges

South Korea’s finance minister said the government has no plans to shut down cryptocurrency trading, welcome news for investors worried that authorities might go as far as China’s tough action in blocking virtual coin platforms.

The comment by Kim Dong-yeon on Wednesday comes as traders at home and around the world have been spooked by conflicting comments from government officials in South Korea, a major hub for cryptocurrency trade, that Seoul was planning to ban local digital coin exchanges.

“There is no intention to ban or suppress cryptocurrency (market),” Kim said, adding the government’s immediate task is to regulate exchanges.

Reinforcing Seoul’s intent to tighten the screws on a market widely seen as opaque and risky by global policymakers, the country’s customs earlier on Wednesday announced it had uncovered illegal cryptocurrency foreign exchange trading worth nearly $600 million.

“Customs service has been closely looking at illegal foreign exchange trading using cryptocurrency as part of the government’s task force,” it said.

South Korea has been at the forefront of pushing for broad regulatory oversight of cryptocurrency trading as many locals, including students and housewives, jumped into a frenzied market despite warnings from policy makers around the world of a bubble.

Seoul previously said that it is considering shutting down local cryptocurrency exchanges, which threw the market into turmoil and hammered bitcoin prices. Officials later clarified that an outright ban is only one of the steps being considered, and a final decision was yet to be made.

CRYPTO CRIMES

Customs said about 637.5 billion won ($596.02 million) worth of foreign exchange crimes were detected.

Illegal foreign currency trading of 472.3 billion formed the bulk of the cryptocurrency crimes, it said in a statement, but gave no details on what action authorities were taking against the rule breaches.

In one case, an illegal FX agency collected a total of 1.7 billion won ($1.59 million) from local residents in a form of “electric wallet” coins to transfer it to a partner agent abroad. The partner agent then cashed them out and distributed the settlement to clients based in that country, according to the statement.

In South Korea, only licensed banks and brokers can offer foreign exchange services. Local companies and residents who move more than $3,000 out of the country at a time must submit documents to tax authorities explaining reasons for the transfers. Annual overseas transfers of more than $50,000 must also be reported with similar documents.

Effective from Jan. 30, authorities imposed rules which allow only real-name bank accounts to be used for cryptocurrency trading designed to stop virtual coins from being used for money laundering and other crimes.

Among other breaches, Customs said there were also cases where investors in Japan sent their yen worth 53.7 billion won to their partners in South Korea for illegal currency trade.

It said authorities will continue to monitor for any violations of foreign exchange rules or of money laundering activities.

Bitcoin stood at $10,123.13 as of 0842 GMT on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange. The heightened regulatory scrutiny around the world, however, has seen bitcoin dive about 27.1 percent so far this month, on track for its biggest monthly decline since January 2015.

Cryptocurrencies got another jolt last week after Tokyo-based exchange Coincheck said hackers stole over $500 million in one of the world’s biggest cyber heists.

The cryptocurrency investing course

Toward the start of the mid year I had a major issue.

I simply acknowledged another occupation and between the work hours, the drive, suppers, and an exercise I was left with at most a hour of available time a day amid the work week.

This was a noteworthy issue since I’m a learning someone who is addicted. I should ace something outside of work or I begin to stagnate. However, a hour daily didn’t appear as though it would have been sufficient to go anyplace regarding any matter.

So I asked myself “How would i be able to best use a hour daily?”

I did what I generally do when looked with an intense problem, I was inclining towards learning Spanish, yet then I had three companions message me about cryptocurrency. Every one of them said this was something I expected to look into. After a half hour of perusing about cryptocurrency  I knew I had discovered my task for the late spring.

Making a plunge

At to begin with, the perusing was energizing. Digital money, a transformation in electronic cash exchange that could without much of a stretch snowball into something as world-changing as the web.

I altogether delighted in perusing the distinctive strategies for success every digital money had. Every one had their own procedure to secure their place in the market. I thought it was captivating to see a cash have a strategy for success.

My first obstacle, the blockchain

I hit my first wall when learning about the blockchain. The blockchain is one of the most important technologies underlying how cryptocurrencies work. Unfortunately, I found learning about the blockchain boring and confusing. It was the last thing I wanted to be reading about after a tough day at work.

I started to lose interest in cryptocurrency. My once productive hour started to get whittled down by Facebook, emails and other distractions. I had to do something to get myself back on track, but how could I make the blockchain interesting?

I decided I would make some stakes.

I found a reputable online cryptocurrency exchange, typed in my credit card number and bought 100 dollars worth of Litecoin (a cryptocurrency).

At the time I didn’t even know how to transfer the cryptocurrency back into U.S. dollars. For all I knew I just sent my money into the oblivion.

But, now I was an investor.

I felt more connected to the subject, it was the breath of fresh air I needed. The next day I sat down and read as feverishly as an ivy league researcher.

I decided to make a class out of it

I was impressed by how much of an impact investing had on my motivation so I decided to take it a step further. I decided to turn this little adventure of mine into a class.

I refined the subject from cryptocurrency to cryptocurrency investing and decided the cost of the class would be 5000 dollars.

I would throw 5000 dollars into the cryptocurrency market assuming I would lose it all. I figured the knowledge I would gain from learning about investing and cryptocurrency would be worth much more than the 5000 dollar cost.

Why 5000 dollars?

  1. It was around the cost of a class on investing at a top university
  2. It was 90% of the savings I would make over the summer. I wanted it to be a large enough amount that I would have an emotional connection to the money. I wanted to see how I would react when I started losing it.

*I don’t recommend anyone else invest such a large portion of their savings.

What did my course look like:

  1. Read and take notes on a classic investing book. [ June 1st to June 14th]
  2. Obtain a high-level understanding of what cryptocurrencies are and what their future applications might be [June 15th to June 26th]
  3. Pick up to three cryptocurrencies to invest in [ June 27th to July 11th]
  4. Develop a buying and selling strategy [July 12th to July 13th]
  5. Invest and see what happens [July 14th — Sept. 1st]

1) Read and take notes on a classic investing book

I only had enough time in my course for one book on traditional investing so I had to be very picky about it.

After asking mentors, friends, and the internet, the most commonly cited book was “The Intelligent Investor” by Benjamin Graham. I decided this would be the book for my course.

While parts of the book were a little dated (it came out in 1949) I found the core principals helpful.

  1. Do your research into a company and only invest when you are confident they have a high chance of long-term success.
  2. Don’t let the market scare you, rely on the research you did.
  3. Stick to a formula, don’t arbitrarily buy and sell.

2) Obtain an overview of what cryptocurrencies are and what their future applications might be

I used a combination of podcasts, YouTube videos, and websites to educate myself about the cryptocurrency space. I cheated a little bit on my hour rule and listened to the podcasts during my commute.

My main takeaways were that cryptocurrencies are a cheaper, more secure and more versatile way to digitally transfer money.

There is a lot more to be said on this subject that I’ll write about in a separate piece. I’ve included all the resources I used at the end of this article in case anyone wants to jump into the subject.

3) Research and pick up to three cryptocurrencies to invest in

I didn’t want to invest in more than three cryptocurrencies because I felt that even three was spreading my focus too thin.

As per Benjamin Graham’s advice I wanted to have a deep understanding of each cryptocurrency(or company) I was investing in. This would take a lot of time and time was something I didn’t have much of.

After doing light research into ten different cryptocurrencies I decided I liked Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ripple. So I started to dig deeper into these three currencies. I looked at:

  • How strong is their team
  • What is their long-term strategy
  • Who is backing them

I was happy with what I found and confident that these three currencies had a high chance of long-term success. So now all I had to do was figure out a plan of action.

4) Develop a buying and selling strategy

I wanted to keep my buying and selling strategy simple so I gave myself three rules:

  1. Don’t buy when it is at an all-time high
  2. Don’t sell for a loss, meaning I would either earn a profit or lose everything if the currency disappeared
  3. Sell when my investment went up by 35%

I picked the 35% target because it seemed unreachable for a two-month investment.

5) Invest and see what happens

I had my cryptocurrencies of choice and I had my buying and selling strategy, now all that was left was to invest.

In mid-July, I started to put my money into the market.

I invested 2000 dollars into Ethereum on July 14th at ~ $203/ether

I invested 2000 dollars into Ripple on July 14th at ~$0.19/ripple

I invested 1000 dollars into Bitcoin on July 14th at ~$2300/bitcoin

Then the real life portion of the course started

The first few moments after the money left my bank account were good. I felt like a success for committing to a big plan, but then panic set in.

I always thought the mental side of investing was overplayed. I’m a logical, easy going individual, I didn’t think fluctuations in market price would affect me. Plus I had even planned to lose all the money I invested. Losing or earning money wasn’t going to corrupt me.

Well, I was wrong.

My life exploded

After my money went into the market, the hour a day I allotted for my cryptocurrency investing course became insufficient. My life quickly became ruled by my investments.

I developed an awful habit of checking the price charts every ten minutes. If the investments were doing well I’d get a hit of dopamine and feel great. If my investments were doing bad I would freak out and start pouring over market analysis after market analysis.

I forgot everything I learned in “The Intelligent Investor”. I let the market play with my emotions.

I reached a breaking point at the end of July. After staying up late for the third night in a row reading about cryptocurrency news and price predictions, I slept through my morning alarm. I wound up waking up late and missing an important meeting at work.

After a myriad of apologies to the vice presidents of the company, I was ready to end my course.

I told myself “This isn’t worth my job”

How I got my life back on track

I sat with that thought the whole day. Then I looked at the problem as if I was really taking a university class.

If I got a bad grade in a class would I drop it? No! I would figure out why I got the bad grade and then develop a strategy so it didn’t happen again.

I decided I could do it, it was OK that I failed, failure is how you learn.

I reminded myself why I was taking the course, to learn, not to make money. I knew that I was going to need more than willpower to stop myself from looking at the price charts and market analysis thought. So I found two tools that I would depend on.

Tool number one: Blockfolio

  • Blockfolio is a phone app that lets you set price targets for your cryptocurrency investments. I set it so I would only get alerted if my investments ever hit their targets. This way I had no good reason to convince myself that I needed to check the price charts.

Tool number two: A bet with my friend

  • I gave a friend 50 dollars and told him if I read one more market analysis to burn the money in front of my face. It was the honor system so I could always just lie to him about it, but I knew I would feel like a scumbag if I did and no one likes feeling like a scumbag.

The week following my break down was tough. I wanted to check how my investments were doing constantly. I kept reassuring myself that Blockfolio would notify me if anything major happened.

One day I even sat with “Ethereum price analysis” typed into google for 5 minutes. My mouse sat there hovering over the search button, but I wouldn’t let myself click. I didn’t want to to have 50 dollars burned in front of my face.

After the initial week, it got much easier and then near the end of August, my phone started buzzing off the table.

So how did my investments fair?

On August 6th, while I was furiously typing away at a report my phone came to life.

It said:

“Bitcoin is above 3105”

$3105 was my 35% price target! I didn’t know what to do, I told myself I would sell when it hit 35% but I couldn’t bring my self to sell. I was so high on the fact that I hit what I thought was an impossible target that I thought I could do anything. So I said while if it hit 35%, 45% shouldn’t be much of a stretch.

Then on August 9th my phone buzzed again

“ Ethereum is above 274”

and again

“Bitcoin is above 3,335”

$3,335! An all-time high for bitcoin! (at least back then it was), the confidence I had three days earlier started to melt away. Would the price keep going up, or would the whole market collapse. Did I invest in a scam and was the carpet about to be pulled out from underneath me?

I was letting the market control my emotions again, so I took a long walk and thought.

I had confidence that all three cryptocurrencies I picked had a future, but I only had three weeks left of my course. How could I best play these last three weeks?

I looked at my three investments and saw Bitcoin and Ethereum jumping up but Ripple staying relatively calm.

I reasoned that the jump in Bitcoin and Ethereum would bring new investors to the market. These new investors might be interested in ripple just like I was. I also knew other investors had to be afraid that the bitcoin price might crash because of its quick rise.

I thought other investors might want to hedge their bets against a bitcoin crash by moving money out of bitcoin and into other currencies. Ripple had a high chance of being one of those other currencies.

So I put all my investments and earnings into ripple.

On August 10, I invested all of my Bitcoin and Ethereum ($4150 worth) into ripple at ~0.18 dollars/ripple

So now I had $6150 invested in ripple. I set an alert on Blockfolio for 0.24 dollars/ripple ( 35% increase) and did my best to forgot about the whole thing.

Unfortunately, news kept popping up about Bitcoin reaching all new heights. It made me feel like an idiot for not keeping my money in Bitcoin. Why did I switch it all over to ripple I should have put it in Bitcoin.

Frustrated I called a close friend and mentor to tell him about my stupid investment decisions. After I told him what a moron I was, he gave me the best piece of investment advice I’ve ever received.

He said “ Joe, this is one of the biggest problems with investing, everybody is trying to buy at the feet and sell at the head. The thing is, you never know when you are at either. Instead, aim for buying at the knees and selling at the shoulders. Don’t beat yourself up if it goes higher, be happy with what you made. If you get greedy and try to go for the head those investments will ruin your life.”

I stopped stressing about missing out on bitcoins rise in price and instead was happy with how well I was doing at this investment course. I wasn’t calling every shot perfectly but so far I had turned 3000 into 4150 in less than a month, I should be proud of that.

Then on August 24th while I was in a meeting my phone went off

“Ripple is above 0.24”

By the time I got out of the meeting the price had already hit 0.27. Part of me wanted to hold on for longer, but I remembered my friend’s advice, aim for the shoulders, not the head. I sold it all right then and there.

My initial 2000 dollar investment grew to 2,842 dollars and my 4150 investment had grown to 6,225.

I still had 7 days left in my investment course but under the mantra of “don’t be greedy,” I decided to keep it out of the market. I spent the last week reflecting on the experience.

In total my 5000 investment turned into 9,064 dollars. Not too shabby for a month and a half. At the same time, people are currently seeing 1000% plus returns in this market so I shouldn’t get too full of myself. I still have a long way to go.


Key Takeaways

1) If spent right, a focused hour a day can compound to something huge

The key to making a focused hour add up to something major is to first figure out your goal.

  • My goal was to learn about cryptocurrency investing.

Then you have to break down your goal into measurable, time-sensitive chunks.

  • I did this by making my course, i.e read and take notes on “The Intelligent Investor” by June 14th

Finally, you have to set some metric to measure your overall success. How will you know when you accomplished your goal?

  • I did this by adding in the 35% selling target

2) Having trouble sticking to your plan, set stakes

If you find your motivation waning, give yourself some real-life consequences for not achieving your goal. If you do this, I guarantee you’ll be more motivated to accomplish your goal.

  • I did this three times throughout the summer. The first time was when I invested 100 dollars in Litecoin. The second was when I invested 5000 dollars into Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ripple. Finally, the third time was when I gave my friend 50 dollars to burn in front of my face if I looked at one more market analysis. Each of these gave me real consequences for not continuing towards my goal.

3) Losing or earning money on an investment will mess with your head, be prepared for it

This was the biggest revelation for me. I didn’t think investing was going to take over my life as much as it did. I severely underestimated how much it was going to play with my emotions.

If you invest, prepare some mechanisms so that the status of your investments isn’t the status of your life.

4) Don’t trust the market analysis, trust your research

When making an investment don’t let the market rule your life. Do research on whatever you are investing in and trust in your research, not the market analysis.

5) You will never trade at the best moment, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make money

You will never time all of the peaks and valleys in the market correctly. Stick to your buying strategy and don’t worry about what could have been. Focus on what you should do next.

7 Investors Who Put Millions Into Cryptocurrency

In case you’re searching for counsel about crypocurrencies , the most vital voices to take after originate from the individuals who have put their cash where their mouth is. Financial specialists who have emptied extensive aggregates into bitcoin, ethereum  , monero and other blockchain-sponsored monetary forms aren’t simply guiding other individuals. They have genuine skin in the amusement. When they tell individuals that they’re hanging on and not offering, you can be sure that they truly do have confidence in advanced monetary standards.

Here are seven individuals with real digital money ventures who are upbeat to tell other individuals what they’re doing.

Marc van der Chijs

Marc van der Chijs knows a developing open door when he sees one. He used to be situated in China where his ventures included tudou.com, a Chinese YouTube. Since moving to Canada, he’s pulled out all the stops into digital currency. He’s currently an executive of FirstCoin.com, a venture bank for token and coin offerings. Take after his tweets for a hopeful yet practical perspective of digital money.

Ari Paul

Ari Paul is the CIO and fellow benefactor of BlockTower Capital, a specific digital currency speculation organization. His experience is in venture administration, and he likewise writes about crypto contributing at the TheCryptocurrencyInvestor.com. It’s a site that ought to be on each digital money holder’s perusing list.

Michael Novogratz

Michael Novogratz has surely put his cash where his mouth is. In December 2017, as the dollar cost of bitcoin was dropping essentially, he tweeted that 30 percent of his total assets was in crypto resources. In any case, he likewise noticed that his cryptographic money venture firm Galaxy Digital had put a crypto fence investments on hold. He stays bullish on cryptographic forms of money yet watch his activities to track here and now developments.

The Winklevoss Twins

Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss may be best known for blaming Mark Zuckerberg for taking their thought for an informal organization, yet they now run Gemini, a digital money exchanging stage. In April 2013, when bitcoin was worth $120, they purchased $11 million worth of coins, around 1 percent of the considerable number of coins available for use at the time. That buy has since made them among the primary bitcoin extremely rich people.

Barry Silbert

In December 2014, the US Marshall’s office sold off 50,000 bitcoins that it had seized from Silk Road, an online commercial center for the most part utilized for offering unlawful merchandise. Everything except 2,000 of those bitcoins were purchased by Barry Silbert, the originator and CEO of Digital Currency Group, a cryptographic money venture firm. That early buy at $350 per coin transformed $16.8 million into more than $670 million inside three years. He’s as yet giving digital currency venture counsel.

Tim Draper

Of those 50,000 bitcoins, the staying 2,000 went to Tim Draper. A customary financial speculator who runs his own VC firm, Draper has likewise turned into an evangelist for all things crypto. Like other bitcoin financial specialists, he stays idealistic notwithstanding when the market falls. Read his tweets to discover why.

Juthica Chou

Juthica Chou is the president and fellow benefactor of LedgerX. Her experience is in customary subsidiaries exchanging yet LedgerX is the primary stage for purchasing bitcoin choices that is governmentally controlled. It gives an approach to institutional financial specialists to partake in the development of digital money. She’s not on Twitter, but rather the blog at LedgerX gives an awesome understanding into the long haul prospects of cryptographic money.

One crypto strategy that work: A basket of low market cap coins

I’ve been investing some energy attempting to thoroughly consider where the famous hockey puck will go in cryptocurrency money, and here’s one thought I think may work.

At the present time, in the event that you place $100 in an investment account, you’d be fortunate to get even $2 every year. However, with this move in cryptographic forms of money to Proof of Stake, the correct pick could net you $50 to $80 every year for that underlying $100 speculation.

Moving from Proof of Work to Proof of Stake is one major investigation happening now

The predominant digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum work on verification of work. Diggers need to do genuinely confounded math issues to make sense of what the subsequent stage in the blockchain will be. Consequently, they get a mining reward, which is the essential type of swelling for generally monetary standards.

Verification of stake is unique. Rather than costly GPU-based or ASIC-based mining rigs, you simply run an ordinary, non-computationally-serious bit of programming on any sort of PC, and connect your “stake” — some measure of the digital currency that you are setting up as evidence that you are running the correct programming and won’t attempt to cheat the framework. In the event that you are found tricking, you lose the sum you set up for stake. This is essential in that now ordinary individuals who simply hold the cash can really get a loan fee on holding it.

Creating yield is a major ordeal

This diverts crypto from a negative convey resource (like gold, or placing cash in your sleeping pad) into one that really produces yield.

The world’s capital is frantic for yield nowadays, which is the reason money markets is so overheated, why pessimistic or close to zero financing cost loaning now exists, and why individuals are so stressed over resource value bubbles extensively. Individuals need to develop their capital and it has never been harder to discover reliable approaches to get it.

For example, take a gander at the eye-popping 11% rate of profit you would get for’s return in 1984!

The times of hazard less return were our folks’ age, and not our own. In any case, digital forms of money that utilization evidence of stake for accord have the guarantee of a steady 3% to 8% yearly yield, in light of the fact that as opposed to offer that to diggers to run the system, they can simply impart them to holders who will stake.

One system with unbalanced upside: A crate of low market top Proof-of-Stake coins

Evidence of Stake hasn’t been demonstrated to work at the sort of scale that Bitcoin or Ethereum have had yet. Crypto specialists have quite disparate suppositions on whether it will work at scale after some time, which is a hazard that is forestalling selection now.

In any case, as with anything new, it needs to begin some place, and that is the place coins like Decred and Navcoin are driving the route in the endeavor. Navcoin (at the season of composing) is around $100M showcase top, and Decred is around $220M. On the off chance that both of them can get the chance to top 10 cryptographic forms of money, that is a 10X in esteem from here. Clearly these things are dependably a ridiculously enormous if, however I like it as a wager with exceedingly topsy-turvy upside.

Navcoin yields around 5% every year, except Decred yields up to 31% exacerbated every year. That is entirely astounding. Yet, in the event that the coin itself can 10X in esteem, you’re taking a gander at half to 80% yearly yield on the underlying fiat you may use to purchase in. I like a one-time half increment in esteem, yet what’s far and away superior to that is an a half to 310% yield each year into what’s to come. Those yields stack as you increment your possessions in every digital currency also, which is another pleasant intensifying impact like naturally re-putting profits into a stock.

The rundown of PoS coins is entirely long, and a comprehensive survey of them is left as an activity to the peruser. A fragmented rundown of more well known ones notwithstanding the ones above incorporate Peercoin (one of the first to do it), Lisk coin (biggest by advertise top), Nxt coin , and numerous others. I’ve additionally observed perusing coin subreddits to be quite important—these coins have a tendency to live beyond words designer and group intrigue, and you can get an awesome measure on these things through their gatherings and subreddits.

Verification of Stake isn’t the main way you can get yield from these coins. NEO is another coin (named the Ethereum of China) that gives NEO wallet holders another coin called GAS, which at current time yields around 4.8%.

The considerable thing is whether you are an early holder of Ethereum, you’ll as of now get this impact hugely, if/when the Casper move up to Proof of Stake enters the photo one year from now.

At long last, I would suggest little sums (maybe with a dollar cost normal system) that you wouldn’t be disturbed about losing, and as a piece of a portfolio to such an extent that in the event that one Proof of Stake cryptographic money doesn’t work out (and be set up for most to stagnate or fall flat) you have a not too bad shot at owning the possible victor. The best thing about hilter kilter upside is that you can at most lose 1X, yet have the potential for significantly more on the flipside.