China Stablecoin and Trading Appetite Dwarfs Global Demand 9911

China

On-chain data shows Tether movements hitting a new all-time-high for 2Q19 with one month left on the calendar for the period. What is most striking, however, is the volume coming in and out of Chinese exchanges dwarfs western and global trading venues and accounts for more than half of the total transaction value of known parties.

Data provided to Diar by blockchain analysis firm Chainalysis highlights the magnitude of Chinese Tether demand with over $16Bn received by exchanges based in that market in 2018. This year the number has already surpassed an outstanding $10Bn, setting the stage for the biggest year yet.

2019 to date flows into exchanges catering primarily for Chinese traders beat the $7Bn of all the transactional value for 2017.

Tether on-chain movements stateside account for a tiny 3% of known volumes at $450Mn, more than $10Bn less than flows sent and received by Chinese exchanges.

And the demand is on the rise. In the 2018 bear market, Chinese exchanges accounted for 39% of all known on-chain transaction value for Tether. This year to date, the red dragon is responsible for a whopping 60%.

Global exchanges like Binance and Bitfinex have a share equivalent to half that at 31%, dropping from the 47% share seen for both 2017 and 2018.

US-based exchanges saw their share of the stablecoin demand/trading drop from 44% in 2017 to less than 10% in 2018.

This isn’t a matter of cashing out. The stablecoin movements on-chain are just shy of netting out between sent and received funds, indicating a cyclical nature and trading desire across all exchanges. The on/off nature is likely due to custody reasons from potential exchange hack concerns (see chart 3).

This similar character in the net balance of sent and received funds globally and across all regions suggests legitimate flows. There is no disparity or alternative behavior in the movement of Tethers sent to Chinese exchanges versus the transactions sent to regulated US-based trading venues.

On-chain movements out of China are telling and in stark contrast to what the industry now perceives as nothing more than fake volume following an extensive report by Bitwise, an asset management firm that filed for a Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Bitwise, which looked into 83 exchanges, found a mere 10 to be compliant across its own tests. And there are clear examples of dubious trading volumes that resemble simple algorithms filling up order books that fall far from reputable exchange trading trends.

On-Chain transactional volume in 2019 has gone up in unison with reported trading volumes.

While it may not be comparing apples to apples, it’s not comparing apples to oranges either. Massive amounts of funds are being moved into exchanges in China for no other purpose than trading. Even a single trade of Tethers moved onto Chinese exchanges would equal daily volumes equivalent to $215Mn for the month of April (the period Bitwise analyzed), which is three times as much as Coinbase and on par with Binance (see chart 5). This does not even take into account funds sitting on the exchanges.

The similarities in percentages of reported trading volume versus Tethers moved on and off exchanges is certainly not proof-of-innocence (POI) nor vindicating of potential wash trading and fake volumes.

But in consideration of the billions in Tethers moved on-chain in China that towers over US and world market transactional value, the estimate by Bitwise of 95% of cryptocurrency trading volume being fake is also likely to be far off the mark, possibly by magnitudes.

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BTC, BCH, XMR, XTZ and LINK 20066

LINK

XTZ/USD

Tezos (XTZ) is the best performer of the past seven days with a massive jump of over 40%. It shot up after Coinbase announced that it will onboard the cryptocurrency on its professional trading platform, Coinbase Pro. The four-stage process will start with inbound XTZ transfers on August 5. Huobi Wallet tweeted that it will be a Tezos baker and support XTZ in the near future. Blockchain development company Truffle announced that it will add support for the Tezos blockchain protocol in its developer suit. These favorable fundamental news helped the digital currency rake up strong gains. However, can this continue or will the rally peter out after the news-based rally? Let’s analyze the charts.

XTZ/USD

The XTZ/USD pair has formed a cup and handle reversal pattern, which will complete on a breakout and close (UTC time frame) above $1.85. Following the breakout, the target objective is $3.37 and above it $4.20. The moving averages have completed a bullish crossover and the RSI has jumped into positive territory, which suggests that bulls are back in the game.

However, the failure of bulls to close the week near the highest point shows profit booking at higher levels. If the price fails to break out of $1.85, the reversal pattern will not come into play and a few weeks of consolidation between $0.83 and $1.85 are possible.

Traders can buy on a close (UTC time frame) above $1.85 and keep a stop loss of $0.82. Until then, it is better to remain on the sidelines.

LINK/USD

Unlike other major cryptocurrencies, Chainlink (LINK) has been volatile and has been finding a place either among the top losers or the top gainers for the past few weeks. This week, it has again found a place as a top gainer. Oracle announced a partnership with Chainlink, which is a big boost for the project. In other news, Callisto Network announced integration of Chainlink Oracles and Zilliqa tied up with Chainlink to power its smart contracts. While the fundamental news flow has been positive, let’s see what the chart projects.

LINK/USD

The LINK/USD pair has found support at the 61.8% Fibonacci retracement levels of $2.0175 for three successive weeks. This makes it an important level to watch on the downside.

On the upside, bulls might face resistance at $2.8498, above which, the pair is likely to pick up momentum and rally towards the lifetime high. Therefore, traders can wait for the price to scale and close (UTC time frame) above $2.8498 before attempting long positions.

If bulls fail to propel the price above $2.8498, the pair might remain range-bound for a few weeks. Our bullish view will be negated if bears sink and sustain the digital currency below $2.0175.

BTC/USD

Bitcoin (BTC) has gained in double digits in the past seven days. The past week saw a flare-up of trade war between China and the U.S. and a rate cut by the U.S. Federal Reserve. Peter Tchir, former Executive Director at Deutsche Bank, said that Bitcoin acts as a lead indicator to hidden geopolitical tensions.

Fundstrat Global Advisors co-founder Tom Lee and a report by research firm Delphi Digital said that dovish policies of central banks will be bullish for the leading cryptocurrency. On the news that central banks have been buying a record quantity of gold, Anthony Pompliano said that central banks will start hedging their assets with Bitcoin if they “find out about the non-correlated, asymmetric upside profile of Bitcoin.”

Can Bitcoin extend its rally in the next few weeks? Let’s find out.

BTC/USD

In strong uptrends, the pullbacks are usually arrested at the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level of the entire rally. The BTC/USD pair found support between the 38.2% and 50% retracement levels, which is a positive sign. Both moving averages are sloping up and the RSI is in positive territory. This suggests that bulls are firmly in command.

The up-move might face some resistance at the downtrend line, above which, the pair can retest the recent highs of $13,973.50. This level might see some profit-booking, but once crossed, we expect buyers to pile in and push the price toward $17,208.84.

Our bullish view will be invalidated if the price turns down from the downtrend line and plummets below $9,080. That will indicate selling at higher levels and might catch the bulls off guard.

BCH/USD

Bitcoin Cash (BCH) celebrated its second birthday on Aug. 1 and ended up as the fourth-best performer of the week. Can the rally continue?

BCH/USD

The BCH/USD pair is rising inside an ascending channel. It remains in an uptrend as long as it stays inside the channel. The bulls will now try to push the price towards the resistance line of the channel. A breakout of the channel will result in a sharp upward move. The traders can initiate positions as suggested in our earlier analysis.

Contrary to our assumption, if the pair turns down and plummets below the channel, it can plummet to $227.70 and below it to $166.25. Both moving averages have flattened out and the RSI is close to the midpoint, which points to a probable consolidation for a few weeks.

XMR/USD

Monero (XMR) rounded up the list with gains of just over 8%. Can the cryptocurrency extend its gains in the coming weeks? Let’s have a look at its chart.

XMR/USD

The bears broke below the support at $81.4151 in the past week, but could not capitalize on the breakdown. The XMR/USD pair has quickly bounced back above the level, which shows demand at lower levels. Both moving averages have flattened out and the RSI is just above 50, which points to a range-bound action for a few weeks.

If the price breaks out of $90.4999, it can rally to $107 and above it to $120. The traders can buy if the price closes (UTC time frame) above $90.4999 for a day and keep a stop loss of $71. The stops can be raised to breakeven as the pair reaches $107.

Contrary to our expectation, if the cryptocurrency reverses direction and plunges below $71, it will be a negative sign. Such a move can drag it lower to $60.

Market data is provided by the HitBTC exchange.

Q2 2019 XRP Markets Report 16142

Ripple

Ripple publishes the quarterly XRP Markets Report to provide regular updates on the state of the market, including quarterly programmatic and institutional strategy and sales, relevant XRP-related announcements such as Xpring and RippleNet partnerships, and commentary on previous quarter market developments. As an owner of XRP, Ripple believes in proactive transparency and in being a responsible stakeholder. Ripple urges others in the industry to follow its lead to build trust, foster open communication, and raise the bar industry-wide.

CHANGE IN VOLUME BENCHMARK

In June 2019, Ripple shared that the company’s sales of XRP in Q2 2019 would be lower as a percentage of reported volume than in the previous quarters due to the concerns about misreported, falsified and inflated reported trading volumes.

Ripple worked with trusted partners to evaluate new sources of legitimate trading volume. After evaluation, Ripple decided CryptoCompare’s Top Tier (CCTT), the exchanges rated “AA,” “A,” and “B” by its Exchange Benchmark, offers a more complete look on the quality, regulatory environment, management, and structure of exchanges that filter out a majority of unverified volumes. Publicly available sources of trusted trading volume are still in relatively early stages, but CCTT is in line with what Ripple believes to be more accurate XRP trading volumes. For now, Ripple will use CCTT as its benchmark, and will continue to work proactively with industry participants toward resolving the issues around unreliable industry volume data.

Q2 HIGHLIGHTS

  • Overall market capitalization of digital assets sharply increased in Q2.
  • Ripple sold $251.51 million XRP in Q2 2019 and is substantially reducing future sales of XRP.
  • Given the concerns about overstated market trading volumes, CryptoCompare will be Ripple’s primary benchmark for XRP market volume going forward.
  • Three billion XRP were released out of cryptographic escrow, 2.10 billion returned to escrow.
  • XRP is now listed on over 130 exchanges worldwide.
*data from coinmarketcap.com; **data from CryptoCompare Top Tier

Q2 AND FUTURE XRP SALES

Q2 Sales
In Q2 2019, Ripple sold $106.87 million XRP in institutional direct sales and $144.64 million in programmatic sales. In total, the company sold $251.51 million XRP in Q2. Given the reports of inflated volumes, which Ripple took seriously, the company temporarily paused programmatic sales and placed limits on institutional sales to evaluate the problem in early Q2. Ripple later resumed XRP sales at a rate that was 50% lower versus previous guidance, at 10 basis points of CoinMarketCap reported volumes.

Future Sales
Ripple plans to take a more conservative approach to XRP sales in Q3. As noted, the company switched benchmarks to CCTT and will target programmatic sales at 10 basis points of CCTT reported volumes.

INSTITUTIONAL VS. PROGRAMMATIC SALES

Institutional (OTC) Sales
Ripple’s long-term view is that efficient, liquid XRP markets should resemble the traditional FX markets, given XRP’s use case of global value transfer. As a large portion of FX trading occurs on the OTC markets, in 2017, Ripple began providing, through XRP II, a licensed subsidiary, OTC purchases of XRP to meet institutional demand, at a time when XRP/USD liquidity was limited. Since then, XRP listings increased as Ripple has partnered with the top digital asset brokers and used inventory to serve as a backstop for XRP liquidity. This allowed these OTC liquidity providers the ability to source XRP, even when institutional quantities of XRP were difficult to access across exchanges.

Ripple decided to pull back from providing XRP over-the-counter at scale toward the end of Q2, in light of the OTC desks’ ability to source institutional demand for XRP in the open markets. Going forward, Ripple plans to focus institutional sales on markets where the on-exchange liquidity for XRP is insufficient to meet institutional demand.

Programmatic Sales
Ripple’s programmatic XRP sales have been done with the goal of minimizing market impact. The company did this through limiting XRP programmatic sales to what it considers a small percentage of traded volume, which was executed across multiple exchanges. Ripple relies on programmatic sales partners who mainly execute trades passively; their trading volumes do not vary based on changes in the price of XRP, but they do increase as overall XRP trading volumes increase.

As discussed earlier, because of misreported trading volumes, Ripple has changed its sales strategy and benchmark for Q3, and will continue to closely monitor the situation.

Q2 ESCROW ACTIVITY

In Q2 2019, three billion XRP were again released out of escrow (one billion each month). 2.10 billion XRP were returned and subsequently put into new escrow contracts. The remaining 900 million XRP not returned to escrow are being used in a variety of ways to develop use cases for XRP, including Xpring initiatives and RippleNet partnerships (such as MoneyGram). All figures are reported based on transactions executed during the quarter.

XRP COMMENTARY

The overall market capitalization of digital assets increased by 122.86% from Q1. XRP price gained 28.20% over Q2, ending the quarter at $0.40 on coinmarketcap.com

Volume
According to CCTT, the daily volume for XRP increased in Q2. The average daily volume was $429.51 million in Q2 and $156.01 million in Q1.

For reference, according to coinmarketcap.com, the average XRP daily volume was $1.74 billion.

Volatility and Correlation
XRP’s volatility of daily returns over the quarter was 5.01%. Though there was a slight increase in volatility from Q1, XRP was in line with other top digital assets. In addition, XRP’s correlation with bitcoin dropped from Q1, while its correlation with ether remained high.

Exchanges
In Q2, 12 new exchanges listed XRP bringing the total number to over 130 exchanges worldwide.

RIPPLENET

Q2 saw the highest number of customer transactions on RippleNet. In fact, the number of xRapid transactions increased 170% from Q1 to Q2 and Ripple had a 30% increase in the number of live xRapid partners in Q2. Ripple anticipates this momentum in transaction volume to continue as more partners and customers go live.

Notably in Q2, Ripple announced it agreed to enter into a strategic partnership with MoneyGram (NASDAQ: MGI), one of the world’s largest money transfer companies. The company operates in the $600 billion global remittance market, serving millions of customers in more than 200 countries and territories, supporting multiple currencies. Through this partnership, which will have an initial term of two years, Ripple would become MoneyGram’s key partner for cross-border payments and foreign exchange settlement using digital assets. In conjunction with the partnership, Ripple has agreed to provide a capital commitment to MoneyGram, which enables the company to draw up to $50 million in exchange for equity over a two-year period.

The partnership with Ripple focuses on the xRapid product. xRapid is a solution for on-demand liquidity, which leverages XRP, the native digital asset of the XRP Ledger, as a real-time bridge between the sending and receiving currencies.

XPRING 

Xpring is Ripple’s initiative to support the open source community of developers, building on the decentralized XRP Ledger and use cases for XRP on that ledger. This support is done in two ways: 1) helping innovative blockchain projects grow through partnership and investment; 2) building crypto infrastructure through contributions to open source crypto protocols such as the XRP Ledger and Interledger projects. In addition, Xpring is building a developer platform to support open source developers to leverage these protocols. Xpring makes investments using a mix of traditional currency and XRP.  XRP investments are generally subject to sales restrictions and intended for direct use in the tools and services being developed.

Companies and developers continued to build on the XRP Ledger, and utilize ILP and XRP. Significant developments from companies and projects, which Xpring invested in and supports, include:

  • Bolt Labs is a privacy-focused payment channel network supporting multiple digital currencies. Bolt scales off-chain transactions while preserving privacy.
  • Agoric enables developers to build secure smart contracts and new digital assets that can connect to public and private blockchains.
  • Robot Ventures is a (pre-)seed investor in early stage companies in the decentralized finance and blockchain space.

MARKET COMMENTARY

Notable Regulatory Activity

  • The SEC announced that it would establish nodes on certain open source, permissionless ledgers, such as the XRP Ledger, to help inform its policy making.
  • The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority analogized XRP to ETH, which it recognized was a hybrid utility/exchange token, not a security token.

Technology companies enter the space
New entrants into the ecosystem brought global awareness around crypto and blockchain. Most notably, Facebook’s announcement of the Libra whitepaper in June brought mainstream attention from all audiences. Akin to JP Morgan’s announcement of its JPM Coin trial, the news brought market validation to the space, highlighting the benefits that blockchain and crypto bring to payments. However, Facebook faced significant regulatory headwinds as regulators questioned the company’s ability to protect consumer data and comply with anti-money laundering and know-your-customer laws. Facebook was not the only tech company that announced it was breaking into crypto and blockchain this quarter:

  • Amazon was granted a patent to build a proof-of-work cryptographic system to fight DDOS attacks. Also, Amazon Web Services launched its Managed Blockchain service, which supports open-source framework Hyperledger Fabric, for its enterprise clients.
  • Yahoo! Japan went live with Taotao, its cryptocurrency exchange, where bitcoin and ether will be initially traded, and margin trading of XRP and litecoin will be available.
  • Google announced that Ethereum app builders using Google software will be able to integrate data from sources outside the blockchain through a partnership with Chainlink.
  • Samsung announced the development of its own Ethereum-based blockchain and may issue its own token.

Increased Institutional Interest 
Digital assets experienced increasing levels of institutional interest over the past three months. Last quarter, futures trading and other crypto derivatives were widely discussed as the market capitalization of digital assets increased, CME reached a record high for BTC futures and Bakktannounced plans to begin testing its future contracts.

Banks continue to bet on crypto and blockchain 
Established banks continued to show interest in blockchain and crypto as they build their own private blockchain solutions and tokens. Last quarter, a group of 14 financial firms led by UBS including Barclays, Santander, and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce created Fnality International to aid in the development and launch of a utility settlement coin (USC) to improve cross-border payments. JPMorgan announced that it will start customer trials of its JPM Coin with corporate clients, and Goldman Sachs CEO said the bank is doing extensive research on asset tokenization and stablecoins.

Crypto exchanges reported record trading volumes and profit. Traditional brokerage firms plan to offer cryptocurrency trading to their institutional clients.

ADDITIONAL REGULATORY HIGHLIGHTS IN Q2

Americas and Europe

  • The G20 officially announced its support of the FATF’s crypto guidelines and ongoing work by the Financial Stability Board (FSB) to explore the implications of decentralized fintech and how regulators can better engage stakeholders.
  • SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce said current guidance falls short of clarity that the industry needs to move forward to develop additional guidelines regarding crypto.
  • France pushed for the EU to adopt a cryptocurrency framework to achieve uniform laws.
  • Bitstamp was granted a virtual currency license by the New York Department of Financial Services.
  • The SEC sued Kik for allegedly running an unregistered securities sale back in 2017 when it launched an ICO for its kin token.
  • The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority is consulting on a potential ban on the sale of crypto derivatives to retail investors.

APAC

  • Reserve Bank of India considered a law that mandates payments data should not be allowed to leave its borders, and announced a framework for its fintech sandbox that invites blockchain projects to take part, but excludes cryptocurrency-related businesses.
  • Nepal banned AliPay and WeChat Pay, citing they are not registered as official payment systems.
  • Japan’s lower and upper houses passed new crypto regulation in National Diet (Japan’s bicameral legislature) to strengthen local regulations and cryptocurrency trading practices.

South America

  • Brazil established a new commission to consider crypto regulation in the country. The commission will be composed of 34 members in accordance with the House Rules of Procedure. Also, the country’s major financial authorities announced a regulatory sandbox for blockchain, fintech and crypto.
  • The Chilean government introduced a bill on cryptocurrencies for congress.

Middle East and Africa

  • Egypt lifted its ban, and will allow licensed cryptocurrency companies.
  • Pakistan Central Bank announced its intention to launch a digital currency by 2025, in an effort to go fully digital by 2030.

CONCLUSION

Q2 was marked by increased regulatory activity, landmark partnerships and high profile announcements from new entrants and key industry players. These activities underscore the continued maturation of the blockchain and crypto markets. In addition, Ripple has taken proactive steps to address the issues of inflated volumes by reducing future XRP sales and changing its volume benchmark.

If interested, please find the Q1 2019 XRP Markets Report here.

Libra Launch Won’t Happen Until Regulators are Happy: Coeure 16077

Libra

Global regulators will not let Facebook launch its Libra currency until all their concerns, ranging from money laundering to financial stability, have been addressed and “a prolonged discussion” may be needed first, the man in charge of their response told Reuters. Facebook announced Libra — a new digital coin backed by four official currencies and available to billions of social network users around the world — a month ago, adding that it was hoping to launch as soon as next year.

Benoit Coeure, the European Central Bank board member who chairs an international working group on Libra, said Facebook’s global reach meant the cryptocurrency had to be safe “from day one” for its users, the financial system and authorities fighting crime.

“You’ve got to be safe, robust and resilient from day one,” Coeure said in an interview on the sidelines of a Group of Seven meeting in Chantilly, France. “It’s not a learning process: either it works or it doesn’t.”

Regulators fear Libra, which in its original design would let users transfer money using a pseudonym, may be used to launder money or finance terrorism. They also want to know what safeguards Facebook and the other 27 members of the Libra Association have in place to ensure they could withstand a run on reserves and that users’ privacy and ownership rights are protected.

This may involve a “prolonged discussion” among regulators on how to change existing national and international rules to cover Libra, Coeure said.

“Down the road we might find that there are gaps or inconsistencies that would require a prolonged discussion by regulators on how to do it differently,” he said.

“Authorities are not going to let any such projects happen before we have answers to our questions and before we have the right regulatory framework.”

Cryptocurrencies are subject to patchy rules across the world, with the technology remaining mostly unregulated. While some smaller countries, from Belarus to Malta, have brought in specific laws, major economies have tended to apply existing financial rules.

Coeure said his G7 working group on stablecoins will work on the matter until the International Monetary Fund’s annual meeting in October, when it will hand it over to the Financial Stability Board of global financial regulators. Facebook said earlier this week it would not proceed with the launch of Libra until regulatory concerns are addressed.

BSV, XTZ, TRX, LTC, ATOM and OKB 15298

BSV

BSV/USD

The Bitcoin SV (BSV) network will complete the Quasar upgrade on July 24, which will increase the default block size hard cap from 128MB to 2GB. After a few months of the upgrade, the cryptocurrency will be able to handle thousands of transactions every second. DRIVE Markets has launched trading in Bitcoin SV. Backed by these positive news, the digital currency has turned out as the top performer among major cryptocurrencies. It has rallied close to 25% in the past seven days. Can it continue its up move or will it witness profit booking at higher levels? Let’s analyze the chart.

BSV/USD

The BSV/USD pair broke below the 61.8% Fibonacci retracement level of the rally this week, but lower levels saw sharp buying that has propelled the price right back up. This is a positive sign as it confirms demand at lower levels. The price can now reach $214.210 and above it $255.620. If the bulls propel the price to a new high, the uptrend will continue.

However, after forming large ranges in the past two weeks, we expect the volatility to cool down and the pair to enter a consolidation for a few weeks. The pair will turn negative if the price turns around from one of the overhead resistances and plummets below $107. Nonetheless, we give it a low probability of occurring.

XTZ/USD

Tezos (XTZ) is the second-best performer of the past seven days, rising close to 20%. Can it build on its momentum and start a new uptrend? Let’s see the chart.

XTZ/USD

The XTZ/USD pair is largely range-bound between $0.33 and $1.85. For the past three weeks, the bulls have managed to defend $0.902128, which is the 61.8% Fibonacci retracement of the recent rally. The bulls have not been able to push the price above $1.295480, which shows profit-booking at higher levels. Both moving averages are flat and the RSI is close to 50, which suggests that the digital currency might consolidate for a few more weeks.

If the pair breaks out of $1.295480, it can rally to $1.85. A breakout of $1.85 will start a new uptrend that has a long-term target objective of $3.37. Therefore, traders can buy on a close (UTC time frame) above $1.295480 and keep a stop loss of $0.80.

Our bullish view will be invalidated if the price reverses direction from $1.295480 and plummets below $0.829651. If that happens, a drop to $0.33 is probable.

TRX/USD

Tron (TRX) CEO Justin Sun tweeted that something big will happen next week along with the Warren Buffet lunch. Sun has invited influential people in the crypto universe to join him for the power lunch with the legendary investor. The crypto community has kept its fingers crossed on the outcome of the meeting.

TRX/USD

The TRX/USD pair had broken down of the channel last week. Though bears broke below the critical support of $0.022 during the week, they could not sustain the price at lower levels. Aggressive buying has propelled the price back into the channel. This is a positive sign.

There is a minor resistance at the downtrend line above which the pair can move up to $0.040. A breakout of this resistance can push the price to $0.050. The traders can wait for the price to scale above the downtrend line before buying. The stop loss can be kept at $0.020 because if this support gives way, a drop to $0.017740 and below it a retest of the yearly low is probable.

LTC/USD

Litecoin (LTC) was recently named as the official cryptocurrency of the Miami Dolphins. This will increase the visibility of the cryptocurrency among NFL fans. With halving just a few days away, can the price resume its uptrend or will it remain range-bound? Let’s find out.

LTC/USD

After failing to break out of the ascending channel a few weeks ago, the LTC/USD pair plummeted below the channel last week. The bears followed it up with a breakdown of the support at $83.65. However, they could not sustain the lower levels and the price has quickly bounced back. This shows strong demand at lower levels.

Currently, the bulls are facing resistance at the channel line. This line, which had previously acted as a support is likely to act as a resistance. Nevertheless, if the price climbs back into the channel, it will be a positive sign. The next level to watch on the upside is $140.3450. Therefore, traders can wait for the price to re-enter the channel and sustain it before buying. The stop loss can be kept at the recent lows of $76.

Our bullish view will be invalidated if the price turns down from the channel and plunges below $76. In such a case, a drop to $58 is probable.

ATOM/USD

Cosmos (ATOM) rallied close to 5% in the past seven days. Is this the start of a new uptrend or is this only a pullback in a downtrend. Let’s study the chart.

ATOM/USD

Due to a short trading history, we are analyzing the daily charts for the ATOM/USD pair. The pair has given up a lot of ground in the recent correction. It is currently attempting to bounce off the $3.6043–$3.4101 support zone.

The pullback is likely to face resistance at the 20-day EMA. The next fall towards the support zone will give us a better idea whether the bottom is in place. If the price breaks below $3.4101 during the next fall, it can retest the lows at $2.9277.

Conversely, if the pair rebounds off the support zone and breaks out of the 20-day EMA, it is likely to reach the 50-day SMA and above it $6.15. Therefore, traders can watch the price action during the next fall and buy on a breakout above 20-day EMA. The stops can be placed below $3.40.

OKB/USD*

OKB is the native token of OKEx, a world-leading cryptocurrency exchange. It is trading well above its listing price. The token offers its users opportunities to set up OKEx partner exchanges, settle trading fees and subscribe to new tokens sale on the OK jumpstart platform.

The total supply of OKB is 1 billion, out of which only 300 million is in circulation and the rest has been locked up until 2022. The long-term hodlers of the token will benefit from the OKB Buy-Back & Burn Program, which will be run every 3 months. Currently, the token is operating on the ERC-20 protocol but will soon migrate to the OKChain mainnet – being developed by OKEx — which is in its final stages of testing.

In its evaluation report, Shinobi Capital, an established blockchain and cryptocurrency advisory firm, expects OKB to benefit from the development of OKChain mainnet and better market conditions for cryptocurrencies. They expect OKB to hit a market capitalization of about $7.068 billion by 2020.

OKB has been listed on Bitfinex and is attempting to partner with other exchanges to further expand the ecosystem. At press time, the token is ranked 1,878 on CoinMarketCap with a 24-hour volume of $142,547,972. So, is this a good opportunity to scoop OKB before prices shoot up? Let’s look at the technical picture.

OKB/USD

The OKB/USD pair hit a high of $6.68 on May 18, 2018, and from there, it lost a lot of ground during the crushing bear market and fell to a low of $0.5718 on January 13, 2019. However, it participated in the recovery and rose to a high of $2.5566 on April 3. That is a 347% gain within three months.

Thereafter, the pullback found support at the 61.8% Fibonacci retracement level of the up-move. It consolidated between $1.30 and $1.829 for a few days before breaking out. It again got stuck in the $1.55–$2.09 range for a few days.

Currently, the price has broken out of the range and is likely to move up to $2.5566, which will act as a stiff resistance. If this level is scaled, the price can move up to $4 and above it to $5.40. Both moving averages are gradually sloping up, which suggests that bulls have the upper hand.

However, if bears defend $2.5566, the digital currency might remain range-bound between $2.09 and $2.5566 for a few days. It will lose momentum on a break below the 50-day SMA and will turn negative on a breakdown of $1.2616.

*Disclaimer: OKB is a featured cryptocurrency from one of Cointelegraph’s sponsors, and its inclusion did not affect this price analysis.

The market data is provided by the HitBTC exchange. 

Coinbase Launch Trading Signals 15882

Trading Signals

Trading signals are up-to-date, trusted, exclusive data only available on Coinbase.com and are meant to help our customers independently create and manage their own crypto strategy. Our goal is to provide accurate, objective measurements of cryptocurrency usage based on the aggregated and anonymized activity of millions of Coinbase customers. These insights are only available to customers signed in to Coinbase — and they are the first of their kind in crypto.

These new signals, which are in addition to the typical market data we already provide, will power a deeper understanding and comparison of cryptocurrencies and their communities so Coinbase customers can think beyond price when building their crypto portfolio.

Trading signal: Top holder activity

What it is: The top holder activity signal is the percentage of Coinbase customers with large balances of an asset (top 10%) who have net increased (bought) or decreased (sold) their positions in that asset through trading over the last 24 hours. This is updated approximately every 2 hours.

Why it’s important: While we can’t predict what crypto prices will do, we can tell you how the largest holders have recently traded with the top holder activity signal.

Trading signals: Typical hold time & Popularity on Coinbase

What they are: The typical hold time signal is the median number of days an asset stays in a Coinbase customer’s account or vault before it’s sold or sent to another address or wallet. The popularity on Coinbase signal is a ranking (out of all tradable assets) of how many customers hold a particular cryptocurrency. These signals are updated approximately every 24 hours.

Why they’re important: For those customers who want to better understand what the average Coinbase customer does, we’re providing data on hold times and popularity. Keep in mind that Coinbase has a wide diversity of customers, with a variety of factors driving their asset hold times and which assets they find interesting.

Trading signal: Price correlation

What it is: The price correlation signal measures how cryptocurrency prices have moved in relation to each other. This is updated approximately every 24 hours.

High positive correlation means those assets’ prices have tended to move in the same direction. High negative correlation means those assets’ prices have tended to move in the opposite direction. Low or no correlation (around 0%) means the assets’ prices haven’t tended to be related.

Why it’s important: Price correlations can help you assess the historical diversity of your portfolio and assess potential risk exposure. For example, if you want to increase your exposure to potential BTC-related price movements, you could buy cryptocurrencies that are highly correlated to BTC. And if you wanted to hedge your bets against BTC-related price movements, you could buy crypto with a high negative correlation. Further, you could make uncorrelated bets with a crypto that has no relationship with BTC.

Keep in mind that regardless of the data, price correlations are historical and not predictive of future correlations.

When considering these trading signals and other market data provided by Coinbase, please keep in mind that they are not and should not be considered investment advice, which Coinbase does not provide. Always make your own independent assessment of whether any particular investment or investment strategy is right for you, your risk tolerance, and financial means, before entering into a transaction. When in doubt, consult with a financial professional.

We think trading signals, backed by verified transactional data, are an important step to raising the level of trust in the cryptoeconomy. Coinbase customers can now use these signals to suit their needs.

Facebook Official Responds to Maxine Waters on Cryptocurrency Project 11804

Facebook Libra

David Marcus, the head of Facebook’s new cryptocurrency project, Libra, assured Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) that the company is “taking the time to do this right” after a group of Democratic lawmakers, including Waters, called for Facebook to halt its plans.

In a letter to Waters and other top members of the House Financial Services Committee, Marcus defended Libra’s mission and vowed to answer policymakers’ “important questions,” according to a copy of the letter obtained by The Hill on Tuesday ahead of planned hearings on the issue.

“I want to give you my personal assurance that we are committed to taking the time to do this right,” Marcus wrote.

The letter, dated July 3, is addressed to the group of Democratic lawmakers who last week called for a moratorium on Facebook’s Libra project. The House Financial Services Committee members, including Democratic Reps. Carolyn Maloney (N.Y.), Wm. Lacy Clay (Mo.), Al Green (Texas) and Stephen Lynch (Mass.) as well as Waters, panned Facebook’s history of privacy scandals and the potential for its new cryptocurrency to attract hackers.

Their letter called for Facebook to “cease implementation plans until regulators and Congress have an opportunity to examine these issues and take action,” saying a failure to do so “risks a new Swiss-based financial system that is too big to fail.”

In response to the group of critics, Marcus wrote, “We understand that big ideas take time, that policymakers and others are raising important questions, and that we can’t do this alone.”

“We want, and need, governments, central banks, regulators, non-profits, and other stakeholders at the table and value all of the feedback we have received,” he wrote.

Capitol Hill has responded to Facebook’s new cryptocurrency project with widespread skepticism and sharp pushback as lawmakers have said they are wary of the embattled company with billions of users launching its own currency.

A coalition of consumer groups quickly backed the calls for a moratorium, claiming the U.S. regulatory system is not prepared to take on such an expansive cryptocurrency project.

Waters, the chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, has offered some of the most scathing feedback.

“With the announcement that it plans to create a cryptocurrency, Facebook is continuing its unchecked expansion and extending its reach into the lives of its users,” Waters said in the statement, hitting Facebook over its alleged violation of consumer protection laws and ongoing data privacy controversies.

In the letter, Marcus noted that the Libra Association — the Switzerland-based nonprofit that will operate the cryptocurrency — released its plans early in order to field questions and concerns from policymakers. Facebook says it will only be one member of the Libra Association, meaning the company will not retain singular control over the digital currency.

Libra is backed by dozens of powerful businesses, including Mastercard and Uber, and is slated to launch next year. Libra has branded itself as an effort to aid the “unbanked,” the estimated 1.7 billion people who do not have access to traditional banking.