Bitcoin Association’s Bitcoin SV Hackathon Finalists Announced in Lead Up to CoinGeek Toronto Conference 6494

Bitcoin SV

Bitcoin Association, the leading global organization for Bitcoin business, has held the first ever Bitcoin SV (BSV) Hackathon. The first phase of competition was a virtual hackathon that took place globally over the weekend of May 4-5 with 122 individual competitors, plus another 94 joining together to form 42 teams. Their challenge was to develop a solution for BSV on-boarding issues, extending beyond on-boarding new users to the challenge of also on-boarding new developers to BSV.

The quality of entries was so high that the judges named 14, rather than the originally expected 10, semi-finalists. Now the entries have been narrowed to three top finalists. A representative of each finalist team will be flown to Toronto for the ultimate judging and awarding of 400 BSV coins (currently valued over $27,000) at the CoinGeek Toronto conference on May 30. All finalists will also have the opportunity to be considered for investment by CoinGeek founder Calvin Ayre, the technology entrepreneur. The finalists will be judged by four expert judges plus a vote by the entire conference audience, expected to be more than 250 global cryptocurrency elites. The winner will be announced at the conference’s end with 1st place winning 250 BSV, 2nd place 100 BSV, and 3rd place 50 BSV.

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Bitcoin Surging Above 4,200 Will Mark the End of the Bear Market 3353

Bitcoin (BTC) has once again been able to extend its winning streak and is now tepidly approaching its next resistance level of $4,100. This resistance level has proven to be quite strong over the past several weeks, and it will likely require a massive surge in buying pressure to propel the cryptocurrency above this level.

If Bitcoin is able to break above $4,100, its next level of resistance will lie at $4,200, which one analyst believes would mark the end of the bear market, assuming this price level is broken above.

Bitcoin (BTC) on a Slow Climb Towards $4,100

At the time of writing, Bitcoin is trading up nominally at its current price of $4,095, just a hair under its next resistance level of $4,100. Over the past month, BTC has failed on multiple occasions to break above this price level, and it is unclear if it currently has enough buying pressure backing it to break above this level today or during the coming weekend.

Although BTC’s current price action does look positive, analysts are quick to point out that the bears still have some ammunition to push the cryptocurrency back into the $3,000 region.

Josh Rager, a popular cryptocurrency analyst on Twitter, reaffirmed that he believes it is likely that BTC will drop back towards $3,500 before finding strong buying pressure.

Although there are not a ton of reasons for crypto bulls to get too excited just yet, one analyst is pointing out that a break above $4,200 would technically mean that the persisting Bitcoin bear trend is over.

Alex Krüger, an economist who focuses primarily on cryptocurrencies, spoke about this possibility in a recent tweet, explaining that the bear market has technically been over for a few months, but that the bear trend that is still persisting may soon be over.

“The crypto bear market has been over for three months now. $BTC breaking above 4200 will mark the end of the bear trend that started in January 2018. Going to miss this big fellow,” he explained.

Bitcoin has historically experienced larger bouts of volatility during weekend trading sessions due to the lower-than-typical trading volume, which means that the current status of the bear trend may be discovered as soon as this weekend.

Canadian Oil Companies are Mining Bitcoin: the Next Big Trend? 2968

Mining for Bitcoin is a unique and modern twist on what has typically been a traditionally non-digital activity that has powered economic growth around the world for centuries – oil mining.

Although mining for oil and mining for Bitcoin share few similarities beyond the principle concept, a unique system in place at a Canadian oil field creates an unlikely partnership that essentially generates Bitcoin as a byproduct of oil.

Natural Gas to Power Bitcoin Mining Operations 

The operators of a large oil field in Canada are cashing out on the cryptocurrency phenomenon by using the wasted natural gas that results from mining petroleum to power a Bitcoin mining operation.

On the oil field, large shipping containers sit side-by-side with oil derricks and other oil-related industrial machinery, forming a symbiotic relationship in which the natural gas that results from the mining operation is directed into a electricity generator that powers a decent sized Bitcoin mining operation.

By utilizing the natural gas, rather than flaring it as many oil fields do, the company is able to offset their operational costs by profitably employing a byproduct of oil mining that is typically wasted.

Natural gas prices have plummeted over the past few years, and the market supply is so high that there are very few ways to utilize it in a way that is profitable, but using it to generate electricity to mine cryptocurrency may become its next big use case.

As first reported by the Wall Street Journal, Stephen Barbour – a consultant that works with oil companies to lower their operational costs –  is the mastermind behind this clever utilization of natural gas, and claims that the idea came to him after reading about the potential profitability of mining Bitcoin.

“I knew about all the wasted energy that goes on… Reading about bitcoin mining and how it could monetize energy through the internet, I just thought that was unbelievable,” he said.

More Benefits Than Just Bitcoin Profits

Ryan Wartman, a production foreman for Black Pearl Resources – the company that owns and operates the aforementioned mining field in Canada – told the Wall Street Journal that by directing that natural gas into the crypto mining machine, they are also able to reduce their gas output to below government regulation, which allows them to mine more oil.

“It was the best option for us… We’re using it to bring ourselves below the government-regulated amount that we can vent on location and keep producing oil,” Wartman explained, noting that they are able to keep the oil well operating 24 hours per day by directing the natural gas output into the crypto mining rigs.

Because the price of Bitcoin is just slightly above its 2018 lows, and crypto mining profitability has plummeted over the past year, the key component to a profitable mining operation is cheap energy, and it doesn’t get much cheaper than using a resource that would otherwise be wasted.

Furthermore, by reducing the oil field’s natural gas output, they are able to keep their wells running for longer periods of time than would otherwise be allowed, which leads to a larger oil output.

Because this unlikely marriage between oil wells and Bitcoin mining rigs is proving to be highly profitable, it is likely that other fields will begin adopting a similar system.

Crypto Prices May Be Down, But Industry Fundamentals Are Healthier Than Ever 2657

The cryptocurrency market has been through the wringer over the past 15 months. The prices of most altcoins have plummeted by 90% or more from their all-time highs, and the king of crypto itself, Bitcoin, has declined as much as 85% as well.

But despite prices being far lower than they once were, the health of the industry itself is only getting stronger fundamentally, according to one cryptocurrency analysis firm.

Boston-Based Data Firm Reveals Crypto Industry Is Healthier Than Ever

While sentiment around the cryptocurrency market is still extremely bearish – and rightfully so considering the severity of the current bear market –the market is showing signs of maturing, and undeterred developers and users of top cryptocurrencies have continued to chug along.

The result is an industry that is a lot healthier than prices may reflect, according to Boston-based crypto analytics firm Flipside Crypto. The cryptocurrency number-crunching company has released what it calls the FCAS25 – an index that tracks the overall health of the crypto industry over time, using key metrics such as user activity, developer behavior, and market maturity.

According to Flipside Crypto’s FCAS25, which is based on a “time-weight moving average” of 25 individual cryptocurrencies, the market health is far stronger now than it was one year ago, and is ten points shy of its previous all-time high.

The Coinbase Ventures-backed Flipside Crypto says that market maturity, one of the three key factors it uses to determine industry health, has actually fallen since the 2017 peak of the bull run. Since market maturity is tied to “conventional understanding and public perception of the crypto-asset space,” it is reasonable that it has declined ever since the media storm of 2017 that sent Bitcoin into the stratosphere and made it a household name.

Developer behavior has stayed relatively consistent, “gradually increasing among the Flipside 25 over the course of the last 2 years.” Flipside says that this demonstrates a “healthy commitment among the teams supporting the ongoing improvements to the top crypto projects.”

User activity, has only grown significantly among “top projects,” the firm says. “This leads us to believe that while investor interest has perhaps waned since early 2018, the top projects have successfully increased on-chain traffic and utilization of their projects; a sign of underlying fundamental health.”

Flipside crypto calls their FCAS25 “a single, consistently comparable value for measuring cryptocurrency project health.” The formula uses a list of cryptocurrency projects that ebbs and flows based on their fundamental health. Together, they’re weighted to determine the overall health of the entire industry. The crypto industry, says Dave Balter, CEO of Flipside Crypto, is “humming.”

“When cryptocurrency prices are down, everyone worries about industry health,” he explained. “But price is a poor indicator for whether cryptocurrency projects and platforms are gaining customers or delivering product to the market.  We developed the FCAS25 to provide clarity into the fundamental health of cryptocurrency organizations, that isn’t reflected in price.  The data proves the cryptocurrency industry is far from over.  As a matter of fact, it’s humming.”

Next Bitcoin Halving is Attractive for Investors, Says Top Asset Manager 2593

Now is the right time for investors to create their core strategic positions in bitcoin, says a top asset management firm.

New York-based Greyscale Investments, backed by Barry Silbert’s Digital Currency Group, published an evaluative report detailing the historical correlation between bitcoin halving events and its price. The firm used those metrics to predict how the bitcoin price would react to the next halving event, which is going to take place on May 24 next year.

In retrospective, miners contribute computational power to confirm blocks on the Bitcoin network and add them to its public blockchain. The system automatically rewards them with newly issued bitcoin tokens. This reward, according to the Bitcoin’s original whitepaper, gets reduced by 50-percent every 210,000 blocks.

Since the Bitcoin network’s inception, there have been two such events: one in November 2012 and the other in July 2016. Each event reduced the bitcoin mining reward in half, thereby reducing the supply of BTC by half as well. Following the next bitcoin halving event, as mentioned above, the block rewards for miners will decrease from 12.5 BTC to 6.25 BTC.

Greyscale’s investment and research director, Matthew Beck, assessed that the upcoming halving could pose as an attractive entry point into bitcoin for investors, given they are ready to hold on to their investment over the years and have an appetite for high market risks. Excerpts from his report:

“For investors with a multi-year investment horizon and a high-risk tolerance, the confluence of discounted prices, improving network fundamentals, strong relative investment activity and the upcoming halving may offer an attractive entry point into Bitcoin. This is especially relevant for investors building core strategic positions in Bitcoin over time.”

The Fixed Supply Scenario

Looking through the historical bitcoin market reactions to halving, it became clear that the asset showed an upside momentum. In November 2013, for instance, BTC price surged from to $1,032, up 82.1-percent since the first halving. Similarly, a comparatively more excited bitcoin market experienced a 3x surge following the second halving event, jumping from $651 to $2,518 in just a year.

Beck noted that the next halving would reduce the number of daily minted BTC from 1,800 per day to 900 per day. Based on the bitcoin closing price as of March 15 (~$3,876), the dollar-denominated bitcoin supply would decrease from $7 million per day to $3.5 million per day.

That covers one part of the equation: the supply. Now comes the demand.

Demand Side Unfixed

Bitcoin suffered considerable losses in 2018 owing to both internal and external fundamental factors. It is clear that investors dumped the asset fearing extensive losses. It is also evident that a long bearish market takes a considerably longer time to recover. The US housing market is one clear example which, eleven years after the global financial crisis, is still attempting to improve.

Bitcoin’s silver lining is regulation and institutional adoption. Beck noted the same and presented it via its proprietary factor model (above). He wrote:

“Improving fundamentals have generally been the trend, though temporary declines are typical. After taking a brief dip in the first half of 2018, Bitcoin network activity has stabilized and is starting to show modest increases over the last few months. Notably in the twelve-to-eighteen-month periods preceding the past two BTC halvings, a similar decline and subsequent rise occurred.”

Nevertheless, the bitcoin demand side suffers from ultra-fluctuation due to its unregulated spot markets. There is still no metric that could assess how many people are entering or exiting BTC markets on any timeframe. That has made big investors to keep their capital away from BTC markets, for they fear price manipulation at large scale.

On the whole, the supply rate could be bullish for bitcoin if demand surpasses it. Institutions like Bakkt and Nasdaq are building an infrastructure to attract significant monies. Rest assured, the next bull run remains a prophecy waiting to be fulfilled.

Bitcoin Bears Back in Play, How Low Will BTC Go This Time? 2424

Following a week of inactivity crypto markets have started to move again today, but the direction is downwards. The Bitcoin bears have awoken and BTC started another plunge a few hours ago, the question now is how low will it go and where will 2019’s new low be.

Bitcoin Hits New 2019 Low

For the past seven days Bitcoin has been totally inert, bouncing off resistance at $3,600. A few hours ago this resistance turn support zone broke down and Bitcoin started another descent as Asian traders offloaded. Though not as sharp as previous plunges, BTC dropped over $150 or 3.5% in a couple of hours and is looking extremely bearish at the time of writing.

BTC is currently at its lowest level this year as it hit $3,470. The last time it dropped below $3,500 was in mid-December while recovering from a 2018 low of $3,200 on the 15th. Daily volume has increased to $5.7 billion but it is all going in the wrong direction as the Monday morning market dump accelerates.

BTC is likely to rally a little from $3,450 but further losses could be imminent and it could return to $3,200. Traders have taken to twitter urging BTC down in anticipation of loading up on it. Many expect a drop below $3,000 in the coming weeks and a number of observers and analysts have predicted prices as low as $2,000.

Prominent technical analyst Murad Mahmudov has predicted correctly on several previous occasions over the past year or so. His current prognosis for Bitcoin is not pretty with a final capitulation to $1,800 before any measurable recovery or trend reversal. The ride to the bottom may have just started as Bitcoin makes new lows for the year and heads towards $3,400.

Other analysts have called a $2,500 bottom by using fractals to measure repeating chart patterns. At the moment both scenarios look likely as the big red candles start appearing on the charts. The ever pessimistic JP Morgan recently released a report with the prediction that Bitcoin would dump to $1,250 if this bear market drags out any longer.

There is a common theme with all of these price predictions and that is more pain before any gain. The crypto winter is growing colder with a fresh spell of ice and snow this morning. Total market capitalization has dumped $7 billion in the past few hours as Bitcoin leads the downward charge.

Bitcoin (BTC) Holds Steady Around $3,600 as Altcoins Drift Downwards 2118

Following a quiet Saturday where the cryptocurrency markets saw relative levels of stability, the volatility has increased on Sunday, with Bitcoin (BTC) holding stable as most major altcoins drop slightly.

Earlier today, Bitcoin dropped towards $3,550 before quickly bouncing, which adds further support for the notion that BTC has a significant amount of buying support at this price level.

Bitcoin (BTC) Holds Steady Around $3,600

At the time of writing, Bitcoin is trading down nominally at its current price of $3,590. Over the past week, Bitcoin has been caught in a trading range between $3,550 and $3,650, and it has been unable to decisively break above or below either price level.

Earlier this morning, Bitcoin was pushed down to $3,550, the bottom of the aforementioned trading range, but was quickly propelled higher by the cryptocurrency’s bulls.

The Cryptomist, a popular cryptocurrency trader on Twitter, spoke about BTC’s price action earlier today, importantly noting that Bitcoin has been able to maintain higher lows since early-December.

“$BTC… Broke down support and bounced of a support that has held well since early December, thus maintaining higher lows… Strong lower wick suggest bulls are very much are present from 3470 region… Previous support on RSI candle now acting as resistance… Sig breakout before 1st feb,” she explained.

$BTC

Broke down support and bounced of a support that has held well since early December, thus maintaining higher lows
Strong lower wick suggest bulls are very much are present from 3470 region
Previous support on RSI candle now acting as resistance
Sig breakout before 1st feb pic.twitter.com/AT1ZMufDWZ

— The Cryptomist (@TheCryptomist) January 27, 2019

Although this sentiment is cautiously bullish, DonAlt, another popular cryptocurrency analyst, shared a more bearish sentiment in a recent tweet, noting that he believes a break below $3,000 appears to be more likely than a break above $4,000.

“A break of 3k seems more likely to me than a break of 4k currently. I don’t like altcoin pumps while BTC is sluggish. Hope I’m wrong,” he explained, referencing some small cap altcoins that have seen some decent price gains over the past few days.

A break of 3k seems more likely to me than a break of 4k currently.
I don’t like altcoin pumps while BTC is sluggish.
Hope I’m wrong.

— DonAlt (@CryptoDonAlt) January 26, 2019

Altcoins See Increased Volatility

Although Bitcoin has been able to hold steady around $3,600, most altcoins have dropped today as the crypto markets experience some typical Sunday volatility.

Most major cryptocurrencies have dropped today, despite Bitcoin’s current stability.

At the time of writing, Ethereum is trading down 1.7% at its current price of $115. Ethereum, like most major altcoins, has been closely tracking Bitcoin’s price action, and fell to lows of $113 earlier today before bouncing to its current price levels.

XRP has also dropped today and is trading down nearly 2% at its current price of $0.31. XRP has failed to experience any significant rally since it dropped earlier today, leaving it right above its weekly lows of just over $0.30.