Bitcoin Trading Intelligence: September 1st, 2015
Bitcoin in August
August has witnessed the rapid devaluation of Bitcoin, accelerated by fundamental data and augmented by technical glitches. The possible forking on the minds of the Bitcoin community, the repeated blows following the Mt Gox disaster and the effects of the BitLicense have cast a bearish shadow over the market which resulted in a month that managed to breach significant lows.
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Post the flash crash last week, the market has tested 200 and has been on a correction curve ever since. With many countries calling for increased regulation, let’s see how market emotions fared last week.
Nigeria’s central bank has called for Bitcoin regulation in order to stop money laundering and avoid international penalties. Dr. Okwu Nnanna the governor of the financial system at Nigeria’s Central Bank has cited that cryptocurrencies have no borders and hence are an easy channel for money laundering and thus there is a need to monitor them. AB 1236, a proposed California law to regulate virtual currencies has faced lot of opposition from industry lawyers.
It has now been amended saying companies that take ‘full custody’ of the currency are to be licensed and the bill is being backed by other major companies who are mostly made up of software developers. Another important country to look out for whose ecommerce demographic can play a pivotal role in the development of bitcoin system would be India.
With major companies like Microsoft and IBM backing bitcoin based startups, the Governor of RBI has made it clear that cryptocurrencies are being observed for now and would be regulated in the future.
The collapse of Mt Gox has racked up many controversies and the latest one, the arrest of Mark Karpeles, is over the issue of a fresh warrant for allegations that he has pocketed over $2.6 million from the company funds of Mt Gox. While Japan’s cryptocurrency scenario is restructuring for the best after the impact of Mt Gox, the Japanese Government has decided to regulate cryptocurrencies so as to avoid the risk of money laundering and terrorist funding.
How these coordinated regulations among different countries would affect/aid the growth and development of bitcoin is to be seen. While the ‘one-off’ depreciation of the Chinese Yuan has beaten the stock markets down in the USA and China, BTC China’s Greg Wolfson has remarked that the corresponding dip in prices in bitcoin is not devastating and in the times of uncertainty just like Gold, people are turning towards bitcoin as their safe haven.
The immediate correction after the dip is being seen as people hedge their positions in bitcoin.
Meanwhile on the Korean front, things are looking bright with a new exchange traded fund (ETF) tracking the value of bitcoin planned for launch on Korea Exchange next year.
This news coupled with Korean Bitcoin Exchange ‘Korbit’ announcing the launch of Bitwire, which allows people to send money using Bitcoin to any Korean bank account in less than two hours, the bitcoin ecosystem in Korea is trending towards a positive position.
On the European continent, the sentiment is consolidating with the launch of Mycelium Gear with Cashila’s API being integrated, this enables merchants to accept bitcoins that are automatically converted to Euros.
The financial crisis in Greece is here to stay for some time and bitcoin services providers like Cubit are trying to do what they can to help. Cubit in coordination with BTC-Greece is helping Greek citizens move their money out of the country to business partners and suppliers.
The aim is to try and work around the various capital controls that have been enforced in Greece in the hope that some private businesses can get back up and running once more. They have plans to install 1000 ATMS in order to make the this work. Even in the Black Sea Basin there are more than 13,600 locations where you can access bitcoin related stores, ATM and service providers.
On a corporate front, things have been picking up pace with Intel expressing its intention to unify the Internet of Things with bitcoin transactions. World Wide Web creator Tim-Berners-Lee leads the W3C to establish online payment standards, including Bitcoin, another sign of positive acceptance.
UBS’s Alex Batlin’s statements about Blockchain, saying that the technology will be an opportunity or threat to companies like UBS basing on how quick they act on it, has once again clarified that the technology is here to stay and is slowly gaining traction.
Patrick Byrne, the founder of Overstock.com, has acquired a broker-dealer firm built deep into the DNA of Wall Street. When the technology at the center of the acquisition is switched on, Byrne said, it will mark the first time the decentralized ledger behind bitcoin is plugged directly into Wall Street. This way it will be possible to bridge the gap between bitcoin technology and the blockchain.
With Coinbase reaching a valuation of $1 billion, it is listed as one of the top 50 tech startups in the USA. Fortifying their market share, they have launched services to purchase bitcoins through debit cards and credit cards and most recently launched in Canada.
While the service providing companies are doing well, the exchanges have taken a back step last week. The Bitfinex trade engine was blamed for the flash crash and many people experienced problems with exiting their positions during the crash, Australian Exchange, iGot, halted their trading activity and this has led to angst among its traders and customers.
So in conclusion, it is fair to say this past week of has seen lots turmoil in bitcoin trading with loads of negative factors contributing to the market sentiment bearish.
Long Term Technical Analysis
On a weekly scale, the market has tested its long term support level at 200 and retraced quickly to 227. The bearish arc of this swing was a strong move ranging over a month, driven by fundamental factors. The Bollinger bands in the weekly chart still remain parallel showing that the market is in bounds and judging by the regression lines, is setting up for a bull trend after consolidation.
On a long term scale, RSI is approaching oversold region while MACD just took a bearish turn crossing the signal line. Since the market is yet to consolidate, taking a long term position right as of now wouldn’t be feasible. Short term trades around 224 region with stop loss around the lows of previous week’s candle, targeting 5 SMA would be feasible. Long term trades can be planned on basis of consolidation. As soon as both Bollinger and 5 SMA become trending in the upward direction after significant consolidation, entering into trades with a long term plan would be profitable. Proper entry points for such trades would be around 220 region with stops below 217. With Market trending, possible exit points could be 266, 300 and 317.
If the market breaks out on the downside, breaking the support zone at 200, possible targets can be 157 and further drop in prices would seem likely.
Midterm Technical Analysis
In the daily chart, the support encountered around 217 region was breached and market has now found long term support at 200. With the Bollinger bands and SMA’s pointing downwards, the setup is going to remain bearish for some time until a base of consolidation is formed.
The descending triangle as shown in the daily chart between the downward trend line and support line at 200 might possibly see good number of volumes being traded in the coming days. In which direction the break out would be or the setup would change will depend on how the market approaches the vertex of the triangle.
If the Bollinger bands and short term SMA’s don’t straighten out or change direction, the break out might as well be in the downward direction, continuing the set trend. The MACD is about to cross the signal line and turn bullish, RSI has crossed 30 from the downside indicating impending bullishness in the market but when the bull run takes off is to be seen.
In the medium term, it appears that it is going to be bearish/sideways for some time. Shorting opportunities at the trend line and retracement trades with 5 SMA as support hold good potential.
Short term Technical Analysis
On a short term scale, the market has retraced over 220 levels and is expected to trade in this range for some time before either consolidating and going for a reversal or crashing down further more.
We can observe that 100 SMA is offering good support and market has not been able to go beyond 34 SMA. Picking longs over 100 SMA with 34 SMA as target would be a good short term trade. With the Bollinger bands and SMA’s still pointing downwards and higher time frame charts supporting, shorting around 34 SMA would be a good option.
The possible targets for such trades would be 100 SMA and if the market gets further trendy, a crash down back to 200 levels can also be expected, although these trades have to be done with tight stop loss. The MACD and RSI don’t give much indication as the market is sideways in the short term and retracing.
Sentiment Analysis Technical Analysis
This week saw a lot of action with countries announcing regulation moves and unveiling of technologies which ease bitcoin and blockchain adoption. While the sentiment was bearish majorly, let’s take a look at what happened in the market:
The Bank of England has announced that Bitcoin is ‘harder money’ than Gold because of Deflation. During a presentation on digital currencies, Andy Haldane, Chief Economist and the Executive Director of Monetary Analysis and Statistics of the Bank of England stated the above statement explaining that sustained adoption would see ongoing deflation.
An article from ibtimes has given a thorough analysis of how adopting blockchain technology to the existing banking system would be difficult and how Deutsche bank’s economist sees blockchain as a threat because of the lack of the IT infrastructure to support the technology involved.
On educational front, Stanford has joined NYU and Duke University in offering bitcoin course, Princeton has launched its own bitcoin course on Coursera, strengthening the sentiment that cryptocurrencies are here to stay and further studies and research in these fields embedded into the course work is a strong possibility.
On the technological front, with e-coin launching Bitcoin Debit card affiliate program, which aims at bridging the gap between traditional financial services and bitcoin, it’s now possible to load bitcoins into debit cards and make payments for the transactions. With Coinbase also enabling purchase of bitcoin through debit-card/credit-card, we are now in a transformative phase where the traditional financial services are being used to develop and adopt systems that would be framework for the future bitcoin usage.
How the technology will evolve to accommodate or change the traditional banking system is to be seen.
Developments in Blockchain
On August 20th, Nasdaq revealed its plans with the underlying technology of Bitcoin and Blockchain. In an interview with efinancialnews Fredrik Voss, Vice President and head of Blockchain strategy at Nasdaq answered questions about how the program is progressing and what other applications Nasdaq is thinking of.
Nasdaq is planning to launch the private market initiative later this year and is clearly looking at commercial uses for the Blockchain now. The application of distributed ledgers in financial markets for things like settlement and custody, to create efficiency in back-office processes is the primary aim.
Another application of Blockchain this week would be the launch of John McAfee SwiftMail which is a new free peer-to-peer, proof-of-work, encrypted mail system that uses the technology underlying Bitcoin to replace email. The system is said to have very high encryption as privacy is one of the key aspects of SwiftMail.
On the techspace, what has been hogging all the limelight is the new chip for Antminer S7 by Bitmain that is believed to be more powerful than its predecessor. Bitmain, the bitcoin mining ASIC provider, announced on August 20th it is launching its fourth-generation ASIC, the BM1385. This chip is claimed to generate a 45 percent increase in hashrate while needing 50 percent less electricity than its former chip, the BM1384.
Another interesting development would be Netcoins which can supposedly turn any device (iPad, Android devices) into a bitcoin ATM. It is ideally designed for retailers to enable transactions in bitcoin and attract tech savvy customers.
News that’s also been doing rounds is about the Mike Tyson ATM. While initially the prospect was heralded to be a scam, the ATM was launched in Las Vegas with Bitcoin Direct backing the launch.
While security threats in Windows 10 has put the wallet developers in a tight situation, the iOS space is now crowded with launch of new wallets everyday making it hard for the users to choose from the many apps. Most people believe that the advanced bitcoin demographic belongs to iOS users and this is the primary reason for the competition while some say that the lack of a secure wallet in Android and security issues with Windows has led to this development.
This post originally appeared in Benzinga: Bitcoin Trading Intelligence: August Was A Rocky Month With Many Developments In The Bitcoin Ecosystem