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The cryptocurrency market and the black market are linked not just in popular lore, but in actual fact, and there’s no denying that. However, what that actually means is different from what you might expect, and the relation is in no way linear. To clarify the tangled web, let’s make sense of our notions and facts.

What is the black market?

You’d be excused if the notion of black market suggested to you drugs, guns and hired killers. Most people think that. In fact, “black market” is a notion referring to “economic activity that takes place outside government-sanctioned channels”, as Investopedia puts it. Drugs, guns and hired killers are indeed part of it, but they represent a very small percentage. Most of the black market consists of things you are distantly aware of, though they may be happening all around you, mostly having to do with various forms of tax evasion: cash transactions that leave no taxable trace, hiring employees without a legal contract or under various fraudulent forms of contracts, prostitution services, as well as the sale of goods that may be banned in certain jurisdictions. …


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In just a few months, we’ll be celebrating Bitcoin’s first decade in existence, and with that, the birth of a class of digital assets that has revolutionized how decentralization can — and does — work in the financial, insurance, real estate, supply managements sectors and more. Seen in the context of fiat money, one decade is, well, less than the blink of an eye, less than a dot along the line. And yet, just look at the exposure and engagement Bitcoin has developed over this short span of time, and you’ll realize it’s, well, kind of a big deal. …


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It’s not just popular; it’s scorching hot. Not a day goes by, it seems, without another business setting up a blockchain unit, launching a blockchain project or entering a blockchain partnership. Microsoft, with Azure, and especially IBM, starting with its open-source Hyperledger Fabric, were among the first to jump onboard, but now a slew of large companies and institutions are adopting the technology:

· automotive technology and integrations: Ford, Toyota

· supply-chain management: shipping giant Maersk, mining company BHL, food company Nestle, retailer Walmart, consumer goods company Unilever, retail giant Alibaba, pharma giant Pfizer, beverage company Anheuser-Busch, and electronics giant Samsung…


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It’s been a weird, passive-aggressive relationship. Crypto markets have been, from the outset, designed specifically to bypass the necessity of banks and any sort of financial supervision. In turn, banks initially regarded crypto as a geeky fad, then as a questionable platform for dealing in illicit activity, and, more recently, as a more direct threat to their supremacy in handling financial transactions.

Crypto was, indeed, all of those things. It still is, unfortunately, a platform for illicit activities. However, precisely because it no longer is a geeky fad, it has more recently grown to represent an increased threat to banking institutions around the world. For the past couple of years, it seems these banking institutions have been taking notes, building defenses, even sometimes hedging their bets. It will soon become imperious that they take a stand. …


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Two things happened over the past year that are particularly relevant to any discussion of the cryptocurrency and blockchain revolution: cryptocurrency adoption rates are growing steadily; and blockchain technology adoption is growing steadily. Whatever objections crypto & blockchain critics are voicing, and many of them are right, the technology is trending up.

We can make financial transactions better with cryptocurrency. And we can make industries better with blockchain. The fate of cryptocurrency and blockchain over the next decade, though, depends on two major factors: cryptocurrency regulation and the health and usability of the blockchain.

Blockchain

Blockchain has one advantage over crypto: it’s not regulated. It is a distributed ledger technology that enables nodes in a network to co-create immutable, decentralized and transparent records of data. Cryptocurrency, some might say, is merely one of its applications; there are dozens of other ways in which blockchain can exist without it. …


When you’re getting ready to play on the cryptocurrency market, you’ve got more than 2,000 coins, all of which are promising to revolutionize this or that, be the next something or other, or plain old change the world. So, if you’re not a veteran to the tribulations of crypto, the big question is going to be, “What is the best cryptocurrency to invest in?”

The answer, of course, is that everyone must do their own research and not take advice from anyone not fully authorized to give advice. …


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The history of cryptocurrency is, for all intents and purposes, the history of money, and any cryptocurrency history should start at the dawn of human civilization. That is the best way to make sense of why cryptocurrency was invented, why it defied all odds to live on, and why cryptocurrency is a good thing.

Bartering

What does bartering have to do with cryptocurrency history? It is, in a sense, the primitive equivalent of a fair market. Bartering, the direct trade of goods and services, was, in a sense, the perfect trading system: as in any decentralized market, everything was worth whatever someone else was willing to pay for it. There was no intrinsic value of an object other than its market value. …

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Token Meister

TokenMeister.com is an independent, reliable source of education and information in the field of blockchain, cryptocurrency and ICOs.

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