Official Newsletter of 2/24

The past week brought a strong recovery to the entire market, with Bitcoin rising from $3,600 to $4,100 in six days (albeit with a period of considerable stagnancy in the middle). This didn’t last long however, and Sunday saw a quick reversal back to the $3,800 support followed by a price drop to around $3,771. As with any case of Bitcoin faltering, alts suffered even worse and saw double-digit losses in the space of an hour. Bitcoin permabulls will likely look for an external cause for this drop, though as usual nothing suggests one exists other than market sentiment. The earlier market rally was initiated by a huge Ethereum pump on the 17th of February, and ETH continued to perform well — up 30% on the weekly chart as of the weekend ahead of the hard fork update on Feb. 25th (before Sunday’s crash, that is). This does have an external cause — the same phenomenon occurred the first time the Constantinople upgrade was expected, and although analysts have suggested a dump may come afterwards, the considerable reduction in mining rewards would cast that prediction into doubt. The reduction is not as severe as Bitcoin’s halving events, but likely still enough to impact circulating supplies. Aside from price movement, there was also drama from the teams affected by Binance’s newest delisting wave, led by Substratum whose CEO strongly objects to the criteria implied as the cause for SUB’s removal. Contesting this is a no-brainer, as removal from Binance typically leads to further exchanges following suit and general doom befalling the project in question. Accordingly, Upbit and Bittrex (which generally offer the same trading pairs) appear to be preparing to delist some of the five Binance victims, with Salt and Wings receiving warnings.

(Taken on 2/24/2019 at 19:07:30 PM US East Coast Standard Time from Cointelegraph)

Monthly Pivots

(Taken on 2/24/2019 at 19:07:30 PM US East Coast Standard Time from DailyFX)

Weekly Pivots

(Taken on 2/24/2019 at 19:07:30 PM US East Coast Standard Time from DailyFX)

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Business

Zuckerberg’s Blockchain Offering

In a recent interview with Harvard Law professor Jonathan Zittrain, Zuckerberg revealed that Facebook is exploring account authentication methods with blockchain use cases. All of this is part of Facebook’s new effort to repair their public image concerning data security following a myriad of breaches and government investigations.

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Technology

Crypto Wallet on Samsung Galaxy S10 Confirmed

Several weeks ago we detailed rumors suggesting the Galaxy S10 would have a built-in crypto wallet after a screenshot of Ethereum on the app surfaced. This is now a lock-in, as the phone was available for hands-on testing after its unveiling last week. The phone has a built in “keystore”, which maintains private keys, and a wallet and interface with Bitcoin and Ethereum pre-installed. There is an option to add further tokens, though which tokens will be available is uncertain. The crypto community has celebrated this as a legitimization of blockchain and a huge step forward in adoption. The Galaxy S7 was one of the highest selling phones of all time, but sales have waned since. Nonetheless, the prospect of ten million or so flagship smartphones with pre-installed BTC and ETH wallets bodes well for the industry.

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Scandals

User Pays over $300,000 in fees for $15 worth of Ethereum

An extremely suspicious Ethereum transaction occurred on Feb 19th, when 0.1 ETH was sent with a transaction fee of 1200 ETH, worth just over $300,000 at the time . Although the most obvious explanation of this is an error commonly referred to as a “fat finger”, many are speculating that a more devious reason is behind the ludicrous self-decided fee. The wallet in question has a history of similar transactions, including 840 ETH for a 0.2 ETH transaction. This should completely rule out the fat finger theory, as nobody who has ever lived would make a mistake like that twice. Reddit users have speculated that this may be an elaborate money-laundering ploy, as these transactions are always mined by the same miner and are not broadcasted publicly. This suggests a system of “washing” Ethereum which had been previously stolen or otherwise ill-gotten. By receiving the Ethereum as a transaction fee instead of a direct transfer, there is less likelihood of having “dirty” coins tracked through the blockchain and linked to the culprit. In this instance, the enormity of the fee seems to have raised too much suspicion, though it is now apparent such a procedure could be easily done with smaller amounts as an effective laundering mechanism.

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Regulation

SEC Pushes Two Crypto ETF’s to Federal Register

There has been a new push to put two crypto ETF’s on the Federal Register. Once on the register, the SEC has 45 days to propose regulation, specifically “approving, denying, or delaying” new motions. Currently, the SEC is considering proposals from “Bitwise Asset Management & NYSE Arca and CBOE, VanEck, and SolidX Partners.”

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Education

University of Michigan Invests $11.9M in Crypto Fund

The top-tier university has invested in a fund managed by Andreessen Horowitz. Looking to increase their holdings in what they determine to be “new and exciting technology”, the university hopes to have a better position within the community. This move follows their efforts to create classes modeling blockchain technology engineering, one of the hottest jobs right now according to LinkedIn.

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Further readings we found interesting!

1.) SoftBank’s Top 2 Investors Complain About Overpayment For Tech Companies

https://cointelegraph.com/news/major-chinese-university-launches-blockchain-research-center

2.) Bitcoin Blows Past $4,100, Is It a Dead Cat Bounce?

https://www.newsbtc.com/2019/02/23/bitcoin-btc-explodes-past-4100-with-record-exchange-and-futures-volume-is-it-a-dead-cat-bounce/