Cryptocurrencies led by Bitcoin had a good week with gains and robust volumes. While the leader held on to gains, several altcoins lost ground as the week progressed.
After opening the week on a strong note, the cryptocurrency market sustained the upward momentum that saw the top cryptocurrency Bitcoin spike on Tuesday to cross the $7,000 mark. Volumes surged in tandem.
Many experts suggested that the uptrend was largely driven by technicals, while some said prices may be supported by “FOMO”-triggered buying.
That said, the week had plenty of positive news for the cryptocurrency market.
This included the news of big investment firms such as BlackRock and billionaire investors like Steven Cohen exploring the nascent cryptocurrency market and that of Mastercard filing for patent for a payment system that links cryptocurrencies to fiat accounts.
Bitcoin has lingered above $7,400 mark since Thursday, but experts suggest it is likely to face stiff resistance once it starts chasing $8,000 level.
Cryptocurrency market capitalization eased to $284.11 billion from Thursday as of 10.32 am ET, Friday on CoinMarketCap.
Here is a collection of main news from the cryptocurrency and blockchain space over the week.
Bitcoin Tops $7K In Surprise Surge
Bitcoin price shot up by more than $600 in 30 minutes Tuesday, and the dramatic move resulted in substantial spike in its volume. The most popular cryptocurrency opened at $6,726.40 on Tuesday, and within a short span of time it reached $7,368.22. Bitcoin is most likely to fall to $5,000 before rebounding to as high as $50,000 this year, Arthur Hayes, CEO of the crypto trading platform BitMEX, told CNBC. Elsewhere, altcoin EOS topped the Chinese government’s latest cryptocurrency rankings for a second straight month, while Bitcoin climbed to 16th spot from 17th.
BlackRock Explores Bitcoin; Mastercard Patents To Link Cryptos To Fiat Accounts
BlackRock, a world leading investment firm managing $6.3 trillion assets, has established a working group to explore its options in the fast growing cryptocurrency market, in contrast to the earlier stance of its chief executive who shunned cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin. Payment solutions giant Mastercard has won a patent for a payment system linking Blockchain-based assets to fiat currency accounts. In the UK, three leading robo-advisers have sought a clampdown on cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin saying that they are creating an unequal playing filed for wealth managers, London’s Financial News reported. Meanwhile, tech giant IBM partnered with financial technology startup Stronghold to launch stablecoin, a cryptocurrency that’s pegged to the US dollar, on Stellar blockchain Network.
Global Watchdog Assessing Banks’ Crypto Asset Exposure
The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, which sets the standards for banks across the world, is measuring the extent of banks’ exposure to “crypto assets” such as Bitcoin. The BCBS “is assessing the materiality of banks’ direct and indirect exposures to crypto assets, clarifying the prudential treatment of such exposures, and monitoring developments related to crypto assets for banks and supervisors,” the Financial Stability Board said in a report.
Coinbase Plans To Add Five More Cryptos; Robinhood Adds Dogecoin
Coinbase, a popular crypto exchange in the US, is planning to work with local banks and regulators to explore the possibility of adding five more new crypto assets – Cardano, Basic Attention Token, Stellar Lumens, Zcash, and 0x. And Robinhood, a commission-free stock and cryptocurrency trading app, has now added support for one more virtual currency, Dogecoin, after adding Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash on its crypto trading platform last week. The Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi launched its Cloud business arm, which will enable partners to build digital asset exchanges quickly.
Rosenstein Reveals Bitcoin Funding For Clinton-targeted Russian Hacking
U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s revelation that 12 Russian military intelligence agents used bitcoin to fund hacking efforts targeting Democratic Party presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016 sparked firestorm on social media and in US political circles. Elsewhere, the Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) issued an emergency cease-and-desist order against the promoters of three Utah-based crypto-mining investment companies controlled by Darren Olayan. Rep. Brad Sherman demanded that cryptocurrency mining and buying should be banned, during a public hearing on cryptocurrency.
HKMA Plans Blockchain For Trade Finance; Banco Santander To Use Tech
Hong Kong’s de facto central bank is set to launch a blockchain-backed trade finance platform that will link with 21 banks, the Financial Times reported. Spanish banking group Banco Santander plans to use blockchain and other new technologies within its capital markets business to change how securities are issued, traded, and settled.
Russia Releases Whitelist Of Crypto Firms; Oracle Unveils Blockchain Cloud
Russia’s blockchain and cryptocurrency alliance has created a registry of firms that offer blockchain and crypto-related products or services in the country. The white-list, published by the Russian Association of Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain (RACIB), includes the names of companies which are involved in cryptocurrency mining, investment, training, marketing, legal, and initial coin offering (ICO) related services. Enterprise software giant Oracle Corp. has launched an early adopter version of Oracle Blockchain Cloud Service.
Blockchain In Aerospace; NTT Files Patent For Blockchain-based Contract
Aerospace and defense giant Boeing announced its plans to use blockchain technologies along with artificial intelligence to track unmanned air vehicles in flight. And French aerospace company Thales Group and technology consultant Accenture have partnered to develop a blockchain-based system that could help eliminate counterfeit and grey-market supplies in the complex global supply chains supporting the aerospace and defense industry. Japanese telecom giant NTT filed a patent for a blockchain technology-based new contract agreement method.
Japanese Minister Denies Links To Crypto Exchange Under Scrutiny
A Japanese Minister has denied links to an unregistered cryptocurrency exchange, which is under probe for allegedly violating the Japanese fund settlement law. Japan’s Financial Services Agency had warned the Tokyo-based company in January that it was suspected of violating the law on payment services by operating a cryptocurrency exchange as it was not registered to do so, Japanese media reported.
As of 10.33 am ET on Friday, Bitcoin was up 19.76 percent for the week at $7,485.95 and Ethereum was higher by 7.14 percent at $464.51 on Coinbase.
by Jyotsna VRTTNews Staff Writer
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