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After a series of ups and downs, bitcoin’s price went to its top. However, it plunged to less than half of that value later. The unexpected changes are now compared to the dot-com bubble and are highlighting the speculative nature of investing in cryptocurrency.

The price of bitcoin fell below $10,000 for the first, on December 1. At one point, it fell below $9,300 on one exchange. The price later rose back to almost $12,000, however, the investors and economists are still not sure how long the price will stay there. It is also said that the recent skim was due to the fear of crackdowns in the cryptocurrency markets.

South Korea has suggested a ban on the trading of cryptocurrency, although no plans are settled yet. Also, same news has been reported about China.

Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency, as it is the largest and well-popular digital currency, that is globally bought and sold in exchanges.

According to Timothy Lee (senior reporter at Ars Technica), it is not based on dollars. The value of bitcoin floats against other cryptocurrencies, in the same way the euro and dollar glide against each other. Users say that bitcoin has got a very effective system for authenticating transactions, as it is based on a revolutionary technology.

Bitcoin users also point out that the currency is not tied to government’s whims and according to them, it’s a good thing. Recently the price dropped, and that may not be a good thing for those investors who are trying to figure out what crash actually means for the cryptocurrency’s future.

Recently many cryptocurrencies have shown the same swipes. According to David Kotok (Cumberland Advisors chairman and chief investment officer), almost 20 years ago, the technology and the new internet stocks accomplished valuation of $7 trillion, just because of speculation. The prices of shares used to be very high and after they collapsed, investors got badly miffed. And apparently, the same thing is going to happen with these cryptocurrencies.

Same rise and fall in the price of bitcoin was seen by the investors in December.  After China announced that it was banning all the banks that were trading cryptocurrencies, bitcoin fell by 40 percent just within days after hitting a record price of almost $1,150.

There’ve been dramatic ups and downs in cryptocurrency’s price last year. Bitcoin had the value around $900 at the beginning of 2017, however, its value got tripled within few months. According to Kotok, cryptocurrencies are highly speculative and investing money in cryptocurrencies is a speculative thing to do.  There’s a chance that you may make a profit, but Kotok has seen many people who invested their money into bitcoin and now they’re having loads of trouble in getting their cash back when they try to sell it.

According to some analysts, the cryptocurrency is trying to find an impermanent price floor, but according to a CNBC report, Citigroup analysts think that the price of bitcoin would plunge again to half of its current value. According to Ars Technica’s Lee, it’s still going to be unpredictable. She thinks it’ll go more up and then it’ll crash again. So, no one knows how far down it’ll decline.

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Bitcoin vs. Ethereum- 2017 Edition

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There are various warriors out there fighting for the cryptocurrency crown, but the lead runners are Bitcoin and Ethereum and both have serious backing. Due to the increase in competition, it is important for investors to understand the similarities and differences between the two.

What is Bitcoin

Bitcoin is the first form of digital currency which was created by Satoshi Nakamoto. Since everything is shown on the public ledger, the blockchain, you can be confident that the transaction is legitimate. Bitcoin offers lower transaction fees than traditional online payment mechanisms and has no interference of banks. Also, it is used to buy things electronically. In that sense, it’s like conventional dollars, euros, or yen, which are also trading digitally at the moment.

 

What is Ethereum

Ethereum is meant to be much more than a payment system. It is also based on blockchain technology and was introduced to supplement decentralized applications.

It even features smart contracts and the Ethereum Virtual Machine. Firstly, Ethereum’s smart contracts allow contract negotiation and facilitation using an app which provides a decentralized way to verify and enforce them. It is powered by the Ethereum cryptocurrency Ether, which is held in the Ethereum wallet. Their aim is to provide greater security than normal contracts and bring down the associated cost. Also, the Ethereum Virtual Machine helps to create blockchain applications in a much easier and efficient way, enabling people to run any program.

 

Bitcoin vs. Ethereum:

In Bitcoin blockchain, miners mine to earn bitcoins and two-thirds of all available bitcoins have already been mined. The reward for mining halves about every four years and it’s current value is at 12.5 bitcoins with average block time as 10 minutes. Due to this block time, Bitcoin is suffering from slow transaction speeds thus, vendors and purchasers are choosing to shift.

On the other hand, Ethereum rewards its miners with ethers, which is a kind of token that fuels the network. You earn 5 ethers given for each block and unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum’s block time is 12 seconds. Ethereum’s GHOST protocol enables quick block time. The faster the block time, the quicker the confirmations. However, there are also more orphaned blocks. Ethereum gives application developers the opportunity to create all sorts of applications that carry out their own set of operations, which have never been seen before. While smart contracts are set up to be unchanging and trustworthy, they are still ultimately a creation of humans who are capable of error.

Another major difference is the supply of Bitcoin, which is exceedingly low, with just 16.24 million left from 21 million. Whereas, Ethereum has over 89,752,192 coins currently existing. This is an advantage for Ethereum since Bitcoin might be left behind due to its low supply.

Furthermore, both Ethereum and bitcoin use different hashing algorithms. While Bitcoin uses SHA-256 algorithm that produces a number in hexadecimal format, Ethereum uses Ethash algorithm.

Here’s a table representing all the differences between Bitcoin and Ethereum:

 

The future of Bitcoin and Ether

As we glance into the future, it’s hard to get a grip on who exactly is going to be on top of the chain. Over the years, Bitcoin has become more and more popular, there has been a steady increase in volume since the beginning of 2017. It now represents a technological breakthrough that has the potential to change the way the world banks. Now standing on $2209, for the first time in history, surpassing even the price of gold.

However, as high as Bitcoin pushes, it is going to drag Ethereum with it as well, which is now trading at $175. While the future of Ether is more uncertain than the future of Bitcoin, the potential gains are also much greater.

Both digital currencies continue to push all-time highs for almost every available metric and show no or very little signs of slowing down.

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Throwback to When a Savage Police Chief Asked to Receive his Entire Salary in Bitcoins

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Throwback Thursday: Kentucky Police Chief Asks to be Paid in Bitcoin

Vicco, Ky., is a town that’s known to be one of the smallest of the smallest towns, with a population of just around 330 people. But hey, don’t judge a town by the number of its inhabitants, right? Well in 2013, that was definitely the case here since that did not keep a Police Chief named Tony Vaughn away from the trends of the internet and rising cryptocurrencies.

Considering back then Bitcoin was still gradually growing and beginning to stabilize, it was a story that gave the currency quite a boost and hopes of becoming a payment method one day. Luckily, the city commission approved of this and after standard federal and state reductions in US dollars, Vaughn had received the bitcoins in his personal account.

Fast forward four years and Bitcoin has earned and is still earning a lot of fame and popularity as major investors have accepted the cryptocurrency as a means of payment. Also, let’s not forget the endless amount of altcoins following right behind. One can safely say that we are, as a matter of fact, entering a world of digitization.

 

Story Credits: cnet.com

 

 

 

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China Central Bank adviser: “Bitcoin can be an asset, not a currency”

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Bitcoin and other virtual currencies are assets, but calling them currency is a bit exaggeration. The digital coins do not meet the fundamental attributes needed to be classified as currency. These are the words of the Chinese Central Bank adviser, Sheng Songcheng.

The advisor made these comments in an interview with a financial magazine ‘Yicai’ this late Thursday.

The Main Story:

“Bitcoin does not have the fundamental attributes needed to be a currency as it is a string of code generated by complex algorithms… But I do not deny that virtual currencies have technical value and fall under the category of ‘assets’,” he said.

He made these comments after the Chinese Central Bank increased the scrutiny of Bitcoin exchanges in the country earlier this year. The move introduced trading fees and prompted the companies to stop margin lending.

While many governments around the world are still contemplating on how to regulate and classify Bitcoin, the Chinese authorities have already classified Bitcoin as a ‘virtual good’.

Sheng also believes that Bitcoin after being capped in 2140 would make it impossible for it to become a medium of exchange as to become a medium of exchange a currency must meet modern economic development needs which Bitcoin lacks due to it being in an exceedingly small quantity.

He concluded by saying that the fiscal authorities in China should chip away at issuing a central bank virtual currency that it could direct and run properly.

News Credits: CNBC

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