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Cryptocurrency hedge funds were the most profitable asset in 2019, and how to earn BTC in Minecraft

 Cryptocurrency hedge funds were the most profitable asset in 2019

Hedge funds through bitcoin as their primary asset were the most profitable for the year 2019, according to a study conducted by Eurekahedge.

The profitability of hedge funds with cryptocurrency was around 16% on average, whereas traditional hedge funds only received a profit of 10,4%.

Steve Kurtz, CEO of the Galaxy Digital cryptocurrency fund said that the investors interested in Bitcoin are “getting bigger” as the profitability of bitcoin in a duration of 1-, 3- and 10 years is looking impressive.

 The revenue of ethereum miners fell by 75%

In 2019, Ethereum miners have generated $936 million in coins, down 75% in 2018, The Block reports.

ETH hash rate reached peak levels in August 2018 at around 292 TH/s, after which the capacity decreased by 43% and now it stands at about 165 TH/s. Mining was most profitable in January 2018, when ethereum was trading near a historic high of $ 1,400.

For comparison, the total income of bitcoin miners in 2019 was over 5 times higher than that of ethereum miners.

 You can earn bitcoins in Minecraft

In Minecraft, the popular multiplayer game, the SatoshiQuest server has been launched, which allows players to receive prizes in bitcoins.

Each player pays $1 in BTC that goes to the treasure fund. A player who finds the loot on the vast landscape receives 85% of the fund, with 15% going back into the next round’s loot pot.

The first round of SatoshiQuest took place on January 26 and it starts over every time someone finds the treasure.

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The price of ASIC miners to rise because of coronavirus, and ethereum surpasses the $200 mark

 The number of transactions in the BTC blockchain has reached 500 million

The number of confirmed transactions in the bitcoin network has exceeded 500 million. This was announced by Jameson Lopp, the developer of Bitcoin Core, in his Twitter account.

“Today, as of block 616064, Bitcoin surpassed 500 million transactions confirmed on the blockchain,” Lopp tweeted.

It is worth noting that the network is growing with great acceleration: in 2017, the number of transactions did not exceed 250 million. At the current growth rate, in two years the blockchain can surpass the 1 billion transaction mark.

 The price of ASIC miners to rise because of coronavirus

That’s what Chen Feng, Sales Director of Canaan, Chinese mining manufacturer, thinks. Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the country declared quarantine and closed down all enterprises, which forces miner manufacturers to postpone the delivery of equipment.

According to Feng, companies will resume work after February 10-15, and ASIC miners will start rising in price in February-March simply because of short supply. Moreover, he points out that it is not clear at the moment it is not clear when cheap logistics will resume in the country.

 Ethereum has surged 10% in 24 hrs and surpassed the mark of $200

The world’s second cryptocurrency by market capitalization continues to strengthen — its price has grown by more than 10% to $210 in 24 hours.

Analysts believe that the price of ETH will continue to rise. Trader GalaxyBTC points out that the ETH/USD pair has approached the two-year resistance line, after breaking which "it’s showtime." And according to analyst Josh Rager, in two years, many will regret that they did not buy ethereum at the price of $ 200.

The majority of crypto assets from the TOP-100 show the positive dynamics over the past 24 hours. Thus, bitcoin has updated the maximum of 2020, having risen in price to the level of $ 9,700.

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Cyber criminals netted $ 4.3 billion in 2019, and Japan plans to launch its own cryptocurrency

 Japan plans to launch its own cryptocurrency

The country should have its digital currency in two-to-three years, according to Kozo Yamamoto, the head of the commission for the study of banking and financial systems of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan.

He noted that the government will include this question in the list of medium-term tasks and attach the paramount importance to it.

“The sooner the better. We’ll draft proposals to be included in government’s policy guidelines, and hopefully make it happen in two-to-three years,” Yamamoto said.

He thinks that each country should create a digital platform to control cash flow. This will help better handle crises and stabilize the economy.

 Cyber criminals stole $4.3 billion in 2019

Threat actors stole at least $4.3 billion in cryptocurrency in 2019, according to a study by Chainalysis. In 2018, the amount consituted $3 billion.

The dramatic increase of fraud was caused by the spread of financial pyramids, with 90% of the funds stolen through six schemes. The Plus Token platform was among the most notorious ones, it promised customers daily income for storing coins. The creators of the pyramid managed to raise $2 billion, they are currently under investigation.

In 2017, most cryptocurrencies were stolen through ICOs, and in 2018, through hacker attacks.

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Tether to track USDT transactions, and US authorities want to strengthen control over the crypto sphere

 Tether to track USDT transactions

The company will implement a compliance tool to track suspicious transactions in USDT tokens. The goal is to meet the requirements of regulators in various countries. To do this, Tether will use the Know Your Transaction software created by firm Chainalysis.

“Know Your Transaction (KYT) is a real-time AML compliance solution for montiroinga token’s full lifecycle, from issuance to redemption, ” Chainalysis said.

According to the Tether company, the privacy of USDT owners will not be affected. Earlier, the British regulator suspended ePayments system due to non-compliance with the requirements of the anti-money laundering law.

 Trading volumes on cryptocurrency exchanges increase by 70%

Since the beginning of 2020, trade on spot cryptocurrency exchanges has increased by 70% and reached a six-month peak.

More than half of the volume falls on the Binance exchange, whose share in the total turnover has also grown, according to a research by The Block. Regulated platforms of derivatives also see an increase of activity. Open interest at Bakkt reached a record $ 12 million at the end of January, and the average trading volume went up to $26.45 million.

Things are going well on CME too — in January the average trade turnover increased by 144% to $458 million. BitMEX is also not far behind — the level of trading in perpetual BTC swaps increased by 55% in the first month of 2020.

 USA to release new cryptocurrency regulation rules

The US Department of the Treasury and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) are developing new requirements related to cryptocurrency. This was stated by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

He did not disclose the details but noted that departments are paying great attention to working out this issue and are working closely with other watchdogs. Mnuchin also added that he shares the concerns of Congress over the use of digital currencies in illegal operations.

Earlier, the administration of US President Donald Trump proposed budget proposal for 2021, which includes strengthening control over cryptocurrency transactions.

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Best days of the week to trade BTC, and Craig Wright says he owns rights to Bitcoin network

 What days of the week it is best to buy and sell bitcoin

Longhash, data analytics platform, conducted a study: which days and hours are the most profitable to buy and sell.

For this study, experts analyzed two years of hourly bitcoin price data for each day of the week, having calculated the average prices of opening, closing, as well as maximum and minimum.

It turned out that bitcoin’s price had a tendency to be at its lowest point of the week on Fridays at around 6 AM UTC, and Monday evening/Tuesday morning at midnight UTC the price is on average $170 higher than on Friday morning.

The researchers note that Monday to Tuesday night institutional traders from Asia, America and Europe open long positions. On Friday, market participants seek to take profits before the weekend.

 Craig Wright says he owns rights to Bitcoin

Craig Wright, the self-proclaimed Bitcoin creator, demanded that Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash networks stop using the distributed registry, which, he said, belongs to him.

Wright said he would protect his intellectual rights to the first cryptocurrency’s blockchain in court.

“As the creator of Bitcoin, I maintain the sui generis rights to any copy of the database created from Genesis in January 2009. I shall not be relinquishing the ownership. I will be licensing it, and have already engaged in a process.”

He pointed out that only Bitcoin SV has a right to use a distributed registry, while Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash do it illegally.

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Whales buy bitcoin, and Binance can not cope with the influx of customers

 Research: whales are buying bitcoin

Analysts at the Kraken exchange found that in February, major holders of bitcoin (100-1,000 BTC) became much more active. According to the report, the previous phase of the accumulation of coins by whales led to an increase in the exchange rate in January of this year. A similar relationship was observed in 2018-2019.

“We anticipate accumulation to conclude in the weeks/months ahead and volatility to re-emerge”, experts say.

There are also“smaller” investors who own amounts between 0.1-1 BTC - over the year their number increased by around 10%. However, the largest coin holders (over 1,000 BTC) are still employing “wait-and-see” tactics, analysts say.

 Binance performance issues caused by an influx of users

Last week, customers of one of the largest cryptocurrency websites Binance encountered the website’s performance issues.

CEO Changpeng Zhao said that the problems were caused by an influx of users an increased load on the system. Zhao links the influx of customers with bitcoin’s price returning to $10,000.

“The difference between BTC at $10,000 this time around and the previous times is, there are a lot more users now. While this is a solid sign of strong recovery for the crypto market, it also puts on significant load for our systems,” the Binance CEO wrote.

 CelticGold encourages investing in bitcoin

Another major investment company recommends its customers to invest part of their funds in bitcoin.

CelticGold specializes in precious metals trading. The company’s analysts published a report in which they had revealed the advantages of cryptocurrencies and recommended that investors allocate 1-5% of their portfolio into bitcoin.

“If you are very familiar with cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin, you can individually allocate higher percentages to Bitcoin. For the average investor, who is also invested in equities and real estate, 5% in the highly speculative and highly volatile Bitcoin is already a lot!”

CelticGold experts add that BTC is a safe haven asset, as it is not managed by central banks and governments. In addition, the number of coins is limited, and regulators cannot print new ones.

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Ripple gets in the top 100 payment systems, and oil prices are more volatile than bitcoin

 Ripple got in the top 100 international payment systems

The payment system based on the Ripple company blockchain was included in the list of the 100 largest cross-border payment systems. This is the only blockchain project in the list.

The TOP-100 was compiled by the analytic company FXC Intelligence, along with Ripple, the list included Visa, Bank of America and PayPal. In addition, it contains MoneyGram, TransferGo and other payment systems that have partnered up with the blockchain project.

 Oil prices are more volatile than bitcoin

Cryptocurrencies are usually blamed for considerable price fluctuations, but as it turned out, at the moment bitcoin is far from being the most unstable asset. 
At the end of January, The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil price's one-month realized amounted to 119.6%, while that of BTC - 54.5%. For comparison, in gold this indicator is 17.3%, the S&P 500 - 11.6%.

This is not the first time that the oil rate exceeds bitcoin in the range of fluctuations. For example, in the fall of 2019, WTI volatility increased to 133%, when BTC did not exceed 50%. Realized volatility is the standard deviation of daily price fluctuations in percentage.

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BCH, BCV and Tron dip by 20% in two days, and Morgan Creek founder urges not to trust Buffett

 Founder of Morgan Creek: “I would not trust Buffett”

One shouldn’t listen to Warren Buffet’s advice regarding cryptocurrency, Anthony Pompiliano, Founder of Morgan Creek, thinks. According to him, Buffet is a great investor but knows nothing about technology.

“People will listen to Warren Buffett’s opinion because he is one of the best investors of all time. When it comes to technology, though, I think there are better people to listen to. I don’t take technology advice from someone who uses a flip phone or doesn't use email, ” Pompliano said.

He also added that Bitcoin will become the 
will be the global reserve currency in the future, and national digital currencies will not be able to compete with it, since they are controlled by states and are subject to inflation.

 Bitcoin Cash, Tron, and Bitcoin SV collapse by 20% in two days

Cryptocurrency market is in the red: at the moment, all TOP-20 assets, excluding the USDT stable coin, are showing a decline.

Over the past two days, the currencies that lost the most in price are BCH (−22%), BCV (−23%) and Tron (−21%) The average market price of Bitcoin fell from $9,950 to $9,158, Ethereum fell from $275 to $236, the price of XRP fell from $0.2831 to $0.2396.

The total market capitalization dropped by $31 billion: from $290.074 to $259.161. According to analysts, the reason lies in the fact that the price of bitcoin failed to gain a foothold above the strong level of $10,000.

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China suggests banning cryptocurrencies, and Craig Wright seriously plans to seize all BTC

 China proposes to ban cryptocurrencies and ICOs

Chinese authorities must tighten control over the crypto sphere after the launch of the digital yuan, Chen Weigang, former Vice President of China Insurance Regulatory Commission of the Communist Party, said.

According to him, the cryptocurrency circulation and ICO should be banned.

“I always believe that speculation in cryptocurrency and ICO is not the direction of financial development and must be resolutely banned. They must be completely banned,” — the ex-official said.

He added that banks need to be prohibited from the opportunity to conduct any transactions with cryptocurrency.

 Craig Wright plans to seize bitcoins through miners

Craig Wright, an Australian scientist and self-proclaimed creator of Bitcoin, is serious about seizing all existing coins through the courts.

Podcaster Peter McCormack published screenshots of Slack messages where Wright writes that the first BTC seizures will begin as early as 2020. Private keys won’t be required for this, since the court will order the nodes to return the bitcoins to their rightful owner, that is, Craig Wright.

“Without keys, BTC will be confiscated. Code is law, and courts can mandate patching code. Bitcoin is not encrypted. It is economic,” — the scientist writes.

He also requested data from companies including MtGox, that lost coins. Wright promised them to "return the money starting this year."

 13,000 ATM’s in South Korea to support Litecoin withdrawal

Litecoin Foundation has partnered up with MeconCash, to enable Litecoin withdrawals to Korean Wonat over 13,000 ATM’s across South Korea.

Cryptocurrency will be integrated into the M.Pay platform, which allows to make transfers around the country, buy goods, pay for mobile applications and other services.

Litecoin Foundation Director Alan Austin noted that the partnership will contribute to the spread of cryptocurrency in South Korea:

“The ability to access cash through Litecoin at over 13,000 ATM’s opens the door to new opportunities within the Korean market and globally. With billions in remittances sent each year to South Korea, Litecoin (through its speed, security, and low transaction fees) offers significant advantages over traditional methods of sending money overseas,” — he said.

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42% of BTC has not moved since 2017, and trading volume on LocalBitcoins hits a 7-year low

 42% of BTC has not moved anywhere since 2017

CoinMetrics analyst Nate Maddrey noted that 42% of bitcoins stay the wallets of their owners since June 2017.

In addition, since January last year, investors have been actively building crypto portfolios. A similar situation was observed in mid-2017, by the end of which Bitcoin made the famous rally and set a price record at $20,000. According to representatives of the crypto community, at this moment the price of BTC is being prepared for a new leap.

However, it should be noted that about 4 million coins are permanently lost and physically unable to move.

 Trading volumes at LocalBitcoins hit a 7-year low

Trading on the popular p2p cryptocurrency exchange platform LocalBitcoins has dropped to the levels of 2013, according to Coin Dance.

Last week, the weekly trading volume was 3,411 BTC, which is almost 10,000 BTC lower than in the same period last year. Such low volumes took place only when the exchange was launched. In 2019, LocalBitcoins introduced new user verification rules in order to comply with the KYC/AML requirements of the Finnish law where the exchange is located. In January, at the request of the EU, the platform also restricted access to several African countries.

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South Korea legalizes cryptocurrencies, and the US may issue a digital currency after China

 Opinion: the US will issue digital currency after China

The US authorities are closely monitoring the development of Chinese digital yuan and, if necessary, will launch their own digital currency, according to ING economist Carlo Cocuzzo.

During a presentation at Blockchain Week in London, Cocuzzo said that 90% of forex turnover is in dollars, and the United States will not want to lose leadership. If the Federal Reserve considers that it is necessary to issue digital USD as opposed to the Chinese currency, it will immediately do so.

In August last year, representatives of the People's Bank of China announced that the digital yuan will be launched soon, with the prototype and blockchain architecture of the token having been already been fully developed.

 South Korea legalized cryptocurrencies

The South Korean authorities have adopted amendments to the legislation of the country, which legalize trading and storing of cryptocurrency.

For their launch they only need to be signed by the president. The government will be given a year to implement the changes, and representatives of the blockchain industry will be given 6 months to bring their activities in line with the new requirements.

Cryptocurrency exchanges, ICO projects and other blockchain companies will fall under regulation. They will be required to comply with financial reporting requirements, use real bank accounts, follow KYC procedures and certify information security management systems (ISMS).

 Coinbase CEO: the number of cryptocurrency users will grow 100-fold

Today, the number of cryptocurrency users is 50 million people, but this number can grow to 5 billion, says Brian Armstrong, Coinbase exchange CEO.

The adoption of the blockchain will be similar to the spread of the Internet, Armstrong wrote in his Twitter account. In his opinion, a cryptocurrency that wants to become a world leader must meet four requirements: scalability, privacy, decentralized identity, and developer tools.

The primary goal is scalability, the businessman believes — the network must process thousands of transactions per second.

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IOTA network resumes operations after hacking, and trading volume of BTC options hits a record

 IOTA network is back online after hack

IOTA Foundation relaunches network after being suspended because of a hacker attack.

On February 12, 2020, attackers stole 8.55 million tokens (about $2million) from the official Trinity wallet, affecting 50 users. IOTA founder David Sønstebø promised to pay victims back from his own wallet.

The company intends to continue cooperation with the FBI, the police of Great Britain, Germany and Malta to find the criminals.

 Mark Cuban compared buying bitcoin and gold to collecting

American billionaire and owner of the NBA Dallas Mavericks club, Mark Cuban, once again spoke about cryptocurrencies, comparing them to gold and collectables.

“With Bitcoin, some people value it as a store of value, which makes it like baseball cards, art [and] gold,” he said.

Cuban, however, noted the value of the blockchain technology:

“When people say cryptocurrencies have no intrinsic value, they usually lose sight of the value of blockchain technology,” he added.

 Bitcoin options saw record volume

On March 9, BTC options set a new trading record of $198 million.

According to the analytical service Skew, interest in options has grown amid an increase in bitcoin exchange rate volatility up to 65%.

The Deribit derivatives platform registered 86% of transactions worth about $170 million. The second most popular was the OKEx exchange with a trading volume of $23 million, followed by LedgerX and Bakkt. CME, which launched cryptocurrency instruments in January this year, registered only about 1% of the trade turnover.

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Overnight, BTC crashed to a 12-month low, and crypto traders lost $5.8 billion

 Bitcoin collapsed to a 12-month low

This night, the BTC price experienced the largest drop in a day since 2013. The cost of cryptocurrency collapsed by more than 50%, at the moment touching the mark of $ 3,780. Cryptocurrency is currently trading near $5,500.

Most of the crypto assets also lost in value: Ethereum fell 56% to $86, the price of XRP fell to a four-year low at $0.101.

On March 12, buyers closed long positions at $ 811 million on the Bitmex exchange, which was a new record.

 Cryptotraders lost $ 5.8 billion overnight

Due to the sharp collapse of the cryptocurrency market, 235 thousand users suffered losses. The total amount of liquidated transactions amounted to $5.8 billion, according to the portal bybt.com.

The largest number of orders worth about $2.9 billion was forcibly closed by OKEx. BitMEX derivatives platform was the second with a value of $1.7 billion, to follow by Huobi and Binance with losses of $827 million and $360 million.

BitMEX client suffered the largest of $71 million in one transaction.

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Starbucks to accept crypto payments, and Opera integrates a feature to buy BTC and ETH

 Bakkt raises $ 300M in funding

Including from Microsoft. Digital asset startup Bakkt's closed the Series B round, during which the company managed to raise $ 300 million.

The funds were invested by the New York Stock Exchange ICE, Microsoft, PayU, Boston Consulting Group, Goldfinch Partners, CMT Digital and Pantera Capital. Bakkt CEO Mike Blandina said the company plans to launch a payment application this summer.

“With the completion of our Series B financing and recent acquisition of Bridge2 Solutions, Bakkt is now a team of 350 employees and powers the loyalty redemption programs for 7 of the top 10 financial institutions and over 4,500 loyalty and incentive programs including two of the largest US airlines,” he said.

 You can use crypto to pay at Starbucks

By using the Bakkt payment system. The popular coffee shop chain has announced a collaboration with the cryptocurrency platform in test mode - some Starbucks application users got a Bakkt Cash payment function.

“We anticipate that a range of cryptocurrencies will gain traction with customers and, through our work with Bakkt, we will be uniquely positioned to constantly consider and offer customers new and unique ways to pay seamlessly,” Starbucks had said.

Bakkt President Adam White said that the partnership will help the chain reduce payment costs for merchants.

 Opera integrates a feature to buy cryptocurrencies

The U.S. Opera browser users will be able to purchase BTC and ETH directly from the browser. Users can buy cryptocurrency using a bank card or Apple Pay, and coins will be stored on a wallet built into the browser.

The Wyre payment system integrated the function, its commission will be $0.30 + 2.9% for the operation.

“Users can purchase as little as $1 worth of crypto, and there is a maximum daily limit of $250,”

“Users can purchase cryptocurrency even for $ 1, and the maximum daily limit is $ 250. As our browser-based wallet is focused around the usage of cryptocurrencies on the web and using dApps [decentralized applications], we expect the vast majority of transactions will not hit that limit,” a spokesperson at Wyre said.

The service is available in versions of Opera for PC, iOS and Android.

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Bitcoin went up by 23% in 24 hrs, and the Ethereum hashrate may drop by 30%

 Bitcoin went up by 23% in 24 hours

The crypto market has started recovering: total market cap has grown by 19% over the past 24 hours.

BTC price strengthened by 23%: from $5,500 to $6,800. Ethereum rose by 22% and now costs about $148, XRP went up by 15% to $0.1720, Bitcoin Cash - by 29% to $239.

The largest price surge among the TOP 100 crypto assets was demonstrated by Bitcoin SV: the token has risen in price by more than 40% and is now trading near the $172 mark.

 Trading volume on LocalBitcoins jumped by 21%

Over the past week, the trading activity at the LocalBitcoins p2p platform has increased by 21% — this is the largest jump since the summer of 2019.

The main contribution was made by Peru, Chile, Venezuela, Argentina, Egypt, Japan. Moreover, the latter three countries hit all-time-high weekly fiat trade volumes The situation occurs against the background of coronavirus quarantine. For example, banks closed in Venezuela yesterday, which caused an influx of users to cryptocurrency platforms.

 Opinion: Ethereum hashrate to drop by 30%

Most of the mining devices for mining ETH will soon become useless due to the increasing DAG size, developer Kristy-Leigh Minehan says.

This can lead to a sharp drop by 20-30% in the computing power of Ethereum which will make the network vulnerable to reorganization attacks, and also complicate the work of decentralized applications, she said.

Before work, each mining device must download a DAG file, which increases every 30,000 blocks. Currently, its size is 3.52 GB, which no longer allows mining ETH on Nvidia GTX 1060 3 GB graphics cards. According to a blog post by 2miners, the popular ASIC Antminer E3 will become should stop mining as early as April 8th due to the file size growth.

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The U.S. Federal Reserve says they have “infinite amount of cash” — what’s the impact on bitcoin?

 Why BTC will drop to $5,000

A “death cross" formed on the BTC price, a top-down intersection of 50-day and 200-day Moving Average. This will lead to a price drop down to $5,000, Coindesk analyst Omkar Godbole thinks.

However, the drop will not happen immediately: for example, in the spring of 2018 the “cross”, bitcoin price first went up by 50% in a month, and then declined by 70% within six months.

The scenario will be cancelled if BTC can consolidate above $6,460, the analyst writes. Godbole also notes that similar crosses are forming on the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 industrial charts.

 Peter Brandt: Bitcoin price will drop by 50%

Well-known trader Peter Brandt believes that BTC will drop below $3,000. Responding to a comment on Twitter, Brandt posted a chart with a “descending flag” figure - if implemented, the price will go to the level of $2,700.

The trader also indicated that having declined below $7,500, bitcoin price broke the long-term support line and moved into a downtrend. Earlier, the analyst said that bitcoin will drop to zero after breaking this level.

 Opinion: cryptocurrency will benefit from the crisis

Unlimited amount of U.S. dollars will positively affect bitcoin, trader Joseph Young believes.

“Fed printing unlimited money to pump markets = good for bitcoin

Devaluation of dollar over the long term = good for bitcoin

Short-term may be gloomy for bitcoin, but long-term prospect of it remains very bright,” Young tweeted.

A similar opinion is shared by Stack analyst Lennard Neo. He expects an influx of capital into cryptocurrencies due to the uncertainty central banks and governments actions amid the crisis.

CEO of Titus Investment Advisors Justin Gillespie notes that quarantine will strengthen the position of cryptocurrency. According to him, “The longer the people can’t go outside to conduct their business, the more useful the cryptocurrency should become as it can be sent and received from the safety of one’s home."

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Cash and сoronavirus: how to stay safe when dealing with banknotes and bank cards

During the pandemic, when it is of the utmost importance to be very careful about your health and follow good hygiene practice, BestChange team wishes to remind you the necessary precautionary measures when dealing with cash and bank cards.

We already wrote that cash is one of the dirtiest things in the world and a carrier of many diseases. Various microbes live on the banknotes for quite a long time – from one up to two months. Paper money has a lot of cellulose which is the perfect media for the development of bacteria. Plastic and metal money have much fewer microorganisms, and their life is much shorter.

Speaking about COVID-19 specifically, the virus stays up to 5 days on metal materials, 4 days on wood and glass. Paper exposed to coronavirus remained safe after 4-5 days, and the virus stays on plastic for no more than 5 days.

Besides coronavirus, many other bacteria can be found on banknotes: causing skin inflammation, microorganisms associated with the vaginal tract, Escherichia coli and staphylococcal bacteria can be found – they cause intestinal diseases. Besides bacteria, fungi spores and helminthiasis (simply put, worm infections) pathogens can be found on money.

Many infectious disease specialists around the world approve of decreasing the usage of cash in favor of contactless. However, please keep in mind that the direct contact between the bank card and the terminal or touching the terminal when pressing the PIN can be also dangerous in terms of contracting the infection.

We would like to remind you recommendations of WHO: wash your hands, do not touch your face when using cash. WHO does not say that cash must be totally avoided, but theoretically, it can be a channel to contract the virus.

Please remember, that the notion “dirty money” has a real basis behind it and before biting into a snack you have just purchased with some cash, remember what is at stake. Always thoroughly wash your hands or sanitize them after being in contact with cash or touching any surfaces in public spaces, including ATMs.

Modern problems require modern solutions, electronic money and cryptocurrency get another advantage as a safer payment means of the future.

BestChange team asks everyone to follow the advice of doctors and professionals, take care of yourself and your close ones and keep your spirits up!

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Cash turnover hits record high in the U.S. and altcoins mentions on Twitter drop to a minimum

 USD banknote turnover hits a 20-year high

From March 11 to March 18, the turnover of cash dollars in the United States increased by $34 billion, shooting up from $1.809 trillion to $1.843 trillion.

This is the largest growth in the last 20 years, economist John Paul Coning points out: the U.S. citizens are withdrawing money from banks amid the coronavirus epidemic. Last time a similar situation was observed in 1999 when people were afraid of digital devices failure due to the "Y2K bug"

It is noteworthy that the current increase in cash circulation is happening despite the WHO recommendations to avoid contact with banknotes, as COVID-19 can be distributed through them.

 Twitter's altcoin mentions drop to a minimum

Twitter users now write about main altcoins less often - the number of mentions per day has dropped to a three-year low.

The number of posts about XRP has decreased by 60% in two months to 2,542. Ethereum was talked about slightly less — the number of tweets with the hashtag #ETH fell to 2,500, which has become the lowest engagement level since February 2017. For comparison: in December 2017, when the altcoin set a maximum price, the number of tweets about it exceeded 51,000.

Bitcoin’s “little brother” LTC has been completely forgotten —Twitter users mentioned the coin only 350 times a day. The popularity of BTC, on the contrary, has grown, its mentions have doubled since the end of January.

 Small miners shutting off will help the price of bitcoin

Blockware CEO Matt D’Souza said. He analyzed the periods of decline of the network’s hash rate and noted that they were followed by a prolonged increase of cryptocurrency price. In his opinion, now the situation may be repeated.

At the moment, the computing power of the BTC blockchain has dropped to 93 EH/s. In mid-March, when the bitcoin exchange rate sank below $4,000, small miners were forced to turn off the equipment, which led to a sharp drop in the hash rate and the difficulty of mining cryptocurrency.

Matt D’Souza notes that this will benefit the price of bitcoin, as private miners quickly sold their coins to not work at a loss.

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Miners will start to switch off after the halving, and Bitstamp plans to expand its listing

 Some miners will stop working after the halving

States a report by an analytic company Coin Metrics. Despite the fact that Bitcoin price has recovered to the level of $6,300, for many miners the breakeven point is higher than that.

“We expect miners to follow a cycle of decreased profit margins, increased selling, capitulation, and a culling of the least efficient miners from the network. Once this cycle is complete, the miner industry should return to a healthier state that is supportive of future price increases,” the analysts say,

Last week, Bitcoin mining complexity fell by a record 16%, according to BTC.com forecasts, after the next eight-day cycle, it will decrease by another 12%. This will also reduce the profitability of mining for inefficient equipment, according to Coin Metrics.

 Bitstamp may launch trading Ethereum Classic, Zcash and Stellar

Bitstamp, one of the first European cryptocurrency exchanges, is considering listing Ethereum Classic (ETC), Stellar Lumens (XLM), Zcash (ZEC), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Paxos Standard (PAX), USD Coin (USDC) and 0x (ZRX).

The platform’s specialists will thoroughly study the technical characteristics of these cryptocurrencies, as well as their compliance with the security requirements of the exchange and the legislation of some countries. It is worth noting that Bitstamp is extremely cautious about listing coins. Currently, only five crypto assets are traded on the platform: Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash.

 Cryptocurrency trading volume on exchanges increased by 60%

Trade turnover at 22 popular crypto platforms grew by 61% in Q1 of 2020, according to the report of The Block media.

In the last quarter of 2019, the figure was $96 billion, and currently, it has increased to $154 billion — almost the same level as in Q3 of last year.

The volume of transactions in the Bitcoin network increased by 11% to $ 178 billion, while the amount of commissions remained virtually unchanged at $20.12 million. The average BTC block size has slightly increased: from 1.14 MB to 1.17 MB. In January, the share of SegWit transfers exceeded 70%, and the number of public Lightning channels increased by 3%.

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Bitcoin is again trading above $7,000, and the ETH exchange balance reaches its maximum since 2016

 Bitcoin has gone up to $7,000

BTC price today has gone over the mark of $7,100 —over the past 24 hours, cryptocurrency has strengthened by 5%.

Since March 13, bitcoin has grown in price by more than 80%. Most of the crypto assets from TOP-20 also added in value: Stellar (11.69%), TRON (9.51%) and Ethereum (6.42%) have demonstrated the highest growth.

Earlier we noted that the capitalization of the USDT stablecoin exceeded $6 billion for the first time. A number of analysts attribute the increase of the number of Tether tokens to the rise in bitcoin price.

 ETH exchange balance reaches its maximum since 2016

Since the end of last year, the volume of ethereum stored on trading platforms has increased by 21% to 18.187 million ETH.

According to Glassnode, this is the highest level since December 2016 and it accounts for 16% of all circulating coins. Interestingly, the indicator is inversely correlated with the price of ETH. Thus, for 12 months from December 2016, Ethereum has risen in price from $6 to $ 1,350 — at the same time, the cryptocurrency exchange balance has decreased from 18 to 8 million coins.

On March 13, the ETH price fell to $95, which was the lowest since December 2018. Now the coin is trading near the $154 mark.

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