Good morning and welcome to our rolling coverage of all things cryptocurrency, including price, regulation, innovation and financial crime. Despite strong performances yesterday, bitcoin slipped back into making a loss as an uncertain market attempted to float the price. Bitcoin fell 0.51 percent to trade at $6,322.46, having lost $200 on the day. Traders are still uncertain on how the Securities and Exchange Commission will ultimately decide on the proposed Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF).
The longer the debate drags on for, the lower bitcoin prices are expected to slide. Thai regulators announced Thursday, August 16, that they have so far approved seven business entities to conduct cryptocurrency operations as part of the formalization of the country’s domestic market.
In a statement, Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (Thai SEC) confirmed Bitcoin Co. Ltd. (BX), Bitkub Online Co. Ltd., Cash2coins Co. Ltd., Group Co. Ltd. (TDAX), and Coin Asset Co. Ltd. were able to operate as legal cryptocurrency exchanges. In addition, the regulator approved two cryptocurrency dealers: Coins TH Co. Ltd. and Digital Coin Co. Ltd. (ThaiWM).
The move forms part of a package of “transitional” rules governing crypto businesses operating in Thailand prior to the first tranche of regulations that came into force May 14. Paolo Passeri, Global Solutions Architect, Netskope says: “New academic research from Aachen University has revealed that CoinHive, an embedded cryptocurrency miner, is generating $250,000 in Monero cryptocurrency every month. But this wasn’t the only finding, the research also revealed just ten individuals benefitted from the mining within the region of 80 percent of the generated currency going to them. The Monero currency is the coin of choice for miners for a string of reasons: it offers better privacy, and its CryptoNight algorithm design is conducive to running well on consumer-grade CPUs.”
“As mining schemes continue to be effective there is little standing in the way of those making major profits. The research highlights that public lists used to detect miners, NoCoin being an example, are actually highly ineffective, with 82% of the researchers’ test samples slipping by undetected. Oversights in these kinds of tech means that the most effective method of stopping miners is to block the execution of code with plugins.
Ripple wants to target the Chinese market with its distributed ledger technology designed to speed up cross-border payments, an executive at the firm told CNBC. “China is definitely of interest, it is definitely a target,” Jeremy Light, vice president of European Union strategic accounts at Ripple, told CNBC in a phone interview. “China is definitely a country and region of interest.”
Earlier this year, the blockchain company struck a deal with Hong Kong-based financial services firm LianLian International, aimed at powering the latter’s cross-border transactions between China, the U.S. and Europe. It is not clear whether Ripple’s technology is being deployed by LianLian yet.
Online Blockchain PLC, a UK Blockchain company, has announced it will take a 35 percent stake in gaming team Encryptic Gaming Inc. Online Blockchain will be investing up to US$100k in cash, over a period of time-based upon development milestones being reached by Encryptid Gaming Inc. The investment will help Encryptic Gaming develop new crypto-gaming systems. The first game is Cybernetika, a futuristic world with roving robot-like creatures that can be trained, upgraded and put into tournament-style battles.
Kevin Murcko, CEO of crypto exchange CoinMetro believes cryptocurrencies are still trying to find their true value. Mr Murcko said: “The market is experiencing a readjustment as it tries to find the ‘true or underlying value’ of each crypto asset. For instance, there have been a number of studies examining the cost to mine a single Bitcoin, with $6,000 being the mean.
“Large mining operations will not sell below their cost to produce, which over time creates a true value or ultimate low in the market. Until there are other proven values attached to a specific asset, the low resistance point will revolve around this cost of production. Current BTC price, which is floating around that $6,000 mark [currently $6,350], is a reflection of all of this.
“Besides the hard cost of mining, there are plenty of other market influencers. Use cases can drive adoption, which in turn increases demand, transactions, cost to mine, and ultimately leads to higher prices. You will also have outside circumstances, like the bull run of 2017, that propel prices outside of this market-induced range.
“This is common across all markets, such as when a stock price doesn’t accurately reflect earnings, or the dot-com bubble, when stocks with negative balance sheets traded at extreme valuation levels.”