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All You Need To Know To Decide If This Crypto Is Worth the Investment

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Cryptocurrencies have become increasingly popular lately and this trend shows no signs of slowing down. With all the talk about these digital assets, you may be wondering if this is the right time to invest. Before you pull the trigger, however, it’s always a good idea to understand the underlying asset. Cryptocurrency is no exception and is very different from investing in stocks or bonds.

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Hence, we’re going to cover a popular blockchain technology called Ethereum (ETH). Like many blockchains, Ethereum has a native coin called Ether. Let’s take a closer look at what Ethereum is and whether you should consider investing.

Read: Dogecoin: Is It Worth Investing?

What is ethereum

Ethereum is an open source, decentralized one Blockchain technology. The native coin of Ethereum is called Ether. This coin is one of the largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, second only to Bitcoin (BTC). Although Ether has a smaller market capitalization than Bitcoin, Ethereum is the most widely used blockchain.

See: What Is Chainlink And Why Is It Important In The Cryptocurrency World?

With Ethereum, it is important to understand that it is not the same as Bitcoin. While Bitcoin’s purpose is primarily to be a digital currency, Ethereum is much broader. In fact, Ethereum is an open source operating system and computing platform. It also supports distributed applications (dApps) and smart contracts.

Another important aspect of Ethereum is that it allows for decentralized funding, which is an important part of how the system works. Since the system is inherently decentralized, there is not a single entity that controls it or the value of the ether.

More: How the IRS Taxes Cryptocurrency – and the Loophole That Can Lower Your Tax Bill

What is Ethereum worth?

As with many cryptocurrencies, the price of ether has fluctuated significantly since its introduction in 2015. At the time, the price was around $ 1 and stayed there for several months. The price hit $ 1,358 in January 2018, the highest price ever. The price began to fall, as did the price of many cryptocurrencies; Ether bottomed at $ 83 in December 2018.

The story goes on

The price has ebbed and flowed since then, but has increased overall. At the beginning of April 2020, the price was around $ 140; and on May 18, it’s around $ 3,349, according to Coindesk. That’s a pretty sharp increase in just over a year.

Read: Breaking Down The Basics Of Cryptocurrency

Should you invest in Ethereum?

If you decide to invest in Ether (and therefore Ethereum), the first thing you should ask yourself is why you are investing. Although the price of the coin has increased significantly over the past year, it can be extremely volatile. So if you buy ether hoping the price will go up, you can get frustrated.

On the other hand, the Etherum blockchain can be used for many different applications, said Tally Greenberg, Head of Business Development at Allnodes. “Ether is the cryptocurrency required for any transaction carried out on Ethereum, a blockchain network of applications. A blockchain, on the other hand, is a technology with unlimited potential. It doesn’t rest on Ethereum alone and can be used to make a difference with or without cryptocurrencies in our future. “

See: 10 Best Cryptocurrencies To Invest In 2021

Sam Bretzmann, the owner of Block link, agrees with this feeling. “The difference is that instead of investing in individual projects that make it or not, you can invest in the infrastructure. So you can think about going back to 1999 and instead of trying to see which emerging companies will survive, you can just pick ‘the internet’ and invest in it. “

This article is part of GOBankingRates’ ‘Economy Explained’ series to help readers navigate the complexities of our financial system.

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Last updated: May 18, 2021

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Ethereum: Everything You Need To Know To Decide If This Crypto Is Worth Investing

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Cryptocurrency

American Banks Encouraged To Partner with Cryptocurrency Firms

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A recent report by the ABA (American Bankers Association) suggests that banks are partnering with cryptocurrency firms because of the growing customer interest and profit in the sector.

This 20-page report offers a detailed analysis of the crypto, including a glossary. It also maps cryptocurrency activities to banking services and products. The banking association also proposes crypto use cases for the banking sector with regulatory issues and revenue models for the use case.

Related reading | Vitalik Buterin urges Ethereum to grow beyond DApps

The report covers four different categories of crypto assets: CBDC (Central Bank Digital Currency), cryptocurrencies, non-fungible tokens and stablecoins. Defi (Decentralized Finance) was also mentioned.

Use cases and regulations for cryptocurrencies

According to the report, some of the use cases of crypto in the banking sector include the following:

  • Stores of Value – Banks can generate income by making it easier to buy and sell crypto on their platforms.
  • Custody account / wallet provider – banks can offer digital wallets and charge service fees for them.
  • Interest-bearing accounts – Banks can earn an interest fee by making loan transactions easier to investors.
  • Lending – Banks can offer their customers loans in cryptocurrency and charge a fee for it
  • Payments – Banks may charge fees such as B. for credit or debit cards
  • Broker-dealer banks can collect spreads from crypto-asset transactions and generate income
  • Exchange trading – banks can generate income from transaction fees, deposit fees, listing fees, etc.
  • Network utility banks can offer utility tokens and generate income by creating and selling them.
  • Insurance – Banks can increase insurance premiums by spreading risk among different investors.
  • Asset management banks may charge customers a crypto portfolio management fee.

Another aspect of the report concerns crypto regulations. It focused on requirements related to selling or offering crypto, tax reporting, and money transfer. According to the report, the SEC regulated the sale of cryptocurrency.

The crypto market appears to be rising 4% on the daily chart | Source: Crypto Total Market Cap on TradingView.com

The FinCEN regulates this for every money transfer and requires the operators to register for the MSB and MTL, Money Services Business and Money Transmitter licenses. But tax reporting is on the IRS’s table.

However, it has also been pointed out that there is still no clarity on crypto regulation. According to the report, such unclear regulations can create different or unclear requirements. DeFi, gamification and many environmental issues were also mentioned as risks to the cryptocurrency industry.

What can be the way forward?

According to the report, banks are very interested in the crypto industry. Their goal is to identify the opportunities to offer their clients exposure to these assets.

Currently, growing customer interest in crypto is driving banks to look for ways to offer cryptocurrency products. There was also a reference to the NYDIG survey which found that 80% of BTC would transfer their assets to banks.

Related reading | Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin spotted with Hollywood stars

As the report notes, banks should partner with cryptocurrency companies and accept their customers as customers.

On the flip side, banks will access payment systems to take fiat deposits on board and outsource them. The report also went further, suggesting partnerships that could work between the two sectors.

Featured image from Pixabay, chart from TradingView.com

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Why Web 3.0 Tokens Might Be the Next Hot Trade in Cryptocurrencies

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With Bitcoin prices stuck in a month-long queue, some cryptocurrency traders are speculating about what may be the next hot market bet: digital assets linked to visions of a decentralized internet, colloquially known as Web 3.0 tokens.

Data tracked by Messari and published by Jeff Dorman, Arca Chief Investment Officer, shows that the cryptocurrency subsector “Web 3.0 tokens” increased 22% in the week ending August 1st, and Bitcoin and everyone else Subsectors, including non-fungible tokens, are dwarfed (NFTs). Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market value, gained 10%.

For the year to date, tokens related to decentralized internet applications have seen an average increase of 244%, lagging the 2.726% increase of the NFT subsector but surpassing Bitcoin’s appreciation by 37%.

Related: Market Wrap: Bitcoin and Ether rise on bullish sentiment

Some of the best-known Web 3.0 coins, like Livepeer (LPT), Helium (HNT), and BitTorrent (BTT), have soared at least 800% this year despite a collapse in cryptocurrency markets since April, according to Messari.

“Seeing the Web 3.0 ecosystem grow exponentially since the beginning of the year and keep most of its profits even after the surrender in May is very positive for the crypto market,” Nick Mancini, research analyst for Trade The Chain told CoinDesk. “Higher prices are directly linked to increased demand and expansion of services in each shift, and this allows the ecosystem to continue to grow.”

Web 3.0 refers to a paradigm shift for the Internet operated by network subscribers worldwide and defined by a set of open, trust-minimized and decentralized networks and protocols that offer services such as computing, storage, bandwidth, finance and identity.

For example, the Ethereum-based Livepeer protocol provides a marketplace for video infrastructure providers and streaming applications, while Filecoin and The Graph provide decentralized file storage and data management networks. Helium uses blockchains and tokens to motivate consumers and small businesses to deploy and validate wireless coverage and transfer device data over the network.

The story goes on

Related: Bitcoin News Update for August 4, 2021

Messaris Tracker reveals that the Web 3.0 token subsector, spanning over 40 coins, has an overall market valuation of $ 25 billion, excluding Oracle provider Chainlink. (The Oracle provider is widely associated with decentralized financing and has a market capitalization of $ 10 billion).

However, looking at prominent projects like The Graph, Filecoin, Helium, and Livepeer, the market capitalization of Web 3.0 tokens is less than $ 15 billion. That’s only 2% of Bitcoin’s total market cap of $ 735 billion. But it’s comparable to the size of the Decentralized Finance Area (DeFi) a year ago. Messari data shows the DeFi subsector now has 137 assets and is worth over $ 50 billion.

Waiting for mainstream attention

While the Web 3.0 tokens far outperformed Bitcoin and other big coins this year, the sector has yet to experience the euphoria or attention of the mainstream that Bitcoin, Ethereum, DeFi, NFT and even Ethereum Layer 2 projects have seen since October 2020 have received .

That’s probably because the underlying technology is relatively complex.

“Web 3 is not as easy to understand as DeFi, and it is probably 12 months behind DeFi in terms of mainstream notoriety,” said Kyle Samani, co-founder and managing partner of Multicoin Capital. “We expect this to change as consumer-facing applications based on NFTs, social tokens and creator monetization increase over the next 12 months, such as Audius, Mirror and many others.”

The DeFi boom began a year ago and has remained intact to this day. The market capitalization of this sector has grown from around $ 5 billion in early 2020 to over $ 50 billion at press time.

Samani is confident that Web 3.0 tokens will catch up as DeFi gets a bad rap at times. however, there is no negativity associated with the idea of ​​a decentralized internet. Recently, Dan Berkovitz, commissioner for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), said DeFi derivatives could be illegal in the US

“Nobody really says that The Graph, an indexing protocol for querying networks like Ethereum and Solana and IPFS, is bad, while many people in the existing financial system say DeFi is bad,” Samani said. “As awareness of Web 3 grows, it’s hard to see anything other than general support and enthusiasm.”

Institutions chip-in

While mainstream adoption is still at least a year away, capital investors are putting money into Web 3.0 tokens. According to the official website, Multicoin Capital is invested in The Graph, Helium and Livepeer.

Grayscale, the world’s largest digital asset manager and the preferred place for institutional investors to grapple with digital assets, launched a Livepeer Trust in March. Rayhaneh Sharif-Askary, director of investor relations at Grayscale Investments, told CoinDesk last month that investors are diversifying into Web 3.0 tokens.

“It is a diversification within the asset class, whether investors want to use Bitcoin as a store of value or Ethereum for smart contracts,” said Sharif-Askary.

“And then the other applications build on top of these networks and solve other real-world problems,” she said, adding that Grayscale’s Livepeer Trust is structurally identical to the groundbreaking Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) (Grayscale is a unit of Digital Currency Group, an investment holding company that is also the parent company of CoinDesk.)

Livepeer’s LPT token is up 1,050% this year. The log’s weekly revenue increased ten-fold to over $ 10,000 in February through June, according to data provided by Web3Index.

Doug Petkanics, CEO and co-founder of Livepeer, told CoinDesk that online streaming is a $ 70 billion market and accounts for 80% of internet traffic today. In addition, analysts predict the market will grow from $ 70 billion to $ 250 billion over the next five years, Petkanics said. The outlook for The Graph and Ocean Protocol also looks good, as Messari’s second-quarter report said.

Strong use case aside, many of these Web 3.0 tokens offer attractive returns through Staked, a platform that allows investors to generate returns from staking and DeFi without keeping their crypto assets.

For example, Helium’s HNT token currently offers an annualized nominal return of 8.7%, while The Graph’s GRT offers a 15% return and LPT offers a 30% return. The high returns led to a positive sentiment for these tokens, as reflected in the sentiment chart below.

“Traders have felt optimistic about them, which amplifies a network effect,” said Mancini. “Dealers benefit and get involved and in turn tell others about the oversized opportunity.”

The crypto market is much more than Bitcoin

Gone are the days when investors viewed crypto markets as synonymous with Bitcoin. While Bitcoin remains the leading cryptocurrency by market value, the recent underperformance compared to other coins suggests investors are digging deeper into digital asset markets to find investments with faster growth potential.

“Weekly data might not mean much, but if we look at three months, six months and 12 months, there is a clear shift away from Bitcoin to other subsectors, including Web 3.0,” said Jeff Dorman of Arca on a Telegram call .

According to Arcas research note released earlier this week, Bitcoin had “both bad up-capture and bad down-capture” this year. In plain English, Bitcoin struggled to outperform other large coins during the market-wide downturn after mid-April, but was also under-challenged when the market rallied in recent weeks.

According to Dorman, the data shows that some new investors are bypassing Bitcoin and Ether and jumping straight into other subsectors of the industry. Historically, investors have used the top two coins as gateways.

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Cryptocurrency

What’s Bitcoin? A beginner’s guide to the world’s first cryptocurrency

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Bitcoin (BTC-USD) – the world’s first digital currency – has been a hot topic in financial circles, at least in recent years, and it probably doesn’t need to be introduced.

Polls suggest that the majority of Americans have at least heard of it. For laypeople, Bitcoin is a virtual currency (also known as cryptocurrency) that can be exchanged through online transactions and is stored in a digital ledger. Once traded for pennies on the dollar, a unit now costs nearly $ 40,000 with a market capitalization of nearly $ 750 billion.

Although the outlets that accept cryptocurrencies are still limited, Bitcoin is arguably the most easily exchangeable of all cryptocurrencies. A small but growing number of service providers are accepting the virtual currency, which can be used to buy goods in video games, exchange them for US dollars or other fiat currencies, and in some places even pay for goods and services.

Troubled beginnings

Bitcoin was founded in 2008 by an unknown person or group called Satoshi Nakamoto. Although feverish speculation has surrounded Nakamoto’s true identity – and some have claimed to be Nakamoto – it remains unconfirmed.

Nakamoto began working on the code that would eventually serve as the backbone of Bitcoin in 2007. A cryptocurrency whitepaper was first published in 2008 that created the original software reference implementation (the program that set the technical standards for Bitcoin). and served as an effective starting point for the cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin was then created as open source code, meaning virtually anyone could use it. To date, there are an estimated more than 11,000 cryptocurrencies in the market.

Given its libertarian beginnings, the main differentiator of Bitcoin is its decentralized nature. Unlike other forms of payment, no central organization or unit controls the currency or has the power to regulate the creation of more Bitcoin or transactions with it.

The story goes on

Transactions are secured using blockchain technology (more on this below), but no agency has the power to reverse transactions and there is no clearing period before funds can be distributed. It is precisely these characteristics that have raised regulatory concerns about the potential for theft, fraud and illegal transactions.

How it works

Bitcoin mining computer servers can be seen in the Bitminer factory in Florence, Italy, April 6, 2018. Picture from April 6, 2018. REUTERS / Alessandro Bianchi

The process of creating Bitcoin is known as mining. Miners perform intensive computer operations to verify transactions on the Bitcoin network. Mining rewards users for solving complex math problems. Bitcoin uses a “proof-of-work” network that confirms transactions by proving that a certain amount of computational effort has occurred.

Mining requires a significant amount of computing power, which has led to criticism of Bitcoin for the energy-intensive process being bad for the environment – a point recently raised by Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk, who is launching a firestorm in the crypto markets triggered.

Bitcoin uses blockchain technology, an innovation of the 21st century that makes it possible to link transactions via a digital ledger. The cryptocurrency was the first application of this technology, but has since expanded and used in other finance and technology applications.

Price bubbles & volatility

Bitcoin’s price action isn’t for the faint of heart, one reason why critics argue that it’s not stable enough to be a successor to fiat money. And whether or not Bitcoin has intrinsic value has been discussed intensively.

“Bitcoin is not a currency – it is an asset,” said Pavan Sukhdev, president of the environmental protection organization WWF International and former managing director of Deutsche Bank, in a recent interview with Yahoo Finance. He pointed to the extreme volatility and lack of support value as reasons for its illegality.

Eswar Prasad, a professor at Cornell University, was even more blunt. “Bitcoin was developed as a digitally anonymous medium of exchange that did not involve a trusted third party such as a central bank, but Bitcoin failed miserably in its stated goal,” he recently told Yahoo Finance.

For example, in the spring of 2011, the price rose from USD 1 to USD 32 within three months. In November of that year, Bitcoin saw a sharp drop to around $ 2 per coin. This was just the first of many price bubbles to make Bitcoin rise and fall – both fast and strong. And in December 2017, the price of a unit hit a new all-time high of over $ 20,000.

During this time, Bitcoin rose to the mainstream and shaped the first wave of “Bitcoin millionaires” (and later Bitcoin billionaires). The bull market was again volatile, dragging the currency below $ 7,200 in two years.

In this photo, taken in Kiev, Ukraine on April 13, 2021, the price of the virtual cryptocurrency Bitcoin is displayed on a phone screen.  Bitcoin cryptocurrency jumped over $ 60,000, media reported on April 13, 2021 in Kiev, Ukraine.  (Photo illustration by STR / NurPhoto via Getty Images)

In this photo, taken in Kiev, Ukraine on April 13, 2021, the price of the virtual cryptocurrency Bitcoin is displayed on a phone screen. Bitcoin cryptocurrency saw a surge of over $ 60,000, media reported on April 13, 2021 in Kiev, Ukraine. (Photo illustration by STR / NurPhoto via Getty Images)

However, since Bitcoin has now found its sea legs, it gained wider mainstream adoption and benefited from investments from well-known companies and banks. Bitcoin hit an all-time high of over $ 60,000 in April before falling back to just under $ 40,000 in late July.

Tesla, Black Rock, Inc. (BLK), Square (SQ), and BNY Mellon (BK) are just a few of the growing number of large companies that have found a way to break into an expanding marketplace. With more legitimate support, more people than ever have invested in the cryptocurrency.

Investment Opportunity Or Legitimate Currency?

The roller coaster ride of the Bitcoin price is complex and diverse and is increasingly subject to government policy. China has taken crackdown on cryptocurrencies and crypto mining, expressing its displeasure with the subversive nature of a decentralized currency. Since the vast majority of Bitcoin mining takes place there, restrictions on activity in the region can affect the price and contribute to wild swings.

However, the continued enthusiasm for cryptocurrencies in general, as well as a strong fan base, make it likely that Bitcoin will continue to gain acceptance among the public. The annual Bitcoin conference in Miami in 2021 drew 12,000 participants to discuss cryptocurrencies and networks. And some of his most loyal fans have even declared it a religion.

Ihsaan Fanusie is a writer at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @IFanusie.

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