Total crypto market cap added $5 billion during last week and now sits at $138. TRON, Cardano, and Litecoin are the biggest gainers among top ten currencies with two-digit raises while ETH and BCH made a slight downward correction.
The Bitcoin bulls have been successfully defending the $3,800 territory since December 28, 2018, when we last saw price below this level. The bad news is that $4,200 and above levels are still out of reach and looks like current volumes are not enough to trigger a major trend reversal.
The biggest cryptocurrency dropped below $4,000 on January 3, 2019, after losing approximately three percent of its value. Trading volumes for BTC-USD were stable above $3 billion and the pair managed to close the workweek at $3,956 on January 4.
The number one cryptocurrency could not choose any direction during the trading day on January 5 and continued hovering in the $3,900 to $3,954 area. A sudden spike in price, however, resulted in a 6.8 percent increase and move above $4,000 on January 6. BTC closed the session at $4,168 – above $4k for the first time since December 25, 2018, and up with 4.8 percent for the seven-day period.
BTC-USD lost $60 of its value on January 7 and dropped from $4,170 to $4,110 on the Bitfinex daily chart. The pair closed January 8 with another red candle on the daily chart, this time with an insignificant loss of approximately $10. The negligible losses could be a sign that bear pressure is minimal at this point as the biggest cryptocurrency is looking for another breakout to levels above $4,200.
On January 9, The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published its Advice to the European Union (EU) Institutions – Commission, Council and Parliament – on initial coin offerings (ICOs) and cryptoassets suggesting more in-depth analysis of the market to fill current gaps in terms of how these instruments are regulated.
According to the official document, the crypto market is still too small to pose a risk in terms of financial stability, but the ESMA is still looking to counter money laundering and ensure investor protection and market integrity.
“[That] the European Commission carry out further analysis to determine the appropriate EU-level response.“
In Ukraine, however, authorities believe that overregulation prevents crypto development. According to Mikhail Vidyakin, the director of the strategy and reform department of National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) there is too much chaos in how cryptocurrencies are regulated, and what the country needs are a clear framework and regulations that allow the market to grow.
Bitcoin closed its third consecutive day of losses on January 9 and fell to $4,080 after touching $4,000 during the trading session. At the time of press, BTC is trading at ~$3,829 according to CoinMarketCap.
Are the Russian billions going to trigger the next bull run as suggested by Vladislav Ginko, a lecturer at Moscow’s Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration?
Ethereum continued to be one of the best-performing currencies in the top 100 and the ETH-USD pair successfully defended the $150 level despite losing 4.4 percent on January 3. On the next day, January 4, it managed to regain some territory and closed the day at $158.
The second biggest cryptocurrency in terms on market cap, could not break above $160 and made no significant price movements on January 5. On January 6, however, it finally managed to cross the $160 mark and closed at this price, previously touching $165 during intraday.
The Ethereum foundation announced in a blog post from January 7 it will grant $5 million to Parity Technologies for scalability, usability, and security work. The provided funds will be used on “Parity’s work on the Casper project, sharding, light clients, developer tools, QA, audits and infrastructure improvements.”
Ethereum dropped 3.7 percent and closed at $154 on January 7. It fell as low as $145 during the next day’s trading session and closed the January 8 session at $152.7, a little more than a one percent loss. The second biggest cryptocurrency is now looking to hold $150 in order to set the ground for $175 to $183 prior to the planned fork.
The trading session on January 9 ended with little to no change for the ETH price as it is still holding the $150 level (at $152). We are now close to breaking the upward trend started on December 15, 2018. At the time of press, ETH is trading at ~$134 according to CoinMarketCap.
The Ripple company token dropped below the $0.38 support on January 3 after registering seven percent gains during the previous two days. It made almost no moves on January 4 and stayed in the $0.367 zone while bulls were hoping to avoid further decline towards $0.35.
During the weekend of January 5 to 6, observers saw the XRP-USD first dropping to $0.36 on Saturday, then quickly recovering to $0.377. The move resulted in a 1.5 percent decline for the week.
In an official announcement, Ripple reported its RippleNet payment network (which facilitates cross-border financial transactions on the blockchain) has surpassed 200 customers worldwide after 13 new financial institutions joined the platform. According to company CEO Brad Garlinghouse the achievement is a direct response to critics who claimed that “financial institutions would never use a digital asset in their payment flows.”
In the light of the recent 51% attack on the ETC network, David Schwartz, CTO at Ripple, noted that the XRP Ledger isn’t susceptible to double spend attacks, as its “distributed agreement protocol” eliminates that risk.
XRP moved lower on January 7 stopping at $0.373 and could not rebound on January 8 when it peaked at $0.382 during the trading session before closing the day at $0.374. The third most valuable cryptocurrency moved to $0.376 on January 9 in its second day of gains as commentators once again open the door for $0.38. At the time of press, XRP is trading at ~$0.347891 according to CoinMarketCap.