Large-cap cryptocurrencies may have had a stellar 2017, but 2018 hasn’t been so kind.
Among crypto assets with over $1 billion in invested value, Ripple’s XRP cryptocurrency may have been the biggest disappointment to newer investors, declining sharply amid heightened scrutiny after a period in which it became an industry darling for new investors.
Still, XRP was far from alone in its sizable declines.
Bitcoin forks saw a similar sell-off, with bitcoin cash (BCH), which forked from the network in August, and bitcoin gold, which quickly followed, falling sharply amid a broad market decline.
- January performance: -49.56 percent
- All-time high: $3.84 hit on Jan. 4
- Price on Jan. 1: $2.39
- Price on Jan. 31: $1.16
- Rank as per market capitalization: 3
Entering January, it’s safe to say investors were high on XRP.
A key product for one of the most well-known industry startups, the digital asset won no shortage of favor from investors enamored by its goal of disrupting an oligopolistic global payments industry.
And the company provided fresh reasons for the interest. By the time XRP had become the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency, three of the top five money transfer companies worldwide were said to be in the process of implementing XRP in their payment flow systems.
However, as the month progressed, the optimism failed to keep XRP bid.
A rumored listing on Coinbase never happened, and this, coupled with a broader market weakness weighed heavily over XRP. As of now, XRP is changing hands at $0.89 – a figure that’s down almost 80 percent from its record high.
- January performance: -41.29 percent
- All-time high: $4,355.62 hit on Dec. 20
- Price on Jan. 1: $2,432.54
- Price on Jan. 31: $1,486.89
- Rank as per market capitalization: 4
Bitcoin cash (BCH), a fork of the cryptocurrency bitcoin, soared in the fourth quarter of 2017, as investors took note of the faster transaction speed and low fees.
Not only that, its surprise listing on Coinbase’s GDAX exchange in December boosted its appeal, while cryptocurrency exchange CoinEx implemented bitcoin cash as its default currency in January.
Still, it wasn’t all green for BCH, as it dropped 41.29 percent last month, possibly due to fears of stricter regulations in South Korea and China, the latter region being one from which it draws the majority of its support.
As of writing, BCH is trading at $1,169, down around 72 percent from its all-time high.
- January performance: -40.02 percent
- All-time high: $488.57 hit on Dec. 20
- Price on Jan. 1: $272.91
- Price on Jan. 31: $156.96
- Rank as per market capitalization: 23
Created via a fork of bitcoin in mid-November, bitcoin gold (BTG) surged to record highs in 2017.
Still, despite the temporary highs, in its initial days, it was perhaps the most unloved of bitcoin’s many forks. Back then, the investor community felt BTG was overvalued with few (or no) apparent use cases.
Entering January, it seems that sentiment won out, as BTG was one of the worst performers in January amid broad market sell-off.
As of writing, BTG is trading at $108, down 78 percent from lifetime high.
MoneyGram’s New Time Remittance Technology backed by Visa not Ripple
A new service introduced by remittance giant (MoneyGram) which allows users to send and receive money in real-time has been credited to visa and not the work of its blockchain-based partner (Ripple) in an announcement by representatives of the company.
The recently launched Fastsend, a new service which allows clients to send money in real-time to a phone number through a mobile application or dedicated website. While responding to enquiries from news sources about the latest concept, it was revealed to much surprise that MoneyGram did not make use of the technology of Ripple to achieve the latest product.
Do we need blockchain for real-time settlements?
MoneyGram Chief Operating Officer, Kamila Chytil informed news sources that FastSend makes use of Visa’s Direct Original Credit Transaction to send funds to bank accounts making use of Debit card deposit which is clearly not blockchain-backed or related.
Without the need for DLT, the dedicated website and app make use of an open-source cloud-based microservices. Chytil further stated that although Ripple is not involved in the new product, the firm still makes use of Ripple’s blockchain in other fields of the company.
Also, Chytil made mention of MoneyGram’s continuous effort on how to utilize blockchain in areas where it could assist to solve data privacy and regulatory obligations via distributed ledger technology. In her remarks, she spoke highly of DLT technology and cryptocurrencies, stating that the firm believes blockchain to be the future of global cross border payments and transfer of money.
As MoneyGram continues to research on the multiple use cases in order to tap into Ripple’s tools while integrating with the recent version of Ripple’s service suit to introduce cash-out service to all network members.
It is worth noting that Ripple is gaining increased support and approval among financial institutions to provide them with its DLT services in Africa with the National Bank of Egypt joining its network, this has been seen as a welcome development as it would do well for the inward remittance within the region the Ripple Network.
Nigeria Calls For an Extension of the Time Set for the Eco Currency Launch for West Africa
Nigeria, the country with the largest economy in Africa calls for a delay in the progression of Eco Currency.
Nigeria on Monday has expressed her view on the issues of the progress made so far in the creation and official use of the Eco currency for the West African region.
According to the Presidential Tweet on twitter;
“Nigeria’s position on the Eco is that the convergence criteria (between states) have not been met by the majority of countries” which will adopt this common currency”
“There, therefore, has to be an extension of time on the take-off of the single currency,”
Nigeria has its own currency, the Naira.
The Eco single currency has been a controversial issue since the idea was initiated. It was after more than 25 meetings on the subject, that the 15 member countries of the Community of West African States (ECOWAS), finalized that it would be launched in 2020.
There is currently eight out of the 15 ECOWAS countries using the CFA franc, but were looking to cut financial ties from France, their former colonial power.
The height of the controversy followed after President Ouattara of Ivory Coast all of a sudden denounced CFA for the francophone countries for the Eco currency following Emmanuel Macron’s visit to the country.
Nigeria, a member of ECOWAS, and some other Anglophone West African countries denounced the agreement. This is because the monetary policies governing the issue of Eco currency doesn’t align with the requirements adopted in the region to set up the single currency.
Written By Ogbuowelu Anthony Uchechukwu
Yahoo Finance Adds Cryptocurrency Market Data on its Website
US based financial news firm, Yahoo Finance has partnered with Coinmarketcap to add cryptocurrency market data on its website amongst other financial reporting data.
The data which is supplied by the popular cryptocurrency market data aggregator Coinmarketcap now allow visitors on the website to track the prices of cryptocurrencies daily.
Currently available on the website are 118 cryptocurrencies ranked in the order of their market capitalization. The price data on the website are denomination in USD.
The website has a feature which it calls Heatmap View. It allows visitors to see the price actions on each crypto assets. A red signal shows the asset has dipped while a green signal reveals a gain in the asset.
Registered users can add any cryptocurrency to their portfolios.
Just like coinmarketcap reports, the Yahoo Finance website also reports detailed information on each cryptocurrency it has listed in its website.
The website reports on each website various market data such as current price, changes in percentage and amount, market capitalization, volume and circulating supply.
Yahoo finance also have individual pages for each cryptocurrency listed on the website. Yahoo Finance was quoted saying “We are thrilled about this partnership which comes timely as we continue to level up our game with the new liquidity-based metrics for ranking market-pairs and an improved pricing algorithm coming soon.”
Other than data from Coinmarketcap, Yahoo Finance also have two indices Crypto 200 (including Bitcoin) and Crypto 200 EX (i.e. excluding Bitcoin)
The data on the website incorporates pricing from over 200 exchanges, according to the Finance reporting organization, the indices provide exposure to the broader cryptocurrency market by including the cryptocurrencies that represent more than 90% of global market capitalization as of the index launch date.
Its daily newsletter and blog content will also be integrated into the news stream on finance site’s cryptocurrency screener landing page as well as the individual cryptocurrency pages.
The firm said in the future, it will plan to produce more educational video features, which it hopes will further add to the educational content on the website.
Image: Yahoo Finance
Facebook to launch Facebook Pay to Provide Users With Secure and Convenient Payment Experience
Is Facebook Pay an alternative to Libra?
Facebook has announced it will be launching the Facebook Pay service to provide people with a convenient, secure and consistent payment experience across its platform.
According to Facebook, people already use payments across its platform to shop, donate to causes and send money to each other. The Facebook pay will make these economic events easier while continuing to ensure user transaction information is secure and protected.
In order to use the service, users are to add their preferred payment method once and then use the service where it is available to make payments and purchases on the facebook’s platform apps. This will ensure users are not inconvenience as they wouldn’t be required to enter their payment information again.
The Facebook Pay will be available on Facebook and Messenger this week for US customers for fundraising, in-game payments, and event tickets, person-to-person payments on Messenger and purchases from select pages and businesses on Facebook marketplace.
According to Facebook, over time, the service will become available to more people and places including on its Instagram and WhatsApp platforms.
Facebook iterates its desire to continue investment in security of its platform.
Facebook said “We designed Facebook Pay to securely store and encrypt your card and bank account numbers, perform anti-fraud monitoring on our systems to detect unauthorized activity and provide notifications for account activity”.
To the Future
The Facebook Pay is part of our ongoing work to make commerce more convenient, Facebook said and this also will make it accessible and secure for people on its app.
And it will continue to develop Facebook Pay and look for ways to make it even more valuable for people on our apps.
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