It’s hard to believe that it was just 5 days ago that Bitcoin hit an all time high and smashed the $20,000 mark last Sunday!
This was the week that was!
From its Sunday high, Bitcoin dropped more than 34%, to a price less than $13200, at 3.20am Friday, GMT , last night!
Interestingly, it’s bounced around over night and it just bottomed again at $13200 at 7.00am today.
Stop Press: Bitcoin Friday 2.20 – now gone to $11089.
Stop Press: Bitcoin Friday 20.45 – looking better at $14020.
There are unresolved problems with Bitcoin’s infrastructure which have caused intense civil war in the cryptocurrency community.
Bitcoin buyers have been trying to use Bitcoin for purchases, only to run into the the network’s absurdly high transaction fees.
Those fees have risen steadily for years due to crowding on the network.
The long-running fight over how to fix the issue hit the mainstream as never before yesterday, when cryptocurrency pioneer Roger Ver appeared on CNBC.
Ver was promoting Bitcoin Cash, a fork of Bitcoin created to address the digital currency’s scaling problems.
Ver warned viewers that Bitcoin could see “a mass exodus of people rushing for the door.”
Almost simultaneously, the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase announced that it had halted trading in Bitcoin Cash over concerns that the exchanges’ employees may have engaged in insider trading—another possible shock to investor confidence.
The conflicts and imperfections of the cryptocurrency world are nothing new, and neither are huge price dips—Bitcoin has seen two similarly sharp drops in just the last two months.
Long-term supporters are optimistic that fixes for the underlying crowding issue, particularly a new feature known as Lightning Network, are on the way.
The more pressing question, though, is whether a mass of new investors, attracted by this year’s massive price run-up, will stick with Bitcoin through such big short-term losses.
To further muddy the waters, Charlie Lee sold all of his personal holdings of Litecoin during the week causing major consternation in the cryptocurrency space amongst those that could not accept that this might make an awful lot of sense.
He is still running the company and is independently wealthy now so it’s understandable that he might want to separate personal Litecoin ownership, from his role developing and promoting LTC, avoiding any conflicts of interest henceforth.
Ripple looks to be just about the best place to be right now. The price peaked last night at $1.24 before falling over to $0.72 at 7.20 am.
The price now – 20.50 GMT – has recovered to around $1.00.
Ripple positions itself as a complement to, rather than a competitor with, Bitcoin – the site has a page dedicated to Ripple for Bitcoiners.
Ripple is a distributed network which means transactions occur immediately across the network and, as it is peer to peer, the network is resilient to systemic risk.
Ripples aren’t mined – unlike bitcoin and its peers – but each transaction destroys a small amount of XRP which adds a deflationary measure into the system. There are 100 billion XRP at present.
Ripple Cheat Sheet – This says it all!