Bitcoin, Ether, and XRP Weekly Market Update: September 21, 2018
BTC closed the day with a solid gain of more than $160 on September 13, touching the $6,500 level. Traders pushed the price even higher on September 14, but the biggest cryptocurrency could not keep the momentum and closed below the $6,500 mark (at $6,480). Trading volume was above $5 billion during the last two days of the workweek.
Reports circulated that after Citigroup, another U.S. bank, Morgan Stanley, is looking to offer bitcoin trading for its clients. Investors will be able to buy or sell BTC using a synthetic instrument called a price return swap.
Another Wall Street institution – Bank of America (through the bank’s wealth management division Merril Lynch) is also preparing a Bitcoin investment product that allows clients to trade based on the futures markets in aggregate, according to reports. These BTC derivatives, linked to non-deliverable forwards (NDFs), represent an outright future contract by which counterparts settle the difference on the contracted NDF price and the current spot price on an agreed notional amount.
Bitcoin broke the psychological resistance near $6,500 on September 15 and closed the day at $6,512, eyeing $6,600 and eventually $6,800 as major resistance before $7,000.
The European Central Bank (ECB), however, was not that quick to embrace digital currencies after its president Mario Draghi told the European Parliament a “substantial development” is still needed in the underlying technology behind cryptocurrencies before the Central Bank would consider using them.
“The ECB and the Eurosystem currently have no plans to issue a central bank digital currency,” and Draghi added, “[Nonetheless], we are carefully analyzing the potential consequences of issuing such a currency as a complement to cash.”
Without a doubt, the biggest news for the last week was Binance (one of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in terms of volume) founder Changpeng “CZ” Zhao “accidentally” revealing plans to launch a fiat-to-crypto exchange in Singapore with closed beta tests starting September 18.
Binance is also reportedly looking to open additional fiat exchange in Malta and every continent soon.
This news did not cause any significant change in BTC price direction, and it showed stability in the $6,400 to $6,500 range, rarely dipping below the $6,400 mark during the weekend. Bitcoin closed September 16 at $6,499, 4.6 percent up for the week.
The new week started with BTC-USD in a definite downturn since the morning hours on September 17. The oldest cryptocurrency lost $345 of its value reaching $6,203 before the end of business day in Europe. It managed to push the price above $6,300 in the evening, but the $6,200 support line re-test was dangerously close.
The New York Attorney General warned in a report on September 19 that three well-known crypto exchanges (Gate.io, Binance, and Kraken) may be breaking the law and referred to the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) for investigation of a near-total lack of oversight and regulation, a lack of protection from abusive trading practices, and limited safeguarding of users’ funds.
Good or bad, the news did not have any effect on BTC price as it remained stable in the $6,200 to $6,400 corridor for the day, trading close to the $6,400 level on September 20. In the late evening though, Bitcoin broke the $6,500 level and reached $6,700 in the morning hours of September 21. BTC is now up five percent since yesterday. Next target upwards is $6,800, then $7,000.
Ethereum was 15 percent up on September 13 ($211), and after a small correction the following day, it managed to extend the gains on September 15 adding another six percent ($221). We saw a significant spike in trading volumes for ETH during that period, from $2.4 billion on September 13 to $3.7 billion on September 14, suggesting immense trader activity for the biggest altcoin.
ETH continued to trade above $220 (at $221) on September 16, 12 percent up for the week. The sharp decline experienced by the crypto market at the beginning of the new week did not spare ether, and it fell by a little more than 11 percent, erasing some $25 of its value.
In the morning hours of September 18 Ethereum registered a sudden spike in trading volume peaking at $8.7 billion between 09:00 CET and 09:20 CET. This resulted in price change from $196 to $211 in a matter of hours.
ETH remained stable and closed the day above the $200 level. According to the more experienced traders and crypto influencers, the change in volume and price was more likely caused by a group of investors pushing for a corrective rally, after ETH recorded a steep decline from $220 to $190.
Ethereum fell as low as $200 during September 19 trading day and peaked at $213, trading close to the $210 level on September 20.
It initiated a short run upwards in the late evening on the same day and peaked at $229 on September 21, adding more than eight percent for the last 24 hours.
Next target for the bulls will be $230, however, the author believes that ETH will eventually run out of steam and make a short correction to $210 to 220. Bears will need to once again push the price below the $200 resistance.
XRP successfully defended the $0.27 support line on September 13 and closed the day with substantial gains (3.7 percent), stopping at $0.279. The Ripple company token traded mostly in the $0.275 to $0.281 range for the next three days and managed to avoid sudden price changes. XRP was up 1.8 percent for the week.
On September 17 price was pushed back down to $0.27033 in the most significant one day drop of the last ten days. A series of good news involving XRP and Ripple hit the market in the last days of the previous week.
Japanese banking group SBI Holdings, in collaboration with Ripple Labs Inc., announced on September 15, they will be launching MoneyTap, a mobile payments app powered by Ripple’s blockchain-based payment system.
On September 16, news came out for a partnership with the National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia (NCB), the biggest bank in the country. NCB will use RippleNet to connect to other financial institutions, facilitating a faster and more transparent international payment service for its customers.
Lastly, Sagar Sarbhai, head of Ripple’s regulatory relations in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East regions, hinted in an interview for CNBC, that the xRapid product, could launch in as soon as a month. xRapid uses the public XRP cryptocurrency for settlement, which Ripple says enhances the speed off cross-border currency transfers.
XRP volume saw some severe movement from $260 million to $600 million between 13:35 CET and 18:45 CET on September 18. The price moved rapidly up from $0.273 to $0.332, a 17 percent gain since the previous day, then made a small retrace to $0.318.
The Ripple fundamentals were just too strong to ignore with positive news flowing.
On September 19, PNC Bank, one of the biggest banks in the United States in terms of assets was reported to be joining Ripple’s enterprise blockchain network RippleNet (global payments network of over 100 institutions including financial services providers). According to the company, RippleNet will enable “PNC’s commercial clients to receive payments from overseas banks in real time.
XRP was trading between $0.315 and $0.330 on September 19 and continued its run on September 20 reaching $0.41 in the late evening trading. The Ripple token extended gains on September 21 and is now up 40 percent for the last 24h (as of 14:00 CET), sitting at $0.46. It is 65 percent up for the previous seven days.
Naturally, the next target will be the psychological level at $0.50, but correction to the $0.46 to $0.445 corridor before $0.40 or even $0.30 is in the cards given the rapid price increase, which is driven mainly by the euphoria from the the recent news and potential profit taking decision by investors.