by Jamie Holmes
Perhaps the biggest story of the week was the North California judge ruling that could see Coinbase forced into handing over their client data to the IRS. While some users of bitcoin are suspected to be evading tax, the broad brush stroke of every Coinbase customer is something the company is willing to fight against.
The price of bitcoin almost tested a key critical resistance at $778.85 but fell short, posting a fresh high at $778.07. The market stands just above $750 at the time of writing and as the chart shows below, BTC-USD is at a critical juncture. The Ichimoku indicator suggests a short-term shift to downward momentum. It will be interesting to see if the market breaks below $750 in the days ahead and will point to further losses. Whereas, the green Ichimoku cloud may hold as support and provide another buying opportunity.
This week's review is compiled from contributions by Alexander Lielacher, Christoph Bergmann, Farzana Begum, Michael Scott and Nigel Dollentas.
While Coinbase will be complying with the government on this order and obeying the subpoena they receive, user privacy is still their priority. Coinbase has not yet formed a legal response, but already has their legal team working on it and made the following statement to The Verge, "We are aware of and expected, the Court’s ex parte order today,” a representative said. “We look forward to opposing the DOJ’s request in court after Coinbase is served with a subpoena.”
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe started issuing ‘bond notes’ on November 28, which have an official value pegged 1-to-1 with the US dollar. However, the Zimbabwean population is very concerned that the new currency could lead to a repeat of the severe hyperinflation the country experienced in 2008 with the Zimbabwean dollar. Economist Philip Haslam believes that bitcoin could be a possible solution to the country’s monetary challenges.
Since India’s economy is challenged by a shortage of money, the Reserve Bank of India will attempt to smooth the effect by cutting interest rates by 0.25 percent at its next meeting, on December 6-7. If the Indian central bank follows through with an interest rate cut, this will, in turn, reduce the purchasing power of the Rupee and augment the attractiveness of Bitcoin, boosting both demand and its price even further.
In an exclusive interview with BTCManager, Glass discusses his issues with the current operational models for crypto as well as some of the solutions he’s actively pursuing through the eCoin Project to correct them. In the interview, Glass states, "At the end of the day, we here at the eCoin Project are just a rabid group of enthusiasts working to enhance the use, value, utility and sustainability of crypto by addressing the aforementioned fundamental weaknesses that have long hindered its [Bitcoin/crypto] full adoption."
The alternate Bitcoin Client, Bitcoin Unlimited, has established itself as a grassroots alternative to Bitcoin Core. Unlimited wants to end the block size debate forever by letting the market decide about the ideal block size. Can this run smoothly? Or does Unlimited carelessly play with the risk to destroy Bitcoin? And who’s behind the project? We try to answer the most important questions.
BlockCDN, a blockchain company stationed in China, aims to provide a solution for CDNs (Content Delivery Networks) by utilizing a peer to peer approach, leveraging existing idle resources to reduce the costs of bandwidth, energy consumption, and hardware maintenance compared to a traditional CDN setting. Use of the Ethereum network and smart contracts will provide the necessary mediator for an easy way to access CDN services in a market setting, and a focus on utilizing idle internet-connected devices that will provide the bandwidth and nodes without much additional overhead.
On November 28, the German central bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, and the German stock exchange, Deutsche Börse, jointly announced in a press release that they have been working on a prototype for a new blockchain-based securities settlement system. The new system is intended to deliver the necessary technological functionalities for a delivery-versus-payment securities settlement system for centrally-issued digital coins, as well as the transfer of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets.
Liechtenstein is known as a tax haven. Hackers claim to possess the bank account data of the clients of the country’s bank Valartis. To not report tax crimes they demand that the customers pay a ransom of 10 percent of their balance, in bitcoin. The hacker threatens to share the client data stolen from the bank with tax authorities and the media. To prevent this leak the clients must pay a ransom in bitcoin by December 7.