David Fuller and Eoin Treacy's Comment of the Day
Category - General

    Bitcoin Mania Grips Retail Traders in Flashback to Fall 2017

    This article by Claire Ballentine and Edward Robinson for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    “FOMO is slowly kicking in. We are only just beginning to see some of our retail clients borrowing against their Bitcoin to buy more Bitcoin and that will ultimately propel the rally well into the $20,000s and beyond,” said Antoni Trenchev, co-founder and managing partner of Nexo in London, which bills itself as the world’s biggest crypto lender.

    Trading got so intense overnight in XRP that U.S. cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase crashed, according to media reports. That sparked a plunge in the coin after the massive rally took it to a record.

    Coinbase’s official status page says that its website is operational, and that an incident on Monday at 10 p.m. has been resolved. A spokesperson from Coinbase said they are looking into Bloomberg News’ request for comment.

    While Main Street investors may be dreaming about hitting a jackpot, more seasoned market veterans remain wary about the sudden boom. The crypto world is notoriously opaque, and unlike stocks or bonds, which are rooted in economic and business fundamentals, getting a read on what makes Bitcoin tick can be impossible even for the savviest investors

    “Whenever I see mainstream media attention like this, that usually leads to a sell-off,” said Kevin Murcko, the founder and CEO of CoinMetro, an Estonia-based crypto exchange. “The big fish need to lay off risk so they open the floodgates to bring in retail guys to dump on. Not sure this is the case this time around but it seems a bit suspect.”

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Experimental cancer vaccine passes animal tests, moves to human trials

    This article by Rich Haridy for Newatlas.com may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    "We are excited to begin testing of this vaccine in the United States to offer new hope to patients with lung and other cancers,” adds Kaumaya. “Reaching this point where we can transition our findings from the lab to the clinic speaks to the perseverance and dedication of Imugene's clinical and research team – including our research lab staff at Ohio State – to build on the clinical and commercial potential.”

    The new research was published in the journal Oncoimmunology and the video below offers a more detailed explanation of how the novel cancer vaccine works.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Email of the day - on the politicisation of monetary policy

    I hope life for you in California is more fun than it is here in England. But let's hope we really are past the low point as far as the virus is concerned. I had thought that would be true for economies too, but this latest move by President Trump (summarised in the article by Ambrose Evans Pritchard) does raise questions. With this move, which asset classes do you think will benefit and which will lose on a 3-6 month timescale?

    Best wishes to you and family. 

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    PayPal and Square's Cash App have scooped up 100% of newly mined bitcoins, report says

    This article from Business Insider may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

    PayPal and Jack Dorsey's Cash App have bought 100% of newly mined bitcoins as the digital token is seeing a record rally this year, according to Pantera Capital's monthly blockchain newsletter.

    After PayPal announced it would allow its users to buy, sell, and hold the digital token, about 300 million active users got instant access to digital currencies.

    The US payments firm's crypto-exchange platform, itBit, was recording only moderate volumes until PayPal's announcement.

    But once PayPal's service went live, itBit's volumes started exploding within four weeks. PayPal is already buying 70% of the newly mined bitcoins while Cash App has bought about 40%, Pantera said.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Email of the day on crypto wallets

    Check out the Ledger Nano X hardware wallet. It can hold 100 apps simultaneously. Whereas, please be aware that the ETH app can hold all ERC20 tokens. So just by installing BTC and ETH you can hold keys to many more coins that just BTC and ETH. You will have BTC + all ERC 20 coins.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Email of the day following up on my piece on valuing cryptocurrencies

    Thanks Eoin, but that still says nothing about what its value ought to be. With Tech companies there’s a long-term possibility of earnings for which a multiple can be applied or a Sales multiple for which there will be a precedent or relative multiple. There seems to be nothing of the sort for Crypto. So again, I’m left scratching my head as to what price should be paid for these, other than some chart history of where the price has been previously.

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    The Allure of GameStop's Stores

    This article by Joshua Brustein for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section: 

    Shankar, director of the Center for Retailing Studies at Texas A&M University. “There were two forks in the road. They could have scaled up online, or they could have moved into adjacent brick-and-mortar businesses. They chose brick-and-mortar, because it was lower risk in the short term,” Shankar said. “It was a missed opportunity and they’re still hurting from that.” 

    If GameStop knew what its problem was, why didn’t it do more to address it? Cohen and Shankar both cite internal resistance to change. That may be right, but it's not as easy as turning down the “physical retail” dial and turning up the “digital commerce” one. I’ve spent enough time in GameStops to come to appreciate their strange charms, and I can tell you that the company's unique advantages don’t necessarily translate to the internet.

    GameStop locations don’t seem like local bookshops or bike stores, but they bear similarities. Gaming remains enough of a niche interest that GameStop can create a sense of community just by employing people who know about video games and not chasing away the young men who make up a big proportion of their patronage. I’m now a lapsed gamer and wouldn’t exactly describe GameStop locations as pleasant. But there’s a kind of magic in a place completely dedicated to the activity that makes me want to clear my schedule, grab a controller and house a few Jolt colas. Plus the ability to pay for new games with old ones isn't a checkout option that is easily recreated in a mobile app. 

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.

    Email of the day on bitcoin wallets

    Many thanks for your ongoing informative and enlightening observations about the markets. One quick question please regarding holding Cryptocurrencies: do you value the 'vault' function within Coinbase? As I build my positions slowly, I am researching hardware wallets and some of them seem very restricted in terms of the number of coins they will hold. Just wondered your thoughts on the security of the accessible platform-based 'Vault'?

    This section continues in the Subscriber's Area.