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A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats

Nick
Author Nick
Published
Updated

Bitcoin, Ethereum and a dozen or more altcoins have all had dramatic price increases in recent weeks. Volatility is as high as ever, but the general direction for a huge number of these coins has been upwards. This increase in market capitalization across multiple cryptocurrencies hasn’t been seen before, and could be indicative of a large stream of “new money” funnelling into the ecosystem. In the past few weeks, there have been a series of positive news stories and developments in the blockchain industry as a whole including:

  • SEC gives Bitcoin ETF a possible second shot
  • Japan legalises Bitcoin; causing massive demand in the country
  • Ethereum ENS launches, attracting $10M in auction bids
  • Japan’s largest bank partners with the consortium blockchain, Ripple (XRP)
  • Russia plans to legitimize Bitcoin; with the country’s largest retailer Ulmart, announcing they will accept the cryptocurrency
  • Australia to treat Bitcoin “like money” from June 1st 2017, dramatically improving its position with regards to taxation
  • Litecoin successfully activates Segregated Witness (a scaling fix which can be applied to Bitcoin)
  • ShapeShift.io announces its plans to become a smart-contract driven decentralized exchange (full details not yet known, but anticipated to be operating on the Ethereum blockchain)

Investors have always been nervous of cryptocurrency competition, often speculating that one’s rise may lead to another’s decimation. What has transpired in 2017 so far is that an increase in cryptocurrency adoption as whole has tremendous effects on the price of each coin, and that a price rise of one does not come at the expense of another. This year is showing itself to be the year of the blockchain ecosystem (Bitcoin, Ethereum and altcoins), and I only anticipate that this will get stronger as interoperability between chains takes hold in 2018.