Bitcoin price appears to be holding strong above $10,000, rising as much as 10%, but the total cryptocurrency market cap is still falling short of $500 billion.
The price rally correlated with the announcement that fintech startup Circle had acquired cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex in a deal reportedly worth $400 million. In addition to ranking among the largest acquisitions in the industry’s history, the acquisition also increases the exposure of cryptocurrency-skeptics such as Goldman Sachs to the industry’s supply chain, as the investment banking giant was one of Circle’s earliest investors.
At the time of writing, Bitcoin is trading at $10,759 which translates into a market cap of $181 billion.Ethereum is also far away from the $800 mark today, which it had briefly dropped below earlier this week. ETH is up almost 6 %, trading at around $884 at present.
Ether remains as the only cryptocurrency apart from Litecoin to show some upward momentum, but its trading volume is still relatively low. Over the past few weeks, Ether has tended to follow the price trend of bitcoin throughout the recovery period from its monthly lows. But this week, Ether has performed better than bitcoin, moving in a different direction to the most dominant cryptocurrency in the market.
The were no major advances in the large-cap altcoins, except Nano, which once again rose 26% in the last 24 hours. The likes of Ripple, IOTA, NEO, Bitcoin Cash, EOS continue to trade sideways even though Bitcoin price has the bullish momentum.
From here on, Bitcoin is likely to test $8,211 in the short run. A possible corrective rally is likely to run out of steam around the downward sloping (biased bearish) 10-week MA, now seen at $11,251.
Top Stories from the Crypto World
1. Circle buys Poloniex for over $400 million
Poloniex, which is currently the world’s 14th-largest exchange by 24-hour trading volume and offers trades in 68 different coins, has been acquired by Goldman Sachs and Baidu backed startup Circle.
The companies did not disclose the terms of the deal, but Fortune,citing an unnamed source familiar with the matter, has reported that Circle paid $400 million to acquire Poloniex, which is headquartered in Boston.
Circle is made up of three parts: Circle Pay for fiat transfers, Circle Trade as a liquidity provider of cryptocurrencies, and the upcoming Circle Invest, an app that will allow retail customers to invest in crypto markets.
In today’s announcement on the Circle blog, Circle co-founders Sean Neville and Jeremy Allaire wrote that the first step for Circle is to address customer support and the technical side needed to support the Poloniex platform. Secondly,
“We also look forward to scaling Poloniex up and out through market expansion and localization, increasing token listings where possible and appropriate, and exploring the fiat USD, EUR, and GBP connectivity that Circle already brings to its compliant Pay, Trade, and Invest products.”
2. Dave Kleinman’s Estate files $10 billion lawsuit against Craig Wright
The estate of early Bitcoin adopter Dave Kleinman has sued self-declared Bitcoin creator Craig Wright for more than $10 billion for allegedly stealing more than 1 million BTC from the forensic computer investigator following his death in 2013.
The complaint, which was dated Feb. 14 and filed by Boies Schiller Flexner LLP on behalf of Kleinman’s brother Ira, alleges that Kleinman and Wright were both involved with Bitcoin development from the project’s inception.
Notably, the document avoided stating outright that either or both of them were Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto, as Wright has claimed in the past.
However, the complaint claimed that the two men mined more than 1.1 million BTC through W&K Info Defense Research LLC, a company formed by Kleinman and either owned wholly by him or held in partnership with Wright.
At the time of filing, these funds were worth more than $10.2 billion, while the value of the two largest Bitcoin-derived forks — Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Bitcoin Gold (BTG) — adds another $1.5 billion.
A good thing to know: According to WizSec, these 1.1 million never existed in the first place: http://blog.wizsec.jp/2018/02/kleiman-v-craig-wright-bitcoins.html
3. Bitcoin Core releases software update with full Segwit Support
Version 0.16.0 of Bitcoin Core, the standard software client of the bitcoin network, adds full support for Segregated Witness (SegWit). Its release was presaged by a Github announcement earlier in February.
The code is intended to solve Bitcoin’s scalability obstacles. Bitcoin’s main protocol has a maximum block size of 1 megabyte, which restricts the volume and speed of transactions.
SegWit also introduces a new address format created by Bitcoin Core contributors Pieter Wuille and Greg Maxwell that provides a better user experience, facilitates the automatic support of SegWit and lowers transaction fees.