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Ron Paul: ‘I’m All for Cryptocurrencies, I Like Competing Currencies’

Former congressman Ron Paul reiterated his views on cryptocurrencies as being good competition for fiat money, as long as there is no fraud involved.

Former Republican congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul says he is in favor of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology because he likes competing currencies. Ron Paul delivered his remarks in a “Squawk Alley” interview on CNBC on July 15.

According to Paul, cryptocurrencies are a great idea, and governments should only step in to regulate the space to prevent fraud:

“… I’m for the least amount of regulation. I don’t know what’s gonna happen to cryptocurrencies. I think it’s a great idea. And I only have one rule: no fraud … I think that the government has a role. And [if] somebody has a case that there is fraud, I think it should be investigated …  What I want to do is legalize the freedom of choice, absent blatant fraud.”

Ron Paul also drew several comparisons to the traditional asset gold. One way in which Paul appears to think gold is similar to crypto is that both are assets competing with fiat money. Paul said, “governments aren’t very tolerant of competition, and they’re not even tolerant with using the Constitution to compete with the fiat dollar. Because gold and silver, you can’t use it.”

Ron Paul has previously discussed his bullish views on cryptocurrency. In 2014, Paul expressed concerns about the backing of Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto in general, but adopted a pro-crypto attitude that is bearish on fiat money in the long run:

“I just don’t think the dollar is going to last. I don’t think any fiat currency lasts forever. They all self-destruct. Right now, the world is engulfed with fiat currency; they’re all paper currencies. That’s one of the other reasons the dollar holds up: What are you competing against, the euro and the yen? The competition out there isn’t any good.”

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Bitcoin is Gold’s ‘Digital Imitation’ Says a Bit-Curious Peter Schiff

The gold bug has agreed to a head-to-head in order to defend gold’s superiority over the largest cryptocurrency.

Veteran gold bug Peter Schiff will debate the precious metal’s utility against Bitcoin (BTC) in a dedicated event with Anthony Pompliano, the latter confirmed on Twitter July 10.

Pompliano, the co-founder and partner at Morgan Creek Digital known in the industry as Pomp, said he hoped to convince Schiff that Bitcoin was a worthwhile investment.

“Peter should get a lot of credit for agreeing to this. Hopefully he walks away a Bitcoin believer,” he wrote announcing the debate, which will occur at an unspecified date on CNBC.

Schiff, well known as a Bitcoin skeptic, has made various public appearances in which he defended gold as a superior asset. Particularly notorious was a debate with ‘The Bitcoin Standard’ author, Saifedean Ammous, which aired in May. 

This week, Pomp triggered an unexpected round of charity aimed at Schiff, which appeared to trigger the formal meeting. 

After sending him a token amount of Bitcoin, other Twitter users followed suit. To date, Schiff’s wallet received 109 transactions totalling 0.208 BTC ($2,400).

In the meantime, however, he remains firmly behind gold’s future prospects. 

“As today’s action shows a rally in gold does not mean Bitcoin will rally too,” he tweeted as BTC/USD slid 10%. “In fact, one of the main reasons for Bitcoin’s prior gains was gold’s failure to rally. But if gold has finally broken out, there is no longer a reason for investors to settle for a digital imitation!”

Earlier this month, another debate pitted serial Bitcoin naysayer Nouriel Roubini against Arthur Hayes, CEO of derivatives giant BitMEX.

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Bitcoin Skeptic Schiff Receives $1,500 in the Crypto, Remains Cynical

Bitcoin Hater Now Owns The Crypto

According to Bitcoin hater Nouriel “Dr. Doom” Roubini, the cryptocurrency industry is rife with scammers, criminals, rent-seeking individuals, and so on and so forth. But if you were to take a gander at Peter Schiff’s publicly-known BTC address, you may not think this is the case. You may instead think the industry is full of altruistic technologists and early-adopters.

Over the past 18 or so hours, the prominent gold bull, who doubles as a staunch Bitcoin bear, has been a beneficiary of the crypto charity’s charitable attitude (search up the Pineapple Fund, check it out). In fact, after being urged to post his BTC address by Anthony Pompliano of Morgan Creek, Schiff’s address has racked up over $1,500 worth of the digital asset.

As of the time of writing this, the cryptocurrency critic, who has claimed that Bitcoin is just “digital fiat”, has over 0.13 BTC and a gift of $100 worth of Bitcoin.

After he received these donations, Schiff quipped, “I guess I’ll have to hodl it and go down with the ship”. This is presumably a critique of the Bitcoin’s industry incessant desire to “HODL” their cryptocurrency, even it was failing.

This odd case of Crypto Charity comes shortly after Schiff bashed Bitcoin via RT. As reported by Ethereum World News previously, the libertarian-leaning economist bashed a story about NASA eyeing an asteroid rife with precious metals, including gold.

He claims that the whole asteroid debacle is a “whole bunch of nonsense”, specifically because the surveys regarding the asteroid’s innards aren’t entirely reliable. But I mean maybe there’s no gold there, we don’t know. They don’t have any idea, they don’t know that there’s gold on that asteroid. There could be some gold there but it would cost a fortune to mine it there,” he told RT.

Schiff went on to say that this whole story is just gaining traction because of the Bitcoin community’s attempts to “create a false narrative that gold supply is not scarce, so the price of gold is going to crash.” This is presumably in reference to Grayscale’s Drop Gold campaign.

Why Spend BTC on a Hater?

While the donations to Schiff’s wallet have a good premise, some have tacitly bashed the community for “spending money on a hater”, especially because Bitcoin is one of the “hardest” monies that humanity has ever thunk up.

Wall Street Journal’s “especially formal heckler” Zack Voell wrote the following tweet, accentuating his confusion.

Stacy Herbert, an early Bitcoin adopter, venture capitalist, and contributor on RT alongside Max Keiser, explained that investors donating to Schiff should send their sats to a Bitcoin educator instead, citing the fact that she has been teaching individuals in Botswana about the cryptocurrency since 2014.

Funnily enough, Schiff’s gold website accepts Bitcoin. He purportedly converts said payments into fiat, but some have suggested that he is trying to quietly accumulate the cryptocurrency. That’s just hopeful postulation though.

Photo by Mark Kamalov on Unsplash

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‘I Guess I’ll Have to Hodl It’ -— Peter Schiff Admits Having Bitcoin

A single back-and-forth with Anthony Pompliano resulted in Schiff receiving $1,350 from strangers in hours.

Veteran gold bug and bitcoin (BTC) skeptic, Peter Schiff, has taken delivery of $1,350 worth the cryptocurrency after the industry sent him donations on July 4.

Schiff, who is well known for warning investors not to trust bitcoin as replacement for gold, triggered the goodwill gestures after becoming the topic of a Twitter debate with Morgan Creek Digital co-founder, Anthony Pompliano.

Pompliano (also known as Pomp), highlighted the fact that Schiff in fact does own some BTC despite his negative comments. 

Schiff responded that it was a token amount given as a gift – just $100 – after which Pompliano requested his BTC address in order to double it. 

Others subsequently followed suit. At press time Friday, Schiff’s wallet contained at balance of $1,350 (0.124 BTC) after 52 transactions. 

The SchiffGold CEO thanked Pompliano and others when his balance still totalled just $130.

“I guess I’ll have to hodl it and go down with the ship,” he said.

Those comments ran in stark contrast to his infamous recent exchanges with bitcoiners and an appearance on a live debate with ‘The Bitcoin Standard’ author, Saifedean Ammous. 

“It doesn’t matter how high the price of Bitcoin rises unless you sell. Every buyer must eventually sell to realize any benefit from the rise,” he wrote about bitcoin’s current bull run last week.

Signs Schiff is in fact not entirely anti-bitcoin, meanwhile, have been evident for some time. Schiff Gold, for example, even offers it as a payment method.

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Bitcoin (BTC), Gold, Safe Havens Continue to Skyrocket in Tandem, Why?

Bitcoin & Gold in Lockstep

Over the past few months, the Bitcoin (BTC) price trend has been eerily similar to that of gold. While some have cast aside this correlation as a pure coincidence, citing the fact that they see the two assets as polar opposites, many suggest that the correlation is fundamentally-backed.

According to eToro’s Mati Greenspan, the reason why Bitcoin has been rallying alongside its physical counterpart is due to the liquidity that central banks have begun to pump into the global economy.

As the popular crypto-friendly analyst explained on Twitter, this is a result of capital from stocks flooding into alternative assets, due to a search for stores of value and ways to mitigate against a U.S. dollar devaluation, which is already starting to occur against some foreign currencies (Canadian Dollar, Japanese Yen, for instance).

This would seemingly be the case. As Max Keiser of RT explained in a recent television segment, the BTC bottom at $3,150 was put in when the Federal Reserve announced it was going to be dovish, meaning it is actively looking to instate the next round of quantitative easing.

More importantly, the search for safe havens was recently made even more important with a tweet from Donald Trump.

Seen below, the businessman-turned-leader accused China and the European Union of manipulating their currencies, and “pumping money into their [economic] system in order to compete with the USA.”

What the American leader is presumably referring to is the skewed balance sheet of Europe and the rumors that China’s (anti-crypto) central bank is toying with the forex market to improve the optics of its current account.

To counter this supposed manipulation, Trump urged the Federal Reserve to “MATCH” the fiscal policy of the aforementioned regions’ respective central banks.

As markets analyst Alex Kruger explains, this will result in lower interest rates, a cheap dollar — foreign currencies have already begun to move against the U.S. Dollar; and soaring stock markets, which will be pushed higher by greater exports and investors rushing to escape an inflating currency.

So, why exactly is this bullish for Bitcoin and gold?

Well, as Travis Kling, the libertarian chief of crypto fund Ikigai, has hinted at, with a low-interest rate environment, hyperinflation, a sovereign debt default, and other horrible economic events become that much more likely. As Kling likes to quip, “[this is] brazenly bullish for a non-sovereign, hardcapped supply, global, immutable, decentralized digital store of value.” By this, the former Wall Street fund manager obviously means Bitcoin, but gold kinda fits the bill too.

All this comes as BTC has begun to gain traction as a viable store of value in today’s economy. As reported by Ethereum World News previously, two mainstream media contributors, Jim Iuorio of CNBC and Tyler Cowen of Bloomberg, have both lauded the leading cryptocurrency as a way to hedge against fiscal/economic uncertainty.

Photo by Dmitry Moraine on Unsplash

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Schiff: Don’t Believe Golden Asteroid Story, Bitcoin (BTC) Inferior

Bitcoin, The Best Store of Value?

For the longest time, Bitcoin pioneers have been pushing the cryptocurrency as an alternative to the United States Dollar and other fiat monies.

While many technologists and prominent investors, even Elon Musk, have agreed to the sentiment that cryptocurrencies are the future, a world in which government-issued paper money is entirely abolished is likely still a quixotic dream.

Thus, for the short term, most proponents of Bitcoin have focused on the asset’s viability as an alternative to gold, the de-facto “store of value of store of values” for millennia. This camp recently got validation of its beliefs with news that NASA has located and targeted a gold-rich celestial object.

For those unaware, last month, British paper The Sun revealed that NASA, the world’s foremost agency on space and off-Earth expeditions, has been eyeing an asteroid known as Pysche 16. Save for the fact that it is one of the largest beings in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, it may not ring any bells. But according to new reports, the icy rock, which is a little over 200 kilometers in diameter, is filled to the brim with gold, platinum, iron, and nickel — elements essential in many Earthly devices.

It has been estimated that the celestial object has various metals valued at over $8,000 quadrillion if mined in their entirety, a sum which is obviously hard to comprehend.

The Earth’s economy, in comparison, is effectively negligible; and Gold’s total market capitalization is somewhere in the $8 trillion range. Moore tells commodities outlet Oil Price that the “four to five million ounces of gold [the ‘Titans of Gold’] bring to market every year pales in comparison to the conquests available in space.”

While NASA isn’t looking to mine it, many Bitcoin bugs quickly stuck this story to gold lovers as a way to prove that the precious metal isn’t as scarce as its price suggests.

You see, unlike the metal, which humanity has clutched to for thousands of years, Bitcoin has a mathematically-enforced supply cap, 21 million tokens.

What’s more, the asset’s supply curve can be predicted and cannot be changed, which is different than the variability in the mining of gold and other precious metals.

This is important in the eyes of many because, in the coming years, the inflation rate of Bitcoin will fall under that of gold, which is an occurrence that optimists claim will allow for BTC to surpass gold.

Gold Bug Begs to Differ

Despite this buoyant sentiment, Peter Schiff, a prominent gold bull and libertarian-leaning economist, suggests that the Bitcoin bulls are pushing. He claims that the whole asteroid debacle is a “whole bunch of nonsense”, specifically because the surveys regarding the asteroid’s innards aren’t entirely reliable. But I mean maybe there’s no gold there, we don’t know. They don’t have any idea, they don’t know that there’s gold on that asteroid. There could be some gold there but it would cost a fortune to mine it there,” he told RT.

Schiff went on to say that this whole story is just gaining traction because of the Bitcoin community’s attempts to “create a false narrative that gold supply is not scarce, so the price of gold is going to crash.” This is presumably in reference to Grayscale’s Drop Gold campaign.

Photo by Juskteez Vu on Unsplash

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Mike Novogratz: I’m Not Selling Bitcoin at $14K Again — It’s Going Higher

Galaxy Digital founder Mike Novogratz predicts that bitcoin still has a long way higher to go following its current “spectacular rally.”

Galaxy Digital founder and crypto enthusiast Mike Novogratz has predicted that bitcoin (BTC) still has a long way higher to go following its current “spectacular rally.” 

With BTC price circling the $11,000 at press time, Novogratz told Bloomberg TV on July 3 that the coin’s spike toward $14,000 and later downwards correction was to be expected as part of its historic moves. He predicts that the market will see consolidation around the $10,000- 14,000 mark for some time before current momentum enters its next leg and we go higher.

“I don’t think I’m selling the next time we’re up to $14,000,” he said. “I think the next time we get up there it’s closer to $20,000 […] I don’t expect that in the next few weeks, I don’t expect it till the middle or the end of the fourth quarter.” 

The crypto merchant bank pioneer said the cryptocurrency’s parabolic price moves have been driven by real reasons — pointing to Facebook’s entry into the space with Libra and the fact that payments giants such as Visa and Mastercard have joined the Libra consortium. He added:

“The biggest companies in the world — we also had the investments by the Yale, Harvard and Stanford endowments. All of a sudden the question around institutionalisation has been answered.”

In the longer term, Novogratz argued that bitcoin is carving out its niche as a form of digital gold, and that we can expect it to hit a $40,000 valuation and potentially much higher over time. 

Given physical gold’s current market cap of $8.5 trillion, bitcoin still has some way to go before it catches up, he conceded — yet emphasized that the coin has become legitimized as a real, hard asset with a fixed supply and robust technology.

Novogratz contrasted bitcoin with other coins such as ether (ETH) and XRP, suggesting that these latter cryptocurrencies are dealing with significantly more competition.

The fact that altcoins have seen a lesser price hike in the current bull market is, therefore, a sign that the market has become more rational, he said.

Such projects still need time to build the technology that will realize their aspirations — in Ethereum’s case, to succeed in becoming “a web 3.0 decentralized supercomputer” that is scalable and efficient enough for mass adoption. He thus forecast that we are two to three years away from seeing real growth in the altcoin sphere. 

In a short remark on the current state of crypto regulation, Novogratz emphasized that the United States is failing to keep pace with the sector, but that Facebook, Visa and Mastercard’s entries will likely serve as a wake-up call that smarter — if not necessarily more — regulation is needed. 

As reported, Novogratz’s fresh comments are consistent with his recent analysis that BTC is likely to remain in a consolidation around $10-14,000, notwithstanding its day-by-day volatility.

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Research: Only 30% of Known Stablecoins Are Live and Operational

A new study shows that 30% of known stablecoins are live and operational.

Only 66 stablecoins — 30% of total announced tokens — are actually live and operational, according to a study published by the blockchain research group Blockdata on June 26

The remaining 70%  are either still in development or have shut down entirely.

Researchers from Blockdata believe that one consequence of this is that 2019–2020 may see a record high of new stablecoins going live, with 119 estimated to launch in 2019.

Researchers also examined possible factors may have led to the closure of failed stablecoins. Failed stablecoins, according to the study, tend to be commodity-backed by assets such as gold. Gold-backed stablecoins, in particular, accounted for approximately two thirds of all failed stablecoins.

Looking closer at the failed, currency-backed stablecoins, the researchers found several factors that they deemed to be responsible, falling into the categories of volatility, physical storage complications, and scams.

Some other trends noted in the study included the prevalence of Ethereum-based stablecoins, as well as asset-backed stablecoins. While the report identifies 15 different blockchains that stablecoins are implemented upon, Ethereum retains approximately a 50% share of all stablecoins by blockchain — the next most common being Bitshares and Stellar.

Asset-backed stablecoins also comprise an overwhelming majority of all live stablecoins, at 95%. While this remains the most common means of stablecoin issuance, algorithmic stabilization and other methods can be used to develop a stablecoin.

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Steve Forbes, the namesake of business publication giant Forbes, recently told Mark Zuckerberg to back Facebook’s stablecoin-like virtual currency Libra with gold. 

Forbes believes that gold will provide fixed value for the upcoming virtual currency given the precious metal’s purported history of stability:

“For a variety of reasons gold holds its intrinsic value better than anything else. It’s like a measuring rod. It no more restricts the money supply than the 12 inches in a foot restricts the size of a building you might wish to construct. All it means is that the Libra will have what no other currency has today: a fixed value.”

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Steve Forbes Tells Zuckerberg: Use Gold to Back Libra, Call It the ‘Mark’

Steve Forbes claimed that gold backing is the basic condition for Libra to become “one of history’s truly seminal creations.”

Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media, published on June 25 an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg, advising to back Facebook’s cryptocurrency Libra with gold.

In the letter, Forbes strongly encouraged Facebook’s crypto initiative, emphasizing Libra’s potential to become one of the greatest inventions in the world, which eventually “could replace the U.S. dollar as the global currency.”

At the same time, to become “one of history’s truly seminal creations,” Libra has to be backed by gold as a basic condition, Forbes argued in the letter, opposing it to the current Facebook’s plan to back the coin by a basket of currencies.

The major American publishing exec explained that yellow metal would fit this function best in Libra’s mission to provide a “truly stable cryptocurrency.” Forbes wrote:

“For a variety of reasons gold holds its intrinsic value better than anything else. It’s like a measuring rod. It no more restricts the money supply than the 12 inches in a foot restricts the size of a building you might wish to construct. All it means is that the Libra will have what no other currency has today: a fixed value.”

According to Forbes, Libra’s “fixture” will the actual thing that will make it the “most desirable medium of exchange around the globe,” since it can be used in day-to-day transactions, as well as in long-term investing.

In his message, Forbes has also warned Zuckerberg that Libra’s consultants will most likely be criticizing the gold-backing idea, still arguing that it would “actually be an advantage” as it will keep away “well-capitalized imitators.”

Concluding his letter, Forbes eventually urged Zuckerberg to consider changing Libra’s name to the “Mark,” referencing the bad luck history of the “Libra” term. Specifically, he reminded that the “Libra” was used to refer to a measure of the weight from the destroyed Roman Empire. On the other hand, the Mark of the German Empire, which was abandoned for the euro 20 years ago and now is “up for grabs,” notes Forbes. 

Meanwhile, in a recent conversation with Harvard Professor Cass Sunstein, Zuckerberg stressed the collaborative nature of Libra, saying that the association behind the project will “hopefully” grow up to 100 founding partners from the current 27 companies, including Visa and Uber.

According to a report by The New Yorker, major American banking institutions including Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and Fidelity have denied to join Libra association so far.