Bitcoin Bubble Tracker | Week 4
Was Bitcoin naughty or nice this week and how did Santa reward (or reprimand) the wishes of Bitcoin traders? Some retailers looked to gain extra points with consumers by announcing their plans and their successes with Bitcoin while investors shared the merits behind investing not in Bitcoin, but in the activities related to bitcoin (Winkelvoss twins are you listening)? However the worst presents came from a few key players, including the Reserve Bank of India and the Nobel Prize winner, Paul Krugman.
So, check out what’s in store this week and if the bubble burst or bust. [Hint – the bubble builders are making a come back at the end of the week, as the trading shows]
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Bitcoin finally received its Christmas present from Asia in the nick of time, when the Singapore government announced that it would keep out of the bitcoin laws, for the time being that is. Another Christmas miracle came from Gyft, the online gift card companies that claimed that bitcoin accounted for millions in dollars in sales over the holiday season. Buying what, we do not know, and know for certain, that we were not the recipient of any said gyfts.
- December 26, 2013 – Bitcoin prices rise more than 5% to hit a one-week high in post-Christmas trading.
- December 26, 2013 – Asia’s wealthiest businessman, Li Kashing has invested in BitPay, a peripheral activity related to Bitcoin.
- December 25, 2013 – A Bitcoin Santa has been giving Bitcoin Grants to fund startups focused on the digital currency.
- December 25, 2013 – A property listings site in the US, RentHop, has started giving a large discount to users who advertise on the site and then pay with Bitcoin. RentHop believes that Bitcoin payments would help to solve problems with cashier’s checks and chargebacks on credit card payments.
- December 24, 2013 – The most popular Bitcoin site and online wallet, Blockchain.info announced that it has acquired ZeroBlock LLC, a leading mobile Bitcoin app.
- December 24, 2013 – The central bank of Singapore, the Monetary Authority of Singapore, has decited to not intervene on if companies may accept Bitcoins in exchange for goods or services.
- December 23, 2013 – Bitcoin may be used to buy a range of items, and may now be used to buy Victoria Secret lingerie with gift cards from Gyft. Gyft lets users buy gift cards from 200 retailers using conventional currencies or Bitcoin. Gyft claims that Bitcoin has accounted for “millions of dollars” in sales over the holiday season.
- December 23, 2013 – Bitbar, designed by online social club Grouper, will enable users to buy a drink with Bitcoin. Customers can place an order under an alias, pay and then receive their drink under their alias. To register for a secret alias, consumers go to bitbar.io to sign up and then may pay at over 300 bars in the US. A drink costs a flat rate of 0.01 BTC.
- December 23, 2013 – The Silk Road 2 has plans to reopen on December 28th.
- December 23, 2013 – The Richmond Federal Reserve President, Jeffrey Lacker, acknowledged that Bitcoin may have trouble gaining market share due to extreme fluctuations but that the US Federal Government may have little interest in stopping the Bitcoin market at this point.
- December 22, 2013 – Bitcoin mining has become more available to the public, with shared ownership or rental programs similar to concept of private jet sharing companies, like NetJet. Emmanuel Abiodun, has created a mining pool business, Cloud Hashing, and moved the company to Iceland to enable expansion.
- December 21, 2013 – A $1.4M home in Perth, Australia was put on the market to be paid for with Bitcoin.
- December 20, 2013 – Poker with Bitcoin is booming online in the U.S. due to federal legislation banning the transferring of funds related to illegal Internet gambling in the U.S.
- December 19, 2013 – The online retailer, Overstock.com, will start accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment as early as the end of Q2 2014. The company wouldn’t hold Bitcoin after the transaction occurs but plans to use a Bitcoin payment processor to convert Bitcoin to cash and assume the risk of the cryptocurrency.
- December 19, 2013 – Citizens in emerging markets were asked about their knowledge and comfort with Bitcoin and virtual currencies. 58% of respondents said they would feel comfortable investing in a virtual currency and the respondents
- December 19, 2013 – A resident of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, located in the second poorest county of the U.S. wants to break away from the American government and use Bitcoin as the Reservations currency.
Of course, every Christmas season has its Scrooges and this season, Scrooge came from India with an early warning against the digital currency and dressed as Paul Krugman. And, there were plenty of holiday hackers on hand, stealing Bitcoin gifts from live Bloomberg TV and hacking the most loveable and cuddly alternative currency of them all, Dogecoin.
- December 26, 2013 – Many Bitcoin operators in India have begun to suspend their businesses after RBI’s warning against Bitcoin.
- December 26, 2013 – The currency that is still in its “puppy stage”, Dogecoin, has been hacked.
- December 25, 2013 – The Reserve Bank of India has warned against Bitcoin, saying virtual currencies as a medium for payments are not authorized by any central bank or monetary authority.
- December 24, 2013 – Bitcoin-only poker website, Seals with Clubs, announced that they had been hacked.
- December 23, 2013 – The accused founder of the online marketplace for illegal drugs and other activities has asked the government to return the more than $30 million in Bitcoin that was taken in the shutdown of the Silk Road.
- December 23, 2013 – Bloomberg TV’s Matt Miller, shared a Bitcoin gift of $20 on TV, which was immediately lifted via the QR code and stolen.
- December 23, 2013 – NYU professor, David Yermack, has released a working paper on the historical trading of Bitcoin and whether it behaves like a traditional sovereign currency. He determined that “Bitcoin appears to behave more like a speculative investment than like a currency”.
- December 22, 2013 – Bank lenders are hesitant to offer Bitcoin businesses bank accounts, due to concerns about the anti-money-laundering laws. Banks are reluctant to create policies related to Bitcoin customers.
- December 22, 2013 – Economist and Nobel Prize winner, Paul Krugman, dismisses Bitcoin in his New York Times column as “socially wasteful” and “pointless.” Ouch.