Despite lightning network developments, Tether’s recent audit and the Bithumb exchange responding well to a malicious attack, Bitcoin is still struggling to gain traction in today’s market. Let’s look at a few reasons why that is.
1. Market Manipulation
BTC market manipulation has been a highly contentious area that always arises when questioning Bitcoin’s price activity. Whether traders choose to accept it or not, evidence supplied by a University of Texas finance professor recently, along with investigations by the United States Justice Department the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, are beginning to prove that this ‘conspiracy theory’ actually exists in the market.
If you looked at Bitcoin’s chart this morning you would have seen that BTC was actually heading towards a bullish breakout from an ascending triangle pattern. Admittedly technical analysis is not a definitive tool for establishing price movements, but it does seem strange that BTC was able to climb out from the Bithumb hacked unscathed yesterday, show rising support through last night and then suddenly breakout bearish for no obvious reason.
Information presented in ‘Uncovering The Real Cartel In Bitcoin’ outlines the shady relationship between Tether and Bitfinex using evidence from the ‘Paradise Papers’, showing that USDT has been used to artificially inflate not just BTC markets, but other alt-coin trading pairs as well. Professor John Griffiths of the aforementioned University of Texas also wrote an extensive 66 page thesis recently highlighting this same suspicion. Though Tether has recently passed an independent audit which confirms that Tether has sufficient US dollar supplies to back each issued USDT token, some belief that this could have been achieved in a number of ways; including borrowing money to temporarily ‘window dress’ their bank accounts to artificially back their issued token supply at the time of the audit.
2. Market Supply Outweighs Current Demand
In a twitter post earlier today, Ronnie Moas touched on this issue in the current crypto market, that after the over-inflated Q4 surge last year crypto investors are beginning to lose faith that those figures will not be reached again.
“Supply hanging over the market like a dark cloud. Will be a challenge to blow that out”
Charlie Lee also commented on this lack of faith in a CNBC Fast Money interview yesterday, saying that the prices of Bitcoin, Litecoin and other alt-coins are ‘disjointed’ from the new developments that each project is rolling out this year. This is true, especially when you look at Tron and Vechain at the moment. Both projects have, or are about to, launch their mainnets and have both made significant partnerships with industry leaders, yet neither have experienced any notable rise in value. Instead, the market remains fixated on selling off and are afraid to HODL or invest against the falling market.
3. Market Maturity
Another reason to explain why Bitcoin is falling right now is market maturity. Despite Bitcoin being created back in 2009, the crypto market itself didn’t really start to gain traction until 2014/2015 when Ethereum, Dash and other early coin projects were starting to emerge from the wake of Bitcoin’s innovation. When crypto investing exploded late last year, the market was still in its infancy and largely speculative. Even now many projects are only just starting to release minimal viable products (MVPs), testnets, platforms etc off the back of their ICOs.
The premature surge of money in Q4 last year was never going to last for long and now we’re experiencing a harsh correction back to where the market should really be at this time in its development.
4. Mainstream Media FUD
Another crippling factor that always holds Bitcoin’s price back is bad press and the torrent of misguided information that is passed down to the general public.
As the traditional financial system comes under threat, mainstream media has played its role in misrepresenting the industry to potential new investors in this space, by downplaying its technological utility and over emphasizing bearish market movements. According to German Philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer though, all truths travel through 3 stages of acceptance,
(2) Violently Opposed
(3) Accepted As Self Evident
The crypto market here is no different. Right now the mainstream does not recognise the potential in this industry and is choosing to ignore it’s inevitable advance. Eventually however, it will become as widely accepted as mobile phones and the internet which also had to pass through those same 3 stages.
5. National Regulatory Intervention
Regulatory opposition was always going to fight against the crypto market because it is an unregulated and decentralized financial system born into a centralized, heavily regulated world. In some ways regulatory intervention has proved beneficial in this space, like the self-regulated Japanese exchange association which aims at improving user security across exchanges, to better the nation’s crypto ecosystem.
In the US however, government institutions such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) have both smothered digital asset trading in regulations; imposing licensing and registration requirements on any crypto exchange or broker company wishing to operate in the US. This has led to a lot companies moving overseas and has restricted many US citizens from participating freely in the market.
Read more: Cryptovest