Price Analysis 06/12: BTC, ETH, XRP, BCH, LTC, EOS, BNB, BSV, XLM, ADA

In its “Imagine 2030” report, Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid forecast that by 2030, digital currencies could replace cash. Reid said that in order for mainstream integration to occur, digital currencies will have to convince regulators that they are safe for investors and find solutions for issues such as cyber attacks, electricity consumption and digital war.

Cryptocurrency adoption by a large traditional financial institution could also signal that digital assets could one day replace fiat currencies in the future.

To counter the possibility of fiat currencies being undermined by cryptocurrencies, several governments are planning to issue their own central bank digital currency (CBDC). The latest to confirm working on a CBDC is France. Bank of France governor François Villeroy de Galhau recently announced that the bank will test a digital euro pilot project for private financial sector players.

However, the United States Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin has a different opinion. In his comments to the House Financial Services Committee, Mnuchin said that he and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell do not see any need of a national digital currency in the next five years.

Daily cryptocurrency market performance. Source: Coin360

Daily cryptocurrency market performance. Source: Coin360

The European Union (EU) authorities also said that they won’t allow any stablecoin project to begin operation in the EU until risks to monetary sovereignty are addressed. This shows that the path to acceptance by the governments and regulators is not going to be easy.

While a few major cryptocurrencies are showing signs of bottoming out, others are on the verge of resuming their downtrend. Let’s analyze the charts to find the ones that could reverse direction and start a new uptrend.


The bulls are attempting to keep Bitcoin (BTC) above $7,000. This is a positive sign as it shows that buyers are not waiting for a deeper correction to step in. If the bulls can carry the price above $7,856.76, it will signal strength.

Above $7,856.76, a rally to the downtrend line is likely. This is an important resistance to watch out for because the price has repeatedly turned down from it.

BTC USD daily chart. Source: TradingviewBTC USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

A breakout of the downtrend line could start a new uptrend. Therefore, we retain the buy recommendation given in the previous analysis.

Contrary to our assumption, if the BTC/USD pair reverses direction from the current levels or from the downtrend line and plummets below $6,512.01, the downtrend will resume. A breakdown to new yearly lows will be a huge negative and will hurt sentiment. Therefore, we do not suggest buying until the markets signal a possible change in trend.


The bulls have been attempting to push Ether (ETH) back into the large range of $151.829 to $235.70. If the price can sustain above $157.50, it will signal that the markets have rejected the lower levels.

ETH USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

ETH USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

If the bulls propel the price above $157.50, the next level to watch out for is $173.841 and above it $197.750. The short-term traders can look for buying opportunities after the price sustains above $157.50.

Conversely, if the bulls fail to propel the price above $157.50, the ETH/USD pair will consolidate between $131.484 and $157.50 for a few more days. A break down of this range will be a huge negative as it will resume the downtrend.


The bears have not been able to sustain the price below $0.22 in the past few days. This shows buying at lower levels. However, buying dries up at higher levels as the bulls have not been able to propel XRP above the critical overhead resistance of $0.24508.

XRP USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

XRP USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

As a result, the price is stuck close to $0.22 for the past few days. A break above $0.23260 to $0.24508 resistance zone will be the first indication that the downtrend is over. Hence, we might suggest long positions after the price sustains above $0.24508.

Conversely, if the bears sink the XRP/USD pair below $0.20041, the downtrend will resume. We do not find any reliable buy setups at the current levels.


The bulls are attempting to defend the support at $203.36. This is a positive sign. However, they have not been able to achieve a strong bounce off it, which shows a lack of demand at higher levels. Therefore, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) might spend some more time consolidating between $192.50 and $227.01.

BCH USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

BCH USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

If the BCH/USD pair breaks out of this range, it will indicate accumulation by the stronger hands. Above $227.01, the first target objective is $261.50 and above it $306.78. As the risk to reward ratio looks attractive, the traders can initiate long positions on a close (UTC time) above $227.01 and keep a stop loss of $192.

Contrary to our assumption, if the bears sink the price below $192.50, it will indicate distribution in the range. The next level to watch on the downside is $166.98.


Litecoin (LTC) has been trading close to the recent low of $42.0599. This shows a lack of aggressive buying by the bulls even at these levels. In the absence of buying, the bears will attempt to sink the price below $42.0599 and resume the downtrend. With the 20-day EMA sloping down and the RSI in negative territory, the advantage is with the bears.

LTC USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

LTC USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

However, if the bulls defend the support at $42.0599 aggressively, the LTC/USD pair might consolidate between $42.0599 and $50 for a few days.

The pair will indicate strength and offer a buying opportunity after it breaks above the overhead resistance at $50. Until then, we suggest traders remain on the sidelines.


EOS has been trading just below the 20-day EMA for the past few days. Though the bulls have not been able to scale above it, they have not given up ground either. Both moving averages are flattening out and the RSI is gradually rising towards the center. This points to a range-bound action in the short-term.

EOS USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

EOS USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

A breakout of $2.8695 will be a positive sign that is likely to attract buyers. Above this level, a rally to the downtrend is likely. The short-term traders could ride this up move.

Our bullish view will be invalidated if the bears defend the overhead resistance at $2.8695 and sink the EOS/USD pair below $2.4001. Such a move will resume the downtrend.


Both bulls and bears are battling it out for supremacy between $16.50 and $14.2555. After one party emerges as the victor, Binance Coin (BNB) will start a trending move. Longer the time spent in the range, stronger will be the eventual breakout or breakdown from it.

BNB USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

BNB USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

A breakout of $16.50 will indicate that the bulls have gained the upper hand and a rally to $21.2378 is possible. Though there is a minor resistance at the 50-day SMA, we expect it to be crossed.

Conversely, if the BNB/USD pair plummets below $14.2555, it will signal a victory for the bears. The next support on the downside is $11.30. We will wait for the price to sustain above $16.50 before recommending a long position in it.


Bitcoin SV (BSV) is looking weak as the bulls have not been able to sustain the rebound off the support at $92.693. A break below $92.693 can drag the price to the next support at $78.506. Below this level, the next support is $66.666.

BSV USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

BSV USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

Contrary to our assumption, if the BSV/USD pair bounces off the current levels and breaks out of the downtrend line, it can move up to $113.960. This is an important resistance to watch out for because if it is scaled, a rally to $155.380 will be on the cards.

We will wait for the price to close (UTC time) above $117 before turning positive.


Stellar (XLM) has been trading below $0.056 for the past two days, which is a negative sign. It shows a lack of demand even at these levels. If the bulls do not push the price back above $0.056 within the next few days, the possibility of a drop to $0.051014 increases. If this support also cracks, the downtrend can reach $0.041748.

XLM USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

XLM USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

Nonetheless, if the bulls quickly push the price above $0.056, it will indicate that buyers are making a comeback. The XLM/USD pair will gain strength on a break out of $0.06.

We might suggest a long position after watching the price action at $0.06. Until then, we remain neutral on the pair.


Cardano (ADA) has risen to the tenth spot replacing Tron (TRX). Hence, it finds a place in our analysis. Though the bulls have defended the $0.035778 support since late September, they have not been able to achieve a strong and sustained bounce, which is a negative sign.

ADA USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

ADA USD daily chart. Source: Tradingview

If the bears sink the price below the $0.035778 to $0.0329526 support zone, the downtrend will resume. The next support on the downside is $0.0282710.

Conversely, if the ADA/USD pair rebounds off the current levels, the bulls will try to push it to $0.0461161. Above this level, a rally to $0.0560221 is possible. The short-term traders could attempt to trade the range on the long side.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

Market data is provided by HitBTC exchange.

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Bitcoin Price Showing Hidden Signs of Reversing — Next Target $8.2K

This week Bitcoin (BTC) continued to trade within a tightly defined range and at the time of writing the price is flat. The bulls and bears have been throwing the market back and forth with moments of high volatility on the lower timeframes, all of which are often a sign of a larger move simmering beneath the surface.

The wider market remains in a similar position, although some altcoins like XRP have slightly outperformed Bitcoin over the past 24 hours. 

Cryptocurrency market daily view. Source: Coin360Cryptocurrency market daily view. Source: Coin360

Watch the weekly chart

BTC USD Weekly chart. Source: TradingViewBTC USD Weekly chart. Source: TradingView

Analyzing the weekly chart shows that Bitcoin has fundamentally been locked in a bearish posture for close to six months and this is defined by the downward sloping diagonal resistance. 

Major resistance was found at $11,500 and the $9,500 and $7,500 support eventually turned into resistance. Support has now been found at $6,500 which was a critical bullish rejection level in the first half of the year and is demonstrative of a high volume node on the VPVR.

Bitcoin is currently trading up against previous support which has flipped to resistance and the Doji candlestick is a clear sign of indecision in the market as traders are pushing price within a clear range and coming back to the center. 

This shows that the bulls and bears are struggling to find a direction. Bitcoin price can either reverse course or find continuation of the previous candle but ultimately, the current price action defines the week to date quite nicely.

Moving averages provide useful insight 

The 50 and 100-week moving average (WMA) are in the process of crossing bullish which has only occurred a few times in Bitcoin’s history and has signaled an impending upside move. It is important to note that moving averages do not drive a market, they lag the market but can help to identify macro changes in the market’s direction. 

The 200-WMA is situated in the $5,000 range where there is also some historic volume interest at this price range. Many analysts are calling for a retest of the 200-WMA which would likely be a last line of defense for bulls. This would also be unprecedented at this stage in the Bitcoin market cycle. 

Generally, volume on spot exchanges has been decreasing through the circa six-month decline which is typically a sign of sellers becoming exhausted as each push lower entices fewer participants to sell. 

The moving average convergence divergence (MACD) has crossed the zero line to the bearish side, meaning that the underlying moving averages are now crossed bearishly. However, there is a higher low forming on the histogram which is an unconfirmed bullish divergence.

Thus, on a macro level, it seems as though the market is either at a turning point or it is looking to prepare for continuation; unlike previous weeks, it is a less clear picture.

Daily chart

BTC USD daily chart. Source: TradingViewBTC USD daily chart. Source: TradingView

The daily chart clearly shows the downward trending channel in which Bitcoin has spent months trading, defined by lower highs and lower lows. The lower 25% of the channel has acted as support and resistance throughout the downtrend and is once again being tested. 

The outcome is normally an explosive move up or a retest of the bottom of the channel. The 50% retracement of the channel is currently at $8,200 and would represent a reasonable breakout target. A retest of the channel could possibly occur at $6,500. 

The MACD histogram shows that there is bullish divergence forming and the MACD line itself has crossed bullish and plotted a higher low which is also a sign of bullish divergence.

The on-balance volume indicator (OBV), a tool that is demonstrative of the directional strength of cumulative volume, also shows a bullish divergence which is concurrent with the decreasing volume on the weekly chart. The OBV is however still trending down and a break out may imply a turn in the market. 

Overall, the daily chart shows a reasonable case for the bulls but is strongly defined by the downtrend which must be respected.

4-hour chart

BTC USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingViewBTC USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

The 4-hour chart shows that Bitcoin is trading within a horizontal range between $7,900 and $6,500 and the digital asset has found support at the equilibrium of the two local extremities. At present, the 50% Fibonacci retracement ($7,200) is acting as support. 

This is a positive sign for the bulls who hope to retest the upper $7,000s. However, failure to hold above $7,000 will almost inevitably lead to a retest of $6,500 which is in line with the downward channel on the daily chart. At present, the price action is leaning bullish but only marginally.

If the bulls can reach out and close in the upper $7,000s, Bitcoin price will complete an Adam and Eve pattern, which would imply that a move well into the $8,000s and as high at $9,000 would be possible. This would be quite significant and does make sense as it would mean Bitcoin reclaimed the previous weekly trading range, but at this stage is just pure conjecture rather than a direct prediction of an imminent move. 

On the 4-hour timeframe, the MACD is reaching out towards the zero line, painting a higher high on the histogram, both of which are supporting the bullish case in the market. Trading volume is also declining within the range which implies that the market is winding up to make a definitive move.

BTC USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingViewBTC USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

Looking forward

In summary, the market remains in a downtrend so any bullish signs must be taken somewhat lightly. However, it is clear across all timeframes that Bitcoin’s price action is attempting to flip to the bullish side. 

There are signs in the trading volume and the momentum in which the decline has somewhat subsided. The likely outcome is that there will be more volatility within this current consolidation before Bitcoin makes more of a definitive move to retest previous critical weekly support and resistance levels.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the (@filbfilb) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Private Blockchain Browser Brave Doubles Monthly Active Users in 2019

Privacy-oriented blockchain web browser Brave has seen its monthly active users (MAU) almost double from 5.5 million in 2018 to 10.4 million in 2019. At the same time, Brave’s daily active users (DAU) have tripled over the past year to reach 3.3 million, the firm announced Dec. 5.

According to the company, the recent growth in MAU follows the release of Brave’s new version, Brave 1.0, on Nov. 13. According to the blog post, Brave expanded its MAU base from 8.7 million in October to over 10 million at the end of November.

12x increase in new publishers

Alongside a spike in active users, Brave also recorded a 12-time increase in verified publishers that are registered to receive Brave’s built-in tokens — Basic Attention Tokens (BAT) — for sharing content.

According to data from BATGrowth — a site that tracks Brave browser adoption — the total number of Brave publishers was 341,880 as of Dec. 6. In contrast, Brave had just 28,000 verified publishers at the beginning of 2019.

Brave continues to grow after launching crypto tipping on social media

A number of reports show that Brave is becoming increasingly popular. Brave reportedly overtook its major competitors like Chrome, Firefox and Opera in Japanese Google Play in September. 

Mozilla co-founder and JavaScript creator Brendan Eich first announced by Brave in 2016. The browser allows users to tip on major social media platforms including Twitter, ad-free video platform Vimeo and social news site Reddit using Brave’s BAT token.

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Thai Police Arrest 24 Chinese Nationals for Alleged Bitcoin Scam

Thai immigration officials have arrested 24 Chinese nationals who were running an alleged cryptocurrency scam call center in the Rama III neighborhood of Bangkok.

According to an official announcement on Dec. 2, the Immigration Bureau of the Royal Thai Police arrested 24 individuals, seized 61 laptops, 424 mobile phones and several routers. 

The Immigration Bureau further states that the head of the operation would hire employees on three-month contracts, wherein all their expenses were paid including a 5,000 yuan ($710) monthly salary. After arriving, workers would surrender their passports to the head of the operation. Employees would work shifts from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. 

The alleged scammers would lure Chinese investors to buy Bitcoin (BTC), ostensibly fudging rates in order to make a profit.  

Thai police target telephone scams

Local news daily Chiang Rai Times states that the Immigration Bureau has busted a number of call center scams operated by Chinese nationals. Earlier today, Immigration police raided a stock speculation scheme run by Chinese teenagers. 54 minors were reportedly arrested at a Thai resort hotel for duping Chinese-based investors into investing in bogus stocks. 

Scammers reportedly had a target to raise 5 million Thai baht ($165,000) from investors that they met in internet chat rooms. Police are still in pursuit of the operation’s organizer who, like the head of the purported Bitcoin scam, is in possession of the employees’ passports. 

Crypto trading comes with caveats in Thailand

While trading cryptocurrencies in Thailand is legal, the country has a regulatory framework and compliance standards for the industry.

Both the issuance of tokens and the trading of cryptocurrencies in a secondary market are regulated by law under a series of decrees. In cryptocurrency exchanges, acceptable trading pairs for cryptocurrencies are either the country’s fiat currency, the baht, or cryptocurrencies which have been approved by the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission. 

Additionally cryptocurrency-related business must be considered a financial institution under the country’s Anti-Money Laundering, Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Know Your Customer Regulations.

As Cointelegraph recently reported, lawmakers in Thailand plan to reform cryptocurrency laws amid concerns that such regulations make the country uncompetitive.

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Kraken Cryptocurrency Exchange Adds Support For the Swiss Franc

San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is adding support for its latest fiat asset, the Swiss franc (CHF).

According to a blog post on Dec. 5, Kraken said that in collaboration with Liechtenstein-based Bank Frick, the Swiss franc will join the roster of fiat currencies that Kraken already supports, namely the United States dollar (USD), the Canadian dollar (CAD), the euro (EUR), the British pound sterling (GBP), and the Japanese yen (JPY).

The Kraken team further revealed that CHF trading begins on Friday, Dec. 6, and that it will roll out trading pairs between the Swiss franc and Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH), with the future possibility to add more trading pairs.

Kraken, one of the largest and oldest Bitcoin exchanges in the world, recently announced that it was joining the Silvergate Exchange Network (SEN) to enable its customers to deposit and withdraw U.S. dollars from Silvergate accounts with no fees. 

Prior to that, Kraken introduced the mobile version of its Kraken Future trading app, which was created earlier this year and was previously only available on a web browser. The app will be available on both the iOS and Android platforms.

Kraken added support for OmiseGo and PAX Gold

In October, the exchange listed OmiseGO (OMG) and PAX Gold (PAXG) tokens.

According to data from Coin360, Kraken is the 9th largest cryptocurrency exchange by 24-hour trade volume, reportedly reaching $103.9 million over the last day.

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Deutsche Bank Research: Crypto to Replace Fiat Currencies by 2030

By 2030, the demand for alternative currencies will rise, with digital currencies eventually replacing cash, according to recent research from Deutsche Bank.

In the “Imagine 2030” report, Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid raised awareness of the challenges the existing fiat system has encountered in recent years, specifically with the emergence of cryptocurrencies. Reid stipulated that people’s heightened demand for dematerialized means of payment and anonymity could drive more individuals to digital currencies.

Mainstream adoption and co-occurring challenges

In order to gain wider acceptance, digital assets need to overcome three major hurdles. These include perceived legitimacy in the eyes of governments and regulators, which entails price stability and allows for global reach in the payment market. According to Reid, the establishment of alliances with key stakeholders like mobile apps and card providers will enable this development.

At the same time, Reid pointed out that with mainstream adoption, new challenges will arise. Among major threats to the purported digital currency-based financial system, Reid named dependence on electricity, cyberattacks and a digital war. “As that occurs, the line between cryptocurrencies, financial institutions, and public and private sectors may become blurred,” Reid wrote.

Countries examine CBDC

In the meantime, world governments have been actively debating the need to develop national digital currencies. Earlier today, Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said that there is no public demand for a central bank digital currency (CBDC) in the country. Kuroda noted the increasing demand for cash payments and added that the bank had been conducting technical and legal research into the matter.

The British Virgin Islands has taken a more proactive approach to CBDCs, announcing that the country is developing a digital currency dubbed BVI~LIFE in collaboration with blockchain startup LifeLabs. The currency is part of a broader initiative to grow the local fintech sector. It will be pegged to the U.S. dollar.

The central bank of France plans to pilot a CBDC for financial institutions in 2020.

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Bitcoin Recovers from Below $7.2K After Schiff Says ‘Game Is Over’

Thursday, Dec. 5 — cryptocurrency markets have continued to trade sideways, with 18 of the top 20 coins by market cap seeing notable losses at press time.

After Bitcoin (BTC) attempted another recovery yesterday to break above $7,500, the biggest cryptocurrency has dipped below the $7,200 threshold again today.

Among the few coins that report some green at the time of this writing, Unus Sed Leo (LEO) is seeing the biggest growth, up 0.4%. In contrast, Algorand (ALGO), is seeing the biggest losses among the top 20, down more than 6% according to data from Coin360.

Market visualization. Source: Coin360

Market visualization. Source: Coin360

After failing to hold the $7,500 support yesterday, Bitcoin saw a sharp drop below the $7,200 price point earlier on the day before another recovery attempt. At press time, Bitcoin is trading at $7,383, down 1.4% over the past 24 hours, with an intraday low of $7,179, according to Coin360.

Bitcoin’s price dynamics look worse over the past week as the cryptocurrency lost 2.7% over a seven day period to date. Over a 30-day perspective, the trend is even worse, as Bitcoin has slipped more than 20% from around $9,346 on Nov. 5.

Bitcoin’s recent price fluctuations came amidst a transaction that moved nearly $9 million in BTC in a single hour yesterday.

According to gold bug and famous crypto skeptic Peter Schiff, the recent movements in Bitcoin’s price show that Bitcoin cannot attract any new buyers and the game is over. He tweeted on Dec. 4:

“Bitcoin pump & dumpers are losing their mojo. They managed to pump the price by $550 in one minute, a 7.5% spike. Yet the dump reversed the entire pump with an 8% drop in just 7.5 hours. If #Bitcoin pumpers can no longer sucker in new buyers the game is over. Look out below!”

Meanwhile, Bloomberg analysts have recently predicted that Bitcoin will see $6,500 as good support and $10,000 as initial resistance in 2020. The experts added that most of their indicators demonstrate that dipping below $6,500 is unlikely.

Bitcoin 24-hour price chart. Source: Coin360

Bitcoin 24-hour price chart. Source: Coin360

Ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap and the top altcoin, is down by .01% to trade at $149 at the time of publication.

Ether seven-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Ether seven-day price chart. Source: Coin360

XRP, the third top cryptocurrency by market cap, slipped by 0.1%, trading at $0.219.

Ripple seven-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Ripple seven-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Total market capitalization of all cryptos amounts to $200 billion at press time.

Keep track of top crypto markets in real time here

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Cointelegraph Announces Chinese HQ, Bolstering Its International Expansion

To support our international expansion and global reach, Cointelegraph is delighted to announce the launch of the Chinese-language version of the publication. Today, Dec. 4, we celebrated the opening of the office of Cointelegraph China (Cointelegraph 中文).

The news — which marks another milestone moment in Cointelegraph’s growth — was announced at the Nova Global Blockchain Investment Institutions Summit hosted by the investment ecosystem alliance, Nova Club. Nova Club was formed by top blockchain organizations and aims to facilitate blockchain project development by consolidating resources and expertise.

The new expansion will be led by Vadim Krekotin from the heart of Guangzhou, with other offices in Beijing and Shanghai.

Meet the Cointelegraph China business team

Cointelegraph China has brought together leading names in the industry to highlight blockchain and crypto trends in the area. 

Kevin Shao is a co-founder of Cointelegraph China as well as a general manager at crypto mining equipment manufacturer Canaan-Blockchain. Shao’s professional background includes serving at Bank of China’s fintech and technology department.

Kevin Ren, a co-founder of Cointelegraph China and also a founding partner of venture capital firm Consensus Lab, has a double masters in computer science and business administration. Ren, who worked as a partner in a range of VC firms, currently holds managing positions at industry-wide associations and unions in the country.

Simon Li is another co-founder of Cointelegraph China and a founding partner of Chain Capital and Nova Club. Li focuses on mining, investment into blockchain projects, and initiating and managing blockchain investment funds.

Co-founder Vadim Krekotin will manage Cointelegraph China’s initial launch. He previously founded advisory blockchain firm the CBE Foundation. Vadim is fluent in Mandarin and has a long history of conducting business in China, which has brought him in contact with the country’s biggest industry players including Binance, Huobi, OkEX and many others. 

Stay tuned for editorial team

We will soon be announcing the Cointelegraph China editorial team. Our editorial team will produce the highest quality journalism for our readers in China, holding steadfast to the values of editorial independence and responsibility to our readers.

Cointelegraph China is now our third base in Asia, following the establishment of Cointelegraph Japan in Tokyo in December 2017 and Cointelegraph Korea in August of this year. China has proved itself a hub for blockchain development, with the support of President Xi Jinping and a slew of blockchain-related patents filed with local regulators.

The country is maintaining a hardline stance toward crypto, as cryptocurrency trading is wholly banned in China. Meanwhile, the country has declared plans to issue its own digital currency to compete with the United States dollar in the global market. Our China-based team will work consistently to raise awareness in the region and deliver readers a clear insight into significant industry developments.

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Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler Appointed to US Senate Seat

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has appointed Kelly Loeffler, CEO of institutional Bitcoin (BTC) futures platform Bakkt, to a United States Senate seat.

With the appointment, Loeffler will replace Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA), who plans to retire at the end of the year, the Washington Post reported on Dec. 4. A person familiar with the matter, shared Loeffler’s remarks with the publication, in which she ostensibly said:

“I haven’t spent my life trying to get to Washington. But here’s what folks are gonna find out about me: I’m a lifelong conservative. Pro-Second Amendment. Pro-military. Pro-wall. And pro-Trump. I make no apologies for my conservative values, and will proudly support President Trump’s conservative judges.”

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, various party leaders, including President Donald Trump, reportedly pressed Kemp to choose U.S. representative Doug Collins instead, purportedly given his strong support for Trump, gun rights and anti-abortion efforts.

The President and many among his followers are not sold on Loeffler, viewing her as too moderate. Previously, Kemp reportedly met with the President and Loeffler in a bid to obtain Trump’s approval of his pick for the Senate seat but to no avail.

Bakkt’s recent developments

In the meantime, Bitcoin futures open interest on the Bakkt platform hit a new all-time high of $6.5 million on Dec. 3. The reported open interest was a 42% increase from the previous day, which had been an all-time high as well.

Also, Bakkt is planning to launch the first regulated options contract for Bitcoin futures on Dec. 9. The new options product is based on customer feedback, explained Loeffler, and is designed to hedge or gain bitcoin exposure. Bakkt added:

“ICE Futures U.S. has self-certified the contract with the CFTC and we’re excited to leverage the benchmark futures prices and institutional-grade custody to meet the needs for a regulated options contract.”

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Researchers Detect New North Korea-Linked MacOS Malware on Crypto Trading Site

Security researchers have discovered a new cryptocurrency-related macOS malware believed to be the product of North Korean hackers at the Lazarus Group.

As tech-focused publication Bleeping Computer reported on Dec. 4, malware researcher Dinesh Devadoss encountered a malicious software on a website called “,” that advertised a “smart cryptocurrency arbitrage trading platform.” The website did not cite any download links, but hosted a malware package under the name “UnionCryptoTrader.”

Linkage to North Korean hackers

According to the researchers, the malware can retrieve a payload from a remote location and run it in memory, which is not common for macOS, but more typical for Windows. This feature makes it difficult to detect the malware and carry out forensic analysis. Per VirusTotal, an online service for analyzing and detecting viruses and malware, only 10 antivirus engines flagged it as malicious at press time.

After conducting an analysis of the newly detected malware, security researcher Patrick Wardle determined “clear overlaps” with malware found by MalwareHunterTeam in mid-October, which purportedly led to the Lazarus group. At the time, the researchers detected that Lazarus had created another malware targeting Apple Macs that masquerades behind a fake cryptocurrency firm.

Recent North Korea-related developments

In recent months, there has been plenty of news about North Korea-related developments. In late November, United States prosecutors announced the arrest of Virgil Griffith, who allegedly traveled to North Korea to deliver a presentation on how to use crypto and blockchain technology to circumvent sanctions.

Following the arrest, Ethereum (ETH) co-founder Vitalik Buterin declared his solidarity with Virgil Griffith, having supported a petition to free the blockchain developer.

The United Nations Security Council’s Sanctions Committee on North Korea accused the country of using a Hong Kong-based blockchain firm as a front to launder money. 

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