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Bitcoin - How we got here?

     
2:53 pm on Jan 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Brilliant in depth article on the history of Crypto and how we got to where we are (required reading):

[hackernoon.com...]

From the beginning, it was a mystery. In 2008, someone using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto published a paper to a cryptography mailing list. It was called Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.

Little did anyone know that, on paper, at its height, it would establish an entire market (the crypto market) valued at $800B. That’s more money than Coca Cola, McDonald’s, Ford, Caterpillar, Nike, Nintendo, and Goldman Sachs combined. You’d think the author would step forward at some point during Bitcoin’s meteoric rise. When his personal wealth surpassed $1B, you’d imagine somebody would uncover him, and when it reached an estimated $19.4B, you’d assume the IRS would come knocking.

But nobody has even been able to track down the mysterious Nakamoto. And that’s part of the appeal of Bitcoin. For those who don’t know, Bitcoin is like a digital dollar.
5:33 pm on Jan 27, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Not a good article in many ways.

From what I have read cryptocurrency is not all that popular for crime and organised crime (apart from the now defunct silk road) and its anonymity is not all that solid.

It has no underlying value, but neither do fiat currencies.

The "EU ruling (for no reason) that Bitcoin sales will not be taxed." only applies to VAT and is perfectly reasonable - otherwise every time someone bought bitcoin they would have to pay the govt 15% or more (20% in the UK) of its value. its the usual rule for currencies and financial instruments of any kind.
1:28 am on Jan 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I don't see Uncle Sam sitting by idly, watching its exclusive right to print more money, wither away. Imagine if the US actually had to pay its debt, lookout!
3:29 am on Jan 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I don't see Uncle Sam sitting by idly, watching its exclusive right to print more money, wither away.

Exclusive really, I always thought other countries were able to print money too. Pounds, Yen, Euro, Pesos, Canadian Pesos :0).
2:48 pm on Jan 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I think this talk of 'currency' will slowly fade away. Having studied crypto indepth for a couple years, I think it is better to think of Crypto as securities and not currency. Clearly, crypto coins news and noise has gone mainstream. If Crypto coins are currency, where is the rush to accept them as fiat/tender-for-trade? It's not happening, because crypto is ill suited for commerce. It is awesomely suited for securities exchange across borders (eg: it's gold, it's not greenbacks).
4:58 pm on Feb 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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@Brett, I have been thinking the same. People are definitely using Bitcoin, for example, as a store of value. How stable a store only time will tell.

On the other hand some people are trying cryptocurrencies that are better suited for payment - Bitcoin is too slow and expensive.
5:18 pm on Feb 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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It's changing, for sure, and until it finds its place there will continue to be winners and losers.
The market is down over 50% from the recent highs. [coindesk.com...]

Britain's biggest bank has become the first to announce a ban on customers using credit cards to buy Bitcoin amid fears they could run up huge losses.

I'm not in the least bit surprised by this decision of Lloyds, after all, credit cards are credit, and not a users' own money.

[telegraph.co.uk...]
5:30 pm on Feb 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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and in other news: Litecoin is ready to launch a visa credit card....go figure.

[express.co.uk...]
LitePay is the payment processor of Litecoin and it means businesses will be able to accept payment in Litecoin and the company’s Litecoin-exclusive debit card from anywhere in the world.

LitePay will allow businesses to accept Litecoin payments by instantly processing the payments that are settled directly with their banks.

The cryptocurrency is stored in a digital wallet where you can manage your Litecoin payments and activity and load the coins onto the LitePay Visa card.
6:38 pm on Feb 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I think Lloyds are being sensible. Some American banks have done the same.

There is a big difference between lending for consumer credit and lending for people to speculate. People are more sensible (not necessarily all that sensible!) about consumer credit than they are when they think they are chasing a hot asset class. They become a lot more likely to run up debts they cannot pay.

It is also a heavily correlated risk: if a lot of Lloyds customers buy vast amounts of Bitcoin with credit cards, and bitcoin then crashes, then Lloyds will be faced with a lot of bad debt at once, not the percentage they expect every month. At that point they have a problem

The Litepay thing makes sense to me. It make it more attractive as:

1. it lets a business using litepay spend in dollars through the card (only dollars so far).
2. it lets people with a litecoin wallet (I have a nasty feeling its a hosted one) use it at both merchants who accept litecoin and those that accept Visa.