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An executive order has been issued by the U.S. President Donald Trump to ban the US Citizens from buying Petro cryptocurrency. Petro is first state-issued cryptocurrency developed by the government of Venezuela.

Further more, Trump has issued strict orders to the Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin, to implement this ban. Earlier this year, the Treasury Department also announced sanctions on four Venezuelan government officials.

Why was Petro Launched?

The cryptocurrency Petro was launched in February 2018, which could be purchased through US dollars and euros. At the time of its launch, it was claimed to be backed by the oil and mineral reserves of the Venezuelan government. According to some critics, if investors once started buying Petro, it could easily support the official currency of Venezuela, which is steadily falling down mainly due to US-imposed financial sanctions.

Reason for Trump’s Ban on Petro

As mentioned above, the ban was an attempt to put pressure on the Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and his undue policies. As a result, the efforts of Maduro’s government to boost their foreign currency reserves have been greatly affected.

US Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin stated that President Maduro destroyed the Venezuelan economy which gave rise to a destructive humanitarian crisis in Venezuela. Instead of improving the present condition of their citizens, the Venezuelan government is trying to bypass the US sanctions through its Petro digital currency. In short, the Venezuelan President is trying to loot the resources of his people.

Effect of Trump’s ban on Petro

According to many critics, it is probably a quiet big blow for the Venezuelan government. Since most of the cryptocurrencies and their present market value is based upon the US dollar, so when we take the role of US out of that scene, the interest and potential rate for any of the cryptocurrency is also automatically reduced.

At a stage when Petro was struggled to create some serious interest among foreign governments, the ban by Trump will be extremely fatal. Earlier this year, Poland had also shown an interest in trading food and medicine with the Venezuelan government for the Petro, which was denied due to the sanctions imposed by the US president.

Let us know your point of view about all this in the comments below!

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Binance Hack – What Is Confusing Its Users?

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Binance is the largest crypto-exchange by trading volume, however, on 7th March, its users got affected by a hack of third-party software, and as a result, unauthorized transactions were made from their user’s accounts.
Since then, Binance’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao has claimed that the exchange is working normally and the funds of users are safe as well. Many users have shown their concern and complained by using social media platforms; Twitter and Reddit, that without their permission, their altcoins had been converted into Bitcoin and most of them didn’t even logged into their accounts.

There were many posts on Reddit, claiming that hackers have used their bitcoins for buying VIA coins for 0.025 BTC each. Without attracting any attention, hackers managed to withdrew the bitcoins in small amounts. It’s claimed by a Reddit user, Profetu, that Binance’s administration took actions to the complaints of their users by freezing their accounts in one hour. Furthermore, the user suggested;

“The hacker accumulated VIA in advance (from Binance or other exchange and sent to Binance) then he set a huge sell order at 0.025BTC. Then using API made some account sell alts and buy VIA with that BTC, [and then withdrew] BTC.”

Another user wrote;

“Same happened to me. I had 100% USDT worth $1548. Today I logged in so I can buy some xrp, but my account balance is $200 out of $1548, and apparently I bought 5 VIA coins and exchanged my USDT to BTC while I was in the gym?”

Few traders have presented a theory that the attack was linked with compromised API keys which had been requested by Binance’s users to further use inside the range of other applications such as; chart in monitoring services and trading bots. This theory also explains how the attackers have managed to pass over the two-factor authentication. But at the same time, it fails to explain why this attack affected the users who never requested API keys.

A user asked;

“Do you use any trading bots like profittrailer or gunbot? Do you have any API opened for any kind of services?” – Bonnie_channel

Another Reddit user wrote;

“That is what I am wondering! I never gave permission for this API key to be created. That is why I think it’s an issue on [Binance’s] end”.

Later, a tweet was posted by Binance, saying that deposits and withdrawals are now in a working condition and all illegitimate trades have been rebounded. Changpeng Zhao also said that a phishing website has been used by hackers to get the login information and to divert users from the authentic Binance website.

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Bitcoin Value Graph- Complete Information About Bitcoin Prices

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Bitcoin’s cost is measured by fiat money, for example, American Dollars, Euro, etc. Bitcoin, therefore, appears similar to any symbol traded on trade markets.

Unlike fiat, however, there is no official Bitcoin cost; just different averages in light of price feeds from worldwide exchanges. Bitcoin Average and CoinDesk are two such names detailing the average cost. It’s typical for Bitcoin to trade at a price marginally different to the normal price.

But inconsistencies aside, what factors determine the price of bitcoins? well, the main factor is supply and demand. The fact that bitcoin is limited in nature leaves the currency mainly at the mercy of supply and demand. When the Bitcoin demand is high, supply drops, and the price goes up and vice versa.

Bitcoin price history is very interesting. In 2009, which was its first year it was just $0.39 per bitcoin. now it is valued at more than $7,000.00 per BTC. Stunning isn’t it.

Here is a Bitcoin value graph giving you an idea of how its price has moved over the years:

Looking at this Bitcoin value graph, it can be easily determined that Bitcoin value has been on a constant rise over the last couple of years, and the trend is expected to continue in the future as well.

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WARNING! Hong Kong Regulator Says ICOs are ‘Downright Fraud’

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Hong Kong securities regulator has once again warned the public about Initial Coin Offering investment. The deputy chief of Honk Kong SFC (Securities and Futures Commission), Julia Leung, repeated the previous concerns of perils related to ICOs, in a speech which took place on Friday.

While emphasizing that the interests of regulators lie in protecting the investment of public first, Leung said:

“While we acknowledge that innovative technologies such as blockchain have the potential to improve efficiency and financial inclusion, that does not entitle anyone to conduct fundraising from the public in violation of securities law.”

Obscurity for Investors

As Leung is the chair of the SFC’s Fintech Advisory Group, she claimed that it would be difficult for an average investor to decrypt the extreme-technical-content and obscurity of few projects that are in quest of fundraising, as she stated that it was more suitable for proficient investors from VC funds instead. Her remarks then drew the attention to projects that claim to use blockchain technology as a “slogan” to vow high-tech claims without any innovation to fulfil those promises.

Julia Leung also added:

“Many of these fundraisings are dubious, if not downright frauds. The issuers escape the scrutiny of the police or securities regulators because of their cross-border nature and the way the crypto assets are structured to fall outside any regulator’s perimeter.”

Warning Against ICOs

These comments pursue an earlier statement, in which guidelines were provided for ICO issuers that must be followed ahead of fundraising operation. Certain ICOs could be considered as securities as well, according to Leung. Since the scrutiny, the regulator has issued a warning letter to almost seven exchanges along with domestic presence, prompting them not to trade cryptocurrency tokens as it sees them as securities without a license.

The regulator said:

“The SFC will continue to closely monitor ICOs and will not tolerate any violations of the securities laws of Hong Kong.”

Seeing growing public interest, the authorities of Hong Kong launched a “public awareness campaign” at the beginning of this year to enlighten general public about the Initial Coin Offering investment and cryptocurrencies by using, articles, advertisements, and infographics.

In her speech, Leung also pointed out the volatility of bitcoin price and added:

“Many millennials who subscribe to digital tokens in ICOs5 understand that there is no intrinsic value in the tokens but are betting on the rapid rise of the token value in the secondary market.”

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Burger King Launches Own Cryptocurrency In Russia – WhopperCoin

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Burger King has taken the world by a storm as they launched their all new cryptocurrency “WhopperCoin” in Russia.

Reportedly, with each purchase of their signature Whopper sandwich, customers can now get WhopperCoin tokens through a digital wallet. The token is based upon the Waves blockchain.  It allows users to trade, transfer and issue tokens, on an integrated peer-to-peer exchange.

Customers can transfer and trade their coins online or simply use them to purchase food from BK. Although, the actual exchange rate for such transactions has not been revealed yet.

Just a year ago, Bitcoin users were threatened with being thrown in jail if they were ever caught using cryptocurrencies but that was soon to change. It is pleasing to know that the Russian Government has relaxed its grudge on cryptocurrencies.

The Burger King chain is set to launch an app for the digital tokens in both the Apple Store and Google Play in the coming future.

 

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Altcoins to compete with Bitcoin, the world’s leading digital currency

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Bitcoin has started the month by hitting an all-time high of $1500, with maintaining its peak at $1441.39 in the month of April. The announcement of Japan officially recognizing Bitcoin as a legal payment method and that Russia’s lawmakers plan to release their ban off Bitcoin, has been extremely beneficial to Bitcoin’s new climb.

However, it’s opposing Altcoins are having their share of the spotlight as well.

 

Ether

Ethereum’s Ether is the second largest digital currency. It recently crossed its $15 mark and has reached its new target of $80. This has created a buzz in the cryptocurrency world and merchants might even adopt this currency side by side. Further testing and improvements, to the Ethereum’s blockchain, are said to be taking place in the future. All in all, this might give the currency an even bigger boost in the coming weeks.

Ripple

The Ripple network is being embraced by a large number of financial institutions to process domestic and cross-border payments. This has caused a sharp increase in the digital currency. It had an impressive jump from $0.0054 on March 1 to $0.054 on May 1.

Litecoin

Litecoin was created to be the “silver” to bitcoin’s “gold”. It’s been having an impressive rally, ever since the talk of “SegWit Implementation” has begun. The price of Litecoin has jolted from $6.74, to surpass the $15 mark on April 25.

Today, as we watch bitcoin alternative becoming increasingly popular, the amount of in-flight trade in goods using Bitcoin means that the value must increase in order to cover the value of the goods. As there is a limited supply of Bitcoin and the supply will only increase slowly over time to a maximum of 21 million, the increase in trade volumes will result in an increase in Bitcoin value.

While Altcoins are drawing a lot of attention towards themselves, let’s not forget that they are also riskier investments than bitcoin, because after all, they are untested and relatively unstable. Also, their prices can drop faster than they rose.

This is something to keep in mind when making your next altcoin currency in the current market state.

Tags: Largest digital currencies

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