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Bitcoin and cryptocurrency news round-up: 18 January 2018

Posted: 18 January 2018 6:51 pm

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What you need to know.

Cryptocurrency markets bounce like a ball, Bitconnect bugs off, Japan's biggest bank gets very bullish on crypto and Alibaba launches a cloud miner of its very own.

Meanwhile a new report brings a scathing critique to bitcoin and Ethereum inefficiency while IBM inks a game-changing blockchain deal that's worth watching very closely.

1. The markets bounce back

That didn't last long. After a short respite in the red it's back to green across the board again, with most of the top coins by market cap showing double digit growth in the space of just a few hours. Whether they bounce back higher than they started remains to be seen, and almost certainly depends on which coin you're looking at.

2. Bitconnect is down for the count

There are only so many fraud allegations, and cease and desist notices, that a coin can take.

Bitconnect died as it lived; mired in a storm of controversy and "I told you so". Bitconnect (2017-2018) is survived by a few thousand angry investors and some important lessons worth learning.

3. Japan's biggest bank embraces cryptocurrency

MUFG is the largest bank in Japan and the fourth-largest in the world. It's also making some extremely assertive moves into the cryptocurrency space, starting with its own coin and exchange, and ending with a managed bitcoin fund for clients that want more security in the cyber-economy.

If you like the sound of a bank-backed Yen Tether cryptocurrency, you'll want to know all about it.

4. Alibaba launches its own cloud mining platform

Alibaba is releasing its own cloud mining platform called P2P Nodes.

It was reportedly completed in October 2017 but appears to have been staying under wraps for now, with relatively little known about it.

5. Bitcoin and Ethereum get the rundown

An in-depth report has given both bitcoin and Ethereum lacklustre grades.

The study critiques bitcoin's deliberate-seeming inefficiency, Ethereum's accidental-seeming inefficiency and suggests ways for both of them to get more from their hashing power.

6. IBM and Maersk plan world domination

IBM is a global computing giant, Maersk is the world's largest shipping company and together they're an ideal testing ground and solutions-provider for blockchain in the real world. The partnership will take the form of a joint venture that stands to literally change the world in a way that you probably won't notice except retrospectively.

It also stands to get in the way of a few coins that were eyeing the exact same supply chain management market, so everyone has a lot of reasons to pay close attention to this.

There's also a genuinely good video highlighting the very real applications of blockchain in the real world, if you're into that kind of thing.

Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering. It is not a recommendation to trade. Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks – they are highly volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before relying on this information. You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators' websites before making any decision. Finder, or the author, may have holdings in the cryptocurrencies discussed.

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