The Euro dropped for a fifth consecutive day against the US Dollar, setting a new 28-month low against the US Dollar. A daily close below the 61.8% Fibonacci expansion at 1.2173 exposes the 76.4% level at 1.2080. Alternatively, a reversal above the 50% Fib at 1.2249 opens the door for a test of the 38.2% expansion at 1.2324.
Risk/reward considerations argue against entering short with prices in close proximity to support. We will remain flat for now, waiting until an attractive selling opportunity in line with our long-term outlook presents itself.
It is understandably a very quiet day with the stock markets in Italy and Germany closed for the Christmas Eve. Elsewhere, most traders are probably out today too although that does not necessarily mean the markets won’t move. In fact, the lack of volume means there could be bouts of high volatility. Still, that will be kept to a minimum given that it is going to be a shortened trading day. The London Stock Exchange will close at 12:30 GMT, with the European exchanges following suit at 13:05 GMT. In the US, the markets will also close early with US futures open for trade until 18:15 GMT. In London, the main mover is Smith & Nephew, which is up 7% after Bloomberg reported that US surgical implant maker Stryker was planning a takeover bid for the company in the coming weeks. But generally investors are exercising a bit of caution after the S&P warned of downgrading Russia while the Greek short-term bond yields are back above 10% with just 5 days to go until the third and final round of voting in the presidential election. If the coalition government fails to secure a majority of the vote then it will lead to an early general election in February. The big fear is that the radical anti-bailout Syriza party could be voted to power.
The price of BTC had increased in value significantly over the years, reaching $19,600 at its highest peak – and the exchange rate rests at $8,500 today. This is a stark contrast to just over a year ago when the digital currency’s value was under $1,000 per coin. Since the fiat value has increased so much it has made some early investors very rich. Moreover, there’s one group of early adopters that no one likes to talk about — darknet market vendors.
Whether people like to talk about it or not, darknet markets (DNM) exist, and some people believe vices are not crimes. Some well-known bitcoiners have made millions gathering the currency in the early days but there are also anonymous millionaires that people will never know. DNM operators and vendors are among bitcoin’s earliest adopters since the inception of the first modern DNM the Silk Road launched in 2011. Estimates detail that the Silk Road took in $30-45 million annually with 146,946 buyers in 2013 and 3,877 vendors. When the Silk Road collapsed in October of 2013 many of those vendors moved on to newer DNMs and many of them still exist today.
Crypto whales are generally thought of as wealthy traders with the ability to move markets via a single sell order. Yet the greatest whales of all aren’t traders but ICOs which own millions of ether worth billions of dollars. Over 3% of the total ethereum supply is estimated to be in the hands of ICOs, and when those projects cash out, as periodically happens, the effects can be dramatic.
On Sunday, while the crypto markets were enduring yet more turmoil, ethereum took a sudden nosedive, going from $516 to $464 in under two hours. Up until then, it had been one of the more stable coins compared to alts still in the experimental stage, which have absorbed the worst of the losses. Ethereum’s flash drop made it one of the worst performers in the cryptocurrency top 100 yesterday, shaving around 16% off its valuation. The cause of the sell-off has been attributed to one of last year’s ICOs offloading a significant portion of its ethereum reserves. If so, it’s not the first time something like this has happened, and it certainly won’t be the last.