# How high can Bitcoin go?

Discussion in 'Business & Economics' started by Saint, Nov 7, 2017.

1. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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especially to Russian viagra and pharma sellers, booters and spammers, not to mention hacking services from North Korea, and most importantly, especially now that Bitcoin is becoming more legitimized.

3. ### SarkusHippomonstrosesquippedalo phobeValued Senior Member

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So you accept that there is value in blockchain technology, at least to some people?
Yet people speculating on this value you see as a scam??

Basically all I see is someone who doesn't fully understand what the fuss is all about, and is envious of people getting wealthy off the back of it that you must rationalise your non-involvement by repeatedly calling it a scam.

5. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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There is nothing scammy about Bitcoin or Blockchain. It is the false representation as to the value of the units derived and the very poor chance that those pseudo values will increase and an even poorer chance that they can redeem their coins for fiat currency with out selling them to someone gullible enough to buy them.
Are you prepared to invest 10k USD in a single coin knowing fully well it has next to zero purchasing value?
Are you prepared to tell some naive but greedy mum or dad investor that he can make money gambling his/her life savings on a speculation by buying YOUR coins that is less secure than playing red on a roulette wheel at a casino ( for a fee of course)
If so you are scamming...

How much do you want for your coins Sarkus? ( assuming you own some)

Last edited: Jan 3, 2018

7. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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One of the founders of PayPal Peter Thiel has recently bought millions of Bitcoin - reported about a report last Tuesday
see graph from https://bitcoin.com :

Bitcoin had just taken a huge tumble.
Thiel apparently already holds a few million of them.
Perhaps he is buying to help bounce the market? Afterall he stands to lose millions if the bubble blows...

8. ### SarkusHippomonstrosesquippedalo phobeValued Senior Member

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Despite your previous claims that blockchain was a scam? Thank you for your clarification.
I own some coins, but not Bitcoin. I have some Ethereum tokens. I am in the fortunate position that I don't need to sell them yet, though, and I can afford for them to become worthless. If they pay off long-term then it will be a nice bonus, and I might buy the Aston Martin I've always wanted. If they don't then so be it... I would have had some worse losses in my time.
They're not a currency for me. They have no purchasing power. They are worth only what others are prepared to buy them for. Much like any other investment, therefore.

9. ### SarkusHippomonstrosesquippedalo phobeValued Senior Member

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To clarify: his fund bought millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin. To buy "millions of Bitcoins" would currently require c.$14 billion per million Bitcoin. Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image! Certainly he would lose millions compared to current valuation, but the report suggests his holding is currently c.10x the value he paid, and if so it would have to fall a long way before he is into zero gain territory from that perspective. If he is buying more now then yes, it could be to prop up the value, but with the market worth$250 billion, it's not clear how much impact a few $million in purchases would have. There is also c.$10 billion traded every day in Bitcoins, so a few extra million is unlikely to dent the overall value too much?

10. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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Perhaps you underestimate the power of global communications media etc to sway opinion these days?
It is not the amount he has bought but the fact that he, a founder of PayPal, is buying them that matters.
Maybe it is fake news and just a beat up. "A report of a report".... hee hee I like that.....

"A run on the banks is only a tweet away" - a Trump tweet that is....

Last edited: Jan 3, 2018
11. ### SaintValued Senior Member

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3,410
BTC does not crash, today it stays around 17000

12. ### SchmelzerValued Senior Member

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What I think about this is that there is a certain market for bitcoin. Namely for all those interested in privacy. For whatever reason - they may be amoral, simply illegal, half-legal, but that does not decrease their role in the global markets. This role will increase with the government fighting against cash to increase their control over the sheeple. Given that among those who want privacy for their money are also US secret services, and the US itself too (as long as the dollar is stronger than the average currency, bitcoin helps the local elites to transfer money out of their countries mainly into the US), there will be some long enough period where the US, as well as the EU, will not openly fight against the bitcoin. During this time, it will be increasingly used by some big players - lobbies, capital transfer of big firms, bribes to politicians everywhere, the mafia, the CIA.

Let's note that there are some weak points of bitcoin which make them unusable for the everyday payments: There are actually much too large costs per transfer, and a long time for confirmation so that they are unusable for buying a cup of coffee or so. Not sure if this can be solved, the large payments per transfer can be reduced, I think, they are probably simply a consequence of the heavy increase in value, and the fact that they are in bitcoin units so that they have increased together with the bitcoin. But, even if they remain, they are irrelevant for big players.

So, there is a remaining window of opportunity for bitcoin (until the whole world unifies to fight bitcoin) and a large enough market share (all the criminal payments) which gives a large enough amount of turnover of bitcoin. It is this turnover which defines the value of the bitcoin. Given that actually you need a day for a safely transferred bitcoin, the turnover speed will remain bounded. You will not make a speculative trade with buying and selling seconds later in bitcoin. Usually one can expect that if you want to buy something, you will hold the money for this in the relevant cash around a month or so. If some illegal market has started to use bitcoin, there is a high probability that they will not stop doing this, at least not before all the states of the world unite to fight bitcoins. And this last thing becomes not very probable if the market for bribes to politicians has switched to bitcoin. This is a sufficiently large market, it secures the existence of bitcoin in the same way as it has politically secured in the past (and secures even now) all the "tax havens". I bet that the big players in the drug business were also clever enough to switch to bitcoin for international money transfers too.

It is, of course, very difficult to make expectations about the turnover in such criminal activities. Whatever one thinks about this, the most reasonable way to make expectations would be to make estimates of the turnover per person. One can expect that for every illegal activity paid actually in cash there will be, behind, somewhere a corresponding bitcoin transfer of the same size. So, make expectations about how many drugs are sold by the average person. Whatever the result of this evaluation, what follows is mathematics. Say, you estimate X \$criminal turnover per person -> X \$ bitcoin turnover per month, X \$hold by those who make these payments and compare this with the 25 Mio bitcoin / 8 billion people = 0.003 bitcoin per person. This gives the rate of the bitcoin of X \$ = 0.003 bitcoin. So, the actual rate, say, 15000 \$per bitcoin, corresponds to X = 45 \$.

Beyond the illegal markets, there are other fields attractive to bitcoin. First of all, savings. I have heard that people in Zimbabwe have started to make their savings in bitcoin. Natural, to make savings in the local currency would be stupid, savings in cash at home are vulnerable to theft, but savings in bitcoin can be protected against theft. Now, that means if the average person decides to use bitcoin for 45 \\$ of his savings, the actual rate is not speculative but safe. And there are other (legal or half-legal) markets, namely all international payments, where bitcoins may be used.

Note that the turnover of bitcoins is something which is open information (you can extract this information from the blockchain data, but I have to admit that I have not done this, too lazy), while the amount of savings is harder to estimate. But part of this is also accessible via the blockchain, by observation of the amount of bitcoin which are frozen in accounts which are not used. This combines accounts used for savings with accounts of bitcoins simply lost for technical reasons. But this does not matter much. If they are lost, they reduce the available bitcoin, thus, reduce the 0.003 bitcoin per person, thus, increase the value of a bitcoin permanently. If saved, they could be broken into the market in a bitcoin panic. So, it would be even better if they would be lost, and counting them as being saved is a safe bet. AFAIK, bitcoins not used after 2011 are around 3 Mio.

I have a quite funny evidence that politicians are already using bitcoin for illegal activities. Namely, Ukraine. There have been laws fighting corruption (enforced by the West - they have recognized that Ukraine with the actual level of corruption is useless for them, because they cannot support the government in any way, any support given to the "government" is simply distributed among the politicians for nothing in return), and these laws obliged the parliamentarians to declare all their income and property. Of course, almost all of them have, now, quite a lot of property and no plausible legal way how to get it. Of course, most of what they really own they will simply not declare. But, of course, if you have a possibility to declare some part of it (at least the visible part, namely the big car they want to drive to show they are big guys), one will use it. So guess how many of the Ukrainian parliamentarians have been able to buy such big cars? Correct, they have (or at least declared to have) successfully speculated in bitcoins.

I would, therefore, recommend you to make your own expectations about the amount of the regular turnover of illegal and half-legal markets made in bitcoin, as will private savings in bitcoin, all this in dollar per person, and then to compute the rate by comparison with the 0.003 bitcoin per person.

Do this in three variants - first, an expectation for the actual turnover/savings, to compare it with the actual rate, to estimate how much of this is speculation and how much real. Second, the variant that bitcoin remains/becomes the established leader for these activities in the future, to estimate the rate which will be maximal one without speculative bubble effects. Third, the variant that the states nonetheless unify to fight the bitcoin. (But there is no real need to estimate this, you can safely put a zero here, and consider everything you have in bitcoin as speculative with the danger of full loss.)

About the speculative part: The diagrams for the bitcoin value can be, approximately, seen as a repetition of the following scheme: Add a slow permanent (exponential, but with a fixed rate) and the usual pattern of a speculative burst (exponential growth with a much higher rate, followed by a bust which reduces it to zero). Actually, we seem to be at a zero after one such speculative bust. The picture above shows these bust peaks in June, Sept., Nov., Dec. But this scheme I have seen and described in these terms already before this. My interpretation is that the slow permanent growth describes the increase in the real value based on turnover and savings made in bitcoin. If one follows this, there would be no reason to sell bitcoin if they are down after some burst. In particular, now is not a time to sell.

The most relevant of these considerations I have made, hm, some time ago. I'm quite satisfied with the results,

as you may guess, but to make the resulting decisions was, on the other hand, much easier than now. Except for the guess that bitcoin will win the game, which is more plausible today.

Based on my own estimates, I have sold yesterday 0.1 bitcoin, but this is not in contradiction with the point above that it is not the time to sell now, but simply profit taking combined with the idea of diversification: If you have a speculative investment, take some part of the profit if it raises, and put it into safe things like gold. Once you take only a part of the profit out, the part which remains there increases in value anyway, only slower than the speculation itself. That means, you continue to profit from future raise, but, on the other hand, you will lose less if it all goes down, and your behavior decreases the bubble in the best possible for the society way - slowly, decreasing the overheated market. Note that if you decide to participate in a speculation, you also have to develop a strategy how to realize your profits. Else, you will not realize them, but lose everything once the speculative market crashes.

As a consequence of following my own profit-taking strategy as described above, I have now already what I need to remain an independent scientist forever, even if everything I have in bitcoins now becomes zero in one day.

Anyway, I have some bitcoins yet, so that I'm interested that bitcoin raises in future even more, so, evaluate the considerations above having in mind this interest. I would start selling the remaining bitcoins to minimize losses if the bitcoin goes below 9000 Euro, and sell them all at 6000 Euro because if such values would be reached, it would be clear that there is something wrong with the considerations above.

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13. ### someguy1Registered Senior Member

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This is already inaccurate. Bitcoin is the least anonymous form of money in the history of the world. Every transaction can be traced back to the creation of that coin. And your real identity is available to any government agency that brings a court order to the exchange where you traded your fiat for crypto. Consider the recent IRS ruling that Coinbase has to give up the personal information of its 14,000 largest customers.

Not only that, even without a court order people can reverse-engineer your transactions and online behavior to track you down. There are already companies doing this.

Bitcoin is not anonymous. You might as well publish your bitcoin transactions on the front page of the New York Times. If you want anonymity, use cash.

There are in fact cryptos, such as Monero, that are designed from the ground up for anonymity. They do this by mixing and tumbling transactions together so that they can't be traced. But the fiat onramps where you exchange dollars for cryptos are wide open to anyone with a court order, not to mention every hacker and criminal in the world. The exchanges are the weak point in the system and this is not going to change.

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14. ### SchmelzerValued Senior Member

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Sorry, but those who want to use bitcoin for something illegal know that they have to wash their bitcoins and know how to do this. All you can trace in the openly accessible information is a list of numbers, the account numbers of a bitcoin account, which you can create yourself at home, without having to tell anybody about this. So, your real identity is available to the government only as long as you have it on the account in the bank where you have exchanged it for fiat money. But one transaction of the bitcoins to your wallet at home and nobody knows who owns these bitcoins now.

There are, of course, some more sophisticated techniques to find out (more accurate, to guess) identities, but they work only if you don't care about this. If you (have to) care, you will wash your bitcoins, and even these techniques will give nothing beyond the following information:
1.) You have bought some bitcoins in the bank. 2.) You have transferred some bitcoins to some unknown account, not used otherwise. 3.) This unknown account has transferred the bitcoins to some other account, not used otherwise. 4.) The second unknown account has transferred the bitcoins to an identified laundry.
Whatever the police thinks about this, they cannot even prove that you have transferred the money to the laundry, because they have no way to find out who owns the accounts (2) and (3). The accounts used in (2) and (3) are in your home, in a wallet located on an encrypted partition, which does not even look like it is an encrypted partition, there are simply random bits on this partition, which is what is recommended to write on a partition if you delete it to protect your privacy. Try to prove that these are your accounts. You have simply bought something on the internet, and that the seller has done with the money, say, laundering them, you cannot know. End of the story.

So, if you want to use bitcoin to protect your privacy, you have to learn first how to do it. In particular, don't pay for illegal drugs directly from your bitcoin account in the bank where you have changed them. But once you know what to do, bitcoin is much safer than cash. Try to hide, say, a million in cash at home from police with a court order, or smuggle them through the customs. With bitcoin no problem at all. They cannot even confiscate them because what they confiscate is encrypted and worthless to them. And you can use one of the many security copies which have survived the raid, say, one of those stored in the cloud.

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15. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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So... uhm ...what is there to say...
Bitcoin takes a plunge as does the Stock market...
fairy floss is after all just that ... fairy floss, wilting in the sun of reality.... (poetic license PL1289-99)

16. ### someguy1Registered Senior Member

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I'm quite puzzled the past few days as to why the stock market and bitcoin go up and down at the same time. You'd think people would abandon one for the other. That was actually a theory I read a while back, that people would take money out of stocks and buy bitcoin. (This was during the upward frenzy in December, when the True Believers thought that bitcoin was about to crush the banks. LOL).

But I confess I don't understand why bitcoin and stocks seem to be correlated lately. If you think Fed tightening is going to crash the stock market, you should be selling stocks and buying cryptos. But that's not happening. Perhaps cryptos and stocks both respond to perceived Fed tightening.

17. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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I tend to think that it is due to a generally high state of "collective mass investor hysteria" that has been present for some months now. Trying to demonstrate optimism when so many things give cause for pessimism. A part of the " end times " paranoia sweeping the world for the last 10 years or so.

BTW. The negative impacts of the Trump tax reforms have yet to be fully realized and may be playing a big part in the recent sell off.

As we are seeing reality eventually bites. I think the markets will settle down eventually to a more realistic level now the Trump effect is starting to wear off.

Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
18. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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People WANT to believe in Trumps rhetoric.
Also it is worth noting the market correction was preceded by the collapse of Bitcoin. If I am not mistaken.

Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
19. ### SchmelzerValued Senior Member

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I also think the bitcoin crash is independent of the actual crash on the stock market. The bitcoin collapse seems to be caused by what the Chinese are doing to prevent the use of bitcoin to smuggle money out of China.

The stock market has been a bubble already for a long time, overvalued for the simple reason that the super riches have a lot of money for cheap so that they buy anything they can own. This is how inflation works - you give newly printed money to a group of people. This leads to inflation, but not of everything in the same way, but first for what this particular group prefers to buy. And they continue to buy it even if it does not give them profit - owning shares gives also power. For the superrich, the bubble is not that problematic. He got the money for cheap and has bought for this power, and the power will remain even after the crash (as long as he does not have to sell it when it is cheap - it is more probable that he can buy even more).

20. ### iceauraValued Senior Member

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Most drug cartel money is laundered through First World banks large enough to fold it into their regular business. Are any of them handling bitcoin in sufficient volume?

21. ### SarkusHippomonstrosesquippedalo phobeValued Senior Member

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Stock market has been on the high side for a while and the recent slump is really just a correction, possibly sharpened by the proliferation of algorithmic high-frequency trading. It was possibly brought on by increased fears over imminent rate rises.

Bitcoin, on the other hand, has its own issues to contend with recently, with governments and banks all doing what they can to put the genie back in the bottle, or at least build a wall around it so that its influence doesn't damage their power too much. The meteoric rise pre new year was never going to last in the short term and a correction was pretty much a given, although the scale was somewhat larger than normal - but really not that much larger. Bitcoin has gone through a number of such corrections in the past, of c.30-50% or more, after relatively rapid increases.

It is still fluctuating 10-20% a day (up 12% over the past 13 hours or so) and it will undoubtedly continue to be highly volatile. But if you time it right, there are some very good short term gains to be had... and I honestly think the underlying price will trend upward, at least until some catastrophic news/legislation brings the grand experiment to a halt.

Yes, those that bought high will have to hold on to their coins for a while or crystallise their losses, but that's the nature of speculation.

22. ### exchemistValued Senior Member

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Seems to me the only way is down, long term. These virtual currencies are going to get frozen out.

23. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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Pure gambling... next thing they will produce a slot machine ( pokie ) called Bitcoin... hee hee