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Study Finds That 22 Percent Of Bitcoin Investors Are Using Debt To Fund Their Investments

 

Investing in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ripple, Ethereum and Litecoin is extremely risky, and experts all over the country are warning that people should only invest what they are willing to lose.  Unfortunately, many are getting swept up in the current euphoria surrounding cryptocurrencies and are not listening to that very sound advice.  A disturbing new survey that was just released found that 22 percent of all Bitcoin investors are either directly or indirectly investing in Bitcoin with borrowed money…

According to LendEDU, a personal loan research firm, more than 18 percent of Bitcoin investors have used borrowed money to trade the cryptocurrency. In a global survey of 672 active Bitcoin investors, researchers asked traders the method they used to fund their cryptocurrency trading accounts. The majority of investors used banking systems such as credit cards and ACH transfers to fund their accounts.

But 22 percent of traders revealed that they have not paid off their credit and debit cards after purchasing Bitcoin, effectively investing in the cryptocurrency with borrowed money.

Credit card debt is one of the most toxic forms of debt that you could ever carry, and investing in anything when you still have credit card balances is extremely unwise.

Yes, cryptocurrencies went on an epic run in 2017, but there is absolutely no guarantee that they will continue to rise in 2018.

In fact, there is a very real possibility that we could see a cryptocurrency crash, and there are many investors that are actually eagerly anticipating one

Well, as many traders expected, it appears that institutions are using the futures product to slowly but surely build a short position in bitcoin. According to the CFTC Commitment of Traders report (available CBOE futures), non-commercial traders held a net short position of around $30mn as of Tuesday Dec 26, or around half of the total open interest.

Separately, the Traders in Financial Futures breakdown provided by the CFTC show that the leveraged funds category that consists largely of hedge funds and various money managers had a short of around $14mn, or around a quarter of the total open interest.

In other words, spec investors have used the futures contracts to establish Bitcoin shorts.

On the other hand, there is also the possibility that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin could continue to defy gravity and soar even higher over the next 12 months.

In fact, a rumor that Amazon.com will soon start accepting Bitcoin has lots of people buzzing

As a backdrop to all of this, there is a strong rumor that Amazon is about to accept Bitcoin as a method of payment. Patrick Byrne, the CEO of Overstock, has stated that Amazon will soon have no choice but to start accepting it. He is quoted as saying, “… they have to follow suit. I’ll be stunned if they don’t because they can’t just cede that part of the market to us if we are the only main large retail site taking Bitcoin.” Scott Mullins, an Amazon executive has confirmed that Amazon is, “working with financial institutions and crypto-experts to spur innovation, and facilitate frictionless experimentation.”

If the Amazon rumor turns out to be true – Bitcoin will probably go into orbit! Be prepared…

If someone knew exactly what would happen throughout 2018, that individual could make an absolutely obscene amount of money.

Unfortunately I don’t know where cryptocurrencies are heading, but it does appear that things are about to get a whole lot more interesting.  According to Reuters, it looks like you will soon be able to invest in Bitcoin using leveraged ETFs…

The new idea is to build “leveraged” and “inverse” funds that would rise – or fall – twice as fast as the price of bitcoin on a given day.

Direxion Asset Management LLC plans to list such products on Intercontinental Exchange Inc’s NYSE Arca exchange if U.S. securities regulators give the nod, according to a filing by the exchange this week.

In the filing, the exchange said the listing “will enhance competition among market participants, to the benefit of investors and the marketplace.”

So if Bitcoin rises or falls a thousand dollars in a single day, those financial instruments will be designed to move by about twice as much.

That should be fun.

Meanwhile, some are asking what will happen to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ripple, Ethereum and Litecoin if the long-awaited collapse of global financial markets finally happens this year.

Well, some believe that it would be doom for cryptocurrencies, but others believe that cryptocurrencies would be like gold and would actually do extremely well during the next great financial crisis…

The question is what will happen to Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies once the financial collapse takes place. The signs are that when economic circumstances start to deteriorate the price of Bitcoin rises. A prime example of this is during the Cyprus and Greece bailout which saw the price of BTC rise considerably during this period. With banks stopping access to cash in ATM machines, Bitcoin was the perfect solution to be able to store it safely out of the banks and Governments’ hands.

What also happens during a depression is interest rates skyrocket and start to see hyperinflation. This will mean it is extremely hard to get finance from banks and the cost can make it unsustainable. The ICO market is a perfect solution to this problem and as the banking sector suffers, ICOs will boom. More companies will look to these as a cheap way to raise money and will create their own cryptocurrency.

It will be fascinating to see how all of this plays out.

There are some financial experts that believe that Bitcoin is going to zero, and there are others that are absolutely convinced that it is going to a million dollars.

As with so many things in life, timing is everything.  If you are investing in Bitcoin, let us just hope that you got in at the right time and that you will also get out at the right time.

Michael Snyder is a pro-Trump candidate for Congress in Idaho’s First Congressional District, and you can learn how you can get involved in the campaign on his official website. His new book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.

 

Is Ripple The Next Hot Cryptocurrency? Some Are Calling It ‘The Bitcoin That Banks Like’

After Bitcoin, can you name the second largest cryptocurrency?  Until recently it was Ethereum, but now it is Ripple.  At the start of last year, Ripple was trading for less than a penny, and even just a few months ago you could still get Ripple for about 20 cents.  But now the price of Ripple has absolutely exploded, and as I write this article it is sitting at $3.15.  At this point Ripple has a market cap of more than 120 billion dollars, and those that got in when Ripple was under a penny have seen their investments go up by more than 40,000 percent.

If you can believe it, the price of Ripple is up more than 1,000 percent in the last 30 days alone.  So why is Ripple doing so well right now?

Well, many analysts are pointing to the very strong relationships that Ripple has been building with financial institutions

XRP’s price has benefited significantly from Ripple’s new partnerships with banks, noted Chris Keshian, co-founder of the Apex Token Fund, a tokenized crypto fund-of-funds.

He added that as XRP “surpassed ETH as the second largest cryptocurrency, market hype continued to drive the price.”

There are some that believe that Ripple will eventually surpass Bitcoin simply because it is a better way to send and receive money.

And without a doubt, functionality is the key for the long-term survival of any cryptocurrency.  Speculative investment can take a cryptocurrency a long way, but at the end of the day it needs to function well in the real world, and that is one key advantage that Ripple appears to have.  According to the Express, Ripple is being called “the Bitcoin that banks like”…

Bitcoin is feeling the pressure from another cryptocurrency hot on it’s heels.

Ripple has attracted tens of millions of dollars worth of investment leading to it being dubbed the Bitcoin that banks like.

The company uses block chain technology, powered by its own cryptocurrency, to send money across the world in real time settlements, according to the company’s CEO Brad Garlinghouse.

It does not hold the level of anonymity that bitcoin does, which makes the currency more favourable to banks.

One thing that has been holding back the price of Ripple is the fact that it is not listed on some of the key exchanges.  But there are persistent rumors that Ripple will be listed on Coinbase very soon, and that could potentially drive the price of Ripple much higher.

Before you get too excited, let me share a word of caution.  Investing in cryptocurrencies is extremely risky, because they are purely digital creations that do not actually possess any intrinsic value at all.  Right now there are more than 1,000 cryptocurrencies in existence, and most of them are eventually going to zero.

But for the moment, those that were able to capitalize on the cryptocurrency trend in a major way have become incredibly wealthy.  Ripple’s co-founder Chris Larsen is now worth an astounding 37 billion dollars, and that makes him the 15th richest person in America.

Of course he doesn’t actually have 37 billion dollars.  If he does not sell his coins and Ripple eventually goes back to zero, all of that “paper wealth” will be gone.

The big danger is that global governments will start cracking down on cryptocurrencies in a major way, and in late December we did see South Korea impose restrictions on the trading of cryptocurrencies in order to “limit speculation”.  If more governments start piling on, that could absolutely crush the cryptocurrency bubble.

For now, Bitcoin has been rebounding from that announcement, and Ripple just continues to roar higher.  But let us not forget that a single big announcement could change all of that in a single moment

The South Korean Government’s threats of shutting down exchanges seemed to have little influence on Ripple at the end of the year, but with news hitting the wires of just how much of an impact South Korean exchanges had on Ripple’s December rally and it’s not surprising that Ripple has been defending its gains at the start of the year.

Bitcoin may have been the fallout guy when it came to the regulatory chatter at the end of the year, but if the exchanges are closed, it’s not just Bitcoin that will suffer and, if the reports are correct of the South Koreans driving up Ripple trading volumes, things could get messy very quickly.

Whatever happens in the short-term, it appears that Ripple has a real chance to be a long-term solution for global payments.  In a recent statement, the Ripple team noted that using Ripple is faster, cheaper and more efficient than using Bitcoin…

In a year punctuated by the dramatic rise of digital assets, XRP has out performed the entire sector and looks likely to end the year up more than 45,000%. XRP’s performance is driven by a keen focus on solving a real global payments problem for real customers – and at fractions of a penny and about 3 seconds per transaction – it is cheaper, faster and more efficient than BTC or ETH. As others have pointed out, Bitcoin isn’t going to solve a payments problem when a transaction costs $40 and takes hours to complete.

The market seems to increasingly understand that there’s real utility for XRP in solving a massive cross-border payments and liquidity problem that is measured in the trillions of dollars.

It is that sort of utility that could make Ripple a long-term success.

But of course new competitors are coming online with each passing day.  The “Facebook of cryptocurrencies” may not have even been invented yet, and this industry is evolving at an absolutely breathtaking pace.

So Ripple may be the hottest cryptocurrency for the moment, but that could change completely by next week.

Nobody knows exactly what is going to happen next, and that is what makes the cryptocurrency market so exciting.  Fortunes will be won and lost in the blink of an eye, and there will be some very big winners and some very big losers.

Michael Snyder is a pro-Trump candidate for Congress in Idaho’s First Congressional District, and you can learn how you can get involved in the campaign on his official website. His new book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.

44 Numbers From 2017 That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe

2017 went by way too quickly.  Donald Trump’s first year in the White House shook up the entire planet, and nobody is quite sure what is going to happen next.  Personally, as 2017 began I was still having a hard time actually believing that Trump was going to be our president.  Once he was finally inaugurated on January 20th I was able to relax a little bit, but at that point I had no idea that I would soon be running for Congress here in Idaho as a pro-Trump candidate.  As 2018 begins, I think that it would be good to look back and remember some of the most important things that happened over the past 12 months.  The following are 44 numbers from 2017 that are almost too crazy to believe…

#1 During Donald Trump’s first year, ISIS lost 98 percent of the territory that it gained while Barack Obama was in the White House.

#2 The price of Bitcoin rose more than 1,300% during 2017.

#3 According to the Washington Post, one out of every ten young adults in the United States has been homeless at some point over the past year.

#4 The United States has lost more than 70,000 manufacturing facilities since China joined the WTO in 2001.

#5 On Donald Trump’s first full day in office he was 70 years, 7 months and 7 days old, and it happened in year 5777 on the Hebrew calendar.

#6 The all-time record for the number of retail store closings in the U.S. was absolutely shattered in 2017.  According to the latest figures, a total of 6,985 store locations were shut down last year, and we are expected to break the record again in 2018.

#7 Incredibly, the number of retail store closings in 2017 was up 229 percent compared with 2016.

#8 When Ronald Reagan entered the White House, the federal government was about one trillion dollars in debt.  Now we are 20 trillion dollars in debt with no end in sight.

#9 Prominent names in the financial world such as John McAfee and James Altucher are predicting that the price of Bitcoin will eventually reach one million dollars.

#10 According to the most recent numbers that we have, 41 million Americans are currently living in poverty.

#11 A recent CNN poll found that only 37 percent of Americans have a favorable view of the Democratic Party.

#12 Ever since the beginning of April, Congress has had an average approval rating of less than 20 percent.

#13 The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up more than 5,000 points in 2017, and that absolutely shattered the previous record of 3,472 points in 2013.

#14 At one point in 2017, the total market cap for all cryptocurrencies combined (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin, etc.) surpassed the half a trillion dollar mark.

#15 Wildfires burned an astounding 9,791,062 acres over the past year.

#16 It is being reported that less than 50 percent of all third, fourth and fifth grade students in the state of California meet minimum standards for literacy.

#17 At one very poorly performing elementary school in California, 96 percent of the students are not proficient in either English or math.

#18 Back in 1960, an average of $146 was spent on healthcare per person for the entire year, but today that number has skyrocketed to $9,990.

#19 Thanks to Obamacare, an appendectomy is ten times more expensive in the United States than it is in Mexico.

#20 Thanks to Obamacare, a family of four in Virginia is now facing the prospect of paying $3,000 a month for health insurance.

#21 It is being projected that the average rate increase for Obamacare plans will be 37 percent in 2018.

#22 In 2017, we found out that 264 cases of sexual harassment involving members of Congress have been settled for a grand total of $17,250,854 since the start of 1997.

#23 Economic growth is starting to pick up under President Trump, but the U.S. economy only grew at an average rate of just 1.33 percent over the 10 years prior to 2017.

#24 It is being reported that homelessness has become so pervasive in ultra-liberal Seattle that “400 unauthorized tent camps” have popped up around the city.

#25 One survey that was conducted in 2017 discovered that 78 percent of all full-time workers in the United States live paycheck to paycheck at least part of the time.

#26 According to the Federal Reserve, the average U.S. household is now $137,063 in debt, and that figure is more than double the median household income.

#27 A staggering 59.8 percent of younger Millennials (18 to 25) are now living with relatives, and overall an all-time record 38.4 percent of all Millennials are currently living with family.

#28 Boston University professor Larry Kotlikoff says that the federal government is facing a fiscal gap of 210 trillion dollars over the next 75 years.

#29 According the National Center For Health Statistics, nearly 40 percent of all U.S. adults are now officially obese. That is an all-time record.

#30 Our obesity epidemic is now costing us 190 billion dollars a year.

#31 Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com, and Warren Buffett now have more money than the poorest 50 percent of the U.S. population combined.

#32 At this point, 20 percent of all U.S. households have “either zero or negative wealth”.

#33 U.S. stocks have have increased in value by more than 5 trillion dollars since Donald Trump was elected.

#34 For the season, NFL television ratings were down about 9 percent, and many believe that the anthem protests were the primary cause for the ratings decline.

#35 One very disturbing survey found that less than one out of every four Republican members of Congress support building Trump’s border wall.  This is just one reason why we need to vote out the RINOs and replace them with pro-Trump candidates that will support President Trump’s agenda.

#36 Another survey discovered that 50 percent of all Americans favor a pre-emptive strike on North Korea even though many of them cannot even find North Korea on a map of the world.

#37 Last year criminals were able to hack into Equifax and make off with the credit information of 143 million Americans.

#38 Venezuela, the 11th largest oil producing country in the entire world, decided to stop using the petrodollar in 2017.  This was one of the biggest news stories of the entire year, and yet the mainstream media in the U.S. didn’t want to talk about it.

#39 It has been reported that only 25 percent of all Americans have more than $10,000 in savings right now.

#40 A study conducted by the Federal Reserve found that 44 percent of all U.S. adults do not even have enough money “to cover an unexpected $400 expense”.

#41 In the early 1970s, 70 percent of all men in the United States from the age of 20 to the age of 39 were married, but today that number has fallen to just 35 percent. Instead of getting married and starting families, a lot of our young men are still living at home with their parents. Today, 35 percent of all young men from the age of 21 to the age of 30 “are living at home with their parents or a close relative”.

#42 In 2017, the federal government spent more than 4 trillion dollars for the first time ever.

#43 Our government continues to waste money in some of the most insane ways imaginable. For example, in 2017 we learned that the U.S. military actually spends 42 million dollars a year on Viagra.

#44 One survey discovered that 40 percent of all Americans now “prefer socialism to capitalism”, and so we have much work to do if we intend to have any chance of turning this country around.

Michael Snyder is a pro-Trump candidate for Congress in Idaho’s First Congressional District, and you can learn how you can get involved in the campaign on his official website. His new book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.

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