Bitcoin is a financial sensation again – but not for the meteoric rises in the price of the cryptocurrency seen last year, but for all the wrong reasons.
Bitcoin values are floating at around $6,141 after a decline that started in January and has continued since despite some brief rallies.
For Bitcoin, that is the lowest price in 2018 and is prompting the question of if the cryptocurrency can ever recover.
The dollar price is also the lowest since $5,878 on November 12, when the surge to the digital currency’s peak price of $19,345 was reached on December 16.
The whisper around the markets is Bitcoin maybe has had its day and the time is right for newer, leaner blockchain technologies to step into the limelight.
This opinion is backed by two cryptocurrency developments.
Facebook crypto U-turn
First Facebook has reversed a six-month moratorium banning cryptocurrency advertising.
All such advertising was banned by the social media network at the start of the year – while Google and Twitter have followed suit.
The corporation announced the ban on “financial products and services frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices.”
The net was spread to cover cryptocurrencies, binary options and initial coin offerings (ICOs).
Now, advertisers can make a formal application to Facebook for promoting digital currency products and services. Binary options and ICOs remain blocked.
The application process will include proving to Facebook that a crypto business is safe and secure for consumers. Advertisers must also show that they have official licences and a public stock exchange listing.
The aim is to stop rogue advertisers scamming Facebook users.
Cash for blockchain start-ups
Meanwhile, US venture capitalists Andreessen Horowitz is setting up a $300 million investment fund to back start-up cryptocurrency businesses.
Partner Chris Dixon said: “Although the Bitcoin whitepaper is now almost 10 years old, we believe we are still early in the crypto movement.
He added: “We are long-term, patient investors. We’ve been investing in crypto assets for more than five years. We’ve never sold any of those investments, and don’t plan to any time soon. If there is another crypto winter, we’ll keep investing aggressively.”
The partnership has already benefitted from a $25 million stake in Coinbase, one of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges, made in 2013.