By Carlo Versano
There’s a civil war underway in cryptocurrency ー and it’s shaking investor confidence in the very foundation of the blockchain.
Bitcoin, down 25 percent in a week and over 75 percent since its highs of a year ago, is suffering at least in part from the latest “hard fork” split of the two versions of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) into ABC and SV ー which themselves are just second-rate copies of the original Bitcoin currency, according to Merlin Rothfeld, a crypto investor and strategist with the Online Trading Academy.
Rothfeld predicted the volatility in Bitcoin will be a good thing in the long term, as it “shakes out” the vulnerabilities in the relationship between crypto and blockchain.
All of the things that have consistently appealed to Bitcoin investors ー the decentralization, transparency, chain of record ー are still intact, Rothfeld said. “That’s very appealing to have this kind of autonomy.”
Some investors worry that miners are mining “empty blocks” that would modify, and thus interfere with, the older version of the blockchain of a specific currency ー and that shakes the confidence of the entire market that relies on “proof of work” algorithms to record transactions, according to Rothfeld.
Once investors better understand how those vulnerabilities are being exploited, they can be patched, Rothfeld said. But until then, we should expect the volatility to continue and Bitcoin demand to wane. “I don’t see it stopping anytime soon,” he said.
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