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Asian Market Update – Thursday: Bitcoin cash tumbles as other coins gain; Asian stocks mixed

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The Big Question: What’s happening to the price of bitcoin cash on GDAX?

The biggest news in the world of crypto today is the surge in bitcoin cash, which has been overshadowed by bitcoin since the showdown between the two in early November. Wednesday morning in Hong Kong, bitcoin cash was up more than 20 percent to all fresh all-time high on Bitfinex, while prices of other major cryptocurrencies stumbled.

At midday, bitcoin cash was still up 15 percent for the day to $3,212 on Bitfinex. The virtual currency surged more than 60 percent to an all-time high of $3,676 before falling about 20 percent later.

The surge in bitcoin cash price on Wednesday came after Coinbase and their GDAX exchange, announced on Tuesday that traders could buy and sell bitcoin cash on its platform. The price of bitcoin cash on GDAX then spiked to almost insane levels shortly after it was added, far above the market price on other exchanges. GDAX then halted all trading in the virtual currency after only 4 minutes of trading, with the last recorded transaction coming in at $9,500.

For the other main cryptocurrencies, things did not look so good Wednesday morning.

Litecoin saw the biggest loss on Wednesday morning, trading down by 5.06 percent to $332 on Conbase. Litecoin is now down for the second straight day after losing about 2.7 percent on Tuesday.

Bitcoin also took big hit on Wednesday morning, losing bout 4 percent to $17,000 as of midday and extending a three-day losing streak. Since Sunday, bitcoin has tumbled about 12.8 percent.

Ethereum was also down by almost 4 percent to $796 at midday after four positive days in a row. Prior to Wednesday morning’s loss, ethereum was up nearly 20 percent since the weekend.

Main Market Movers – Mid-day Asian Trading Session

Indexes Value at Midday Daily Change
Japan- Nikkei 225 22,853 -0.06%
China-Shanghai Composite Index 3,296 0.01%
Hong Kong –Hang Seng 29,252 0.04%
South Korea-KOSPI 2,478 -0.13%
Australia-ASX 200 6,072 0.01%
S&P 500 E-Mini Futures 2,690 0.20%

Asian equities were muted on Wednesday morning, as investors closely watched developments in the US Congress on one of the largest tax code overhauls in US history.

As of midday Wednesday, equities on the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Australia were marginally higher, while stocks in Japan and South Korea were down slightly.

On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index edged up 0.01 percent at midday to 3,296. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index moved up 0.04 percent to 29,252 at midday.

Down under, the ASX 200 was 0.01 percent higher to 6,072 at midday.

The S&P 500 E-Mini Futures was up 0.20 percent to 2,690.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 Index was off a slight 0.06 percent to 22,853 at midday.

In South Korea, the Kospi was down 0.13 percent to 2,478 at midday.

Investors in Asia Pacific and across the globe are keeping their eyes on the US Congress for a sweeping tax reform bill that have boosted stocks to all-time highs this year. The House Representatives passed the bill on Tuesday afternoon, but it still needs another vote. So far, the market’s expectation is that Congress will pass the bill and have it signed by Trump before Christmas.

Currencies

The Japanese yen was down 0.05 percent against the US dollar at midday Wednesday, changing hands at 112.94 per dollar.

The Chinese yuan firmed 0.10 percent against the US dollar at 6.6969 per dollar.

The Australian dollar was also down 0.02 percent on the dollar, changing hands at 1.3052 per dollar at midday.

Commodities

WTI Oil was up 0.14 percent to $57.72 per barrel at midday on Wednesday.

Brent Crude edged up 0.13 percent to $63.89 per barrel.

Gold gained 0.20 percent to $1,263 an ounce.

News across Asia

In China, concerns have been raised that the country’s largest e-commerce giant could form a monopoly in both online and offline consumer markets. The trigger is that Alibaba and Tencent have acquired new e-commerce companies and invested heavily in a wide range of other sectors including physical stores, insurance, auto and so on.

Take away: So far Chinese regulators have been mum on M&A deals involving these e-commerce giants, but with increasing worries over anti-trust issues, things could turn for them.

In South Korea, travel agencies there have renewed their protest that the Chinese government has banned travel groups to visit South Korea because of political tensions between China and South Korea. Bilateral ties soured last year after South Korea allowed the US to deploy the THAAD missile defense system.

Take away: Chances are these restrictions will be removed sooner rather than later, as China has conceded on the THAAD issue and reluctantly accepted that the THAAD system will not go away anytime soon, given the current tensions on the peninsula.

Featured image from Pixabay.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, ethereum and litecoin. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term trading.



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