Bitcoin Fell 35% in March

Matt Thalman - INO.com Contributor - ETFs - Bitcoins Price


During March, the price of Bitcoin fell just about 35%. It started the month at $10,805 and ended just below $7,000. Bitcoin’s decline in March has been massive, but what I find even more interesting is this decline has been somewhat slow and steady. In the past when Bitcoin would crash, 30%, 40%, 50% or even more, it would happen in a matter of days or even hours.

The slow decline is an indication that the Bitcoin craze or Bitcoin Bubble is likely over. When the craze hit a fever pitch following the Thanksgiving Holiday in the US, the price more than doubled in just about 25 days. The Bitcoin rally hit a peak on December 17th, 2017 when they were trading for more than $19,205 per coin. More so than that, the last time Bitcoin traded in the low $6,000 range, was before the Thanksgiving Holiday when it is believed many families sat around the dinner table and discussed the “can’t miss opportunity in cryptocurrencies.” Those discussions helped fuel 100,000 new accounts being opened that weekend and the price of Bitcoin hitting $9,000 for the first time.

The Thanksgiving dinner table conversations helped foster the “fear of missing out” trend that we saw catapult Bitcoin both into the limelight and at breathtaking prices. That fear soon faded as Bitcoin fell hard, from $19,205 to $14,500 in just five days, following it hitting its record and still all-time high. Ever since then the cryptocurrency has been on a downward trajectory.

The declining price has lessened interest from both the general public and big investors, and even now we have seen the media outlets reducing coverage on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Even Alphabet’s Google searches (Fig.1) are down dramatically since the peak. A further look at the price of Bitcoin (Fig.2) and the Google search trend of Bitcoin may tell another story. The two charts side by side look very, very similar. Continue reading "Bitcoin Fell 35% in March"

Why Rebalancing Your Portfolio Is Important

Matt Thalman - INO.com Contributor - ETFs - Rebalancing


Despite only being three months into 2018, investors have been on quite a wild ride. The market started off the year as it ended 2017, on a tear higher, then the brief crash in early February, which led to a nice calm recovery during the remainder of the month just to run into what I’m calling “Whipsaw March” with the market jumping higher and lower by more than 1% nearly every other day. Not only have the major indexes been extremely volatile, but some of 2017’s biggest winners, big technology and especially the FANG stocks have seen their prices fall more than 10% in 2018.

Big pops that reverse fortune and the big drops that follow always cause investors to wonder what they could have done to protect themselves from the decline without completely abandoning their position.

The most straightforward and most effective answer to that situation is to rebalance your portfolio. Rebalancing is when you bring the percentage of your holdings back in line with each other.

For example, if you have a portfolio made up of 10 stocks and each represents roughly 10% of your portfolio, you would have a ‘balanced portfolio.’ Now if one of your stocks outperformed the others and ended up representing say 25% of your portfolio, instead of just 10%, then you would rebalance by selling some of your shares in that company until it represented 10% of your total portfolio. Continue reading "Why Rebalancing Your Portfolio Is Important"

The Ultimate Buzz Word ETF

Matt Thalman - INO.com Contributor - ETFs - Buzz Word ETF


On January 30th the team at Exchange Traded Concepts, an Exchange Traded Fund issuer, released the "Ultimate Buzz Word" ETF, the Innovation Shares NextGen Protocol ETF (KOIN). Alright, I’ll admit, the name may not be loaded with buzz words. But the fund’s concept is loaded with recently popular buzz words such as “Blockchain” and “Artificial Intelligence.”

The KOIN ETF is a fund that tracks an index that uses artificial intelligence to pick global stocks which have current or future interests in blockchain technology. On the surface, this ETF just feels like someone trying to take advantage of today’s hot investing buzz words.

Even after Bitcoin rose from under $1,000 to above $19,000 in less than a year, most retail investors didn’t fully understand what blockchain technology was. But they knew that while a lot of big-name investors and economist were skeptical of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies’, the one thing most people would agree on was that blockchain technology was great. Continue reading "The Ultimate Buzz Word ETF"

No Bitcoin ETF Yet, But There Are Blockchain ETFs

Matt Thalman - INO.com Contributor - Blockchain ETFs


While the Securities and Exchange Commission has yet to approve an actual Bitcoin ETF, it is allowing investors to buy shares of ETF’s which are focused on the technology which makes cryptocurrencies tick, the blockchain.

After the explosion of Bitcoin back in the fall when the price of one coin jumped from around $4,000 to over $19,000, a number of different companies began clamoring to get involved in cryptocurrencies directly or just in the blockchain technology, and that is where these Exchange Traded Funds are focused. The thinking is that while you may not want to invest directly in a cryptocurrency, you may still want exposure to it through the businesses that help it operate.

For example, you could buy Square Inc. (SQ), the payment processing company that a few weeks ago announced it would now allow customers to pay with Bitcoin. Or perhaps it is through a less direct method of buying shares of NVIDIA (NVDA), the semiconductor company, which produces the microprocessors that are needed to make cryptocurrencies a reality. Or lastly, perhaps it just a previous beverage company, Long Island Iced Tea Corp. that now wants to get into blockchain and changes its name out of the blue to Long Blockchain Corp. (LBCC).

The first blockchain ETF to hit the market was Continue reading "No Bitcoin ETF Yet, But There Are Blockchain ETFs"

A Few Marijuana ETFs For U.S. Investors

Matt Thalman - INO.com Contributor - Marijuana ETFs


The marijuana industry is taking North America by storm, well maybe that happened back in the 60’s, but now the legal marijuana industry is doing it today. Despite the fact that the U.S. Federal Government still considers marijuana a Schedule I substance and therefore illegal, it appears the “pot” movement is taking hold as 29 U.S. States have already legalized the use of medical marijuana and another eight have legalized marijuana for recreational use.

This movement has drawn the attention of everyday investors and those on Wall Street. Over the past few years, we have seen an explosion of small, risky, marijuana investments pop up. The sheer number of options has been overwhelming and very risky for average investors to get involved with, but that is all changing very quickly.

In the spring of 2017 the first marijuana ETF, Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index ETF (HMMJ), debuted. This was investors first chance to buy into the industry without taking on ‘single-stock’ risk in a very fragmented and risky industry.

The big issue though with HMMJ is that it is a Canadian ETF and thus it trades on the Toronto Stock exchange. That means for U.S. based investors it was either difficult, as in their online broker wouldn’t allow them to buy the investment, or very expensive, as in $60 per transaction (that is $60 trading commission to buy and $60 to sell it). Continue reading "A Few Marijuana ETFs For U.S. Investors"