Is 2018 off to a hot start or what? Three days into the new year we’ve added $100 billion to the crypto market cap, shuffled the top 10 list, and birthed new millionaires. Hours ago we cracked the $750 billion threshold, and record trading volume has pushed dozens of coins to asinine valuations. If this doesn’t foreshadow a legendary year to come, I don’t know what does.
All is not sunshine and rainbows, however. Euphoria has driven unmanageable trading volumes across all exchanges, and they have begun to show obvious weakness. Most if not all major exchanges are experiencing crashes, ‘upgrades,’ or ‘minor service outages.’ Until an hour ago we were witnessing perhaps the most volatile moment of trading in history, but at present that’s come to a screeching hault. Discords, live streams, and chat rooms have moved from confusion to frustration as traders are forced to fight their insatiable desire to capitalize on the explosive activity.
Very few exchanges are left unmarred by these events.
Binance is down, undergoing maintenance. They released a statement saying to expect 30 minute downtime, but recently extended that window.
Coinbase has deactivated transfers and notified users of expected delays.
Bittrex has frozen every wallet.
Bitfinex is experiencing a ‘minor service outage,’ and many other exchanges are down entirely. If you were wondering if the problem was exclusive to you or your computer, rest assured the trouble is globally felt.
Centralization of exchanges has long been dreaded by the crypto community, and the current situation only serves to exacerbate that fear. Many believe centralized exchanges are how Bitcoin and other digital currencies could ultimately be controlled and throttled, and it appears those fears may have some basis. We need decentralized exchanges to gain traction with haste. Decentralized alternatives include Bitshares, Etherdelta, and Counterparty. If you haven’t already looked into them, now is an opportune time.
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