May 20, 2021, 9:54 am

How Cryptocurrencies Actually Work, Explained

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Make Money Online

On December 17th, 2017, Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency, attained its highest price, reaching incredibly close to $20,000. While there was no way of predicting such a high value for this cryptocurrency, market trends pointed towards inevitable growth, especially since the Fall of 2017. See, from this time on, Bitcoin’s price rose and rose, reaching $5,000 in October, $10,000 in November, before eclipsing at nearly $20,000 in December. 

Bitcoin’s high price attracted global attention, and no media houses were left behind when it came to covering this wonder currency. However, what really shone the spotlight on Bitcoin were the millionaires who emerged quite from nowhere, thanks to savvy investments in the cryptocurrency. 

In light of these developments, interests in Bitcoin were piqued. Suddenly, people wanted to learn about Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. And thanks to the consistently high prices of these currencies, people still want to know about them to date. 

So, if you are one of the interested learners, this post is for you. By the end of this article, you will learn what cryptocurrency is and how it works. Let’s get you informed, shall we?

What Is a Cryptocurrency?

A cryptocurrency is a digital/ virtual asset that is used as a medium of exchange. It is secured by strong cryptography to ensure that financial transactions are safeguarded, eliminating cases of counterfeiting or double-spending. Excellent cryptography is also used to manage the making of new units and approve transactions. 

According to Forbes, cryptocurrencies utilize decentralized controls based on blockchain technology. But even with all this said, the standout feature of cryptocurrencies is that they are seldom availed by central authorities, case in point banks, and other financial establishments. For this reason, they are free of government meddling. 

Bitcoin, availed as an open-source software back in 2009, is widely considered to be the pioneer of cryptocurrencies. Today, it is the most popular and most valuable amid over six thousand altcoins (other variations of Bitcoin, or new cryptocurrencies.) As of November 2019, over eighteen million Bitcoins were circulating in the world, and their value equals a whooping USD 146 bn. 

As people continue to embrace cryptocurrencies, more of them have since emerged. Examples include Ripple, Ethereum, Stellar, Monero, Dash, Zcash, Vertcoin, Verge, and Titcoin. As of 2019, the cumulative market capitalization of cryptocurrencies was USD 237.1 bn.

How Cryptocurrencies Work

To know how cryptocurrencies work, it is necessary to learn a few key concepts. These are:

  • Public ledgers: All approved transactions since the creation of a cryptocurrency are recorded in a public ledger. Note, the names of the coin owners are encrypted, and other cryptographic mechanisms are used to ensure the integrity of record keeping.
  • Transactions: When it comes to cryptocurrencies, transactions occur when the transfer of coins between two digital wallets is completed. 
  • Mining: According to Investopedia, the mining process is responsible for giving value to the coins and is known as a proof-of-work system. It entails solving an increasingly complicated puzzle, confirming transactions, and appending the blocks into a blockchain. 
  • Pseudonymity: It is yet another essential thing to note when it comes to how cryptocurrencies work. Unlike in a cash system, the identity of a coin holder is kept in an encrypted address that is not connected to their name or any other identifying information. Therefore, the relationship that you have with your digital assets is pseudonymous rather than anonymous since the public can access the ledgers.

Examples of Where Crypto Is Used

After acquiring a cryptocurrency, there will come a time for you to spend it. But where exactly can you use it to pay for a service or product? Below are examples of instances when cryptocurrencies can be used. 

Online Casinos

Long gone are the days when you had to go to a physical casino to play poker, roulette, keno, or baccarat. See, thanks to technology, more specifically the internet, you can now play any casino game from the comfort of your location. And the best part of all is that you can now use cryptocurrencies on these platforms.

Ignition, an online casino established back in 2016, is one of the platforms that allow you to use cryptocurrencies, in this case, Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash. But even with that said, it helps to know that you only have to provide a Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash equivalent of the required dollar amount. With that cleared out, if you want to know more about Ignition Casino, feel free to check out this review from OnlineCasinoGems. 

Travel

The cryptocurrency world has witnessed significant growth in the past years, and the number of businesses that accept it as a form of payment has significantly increased. When it comes to travel, agents such as CheapAir and Destinia now accept Bitcoin payments for flight booking, car rentals, and even hotel reservations. 

Do you want to live in an apartment when you get to your travel destination? CryptoCribs can come in handy in this regard if you happen to have Bitcoin or Ethereum in your digital wallet. 

Food Delivery

The next time you are hungry, be sure to use your cryptocurrency to order your favorite meal. According to bitcoin.com, you get the opportunity to order any meal from pizzerias within your locale. The best thing of all is that you can use any coin from among the fifty accepted. 

Noble Causes

Believe it or not, you can now help your favorite organization when it comes to running various initiatives. Today, the Red Cross, WikiLeaks, and Save the Children are but some of the several organizations that accept cryptocurrency donations. 

Final Thoughts

Now that you know how cryptocurrencies work and where you can use them, it is time to think about investing in this opportunity. We can count on significant returns, given that people are always out to embrace secure technologies in a bid to counter cases of fraud and hacking. But even with all said, remember, wherever there’s a potential for high returns, it always helps to be extra keen.

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May 18, 2021, 9:12 am

Gemini vs Coinbase: What Should Crypto Traders Use?

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Make Money Online

Trading crypto as a pastime and even as a profession has been growing for some time now. In the last year, the industry has grown even faster than usual thanks to the economic and lifestyle changes caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic. These days, you can quickly find more than  500 places to buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrency.

With that many options, how can traders possibly figure out which exchange is the best one for them to use? There are several ways to narrow your options. First and foremost, you need to figure out which exchanges are available in your locale. Then you will want to look at such factors as user experience, offerings, fees, and security the platform offers.

Looking at these aspects of different exchanges, U.S. traders get a much more manageable list of realistic options. Among those options, Coinbase and Gemini reside close to the top of the list. Here we will give a basic overview of the important differences between Coinbase and Gemini to help you figure out which one crypto traders should use.

Image by Icons8_team from Pixabay

A Brief History of Coinbase

Coinbase Global, Inc. is the parent company for two different crypto trading platforms; Coinbase and Coinbase Pro. The original platform was founded in 2021 by cofounder Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam who came from Airbnb and Goldman Sachs respectively. The idea was to create a way for people to use bank transfers to buy Bitcoin.

Fast forward almost a decade and the company has grown to earn over $1.1 billion in yearly revenue, employ over 1,000 employees, and operate in over 100 countries. They do all this while hosting two distinct platforms that cater to a wide range of crypto traders and investors’ needs.

A Brief History of Gemini

If you’ve seen the hit David Fincher movie, The Social Network, you already know at least a little about the history of Gemini. The movies’ antagonists (or protagonists depending on how you feel about Mark Zuckerberg) are Harvard-educated, Olympic athlete twins, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. These are also the two founders of the Gemini crypto exchange.

The Winklevoss twins announced Gemini in 2013 and officially launched it in 2015.

The Big Differences Between Coinbase and Gemini

Gemini and Coinbase are two very different companies even though they are both crypto exchanges. They have very different histories and very different offerings for users. Below we will look at the major ways these two sites differ. For a helpful breakdown of Coinbase vs Gemini, Cove Markets goes into greater detail.

While significantly smaller than Coinbase, with around 100 employees, Gemini has struck some big deals through the years to facilitate this growth. The company was the first licensed exchange for both ether and Zcash. They also struck up a partnership with Samsung in 2020 to link Gemini crypto wallets to Samsung phones. 

Availability 

Coinbase is currently available in over 100 countries around the world. It is also available in most U.S. states, but not all. Hawaii, for example, does not allow residents to use Coinbase. Gemini, on the other hand, is only available in the United Kingdom, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Singapore. It is available in all 50 U.S. states as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

User Experience

Both exchanges provide a high-level trading experience to their desktop users. Coinbase and Gemini are perfect for newbie traders who want a clean, simple, and easy-to-navigate experience. Both Coinbase Pro and Gemini ActiveTrader offer advanced tools and charts experienced traders will love.

Maybe the biggest difference between the two platforms is the mobile experience. The Coinbase app is well-reviewed by users and is generally considered one of the best crypto trading apps on the market today. The Gemini app is fast but has received more mixed reviews from users who give it 3.4 stars as opposed to the 4.4-star rating of the Coinbase app.

Offerings 

Coinbase and Coinbase Pro both offer around 50 different crypto coins to buy, sell, and trade. The Pro version takes it a step further and offers almost 100 pairs to trade. The most popular pairs are BTC/USD and ETH/USD which make up about 50% of pairs trading. Gemini has about half of the coins and pairs that Coinbase offers. BTC/USD is the most popular pair on Gemini.  This one alone represents about 50% of the trading on the platform.

Fees 

The fee structure is very different when you compare Gemini and Coinbase. Coinbase uses an industry-standard tiered fee structure based on volume and whether you are a market taker or maker. Fees start at 0.5% at the lowest levels and go all the way down to 0 at the highest level of market maker volume.

On the standard Gemini site, the fees are much higher. They have a more complicated system that bases fees on not just the size of trade but how it is conducted. A transaction fee is added on top of any other fees. The result is a 1.4% to 1.99% fee depending on the trade. The Gemini ActiveTrader platform fees are similar to those of Coinbase Pro and are actually smaller in many instances. These fees range from .35% to 0 at the highest maker levels.

Security 

If these two platforms have one thing in common, it is their commitment to security. They both strive to be the safest places to trade crypto on the planet and they do a good job of meeting this goal. Both implement innovative security measures to help keep their users safe. Coinbase has a bug bounty program to encourage developers to share site security flaws.  Gemini uses multi-signature technology. This creates redundancy that makes a single-point failure less catastrophic.

Conclusion 

Both Gemini and Coinbase provide users with solid crypto trade exchanges. The fact that they both have sites for novice and experienced traders is something to like. Which one should you use? That depends on exactly what you’re looking for but if you find you prefer one over the other, you won’t be wrong.

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March 15, 2021, 10:40 am

8 Reasons to Go for a Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA)

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Career

If you would like to become a business leader or climb to the highest positions in business, you will require the right qualifications. A Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) degree gives you the right skills that are necessary to succeed at these levels. Although many DBA degrees seek to make you an expert in one area of business management and administration, these degrees also open doors and allow you to get into various leadership roles. In this article, we will look at additional reasons why you should pursue a DBA degree.

It Helps You Stand Out

With a lot more people obtaining Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) degrees, it is getting a lot harder for those with similar degrees to stand out. According to some, the market is starting to get saturated with people who have MBAs and this is why it is no longer enough to just have an MBA degree. A DBA allows you to stand out in a crowd full of people with an MBA.

Also, a DBA shows that you are willing to put in the time and work required to become a business leader. DBA holders also stand out because they have advanced skills that are crucial in positions where strategic planning and difficult decision-making is the norm.

Lastly, human resource (HR) departments will usually hire the person with the highest qualifications. By having a DBA, you naturally help your CV rise to the top.

It Lights a Fire Under You

If you are personally invested in what you are doing and motivated to get into business leadership positions, it gets easier to get into the leadership position you crave. Completing a DBA can help give you the motivation you need to succeed.

Knowing that you get to pick the exact career and positions you are interested in is also a huge motivator for a lot of people. A DBA gives them the chance to do exactly this and this is why a DBA is such a potent tool for helping people work towards the positions and career trajectories they are interested in.

It Opens Up Your Career

Earning a DBA makes you an expert in business and arms you with the skills that make it possible to pursue senior management positions. Additionally, pursuing a DBA can lead to new career opportunities in areas such as consultancy or research.

By understanding the challenges that face different industries and the skills required to craft solutions to these problems, DBA degree holders are better prepared to work in a diverse range of industries and fields including government, non-profit, business and healthcare.

If you are interested in solving problems and can generate new ideas and knowledge, there are also lots of opportunities in academia and academic research.

Higher Salary

A general rule is that the more qualifications and certifications you have, the higher the salary you can earn. With a DBA, you increase your chances of getting into higher or senior management positions which come with a higher salary.

In many companies that hire those with DBA degrees, the salaries tend to be higher than those of people with bachelor’s or master’s degrees. Also, smaller companies are starting to pay higher salaries for DBA holders. This is because they understand the value that DBA holders can provide.

Flexible Options

A major reason why a DBA is an attractive option is that you can earn the degree online if you wish. If you are pursuing a DBA, it is likely that you already have a job and other life commitments that might not allow you to take a traditional course that requires you attend multiple seminars and lectures.

Whether you are working, raising a family or running a business, completing an online DBA degree gives you the flexibility to keep your life moving while you earn the degree. Some institutions also go as far as offering DBA programs that do not require you to complete any in-person coursework, which is a huge advantage.

Professional and Personal Challenge

Earning a DBA is rigorous, challenging and oftentimes extremely difficult. Because of this, earning one challenges you both professionally and personally. Professionally, it challenges you to become a better business leader and the best in your field. Personally, it challenges you to develop the resilience and motivation required to reach a career or personal goal, no matter how challenging that might be.

It Helps You See the Big Picture

The amount of data and information being collected by businesses has grown exponentially. Business leaders are now being forced to learn more than they ever did to take advantage of this data and to have a better understanding of what is going on in the world, business or otherwise.

DBA degrees teach you how to see the big picture. Because of this, DBA holders are better able to work with data analysts and scientists to use the knowledge they get from data and the information to solve business problems, as well as find new and innovative ways to take advantage of and make use of this data.

It Improves Your Credibility

One main difference between an MBA and a DBA degree is that while the MBA is designed to have a broad scope, DBAs are meant to make holders authorities in specific areas. DBA programmes not only teach advanced research, presentation and writing skills, they also arm graduates with advanced research skills that are not taught in MBA programmes. This level of focus helps increase a graduate’s credentials. While earning an MBA might have helped propel you to a senior management position, that is no longer the case. The market is almost saturated with MBAs which means that standing out is getting difficult. Also, businesses are now looking for candidates who have kept up with the latest trends, information, technology and knowledge in the business field. Earning a DBA is a great way to not only stand out but to demonstrate that you have what it takes to hold a business leadership or senior management position.

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February 2, 2021, 9:41 am

Ways to Save Money on Heating and AC Energy Costs

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Personal Finance

If you want to reduce your energy usage, stop worrying about the light bulb hanging from the ceiling and look at the air conditioner instead. Heating and cooling your home consumes a third of the energy used by the average family. That’s why you should invest your time and effort into getting more out of your AC or heat pump. Here are a few ways to save money on heating and AC energy costs.

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Replace Your Air Filters

Odds are that your home’s air filters should have been replaced weeks or months ago. A dirty air filter is clogged. The AC has to work longer and harder to bring in the fresh air it needs. This accelerates wear and tear on the system. It also forces it to use more energy to get your home as cool as it would if you had fresh air filters in place. Note that replacing your air filters in the fall will also reduce your heating bills. You also need to clear away fallen leaves and other debris from around the air intake vents before winter comes.

Have Your AC Repaired As Soon as Issues Arise

If your air conditioner is leaking refrigerant, you may notice the unit having to work longer and harder to get your home as cool before it stops working outright. This results in increased energy consumption as great as if you had turned the thermostat down a couple of degrees. If the unit is repaired early on, you won’t have to replace the motors or add as much refrigerant. Work with a good AC repair San Antonio based firm, so that your HVAC system can be regularly maintained and quickly repaired when necessary.

Insulate

One of the best ways to save on your energy bills is to insulate your home. What can you do if your home already has thick insulation? You might want to arrange an energy audit to look for gaps in the insulation. There might be cold spots in the walls because of leaking pipes, too. You can add more insulation to your home, too. You could hang insulated drapes in the windows, reducing your heating and cooling bills. Put draft stoppers under doors. In some older homes, you might want to consider replacing the front door with a more solid, insulated one. Put another blanket on the bed before you turn up the thermostat at night. 

Find More Energy Efficient Ways to Stay Cool

How can you keep cool without turning down the thermostat and driving up your electric bills? Turn on the ceiling fans or portable fans instead. You don’t have to go for a swim, but you might feel better after taking a cold shower. Or give everyone cool drinks. Tricks like these may be what you need to get through the hottest part of the day without cranking up the AC. You may also need to eliminate heat sources that offset the cooling effect of your air conditioner. Don’t bake or take hot steaming showers when your AC is struggling to keep your home cool. Close the blinds on the side of the house being hit with the summer sun. Wait until the evening or early morning before you turn on the clothes dryer.

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January 20, 2021, 10:19 am

Problems That Many Trade Services May Have

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Trading

You can learn some very valuable things while being subscribed to different trade services, but they also come with their fair share of problems. Trading problems are nothing new and every single trader is likely to run into some sort of problem as they embark on their trading journey. You are especially prone to experience problems if you are just beginning your journey into investing; however, no one is invincible and even the most experienced investors can stumble upon issues.

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

When you hear about traders who have made a killing in the market and are practically rolling in money, you may become remorseful when you begin to run into problems and not wealth. However, even top traders have run into problems, but the way they dealt with those problems is what made them wealthy. When you enter into the market, expecting success from day one is the worst thing you could possibly do.

Remember the phrase ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’? Well, that applies to investing and trading alike. It is normal to feel disheartened when you don’t reach immediate success. However, giving up is the last thing you want to do, so don’t lose sight of your hopes or dreams.

Day trading

One problem that is coming increasingly bigger within the trading world is day trading. At first glance, day trading seems like an excellent idea, however, it can be far for that. When people have time to sit at their desk and closely monitor stock trade alerts, then great! Day trading could prove to be a great tool for you.

However, if you’re looking into trading, it is likely that you’re trying to build you wealth and also have a full-time job, so the last thing you want to do in your free time is stay chained to a desk to monitor alerts. Day trade alerts are massively time-sensitive and once they’re gone, they’re really gone. Missing them is a crucial mistake.

Even if you are only 1-2 minutes late, it is likely that you will completely miss the opportunity which in hindsight, is as frustrating as anything. It takes a whole lot of time and effort to stay on top of and follow day trade alerts. On top of that, you will likely deal with overwhelming anxiety while waiting closely for the next alert since you have to be lightning-fast to respond.

Penny stocks

Now, we get to penny stocks. Penny stocks are an automatic red flag for most people, and it is completely understandable as to why. There is a major and fundamental problem with doing trade alerts on penny stocks or micro-cap stocks. They simply do not have enough liquidity to support a trade alert service.

You may be wondering what this means, and in simpler terms, it basically means that since they are such small companies, there really aren’t a lot of people trading them or a lot of people interested in trading them. This poses a huge issue because of the fact that when an alert goes out, a whole heap of people rush to buy a stock like that all at once and because there simply aren’t enough sellers to absorb all of the buyers, the price absolutely explodes.

This then creates a problem because if you aren’t obsessively following the trade alerts, by the time you make it to your desk to make the trade, it is highly likely that the price has already severely skyrocketed due to the fact that so many subscribers have gotten in quicker and already purchased the stock on these micro-companies.

Then, on top of it all, the guy who alerted the trade would then opt to sell his position only to sell to subscribers. Once he sold his position, a huge tidal wave of sell orders would come in from all his subscribers, and the price would plummet right back down in record time. In the end, you will be left holding the bag (along with many other subscribers I’m sure). The price will have gone way down, and you will still be holding the stock at a loss while the “trade guru” had chalked up a profit and boasted this as another successful trade.

Lack of research

Staying up to date and educated in any situation is highly recommended. So, the biggest problem trade alert services seem to have is that they haven’t tested their trading strategies against historical data. For any given trading strategy, there are years of proof that this strategy worked over and over and was successful, however, some trade alert services have never done any research about how their trading strategies would have held up historically.

This is a massive problem because different trading strategies are optimal for different market conditions and some trade alert services might have periods of success, but can they hold up for the long term through various market conditions? Doing historical research is a great way to account for that, but most services don’t do that which makes it largely unsuccessful in the long run.

How Mindful Trader can help

Just when you though all of these problems were likely to create a gloomy outlook for traders, Mindful Trader comes to save the day. Unlike day trading, Mindful Trader is a swing trade alert service that relies on an entirely different approach compared to every other trade service. All of the trade alerts from Mindful Trader are based on a historical quantitative edge that was uncovered from years of stock market price research.

With Mindful Trader, you don’t have to sit in front of a screen for large amounts of time to monitor the stock market, instead, you can enjoy a relaxed approach. Eric Ferguson from Mindful Trader understands the stock market in an in-depth way and was once using the same trade alert services that are still around today, however, when he found little success, he took it upon himself to do better.

If you’re looking for a mindful, stress-free, well researched, and data-driven trade alert service, look no further than Mindful Trader. Happy trading!

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