Everything is made in China these days…. even Bitcoin. Even though ICO’s have been officially eradicated from the country in September and most bitcoin exchanges have moved offshore, bitcoin mining is still done primarily in the world’s big exporter of stuff. A quick look at the network’s main miners confirms….

The top six biggest mining pools from Antpool (blue) to BTCC (red) are all largely based in China. Some rough estimates put China’s hashpower at more than 80% of the total network.

Of course, their main rival will have none of that. The Japanese City of Kazuno has launched a campaign to attract cryptocurrency miners.

Not only is Bitcoin legal in Japan, while its status is questionable in China, but the city of Kazuno has a lot to offer this budding industry, including an abundance of renewable energy and a picture-perfect cool climate that computer’s love.

Bitcoin transaction volumes along with the price per coin is reaching record high levels as more and more humans begin to wake up, but the energy it takes to power those transactions is not trivial. According to Motherboard, a single transaction can take as much energy as your entire house uses in a week.

So we need to be mindful of how that energy is created.

Market Overview

Two of the biggest news stories in financial media today could give us a hint about the current status of the market conditions.

21st Century Fox is trying to sell off most of it’s business to Disney, and Broadcom seeking to take over Qualcomm for $105 Billion. The latter deal would represent the largest ever transaction in the tech industry and even though Qualcomm doesn’t seem to be interested in the merger, Broadcom is preparing for a hostile takeover.

Huge merger deals have been a hallmark of a market that is flush with cash and has record low borrowing rates. It’s a great way to grow an already large company and the banks are only too happy to lend to borrowers such as these.

As far as stocks are concerned though, it’s very important that we note the cash holdings of investors in order to understand exactly how much more money is currently sitting on the sidelines and waiting to be put to work in this market.

At the moment Mutual Funds and Money Markets seem to be running low…

However, this is only one indicator and just like we keep seeing with the VIX volatility index reaching shockingly record lows, it doesn’t seem like we’re in any way in a normal market.

Over to Korea

Today Donald Trump is in Seoul South Korea. I’m sure you can guess the main topic that he will be discussing with Moon Jae-in.

Though the Trump’s wild rhetoric on North Korea differs from South Korea’s more conservative approach, the US President’s visit has been carefully scripted by some of his top advisors. As long as he doesn’t deliver any surprise remarks or off-cue quips, we should be good here.

Of course, the President is known for his unpredictability and even prides himself on it. In fact, just this morning he was called out for sending a tweet that undercut his own Foreign Policy Advisers.

The Saudi Situation…

Does seem to have caught the market’s attention with the number one asset going berserk this morning is crude oil.

The breakout above $55.55 (yellow line) was significant and so far this morning it seems that market exuberance and momentum are taking hold.

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This comes much to the delight of OPEC and other major oil producers who have been trying to push the market to these levels for the past 3 years. Perhaps King Salman really does know what he’s doing.

As always, I’m glad to hear your thoughts, comments, and questions. Simply reply here or tag me on your favorite social network.

Let’s have an awesome day!!

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