Blockchain: The Next Mortgage Industry Shake-Up?

Blockchain: The Next Mortgage Industry Shake-Up?

It has been quite some time since a new technology came along that holds the promise of revolutionising the mortgage industry. E-signatures and e-mortgages still offer the promise of a major technology shift, but 17 years later, adoption of e-mortgage technology has been anaemic

Along comes a new technology: Blockchain.

Will blockchain finally be the game-changing technology for the industry? I believe blockchain will be the next big thing. Although there were high hopes that e-signatures would be the solution that finally improves the process, the industry has been slow to adopt e-signatures as the core game-changing technology – and for good reason. Switching to digital mortgages requires substantial process and technology changes. Also, digital mortgages require the mortgage ecosystem – from the originator to the title company, to a closing agent, to a county recorder, to investor – to support the “e” process. This has been an almost insurmountable hurdle to overcome.

Although it has been close to two decades since e-signatures became legitimate under the law, e-closings are still not commonplace for mortgages. It’s no fault of the technology, per se – clearly, using e-signatures can make life easier for borrowers. Yet, the mortgage industry is still a paper-and-ink industry that requires mortgage teams and customers alike to go to the title company’s office and sign stacks of documents by hand. This is where blockchain technology comes in. I believe that blockchain will ultimately become the tool that enables wider adoption of digital mortgages.

What is blockchain, and why should mortgage lenders care?

Most mortgage professionals have heard of blockchain, yet no one knows for sure how it will impact mortgage lending. Many in the industry believe that blockchain will be used for digital currency or high-frequency trading. But the fact is that blockchain-based technology holds the promise of creating a completely new basis for the digital mortgage without any of the previous hurdles.

Blockchain technology that is correctly applied to documents and data provides the same level of preservation of information, document integrity and tamper seal solutions as the original mortgage without requiring a completely reworked “e” process. Blockchain technology can work with digital signing or with a paper signing. Notary seals, recordation information, e-notes and paper notes, and video recording of closings can all be tamper-sealed and immutably recorded.

Why is that so revolutionary for the industry? Because if you use the right blockchain solution, it helps overcome the three previously mentioned hurdles that stopped e-signatures in their tracks: With blockchain, you don’t have to have everyone in the mortgage ecosystem agree to an e-mortgage document process, nor do you need everyone to support the e-signed documents. More importantly, blockchain solutions will not require lenders to retool processes, as blockchain technology sits as a thin layer on top of the existing document management system. Blockchain technology, when properly applied, has the ability to freeze a copy of signed documentation to prove that it has never been altered – and, further, that the original document is in its original location.

An enabler, not a replacement, of e-mortgages

Will blockchain replace digital signatures? It certainly has the potential to change the way digital signatures are utilized, but no, blockchain will not replace digital signatures. The goal is to help facilitate their use by making blockchain the fundamental enabling technology. As we’ve seen through their slow adoption, e-signatures are not the right tool to be the lead player, but they are still an important tool in the mortgage industry’s toolbox.

What blockchain technology will do is shift the way that the industry thinks about an e-mortgage. In the past, an e-mortgage was envisioned as a soup-to-nuts digital file that contained only digital documents and e-signatures – a configuration that was extremely tough to implement because of the hurdles described previously. Blockchain brings something new to the table by offering the mortgage team and customer the same benefits whether signing digitally or on paper. Again, e-signatures will become the technology that makes some parts of the mortgage process better for the consumer and the lender, but it won’t be the underpinning technology around a digital mortgage.

Building on the blockchain backbone

As we look back over the past 17 years of the industry’s anaemic attempt to get widespread adoption for e-signatures, it’s important to reiterate that this wasn’t a failing of the digital signature technology itself. Instead, the failure was because e-signatures required clearance of too many significant hurdles. Within this environment, blockchain has emerged as a problem-solving technology that doesn’t require the same level of clearance of the industry’s hurdles.

Blockchain offers a completely different baseline technology on which to build the digital mortgage. Although blockchain is poised to ultimately become bigger than e-signatures and replace them as the core driving technology, the ability to sign digitally will still be hugely important in the mortgage industry. Tools such as e-signatures, electronic closings and e-vaults are vital components of the overall e-mortgage solution.

What’s changing is that e-signatures will be replaced as the core technology behind e-mortgages. These components will need to plug into the blockchain backbone, which will become the linchpin that drives an electronic mortgage. Shifting the focus from e-sign tools to blockchain as the backbone for compliance and document management is a win-win, as it still allows for the option to insert e-signatures as needed along the way. In short, blockchain is the transformation in technology that the industry has needed for nearly two decades – one that will finally allow e-signatures to become incredibly powerful.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

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Ethereum Bids for Wall Street with ETF Application

The ETF fever might be making a comeback as SEC places itself in the spotlight once again following its decision to review their rejection of the bitcoin ETF. Heat now might be turned up a notch as the new kid in the block, ethereum, is trying its luck too, in a bid for Wall Street.

Joseph Quintilian and Gregory DiPrisco have founded EtherIndex which is to act as a trust for an Ethereum ETF with Coinbase acting as a custodian and price based on GDAX while Kraken is to act as back-up, both regulated exchanges.

Not much is known about the two, but Quintilian appears to be a Wall Street banker or trader, seemingly very well connected and apparently politically involved. He is a board member of Concord 51, a political action committee that targets young professionals, and, according to their LinkedIn, “not just the young Republican establishment, but also the unengaged.”

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The two have also founded Axiom Markets, “a proprietary energy trading firm,” according to their website, and, interestingly, they say “Axiom Markets has melded technology and trading together. Our programmers and traders worked as a team during the development and implementation of our in-house proprietary platform.”

That makes it somewhat easy to see how they ended up at eth, but do they have a chance with their ETF? Mr. Eduardo A. Aleman, Assistant Secretary at the SEC, has made a new ruling on the eth ETF this April 21st 2017. It’s slightly confusing.

First of all, Aleman has instituted proceedings “to determine whether the proposed rule change should be approved or disapproved.” He wants written comments from the public (presumably because he can’t do his own research as we saw from his last decision where outdated and factually incorrect information was used) and, he says he hasn’t made a decision, but is “providing notice of the grounds for disapproval under consideration.” These grounds are now a bit familiar:

“The Commission is instituting proceedings to allow for additional analysis of the proposed rule change’s… which requires, among other things, that the rules of a national securities exchange be “designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices” and “to protect investors and the public interest.”

Eth and bitcoin are similar, but also very different. First of all, none of the big Chinese exchanges lists eth for trading. Secondly, the two biggest eth exchanges are Coinbase and Kraken, both regulated.

Ethereum is backed by almost all household brands who have formed an alliance in support of the platform. Microsoft is a big proponent, with eth’s protocol added to the IBM spearheaded Hyperledger.

The currency has a philosophy of “political neutrality.” The state of Arizona has now declared that smart contracts are to be treated no differently than any other contracts. Mr. Aleman should approve.

Mr Aleman, Open the Doors for Business

If he keeps rejecting these ETFs then he will show to a new generation that regulators are standing in the way of innovation in the guise of “protecting the public” or “preventing manipulation.” Why hasn’t the SEC delisted the banks that manipulated the LIBOR rates if they so keen on “preventing manipulation?”

Because that’s probably just filler. The decision, instead, appears political, probably by a democrat who should be fired due to the shambolic way he handled the bitcoin ETF rejection, allowing widespread speculation for weeks even though a decision had seemingly been made and rejecting it at, literally, the last minute.

Get out of the way of this generation’s invention SEC. Open the doors for business or your youth will just go to Britain where they’ll be welcomed with open arms, further precipitating your “third-world airports,” as President Trump called them.

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10 MLM Home Business Success Tips

Navigating an MLM Business Can Be Tough — Follow These MLM Success TIps
Many people are scared away from network marketing, also known as multi-level marketing (MLM), because of all the myths and misunderstanding about this business type. Part of negativity comes from low MLM success rates. However, a multi-level marketing business isn't destined to any more unsuccessful than any other business. No matter what business you start, you need to build it to be successful.

To enhance your multi-level marketing (MLM) and recruiting efforts within the world of direct selling, consider using these MLM Success tips:

1) Brush Up on the Realities of MLMs
To stay safe from pyramid schemes and MLM scams, arm yourself with knowledge. Learn about the industry as a whole, research MLM companies carefully, and determine if you're a good match with your sponsor. The truth is, while you can get rich in MLM, statistics show that less than one out of 100 MLM representatives actually see MLM success or make any money. However, that's not necessarily the business or MLM industry's fault. Most athletes never make it to the Olympics, but that's not sports or the Olympics' fault. Any great feat requires knowledge and action. 

2) Find a Company With A Product You Love
You can’t sell something or share your business if you don’t genuinely have pride in what you are representing. Do your MLM research and partner with a company that has a product you can get excited about.

Don't forget to look into the company's compensation plan before you join and make sure it is favorable to you.

3) Be Genuine and Ethical
One reason that direct selling gets a bad rap is that many representatives use hype and sometimes deception to lure in new recruits. This leads many to believe that the MLM companies themselves condone this behavior, but in truth, they don't.

Legitimate MLM companies encourage you to be honest in your dealings with customers and potential recruits. If you love your product, your enthusiasm is enough to promote it. Just make sure you're not over-the-top or making exaggerated or false claims. Good business conduct will ensure that your customers and recruits don't feel duped, and as a result, will stick with you. 

4) Don’t Barrage Your Friends and Family
Nothing will annoy your family and cost you friends more than constantly pestering them about your business. There's nothing wrong with letting them know what you're doing and seeing if they have an interest, but if the answer is "no," let it go. Many companies suggest making a list of 100 people you know, and while that's not wrong, you should consider that most successful MLMers have very few people from their original list of 100 people in their business. In most cases, friends and family who are in the business often come AFTER seeing the MLMer's success. Success in MLM comes from treating it like any other business, in which you focus on the people who want what you have to offer.

5) Identify Your Target Market
One of the biggest mistakes new MLMers make is looking at everyone (including friends and family #4) as a potential customer or recruit.

This is one area where the MLM industry gets it wrong. Like any other business, you're going to have greater success and efficiency if you identify your target market and focus your marketing efforts at them. Someone who doesn't care about vitamins or health and wellness isn't a good person to pester about your business. 

6) Make an Effort to Share Your Product//Business Plan Everyday
Many MLM sponsors will have you focus on recruiting new business builders; however, your income, in legitimate MLM, comes from the sales of products or services. Further, customers who love the products or services can be more easily converted into new business builders. Just like any other business (home-based or otherwise), getting the word out about your product or service can benefit your target market is the key to generating new customers and recruits.

Some ideas include sharing a product sample, inviting a neighbor to host a product party, or starting a website or social media account.

7) Sponsor, Don’t Recruit
One of the benefits of MLM is the ability to bring in new business builders and profit from the sales they make in their business. While some see this as "using" others, the reality is that you're being rewarded for helping others succeed. But for them to succeed, you need to see your role not as racking up as many recruits as possible, but in being a leader and trainer. The focus then is on the success of those you help in the business, not on you. That means you need to take time to train them, answer questions, celebrate their successes, and be a support when things are tough. 

8) Set a Goal for Parties or Presentations
MLM is a person-to-person to business. While many people don't like that aspect, especially in the digital age, the reality is that it's the personal touch that sells the products and business, and retains customers and business builders. Based on your compensation plan and goals, determine how many people you need to show your products or business to reach your goals in the time you want. Doing so will ensure you grow your business rather than just sustain it.

7) Listen and Sell the Solution
Many companies provide scripts to help you sell the product or service. While these can be helpful in teaching you about your product and dealing with objections, sales is all about being a solution to what a customer needs. By qualifying your contact first, and then listening to their needs, you can tailor your pitch so that you're the solution to their problem. 

8) Learn How to Market
MLMers often stick to the three-foot rule (everyone within 3-feet of you is a prospect) and other traditional marketing tactics. But direct sales is like any other business. It can and should be marketed in a variety of ways that takes into consideration your target market, what it needs, how you can help it, and where it can be found. To that end, you can use a variety of marketing tools including a website (check your companies policies about websites), email,​ and social media to increase product sales and interest in your business. 

9) Stand Out from Other Distributors
One of the challenges of MLM is convincing prospects to buy or join with you as opposed to the other reps that live in the neighborhood or they know online. You're selling the same stuff as thousands of others, meaning consumers have a choice. So you need to do something that makes you unique compared to everyone else. Give people a reason to choose you over other reps.

While you don't want to pester and annoy people, in many cases, with good follow up, you can make the sale or recruit at a future time. Sales is often about timing, and 'no' in sales doesn't always mean 'never.' If someone tells you no, but there was something in the dialogue that suggested they might be interested in the future, ask if you can put them on your mailing or email list, or if you can call in six months to follow up. Many will give you their email or phone number just because they want to be nice. Even so, use your calendar or contact system to remind you when to call. 

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Segwit on Testnet Supports 1.7 MB Blocks With 8800+ Transactions

Bitcoin Core’s scaling solution Segregated Witness (Segwit) will likely support 1.7 MB bitcoin blocks when activated, testnet experiments have revealed.

According to Smartbit, a bitcoin testnet data provider, Segwit is currently able to process 1.7 MB blocks on the bitcoin testnet, with more than 8,865 transactions. The current bitcoin blockchain capped with a 1 MB block size can only handle around 2,500 transactions.

However, the transactions processed on the testnet were p2pkh transactions. Although the standard 1 MB blocks are limited to process around 2,500 transactions, they can still handle 5,235 p2pkh transactions in each block.

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Alternatively stated, the activation of Segwit will likely result in a 75 percent increase on the current 1 MB block size if implemented in an optimum ecosystem.

On November 23, bitcoin trader and analyst WhalePanda introduced a testnet experiment conducted by the Bitfury analytics team shared by the BitFury Group chief information officer Alex Petrov. While the types of transactions settled in Segwit-enabled blocks could vary, the Bitfury analytics team’s research concluded that 1.7 MB was the average block size based on their experiment conducted on the bitcoin testnet.

More importantly, WhalePanda noted that 1.7 MB is theoretical and other numbers such as 2.1 MB or Lightning co-author Thaddeus Dryja’s 3.7 MB are also all hypothetical. The only issue with Segwit which the miners, especially the Chinese mining community struggles to deal with, is that it can’t guarantee a specific block size due to a wide range of variables including different transaction types and circumstances.

In January of this year, Dryja noted that his experiments on the bitcoin testnet demonstrated the capability of Segwit to handle 3.7 MB blocks. He explained:

“I have a script that will spam testnet and make 3.7MB blocks. It’s not a 800KB regular block with txids and output scripts, and a 2.9MB witness block with just a bunch of signatures. It’s a single block, that looks pretty much the same as old blocks with a few extra requirements, that’s 3.7MB.”

The on-chain capacity expansion suggested or discovered by Dryja is a 3.7x increase to the current standard 1 MB block size. Dryja’s discovery offers a significantly different perception of Segwit’s on-chain capacity increase in comparison to Petrov and the Bitfury team’s research. This huge gap, which at this stage is completely theoretical and based on assumptions, should be the main discussion point of Segwit activation.

As explained by security experts such as Andreas Antonopoulos in the past, Segwit is more than a conventional block size increase solution. Its advantages derives from its ability to fix transaction malleability, provide infrastructure for two-layer solutions and overall, optimize the bitcoin network. Some experts described Segwit as a “Swiss army knife of a scaling solution.”

In fact, Slush, the CEO and IT architect of Satoshi Labs, the parent company of bitcoin hardware wallet manufacturer Trezor, stated:

“Bitcoin as Gold is Bitcoin without Segwit. Just activate it and whole world of new applications and solutions will appear.”

The only question left for the community to consider is, what happens if Segwit is activated and it does not provide on-chain scaling that is on par with the community’s expectation? What if Segwit’s 1.7 to 3.7x theoretical increase is not sufficient enough to scale the network?

Then, the community can begin to consider the possibility of expanding the block size of Segwit-enabled bitcoin blockchain.

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Real Estate Mogul: Here’s Why You Should Buy

Real Estate Mogul: Here's Why You Should Buy | Simplifying The Market

Real Estate Mogul: Here’s Why You Should Buy

Wednesday April 26th, 2017 First Time Home BuyersFor Buyers

 

Real Estate mogul, Sean Conlon, host of The Deed: Chicago on CNBC, was recently asked the question, should you buy? Or should you rent a house?

Conlon responded:

“I am a true believer that you save every penny and you buy your first house… and that is still the fastest path to wealth in this country.”

Conlon went on to suggest that first-time buyers put down 10-20% “if they can make it work,” and to remain in their home at least 4-5 years to see a return on their investment.

Who is Sean Conlon, and why should you listen to his advice?

Within a few years of working in the real estate industry, Conlon had established himself as one of the leading agents in the United States and has founded 3 billion-dollar brokerages dealing in residential, commercial and investment sales. Since immigrating to America from the United Kingdom in 1990, he believes very strongly in the American Dream and the role that homeownership plays in achieving it. Conlon is quoted on his website as saying:

“I treat people the way I would like to be treated if I went in to buy a house and I work harder than anybody I know. I think if you do that in America, you will always succeed.”

Bottom Line

Homeownership is an investment you can leverage against in the future that not only provides shelter and safety but also helps you build your family’s wealth. If you are debating whether or not to purchase a home this year, let’s get together to discuss the opportunities available in today’s market!

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Cryptocurrency Inflation V Deflation

cryptocurrency inflation v deflation

Cryptocurrency Inflation v Deflation
 

In the world of cryptocurrency, there are two main types of ecosystems. Either a cryptocurrency is inflationary – with new coins generated by mining or staking – or it is deflationary. A lot of people claim bitcoin’s deflationary status is a problem, and how minor inflation could alleviate these concerns. However, there are different aspects of either concept that need to be taken into account first.
 

1. DEFLATION
 

Most cryptocurrency enthusiasts are well aware of how bitcoin has a fixed supply cap of 21 million coins. It is expected the last bitcoin will be mined around the year 2140, even though a large portion of the available supply is in circulation already. Some financial experts claim bitcoin’s capped coin supply is a problem, as it makes the popular cryptocurrency deflationary. Since no additional coins will be brought into circulation from that point forward, there will be no more inflation for bitcoin.
 

Deflation in the traditional financial ecosystem is a bad thing. Then again, cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin cannot be compared to any other currency in the world, thus making it a rather moot point. It is also a clear indication of how most economists are stuck in their old ways of thinking. Deflation is often associated with economies that not performing all that well. In most cases, deflation leads to falling prices. If that were to happen to bitcoin, things could go from bad to worse rather quickly.

 

One thing to keep in mind is how during times of financial hardship, consumers are not investing but flocking to liquid currency. For bitcoin, that could be a good thing, as it may even lead to future prosperity. From a long-term perspective, deflationary currencies are by far the better option. In bitcoin’s case, deflation will – probably – cause a rise in value. There is no real reason to think deflation is bad for bitcoin by any means.

 

2. INFLATION
 

Every major traditional currency known to man is inflationary. There is no hard limit as to how many US Dollars, Euros, or Pounds Sterling there can be at any given time. Central banks can use a technique called “helicopter money” to introduce more bills and coins to an ecosystem if they see the need to do so. With more money to go around, they hope to improve the financial situation for their specific region.

 

Inflation also has a nasty side effect that most people tend to overlook. As the supply of an available currency continues to grow, it makes the previously existing supply worth a bit less. In the world of cryptocurrency, there are two types of inflation: proof-of-work and proof-of-stake. The first option makes bitcoin an inflationary currency until all 21 million BTC have been generated. Proof-of-stake allows for a virtually unlimited coin supply even when there are no longer mining rewards to be distributed.

 

Although a lot of people see no harm in inflationary cryptocurrencies, it provides a bit of a problem when it comes to estimating a coin’s value. Since there are more coins every day, inflationary cryptocurrencies cannot be labeled as a store of value per se. Interestingly enough, some of the major cryptocurrencies have decided to take the inflationary approach, including Ethereum – switching to proof-of-stake soon – and Dash. Other currencies, such as Litecoin, have taken the same model as bitcoin, effectively limiting their supply. From a store of value point-of-view, deflationary cryptocurrencies are the better option, by the look of things.

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

 

Contributor JP Buntinx

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Bitcoin surpasses GOLD..AGAIN!! Making this Round 2… Will it hold?

thearcanebear57 in bitcoin
Fun little moment…

Bitcoin has had its amazing runs, and to see it for the second time surpass gold; is absolutely amazing. These are crazy times, banks are in negative interest rates in many places around the world. A "la la" land revolving around this ever prevalent debt scheme. This is a good sing, it means even the traditional investor is forced to look at this technology. For those who don;'t know about blockchain and are in the banking industry. They should probably quite and find something new.
Prices sourced from Google and   http://goldprice.org

Arcane Conclusions

WE are still getting used to the future, and our outlook is bright., Hard times ahead, but many amazing things to look forward to.
Thank you for joining our Journey  Tijo http://@thearcane

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Trump asked all US ambassadors appointed by Obama to leave office by January 20th. Isn’t that unreasonable, and does this make him thin-skinned?

Katy Burton
Written 32m ago
This question makes me sad for our country. It shows how divided and hateful we have become over the past eight years. Many people disagree with ANYthing President Trump does. It doesn’t seem to matter if it is good or bad, right or wrong, or that other presidents have done the exact same thing. The simple fact that President Trump did it makes it wrong or bad to so many. Those people aren’t thinking objectively (if they are even thinking at all). Their hateful little minds are made up before the situation even presents itself. This is childish and is certainly not benefiting our country.

For the people who are criticizing the appointed Ambassadors not having been given “enough time” before they were replaced, are you telling me those Ambassadors are ignorant? It is nothing new. Wouldn’t/ shouldn’t they have been anticipating it?

What about the “peaceful transition of power” that Hillary was counseling Trump about before the election? You know, when she and 0bama thought she would win. 0bama just couldn’t do enough in his last days to subvert Trump’s administration with his hasty executive orders after her loss.

I don’t expect everyone to agree with everything President Trump does, but neither do I expect criticism for good things. I thought the people of America were better than that. He is piloting our plane, people. Do you really want to do all you can to ensure he crashes? Because America goes down with him.

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Breaking: SEC reviewing Bitcoin ETF rejection

Bitcoin ETF rejection under review?

According to reports out within the last hour, the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) plans on reviewing it's decision to reject the Winklevoss ETF from just over 1 month ago.

The release can be seen here: https://www.cryptocoinsnews.com/breaking-sec-will-review-decision-winklevoss-bitcoin-etf-rejection/

The SEC originally decided to rule against the Winklevoss ETF proposal citing a lack of market surveillance and regulation. Specifically, the SEC rejected a rule change that would have allowed the ETF to be included on the BATS BZX exchange.

Once the original rejection was obtained, BATS applied for a review of the decision from the SEC. As of this morning it is looking like that review has been granted. 

It is interesting that the SEC is reviewing the decision considering they just declined the approval of another Bitcoin ETF no more than 2 weeks ago. That makes 2 Bitcoin ETF rejections in the last month alone.

Even more interesting is that it appears an Ethereum ETF proposal is now also being mulled over by the SEC. It can be seen here:

http://www.coindesk.com/sec-now-weighing-ethereum-etf-proposal/

So, now we have a Bitcoin ETF rejection review in the works as well as an Ethereum ETF proposal in the works…

It doesn't seem like the day is far off when we will see one of these cryptocurrenices trading via an ETF on a major US Stock Exchange.

Perhaps maybe even Steem one day?! 😉

Bitcoin and Ethereum are both up near their all time highs on the news.

Sources: http://www.coindesk.com/sec-orders-review-winklevoss-bitcoin-etf-rejection/

Follow me:http://@jrcornel

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Steem Dollars are now selling for $1.50 on Poloniex! Take advantage of this odd situation now!

bitcoinmeister63 in steemit
What is going on with the price? No time to research. This is a unique opportunity for holders of Steem dollars. They should only be around $1. Good luck. If you appreciate up to the minute cryptocurrency news like this then follow me here and on Twitter (@techbalt) and sub to my youtube channel.

https://twitter.com/TechBalt/status/856892306418434050

https://www.youtube.com/user/BaltimoreHourly/videos

EDIT: Thanks @bbkoopsta for suggesting that the crazy Tether situation might have something to do with this. Perhaps people who want a stable $1 crypto are flocking into Steem Dollars and ironically making Steem Dollars not so stable at $1 (to the way up side though!)

More Tether/Steem dollar info here:  http://https://steemit.com/tether/@acidyo/tether-vs-steem-dollars

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