World’s Largest Bitcoin Mining Pool to Launch Ethereum Mining Operation

  • BTC.com, bitcoin's largest mining pool, is set to launch an Ethereum mining pool.
  • The operation is expected to reach 12% of the cryptocurrency's global hashrate within 12 months.

BTC.com, the world’s largest bitcoin mining pool, is reportedly going to launch an Ethereum mining operation that is expected to have 12% of the second-largest cryptocurrency’s hashrate within the next 12 months.

According to Forbes the operation, a mining pool, is set to support both ethereum (ETH) and ethereum classic (ETC), with its users being able to change between the two cryptocurrencies according to their preference.

BTC.com notably claims to have mined 21% of all newly-mined bitcoin this past year, and at press time accounts for about 15.6% of the flagship cryptocurrency’s hashrate, according to Blockchain.info data. Similarly, it accounts for about 14% of bitcoin cash’s total hashrate.

Zhuang Zhong, director of the firm’s mining pool, revealed he believes launching an Ethereum mining pool is set to help expand the cryptocurrency’s network. BTC.com’s operation, he noted, is expected to grow to 12% of the cryptocurrency’s hashrate. He said:

Because contracts are charged per line of executed code and miners are rewarded for dedicated hashes using Ghost, ethereum provides multiple different reward incentives to contribute hash power to the network, We hope to expand ethereum’s network by relaying those rewards through our FPPS system.

BTC.com is notably owned by cryptocurrency mining hardware manufacturer Bitmain, which revealed an Ethash ASIC miner earlier this year, capable of mining both ethereum and ethereum classic. The new mining machine sparked a debate within the ETH community regarding ASIC resistance, which hasn’t been implemented.

Bitmain, as CryptoGlobe covered, is eyeing an $18 billion initial public offering (IPO), potentially the biggest one in history. In the first quarter of this year the company recorded $1.1 billion in profits, helping it justify its valuation. Its upcoming IPO has been dissected by BitMEX research.

Ethereum is notably set to transition to Casper, a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus algorithm that will replace its current Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm. The transition seemingly doesn’t worry BTC.com, as Zhong revealed it’s “still possible to host a mining pool in PoS mode.”

Per the mining pool operator’s words, creating such a mining pool will be a complex task. One that is seemingly being faced with confidence as the operators have “a lot of hands-on experience with wallet and Ethereum smart contracts to make a PoS mining pool possible.”

Chinese Yuan 'Inversely Correlated' with Bitcoin, Amidst US-China Trade Wars

Since January 2018, China and the US have been involved in an intense trade war in which both countries have significantly increased tariffs on imported goods and services.

Due partly to the rising tension between the two countries, the Chinese yuan (CNY) has been losing value against the USD. During the same time period, the price of bitcoin (BTC) and other major cryptoassets has been surging.

As noted by the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the value of BTC, the world’s most dominant cryptocurrency, increased by 26.5% to $7,878 during the time period from May 5 to May 17. Notably, US President Donald Trump had announced on May 5 that he would further increase tariffs on goods imported from mainland China.

Chinese Yuan Weakens as Nation’s Government Responds to Increased Tariffs

The SCMP pointed out that the yuan dropped to its lowest level since the past six months after the Chinese government responded to Trump administration’s decision to impose higher tariffs on China.

Commenting on the price fluctuations of both the yuan and bitcoin, Garrick Hileman, a Macroeconomics Researcher at London School of Economics (LSE) and Head of Research at Blockchain.com, remarked:

We are observing a strong inverse correlation between the [Renminbi] RMB’s value and bitcoin, meaning that recent RMB declines over trade tensions have been closely matched by increases in the value of bitcoin.

“Correlation Does Not Necessarily Equal Causation”

Hileman also mentioned that we “cannot be 100% certain” that the bitcoin price has been increasing due to heightened concerns regarding trade tensions and the corresponding decline in the value of the yuan. The blockchain researcher stated:

Trade tensions and declines in the RMB’s exchange rate as correlation does not necessarily equal causation.

Hileman, who earned his Phd from LSE, revealed:

This is not the first time we’ve seen significant increases in the value of bitcoin taking place alongside yuan concerns.

He added that there’s “growing recognition of bitcoin as ‘digital gold’ and it being used as a hedge against various macroeconomic risks.”

“This Year, the Narrative Is Bitcoin, Bitcoin, Bitcoin”

According to the SCMP, bitcoin’s price may have surged recently due to the generally positive remarks made about it at the Consensus 2019 conference.

Meltem Demirors, the Chief Strategy Officer at CoinShares, a crypto treasury management firm, has also confirmed recently that the narrative this year has been mostly about Bitcoin. Demirors revealed that both institutions and retail investors are “feeling good” and are “more confident” about the long-term potential of Bitcoin and the evolving ecosystem that supports it.