Coin360 Weekly Dispatch | Crypto Market Updates & Highlights | June 30 - July 7, 2023
Table of Contents:
Crypto Market Overview
- Crypto Weekly Recap: Price Actions, Market Trends, and Key Developments
Major Crypto Breaches and Exploits
- Poly Network Faces Second Major Crypto Breach
- Multichain Exploit Impacts $126 Million in Tokens
Crypto Exchanges and Regulatory Challenges
- Binance CEO Denies Rumors Amid Regulatory Challenges
- Danish FSA Orders Saxo Bank to Sell Crypto Holdings
- Kraken Co-Founder Investigated for Cyberstalking Allegations
- Celsius and Former CEO Face Regulatory Allegations
Crypto Losses and Market Trends
- Crypto Losses Total $656 Million in H1 2023
Crypto Developments in the Financial Sector
Crypto and NFTs in the Entertainment Industry
- Taylor Swift's $100M Deal with FTX Falls Through
- NFT Market Decline Hits Bored Ape Yacht Club
- Dior Launches NFC Chip-Based Sneakers with NFTs
- Azuki NFT Project Faces Backlash Over Elementals Collection
- Melania Trump Unveils 'The 1776 Collection' NFTs
- Lacoste Expands NFT Ecosystem with Web3 Experiences
Crypto Weekly Recap: Price Actions, Market Trends, and Key Developments
- Bitcoin’s price slightly dropped by 0.78% this week.
- Last Friday, the price of Bitcoin briefly spiked through $31,000, reaching local highs of $31,268.
- It was fueled by a nearly $6 billion open interest expiry and anticipation of the quarterly options expiry and macroeconomic data from the United States.
- Later, Bitcoin's price experienced a sudden crash, dropping by 6.5% to $29,927 due to a sell-off triggered by a WSJ article highlighting shortcomings in spot Bitcoin ETF applications filed by BlackRock and Fidelity.
- Last Saturday, Bitcoin's price flirted with $30,000 amid overbought conditions and increased selling activity by miners.
- Last Sunday, Bitcoin (BTC) experienced a notable sellout by miners, transferring $105 million worth of BTC to exchanges.
- On Tuesday, BTC soared to over $31,000 amid the news that BlackRock and Nasdaq intended to partner for a Bitcoin ETF, the first of its kind in the US.
- Quiet market (US Independence Day) and good news powered this surge, where Bitcoin reached its weekly high of $31,300.
- On Wednesday, Bitcoin maintained a price of nearly $31,000. Valkyrie joined BlackRock in refiling a Bitcoin ETF application.
- On Thursday, Bitcoin experienced a dump of $1,500 to reach $30,000 after reaching a new YTD high of $31,400, resulting in over $140 million in liquidations. Bitcoin price dipped amid the release of hawkish Fed minutes.
- Bitcoin holders broke even, indicating a price level at which they neither gained nor lost.
- On Friday, Bitcoin (BTC) experienced a price decrease to $29,820 due to a "risk-off" sentiment in the market driven by higher yields on US Treasuries and the anticipation of further monetary policy tightening by the Fed.
- After that, it was reported that the U.S. added 209,000 jobs in June, falling short of the expected 230,000, causing a slight rise in the price of Bitcoin (BTC) to $30,250.
- The unemployment rate decreased from 3.7% in May to 3.6% in June, surpassing expectations.
Bitcoin Market Trends and Predictions: July 2023:
- Bitcoin's price may rise further in July as whales and sharks accumulate a significant amount of BTC, with wallets holding 10-10,000 BTC possessing 13 million Bitcoins, representing 67% of the circulating supply.
- Bitcoin's value increased by 83.8% in the first half of 2023, surpassing other major world assets.
- Bitcoin's profit rate signals a healthy future, with 79% of the circulating supply currently in profit.
- CryptoQuant, a data analytics firm, found that institutional investors are accumulating Bitcoin, indicating a long-term investment perspective despite market fluctuations.
- BlackRock CEO Larry Fink stated that cryptocurrency, particularly Bitcoin, has the potential to transform the financial industry.
- When it comes to price, ETH followed a similar pattern to BTC. However, ETH prices grew by 0.64% weekly instead of falling.
- Ethereum experienced an 83% increase in network fees in Q2 2023 due to the rise of meme coins, while Bitcoin fees increased by over 300%.
- On Monday, Lookonchain reported that an Ethereum whale had withdrawn over $90 million worth of ETH from Binance in one month.
- Over 10 million ETH valued at $20 billion is locked in liquid staking platforms, with impressive growth rates for Lido and Rocket Pool.
- On Monday, ERC-223 became part of Ethereum's official documentation and token standards. ERC-223 improves upon ERC-20 by addressing token loss in contracts and enabling tokens to be used as first-class assets in smart contracts.
- On Tuesday, ERC 7265 proposed a "circuit breaker" to protect DeFi protocols from hacks and potentially recover stolen funds.
- Large Ethereum transactions reportedly surged by 54.35%, reaching a total value of $2.81 billion, indicating increased whale activity and contributing to the recent mild bullish performance of Ethereum.
- On Friday, a newly launched ERC-20 token called VMPX caused Ethereum network fees to surge, resulting in the burning of over 1500 ETH and consuming nearly $3 million in gas fees in the last 24 hours.
- Large Ethereum whale transferred over 25,000 ETH, valued at around $48 million, to Coinbase and another substantial transaction of 30,000 ETH to OKEX, potentially indicating upcoming price volatility and decoupled movement from Bitcoin.
- Ethereum (ETH) dropped below $1,900 for the first time since June, hitting a low of $1,832.03 on Friday. It came after it reached its weekly high of $1,970 on Tuesday.
- Due to the unemployment rate news, the coin recovered to around $1,860 at the time of writing.
Layer 2 Revolution:
- StarkEx's Milestone: StarkEx, a Layer-2 solution, has processed over $1 trillion in on-chain trading volume since June 2020.
- Coinbase's Ethereum Layer-2 Integration: Coinbase has integrated Ethereum's Layer-2 solution, Arbitrum, into its base mainnet to reduce transaction fees and increase speed.
- Ethereum Name Service's Expansion: Ethereum Name Service (ENS) plans to expand to the Layer-2 ecosystem to improve scalability and efficiency.
- Arbitrum's Rise and Dominance: Arbitrum, Ethereum's Layer-2 solution, is gaining dominance due to its ability to handle high transaction volumes and reduce costs.
- Avail's Data Attestation Bridge Launch: Avail, a Polygon spinoff, has launched a data attestation bridge to Ethereum, aiming to reduce costs for layer 2 and 3 chains by securing data off-chain.
- Bitcoin: The new Bitcoin standard BRC-69 has seen a significant drop in data limit ordinals. Source
- Solana: Solana's price surged 18% to $20 as traders tapped into the liquid staking frenzy with the mSOL token. Source
- Polygon: Polygon 2.0 plans to leverage Matic re-staking and a new interoperability layer. Source
- Bitcoin Cash:
- Cardano: Vodafone Germany is using Cardano for its NFT venture. Source
- Pendle: Pendle experienced a 50% surge, with the Binance listing being a significant factor. Source
- Aptos: Aptos token saw a significant overnight jump as South Korea's trading volumes spiked. Source
- TON Blockchain: TON Blockchain has launched an on-chain encrypted messaging feature. Source
- Filecoin: Filecoin (FIL) continues its recovery, gaining 16% in a single day. Source
- Curve DAO: CRV has seen a 17% climb as its native stablecoin gains traction. Source
- Pepe 2.0: Pepe 2.0 has seen a nearly 1000% increase in a week, with potential to hit a $100M market cap. Source
- Fantom: Fantom (FTM) has shed 10% following multichain bridge withdrawals. Source
- Shiba Inu: A mysterious seller sold 511 billion SHIB over the past week. Source
- SUI Network: The unlocking date for SUI Network's tokens has been announced. Source
- Storj: Storj's massive price spike could soon see a retracement. Source
- BarnBridge: The SEC is investigating BarnBridge DAO, leading to closure of liquidity pools and suspension of protocol work. Source
Poly Network Faces Second Major Crypto Breach
Poly Network, a multi-chain interoperability protocol, suffered a crypto breach over the weekend, resulting in billions of counterfeit tokens being created. The attacker exploited a flaw in the platform's multisig protocol and compromised private keys. The attack affected 57 crypto assets across ten blockchains, including Ethereum and Binance Smart Chain.
Despite Poly Network's swift response, the attacker managed to steal millions of dollars worth of digital assets, presenting a liquidity challenge. This is the second major attack on Poly Network this year, highlighting concerns about the platform's security measures.
Multichain Exploit Impacts $126 Million in Tokens
An exploit has been confirmed across the bridges of Fantom, Moonriver, and Dogechain by the Multichain team. Approximately $126 million in user-supplied tokens were impacted. Users are advised to suspend the use of Multichain services and revoke all contract approvals.
The Multichain service is currently stopped, with no confirmed resume time. Bridges, which enable token transfers between networks, have been vulnerable, resulting in $2.66 billion in losses from similar exploits.
Binance CEO Denies Rumors Amid Regulatory Challenges
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) has denied rumors of major departures at the cryptocurrency exchange, stating that they are part of normal staff turnover. Notable figures have left the company.
Binance has lost more than 10% of its market share in the first half of 2023 due to regulatory actions and changes in trading fees. Despite this, CZ remains positive about a potential recovery within the next year and a half.
Binance is currently searching for a policy officer for its European operations after facing setbacks in France, the Netherlands, and the UK. In Australia, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is investigating Binance regarding the categorization of its users.
Danish FSA Orders Saxo Bank to Sell Crypto Holdings
The Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) has instructed Saxo Bank, a Copenhagen-based institution, to sell off its cryptocurrency holdings. This decision prohibits banks from using cryptocurrencies for risk mitigation, causing disruptions in the local economy.
The FSA considers Saxo Bank's crypto activities to be illegal since they fall outside the scope of legitimate financial institutions. Saxo Bank offers crypto trading platforms and cryptocurrency-linked Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and Exchange Traded Notes (ETNs) to its customers.
While the FSA's order will have a minimal impact on Saxo Bank's operations, as customers don't directly own the underlying cryptocurrency but buy financial products tracking its price, it represents a significant milestone in Denmark's crypto landscape, highlighting the changing relationship between traditional banking and digital assets.
Kraken Co-Founder Investigated for Cyberstalking Allegations
Kraken co-founder Jesse Powell is under investigation by federal law enforcement regarding allegations of hacking and cyberstalking a non-profit organization he founded, Verge Center for the Arts. FBI agents searched Powell's home in Los Angeles and seized electronic devices.
The investigation focuses on Verge's claims that Powell hindered their computer accounts, impeding access to emails and other messages. Powell has not been charged with any crimes, and his lawyer asserts that he has done nothing wrong.
The investigation is unrelated to Powell's involvement in the cryptocurrency arena or his position at Kraken.
Celsius and Former CEO Face Regulatory Allegations
Crypto lender Celsius and its former CEO, Alex Mashinsky, are facing allegations of violating US regulations, including misleading practices and failure to register with the regulatory body, according to investigators from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). The findings may lead to legal action against Celsius in US federal court.
The CFTC's investigation comes after the New York Attorney General's lawsuit against Mashinsky in January, which accused him of misleading investors. If the case proceeds, it would add to the CFTC's extensive repertoire of over 85 cases related to digital assets.
Crypto Losses Total $656 Million in H1 2023
According to a report by Beosin, a total of $656 million was lost in crypto hacks, scams, and rug pulls in the first half of 2023. This includes $471.43 million in protocol attacks, $108 million in phishing scams, and $75.87 million in rug pulls.
Approximately $215 million of stolen assets have been recovered, which is a significant improvement compared to previous years. The majority of stolen assets were Ethereum-based coins and tokens, and most losses were due to smart contract vulnerabilities. Overall, the losses in H1 2023 are lower compared to previous periods.
BlackRock and Valkyrie Refile for Bitcoin ETF
BlackRock, the world's largest asset management company, and Valkyrie Investments, a specialized alternative asset management firm, have refiled applications for a Bitcoin-based exchange-traded fund (ETF). Fidelity, with about $11 trillion in assets under administration, has also re-entered the field of spot Bitcoin ETF hopefuls.
The filings include details on surveillance sharing agreements (SSA) with Coinbase, a US-based crypto exchange. The ETFs, if approved, would be the first of their kind in the United States.
Revolut to Delist ADA, MATIC, and SOL in the US
Revolut, a cryptocurrency-friendly neobank, will delist Cardano (ADA), Polygon (MATIC), and Solana (SOL) from its platform in the United States in September. While purchases of these tokens are immediately closed for U.S. customers, they will still be able to hold and sell them until September 18.
Revolut attributed the delistings to changing laws and regulations surrounding cryptocurrencies in the United States. The firm clarified that it has no plans to delist these tokens in other markets where they remain available.
Other companies like Robinhood, eToro, and Bakkt have also announced delistings of ADA, MATIC, and SOL recently.
Taylor Swift's $100M Deal with FTX Falls Through
Taylor Swift's $100 million deal with cryptocurrency platform FTX fell through due to various factors. While initially praised for her due diligence, it was later revealed that Swift's executive team was surprised when FTX boss Samuel Bankman-Fried backed out of the deal.
Despite asking important questions about the nature of FTX's cryptocurrency assets, Swift's team proceeded with the deal after six months of negotiations. However, Bankman-Fried ultimately decided to drop the deal, possibly influenced by legal troubles and FTX's bankruptcy protection filing.
It is unlikely that Swift would have promoted FTX if the deal had gone through, as the negotiations collapsed just a month before FTX's downfall.
Top Weekly Altcoin Gainers and Losers
eCash XEC (+58.43%)
Maker MKR (+35.19%)
Flow FLOW (+19.07%)
BitDAO BIT (+17.50%)
Solana SOL (+17.13%)
FTX Token FTT (-27.59%)
Radix XRD (-16.92%)
ApeCoin APE (-16.13%)
Fantom FTM (-10.73%)
Kaspa KAS (-9.72%)
NFT Market Map
NFT Market Decline Hits Bored Ape Yacht Club
The NFT market has experienced a significant decline, with Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC) among those affected. Justin Bieber's NFT investment experienced a 95% downfall, while blue-chip NFTs suffered over 1,200 liquidations.
Amidst the turmoil, investors are shifting focus to essential pillars of the crypto domain, such as foundational companies and projects. However, recent days have seen an upsurge in trading volume across various NFT platforms, hinting at an undercurrent of hope amidst uncertainty.
Dior Launches NFC Chip-Based Sneakers with NFTs
French fashion house Dior has launched a line of men's sneakers with an NFC chip-based authentication system and "digital twin" NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain. Each pair of the B33 sneakers will be linked to a matching NFT, with the first style being released online on 6 July in a limited run of 470 pairs.
The move is part of parent company LVMH's recent push into blockchain-backed initiatives, but Dior has avoided using blockchain-related terminology in its promotional materials. The remaining six styles will feature an NFC chip but no NFT.
Azuki NFT Project Faces Backlash Over Elementals Collection
Azuki, a prominent NFT project, faced backlash over its Elementals collection's similarity to the original Azuki collection, leading to a 67% drop in floor price. The AzukiDAO, a group within the community, initiated a vote to reclaim 20,000 ether, alleging team misconduct. They also consider suing the Azuki creator, "Zagabond".
Despite the price drop, NFT platforms' trading volume increased, indicating market activity. The Azuki team acknowledged the criticism and pledged to rectify the situation. This case underscores the importance of community engagement and transparency in NFT projects.
Melania Trump Unveils 'The 1776 Collection' NFTs
Melania Trump unveiled a new set of NFTs called "The 1776 Collection" inspired by the upcoming Independence Day holiday. The NFTs are based on the Solana blockchain and feature iconic American imagery, priced at $50 with seven designs making up a total of 3,500 NFTs.
The Trump family's involvement in the NFT market began with Melania's release of her own NFT in December 2021, followed by Donald Trump's digital trading cards collection that sold out within 24 hours. The release of a second collection led to a significant drop in the value of the original NFTs.
Lacoste Expands NFT Ecosystem with Web3 Experiences
French clothing and footwear brand Lacoste has expanded its NFT ecosystem with new Web3 experiences. UNDW3 NFT holders can take part in points-based competitions and receive rewards and prizes through 'The Mission'. The UNDW3 card is a dynamic NFT that reflects activity within the community, with holders able to earn points through blockchain.
Points allow NFT holders to move up the rankings, making their non-fungible token rarer and more valuable. Lacoste sees blockchain as an accelerator, ushering in a more inclusive and experiential digital realm. Other brands are also creating their own way into the Web3.
This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.