Coin360 Weekly Dispatch | Crypto Market Updates & Highlights | October 21 - October 27, 2023
Crypto Weekly Market Update
Table of Contents
Crypto Market Overview
- Crypto Weekly Recap: Price Actions, Market Trends, and Key Developments
Market Movements and Investment Trends
- BlackRock's Bitcoin ETF Fuels Market Surge
- FTX's Financial Woes and Legal Troubles
- Worldcoin's Token Transition and Regulatory Hurdles
Regulatory and Legal Updates
- UK Cracks Down on Crypto with New Law
- US Lawmakers Target Binance and Tether
- Taiwan Introduces Virtual Asset Management Bill
- Solana's Growth Strategy Amid Regulatory Caution
Public Perception and Media Narratives
- Crypto Funding for Hamas: Fact or Fiction?
Partnerships and Collaborations
- Mastercard's Web3 Ventures with MetaMask and MoonPay
- NFT Market Struggles Despite Crypto Boom
- Yuga Labs Wins NFT Copyright Lawsuit
- Avant Arte and CryptoPunks Team Up for Prints
Crypto Weekly Recap: Price Actions, Market Trends, and Key Developments
- Weekly change: +18.35%
- BTC stayed above $30,000 this week due to ETF buzz.
- MicroStrategy's Bitcoin holdings turned profitable on Monday, showing a $132M paper profit as BTC crossed $30,000.
- BlackRock's Bitcoin ETF briefly appeared, then vanished from the DTCC list, yet didn't dampen market optimism.
- Bitcoin's price hit $31,000 on Tuesday, a first since July.
- ETF hopes pushed Bitcoin over $34,000, causing $178M in bearish trader losses.
- Midweek, Bitcoin broke $35,000, spurred by bullish signals and spot ETF expectations.
- Bitcoin dominance reached its highest since April 2021, adding $120B to crypto markets in a day.
- Crypto sentiment peaked on Wednesday, with the Fear & Greed Index at 72/100.
- BTC price hovered around $34,000 at the time of writing.
- Institutional crypto investments hit $66M last week, 83.7% of which was in Bitcoin.
- Q3 2023 U.S. GDP jumped 4.9%, driven by consumer spending and job growth, easing inflation concerns and likely stabilizing Fed rates.
- Weekly change: +13.53%
- ETH experienced more price volatility than BTC, despite lagging behind BTC.
- It hit $1,800 on Monday for the first time since mid-August, fueled by broad market optimism.
- On Tuesday, SEC reportedly approved Grayscale's Ether ETF filing, boosting the price to $1,850.
- Ethereum fees surged due to a renewed meme coin craze on the same day.
- FTX transferred $8.6M to Binance on Wednesday, potentially for selling during the price spike.
- ETH peaked at a weekly high of $1,860 on Thursday.
- FTX cold wallets moved $19M in Solana and Ether to crypto exchanges.
- Deutsche Bank and SC Ventures swapped stablecoins on UDPN for the first time.
- HayCoin (HAY) by Hayden Adams traded at $3M per token with a 4.4 supply, after burning 99.99% of the total.
- Binance attracted corporates through Polygon's USDC support.
- DCG cooperated with NYAG for months before facing a lawsuit.
- Astar Network and KDDI formed a Web3 partnership with a signed MoU.
- Parity Technologies laid off 30% of staff to focus on Polkadot's core tech.
- Nym launched a $300M fund targeting Web3 wallets, RPCs, and infrastructure.
- BlockFi exited bankruptcy and asked clients for withdrawal requests, targeting FTX & 3AC for asset recovery.
- Telegram bot Maestro refunded 610 ETH to users following a router exploit.
- Polygon's ZK-based token went live on the Ethereum mainnet.
- Uniswap Foundation sold $43M in UNI tokens in three days.
- Arbitrum integrated Orbit stack with Celestia for data availability.
- CyberConnect token rose 30% after Binance Labs invested.
- Fantom testnets for Sonic Upgrade estimated a 6,700% throughput gain.
- JPMorgan's Coin processed $1B in daily transactions.
- Citadel Securities accused Terraform of bad faith over UST depeg allegations.
- Justin Sun's HTX and associated firms made a $98M profit in Q3 2023.
- Kraken notified customers of upcoming IRS data sharing this November.
- LayerZero got Lido community backlash for integrating a wrapped Lido token without LidoDAO approval.
- 4M LUSD tokens redeemed on Oct 24 cut market cap and raised fees but increased yields for stability pool stakers.
- Floki to launch TokenFi platform targeting the trillion-dollar RWA narrative.
- dYdX Chain's alpha mainnet initiated its V4 transition, distributing USDC fees to validators and stakers via Cosmos x/distribution.
BlackRock's Bitcoin ETF Fuels Market Surge
BlackRock's iBTC Bitcoin ETF has re-entered the market, causing a stir and pushing Bitcoin's price past $34,000. Initially, its listing led to a crypto rally with $323 million in short positions liquidated and Bitcoin's market dominance hitting a 2.5-year high at 54%. Despite regulatory hurdles, like a $2.5 million SEC penalty, the relisting is seen as a milestone for mainstream crypto acceptance.
Galaxy Digital predicts a 74% Bitcoin price increase within a year of ETF approval, potentially reaching a market size of $14.4 trillion. Other analysts foresee Bitcoin prices hitting $42,000, with a 20% intraday price increase upon ETF approval.
FTX's Financial Woes and Legal Troubles
FTX transferred $19M in Solana and Ethereum amid financial and legal turmoil. Alameda Research, tied to FTX, also moved $10M in various cryptocurrencies. FTX needs $1.7B to cover misused customer funds, adding to its woes.
Founder Sam Bankman-Fried faces serious legal charges, with high-profile investors like Anthony Scaramucci predicting a grim outcome. Delaware Bankruptcy Court approved FTX's liquidation, stirring market anxiety. If convicted, Bankman-Fried could face up to 110 years in prison.
Worldcoin's Token Transition and Regulatory Hurdles
Worldcoin is pivoting its reward system for Orb operators from USDC stablecoins to its native WLD tokens. This transition is set to wrap up by November 2023. Financially, Worldcoin has seen its WLD token supply jump from 100 million to about 134 million. Of these, 100 million were loaned to market-makers, but the loan amount has been reduced to 75 million WLDs, freeing up 25 million tokens.
The market reacted with a 5% drop in WLD token price, later stabilizing at a 4% decline. Regulatory concerns have also surfaced, especially regarding Worldcoin's iris-scanning tech, with countries like Kenya suspending its activities. Despite this, Worldcoin remains committed to user privacy and has ambitious plans for a universal basic income system.
UK Cracks Down on Crypto with New Law
The UK is tightening its grip on crypto activities. A new law, the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill, allows authorities to seize and freeze cryptocurrencies used for illegal activities. This law is part of the UK's broader economic crime plan for 2023-2026 and aims to tackle issues like cybercrime, scams, and drug trafficking.
On the regulatory side, the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) reported that new crypto promotion rules have been violated 221 times since their implementation in early October. The FCA is not just targeting sketchy schemes; even legitimate businesses have faced action for not providing adequate risk warnings in their promotions.
US Lawmakers Target Binance and Tether
U.S. lawmakers Cynthia Lummis and French Hill are pressuring the Department of Justice to decide on criminal charges against Binance and Tether for potentially aiding Hamas. These lawmakers are known advocates for crypto regulation. Tether has defended itself, stating there's no evidence of violating any laws.
Meanwhile, Binance's CEO, Changpeng "CZ" Zhao, is facing a financial hit as trading volumes at Binance have plummeted by 36%, erasing $11.9 billion from his fortune. This decline comes amid multiple lawsuits against Binance from regulators like the SEC and CFTC, further complicating the exchange's standing.
Taiwan Introduces Virtual Asset Management Bill
Taiwan's Virtual Asset Management Bill has been introduced to the parliament, aiming to enhance customer protection and industry supervision. The bill proposes common-sense obligations for virtual asset service providers (VASPs), such as segregating customer funds, implementing internal controls, and joining local trade associations.
It doesn't currently require stablecoin issuers to hold a 1:1 reserve ratio or address algorithmic stablecoins. VASPs operating without a license may face fines ranging from $60,000 to $600,000, with existing companies given six months to obtain a license. The bill follows industry guidelines released by the Financial Supervisory Commission in September 2023.
Solana's Growth Strategy Amid Regulatory Caution
Solana is ramping up its game with a startup incubator to attract developers and zero-fee asset transfers from MetaMask. They've teamed up with IoTeX for IoT projects, offering real-time analytics. On the flip side, Marinade Finance, Solana's largest DeFi protocol, has blocked UK users due to regulatory concerns.
The protocol holds $248 million in total value and offers up to 8.15% annual yields. These moves indicate Solana's aggressive growth strategy and its cautious approach to compliance.
Crypto Funding for Hamas: Fact or Fiction?
Both mainstream media and U.S. lawmakers have been pushing the narrative that Hamas is significantly funded through cryptocurrencies, but blockchain forensics firms like Elliptic challenge this. Elliptic states there's "no evidence" to support claims of substantial crypto donations to Hamas. In fact, a pro-Hamas campaign managed to raise only $21,000, of which $9,000 was frozen by Tether.
Lawmakers like Elizabeth Warren have been advocating for crypto regulations based on this incorrect data. This has led to a ripple effect, causing unwarranted calls for a crypto crackdown. The situation, as per CoinDesk, highlights how media and politicians often ignore data to fit their own agendas.
Mastercard's Web3 Ventures with MetaMask and MoonPay
Mastercard is diving deep into the Web3 space, forming strategic partnerships with self-custody wallet firms like MetaMask and Ledger. The aim is to streamline crypto payments and build customer loyalty. They're also exploring new global issuance models using stablecoins and fast chains. On the other side, Mastercard and MoonPay are collaborating to integrate Web3 technologies for enhanced consumer engagement.
This partnership will leverage MoonPay's Web3 tools and aims to improve the security and compliance of crypto transactions. They're also integrating Mastercard's existing tools like "Click to Pay" into MoonPay's payment solutions. The collaborations signify a major shift in traditional finance towards embracing blockchain and crypto technologies.
Top Weekly Altcoin Gainers and Losers
Pepe PEPE (+88.30%)
Mina MINA (+65.06%)
Injective INJ (+57.50%)
THORChain RUNE (+55.83%)
Chainlink LINK (+49.79%)
Maker MKR (-1.74%)
Toncoin TON (-1.21%)
Radix XRD (-0.90%)
NFT Market Map
NFT Market Struggles Despite Crypto Boom
The NFT market is lagging despite a booming crypto sector, according to a Blockworks report. While major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have surged by as much as 22%, the NFT space hasn't seen similar gains. Key metrics show a decline; floor prices for major NFT projects like CryptoPunks and Pudgy Penguins have fallen by 4% and 5% over the past week.
The Nansen NFT-500 index is also down, currently at 308 compared to a yearly high of 1,700. Buyer activity is at a yearly low, but there are some silver linings. Trading volumes seem to have bottomed, with recent data showing over $85 million in NFTs traded. The number of "active projects" has also increased, signaling some life in the market.
Yuga Labs Wins NFT Copyright Lawsuit
In a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by Yuga Labs against Ryder Ripps and Jeremy Cahen, a U.S. District Court judge has ordered them to pay Yuga Labs nearly $1.6 million in damages, along with legal fees. Yuga Labs accused Ripps and Cahen of creating "copycat" NFTs that devalued the Bored Ape Yacht Club collection.
The judge deemed this an exceptional case due to the defendants' use of satire and parody as justifications for using Yuga's marks without consent. This verdict is seen as a win for NFT creators defending their intellectual property.
Avant Arte and CryptoPunks Team Up for Prints
Online art store Avant Arte has partnered with CryptoPunks brand owner Yuga Labs to offer print copies of CryptoPunks for a limited time. The sale, lasting 48 hours, allows CryptoPunk owners to commission a print copy of their digital artwork.
Another collection called "10,000 On-Chain" is available for purchase by anyone. Each print version comes with unique characteristics and a Yuga Labs holographic sticker for authentication. CryptoPunks was one of the first blockchain-based art collections and has a market capitalization of over $782 million.
This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.