Wednesday, 1 May 2024

Market Summary

Market Summary 1 May 2024

Bitcoin Price: US$ 60,672.00 (-5.00%) 
Ethereum Price: US$ 3,014.05 (-6.30%) 

In the midst of a market preference for debt-based, high-yield investments, real-world asset (RWA) protocols have experienced a surge in total value locked (TVL), reaching nearly $8 billion. This growth is mirrored in the rise of tokenised U.S. treasuries and bonds, which have reached a record $1.29 billion, primarily driven by protocols such as Securitize and Ondo. Despite these advancements, Bitcoin miners are facing challenges with falling revenues, yet they show no signs of capitulation. They are left with two options: capitulation or waiting for a rise in Bitcoin price, especially as the expected value of one terahash of hashing power per day has plummeted to an all-time low of $46.55, down 74% from its post-halving peak. However, the Bitcoin decentralised application (DApp) ecosystem remains resilient amidst market correction. Projects like SolvBTC are thriving, accumulating a TVL of $700 million, and Bitcoin layer-2 solution BEVM, which utilises BTC as gas fees, has announced an investment from Chinese Bitcoin mining rig manufacturer Bitmain, indicating a continued faith in the potential of the ecosystem. 

In a significant move, Coinbase, one of the world’s largest BTC exchanges, has integrated the Bitcoin Lightning Network, offering users faster and cheaper Bitcoin transfers. This integration, in partnership with Lightspark, comes despite falling revenues, reflecting Coinbase’s optimism about the continued growth and adoption of Lightning. Meanwhile, Hong Kong spot Bitcoin and Ether exchange-traded funds (ETFs) made a strong debut, attracting over $200 million in total assets. Notably, ChinaAMC’s Bitcoin ETF ranked 6th among 82 ETFs launched in Hong Kong over the past three years. However, these ETFs remain accessible only to Hong Kong’s estimated 6.4 million adult residents, with mainland Chinese investors currently barred from access unless they possess a Hong Kong residence permit. On another front, April marked a record low in crypto losses from hacks and scams, with only $25.7 million lost in attacks, according to a report from blockchain security platform CertiK. Despite this overall decrease, the month witnessed notable hacks and scams, including a major hack on Bitcoin Lightning Network exchange FixedFloat, which resulted in a loss of approximately $3 million. 

Hong Kong-based gaming firm Animoca Brands is making a strategic move into the Bitcoin industry by backing the Opal Foundation, a new Bitcoin ecosystem protocol, with the ambitious goal of becoming the “largest Web3 ecosystem” for gaming, education, and culture built on Bitcoin. This move involves the integration of the Opal Protocol and BLIF token, setting a precedent for all future Bitcoin-based projects from Animoca Brands to partner with the Opal Foundation. Meanwhile, in the Ethereum ecosystem, the restaking protocol Karak has seen its total value locked (TVL) surge by over 25% in the past week to over $440 million, positioning it as a potential contender to EigenLayer’s market share. This comes in the wake of the disappointment surrounding the EigenLayer airdrop, and given Karak’s support for a broader range of assets for restaking, it stands a “good chance” of emerging as the next big restaking protocol. On another front, SBI Group is set to become the first Japanese corporation to utilise XRP Ledger (XRPL) blockchain supply chain solutions, marking a significant milestone as Ripple seeks to drive the adoption of enterprise blockchain solution use cases in Japan. In this endeavour, SBI will collaborate with Ripple and SBI Ripple Asia to develop and introduce supply chain finance solutions in the country, leveraging the tools built on the XRPL. 


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