Friday, 28 July 2023

Market Summary

Market Summary 28 July 2023

Bitcoin Price: US$ 29,222.78 (-0.44%)
Ethereum Price: US$ 1,861.28  (-0.57%)  


During a historic week in the United States, the House Financial Services Committee made significant progress in advancing landmark crypto bills. Among them, the Clarity for Payment Stablecoins Act and the Keep Your Coins Act were passed, aiming to regulate stablecoin issuers and promote self-custody of crypto assets in personal wallets. Coinbase’s chief policy officer, Faryar Shirzad, hailed this as a momentous occasion for crypto regulation. Additionally, the Committee also passed the Financial Innovation and Technology (FIT) for the 21st Century Act and the Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act, which establish guidelines for crypto firms’ registration and offer clarity for projects like miners and decentralised finance (DeFi) platforms. In a related development, Grayscale, a crypto fund manager, has urged the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to approve all proposed spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) simultaneously, arguing for a fair and orderly decision without favoring any specific ETF. However, the SEC has been cautious and requires more surveillance sharing agreements (SSAs) between ETF providers and Coinbase to monitor market activities properly. Meanwhile, Sequoia Capital, a prominent venture capital firm, downsized its cryptocurrency fund significantly from $585 million to $200 million due to a liquidity crunch and a shift towards supporting smaller crypto startups, reflecting the recent industry turmoil. The firm aims to lower the capital threshold to provide opportunities for more investors to participate in its fund offerings, as it redirects its focus towards early-stage ventures while returning substantial amounts to its limited partners in recent years.

The MakerDAO community has approved a proposal to increase the interest rate on stablecoin Dai, introducing the Enhanced Dai Savings Rate (EDSR), which temporarily raises yields for tokenholders to as high as 8%. The move aims to boost adoption of DAI amid a global slump in stablecoin market capitalisation. Former Federal Reserve Board analyst Brendan Malone, representing technology investment firm Paradigm, argues in a policy paper that stablecoins pose lower risks to the financial system compared to bank deposits. Stablecoins are backed by short-dated Treasurys and serve as means of payment, rather than investment options like money market funds. Meanwhile, cryptocurrency lending platform Nexo has joined the Association of Certified Sanctions Specialists (ACSS) to bolster its compliance efforts in light of increasing regulatory scrutiny in the Web3 ecosystem. Nexo will require its compliance staff to be ACSS certified, demonstrating their expertise in sanctions-related matters across various industries.

In the second quarter of 2023, the smart contracts industry demonstrated resilience amid market challenges, as evidenced by increased deployment of verified smart contracts across platforms like BNB Chain, Ethereum, Polygon, Fantom, Avalanche, Arbitrum, and Optimism. This rise in smart contracts highlights the growing demand for secure and scalable blockchain solutions despite lower investments from venture capital firms in the crypto space. Additionally, Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia are strengthening financial collaboration, with a bilateral meeting leading to a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that fosters joint discussions on financial innovation, including tokenisation and payment infrastructure. Meanwhile, global investment giant BlackRock is expanding its reach in India through a joint venture with Jio Financial Services, aiming to offer “tech-enabled” and innovative investment solutions to Indian investors through a digital-first approach.




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