Friday, 28 June 2024

Market Summary

Market Summary 28 June 2024

Bitcoin Price: US$ 61,691.09 (+1.38%) 
Ethereum Price: US$ 3,450.44 (+2.34%) 

The number of Bitcoin ‘wholecoiners’ has impressively remained above 1 million for the last 13 months, despite significant price fluctuations and the complexity that one Bitcoin wallet address doesn’t always represent a single person. This is in the context of the 19.7 million Bitcoin currently in circulation, where 2.48 million are held on major centralised exchanges, and an estimated 3 million are considered “lost forever.” Parallel to this, the potential for a spot Solana exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the United States is being explored, which, according to Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas, may only be possible with a change in the administration and the head of its securities regulator. Despite some debate over the potential success of a Solana ETF, VanEck has taken the initiative to file for one, contributing to the more than $1 billion worth of Solana exchange-traded products already offered worldwide. In a significant move, Coinbase and Stripe have formed a partnership to bring fiat-to-crypto on-ramps and off-ramps for customers of both platforms, introducing support for USD Coin on Base as part of Stripe’s crypto payouts. This development occurs as Coinbase takes a stand against both the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Trust and Deposit Corporation (FDIC), filing lawsuits alleging that these government agencies failed to provide necessary materials under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). 

S&P Global Ratings has recently become a part of the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s Project Guardian, a two-year-old initiative that delves into the potential of asset tokenisation in improving the liquidity and efficiency of financial markets. As part of this project, which was initiated by the MAS in May 2022, institutions have been conducting foreign exchange and bond transactions against liquidity pools of tokenised bonds and currencies, with JPMorgan notably executing a live cross-border transaction using tokenised Singapore dollars and Japanese yen on the Polygon blockchain. Amidst these developments, on June 27, crypto exchange Coinbase refuted any knowledge of a breach of its customers’ data in relation to the Au10tix compliance platform, following a report that suggested Au10tix employee credentials had been leaked on Telegram. Au10tix, an identity verification platform utilised by various platforms, acknowledged that an employee credential was leaked, potentially making personally identifiable information accessible, but assured that there was no evidence of data exploitation. In parallel, the Oracle network Chainlink has introduced its Data Streams product on the Avalanche network, with GMX, a decentralised perpetual futures trading platform, leveraging the real-world market data provided by Data Streams to power its perpetual futures protocol. Chainlink, continuing to expand its products across the blockchain landscape, announced a partnership with Arta TechFin, a Hong Kong-based asset management firm, earlier in 2024 to tokenise real estate, a move that could significantly transform the buying and selling of property, reduce transaction costs, and unlock liquidity encumbered in these hard assets. 

VanEck, a pioneer in issuing spot Bitcoin ETFs in the U.S., has filed for a new Solana ETF. This move, aimed at capitalising on Solana’s decentralised nature, high utility, and economic feasibility, comes on the heels of the U.S. SEC’s approval of the launch of spot Ether ETFs, thereby ending debates about the status of ETH cryptocurrency and recognising it as a commodity rather than a security. Meanwhile, the European Union is gearing up to implement the first set of new regulations under the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) Regulation. This marks a significant transformation in the cryptocurrency landscape within the EU, with the gradual implementation of regulations aiming to institute uniform market rules for crypto assets, thereby enhancing consumer protection measures and providing a safer environment for investors. In a parallel development, asset manager State Street Global Advisors has partnered with crypto investment firm Galaxy Digital to launch new ETFs that provide exposure to digital assets beyond spot Bitcoin ETFs. This partnership aims to cater to the surging institutional and retail interest in digital assets, with State Street proposing several ETFs, including the SPDR Galaxy Digital Asset Ecosystem ETF, which would invest in publicly traded digital asset firms. 


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