Friday, 3 May 2024

Market Summary

Market Summary 3 May 2024

Bitcoin Price: US$ 59,060.61 (+1.19%) 
Ethereum Price: US$ 2,986.19 (+0.46%) 

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey’s fintech firm, Block, Inc., is making strategic moves to strengthen its position. The firm plans to convert 10% of its gross profit from Bitcoin products into Bitcoin purchases every month, a testament to its commitment to economic empowerment through Bitcoin. This is noteworthy considering that less than 3% of the company’s resources are dedicated to Bitcoin-related projects, yet Block’s Bitcoin gross profit for Q1 2024 saw a nearly 60% year-on-year increase to $80.1 million. Meanwhile, Terraform Labs (TFL) and co-founder Do Kwon are challenging a proposed $5.3 billion judgment by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). They argue for a substantially different judgment, asserting that the SEC lacks evidence linking their U.S. activities to the losses central to the civil case. Instead, Terraform proposes a $1 million civil penalty, a stark contrast to the SEC’s multibillion-dollar proposal. In a parallel development, blockchain analysis firm Chainalysis has crafted a solution enabling Tether to monitor the secondary market for its stablecoin. This tool will help identify wallets potentially tied to illicit or sanctioned addresses. Despite facing criticism for its alleged role in criminal activities and terrorism financing, Tether remains steadfast in its commitment to establishing transparency and security within the cryptocurrency industry. 

In the wake of potential national security threats posed by cryptocurrency miners in Iran, U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Angus King have issued a warning. They assert that Iran’s use of crypto to evade sanctions and fund terrorist groups directly threatens U.S. national security. Senator Warren, a vocal critic of crypto, is preparing for her re-election in November, where she is likely to compete against Republican candidate and crypto lawyer John Deaton for her Massachusetts Senate seat. Meanwhile, in the crypto exchange landscape, Binance has made significant strides by integrating Bitcoin ARC-20 atomical assets into its native Web3 wallet. This move, which includes offering zero-fee trading on ARC-20 tokens until June 2, 2024, comes amidst concerns about Bitcoin becoming technologically obsolete with the rise of smart contract blockchains such as Ethereum and Solana. However, Bitcoin is rapidly bridging the technological gap through innovations like Ordinals, Inscriptions, Runes, and Atomicals. In related news, Pantera Capital has invested an undisclosed amount in The Open Network (TON), driven by its connection to the Telegram messaging service. Pantera, which manages $5.2 billion of assets across four funds, believes that TON has the potential to become one of the largest crypto networks and recently announced the formation of a new $1 billion fund. 

In April, the Bitcoin layer-2 network Stacks achieved a record high of 122,497 active accounts, reflecting a surge in interest in Bitcoin-native decentralised finance (DeFi) and underscoring the potential of Bitcoin L2 networks like Stacks to facilitate lower transaction costs and additional use cases for the Bitcoin network. However, the recent launch of spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in Hong Kong, which saw $217 million worth of net inflows this week, was insufficient to offset the $298 million worth of net outflows from the 11 U.S. spot Bitcoin ETFs, signalling a shift in investor sentiment. This shift was further evidenced by the debut of the first Hong Kong ETFs, which precipitated a drop in Bitcoin value below the $60,000 mark, hinting at a potential revisit to the $50,000 mark. Despite this sell-off, Bitcoin’s bull market appears to be experiencing a healthy de-leveraging, with funding rates cooling off gradually rather than abruptly, suggesting that derivatives were not the primary driver of the sell-off. Amidst these market dynamics, Synethix founder Kain Warwick announced the impending launch of the on-chain gateway Infinex on May 13. Aimed at reducing barriers to onboarding into DeFi, Infinex offers a more centralised exchange-like interface for users to engage with decentralised applications on various blockchain networks. Despite a security breach in March, Warwick remains confident about the launch and anticipates that Infinex will attract 10,000 genuine users and $50 million in total value locked within the first 30 days. 


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