Bitcoin Price: US$44,073.32 (+4.96%)
Ethereum Price: US$ 2,293.33 (+2.23%)
A large Ethereum holder, dormant for five years, moved nearly $90 million worth of ETH to the Kraken crypto exchange, potentially signallingan intention to sell or convert tokens. The move involves 39,260 ETH deposited to Kraken, with the address previously receiving 47,260 ETH in 2017. Meanwhile, the total value locked in decentralised finance (DeFi) protocols reached $50 billion, marking a six-month high, driven by the surge in the value of underlying assets and investors seeking yield on their crypto holdings. The DeFi market’s rebound is evident from a $15 billion increase in the total value locked since October 13. Additionally, asset manager BlackRock and crypto investment firm Bitwise filed updated applications for a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), responding to questions from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC is expected to make a decision on spot Bitcoin ETFs by January 5-10, 2024, with Bloomberg analysts estimating a 90% probability of approval.
The recent surge in Bitcoin’s price from $27,000 to over $43,000 is attributed not only to the anticipation of Bitcoin ETF approvals but also to plummeting interest rates. Key bond markets have seen a decline in yields, signalling optimism that central banks might ease monetary policy. The reversal in rate outlook is not only impacting Bitcoin but also lifting assets across the board, including the bond market, stocks, and gold. Additionally, IBM has introduced cryptographic signing technology, the IBM Hyper Protect Offline Signing Orchestrator (OSO), for handling digital assets in cold storage, enhancing security by reducing manual procedures. The new technology is being used by Ripple-owned custody firm Metaco. In another development, Binance’s new CEO, Richard Teng, faced a challenging debut interview, with questions about the company’s governance and compliance systems remaining largely unanswered.
Fresh money is entering the cryptocurrency market as the stablecoin market expands for the first time in over 18 months. Tether (USDT) has reached an all-time high market cap of $89 billion, contributing to the reversal of a sustained downtrend in the stablecoin market. The combined market capitalisation of the largest stablecoins increased by almost $5 billion over the past month to $124 billion, a significant trend reversal since May 2022. This expansion is considered a bullish signal for the overall health of the recent crypto rally. In another development, HashKey, one of the first licensed crypto exchanges in Hong Kong, is set to onboard individual and enterprise market makers to boost liquidity. The move follows a trend of Hong Kong-regulated exchanges expanding their service offerings and partnerships. Additionally, Bitcoin futures open interest on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) is approaching its 2021 all-time high, reaching $5.2 billion, indicating renewed interest in Bitcoin and potentially influencing its recent price surge.
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