Bitcoin Price: US$35,399.12 (+1.01%)
Ethereum Price: US$ 1,885.27 (-0.82%)
Bitcoin (BTC) surged amid an expanding altcoin rally and increased risk-on sentiment in traditional markets, propelling the total cryptocurrency market cap to a 16-month high. A sudden spike in Bitcoin’s price from $34,600, attributed to a potential short squeeze in the derivatives markets, saw it trading at $35,600. Altcoins like Solana (SOL), toncoin (TON), and Crypto.com’s Cronos ecosystem token (CRO) gained 5%-10%, while Binance’s BNB, Ripple’s XRP, Cardano’s ADA, and Dogecoin (DOGE) experienced minor pullbacks. Ethereum (ETH) remained steady at around $1,900, with analysts suggesting its price could reach $3,000 due to increased blockchain activity. The total cryptocurrency market capitalisation surpassed $1.31 trillion, driven by a “mini altcoin season” as traders shifted profits from Bitcoin into smaller tokens. The rise in risk appetite in traditional markets and expectations of an upcoming Bitcoin ETF decision also contributed to the positive sentiment in the crypto space. Additionally, Ethereum’s network activity and burning of ETH supply signal improving fundamentals in the crypto market. The Graph, known as the “Google of Web3,” revealed plans to add AI-assisted querying and other features to enhance its data indexing and querying capabilities, marking a significant upgrade for the project since its $50 million fundraising last year.
The acting head of the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Michael Hsu, has expressed enthusiasm for the potential of asset tokenisation to simplify complex settlement processes in financial transactions, emphasising its capacity to streamline the back-office aspects of the financial world. While acknowledging the practical benefits of tokenisation, Hsu remains sceptical about the broader cryptocurrency space, citing ongoing concerns related to fraud and speculative activities. In other news, the past week witnessed a notable slowdown, with $34.7 million raised across nine deals, down significantly from the previous week. The investments included Uniswap DAO’s $12 million allocation to the Ekubo Protocol and AI-driven projects, highlighting the increasing role of artificial intelligence in the crypto landscape. Additionally, a dispute arose between Wintermute and the NEAR Foundation, as Wintermute alleged that NEAR failed to honour an agreement to convert $11 million worth of USN stablecoins to USDT, resulting in potential legal action and highlighting challenges within the crypto sector.
Custodia Bank, founded by Bitcoin advocate Caitlin Long, has launched its Bitcoin custody platform, targeting businesses such as fiduciaries, investment advisers, fund managers, and corporate treasurers. The bank received approval from the Wyoming Division of Banking for the service. Custodia Bank’s platform offers integrated Bitcoin custody and U.S. dollar services, simplifying operations and reducing risks. The platform aims to provide segregated custody accounts and is designed to bridge the gap between digital assets and the U.S. dollar payments system. Additionally, cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is rumoured to be exploring a layer-2 solution, similar to Coinbase’s Base network, to address industry challenges, though the company has not confirmed these plans. Meanwhile, Glassnode, a cryptocurrency intelligence firm, has sold its crypto-focused tax platform, Accointing, to Blockpit, focusing on providing digital asset intelligence solutions for institutional investors and DeFi, in a multimillion-dollar deal. This move allows Glassnode to deepen its presence in the institutional space and expand its product offering into DeFi while strengthening Blockpit’s position as a consolidated crypto tax platform for Europe, particularly in light of upcoming regulations like the Crypto-Asset Reporting Framework and the Directive on Administrative Cooperation.
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