Bitcoin Flat, Ether Gains in Mixed Crypto Market; Solana recovers, Litecoin leads winners

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Bitcoin traded little and Ether gained in Asia on Monday morning, with prices mixed from most of the other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies. Solana added profits after a slump that followed it being labeled a security by the U.S. financial regulator. Litecoin led winners, still with optimism to be included in token trading on the Wall Street-backed EDX Markets exchange which opened June 20.

Mixed cryptocurrency

Bitcoin added 0.41% to US$30,730.25 in the past 24 hours as of 6:30 a.m. in Hong Kong, according to CoinMarketCap data. After a jump that followed a series of Bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) filings in the last weeks of June, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization has lost direction, rising just 0.61% in the past seven days.

The U.S. regulator that approves ETFs, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), said on Friday it was unimpressed by Bitcoin ETF applications from financial heavyweights like Blackrock and Fidelity Investments, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Ether, the world’s second-largest token by market capitalization, added 1.49% to US$1,954.67. It is up 2.65% over the seven days.

Solana was one of the winners in Asia’s mixed early trading for other top 10 unstable cryptocurrencies by market cap. The token rose 5.48% to US$19.43 for a weekly gain of 14.47%.

Solana is recovering after a series of bearish indicators last week, with Solana-based non-fungible token (NFT) protocol Cardinal saying it was to block, citing “macroeconomic challenges”. Revolut neobank and crypto exchange also reportedly told US users last Wednesday that it will be delisting Solana, along with Cardano and Polygon.

The three tokens were among cryptocurrencies that the SEC named as illegally issued financial securities in its lawsuit filed last month against exchanges Coinbase and Binance.US.

Vitalik Buterin, the creator of Ethereum wrote on Twitter on Friday that the tokens don’t deserve to be targeted. “If ethereum ends up ‘winning’ by all the other blockchains getting kicked off exchanges, that’s not an honorable way to win, and in the long run it’s probably not even a win.”

Litecoin led the winners with an increase of 6.37% in the last 24 hours to US$112.96. The token is up 27.98% in the past seven days.

Created in 2011 as a hard fork to Bitcoin, Litecoin was one of four tokens selected to trade on the EDX Markets exchange, which is backed by Citadel Securities and Fidelity Investments. The other tokens are Bitcoin, Ether and Bitcoin Cash. New Jersey-based EDX opened despite the crackdown on crypto by US regulators.

California-based crypto exchange Kraken was ordered by a US judge on Friday to file information about its users with the Internal Revenue Service in an investigation into underreported tax liabilities. The crypto exchange was fined US$30 million by the SEC in February for its staking services, which the federal agency said was an offering of unregistered securities.

Other crypto movers included Tron, which fell 1.85% to US$0.07572 but gained 3.31% for the week. Binance’s BNB token fell 0.31% to US$247.13 and Cardano’s ADA fell 0.13% to US$0.2905.

Total cryptocurrency market capitalization rose 0.02% to $1.2 trillion, while trading volume fell 7.54% to $27.26 billion, according to CoinMarketCap data.

NFT’s “cheeky weekend”

The indices are proxy measures of the performance of the global NFT market. They are operated by CryptoSlam, a sister company of Forkast.News under the umbrella of Forkast.Labs.

In the non-fungible token (NFT) market, the Forkast 500 NFT index fell 1.49% to 2,910.36 in the 24 hours to 7:30 a.m. in Hong Kong. The index is down 4.59% this week.

Total NFT trading volume fell 9.68% to US$28.3 million, while volume on Ethereum increased 3.12% to US$22.3 million.

“Brutal weekend for NFTs,” said Yehudah Petscher, NFT strategist at Forkast Labs, the parent company of Forkast.News. “It may be easy to still pinpoint Azuki’s Elementals coin as the catalyst, but the lowering of average sale and bottom prices in top collections prior to Elementals coin showed that we were on the cusp of another free fall. “

The Azuki Elementals collection began hitting stores last Tuesday and sold out in 15 minutes, but left collectors disappointed as the latest collection looked almost identical to the original.

Azuki founder Alex Xu, who goes by the nickname Zagabond, met with his community last Thursday to discuss complaints about the coin and Elementals issued a public apology on Twittersaying they “missed the mark” and that the new release diluted the value of the popular collection.

Ethereum-based Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs topped the volume ranking on Cryptoslam with US$3.87 million. Another Ethereum-based collection, The Captainz, came in second with $2.3 million.

Over the weekend, the Memeland team behind The Captainz NFTs, revealed their PFPs or Profile Picture art upgrades for the collection, but received mixed to negative response. “Most of the negative reactions to the art came from people who didn’t know that the art could be upgraded with purchasable properties,” explains Petscher. “Without these properties, the basic characters are almost identical, which caused some confusion in the NFT community.”

US stock futures changed little

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US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen | Getty Images

US stock futures were little changed as of 10:20 a.m. in Hong Kong. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 0.029%, S&P 500 futures fell 0.011%, while Nasdaq Futures added 0.068%.

US stocks rose during regular trading on Friday, the last day of the first half of 2023, but face trading disruptions this week with limited trading hours on Monday and the July 4 bank holiday on Tuesday, when stock markets are closed .

Economic indicators coming this week include US manufacturing activity on Monday and a monthly jobs report on Friday. Tesla Inc.’s Sunday announcement of record-breaking car sales in the second quarter is a positive factor for investors.

Japanese stocks gained on the closing prices of Friday’s rally on Wall Street on Monday, with technology stocks leading gains in Tokyo.

In China, production slowed, but less than expected. The purchasing managers’ indices in Taiwan and South Korea also showed a contraction in production.

On Wednesday, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will travel to China to try to improve communications and the frosty ties between the world’s two largest economies.

Investors are expecting more rate hikes in the US this year after repeated warnings from Fed Chairman Jerome Powell in speeches last week in Europe that inflation is not yet under control.

US interest rates are now between 5% and 5.25%, the highest since 2006. The CME FedWatch Tool predicts an 87.4% chance of a rate hike of 25 basis points at the next Fed meeting on July 26, predicting only a 12.6% chance the Fed will leave rates unchanged.

(Updates to add stock section)


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