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Weekly Crypto Wrap: 27th June 2024

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Rachael Lucas
Weekly Crypto Wrap: 27th June 2024

TLDR

  • Final week to win your share of $5,000 in Bitcoin.
  • BTC Markets sponsors Australian heptathlete Tori West.
  • Australian inflation hits 4%, Bitcoin holds above $60k amid market volatility.
  • Bitcoin and Ethereum remain resilient despite recent volatility.
  • Mt. Gox Bitcoin redemption fears overblown; analysts predict less selling pressure.
  • VanEck files form 8-a for Ethereum ETF: approval timeline sparks speculation.

BTC Markets announcements

BTC Markets sponsors Australian heptathlete Tori West.

Last week, we announced an exciting sponsorship of Australian heptathlete Tori West, supporting her "Path to Paris" as she aims to represent Australia in the 2024 Olympic Games.

Tori, ranked 1st in Oceania and 24th globally, competes in the heptathlon, which includes seven track and field events. She competed in Germany last week, seeking to solidify her dream of representing Australia at the Olympic games. We are proud to support her dedication and excellence.

Read the full announcement here.

Stay tuned for updates on Tori's journey and follow us on social media for more exciting news.

It's the final week to win your share of $5,000 in Bitcoin in our giveaway!

$5000 Bitcoin Giveaway

This month, BTC Markets has reached an incredible milestone - 11 years in the crypto market! To celebrate we're giving away AU$5,000 worth of Bitcoin to 10 lucky winners!

It’s easy to enter:

  • Follow us on X (Twitter).
  • Retweet the giveaway post.
  • Comment ‘#BTCMarkets is celebrating 11 years in #crypto.’

You will automatically go in the running to win! T&Cs apply. Enter now!

This journey has been nothing short of extraordinary, and it’s all thanks to you, our loyal clients. Your unwavering trust and support have been the cornerstone of our success.

From our humble beginnings as a startup, we’ve grown into a powerhouse in the Australian cryptocurrency landscape. We’re honoured to have you as a vital part of our journey and are excited to continue being a part of yours.

BTC markets partners with Syla for crypto tax reporting solution.

BTC Markets has partnered with Syla to simplify cryptocurrency tax reporting for Australian users. This collaboration integrates Syla's advanced tax reporting solutions, providing a seamless and localised approach to managing crypto taxes.

The partnership addresses the challenge of accurately declaring and managing taxes on digital assets, benefiting both new and seasoned investors.

Click here to view the discount codes.

BTC Markets x Ticker News ‘Crypto Corner’ featuring DigitalX.

In this episode, Caroline Bowler interviews Lisa Wade, the CEO of DigitalX to exploe real-world asset tokenisation. Learn about the transformative power of fractionalised assets spanning various classes like cash, properties, commodities, venture capital, private debts, and bonds.

Watch on YouTube or Ticker News.

OTC Desk: Unlocking global liquidity, tighter spreads, and T+0 settlements.

At BTC Markets, our OTC desk is your dedicated partner in achieving a variety of financial objectives. We specialise in helping clients reposition their SMSF holdings, assisting them through the complexities of EOFY, and facilitating the release of additional capital during the tax season. Our commitment to personalised service means that we work closely with businesses engaged in crypto payments, ensuring they optimise the value of their frequent conversions to AUD.

Whether you're a seasoned trader looking for a discreet and highly efficient means to execute substantial positions, or a business seeking a streamlined solution to manage your crypto portfolio, our OTC team is here to empower you. With access to global liquidity, tighter spreads, and T+0 settlements, we offer a comprehensive range of services tailored to meet your unique needs.

Schedule a call with our team of expert traders today.

State of crypto

  • Australian inflation hits 4%, Bitcoin holds above $60k amid market volatility.
  • Bitcoin and Ethereum remain resilient despite recent volatility.
  • Mt. Gox Bitcoin redemption fears overblown as analysts predict less selling pressure.
  • German authorities spark volatility: selling seized Bitcoin amid market turbulence.
  • Anonymous donor pays $500,000 in Bitcoin for Julian Assange’s freedom flight.
  • VanEck files form 8-a for Ethereum ETF: approval timeline sparks speculation.
  • Memecoins and real-world assets lead crypto profits in 2024.

Australian inflation hits 4%, Bitcoin holds above $60k amid market volatility.

Inflation in Australia has increased to 4%, sparking concerns that interest rates may rise again. This could prompt central banks to take action to control economic overheating, potentially impacting various markets, including risk on assets like cryptocurrencies.

Over June, Bitcoin’s price retraced over 9% after reaching an all-time high of US$73,777 in March. The recent negative price action was influenced by hawkish tones from the U.S. Federal Reserve and crypto-specific factors. Grayscale’s Zach Pandl highlighted three key factors: outflows from spot Bitcoin ETFs, selling by the German government, and expected selling from Mt. Gox creditors.

Spot Bitcoin ETF Total Net Flows

Source: TheBlock.co

Bitcoin and Ethereum remain resilient despite recent volatility.

Currently, Bitcoin has stabilised above US$60,000 after briefly dipping to US$58,400 during early trading on Tuesday. Despite recent volatility, Bitcoin remains resilient. Technical traders are unsure if the downtrend is over, but the recent bounce has sparked optimism. Concerns about sustainability persist as market participants watch for further developments.

Bitcoin (BTC) experienced a decline of 5.20% over the past week, with a significant drop on Monday, losing up to 8% before partially recovering. It is currently trading at US$60,800, representing a weekly decrease of 3.76%.

Ethereum (ETH) declined by 5.61% over the last trading week. However, it showed some resilience with a modest 1.37% loss after retesting lows of US$3,240. ETH is currently trading around US$3,369.

The total cryptocurrency market cap fell by 5.63% in the last trading week and has decreased by an additional 2.18% this week. The market tested lows of US$2.114 trillion before a bullish reversal pushed the market cap back above the US$2.2 trillion mark.

Crypto investment funds experienced heavy outflows for the second consecutive week, with US$584 million withdrawn last week, totalling US$1.2 billion over two weeks. This follows a record US$2 billion inflow in May. Increased selling pressures from large Bitcoin holders and historically low trading volumes could exacerbate volatility. However, potential catalysts, such as the approval of spot Ethereum ETFs, may positively impact the market.

Mt. Gox Bitcoin redemption fears overblown as analysts predict less selling pressure.

Traders believe concerns over the Mt. Gox Bitcoin redemptions are exaggerated. The defunct exchange is set to distribute US$10 billion in BTC starting in July, but analysts suggest the selling pressure may be less than feared. Galaxy Research indicates many creditors will likely hold onto their BTC due to their low-cost basis, reducing immediate selloffs.

Of the 141,000 BTC for distribution, 65,000 BTC will go to individual creditors and 30,000 BTC to claims funds. The belief is that most distributed BTC will not be sold off immediately with many in the crypto community cautiously optimistic, believing long-term investors will mitigate the market impact, stabilising Bitcoin's price in the long run.

German authorities spark volatility: selling seized Bitcoin amid market turbulence.

German authorities are actively selling seized Bitcoin, putting pressure on the market. Following a US$170 million sell-off, bringing the total to US$195 million within 24 hours, the Federal Criminal Police Office transferred an additional 900 BTC, contributing to ongoing volatility.

According to on-chain analysis by Arkham, 400 BTC (worth approximately US$25 million) was moved to Coinbase and Kraken, while another 500 BTC (valued at over US$30 million) went to an unknown address. German authorities currently hold 46,359 BTC, valued at US$2.8 billion.

The ongoing liquidation, combined with outflows from spot Bitcoin ETFs, has contributed to the price decline. Bitrue’s Chief Strategy Officer suggests further sales may soften BTC prices. Liquidations topped US$300 million on Monday, impacting long positions and adding uncertainty as more sales loom.

Anonymous donor pays $500,000 in Bitcoin for Julian Assange’s freedom flight.

An anonymous Bitcoin donor has generously paid over US$500,000 in BTC to cover WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's flight expenses back to Australia. Assange is now a free man after pleading guilty in a US court under a deal ending his 14-year legal battle.

Assange was released from prison in the UK on June 24th and flew to the US territory of Saipan to enter his plea. He had been fighting extradition to the US on espionage charges related to WikiLeaks' publication of classified documents. On June 26th, Assange arrived back in his native country, Australia and embraced family members in Canberra.

Assange has been a pioneer for Bitcoin and WikiLeaks since its inception, even receiving donations in BTC as early as 2010 when the cryptocurrency was relatively unknown. To cover the US$ 520,000 cost of his private charter flight arranged by the Australian government, Assange's wife issued an urgent appeal for donations, providing a Bitcoin address for contributions.

Remarkably, a single Bitcoin donor sent over 8 BTC, worth nearly US$500,000, to the address, covering the entire debt and allowing Assange to return home without financial burden. The identity of the anonymous donor remains unknown.

VanEck files form 8-a for Ethereum ETF: approval timeline sparks speculation.

Investment manager VanEck has taken a significant step toward launching its spot Ethereum (ETH) exchange-traded fund (ETF) by filing form 8-A with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This move has sparked speculation about the ETF’s potential approval timeline. Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas suggests that, based on historical patterns, the Ethereum ETF could be available for trading as early as July 2, 2024.

However, SEC Chair Gary Gensler has expressed a more cautious outlook, indicating that listing Ethereum ETFs on stock exchanges might take months and could extend until September 2024. Despite differing views, the approval and potential launch of the Ether ETF reflecting evolving regulations and the growing influence of the crypto on traditional finance.

Memecoins and real-world assets lead crypto profits in 2024.

In the first half of 2024, Memecoins have surged by a staggering 1,834% since the year began, partly driven by the Solana network’s minting of 541,000 new token projects. Celebrities and influencers launching memecoins on Solana have contributed to this growth.

Real-world asset tokenisation is the second most profitable sector, with a 214% return. Institutional investors and banks view it as the next frontier for digital assets. Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI) blockchain projects have returned 72%, leveraging AI to enhance blockchain functionality. Decentralised physical infrastructure networks (DePINs) focus on building infrastructure using blockchain technology and have provided a solid 59% return.

The weekly crypto close on Tradingview

The crypto market continued its decline, with all major cryptocurrencies closing in the red for the week.

Last week, Ripple (XRP), Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), and Cardano (ADA) all experienced single-digit declines.

Chainlink (LINK), Solana (SOL), and Avalanche (AVAX) suffered larger losses, declining by 12.76%, 14.93%, and 16.54%, respectively.

Overall, the total crypto market capitalisation lost 5.63% on the week, closing at a valuation of US$2.251 trillion.

Weekly crypto close

The weekly trading stats as of Monday, June 24th at 10:00 am AEST, based on data from Tradingview in USD.

Year-to-date in the crypto space from TradingView

The year-to-date performance summary for selected cryptocurrencies is as follows:

  • Ethereum (ETH) leads the pack with an impressive gain of 48.14%.
  • Bitcoin (BTC) follows closely with a 43.85% increase.
  • Solana (SOL) not far behind, holding onto a 34.33% gain.
Year to date

Year-to-date performance as of Thursday, June 27th at 11:20 am AEST approximately. Based on data from Tradingview in USD.

Crypto Fear& Greed Index

Fear and greed index

Source: alternative.me

The week ahead: economic events

June 27th: United States Durable Goods Orders and GDP Growth Rate.

June 28th: France Inflation Rate. Italy Inflation Rate. United States Core PCE Price Index MoM, Personal Income and Personal Spending.

June 30th: China NBS Manufacturing PMI.

July 1st: China Caixin Manufacturing PMI. Japan Consumer Confidence. Germany Inflation Rate.

July 2nd: United States ISM Manufacturing PMI and Fed Funds Interest Rate. Australia Interest Rate. Euro Area Inflation Rate.

July 3rd: United States Job Openings. Japan Business Confidence. Canada Balance of Trade.

July 4th: United States ISM Services PMI and Fed Funds Interest Rate. Australia Balance of Trade. UK General Election.

Source: trading economics

Market reflections

Overview

Inflation in Australia surged to 4% in June, the highest rate since 2023, while consumer confidence saw a modest rebound despite economic uncertainties. The manufacturing sector faced significant challenges with a sharp decline in PMI, and growth in the services sector slowed, softening business activity expansion. In the US, housing starts and building permits plummeted to four-year lows in May. Japan's inflation rate accelerated to 2.8%, reaching its highest since February. Germany's economic outlook grew more uncertain as key indicators declined in June. The Bank of England maintained its interest rate amid mixed economic signals, despite a surge in UK retail sales. Meanwhile, Canada's inflation rate rose to 2.9% in May, defying market expectations.

Australia

  • Inflation surges to 4% in Australia: highest rate since 2023.
  • Consumer confidence rebounds modestly amid economic uncertainties.
  • Manufacturing sector faces challenges: sharp decline in PMI.
  • Services sector growth slows, softening expansion in business activity.

In the first half of 2024, Australia's monthly Consumer Price Index (CPI) surged beyond expectations, reaching a year-on-year increase of 4.0%. This rate, the highest since November 2023, has significant implications for the economy.

Escalating fuel costs have contributed significantly to the overall rise in inflation. As global energy markets experience volatility, consumers are feeling the impact at the pump, affecting their purchasing power and household budgets.

The Australian property market remains robust, with housing prices continuing to climb. While this is good news for homeowners and investors, it also adds to the overall cost of living, impacting affordability and inflation metrics.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) closely monitors inflation trends. The current rate exceeds the RBA's target range of 2-3%, prompting discussions about potential policy responses.

Additionally, consumer confidence saw a modest rebound, with the Westpac-Melbourne Institute Consumer Sentiment index rising to 83.6 in June 2024. While this improvement is encouraging, it's essential to note that consumer confidence remains below the neutral 100 mark. Households continue to grapple with uncertainties related to inflation, interest rates, and overall economic stability.

Global

  • US housing starts and building permits plummet to four-year lows in May.
  • Japan's inflation rate accelerates to 2.8% in May, highest since February.
  • Germany faces increasing economic uncertainty as key indicators decline in June.
  • Bank of England maintains interest rate amid mixed economic signals, as retail sales surge.
  • Canada's inflation rate rises to 2.9% in May, defying market expectations.

US housing starts and building permits plummet to four-year lows in May.

In May, US housing starts and building permits fell sharply to their lowest levels since mid-2020v. Housing starts decreased by 5.5% to an annualised rate of 1.277 million, missing the consensus forecast of 1.370 million, primarily due to rising mortgage rates affecting demand. Building permits dropped by 3.8% to 1.386 million, contrary to expectations of a rise to 1.450 million.

Nancy Vanden Houten of Oxford Economics indicated that weak starts and building permits, along with declining homebuilder sentiment, suggest continued softness in the near term, posing downside risks to residential investment and GDP forecasts for Q2. However, she anticipates that recent mortgage rate declines and potential future Fed rate cuts could lead to a modest recovery in housing starts later in the year.

Japan's inflation rate accelerates to 2.8% in May, highest since February.

Japan's annual inflation rate rose to 2.8% in May from 2.5% in April, the highest since February. Core inflation also increased to 2.5%, slightly below market forecasts of 2.6%. Monthly, the CPI grew by 0.5%, the largest rise since last October.

The inflation uptick, driven by a 14.7% increase in electricity costs, supports the argument for a potential Bank of Japan interest rate hike. Consumer prices rose 2.5% year-on-year, maintaining or exceeding the central bank's 2% target for the 26th consecutive month, indicating sustained inflationary pressures.

Germany faces increasing economic uncertainty, as key indicators decline in June.

Germany's economic outlook is increasingly uncertain as several key indicators show declines. The HCOB Germany Manufacturing PMI fell in June, pointing to a larger contraction in factory activity, with significant drops in new orders and export sales, and continued employment shrinkage.

Meanwhile, the Ifo Business Climate indicator also weakened, reflecting deteriorating sentiment among companies, particularly in manufacturing and trade, though services showed some positivity.

Compounding these issues, the GfK Consumer Climate Indicator dropped to -21.8, missing forecasts and highlighting consumer uncertainty driven by higher inflation. Rolf Bürkl emphasises the need for continued inflation control, clear government budget prospects, and sustained real income growth to improve consumer sentiment. This underscores the challenges policymakers face in stabilising the economy.

Bank of England maintains interest rate amid mixed economic signals, as retail sales surge in May.

The Bank of England maintained the Bank Rate at 5.25% during its June meeting, with two members advocating for a decrease to 5%. Despite inflation returning to the 2% target due to moderating expectations and declining energy prices, GDP growth has exceeded forecasts while underlying economic surveys indicate a slower pace. The Monetary Policy Committee noted a looser labour market and is committed to maintaining restrictive policy until inflation risks diminish sustainably.

Meanwhile, retail sales rebounded significantly in May, surging by 2.9% month-over-month, the biggest increase in four months, following a decline in April. Year-on-year, retail sales increased by 1.3%, with notable growth in non-food store sales.

Canada's inflation rate rises to 2.9% in May, defying market expectations.

The annual inflation rate in Canada increased to 2.9% in May, up from the three-year low of 2.7% in the previous month, contrasting with market expectations of a slowdown to 2.6%.

This rise aligns with the Bank of Canada's forecasts that inflation would remain near 3% in the first half of the year, challenging earlier expectations that the central bank would continue loosening monetary policy.

Crypto news

Lightspark and Nubank bring Bitcoin Lightning to Latin America.

Brazilian neobank Nubank has teamed up with payments platform Lightspark to introduce the Bitcoin Lightning Network to its 100 million customers in Latin America. This collaboration will also implement the Universal Money Address standard, offering users an email-like address for money transfers.

Nubank aims to enhance blockchain-based transfers for its customers with faster speeds and lower costs, according to Thomaz Fortes, Nubank Cripto’s executive director.

The integration with Nubank is viewed as a significant milestone by Lightspark, expected to significantly boost network usage. Nubank, supported by Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway, already facilitates trading in 14 cryptocurrencies and partnered with Circle to expand USD Coin USDC access in November.

In May 2022, Nubank launched its crypto services and announced plans to allocate 1% of its net assets to Bitcoin. The bank serves approximately 92 million customers in Brazil, with the remaining 8 million primarily in Mexico and Colombia.

Trade BTC/AUD on BTC Markets.

Bitcoin and Ethereum transaction fees hit new lows.

Bitcoin and Ether transaction fees have recently reached their lowest levels in months amidst a turbulent week for the crypto market in 2024. On June 23, the average Bitcoin fee dropped to US$1.93, the lowest since October 2023, signalling decreased network activity and competition.

Ethereum's gas fees have dropped significantly, nearing historic lows with prices as low as 1 gwei, the lowest in years. Currently, the gas fee on the Ethereum network is around 4.5 gwei. This reduction is attributed to increased usage of Ethereum's layer-2 networks following the March Dencun upgrade.

Since the upgrade, average gas prices have decreased by approximately 92%. Layer-2 networks reportedly gained US$950,000 in the past week alone, reflecting the migration of activity away from Ethereum's base layer.

Trade ETH/AUD on BTC Markets.

3iQ files new Solana ETP in Canada.

3iQ, a digital asset manager, has filed for a Solana exchange-traded product (ETP) in Canada named QSOL, aiming for listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSE). If approved, QSOL would be North America's first Solana ETP, offering investors exposure to SOL's price movements and potential staking yields. The product is designed to provide shareholders with staking rewards from the Solana network, estimated at 6-8%.

Coinbase Custody and Tetra Trust will act as custodians, with Coinbase Custody offering exclusive institutional staking infrastructure for the Solana fund. This initiative follows Canada's previous approvals of spot Bitcoin and Ethereum ETFs, positioning Canada as an early adopter in cryptocurrency ETF offerings compared to the US.

Over US$1 billion in Solana ETPs are available globally, including the 21Shares Solana Staking ETP and the ETC Group Physical Solana product in Europe.

Buy SOL/AUD on BTC Markets.

Regulation roundup

Hong Kong showcases crypto and web3 expertise in Toronto.

At Collision 2024 in Toronto, the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Toronto (Toronto ETO), Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK), and StartmeupHK (SMUHK) promoted Hong Kong as a hub for Canadian crypto and Web3 startups.

Emily Mo, director of Toronto ETO, highlighted Hong Kong's lower taxes, supportive regulations, and collaboration opportunities for pre-commercial tech companies. She noted trends in fintech, health tech, green tech, and property tech in Hong Kong and Asia.

Canada and Hong Kong have had a double tax agreement for over a decade, preventing double taxation and fiscal evasion on personal and corporate income. Canadian businesses in Hong Kong can receive both public and private funding.

Recently, Hong Kong Legislative Council member Johnny Ng Kit-Chong announced the formation of the Subcommittee on Web3 and Virtual Asset Development. This subcommittee aims to promote Web3 and digital assets by seeking feedback on technical, legal, and regulatory frameworks to establish clear and robust regulations for Web3 development.

In May, Hong Kong mandated the closure of all unlicensed crypto exchanges. While over 20 exchanges initially applied for a license, most withdrew after failing to meet the regulatory requirements.

Gate.HK, a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange, announced plans to relaunch after updating its platform to meet Hong Kong's regulatory requirements, including Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing measures. Other exchanges that withdrew their license applications include major global players like OKX, Huobi HK, and Bybit.

Compliance conversations

The never-ending battle against smishing and phishing.

In the ongoing fight against scams, it's essential to discuss smishing and phishing, shed light on their unique characteristics, and provide you with defensive strategies to protect yourself against these persistent dangers.

Understanding the differences between smishing and phishing.

Smishing and phishing are both methods employed by cybercriminals to trick individuals into revealing personal information or financial data. Let's differentiate between the two:

Smishing: smishing is a combination of "SMS" and "phishing." It is a form of cyberattack conducted through text messages. Scammers send fraudulent texts with malicious links or prompts to compromise sensitive information, such as passwords or personal details.

Phishing: phishing is a broader term that encompasses various tactics, not limited to text messages. It involves the use of fraudulent emails, websites, or messages to trick individuals into sharing sensitive data, like login credentials, credit card information, or personal identification.

Read more about smishing and phishing here.

The ASIC provides a checklist of common scams and ways to avoid them. To learn more, visit ASIC’s website.

Discover more on our ‘Compliance conversation’ blog page, where we share the latest updates on safeguarding against scams and protecting your assets. Stay informed and stay protected!

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Disclaimer: The information provided on this page is issued by BTC Markets Pty Ltd (BTC Markets, we, us, our). The information is general only and is not intended to constitute an opinion or recommendation with respect to its contents. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Any reference to past performance is intended to be for general illustrative purposes only. The information cannot be relied upon for any purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice.

The information does not purport to be complete, accurate or contain all of the information that a person may require to make a decision. It may also contain forward looking statements, which are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors. We recommend you obtain professional advice before making any decision with respect to the matters discussed in this document. To the maximum extent permitted by law, BTC Markets will have no liability for any loss or liability of any kind: (i) arising in respect of the information contained (or not contained) on this page; or (ii) arising from a person relying on any information or statement contained on this page. The information provided is only intended for recipients in Australia. This information cannot be reproduced without our prior written permission.

Weekly prices are accurate as of 10:00 AM AEST on 24/06/2024.

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