Last week’s main event was the meeting of the US Federal Open Monetary Committee (FOMC), which decides on US monetary policy, including interest rates. Last year, FOMC increased interest rates from 0.25% to 4.50% (425 basis points) in order to combat inflation, which reached a 40-year high in 2022. Such a steep interest rate hike was the main trigger of the crypto bear market, as liquidity drained from risky assets.
On February 1, FOMC was less hawkish, announcing only a 0.25% (25 basis points) hike in rates. The crypto market was anticipating this move and reacted positively – the prices for all major crypto assets increased. The price rally started to lose steam over the weekend, resulting in the overall decline in prices and market cap compared to levels as of last Monday.
Market indices and prices:
Fear and greed index has been in the “greed” zone during the past week, fluctuating between 51 and 60, and sticking to 56 as of today. Crypto Volatility Index (CVI) hovered within the 61-63 range, with the highest of 63.5 on February 2, when markets cheered the FOMC’s decision on a modest rate increase. CVI opened today at 61.2. Total market capitalization is $1,548 at press time (09:00 am UTC), which is in line with the cap value as of $1,048 at the start of last week. The bitcoin dominance is 41.5% (09:00 am UTC), a decline from 42.52% 7 days ago.
BTC price as of today (9:00 am UTC) is $22,838.0, down from 23,287.4 a week ago (-1.9%). The BTC price reached its peak on February 2 climbing to a five-month high above $24,000 and has been declining since then. The 7-day VWMA (volume weighted moving average) is currently $22,802.0.
ETH price, in contrast to BTC, has risen by 2.3% in the past seven days and currently stands at $1,630.0 (9:00 am UTC), which is in line with the 7-day VWMA of $1,627.5. On February 2, ETH briefly traded above $1,700 for the first time since September 2022.
The best performing altcoins in the past 7 days were:
AGIX (SingularityNET) price has increased by 155.3%, fueled by a strong interest in AI projects. AGIX is an ERC-20 governance token of the SingularityNET, the world’s leading decentralized AI marketplace, running on the blockchain.
RNDR (Render Token) is up by 50.5%. RNDR is an ERC-20 utility token used by artists on the network to exchange for GPU compute power from GPU providers (node operators). RNDR utilizes a combined manual and automatic proof of work system, or in this case proof of render, in order to verify all art has been successfully rendered prior to payment disbursal and art release. Utilizing the inherent security properties of the Ethereum blockchain, proprietary assets are hashed upon upload and sent to nodes piecemeal for rendering. RNDR price is up on the prior month’s announcements of the Render DAO foundation launch and the passing of a new tokenomics model by the project’s DAO.
GRT (Graph) price has surged 45.0% in the past 7 days. GRT is an ERC-20 token of the Graph network. The token price started to accelerate after Messari, the blockchain analytics firm, published a report praising Graph network achievements in Q4 2022. Graph is a decentralized open-source protocol for collecting, processing, and storing data from blockchain applications for easy information retrieval. GRT is a work token that is locked-up by Indexers, Curators and Delegators. in order to provide indexing and curating services to the network. Active Indexers, Curators and Delegators can also earn income in GRT from the network in proportion to the amount of work they do and their GRT stake.
Top 3 losers of the last week included: APT (-14.2%), XMR (-8.6%) and MINA (-7.4%).
What else happened:
London, Dubai and New York are the top 3 crypto hubs according to the recent rating compiled by Recap. The rating takes into consideration the number of crypto jobs, companies, access to crypto, and other factors. While London is number one in the Recap’s rating of cities, the UK is lagging UAE in terms of Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) deployment. Check out a wonderful infographic from the Atlantic Council: UAE has already tested a pilot of CBDC for cross-border payments with Saudi Arabia and certain Asian countries, while the UK is still researching and the US is just expressing interest. But the UK may catch up soon, since the UK monetary authorities are planning to release an official CBDC implementation roadmap next week.
The accelerating speed of crypto adoption by major governments encourages institutional investments in the crypto space. Ark Investment, a large US-based investment fund run by Cathie Wood, a prominent crypto backer, released its market predictions for 2023 and beyond. According to the report, the BTC price is expected to reach $1 million in the next 10 years.
Alternative investment managers are also catching up in the space. New York-based firm Securitze onboards private equity firms to its blockchain platform, offering them access to retail investors. The interest in the private equity funds is tokenized, so retail investors can buy a share of the fund in the form of a token. Securitze started offering tokenized shares in KKR funds in September 2022 and announced its new offering of Hamilton Lane Equity Opportunities Fund last week.
In the meantime, crypto investors are looking forward to the Ethereum Shanghai upgrade scheduled for March 2023. The upgrade will allow developers to withdraw ETH from the staking pool. About 14% of existing ETH is currently staked, accounting for 16 million tokens valued at $26 billion. Analysts are debating whether the unlocking of the staked ETH will result in a massive influx of ETH to the market and subsequent price drop.
Coming soon to HitBTC:
We are proud to announce the upcoming launch of PLCU (PLC Ultima)!
PLC Ultima (PLCU) is a mass-use crypto tool that aims to provide users with access to global financial infrastructure and instant payments around the world. The project combines the stability of proven business models with the innovative approach of blockchain technology, bridging the gap between the crypto industry and the traditional form of business. PLCU was introduced to the crypto community in December 2021.
The PLC Ultima blockchain is based on the Litecoin blockchain, which is known for its stability, transparency, and high transaction speed. The large-scale infrastructure project is based on minting technology, where users have the opportunity to receive passive income if they have a smartphone and stable internet connection.
PLCU trading in the PLCU/USDT trading pair will start on Tuesday, February 7, at 10:00 am UTC.
We continued working on the MFT – > HiFi swap that was announced last week. We expect the swap to be finalized this week, so stay tuned!
For details, refer to HiFi Tokenomics Lite Paper. As a result of the swap, we will have a new HiFi token that will replace existing MFT. MFT holders will get an equivalent of their MFT holdings in new HiFi tokens.
P.S. If you have not done so yet, please do not forget to download our trading app on Android and iOS.