Bitcoin crossed US$29,700 early Wednesday in Asia. Ether also rose, following the top 10 cryptocurrencies excluding stablecoins. Solana led with a 5% increase. PayPal’s stablecoin tethered to the dollar on Monday boosted cryptocurrency prices. After China’s GDP figures disappointed, global government bond yields fell sharply.
Trading activity lifted the Forkast 500 NFT index. As Moody’s downgraded many mid-sized U.S. banks, U.S. stock futures fell.
The Bitcoin increase of 2.02% to US$29,764.75 at 07:50 a.m. in Hong Kong. It climbed 0.41% this week, briefly crossing the US$30,000 resistance level on Wednesday.
Ether rose 1.61% to US$1,855.88 after falling 0.82% the week before. Other top 10 cryptocurrencies, excluding stablecoins, rose, led by Solana’s SOL. SOL rose 4.93% to US$24.19 and 1.07% weekly.
PayPal’s stablecoin, PayPal USD (PYUSD), launched Monday, boosting the crypto market. This stablecoin lets U.S. users move funds to compatible external wallets, make transactions, and buy foreign currencies.
Due to PayPal’s stature and global reach, Wilshire Phoenix co-founder and managing partner William Cai stressed the importance of PayPal’s stablecoin debut. This shows institutional trust in the bitcoin market’s long-term viability, Cai said.
He also noted the relevance of stablecoins in enabling crypto market activities, saying that an increase in stablecoin market cap might correlate with a major spike in cryptocurrency values.
Greta Yuan, Head of Research at Hong Kong-based digital asset exchange VDX, noted that while this isn’t the first time major banks have entered the stablecoin space, past efforts faced considerable regulatory obstacles.
Yuan noted that recent advances in a plan to establish a government regulatory framework for stablecoins, along with PayPal’s considerable payment sector expertise, might help PayPal flourish.
Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood told Bloomberg on Tuesday about her hopes. She projected that the SEC would approve numerous spot-Bitcoin ETFs at once.
This has led to anticipation that the approval of ETF proposals from BlackRock, Fidelity Investments, and Wisdom Tree could lead to significant institutional investment in digital assets.
During a conference call on Tuesday, Galaxy Capital CEO Mike Novogratz said he believed the SEC’s approval of a Bitcoin ETF was inevitable. After these approvals, issuers would fiercely battle for market share.
This sentiment may have helped Bitcoin’s overnight 3-4% gain, according to Matrixport’s Head of Research & Strategy Markus Thielen. Thielen noted that Bitcoin surges during U.S. trading hours but retreats during Asian trading hours. He stressed that Bitcoin remained in a trading range, and SEC clearance might boost prices.
Cryptocurrency market capitalization rose 1.71% to US$1.18 trillion in 24 hours. Trading volume jumped 9.37% to US$36 billion.
NFTs need some pep in their step.
The indexes reflect the global NFT market. CryptoSlam, a Forkast.Labs subsidiary company, manages these indices.
The key Forkast 500 NFT index rose 0.14% to 2,483.18 at 09:50 a.m. in Hong Kong. The weekly drop was 0.90%. Forkast’s Ethereum NFT index rose while Solana, Polygon, and Cardano fell.
According to CryptoSlam data, NFT trading volume increased 64.03% to US$20.4 million in 24 hours. Trading volumes grew on Ethereum, Solana, Polygon, and Cardano blockchains but decreased on Bitcoin.
Forkast Labs NFT strategist Yehudah Petscher said, “We’re seeing positive movement once again, and traders are feeling a renewed sense of enthusiasm.”
We’re seeing inexpensive, high-trading NFTs prosper in this market. DMarket, Gods Unchained, Sorare, and DraftKings are game marketplaces with low prices and many traders. “NFTs are heading this way,” Petscher said.
The DraftKings Polygon-themed NFT collection had the biggest 24-hour sales volume. It rose 26.23% to US$4.12 million, accounting for 85% of Polygon network NFT trading activity. DraftKings NFT games dominate this collection.
Forkast Labs’ Petscher said PayPal’s stablecoin launch is timely and beneficial for the NFT market. The worldwide payment giant’s reach might bring non-cryptocurrency users to NFTs. Petscher explained on YouTube that PayPal’s stablecoins might be used to buy Starbucks-themed NFTs on OpenSea.
“This is an important step for cryptocurrency and NFTs,” he said. It represents growth and creativity.”
Meanwhile, NFTs are seeing growing interest in the art space.
Bridgeman Images, a global image licensing provider, has partnered with U.K. NFT platform ElmonX. “Salvator Mundi,” a Leonardo da Vinci painting, will inspire their NFT collectibles. This picture sold for $450.3 million at Christie’s in 2017.
“Kingdom of the Laughing Man,” a series of NFTs inspired by Chinese artist Yue Minjun, has also been released. LiveArt NFT launched these NFTs. The collection has sold over $978,000 in 24 hours, ranking third on Crypto Slam. Just behind the renowned Bored Ape Yacht Club collection.
U.S. equities drop on bank downgrades, China records annual decline
U.S. stock futures were neutral at 11:50 a.m. in Hong Kong. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq futures rose. U.S. stocks fell Tuesday.
Wednesday morning Asian stock indexes showed mixed trends. Shanghai Composite, Hang Seng, and Nikkei fell, while Kospi rose.
On Tuesday, Moody’s Investor Service downgraded eleven small and midsize U.S. banks due to funding difficulties and lower profitability. The ratings agency also threatened to downgrade U.S. Bancorp, Bank of New York Mellon Corp., and State Street Corp.
Glenmede Chief of Investment Strategy and Research Jason Pride stressed the economic implications of this breakthrough. Regional bank lending is crucial to the economy, making this downgrading significant. Reuters reported this Wednesday.
Pride said the engine performs worse if it loses speed.
Thursday’s U.S. consumer price index (CPI) data is the main focus. Bloomberg expects core CPI to increase 0.2% in July, the lowest monthly gain in two and a half years.
On September 19, the Federal Reserve will decide interest rate policy for U.S. inflation.
The rate is at its highest in 22 years, an increase of 5.25% to 5.50%. The CME FedWatch Tool predicts 86.5% of no interest rate hike in September and 13.5% of a 25-basis-point boost.
China’s July CPI fell 0.3% year-over-year. On Wednesday, Chinese state media Xinhua News Agency announced that the Producer Price Index (PPI) fell 4.4% from the previous year.
July’s CPI data showed China’s first yearly reduction since February 2021, while economists expected 0.4%.
“China is indeed experiencing deflation; the question is for how long,” said Morgan Stanley top China economist Robin Xing. Policymakers must now decide.”