Morning Crypto Briefing: BTC Glued To $30K, ETH In Mid-$1.7Ks Pre-US CPI Release

Key Points

  • Cryptocurrencies continue to languish within recent ranges ahead of the release of US CPI.
  • Bitcoin was last trading near $30K whilst Ethereum was last in the mid-$1,700s.
  • Global bitcoin adoption could hit 10% by 2030, says Blockware in a new report.

State Of The Market

A downbeat tone to global equity market trade over the last 24 or so hours in wake of Thursday’s more hawkish than expected European Central Bank monetary policy announcement (they signaled a series of rate hikes coming in the months ahead), as well as pre-US Consumer Price Inflation data jitters, has kept cryptocurrency trade rangebound/subdued.

Total cryptocurrency market capitalization continues to languish within recent ranges just above $1.20 trillion and just below its 21-Day Moving Average (at $1.231 trillion), leaving it broadly unchanged on the week. US inflation data, which is scheduled for release at 1330BST, will be interpreted in the context of how it affects expectations about US Federal Reserve policy tightening.

If the inflation data surprises on the downside, this may be viewed as easing the pressure felt by the Fed to tighten policy so quickly, which could hurt the US dollar, lower US bond yields and pump US equities and crypto (which have been quite closely correlated in recent months). If it was to surprise to the upside in any significant way, the opposite market reaction would likely be seen.

Bitcoin Glued To $30K Level Pre-US CPI

Bitcoin was last trading almost bang on the $30,000 level and also bang in line with its 21-Day Moving Average, a level which continues to offer short-term support. If upcoming US inflation data shows price pressures easing as or more than expected, bitcoin is in with a shout of testing recent highs in the $32,000 area and its 50DMA just above its at $32,700.

Resistance in the form of the January low at $33,000 is also a notable one to watch. Bitcoin’s market cap currently sits at around $570 billion and it’s crypto market dominance at around 47%, close to multi-month highs.

Price action across major altcoins like ethereum isn’t much different. ETH/USD was last languishing in the mid-$1,700s, as it continues to look fairly vulnerable from a technical perspective. The cryptocurrency has 1) been stuck in a downtrend since early May, 2) been unable to get back above its 21DMA, and 3) formed a descending triangle formation, which often proceeds a bearish breakout.

Ethereum’s market cap is currently around $215 billion. In terms of the other major altcoins, most are trading in the red on Friday but are within recent ranges. According to CoinMarketCap data, Solana’s SOL and Cardano’s ADA were both last down a little over 5.0% while Litcoin and Avalanche’s AVAX were both down in the 3-4% region.

Global Bitcoin Adoption Could Hit 10% By 2030

Bitcoin’s adoption by the global population could hit 10% as soon as 2030, a new report by Blockware this week claimed. Blockware arrived at this conclusion by looking at the historical adoption curves for past disruptive technologies including smartphones, the internet, social media, automobiles and electric power, as well as looking at bitcoin’s adoption growth since its inception in 2009.

“All disruptive technologies follow a similar exponential S-curve pattern,” Blockware said, although “newer network-based technologies continue to be adopted much faster than the market expects”.

Grayscale, Bitwise Optimistic On Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval

CoinDesk’s much-anticipated Consensus 2022 crypto conference kicked off on Thursday and high-profile officials from both Grayscale and Bitwise said in a panel discussion that they were optimistic that the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) would soon approve a spot bitcoin ETF.

Matt Hougan, chief investment officer for Bitwise, highlighted the progression made by the SEC in recent years, including its recent approval of bitcoin futures ETFs based on the 1940 and 1933 Investment Acts. “That’s a progression that ends in a spot bitcoin ETF,” he said. Meanwhile, “it’s not that long ago that there really was a question of if this was going to happen,” opined David LaValle, global head of ETFs at Grayscale, said, adding that “it’s clearly (now) a question of when it’s going to happen”.

Mastercard Seeks To Lower Barrier To Buying NFTs With Direct Card Payments

Mastercard on Thursday announced plans to lower the hurdle faced by the average consumer in purchasing Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) by introducing card payments to the ecosystem. At present, NFTs nearly always need to be purchased in a cryptocurrency (like ETH, ADA or SOL). Mastercard said it has partnered with Immutable X, Candy Digital, The Sandbox, Mintable, Spring, Nifty Gateway and MoonPay.

“We’re working with these companies to allow people to use their Mastercard cards for NFTs purchases, whether that’s on one of these companies’ marketplaces or using their crypto services,” said Raj Dhamodharan, an executive vice president at the company. “With 2.9 billion Mastercard cards worldwide, this change could have a big impact on the NFT ecosystem,” he continued.

Regulation Update: Yellen Says Congress Could Regulate What Can Be Included In Retirement Savings

US Treasury Secretary and former Fed Chair Janet Yellen gave some comments on the inclusion of crypto in retirement savings plans on Thursday. She said that she wouldn’t recommend crypto for most retirement savers and called it a very risky investment. Moreover, in comments that will likely raise ire in the crypto community, Yellen even went as far as to say that Congress could regulate the type of assets that can be included in pension plans.

“I’m not saying I recommend it, but that to my mind would be a reasonable thing,” she remarked. Back in April, major US pension plan provider Fidelity Investments announced plans to soon allow retirement savers to allocate as much as 20% of their portfolio into bitcoin, subject to the approval of plan sponsors.

Elsewhere, US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) commissioner Summer Mersinger said on Thursday that we are “seeing the industry coalesce around the CFTC becoming the primary (crypto) regulator”. Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Gary Gensler may have something to say about that. In the past, he has said that many cryptocurrencies can be considered more akin to securities.

Speaking of the SEC, one of the big stories on Thursday was that the US regulator has opened up an investigation into whether Terraform Labs, the developer of the Terra blockchain and ill-fated algorithmic UST stablecoin, broke US law regarding how it marketed itself. Employees of Terra have reportedly told the SEC that Terraform Labs CEO Do Kwon cashed out over $80 million one month prior to the LUNA and UST crash.

Other News: UFC Lands Massive $100M Deal With VeChain, Bloomberg Terminal Expands Crypto Coverage

The world’s premier Mixed Martial Arts promotion the UFC and VeChain on Thursday announced a massive $100 million, five-year sponsorship deal. VeChain’s marketing and brand will now be integrated into live UFC events, arena promotion and in social media.

Bloomberg announced on Thursday that it has expanded its coverage from 10 to 50 cryptocurrencies on its terminal, the latest sign of growing interest/demand from major financial institutions. The Bloomberg Terminal is the premier financial software used by global financial institutions for communication, trading, data analysis, real-time news etc.