Bitcoin Breaks into a New ATH Above $60,000

Funding surged at one point to 0.5% but now coming down some while just over $1 billion in the past 24 hours with Binance’s degen users yet again leading.

Bitcoin entered the weekend with a very strong move as the leading crypto asset made a new all-time high just as the $1,400 stimulus checks to Americans have also started coming in.

The digital asset broke the Feb. 21st ATH of $58,350 and climbed to nearly $60,266 on Bitfinex, $60,200 on Binance, and $60k on Coinbase. A “significant negative” price gap between Coinbase and Binance shows this surge came from stablecoin buying power, per CryptoQuant.

The market is unaffected by the reports of CFTC probing Binance. As Matt Blom, global head of sales trading at EQUOS, said,

“The bears’ last stand is the $57,800 level, and it looks like we might be seeing that battle play out before the week is over,” and we did. On the downside, around $55k, he sees levels “supported by dip-buying bulls and dip-buying bears alike.”

This momentum saw the funding rate on futures platforms also rising fiercely. Bitcoin’s perpetual funding rate reacted to the bulls, and at one point, longs paid 0.5% to shorts on Deribit, as per Viewbase.

Liquidations were relatively small today as in the past four hours only about $360 million got rekt while 195,975 traders were liquidated for just over $1 billion in the past 24 hours.

And of course, much like always, Binance users were leading the liquidations, which is no surprise given that in the first two months of the launch of Binance Futures, an average of more than 60% of platform traders were using 20x or higher leverage and 21% of traders an eye-popping 125x leverage.

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The new ATH came just a day after MicroStrategy purchased an additional 262 BTC for $15 billion that brought its total holdings to 91,326 BTC. Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy said,

“People still aren’t sure: Are we crazy or are we not crazy?”

“The only way to get economic security is to invest in scarce assets that are not going to be debased by currency expansion. That is the environment that led us to decide we should consider Bitcoin as a treasury reserve asset.”

While Bitcoin bull Saylor continues to move towards 100k BTC holdings, much like the price, the number of addresses with a balance of more than 1k BTC has seen a drop.

According to analyst Lex Moskovski of Moskovski Capital, it could be larger addresses splitting for custody purposes or whale selling.

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Amidst all this, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, which also has invested in Bitcoin, made another tweet in support of the cryptocurrency.

“BTC (Bitcoin) is an anagram of TBC(The Boring Company) What a coincidence!” tweeted Musk. “Both do mining & use blocks & chains.”

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Author: AnTy

BTC Breaks Yet Another Level, k, as Elon Musk says, Bitcoin and Ethereum ‘Seem High’

Since making a similar remark on his electric car company, the price of TSLA shares has surged 400%. Tesla CEO is also busy mining his favorite cryptocurrency Dogecoin as a “fun family project.”

The market value of Bitcoin hit the milestone of $1 trillion on Friday as the price of the digital asset broke past many levels.

Today, we went even higher, past $57,000, aiming for the sweet round number of $60k now. As of writing, BTC/USD has been comfortably trading above $57k, with a market cap of $1.06 billion.

With Bitcoin continuing to roar higher, Tesla CEO Elon Musk threw some love at Bitcoin with yet again the picture of Bitcoin in his Twitter profile, but “Just for a day.”

Musk also took a jab at gold bug Peter Schiff, who thinks and talks about Bitcoin day and night, all the time, and this time as well saying gold is real money and better than both fiat and Bitcoin, referring to Musk calling “Bitcoin is almost as BS as fiat money.”

“An email saying you have gold is not the same as having gold. You might as well have crypto. Money is just data that allows us to avoid the inconvenience of barter. That data, like all data, is subject to latency & error. The system will evolve to that which minimizes both.”

Musk explained to Schiff, adding, “That said, BTC & ETH do seem high lol.”

Musk made a similar infamous comment regarding his electric car company back in May last year, “Tesla stock price is too high imo.” Since then, the price of TSLA shares has surged 400%.

Besides Bitcoin, the founder and CEO of SpaceX is also busy mining his favorite cryptocurrency, Dogecoin.

“I just set up some little Doge mining rigs with my kids. It was fun,” said Musk on Saturday. He also shared that he has been using Antminer L3+ rigs to mine the meme coin, which was bought off eBay.

“Not really economic, but it was a fun family project,” he added.

The Next Major Milestone

When it comes to Bitcoin, the leading digital currency is enjoying more than a 92% uptrend in 2021 so far.

Despite the latest round of gains, over 17% this week, the funding rates on Bitcoin perpetual contracts haven’t heated up, currently between 0.0158% on Deribit and 0.1457% on Huobi, as per Viewbase.

While the Perp-spot basis is flat, the basis of the future is sky high while implied volatility is falling and 25-day skew rising, noted trader and economist Alex Kruger adding, “leverage is very high, but inflows are gargantuan.”

Now that the first milestone for $1 trillion has been hit, the next major milestone ahead for Bitcoin is surpassing the market cap of gold which is about $10 trillion. This will put the price of Bitcoin around $500,000.

Qiao Wang of DeFi Alliance has a 90% conviction that it will happen in our lifetime but will this happen during this hype cycle, that’s to be seen.

Before that, going above $100k will make it the world’s largest asset, dethroning Apple. The hopium from Su Zhu, the CEO of Three Arrows Capital,

“This is not yet another cycle; this is the End of Cycles. The one where after BTC flippens gold, it doesn’t flip back. The one where web3 supersedes web2. Where culture is collected and accrued digitally instead of physically. Where life is lived mindfully rather than mindlessly.”

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Author: AnTy

Ether’s Bullish Momentum Continues with Institutional Demand

Just like Bitcoin surged to a record high, nearly $52,700 on Wednesday, Ether has broken past the $1,900 level, hitting nearly $1,930.

For Bitcoin, “what stands out most is the trend that MicroStrategy started, and Tesla popularized: moving institutional balance sheets into Bitcoin to hedge against inflation,” said Nicholas Pelecanos, head of trading at NEM.

The Bitcoin futures market sees a lot of activity, with volume keeping above $50 billion this month and at times hitting $100 million.

CME Group is particularly getting traction, hitting a record $5 billion mark for the first time on Tuesday.

Interestingly, hedge funds continue to be record short on Bitcoin on CME, but at the same time, they are record long on Grayscale, capturing the premium on GBTC. They are also earning over 50% annualized funding from the basis trade on their USD.

As of writing, the price of Bitcoin on Coinbase was $51,525 and $52,090 on CME.

Earlier this month, CME also launched Ether futures, which started slowly, much like Bitcoin futures when they were listed in Dec. 2017.

But “it will likely not take as long for Ethereum futures to begin gaining traction as it initially took for Bitcoin futures, as investor interest in cryptocurrencies has had a few years to mature,” noted JPMorgan strategists.

Already daily trading volume of Ethereum futures on CME has doubled, and open interest surpassed $60 million.

The growing institutional demand for Ether can also be seen on Grayscale, the largest digital asset manager, which bought over 20k ETH in the last 24 hours, bringing its total holdings to 3.15 million ETH.

As we reported, the fundamentals of the second largest cryptocurrency are very strong. The fees are crazy high and never seen before levels of addresses continue to interact with Ethereum.

The network is also seeing an average of 1.2 million daily transactions and an average of 550k daily active addresses. Large transactions, more than $100k, that act as a proxy to institutional activity, have also recorded an increase of 45x in the past year.

Even on social media, conversations around ETH have nearly doubled since the beginning of the year, with over 20.6k tweets (on average) sent out about ETH every day, up from 10.9k on January 1st, as per data provider The TIE.

In that regard, the price of Ether is slow-moving, though it outperforms Bitcoin with 160% YTD gains compared to leading cryptocurrency’s 75%.

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Author: AnTy

Cryptocurrency Ransomware Attacks Surged Over 300% in 2020: Chainalysis’ Crime Report

Cryptocurrency Ransomware Attacks Surged Over 300% in 2020: Chainalysis’ Crime Report

Revenue from crypto-related crime was reduced by 53% last year. Illicit funds, scams, and proceeds of crime through crypto also dropped. However, The value of ransomware attacks tripled, generating over $350 million.

Chainalysis’ “Crypto Crime Report 2021” shows a significant decrease in cryptocurrency-related crime across 2020, revenue from these illicit activities dropping by $5 billion, or 53%, from the previous year. The total illicit activity compared to the total transactional volume also dipped to only 0.34% in 2020, or $10 billion – a sharp dip from the 2.1% ($21.4 billion) recorded in 2019.

Overall, cryptocurrency-related scams and illegal activities are falling. Only a small portion of illicit activity is left in the crypto ecosystem. The overall illicit value from crypto is falling compared to illicit funds in traditional finance, the Chainalysis report reads.

As was the case in 2019, scams made up the biggest chunk of crypto-related crime – reporting $2.7 billion, a sharp 71% drop from $9 billion the previous year. Interestingly, the number of individual scams made to scam wallets rose by 48% across 2020 to 7.3 million individual scams. The sharp drop in value in 2020 mainly arises from the fact that no scam is close enough to the magnanimous PlusToken Ponzi scam in 2019.

Across 2020, the total crime value from scams and other illicit acts raised nearly $10 billion, dropping from $20 billion in revenue collected by bad actors in 2019.

Despite the celebrations, the value from ransomware attacks tripled in the past year, representing 7% of all the illicit crypto-based transactions. At $350 million in value across 2020, crypto-ransomware attacks grew over 311% in a year – the largest growth amongst the report’s illicit categories. The spike is attributed to the global Covid-19 pandemic, which prompted the “work from home” culture, presenting new vulnerable opportunities.

Darknet markets and stolen funds witness a less dramatic increase than ransomware – a 29% increase and a 4% increase from 2019’s values, respectively.

Earlier in the year, Chainalysis reported that the total number of cryptocurrency crimes had fallen over 83% in 2020, as regulation and exchange compliance came alive during the year.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Brave Crosses 25M Monthly Active Users; Privacy Browser Continues Growth Trajectory

The number of active monthly users on Brave Browser has surged over the past year. The service is also seeing significant gains with its Brave Ads program.

Brave Browser enjoyed significant growth in 2020, capitalizing on the increasing focus on privacy to hit new milestones. The privacy-centric browser doubled its user base in 2020, setting itself up for possibly more gains in 2021.

Privacy Focus Benefits Brave

According to a press release, Brave explained that its monthly active users jumped from 11.6 million to 25.4 million last year, per its press release. Daily active users jumped similarly, moving by 126 percent from 3.8 million to 8.6 million. The number of verified content creators on the platform passed one million for the first time.

Brendan Eich, the company’s co-founder and chief executive, explained that the increase in its user base represented the increased desire for people to escape the “surveillance economy.” He explained in the release,

“25 million people have made the switch to Brave in order to protect their privacy and to regain control of their browsing experience. Users are realizing that a new way to browse the Web is just one click away with a seamless Brave download and that they can opt-out of the surveillance economy and instead get rewarded for browsing.”

Eich believes the company’s growth would continue, citing the increased influence of Big Tech companies on the internet landscape. With these firms showing a propensity for collecting user data, Brave will be there to provide a viable alternative.

Building Its Ecosystem

Brave has been doing a great deal of work to improve user security. In July, it partnered with Guardian, a VPN, and firewall service provider, to improve its iOS customers’ security.

The partnership saw the two companies capitalize on their strengths, Brave’s privacy-focused browser, and Guardian’s firewall and VPN offering. Brave’s iOS users can now turn on the Brave Firewall + VPN service in one click, protecting their devices from trackers.

However, the company has also been able to make significant strides in its Brave Ads program. The program allows users to opt-in to watch ads in exchange for the company’s native token Basic Attention Token (BAT).

Last year, Brave pointed out that several top crypto firms had signed up for its ads program. These included stock trading app eToro and crypto lending firm BlockFi.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

Retail Catching Up on Bitcoin as the Digital Asset Gets Ready for $30k

Google Search interest for Bitcoin, Crypto, and ‘Buy Crypto’ has surged to Jan. and Feb. 2018 levels.

Bitcoin vaulted above $29,000 to hit an all-time high at around $29,620 on New Year’s Day. Last month, Bitcoin advanced about 50% to mark its biggest monthly gain since May 2019.

Q4 of 2020 was the second-biggest percentage gaining quarter ever at 168.78%, after 210% of Q4 of 2017.

These gains took Bitcoin’s market capitalization past $545 million and it became the 10th largest asset by market cap, surpassing BTC skeptic Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway.

Bitcoin’s weekly RSI at 92 meanwhile is pointing to Bitcoin being in overbought territory and the market is expecting BTC BTC 0.83% Bitcoin / USD BTCUSD $ 29,329.57
$243.44 0.83%
Volume 40.77 b Change $243.44 Open $29,329.57 Circulating 18.59 m Market Cap 545.17 b
8 h Retail Catching Up on Bitcoin as the Digital Asset Gets Ready for $30,000 9 h Bitcoin Hits a New All-Time Record High Against the Traditional Safe Haven Gold 1 d Bitcoin is ‘Going to Fall’ if a Correction is Seen in Stocks, Says Fundstrat’s Tom Lee
to top somewhere around $30k before seeing a correction. But given the strong and resilient demand for the digital asset, it’s anyone’s guess at this point, when and how low exactly we will go at this point if any at all.

Bitcoin’s Gain, USD’s Loss

While bitcoin is on a price discovery ever since breaking 2017 ATH $20k, the US dollar posted its biggest yearly loss since 2017.

The greenback soared to a three-year high of 103 against a basket of currencies in March when panic over the spread of COVID-19 in the US peaked, pushing all the markets down, before dropping on unprecedented Federal Reserve stimulus.

Now, improving global economic outlook, COVID-19 vaccines getting rolled out, ongoing fed bond purchase, and zero to sub-zero interest rates have put a dent in the dollar’s appeal.

“I expect the dollar to depreciate further over the next few years as the Fed keeps rates at zero whilst maintaining its bloated balance sheet,” Kevin Boscher, chief investment officer at asset manager Ravenscroft, told clients.

All the actors negatively affecting USD are actually working in favor of Bitcoin, pushing the digital asset’s prices higher and higher towards the moon.

Retail Taking Notice

The growing prices of Bitcoin have started to catch the attention of retail as well. The interest in the term Bitcoin on Google Trends has seen an uptick to February 2018 levels in the US, although nowhere near the 2017 high.

A similar jump in interest is seen worldwide but while it has a reading of 39, on a 0-100 scale, compared to the 30 reading in the US. Nigeria, South Africa, Austria, Ghana, and Switzerland are currently leading this interest.

Interest is actually higher for the terms ‘crypto’ and ‘buy crypto’ that have a reading between 40 to 48 last seen in Jan. 2018, both in the US and worldwide, most among Malta, Australia, Slovenia, Nigeria, and St Helena.

Among the cryptocurrencies, Google Search interest for Bitcoin, ETH, and XRP are at their highest since Jan. 2018 with Tezos being the only one to hit its peak in 2020. While ETH has relatively the highest search interest, IOTA has the lowest.

When it comes to Twitter, “the percentage of Bitcoin tweets coming from unique Twitter accounts is at an ATH,” noted The TIE.

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Author: AnTy

Coinbase Pre-IPO Contracts Now Trading on FTX, Price Surged 145% Within an Hour

Coinbase Pre-IPO Contracts Now Trading on FTX, Price Surged 145% Within an Hour

CBSE contracts recorded US$2.25 million in trading volume on its debut day, and its price went as high as $296.

Crypto derivatives platform FTX has now listed Coinbase’s pre-IPO contract with ticker CBSE.

Unlike tokenized stocks but much like Airbnb’s Pre-IPO contracts, they track the market cap of Coinbase. These contracts are tradeable with up to 5x leverage.

CBSE balances will be converted into the equivalent amount of Coinbase Fractional Stock tokens at the end of Coinbase’s first public trading day on June 1, 2022. If Coinbase does not publicly list by then, CBSE balances will cash-expire to US$32, which is in line with Coinbase’s $8 billion valuation.

The contract started trading at around $120 today and went just above $296 in less than an hour. Ever since this significant uptick within the trading’s early hours, the contract’s price has been trading around $240.

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At one point, Coinbase Pre-IPO contracts were traded at an implied $70 billion market price, which made the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange’s worth at 20% of BTC, 100% of ETH, and 300% of total DeFi market cap.

The contract tracks Coinbase’s market cap divided by 250,000,000. These contracts have garnered tremendous attention, as evident from about US$2.25 million trading volume.

These Coinbase pre-IPO contracts are recording more volume than SRM/USD and much higher than ABNB’s under $2,500 on the exchange.

“This IPO will capture investors’ imagination of what is possible in crypto the same way Google did it for the Internet,” noted Santiago R Santos of investment firm ParaFi Capital.

Coinbase announced its plans of going public just before the weekend, for which the largest US crypto exchange has hired Goldman Sachs Group.

Founded in 2012, Coinbase has more than 35 million users all over the world.

It confidentially applied with the US SEC on Thursday to go public, a move that would make it the first significant crypto company to be listed on the stock market. Crypto data provider Messari valued the exchange at $28 billion following this news.

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Author: AnTy

Grayscale Recording Inflows “Unlike Ever Before;” Meanwhile Largest Gold ETF Yet to See Any

Bitcoin is enjoying a wild rally, having surged more than 20% since yesterday this too, while average BTC fees being just above $4.

Trading above $23,000 with $11.27 billion in ‘real’ volume, the market is euphoric with greens.

Bitcoin’s market cap has reached above $430 billion today, adding more than $70 billion since yesterday.

This is all the result of the factors at play in this bull market that we haven’t ever seen before in terms of “investment banks writing research highlighting bitcoin superiority to gold,” said Michael Sonnenshein, Managing Director of the largest crypto asset manager Grayscale Investments.

We also saw prominent investors like Paul Tudor Jones, Stanley Druckenmiller, BlackRock CIO, and many others coming out supporting this asset class and corporations like Square and MicroStrategy adding bitcoin to their balance sheet as a reserve asset.

As Sonnenshein shared in his interview with CNBC, Grayscale is currently seeing flows that “are now probably up 6x what they were last year.”

Elaborating on the type of investors that are buying GBTC at over 34% premium to Bitcoin price and ETHE at nearly 210% premium to Ether, Sonnenshein said these “investors that are putting capital to work are unlike any of the investors we’re seeing ever before.” He said,

“It’s some of the world’s largest investors and the allocations that they’re making are bigger than we’ve ever seen before and their time horizon for this is generally something over the medium to longer-term.”

As of writing, GBTC holds just above 569k BTC, worth more than $12 billion, representing just over 3% of Bitcoins’ circulating supply, while their Ether stash represents 2.58% supply at 2.94 million ETH worth $1.84 billion.

Unlike all the flows that Bitcoin sees currently, gold has yet to recover from all the outflows it started recording last month. Kevin Rooke noted,

“The world’s largest gold ETF sold 8.3% of its gold so far in Q4 (100+ tons), and hasn’t seen any inflows in 17 trading days. November 19th was the last day the NAV of GLD actually went up, almost a month ago.”

However, the price of gold did manage to uptrend some on the back of declining USD, and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell vowing that they will keep up with its massive monetary stimulus.

Climbing to $1,890, the bullion still recorded 22.32% returns in 2020 compared to Bitcoin’s 223%.

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Author: AnTy

Circle Introduces High Yield Interest Rate Accounts on the Fastest Growing Stablecoin

Over the past eight months, the market cap of USDC has surged a whopping 560%.

Before the violent sell-off at the beginning of March, this stablecoin was a mere $445 million, which is ready to hit $3 billion, as per CoinGecko.

USDC’s growth even beats the largest stablecoin Tether’s (USDT), which grew 288% during the same period. However, its total market cap is inches away from hitting $17 billion.

Also, USDC had more than $11 billion of transfer value (adjusted) earlier last week, completely annihilating the previous all-time high of $2.11 billion. However, this record was because of the exploit in the DeFi protocol Harvest Finance, which involved a series of USDC flash loans.

And Circle, which created USDC in collaboration with crypto exchange Coinbase, wants to capitalize on this growth by announcing new high-yield accounts. The tweet from Circle reads,

“Circle is planning to introduce short and medium-term high yield interest rate business accounts built entirely on USDC. Starting at 8% APY, make sure to secure a spot on the waitlist today.”

As per the website, the USDC account starts at 8.5% APY for the open term, while for the fixed term, it starts with 9.50% and can go high as 10.75% for 12-months. The interest will accrue daily and be paid out weekly. Circle states,

“Yield is generated by lending your digital dollars to a network of institutional counterparties that are willing to pay an interest rate for access to additional capital.”

The yield generation offering has been initiated in collaboration with the lending firm Genesis.

Besides high yield savings accounts, it also provides its services to corporate treasuries. Business accounts and APIs were first started in March, allowing companies to “easily upload their dollars to the internet, convert them into digital currency dollars and start storing and using stablecoins for everyday payments,” said Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire at the time.

Back in summer, Circle first started offering lending protocols and rewards for staking USDC. Last month, Circle further shared that USDC would be expanding to Solana and Stellar blockchain, adding to Ethereum and Algorand.

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Author: AnTy

US Household Net Worth Rises to a Record $119 Trillion Level in Q2

The net worth of American households and non-profit organizations surged in the second quarter to the highest level ever, thanks to the rebound in stocks and fiscal stimulus following a record drop in the previous quarter.

Household net worth increased by 6.8%, or $7.6 trillion, to a record $118.96 trillion, according to a Federal Reserve report. This was the largest quarterly gain since 1952. This is also about $380 billion more than the net worth at the end of 2019.

This increase came despite a record drop of $7 trillion in the previous three months, quarter first, caused by an economic shock from the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the same period, the level of federal government borrowing also soared as lawmakers responded with massive fiscal relief. Additionally, the value of equities increased $5.7 trillion from the prior quarter, while real estate advanced about $458 billion.

In the first quarter, the pandemic and the subsequent shutdowns sent the economy into a recession, which was the deepest since the 1940s. This resulted in a record decline in the household net worth in the first quarter of 2020.

Since then, the economy has been seeing a gradual recovery. Not to mention, the S&P 500’s quick recovery to pre-pandemic levels in mid-August and fresh highs this month. While the Dow Jones Industrial Average remained about 1.5% away from its February peak, Nasdaq jumped 23% higher than the previous ATH.

However, not every American benefited from this growth, as about 45% of the US population doesn’t own equities, according to a June 2020 survey from Gallup.

In the second quarter, in comparison, Bitcoin recorded over 42% returns.

The housing sector also experienced a V-shaped recovery as pent-up demand and record-low mortgage rates boosted sales, but again, one-third of households don’t own a home.

Consumer credit excluding mortgage debt decreased $69 billion during the pandemic, for the first time in four years.

Low-interest rates that the Fed has announced to keep near-zero through 2023, meanwhile bolstered corporate borrowing during this period. While firms’ debt increased at an annualized rate of 14%, federal debt outstanding swelled at a rate of 58.9%.

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Author: AnTy