$BTC 24 Hour High $25,178.76
$BTC 24 Hour Low $24,160.38
$ETH 24 Hour High $2,029.30
$ETH 24 Hour Low $1,918.35
Happy Monday from HKbitEX! Hope you had a great holiday! Highlights from the week:
- Ethereum completes final dress rehearsal before the Merge
- BlackRock launches private trust offering direct bitcoin exposure
- Bank of Thailand to pilot retail CBDC by year-end
- Coinbase faces SEC probe over crypto yield, staking products
- Constitutional questions raised about privacy and speech after US sanctions Tornado Cash
The $BTC and $ETH market
Bitcoin touched $25,000 for the first time in over two months. It marked a multi-month high above $24,800 later that day. A brief retracement followed that pushed it down to $23,500, but the bulls came back to play rather immediately. Markets jumped mid-week after the US consumer-price inflation (CPI) data showed inflation has cooled. The most impressive surge came on August 10 when the asset jumped from $23,000 to over $24,000.
$ETH-wise, the second-largest cryptocurrency spiked again (+17%) to $1.9k after developers merged a proof-of-work testing environment called Goerli with a proof-of-stake chain, in the third and final dry run before the real “Merge” happens next month. With the hype surrounding the upcoming Merge, ETH soared to a multi-month high of its own, above $2,000.
Why the Merge - Ethereum has been working to shift from the energy-intensive proof-of-work method for securing the network to a proof-of-stake model, which requires users to leverage their existing cache of ether to verify transactions and mint new tokens. The Merge is an upgrade that is poised to make the blockchain more efficient and consume far less energy.
Mixer Tornado Cash blacklisted
The US Treasury has blacklisted cryptocurrency mixer Tornado Cash, raising key constitutional questions about privacy and speech. Tornado Cash, according to the press release, has been used to launder more than $7 billion worth of virtual currency since its creation in 2019. The action against Tornado is the Treasury’s most significant action in the crypto space to date.
What is Tornado Cash - Tornado Cash (Tornado) is a virtual currency mixer that operates on the Ethereum blockchain and indiscriminately facilitates anonymous transactions by obfuscating their origin, destination, and counterparties, with no attempt to determine their origin.
BlackRock has launched a private trust offering institutional clients in the U.S. direct exposure to bitcoin. “Despite the steep downturn in the digital asset market, we are still seeing substantial interest from some institutional clients in how to efficiently and cost-effectively access these assets using our technology and product capabilities,” the company said in the post.
The Bank of Thailand plans on advancing the development of CBDC to a pilot phase aimed at assessing benefits and associated risks. The Bank of Thailand (BOT) said it will launch a retail Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) pilot which is set to run from late 2022 to mid- 2023.
Publicly traded crypto exchange Coinbase Global (COIN) is under investigation by U.S. securities regulators over its token listing processes as well as its staking programs and yield-generating products, the company disclosed in its most recent quarterly report.
NFT & DeFi
Most DeFi names, Layer-1’s and GameFi tokens had a positive week, with Avalanche (+22.2%), Chainlink (+21.9%) and Solana (+10.3%), all standout performers.