Bitcoin and Ether traded little changed, but it looks like a downtrend day for most of the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies in Tuesday morning trading in Asia. Litecoin led the losers, while Dogecoin rose, though the leading meme coin is still down for the prior week. Concerns about the solvency of U.S.-based crypto bank Silvergate and the fallout from its potential failure still cloud the market. The new Forkast NFT 500 index slipped. U.S. equities had a mixed day on Monday as traders await Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s comments to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday for an insight into where interest rates are going.

See related article: Kraken to launch U.S. crypto bank amid regulatory headwinds

Fast facts

  • Bitcoin edged 0.08% higher in the past 24 hours to US$22,483 as of 09:30 a.m. in Hong Kong, according to CoinMarketCap data. The world’s biggest cryptocurrency is still down 4.10% for the last seven-days. Ether gained 0.22% to US$1,571, but like Bitcoin is still a loser for the week, off 3.61%.
  • Dogecoin rose 1.61% to US$0.0757, leading the winners among the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies. But the token is still holding a weekly loss of 7.60%, after Elon Musk, a prominent Dogecoin enthusiast, said on Twitter last Saturday that he had switched his interest from cryptocurrencies to artificial intelligence (AI). 
  • XRP gained 0.72% and was trading at US$0.37. Ripple Labs Inc., the crypto payment network powered by XRP, is posting 69 open jobs in its offices across the world, mainly for software engineers, or a bet on expansion and growth despite the company’s conflict in the courts with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The case is expected to receive a ruling by the middle of this year. XRP lost 1.87% for the seven-day period, the smallest loss among the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies.
  • Litecoin led the losers Tuesday morning, dropping 1.42% to US$88.63, for a weekly loss of 5.83%. Litecoin Foundation launched an update last Friday to improve the security of Litecoin mining, which has appeared to be slow to attract crypto investors.
  • The concerns about crypto bank Silvergate have reached Washington. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a press briefing on Monday that President Joe Biden’s administration is aware of Silvergate’s situation, which is only the latest company “to experience significant issues” in the crypto industry, and the administration will continue to monitor the developments.
  • The total crypto market capitalization was little changed in the past 24 hours, moving 0.25% lower to US$1.02 trillion. Total trading volume over the last 24 hours rose 22.65% to US$15.36 billion.
  • The Forkast NFT 500 index, which went live today, dipped 0.02% to 4,305.75 over the last 24 hours to 8:30 a.m. Tuesday in Hong Kong. The Forkast NFT 500 Index is a proxy measure of the performance of the global NFT market, and includes 500 eligible smart contracts on any given day.
  • Ethereum, the leading blockchain network for NFTs, saw sales rise 38.93% to US$22.4 million, according to data. However, its number of on-chain transactions fell 21.8% to 124,728.
  • Sales on Solana, the second largest NFT blockchain, rose 17.4% to US$3 million, while NFT sales on Polygon surged more than 500% over the 24 hours to US$2.38 million, placing the network in the top 3.
  • By NFT collections, the Ethereum-based CryptoPunks rose 218% in sales to US$1.94 million. Otherdeed, another Ethereum-based NFT that represents the virtual plots of land within the Otherside metaverse, surged 223.5% in sales to US$1.84 million.
  • Coinllectibles – the only Polygon-based NFT collection in Cryptoslam’s top 3, which focuses on art and auctions, recorded US$1.8 million in sales.
  • Alien Worlds’ NFT collection holds the highest number of owners with 4.51 million. Alien Worlds is a play-and-earn NFT game that runs on Ethereum. Play-to-earn staple Axie Infinity has the second highest number of owners with 2.03 million.
  • U.S. equities closed mostly flat on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.12%, the S&P 500 edged up 0.07% and the Nasdaq Composite Index dipped 0.11%.
  • Investors are turning cautious as recent economic readings point to U.S. inflation being more entrenched than previously thought, while Fed officials have said steeper interest rate hikes might be required or rates kept higher for longer if the data continue to suggest an overheated economy.
  • In addition, China at its Two Sessions meeting on Sunday set a modest 5% target for GDP growth in 2023, lower than expectations and also reducing the risk appetite among investors.
  • Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will speak before committees in Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday this week, which investors will focus on for pointers on where the central bank’s policy stands for its meeting later this month on raising interest rates.
  • The Fed’s target range for interest rates is currently between 4.5% to 4.75%, the highest since October 2007. Analysts at the CME Group expect a 68.6% chance that the Fed will raise rates by another 25 basis points this month. They also predict a 31.4% chance for a raise of 50 basis points, up from 27.0% on Monday.