Bitcoin and Ether gained in Wednesday afternoon trading in Asia, along with most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Asian equities mostly rose on Wednesday as investors digested economic recovery indications after Hong Kong ended its mask mandate.

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Fast facts

  • Bitcoin rose 1.98% to US$23,723 at 4 p.m. in Hong Kong on Wednesday, according to CoinMarketCap data. The largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization has lost 1.47% in the last seven days of trade. Ether gained 1.83% to US$1,651 after posting a weekly gain of 0.47%.
  • Litecoin (LTC) gained the most among the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies, rising 3.98% to US$97.27, a week after the Ordinals protocol was launched on Litecoin, giving the network non-fungible token (NFT) capabilities. 
  • Polygon’s Matic token saw the day’s second biggest gain, increasing 2.14% to trade at US$1.25, but declined 7.44% on the week. 
  • Most Asian markets rose on Wednesday after Hong Kong ended its three-year mask mandate, marking an end to Covid-19 restrictions. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index ended the day 4.21% higher, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 inched up 0.26%. The Shanghai Composite gained 1%, and the Shenzhen Component Index rose 1.11%.
  • European stocks started the first day of March slightly higher, fueled by stronger-than-expected manufacturing data from China, despite another potential rate hike from the European Central Bank this month. Germany’s DAX 40 gained 0.3% while France’s STOXX 600 inched up 0.8%.
  • Investment management giant Morgan Stanley has warned that the current stock market rally is a “bull trap,” and that “March is a high-risk month for the bear market to resume,” according to a note seen by Business Insider.
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