Bitcoin and Ether gained in Tuesday afternoon trade in Asia, along with most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies. Polygon’s Matic token led gains followed by XRP and Dogecoin. The new Forkast NFT 500 index slipped, and Chinese equity markets led losses in Asia over weak trade data. Investors await comments by U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell later today for clarity on the central bank’s interest rates.

See related article: Where is China’s blockchain, digital economy heading? The upcoming ‘Two Sessions’ may give some pointers

Fast facts

  • Bitcoin gained 0.14% to US$22,434 in 24 hours to 4 p.m. in Hong Kong on Tuesday. The biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization has lost 3.57% on the week, according to CoinMarketCap data. Ether rose 0.61% to US$1,571, after losing 3.07% in the last seven days. 
  • Polygon’s Matic token was the day’s biggest gainer, rising 2.57% to US$1.16 but losing 5.31% on the week. XRP had the second-best performance, gaining 1.84% to change hands at US$0.37, even as it dropped 1.2% on the week.
  • Dogecoin strengthened 1.24% to US$0.07496, but has lost 7.87% in the last seven days of trade. 
  • The global cryptocurrency market capitalization gained 0.3% to US$1.03 trillion, while the total crypto market volume rose 11.82% to US$33.01 billion in the last 24 hours. 
  • Chinese equity markets led losses in Asia on Tuesday. The Shanghai Composite lost 1.11%, the Shenzhen Component Index dropped 1.98%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index slipped 0.33%. China’s exports in January and February fell 6.8% on the year, while imports shrank 10.2% on weaker commodity prices and a stronger dollar. 
  • Japan’s Nikkei 225 gained 0.25% and South Korea’s Kospi inched up 0.03%. 
  • European stocks were mostly flat in anticipation of U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s testimony before Congress, which will provide investors cues on the U.S. central bank’s monetary policy path. Germany’s DAX 40 inched up 0.14% while the STOXX 600 gained 0.15%.
  • European investors digested hawkish remarks from European Central Bank (ECB) board member Robert Holzmann, who called for four more interest rate hikes of 50 basis points each. The ECB already pledged to increase interest rates by 50 basis points on March 16.
  • The Forkast NFT 500 index, which went live on Tuesday, dipped 0.44% to 4,281.36 over the last 24 hours to 4 p.m. on 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.
  • Sales of Ethereum, the leading blockchain network for NFTs, increased 35.48% to US$23.5 million, according to data. The number of on-chain transactions on the network fell 14.6% to 124,703.
  • Sales of Solana, the second largest NFT blockchain, rose 23.93% to US$3.4 million. NFT sales on Polygon surged 63% over the 24 hours to US$1.7 million.
  • By NFT collections, the Ethereum-based Otherdeed led sales volume with a 248% increase to US$2.5 million. Otherdeed NFTs represent the virtual plots of land within the Otherside metaverse, with 32,752 owners.
  • Mocaverse, the membership NFTs collection from Web 3.0 venture capital and game developer Animoca Brands, had the second highest volume of sales with US$1.7 million.
  • The NFT collection by Alien Worlds, a play-and-earn NFT game that runs on Ethereum, has the most owners, with 4.51 million, followed by play-to-earn staple Axie Infinity with 2.03 million.
  • See related article: The digital economy needs a better BS detector — so we are building it through data transparency