Bitcoin rose on Wednesday morning in Asia, moving beyond the US$28,000 mark. Ether and most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies also gained, with Polygon’s Matic token leading the winners. Polygon’s blockchain is also seeing a surge in non-fungible token (NFT) sales. U.S. equities fell as job openings declined to the lowest since May 2021, signaling a cooling economy and stirring concern about a recession after a year-long series of interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve.

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Fast facts

  • Bitcoin gained 1.36% to US$28,172 in the last 24 hours to 8 a.m. in Hong Kong, up 3.32% in the last week, according to CoinMarketCap data. The leading cryptocurrency added almost 3% by mid-morning in Asia trading. Ethereum rose 3.35% to US$1,870, a weekly gain of 5.53%. 
  • Polygon’s Matic token was the biggest gainer out of the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, adding 3.84% to US$1.14 for a weekly gain of 4.74%. Polygon’s y00ts NFT sale was the largest among all blockchains in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning, according to Polygon’s official Twitter handle. 
  • “Compared to this time last year, Polygon is seeing roughly 3-5x the number of unique sellers, buyers, and total transactions monthly. This is largely due to non-NFT traders now being exposed to non-fungible tokens through Starbucks rewards and Reddit Avatars,” said Yehudah Petscher, strategist at Forkast Labs’ NFT data specialist unit, Cryptoslam.
  • Dogecoin, which surged Tuesday following Elon Musk’s move to change Twitter’s blue bird icon to the memecoin’s Shiba Inu dog image, fell back 0.89% to US$0.09523. The meme token’s value jumped 29% over the last seven days, which seems to have awakened some wallets, with Whale Alert noting one containing 1.2 million Doge activated after more than nine years dormant. 
  • The global crypto market capitalization rose 1.43% to US$1.19 trillion while the total market trade volume dipped 14% to US$42.06 billion in the last 24 hours.
  • In the NFT market, the Forkast 500 NFT Index dipped 0.11% to 4,035.10 in the 24 hours to 09:00 a.m. in Hong Kong, but added 0.74% for the week. The CryptoSlam index is a proxy measure of the performance of the global NFT market and includes 500 eligible smart contracts on any given day.
  • From Jan. 1, 2022, to April 4, 2022, the Forkast 500 showed the market fell almost 12% and for the same period through April 4 this year, the index is down just 2%, said Petscher. “We trade in cycles so I’m curious if we really have much further to fall, or if we’ve found some sort of floor that’s supported by collectors that are here for the long haul,” he said.
  • U.S. equities closed lower on Tuesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.59%, and the S&P 500 lost 0.58%. The Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.52%. 
  • The number of job openings in the U.S. fell to 9.9 million in February, the lowest since May 2021 and below market expectations of 10.4 million, indicating a cooling economy, according to Trading Economics
  • The data points indicate the Fed’s battle against inflation may be working, but at the same time concern is growing that with U.S. interest rates now between 4.75% to 5%, or the highest in 17 years, the central bank may have gone too far and the world’s biggest economy could slide into a recession. Analysts at the CME Group have shifted in their view on the outcome of the Fed May 3 meeting to decide on interest rates, with a majority of analysts, about 59%, predicting no change, while 41.1% expect a 25 basis-point rise.
  • U.S. stock futures traded higher of 9:30 a.m. in Hong Kong. The Dow Jones Industrial Average Index Futures edged up 0.098%, S&P 500 Futures gained 0.097% and the  Nasdaq-100 Futures added 0.13%. 

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