Bitcoin and Ether rose on Monday morning in Asia along with all of the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, though most are still trading lower from prices a week ago. Solana led the gainers, bouncing back from a network glitch. The gains in crypto came despite the declines in equities on Wall Street on Friday following release of data showing inflation remains stubbornly high.
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- Bitcoin rose 1.70% in the past 24 hours to trade at US$23,559 as of 8 a.m. in Hong Kong, but is still down 3.15% for the past seven days, according to CoinMarketCap data. Ethereum gained 2.87% to US$1,640, reducing its loss for the week to 2.5%.
- Solana bounced back 3.3% to US$23.25 after resolving a technical glitch on Saturday that had slowed transactions on the Solana blockchain, according to Solana monitoring site Solana Status. The token is still down 6.5% for the seven day period.
- Shiba Inu gained 3.6% after developers announced over the weekend a beta version of Shibarium, which is expected to reduce transaction fees and improve the scalability of the Shiba Inu blockchain. However, like other crypto, the meme token is down for the week, posting a weekly loss of 4.0%.
- The total crypto market capitalization edged 1.9% higher to US$1.08 trillion, while the total trading volume fell by 8.2% over the past 24 hours to US$34.35 billion.
- U.S. equities closed lower on Friday to post the worst week so far in 2023. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.02%, the S&P 500 dropped 1.05% and the Nasdaq Composite Index posted the biggest loss of 1.69%.
- The losses in equities followed the release of the personal consumption expenditures price index for January, which rose 4.7% on year and 0.6% on month when excluding food and energy prices. The index is used by the Federal Reserve to track inflation, suggesting the central bank may be more likely to keep interest rates higher for longer to slow the pace of inflation.
- U.S. interest rates are now between 4.5% to 4.75%, the highest since October 2007. The January Fed meeting minutes released last Wednesday showed policymakers agreed to moderate the size of rate increases, but warned the tightening cycle is not over.
- Analysts at the CME Group expect a 72.3% chance that the Fed will raise rates by another 25 basis points next month. They also predict a 27.7% chance of 50 basis point hike, which has increased from 18.1% last week. The next Fed meeting to decide on interest rates will be held on March 21 and 22.
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