Bitcoin and Ether rose in Monday afternoon trade in Asia, along with most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Polygon’s Matic token was the only loser, while Dogecoin gained the most. Asian equity markets were mixed as investors assessed Friday’s U.S. jobs data while awaiting key inflation figures to be released later this week.
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- Bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, rose 1.36% to US$28,301 in the 24 hours to 4 p.m. in Hong Kong, bringing its weekly gains to 1.23%, according to CoinMarketCap data.
- Ethereum gained 1.24% to US$1,859, ahead of its Shapella Upgrade on Wednesday, which is expected to lower gas fees for developers and allow investors to withdraw their staked Ether.
- “The Beacon Chain and Ethereum have been working smoothly as one since last year, and the Shapella Upgrade is set to enable new features based on the new architecture,” Chen Zhuling, founder and chief executive of crypto staking provider RockX, said in a statement shared with Forkast.
- “While some short-term market volatility is to be expected, the long-term benefits to the ecosystem are substantial, as Ethereum’s capacity to handle more transactions per second increases, transaction costs decrease, and the security and efficiency of smart contracts improve,” Zhuling added.
- Dogecoin led gains at 1.44% to US$0.08287, bringing its weekly gains to 6.15%. Polygon’s Matic was the only coin among the top 10 cryptos to drop, diving 0.09% to US$1.10 in 24 hours, although it is still up 0.32% on the week.
- The global crypto market capitalization rose 1.02% to US$1.18 trillion, while the total crypto market volume gained 4.09% to US$29.18 billion in the last 24 hours.
- The Forkast 500 NFT index fell 0.24% to 3,942.37 points during the day and 2.93% during the week. The index is a proxy measure of the performance of the global NFT market and includes 500 eligible smart contracts on any given day.
- Asian markets were mixed on Monday, after U.S. jobs data on Friday revealed that nonfarm payrolls increased by 236,000 jobs in March, indicating that the Federal Reserve may again raise interest rates at its meeting on May 3. Currently, interest rates in the world’s biggest economy are 4.75% to 5%, the highest since June 2006.
- The Shanghai Composite dropped 0.37%, while the Shenzhen Component Index lost 0.80%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 gained 0.42%, and South Korea’s Kospi strengthened 0.87%.
- The U.S. dollar index slid 0.2% to trade above 102 on Monday, a near one-week high, after the U.S. non-farm payrolls report signaled a tight labor market and supported speculation for another interest rate hike in May.
- The euro rose 0.14% to hover above US$1.09 on Monday, close to its two-month high on April 4, as investors expect another interest rate hike from the European Central Bank (ECB). Last week, Klass Knot, a member of the ECB governing council, said he was unsure whether rates should rise by 25 or 50 basis points.
- Gold retreated 0.43% to US$1,999 per ounce as the dollar gained more ground.
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