Bitcoin and Ether fell during afternoon trading hours in Asia on Thursday, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Asian and U.S. equities fell as investors remained cautious ahead of the U.S. employment report scheduled for Friday.

See related article: Bitcoin briefly loses its grip on US$28,000

Fast facts

  • Ether fell 1.51% to US$1,882 but maintained a weekly gain of 4.58%. The cryptocurrency is trading near a nine-month high ahead of Ethereum’s Shanghai hard fork scheduled for next Wednesday. The upgrade will allow investors to withdraw their staked ETH for the first time. Nearly 18 million ETH worth around US$33.5 billion has been staked in the network since the blockchain adopted the proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. 
  • Bitcoin fell 2.08% to US$27,974 in the 24 hours to 4:30 p.m. in Hong Kong. The world’s first cryptocurrency fell 2.22% on the weekly chart after trading above the US$28,000 mark for most of the week. 
  • Dogecoin fell 5.91% to US$0.09 to become the day’s biggest loser but still maintained a 22.18% seven-day gain in a week when Twitter changed its logo to a Shiba Inu dog, the memecoin’s mascot. The XRP token fell 3.83% to US$0.49, as the day’s second-biggest loser.
  • The global cryptocurrency market capitalization decreased by 1.97% to US$1.18 trillion in the 24 hours to 4:30 p.m. in Hong Kong, with total crypto market trading volume down by 8.91% to US$40.82 billion.
  • The Forkast 500 NFT index slid 0.70% to 4,002.64 points on the day and lost 0.04% on 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.
  • Most Asian equities were down on Thursday, with Shanghai Composite sliding 0.010% and the Shenzhen Component Index inching down 0.044%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 1.10%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.012%. Hong Kong’s financial markets will be closed from Friday to next Monday for the Easter holidays.  
  • Investors await the release of the U.S. Employment Situation report on Friday, which includes the monthly change in non-farm payrolls. Strong growth in non-farm payroll data may indicate heating inflation, which investors will analyze to gauge the Federal Reserve’s next monetary decision. The U.S. stock market will be closed on Good Friday. 
  • European bourses picked up on Thursday, as the pan-European STOXX 600 rose 0.39% and Germany’s DAX 40 gained 0.44%.
  • Gold fell 0.15% to US$2,017 per ounce to stabilize near a one-year high, following a three-day winning streak. The precious metal rose around 2.5% this week to close up on its all-time high of US$2,075 set in August 2022.
  • Investors digested new economic data from the U.S., including ADP Research Institute’s National Employment Report and the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, showing that tighter financial conditions are slowing down the economy as investors hope for the Fed to pause rate hikes next month. 

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