Weekly Newsletter – 21 Apr 2023

A Setback for Bitcoin, A Chance for Altcoins?

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Weekly Summary

  • Bitcoin Slips After a Sudden Sell-off and Release of UK Inflation Data
  • ‘Pepe the Frog’ Meme Coins Rocket as Crypto Twitter Moves on from DOGE Obsession
  • CME Group Set to Expand ETH, BTC Derivatives Product Expiries
  • SUI Network Sets Date for Mainnet Launch and Plan for Token Allocation
  • Starbucks Introduces a New NFT Collection on the Polygon Network

Industry Stories

Bitcoin Slips After a Sudden Sell-off and Release of UK Inflation Data: Bitcoin dropped below $30k on Wednesday after a massive sell order on Binance and UK hot inflation data, according to Coindesk, now hovering near $29k. The fall caught traders who were betting on an increase off guard, while ETH followed a similar pattern to drop below $2,000, putting the end to the post-Shanghai gain. DeFi tokens were also in the red, including Uniswap’s UNI and Aave’s AAVE, which sank 6% and 7%, respectively. Increasing regulatory scrutiny continued with the SEC reopening a proposal from last year targeting DeFi exchanges for regulation.

PEPE Meme Coins Rocket as Crypto Twitter Moves on From DOGE: Meme-inspired cryptocurrency tokens, particularly those linked to the internet meme Pepe the Frog, are gaining traction among Crypto Twitter traders, according to reports. The Pepe (PEPE) token, launched on Sunday, has seen its market capitalisation reach as high as $33m on Tuesday morning, with trading volumes of $30m on Uniswap over the past three days. Although the tokens are intended to be a joke and have no connection to the original Pepe meme, professional investors have previously predicted that meme coins will remain an integral part of the crypto ecosystem.

CME Group Set to Expand ETH, BTC Derivatives Product Expiries: Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) Group is expanding its crypto derivatives offerings, including bitcoin and ether futures contracts, to help clients manage short-term price risk in the face of heightened market volatility. The derivatives marketplace is adding options expiries Monday through Friday, including micro-sized bitcoin and ether futures options on Tuesdays and Thursdays. In the first quarter of 2023, average daily open interest for CME’s bitcoin futures and options reached an all-time high of 24,094 contracts.

SUI Network Sets Date for Mainnet Launch and Plan for Token Allocation: Sui Network, a PoS-powered layer-1 blockchain that aims to provide instant settlement, has announced that it will launch its mainnet on May 3, 2023. The SUI token serves four primary functions, including staking for PoS consensus mechanism, paying gas fees, acting as a medium of exchange, and participating in on-chain voting. Instead of an airdrop, SUI schedules its token general sale for April 23, raising a controversy among the community. Despite significant potential, the network faces stiff competition to gain wider popularity and adoption.

Starbucks Introduces a New NFT Collection on the Polygon Network: Starbucks is releasing its second paid NFT collection on the Polygon network, further expanding its web3 initiatives after its first announcement in May 2022. The collection consists of 5,000 “The First Store Collection Stamps,” priced at $100 each, with a limit of one stamp per person for all collectors. Buyers with two or more unique “Journey Stamps,” Starbucks’ previous foray into NFTs, will get early access to the First Store collection. The move follows Starbucks’ first NFT collection, “Siren Collection,” which reportedly sold out in under 20 minutes last month.

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