The last few weeks were all about the new spot Bitcoin ETFs. But this week, we have our eyes on Ethereum: According to Standard Chartered analysts the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) might approve spot Ether ETFs as early as May. The analysts also expect ETH could hit US$4,000 if the ETFs are approved. Meanwhile, Ethereum’s ‘Dencun’ upgrade went live on the second testnet.
Read on for the details.
Note: Market prices captured in USD at the time of sending. Explore more on Crypto.com/Price.
🕑 SEC Delays Decision on Spot Ether ETFs
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) delayed its decision timeline on BlackRock’s proposal for a spot Ethereum ETF to March 10. Standard Chartered analysts said earlier this week that they anticipate ETH could hit US$4,000 if approved, which they expect could happen as early as May this year.
📈 Tether Nears US$100B Market Cap
Tether’s USDT, the most popular stablecoin in the crypto market now boasts an all-time high US$96 billion market cap, having added over US$10 billion since late October as digital asset trading rejuvenated.
🗳️ Bitcoin ETF Options Under Discussion
The U.S. SEC said it is seeking public feedback on proposals by Cboe, Nasdaq, and NYSE to list options on Bitcoin ETFs. Crypto.com users in the U.S. can already trade options on Bitcoin with UpDown Options. Learn more here.
🐋 BTC Whales Are Boosting Holdings
Bitcoin whales have increased holdings to around US$3 billion (76,000 BTC) so far in 2024, according to data by IntoTheBlock. Whales include any entity, individual, or fund (including the ETFs) holding over 1,000 BTC.
🏁 Ethereum’s ‘Dencun’ Live on Second Testnet
Ethereum’s ‘Dencun’ upgrade is live on the second testnet. The upgrade is slated to go live on the third and final testnet (Holesky) next week, after which the developers will pencil in Dencun’s launch date on the main blockchain. Dencun will introduce Proto-Danksharding to Ethereum.
🏦 CBDCs Might Trend in 2024
The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has revealed its strategic priorities for 2024, emphasizing central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and tokenization.
For example, one of the undertakings is Project Promissa, which aims to digitize promissory notes using blockchain technology.
Chart of the Week
In the first two weeks of trading, U.S. spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have seen a total net inflow of US$731.9 million, with BlackRock’s ETF leading the pack.
Meanwhile, Grayscale’s ETF has experienced net outflows. Market commentators have opined that Grayscale’s expense ratio of 1.5%, the highest of them all, could be a factor.
“The moon rises over a new year,” writes Fionn Jordan, an illustrator from the Lake District, U.K., “and with it comes the Dragon!”
Dropping on Thursday, February 8, Jordan’s latest NFT installment, titled ‘2024 Year of the Dragon’, is the second-ever Lunar New Year collection on Crypto.com, following his 2023 drop ‘Year of the Rabbit’. Each of these spring couplets, or chūnlián, depicts a new year dragon, uniquely generated from hand-drawn traits, bringing good luck and fortune.
This drop features 🖼️ spring couplet print sets, where holders of any ‘2024 Year of the Dragon’ NFTs can claim a set of physical chūnlián depicting their auspicious draconic beast.
New Tokens for On-Chain Staking: TIA and KSM
Celestia (TIA) and Kusama (KSM) are now available for on-chain Staking in the Crypto.com App and on the Crypto.com Exchange, joining an ever-expanding list of staking options for you to choose from. With on-chain Staking, you can receive rewards of up to 12%, as often as three times a week, while securing the blockchains you love. Find out how to get started here.
New and Enhanced Crypto.com Visa Card Benefits
Now, there are more reasons to apply or upgrade your Crypto.com Visa Card in the Crypto.com App, as we’ve added new privileges to our metal card tiers. This includes up to 12 months of X.com Premium subscription rebates for our private card tiers, and up to 5% back in uncapped CRO spending rewards for a time for non-private metal card tiers. Full list of rewards and benefits here.
Crypto.com App New Token Listings
Jupiter is a decentralized exchange (DEX) aggregator on the Solana blockchain, allowing users to trade tokens at the most optimal prices across various Solana-based DEXs and DeFi platforms. As a swap aggregator, it identifies the best exchange rates and minimizes slippage for users. JUP is Jupiter’s governance token, which enables community members to participate in protocol governing and drive the ecosystem initiatives.
ZetaChain is a Proof of Stake Layer-1 blockchain and smart contract platform that focuses on interoperability. Built on Tendermint consensus and Cosmos SDK, it introduces native smart contracts for seamless cross-chain interaction and application development. ZETA is ZetaChain’s native token, which incentivizes validators, facilitates cross-chain transfers, secures the blockchain through staking, and serves as the primary currency for transaction fees.
Crypto Level Up
Liquid Staking vs. Traditional Staking
Liquid staking and traditional staking allow you to earn rewards in return for locking your tokens in a blockchain to stabilize transaction validations. However, that’s where the similarities end:
Reduced Opportunity Cost
While traditional staking locks your tokens up for a fixed amount of time, the receipt tokens in liquid staking still grant you access to your assets’ liquidity.
By being able to use your staked assets for other activities when you opt for liquid staking, you can allocate your capital more efficiently.
With that said, traditional staking has its benefits, too, including the lucrative rewards rates for certain tokens and platforms.
Learn more about liquid and traditional staking.
Any time of the year is holiday time with the Crypto.com Icy White Visa Card, as shown here by @cryptonreis.
Hashtag #CryptoIRL with your Crypto.com Visa Card on your social profiles to get featured! Your 15 minutes of fame in the #CROFam awaits you!
‘Trustless’ refers to a concept in blockchain and other decentralized systems. The term doesn’t imply there is no trust involved in the system; rather, it means participants rely on the inherent security and transparency of blockchain technology itself, instead of a central authority.In traditional systems, trust is usually placed in banks or governments to facilitate and verify transactions. However, in a trustless system, trust is distributed among participants through the use of cryptographic algorithms and consensus mechanisms.
Over US$580,000 Stolen in Coordinated Phish
In late January 2024, a group of hackers stole more than US$580,000 worth of cryptocurrency in a phish. The scammers managed to use the official email addresses of Web3 companies like Cointelegraph and WalletConnect to send malicious links, deceiving victims into claiming a fraudulent airdrop.
Avoid Getting Caught Up in Phishing Attempts With These Tips:
1. If you receive a notification about a surprise giveaway or airdrop from a company’s official email address, verify it in at least one other communication channel they have.
2. Should you be required to make any form of payment via a link in an email to participate in a giveaway or airdrop, it’s highly likely that this is a phishing attempt.
3. Never share any sensitive personal or financial information online. If a giveaway or airdrop asks for these details, do not participate in it.
4. If someone claiming to be an official company representative asks for information like your password or an OTP, do not disclose it. Organizations will never request this information.
5. Review your cryptocurrency account balances and NFT collection regularly to ensure that everything is in check, and that no suspicious transactions have been made.
That’s it for this week’s Snapshot. Want more? Find out what’s trending in the crypto world.