Crypto Market Update: cryptos bleeding after Kazakhstan unrest

By Raffaele Redi

The eye of investors is focused on protests in Eastern Europe, while traditional stock markets report mixed trading conditions

Bitcoin, Ripple and other crypto currencies on a trading screen with prices and charts                                 
The price of the leading cryptocurrencies is reaching record lows in 2022 – Photo: Shutterstock
                                

BTC and other leading cryptos continued in a downward trend on Friday in the wake of Kazakhstan protests against rising energy prices and the release of comments by Fed chairman Jerome Powell on cryptos in a press conference transcript. 

However, Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s claim that “constitutional order has been mainly restored in all regions” seems to have decelerated the decline in leading crypto prices. This follows the Kazakh government’s decision to shut down the internet, preventing cryptomining activity in the region. Its output is second only to the United States in terms of hash rate.

Major cryptocurrencies were all witnessing losses at around midday. 

The eyes of investors were focused on BTC and stablecoins after Fed chairman Powell defined cryptos as a speculative asset in a document released on 5 January, containing the content of a press conference given on 15 December. In it, Powell had suggested that stablecoins are still far from being integrated in the financial system.

Higher trading on commodities

Meanwhile, commodity prices were higher in the 24 hours following the Kazakhstan unrest.

The price of Brent was higher by 0.7% at $82.56 per barrel, with US WTI higher by 0.6% at $79.94. Gold price per ounce was $1,792.57, higher by around 0.1% in the last 24 hours.

Elsewhere, traditional stock markets were mixed during Friday early trading as Eurostat released data showing annual eurozone inflation accelerating unexpectedly in December and hitting a new peak at 5%.

Bitcoin pullback

According to Currency.com, BTC, the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation, is trading lower by 1.0% over the past 24 hours at $42,360.29 – and 11.7% down over the past seven days.

The market cap of BTC was around $801.5bn, representing less than 40% of the crypto market capitalisation, while the leading crypto’s trading volume was around 43% higher at $63.4bn in the past 24 hours.

The total crypto market capitalisation declined by $15bn in the past 24 hours at around $2.0trn, according to CoinMarketCap.

Ethereum: Buterin recipe rejected

Former Ether CEO, Vitalik Butherin’s recipe to reduce Ether high transaction costs seems to have been rejected by investors, with some seeing the challenge as difficult to achieve.

Digital silver, Ether (ETH), was trading lower by 2.5% at $3.257.06 with a market capitalisation of $386.8bn. The cryptocurrency’s trading volume was around 15% lower at $23.1bn in the past 24 hours.

Meanwhile, the most popular stablecoin, Tether (USDT) became the third-largest cryptocurrency with a market cap of $78.4bn.

After Powell’s speech and in line with major stablecoins, Binance Coin (BNB) was trading lower by 1.3% at $455.81 with a market cap of $76bn and a trading volume of $4.5bn, almost 0.4% higher in the past 24 hours.

Finally, Solana (SOL), which recently started powering NFTs and the metaverse, was trading lower by 3.7% at $141.12, with a market cap of $44bn and a trading volume of $2.7bn, higher by 1.1% in the past 24 hours, while Cardano (ADA) was trading higher by 3.3% at $1.24.

Top gainers and losers

Elsewhere, the likes of Cosmos (ATOM), Secret (SCRT) and Harmony (ONE) witnessed over a 15% increase in the past 24 hours.

On the opposite side of the coin, Nexo (NEXO), was trading down by over 4.7% in the past 24 hours.

All prices are correct as of 12:30 GMT (UTC -1).

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