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Crypto VC funding hits $30.3B in H1, Michael Saylor steps down as MicroStrategy CEO, and Voyager to return $270M worth of customer assets: Hodler’s Digest, July 31-Aug 6

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Crypto VC funding hits $30.3B in H1, Michael Saylor steps down as MicroStrategy CEO, and Voyager to return $270M worth of customer assets: Hodler’s Digest, July 31-Aug 6

Coming every Saturday, Hodler’s Digest will help you track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption and regulation highlights, leading coins, predictions and much more — a week on Cointelegraph in one link.

Top Stories This Week

Crypto fundraising hits $30.3B in H1, outpacing all of 2021: Report

A report from crypto analytics firm Messari on Tuesday showed that the crypto sector has raised $30.3 billion in funding this year, already outpacing the total for all of 2021, which was $30.2 billion. The figure was achieved via 1,199 funding rounds in the first half of the year, with $10.3 billion, more than a third of the capital, going towards the centralized finance sector. Notably, the NFT gaming sector raised more than all of decentralized finance at $4 billion. DeFi, comparatively, raised just $1.8 billion.

Michael Saylor will step down as MicroStrategy CEO but remain as executive chair

Bitcoin maxi Michael Saylor is set to step down as CEO of MicroStrategy on Aug. 8. With president Phong Le taking over as CEO, Saylor will assume his new role as executive chairman — a position that will focus almost entirely on building MicroStrategy’s Bitcoin reserves. “I believe that splitting the roles of Chairman and CEO will enable us to better pursue our two corporate strategies of acquiring and holding Bitcoin and growing our enterprise analytics software business,” he said.

Facebook’s metaverse will ‘misfire,’ says Vitalik Buterin

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin thinks that any metaverse platform coming from Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta is going to “misfire.” Although Buterin singled out Meta, his comments were focused more broadly on the sector as a whole, with him stating that “we don’t really know the definition of ‘the metaverse’ yet, it’s far too early to know what people actually want.“

Voyager to return $270M in customer funds, says it received ‘better’ offers than FTX

Bankrupt crypto lending firm Voyager Digital has been cleared by a judge in New York to return $270 million worth of customer funds, as it works to make all its customers (in theory) whole again. The firm also stated that it received several “higher and better” buyout offers than the one submitted by Sam Bankman-Fried’s Alameda Research back in July.

Meta enables Instagram NFT integration in over 100 countries

Instagram has rolled out NFT support across 100 countries in Africa, the Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and the Americas. As part of the move, users can integrate wallets from Coinbase or Dapper Labs and post their NFTs based on Ethereum, Polygon or Flow. The move sent the price of the Flow blockchain’s native token, FLOW, surging on Thursday, as it pumped 54% to hit an intraday high of $2.83.

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $23,276.79, Ether (ETH) at $1,708.47 and XRP at $0.37. The total market cap is at $1.09 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Flow (FLOW) at 44.86%, Filecoin (FIL) at 37.69% and Optimism (OP) at 25.60%.  

The top three altcoin losers of the week are Qtum (QTUM) at 16.41%, Bitcoin Gold (BTG) at 14.30% and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) at 9.63%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.

Most Memorable Quotations

“Most people think a metaverse is a virtual place, similar to the movie Ready Player One. They’re wrong. The metaverse is not a place; it’s a moment in time.”

Evan Luthra, a Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneur

“You saw decentralized markets, decentralized lending models, DeFi in general, not fall over. There was no contagion there. What you saw was poor balance sheet management from closed shop trade fee lenders.” 

Jonathon Miller, managing director at Kraken Australia

“We don’t really know the definition of ‘the metaverse’ yet, it’s far too early to know what people actually want. So anything Facebook creates now will misfire.” 

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum

“You want to encourage people to have some faith in the future and make decisions that make the delay of gratification morally laudable and intelligent. Inflation hurts those people.”

Jordan Peterson, clinical psychologist

“Regardless of how those funds are stored — locked up in a smart contract or with a centralized custodian — that storage point becomes a target.” 

Chainalysis, blockchain analytics firm

“Of the billions of people and numerous institutional investors on the planet, a large number will lack the technical wherewithal, workflows or interest in holding their own private keys.”

Will Peck, head of digital assets at WisdomTree

Prediction of the Week 

Metaverse market share to surpass $50 billion by 2026, says new report

Technology research and advisory firm Technavio published a report on Metaverse market finance that estimates the sector to have a market share value of $50.37 billion by 2026. The firm estimated that the market will grow by 21% annually over the next four years, and the prediction doesn’t appear to be too far off the mark so far, as 2022’s growth is projected to hit 20.11%.

FUD of the Week 

$2B in crypto stolen from cross-chain bridges this year: Chainalysis

According to a report from blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis, cross-chain bridge hacking has resulted in $2 billion in losses across 13 different attacks in 2022 so far. Chainalysis suggested that bridges are often targets because they “feature a central storage point of funds that back the ‘bridged’ assets on the receiving blockchain,” which have become a point of target for hackers.

Solana wallets ‘compromised and abandoned’ as users warned of scam solutions

Solana users have been urged to abandon their hot wallets and move their funds to cold storage this week after a significant exploit siphoned an estimated $8 million from roughly 8,000 compromised wallets. The hack was reportedly carried out via a security breach in Web3 wallet provider Slope’s network and also affected Phantom wallet users.

Blockchain security firm warns of new MetaMask phishing campaign

Blockchain security firm Halborn sent out a warning on Thursday regarding a new phishing campaign targeting MetaMask wallet users. The active phishing campaign uses authentic-looking emails with MetaMask branding that urge users to comply with Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations and verify their wallets, essentially tricking them into giving out their passphrases.

Best Cointelegraph Features

Cleaning up crypto: How much enforcement is too much?

Many blockchain companies now believe that regulation is inevitable, but there’s a growing debate over where to draw the line between protecting users and strangling the lifeblood out of the industry — or forcing it outside the United States.

NFT communities greenlight Web3 films: A decentralized future for fans and Hollywood

The film industry is one of the most centralized and traditional of them all. Just a handful of movie studios and streaming conglomerates control the lion’s share of the global film market.

What Kazakhstan’s new tax regime means for the crypto mining industry

New amendments recently signed by the country’s president could bolster the energy grid refit while keeping overall prices relatively moderate.

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4 On-Chain Metrics Show the Bitcoin Price Is Primed for Bullish Explosion

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4 On-Chain Metrics Show the Bitcoin Price Is Primed for Bullish Explosion

Amid recent macroeconomic extremes, Bitcoin has maintained a quiet stance, almost eerie for its HODLers. Nonetheless, its hashrate and accumulation are soaring — what could this mean for its price?

Bitcoin has been consolidating in a narrow range between $18,800 and $20,200 since the mid-Sept price fall. In volatile markets like cryptocurrency, similar quiet periods of consolidation are rare. 

Recent Glassnode findings show that the current BTC price action resembles both pre-crash November 2018 and pre-rally March 2019. Despite price downturns, mining and accumulation statistics are improving. Let’s look into what this means for the health of the network.

Bitcoin hashrate makes new ATH 

Last week, the Bitcoin hashrate made a new all-time high of 242 exahashes per second.

Source: Glassnode

In the chart below, we can see that Bitcoin’s longer-term, slower hash ribbon was once again overtaken by the faster ribbon, indicating improved mining conditions in late August. Since the price saw no major uptick during this time, the rise in hashrate was likely due to more efficient mining hardware and more mining rigs working in general.

Source: Glassnode

Historically, these hash ribbon moving average swaps precede price gains. Historically, when the hash-rate drops and subsequently recovers, major BTC price bottoms have been made. 

Is a price bottom in?

Apart from the hashrate, Bitcoin accumulation levels also reached a 7-year high. CryptoQuant data shows that 6-month-old and older Bitcoins now make up 74% of the realized cap. During the 2019 and 2015 bottoms, this score sat at 70% and 77%, respectively.

Source: CryptoQuant 

Lastly, for the first time in this cycle, the percentage of supply in loss has reached the 50% level.

CryptoQuant data shows that the price bottoms during previous cycles normally occur when the percentage of supply in loss reaches 50% or more.

Source: CryptoQuant

The current data shows the highest percentage of losses at 52% on the daily chart, 50.4% on the weekly (7DMA), and 48% on the monthly (30DMA). 

While quite a few metrics suggest that BTC should be near a bottom, the overall momentum will likely still depend on macroeconomic conditions as well as its correlation with the Nasdaq and S&P 500. 

Disclaimer

All the information contained on our website is published in good faith and for general information purposes only. Any action the reader takes upon the information found on our website is strictly at their own risk.

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Bitcoin price sees first October spike above $20K as daily gains hit 5%

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Bitcoin price sees first October spike above $20K as daily gains hit 5%

BTC price action sees a new October peak amid a declining U.S. dollar and a successful prior day’s trading for U.S. equities.

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Bitcoin price sees first October spike above K as daily gains hit 5%

Bitcoin (BTC) saw its first trip above $20,000 on Oct. 4 as traders expected familiar resistance to cap gains.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

Multi-week dollar lows fuel Bitcoin bulls

Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView showed BTC/United States dollar climbing prior to the Wall Street open, up over 5% in 24 hours.

The pair had shaken off macroeconomic concerns at the start of the week, with trouble at Credit Suisse and the escalating Russia-Ukraine conflict failing to slow performance.

Now, the short-term analysis focused on a run potentially topping out closer to $21,000 — as was the case late last month, as sell-side pressure at that level remained significant.

“20500-21000 is a sell zone. If price gets there, which should, don’t be too bullish,” popular trader Il Capo of Crypto told Twitter followers on the day.

Razzoorn, an analyst at international trade group The Birb Nest, noted that the current charge was Bitcoin’s fifth attempt at escaping a major liquidity cloud in several weeks.

Despite the potentially limited upside opportunity, Bitcoin rallied in line with a broader risk asset tide which saw United States equities finish noticeably higher the day prior.

At the same time, the U.S. dollar suffered, the U.S. dollar index (DXY) extending losses to approach 111 points and threaten support in place since mid-September.

U.S. dollar index (DXY) 1-day candle chart. Source: TradingView

“Up the market goes,” a more optimistic Michaël van de Poppe, CEO and founder of trading platform Eight, continued:

“Flipping $19,500 for support. Now, if range-high at $19,600 holds for Bitcoin, I assume we’ll continue towards $22,400.”

Altcoins attempt to change sticky trend

Across major altcoins, it was Ether (ETH) and Ripple (XRP) leading daily performance at the time of writing. 

Related: CoinShares’ Butterfill suggests ’continued hesitancy’ among investors

ETH/USD traded above $1,350, still yet to break out of its sideways trend in place for several weeks since major losses entered during the post-Merge breakdown.

ETH/USD 1-day candle chart (Binance). Source: TradingView

XRP, on the other hand, faced a more stubborn band of resistance after prior gains, bouncing off multi-week support just below $0.45.

XRP/USD 1-day candle chart (Binance). Source: TradingView

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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McDonald’s starts to accept Bitcoin and Tether in Swiss town

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McDonald’s starts to accept Bitcoin and Tether in Swiss town

The global fast food chain is among the first to participate in a crypto-friendly experiment in the town of Lugano.

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McDonald’s starts to accept Bitcoin and Tether in Swiss town

Multinational fast food chain McDonald’s started to accept Bitcoin (BTC) as a payment method in the 63,000-populated city of Lugano in Italian Switzerland, which is becoming a hotspot for crypto adoption in Western Europe. 

A one-minute video of ordering food on McDonald’s digital kiosk and then paying for it at the regular register with the help of a mobile app was uploaded on Twitter by Bitcoin Magazine on Oct. 3. The Tether (USDT)  logo could be spotted next to the Bitcoin symbol on the credit cash machine, which is not surprising, as in March 2022 the city of Lugano announced it would accept Bitcoin, Tether and the LVGA token as a legal tender.

On March 3, 2022, the city signed a memorandum of understanding with Tether Operations Limited, launching the so-called “Plan B.” According to this plan, Tether has created two funds — the first one is a $106 million, or 100 million Swiss francs, investment pool for crypto startups, and the second is around $3 million, or 3 million Swiss francs, attempt to encourage the adoption of crypto for shops and businesses across the city.

In addition to allowing Lugano residents to pay their taxes using crypto, the project will extend payments to parking tickets, public services and tuition fees for students. More than 200 shops and businesses in the area are also expected to accept crypto payments for goods and services.

Related: Swiss Post’s banking arm developing in-house crypto custody platform

Speaking to Cointelegraph in June, Paolo Ardoino, chief technology officer of Tether and Bitfinex, claimed that Plan B “is going great,” announcing a two-week educational activity on blockchain and cryptocurrencies in the city.

In September 2021 El Salvador became the first country in the world to allow using Bitcoin as a legal tender. Since that time, McDonald’s has been accepting Bitcoin at all its 19 outlets in the country.

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