1. Market Wrap: Traders Ratchet Up Derivatives Bets as Bitcoin Mounts Rally
Bitcoin’s funding rates are rising, a sign traders are willing to take more risk in betting on a fresh rally.
Bitcoin (BTC) trading around $58,800 as of 20:17 UTC (4:17 p.m. ET). Climbing 2.1% over the previous 24 hours.
Bitcoin’s 24-hour range: $57,069-$59,380
Bitcoin has climbed on four of the past five days, and the price is now pushing back toward $60,000 for the first time in a couple weeks.
“It wasn’t with the fanfare and fireworks, but instead just a standard grind higher, helped in part by the continued positive adoption news flow,” Matt Blom, head of sales and trading with the digital-asset firm Equos, wrote Tuesday in an email.
Several stories reinforced the theme of growing mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies, echoing the takeaway from Visa’s announcement on Monday.
PayPal on Tuesday announced a Checkout service that will allow bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH) and litecoin (LTC) to be seamlessly converted into U.S. dollars or other fiat currencies when making purchases, the same as a credit card or a debit card would work inside a PayPal wallet.
Blockstream, the bitcoin development company, is launching a token tied to the company’s bitcoin-mining production, redeemable in bitcoin.
Derivatives exchange Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) will launch smaller-sized bitcoin “micro” futures contracts in May, potentially expanding the number of people who bet on the future price of the leading cryptocurrency.
Tether, the company behind the biggest dollar-linked stablecoin, USDT, published an attestation verifying that it had $35 billion in assets backing a similar amount of its USDT token last month. Some analysts had warned that an unraveling of trust in tether could rattle the bitcoin market.
“Bitcoin has tentative resistance at the $60,000 level, but momentum from yesterday’s Visa news should be enough to keep the bullish trend going strong,” Edward Moya, senior market analyst for the foreign-exchange broker Oanda, wrote Tuesday in an email.
Bitcoin Funding Rates Climb, Suggesting Optimism Over Fresh Rally
Chart shows BTC price and perpetual futures funding rate.
2. Michael Jordan Joins $305M Investment in Firm Behind NBA Top Shot
Dapper Labs’ buzzy NFT platform has generated over $500 million in sales since launch.
Dapper Labs announced a $305 million funding round Tuesday from another batch of National Basketball Association stars and a venture capital firm backing its runaway hit, NBA Top Shot.
Kevin Durant, Michael Jordan, the investment firm Coatue and a deep bench of 30 athletes plus the rapper 2 Chainz have piled into the non-fungible token (NFT) firm, the startup said. Citing a person with knowledge of the situation, USA Today reported the funding round places Dapper’s current valuation at $2.6 billion.
The mega-round comes as Dapper’s NBA Top Shot platform continues to monetize fans’ growing demand for digital collectibles. Sitting atop Dapper’s Flow blockchain, the card-like crypto platform has raked in nearly $500 million in sales and seen its secondary trading market eclipse $2 million in volume almost daily.
While the hype remains centered on NBA Top Shot, Dapper Labs signaled in a press release it intends to bring yet more digital collectibles to Flow through “experiences” by Warner Media Group and UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship), among others. More experiences are coming this year, the startup said. The company has raised $357 million to date.
3. Tesla Just Helped Patch a Bug in This Open Source Bitcoin Payment Processor
The carmaker’s assistance to BTCPay Server is another sign of its serious commitment to bitcoin, beyond holding it in its treasury and accepting it as payment.
Tesla just contributed to Bitcoin open source software.
The car maker disclosed a bug in the open-source Bitcoin payment processor and wallet BTCPay Server, and it also helped the project’s team patch the flaw.
The electric vehicle and renewables company informed BTCPay’s team of the bug after reviewing the project’s GitHub last week. It affects users who boot BTCPay from “Docker Deployment, have a configured email server and enabled registration for users in Server Settings > Policies,” according to a post on BTCPay’s GitHub that included a software patch.
The team wrote in the post that more information on the bug would be disclosed in BTCPay’s next major release.
“We want to thank @teslamotors for filing a responsible disclosure, helping us with remediation, and handling the situation professionally. We also want to thank Qaiser Abbas, an independent web-security researcher, for an additional responsible vulnerability disclosure that was handled in this release,” BTCPay’s team wrote in the software release fixing the bug.
4. Galaxy Digital Prepares for US Listing in 2021, Names New CFO
“We believe our industry is at an inflection point as we participate in a once in a lifetime secular shift,” said CEO Mike Novogratz.
Canada-based digital asset merchant bank Galaxy Digital (TSX: GLXY) said it is actively preparing for a U.S. listing after reporting positive Q4 earnings Tuesday.
In a press release, the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) listed-firm founded by Mike Novogratz said it will list in the U.S. in the second half of the year. It also has named Alex Ioffe as the company’s new CFO, effective April 1, replacing Ash Prithipaul. Prithipaul is stepping down to spend more time with his family, the company said.
The company reported its Q4 net comprehensive income, excluding non-controlling interests, rose 1,175% to $335.7 million, from a loss on the same basis of $31.2 million in the year-earlier period. Galaxy attributed the improvement mostly to realized and unrealized gains on digital assets and on investments.
5. NFL Player Taylor Rapp Is Launching an NFT to Fight Anti-Asian Hate
“I really hope the NFL sees this and the important message that is behind it in why I’m actually doing it,” Rapp said.
A young defensive back with the Los Angeles Rams is the latest pro athlete launching a non-fungible token (NFT), hoping to use the sale to raise money, and awareness, to combat the wave of anti-Asian hate crimes this year.
Taylor Rapp, the free safety entering his third season in the National Football League, completely lacks the star power of a Rob Gronkowski or a Patrick Mahomes, marquee players who leveraged their splashy brands into multimillion-dollar NFT sales earlier this month.
But the backfield starter, who said he’s been hustling with his co-creators for three weeks on their slapdash NFTs, told us he hopes to make up the difference by focusing his sale on its anti-racist cause. He’s the only Chinese-American active in the NFL at a time when reports of hate crimes against Asians are surging.
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March 31, 2021