June 30, 2023
EU Moves Ahead With Push to Create Digital Euro for Payments
📰 News Organizations
EU Moves Ahead With Push to Create Digital Euro for Payments. The European Union has presented its vision for a digital euro aimed at facilitating payments, excluding its use as an investment tool. While the EU has proposed a legal framework, most of the implementation details are to be determined by the European Central Bank.*
Bitcoin Approaches One-Year High As Fidelity Eyes Spot ETF. Bitcoin nears its one-year high as Fidelity reportedly prepares to file for a spot ETF for the digital asset. Following in the footsteps of BlackRock, Fidelity's potential ETF filing indicates a growing interest* in the cryptocurrency market.
EDX Crypto Exchange Shifts Custodian from Paxos to Anchorage. EDX Markets, a newly launched crypto exchange supported by Citadel Securities, Fidelity Digital Assets, and Charles Schwab Corp., has decided to partner with Anchorage Digital* instead of Paxos as its custodian, following final negotiations.
First Leveraged Bitcoin Futures ETF Launched Tuesday. The Volatility Shares 2x Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITX) was launched on the Chicago Board Options (CBOE) BZX Exchange, becoming the first leveraged Bitcoin futures ETF to gain approval from the U.S. SEC, providing investors with indirect exposure to Bitcoin* without direct ownership.
The top 2 stocks in the S&P 500 (Apple & Microsoft) now represent a combined 14.4% of the index, the highest weighting for any two companies with data going back to 1980. Source.
The US Money Supply increased in May for the first time since last July, ending a record streak of 9 consecutive monthly declines. Still down 4% year-over-year but perhaps this marks a change in trend. Source.
MicroStrategy has acquired an additional 12,333 BTC for ~$347.0 million at an average price of $28,136 per #bitcoin. As of 6/27/23 MicroStrategy hodls 152,333 $BTC acquired for ~$4.52 billion at an average price of $29,668 per bitcoin. Source.
Initial jobless claims for the week ended June 24 fell by 26K to 239K vs. 266K consensus and 265K prior (revised from 264K), the U.S. Department of Labor said Thursday. Source.
By slight margin, core capital goods orders are back to outpacing core capital goods shipments ... typically a strong cyclical signal (but spread is not yet firmly in expansionary territory). Source.
📓 Online Publications
Cathie Wood’s ARK Reportedly ‘First in Line’ For a Spot Bitcoin ETF. 21Shares, ARK and CBOE are first in line because their next SEC decision date is Aug. 13, 2023, and there is no date yet for the other 19b-4 applications like the one from BlackRock. Meanwhile, ARK Invest amends its application and adds surveillance agreement similar to Blackrock.
Mastercard Launches Beta Test of Tokenized Bank Deposits in the UK. Mastercard is setting up a testbed in the UK, dubbed the Multi-Token Network (MTN), which will begin by exploring tokenized bank deposits, inviting various banks and financial institutions to participate in the beta mode this summer.
CFTC Technology Advisory Board to Discuss DeFi and DAOs in July Meeting. The CFTC's technology advisory board will address key topics such as the Ooki DAO case, exploring the liability of decentralized autonomous organizations, and establish subcommittees, including one dedicated to digital assets and blockchain technology.
Staked ETH Surpasses 23 Million, Representing Almost 20% of ETH Supply. Analytics firm Nansen reports that over 23.3 million Ether, equivalent to $43.1 billion, has been staked as of June 27, accounting for nearly 20% of the total supply of ETH, while Solana currently maintains a staking ratio of 70.58%.
Coinbase Seeks Dismissal of SEC Lawsuit, Citing Departure from Legal Frameworks. Coinbase has filed a motion to dismiss the SEC's lawsuit, arguing that the regulatory agency's application of securities laws to digital tokens deviates significantly from established legal frameworks, asserting that the claims should be dismissed.
Ledger Introduces Institutional-Grade Trading Network. Crypto wallet provider Ledger introduces the Ledger Enterprise Tradelink network, an enterprise-grade trading platform aimed at institutions, fulfilling their risk management and regulatory requirements, with partner exchanges and brokers such as Crypto.com, Bitstamp, and Huobi already on board for testing.
DAI Relies Less on USDC as MakerDAO Expands Bond Holdings. USDC's collateral support for DAI has decreased to under 10%, with real-world assets accounting for 36% of DAI's backing, primarily short-term U.S. Treasury bonds. Ether stands as the second-largest collateral at 11.4%, and Lido's stETH represents 9.8% of DAI's backing.
Metaverse Projects Receive 44% of 2023 Web3 Investments. A recent report by DappRadar reveals that venture capital firms have invested $707 million into metaverse projects, constituting 44% of all web3 investments during the first half of 2023, indicating significant ongoing funding and development within the metaverse space.
Regional and Midsized US Banks Opt to Sell Loan Portfolios for Cash Generation. In an effort to boost their cash reserves and prepare for potential challenges, regional and midsized US banks are actively engaging in the sale of their loan portfolios, following recent failures of Silicon Valley Bank and First Republic. Source(2:42)
Wall Street Shares Volatile as Central Bankers Warn of Prolonged Rate Increases. Amidst a conference attended by central bankers, including Federal Reserve chair Jay Powell and Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey, Wall Street shares experienced fluctuations as these policymakers asserted their commitment to maintaining higher interest rates until inflation is brought back to its target level. Source(1:53)
EV Startups Suffer Amid Supply Chain Challenges. Several EV startups, including Lordstown, Lucid, and Nikola, went public via SPAC in 2021 but are currently facing significant declines in their stock prices due to pandemic-related supply chain issues. Lordstown shares have dropped to $2.29 from their peak of $400 per share, while Rivian has experienced a drastic 90% decrease in its stock value. Source(4:01)
Global Monetary Leaders Revealed a Sense of Uncertainty. As influential figures such as central bank governors and the Chairman of the Federal Reserve convened, discussions on monetary policy highlighted the challenges posed by the current volatile environment. Brent Donnelly says that the rapid pace of current developments has led to a higher margin for error compared to the previous decade of low volatility, making policymaking more challenging for central bankers. Source(2:08)
Meta's LLaMa Model Being Leaked on Purpose. There are rumors that Meta's LLaMa Model was leaked on purpose to level the playing field in the Artificial Intelligence industry. Meta's model leak gave the power to the world to create their own models and not totally rely on OpenAI, Google, or Anthropic, says Perplexity CEO Aravind Srinivas. Source(39:53)
Population In The US Is Declining. The U.S. is experiencing a declining population with a fertility rate of 1.78 children per woman, signaling a shrinking population trend. While immigration presents a potential remedy, it brings along its own set of challenges. Projections suggest that demographic changes will persist, resulting in an increasingly aged population in the forthcoming decades. Source(10:08)