Značka: tether

USDC flips Tether on the Ethereum network

Circle’s USD Coin (USDC) has reached a major milestone by surpassing Tether (USDT) in total supply on the Ethereum network.USDC’s current supply on Ethereum as of writing is 40.06 billion tokens, just ahead of USDT’s supply of 39.82 billion. Tether has been the most popular stablecoin since at least 2016, after originally sharing the market with BitUSD and NuBits (USNBT) stablecoins when it launched in late 2014. At that time, USDT ran on Omni. As the latter two fell into obscurity due to losing their dollar peg and shedding users, USDC emerged in 2018 as a more transparent and more regulated competitor to Tether, which has been under a cloud for years due to doubts over its backing. Although USDT is still the most popular stablecoin with a total supply of 78.5 billion, nearly 50% of the supply or 38.7 billion tokens, is on the Tron network. USDT can also be found on BSC, Solana, Huobi ECO Chain, Avalanche, Polygon, and 13 other chains or layer 2 solutions. The current total supply for USDC is 45.7 tokens across 21 chains or layer-two solutions.Doubts over Tether’s backing has caused its public image to decline over the years. Controversy has plagued the company over how the stablecoin is collateralized and how its reserve funds are managed. The issuance of two Consolidated Reserves Reports about Tether’s financial reserves from accounting firm Moore Cayman in 2021 did little to quell the doubters. In its latest financial report, Tether revealed that it holds $30.8 billion in unspecific commercial paper in addition to other assets backing USDT. Circle has been more transparent about its reserves, though not to the extent some critics demand. In Aug. 2021, Coinbase President Emilie Choi said that the USDC reserves backing the second largest stablecoin in the market would shift entirely to cash and US Treasury bonds. This did indeed happen by Oct. 27 2021 according to an Independent Accountant’s Report done by Grant Thornton.Coinbase is a close partner with Circle, a digital payments service, which helped launch USDC in Oct. 2018. Circle is backed by Bitmain, China Everbright Bank, and eight others.It has been supportive of efforts to solidify a regulatory framework for all stablecoins. Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire supported a Nov. 2021 Biden Administration proposal to treat stablecoin issuers similarly to banks. Allaire also attended a Congressional hearing with several top crypto industry leaders in Dec. 2021 to discuss policy direction with the Financial Services Committee.Centralized stablecoins USDT, USDC, and BUSD are currently the top three in their category, however decentralized stablecoin options have begun to proliferate. Related: Hong Kong Monetary Authority aims to oversee stablecoin reservesTerraUSD (UST) is the fourth largest stablecoin, but is the fastest growing since Nov. 2021. Since then, it has surpassed Magic Internet Money (MIM) and DAI (DAI), and achieved a $10.7 billion market cap.

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Bitcoin price can’t find its footing, but BTC fundamentals inspire confidence in traders

Bitcoin’s (BTC) sudden crash on Jan. 10 caused the price to trade below $40,000 for the first time in 110 days and this was a wake-up call to leveraged traders. $1.9 billion worth of long (buy) futures contracts were liquidated that week, causing the morale among traders to plunge.The crypto “Fear & Greed” index, which ranges from 0 “extreme fear” to 100 “greed” reached 10 on Jan. 10, the lowest level it has been since the Mar. 2020 crash. The indicator measures traders’ sentiment using historical volatility, market momentum, volume, Bitcoin dominance and social media.As usual, the panic turned out to be a buying opportunity because the total crypto market capitalization rose by 13.5%, going from a $1.85 trillion bottom to $2.1 trillion in less than three days. Currently, investors seem to be digesting this week’s economic data that shows United States December 2021 retail sales going down by 1.9% compared to the previous month.Investors have reason to worry about stagflation, a scenario where inflation accelerates despite the lack of economic growth. However, even if this eventually proves that Bitcoin’s digital scarcity is a positive characteristic, markets will still take shelter with whatever asset is deemed safe. Thus, the first wave will potentially be damaging for cryptocurrencies.Top weekly winners and losers on Jan. 17. Source: NomicsBitcoin price was flat over the past seven days, effectively underperforming the altcoin market’s 7% gain. Part of this unusual movement can be explained by layer-1 decentralized applications platforms showing a positive performance that was driven by Fantom (FTM), Cardano (ADA), Near Protocol (NEAR) and Harmony (ONE).Loopring (LRC), a zkRollup open protocol for decentralized exchanges on Ethereum, presented the worst performance of the week. The DEX volume using the protocol peaked at $30 million per day in early December 2021, but is now near $6 million. Meanwhile, Dfinity (ICP) and Chainlink (LINK) are adjusting after a 40% or higher rally in the first 10 days of 2022.Tether’s premium and the futures premium held up wellThe OKEx Tether (USDT) premium or discount measures the difference between China-based peer-to-peer (P2P) trades and the official U.S. dollar. Figures above 100% indicate excessive demand for cryptocurrency investing. On the other hand, a 5% discount usually indicates heavy selling activity.OKEx USDT peer-to-peer premium vs. USD. Source: OKExThe Tether indicator bottomed at a 3% discount on Dec. 31, which is slightly bearish but not alarming. However, this metric has held a decent 2% discount over the past week, signaling no panic selling from China-based traders.To further prove that the crypto market structure has held, traders should analyze the CME’s Bitcoin futures contracts premium. That metric analyzes the difference between longer-term futures contracts to the current spot price in regular markets.Whenever this indicator fades or turns negative, it is an alarming red flag. This situation is also known as backwardation and indicates that bearish sentiment is present.BTC CME 2-month forward contract premium vs. Bitcoin/USD. Source: TradingViewThese fixed-month contracts usually trade at a slight premium, indicating that sellers request more money to withhold settlements for longer. As a result, futures should trade at a 0.5% to 2% premium in healthy markets, a situation known as contango.Notice how the indicator flipped negative on Dec. 9 as Bitcoin traded below $49,000 but it still managed to sustain a slightly positive number. This shows that institutional traders display a lack of confidence, although it is not yet a bearish structure.Considering that the aggregate cryptocurrency market capitalization is down 9.5% to date, the market structure held rather nicely. The CME futures premium would have gone negative if there had been excessive demand for short-sellers. Unless these fundamentals change significantly, there is not yet sufficient information available that would support calls for a sub-$40,000 Bitcoin price.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Hong Kong Monetary Authority aims to oversee stablecoin reserves

Hong Kong’s central bank, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), wants to supervise stablecoin issuance and reserves management.HKMA published a discussion paper on Jan. 12 regarding cryptocurrencies and stablecoins, in which it provided its views on how the industry should be regulated in Hong Kong.In the 34-page long consultation document, the HKMA paid special attention to “payment-related stablecoins,” pointing out that the market capitalization of all stablecoins hit $150 billion in December, accounting for 5% of the entire crypto market. The regulator added that all existing stablecoins are “mostly asset-linked and predominantly pegged” to the United States dollar, including stablecoins like Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC).“The rapid development of crypto-assets, particularly stablecoins, is a topic of keen attention in the international regulatory community as it presents possible risks regarding monetary and financial stability,” HKMA said.In order to effectively handle associated risks, HKMA laid out eight major policy directions, proposing to become a single regulator to supervise entities involved in both regulating and running operations like issuing stablecoins and managing their reserves. The authority also wants to regulate stablecoin transactions’ validation processes, private key storage management and executing transactions.“We encourage current or prospective players in the stablecoins ecosystem to respond to this paper and submit relevant views to us, so that we could take the feedback into account when formulating the regulatory framework,” HKMA wrote. The regulator expects to finalize its next steps as soon as possible and introduce new regulations by 2023 or 2024.Related: Hong Kong-based Coinsuper allegedly blocks customers’ withdrawalsHKMA is not the only financial regulator concerned about stablecoin risks and planning steps to regulate the growing industry. In November 2021, the U.S. President’s Working Group on Financial Markets issued a report on possible “stablecoin runs” and “payment system risks.” The U.S. Treasury subsequently hinted at new stablecoin-focused laws in December.

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Ethereum white paper predicted DeFi but missed NFTs: Vitalik Buterin

Rounding up the last decade, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin revisited his predictions made over the years, showcasing a knack for being right about abstract ideas than on-production software development issues. Buterin started the Twitter thread by addressing his article dated Jul. 23, 2013 in which he highlighted Bitcoin’s (BTC) key benefits — internationality and censorship resistance. Buterin foresaw Bitcoin’s potential in protecting the citizens’ buying power in countries such as Iran, Argentina, China and Africa. However, Buterin also noticed a rise in stablecoin adoption as he saw Argentinian businesses operating in Tether (USDT). He backed up his decade-old ideas around the negative impacts of Bitcoin regulation.My views today: sure, Bitcoin’s decentralization would let it still *survive* under a super-hostile regulatory climate, but it could not *thrive*. Successful censorship resistance strategy requires a combination of technological robustness and public legitimacy.— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) January 1, 2022The entrepreneur still believes that “the internet of money should not cost more than 5 cents per transaction” and highlighted Ethereum’s continued efforts to improve the blockchain’s scalability capabilities.5. I should also add that the core *idea* of sharding has survived unscathed.Blockchain 1.0: each node downloads everything, have consensusBitTorrent: each node downloads only a few things, but no consensusIdeal: BitTorrent-like efficiency but with blockchain-like consensus— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) January 1, 2022

“I liked altcoins before altcoins were cool,” added Buterin citing an article where he based this claim via three arguments: different chains optimize for different goals, costs of having many chains are low and need of an alternative in case the core development team is wrong. On the flipside, Buterin backtracked on his support for Bitcoin Cash (BCH), stating that communities formed around a rebellion, even if they have a good cause, often have a hard time long term, adding that “they value bravery over competence and are united around resistance rather than a coherent way forward.”11. Applications envisioned in the Ethereum whitepaper:https://t.co/6HCoO2CSW8* ERC20-style tokens* Algorithmic stablecoins* Domain name systems (like ENS)* Decentralized file storage and computing* DAOs* Wallets with withdrawal limits* Oracles* Prediction markets— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) January 1, 2022

“A lot correct (basically predicted “DeFi”), though incentivized file storage + compute hasn’t taken off that much (yet?), and of course I completely missed NFTs.”Concluding the findings, Buterin supported the instincts that helped him correct mistakes early on, stating: “On tech, I was more often right on abstract ideas than on production software dev issues. Had to learn to understand the latter over time.”Related: Vitalik Buterin outlines ‘endgame’ roadmap for ETH 2.0In early December, Buterin shared his vision for a “plausible roadmap” for ETH 2.0, suggesting “a second tier of staking, with low resource requirements” for distributed block validation. Additionally, he proposed the introduction of fraud-proof or ZK-SNARKS that can serve as a cheaper alternative for users to check block validity. According to Buterin:“[With these updates] We get a chain where block production is still centralized, but block validation is trustless and highly decentralized, and specialized anti-censorship magic prevents the block producers from censoring.”

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Crypto regulation is coming, but Bitcoin traders are still buying the dip

Looking at the Bitcoin chart from a weekly or daily perspective presents a bearish outlook and it’s clear that (BTC) price has been consistently making lower lows since hitting an all-time high at $69,000.Bitcoin/USD on FTX. Source: TradingViewCuriously, the Nov. 10 price peak happened right as the United States announced that inflation has hit a 30-year high, but, the mood quickly reversed after fears related to China-based real estate developer Evergrande defaulting on its loans. This appears to have impacted the broader market structure. Traders are still afraid of stablecoin regulation This initial corrective phase was quickly followed by relentless pressure from regulators and policy makers on stablecoin issuers. First came VanEck’s spot Bitcoin ETF rejection by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Nov. 12. The denial was directly related to the view that Tether’s (USDT) stablecoin was not solvent and concerns over Bitcoin’s price manipulation.On Dec. 14, the U.S. Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee held a hearing on stablecoins focused on consumer protection and their risks and on Dec. 17, the U.S. Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) voiced its concern over stablecoin adoption and other digital assets. “The Council recommends that state and federal regulators review available regulations and tools that could be applied to digital assets,” said the report.The worsening mood from investors was reflected in the CME’s Bitcoin futures contracts premium. The metric measures the difference between longer-term futures contracts to the current spot price in regular markets. Whenever this indicator fades or turns negative, this is an alarming red flag. This situation is also known as backwardation and indicates that bearish sentiment is present.Bitcoin CME 2-month forward contract premium versus Coinbase/USD. Source: TradingViewThese fixed-month contracts usually trade at a slight premium, indicating that sellers are requesting more money to withhold settlement for longer. Futures should trade at a 0.5% to 2% annualized premium in healthy markets, a situation known as contango.Notice how the indicator moved below the “neutral” range after Dec. 9 as Bitcoin traded below $49,000. This shows that institutional traders are displaying a lack of confidence, although it is not yet a bearish structure.Top traders are increasing their bullish betsExchange-provided data highlights traders’ long-to-short net positioning. By analyzing every client’s position on the spot, perpetual and futures contracts, one can better understand whether professional traders are leaning bullish or bearish.There are occasional discrepancies in the methodologies between different exchanges, so viewers should monitor changes instead of absolute figures.Exchanges top traders Bitcoin long-to-short ratio. Source: Coinglass.comDespite Bitcoin’s 19% correction since Dec. 3, top traders at Binance, Huobi, and OKEx have increased their leverage longs. To be more precise, Binance was the only exchange facing a modest reduction in the top traders’ long-to-short ratio. The figure moved from 1.09 to 1.03. However, this impact was more than compensated by OKEx traders increasing their bullish bets from 1.51 to 2.91 in two weeks.Related: SEC commissioner Elad Roisman will leave by end of JanuaryThe lack of a premium in CME 2-month future contracts should not be considered a ‘red alert’ because Bitcoin is currently testing the $46,000 resistance, its lowest daily close since Oct. 1. Furthermore, top traders at derivatives exchanges have increased their longs despite the price drop.Regulatory pressure probably won’t lift up in the short term, but at the same time, there’s not much that the U.S. government can do to suppress stablecoin issuance and transactions. These companies can move outside of the U.S. and operate using dollar-denominated bonds and assets instead of cash. For this reason, currently, there is hardly a sense of panic present in the market and from data shows, pro traders are buying the dip.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Avalanche eyes 60% rally as AVAX price breaks out of bull flag

Avalanche (AVAX) strengthened its case for a potential upside run towards $160 in the coming sessions as it broke out of a classic bullish pattern earlier this week.Dubbed “bull flag,” the pattern emerges when the price consolidates lower/sideways between two parallel trendlines (flag) after undergoing a strong upside move (flagpole). Later, in theory, the price breaks out of the channel range to continue the uptrend and tends to rise by as much as the flagpole’s height.AVAX went through a similar price trajectory across the last 30 days, containing a roughly 100% flagpole rally to nearly $150, followed by over a 50% flag correction to $72, and a breakout move above the flag’s upper trendline (around $85) on Dec. 15.AVAX/USD daily price chart featuring Bull Flag pattern. Source: TradingViewAVAX price continued rallying after breaking out of its bull flag range, reaching almost $120 on Friday but eyeing a further leg up towards its bullish continuation target near $160. The level appeared after adding the height of AVAX’s flagpole, which is around $75, to the current breakout point near $85.A week full of bullish AVAX eventsThe recent buying period in the Avalanche market picked momentum also because of a flurry of positive catalysts this week.AVAX jumped nearly 10.50% on Tuesday as Avalanche added the native version of USDC, a dollar-pegged stablecoin issued by Circle, on its blockchain. Additionally, a report penned by Bank of America analysts published on Dec. 10, called Avalanche a viable alternative to the leading smart contract platform Ethereum. That coincided with AVAX gaining another 16%.AVAX/USD daily price chart featuring key events in the week ending Dec. 19. Source: TradingViewOn Thursday, AVAX rallied to its two-week high after BitGo, a crypto custodian with over $64 billion worth of assets under management, announced that it would support the token. Nonetheless, a modest selloff at the local price top pushed AVAX lower. Th recover Friday as Avalanche announced that it has collaborated with web3 accelerator DeFi Alliance to launch a gaming accelerator program.1/ Avalanche is collaborating with @DeFiAlliance to bring its accelerator programs to the Avalanche communityApply by Jan 7 here: https://t.co/6HcJOLxKxABefore you apply, check these reasons why Avalanche should be your preferred platform: pic.twitter.com/GhdHBhQNgb— Avalanche (@avalancheavax) December 17, 2021All the events mentioned above pointed towards the Avalanche ecosystem’s growth. For instance, with USDC, the project promised to provide a viable alternative to Ethereum’s highly expensive Tether (USDT) stablecoin transactions. Moreover, by gaining BitGo as AVAX’s institutional custodian, Avalanche appears to be prepping for catering to accredited investors. Mike Belshe, CEO of BitGo, explained:“Institutional custody is not the same as retail custody, and BitGo wallets and custody were designed from the ground up to meet the needs of institutional investors, and BitGo is the only independent qualified custodian focused on building the right market structure and facilities to enable institutions to enter the digital asset space with confidence.”AVAX price risksOne of the remaining downside risks around AVAX concerns the crypto market performance, on the whole.In detail, AVAC rallied in a week that witnessed the entire cryptocurrency market capitalization lose more than $114 billion, with leading crypto assets Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) plunging over 7% and 5% week-to-date. Concerns over the Federal Reserve’s tapering plans catalyzed the market selloff.Therefore, it appears that traders looked at AVAX as their short-term hedge against the crypto market drop, largely driven by a string of positive news. AVAX/BTC weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewMoreover, the AVAX/BTC pair was up nearly 40% week-to-date at around 0.00245 BTC at the time of writing, with the pair’s relative strength index (RSI) entering overbought territory. That could prompt AVAX to weaken against BTC in the coming sessions.Related: ‘Monster bull move’ means whales could secure the next Bitcoin price surgeA similar outcome may be possible in AVAX/USD’s case as its weekly RSI treads near overbought levels.AVAX/USD weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewHowever, the pair is likely to retain its bullish bias as long as it holds above its 20-week exponential moving average (20-week EMA) as support. As shown in the chart above, the green wave has been capping AVAX’s downside attempts since August 2020.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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Tether lauds Myanmar shadow government for making USDT an official currency

Tether, the issuer of the eponymous stablecoin, has praised the decision of Myanmar’s parallel government, The National Unity Government (NGU), to use USDT as an official currency.Myanmar’s NUG is a shadow government run by the supporters of Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi. As Cointelegraph reported on December 13, NUG announced Tether’s USDT as official currency for local use in an official Facebook post. The finance minister claimed that USDT would offer much needed trade and transaction efficiency.In an official blog post, Tether commended the decision taken by the NUG, a government that is recognized by the European Union and has received commendations from the United States:“The fact that it has chosen to recognize USDT as an official currency is a commendation to the strength of the US dollar and its ability to provide a safe haven to citizens of the world. The significance of this moment goes far beyond the potentials of cryptocurrency to provide financial security but points to long-standing confidence in the US dollar for those who do not have confidence in their own governments or national currencies.”Related: Two firms account for the majority of Tether received: ReportThe NUG’s USDT adoption came as a surprise to many given the controversies surrounding the stablecoin issuer’s reserves. However, from a transaction point of view, USDT is still one of the primary choices on crypto exchanges around the globe.The NUG is currently raising funds to the tune of $1 billion U.S. dollars and the adoption of the USDT comes as a measure against the current military regime. Cryptocurrency use was prohibited by the Myanmar central bank in May last year, and NUG’s adoption of the crypto stablecoin shows how these digital assets are not just reshaping financial markets, but also serving as political tools. 

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Markets rally after FOMC meeting, but Bitcoin bears still have a short-term advantage

Bitcoin’s (BTC) price has been in a down-trend since the $69,000 all-time high on Nov. 10, when the the Labor report showed inflation pushing above 6.2% in the United States. While this news could be beneficial for non-inflationary assets, the VanEck physical Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) denial by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Nov. 12 threw some investors off-guard.Bitcoin/USD price on Coinbase. Source: TradingViewWhile the ETF request denial was generally expected, the reasons given by the regulator may be worrisome for some investors. The U.S. SEC cited the inability to avoid market manipulation on the broader Bitcoin market due to unregulated exchanges and heavy trading volume based on Tether’s (USDT) stablecoin.Analyzing the broader market structure is extremely relevant, especially considering that investors closely monitor meetings held by the U.S. Federal Reserve. Regardless of the magnitude of the upcoming tapering in the Fed’s bond and assets repurchase program, Bitcoin’s movements have been tracking the U.S. Treasury yields over the past 12 months.Bitcoin/USD at FTX (orange, left) vs. U.S. 10-year Treasury Yields (blue, right). Source: TradingViewThis tight correlation shows how decisive the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy has been with riskier assets, including Bitcoin. Moreover, the yield decline over the past three weeks from 1.64 to 1.43 partially explains the weakness seen in the crypto market.Obviously, there are cother factors in play, for example, the market pullback on Nov. 26 was primarily based on concerns over the new COVID-19 variant. Regarding derivatives markets, a Bitcoin price below $48,000 gives bears complete control over Friday’s $755 million BTC options expiry.Bitcoin options aggregate open interest for Dec. 17. Source: Coinglass.comAt first sight, the $470 million call (buy) options overshadow the $285 million put (sell) instruments, but the 1.64 call-to-put ratio is deceptive because the 14% price drop since Nov. 30 will likely wipe out most of the bullish bets.If Bitcoin’s price remains below $49,000 at 8:00 am UTC on Dec. 17, only $28 million worth of those call (buy) options will be available at the expiry. In short, there is no value in the right to buy Bitcoin at $49,000 if it is trading below that price.Bears are comfortable with Bitcoin below $57,000Here are the three most likely scenarios for the $755 million Friday’s options expiry. The imbalance favoring each side represents the theoretical profit. In other words, depending on the expiry price, the quantity of call (buy) and put (sell) contracts becoming active varies:Between $45,000 and $47,000: 110 calls vs. 2,400 puts. The net result is $105 million favoring the put (bear) options.Between $47,000 and $48,000: 280 calls vs. 1,900 puts. The net result is $75 million favoring the put (bear) instruments.Between $48,000 and $50,000: 1,190 calls vs. 1,130 puts. The net result is balanced between call and put options.This crude estimate considers call options being used in bullish bets and put options exclusively in neutral-to-bearish trades. However, this oversimplification disregards more complex investment strategies.For instance, a trader could have sold a put option, effectively gaining a positive exposure to Bitcoin (BTC) above a specific price. But, unfortunately, there’s no easy way to estimate this effect.Bulls need $48,000 or higher to balance the scalesThe only way for bulls to avoid a significant loss in the Dec. 17 expiry is by sustaining Bitcoin’s price above $48,000. However, if the current short-term negative sentiment prevails, bears could easily pressure the price down 4% from the current $48,500 and profit up to $105 million if Bitcoin price stays below $47,000.Currently, options markets data slightly favor the put (sell) options, thus creating opportunities for additional negative pressure.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Data suggests traders view $46,000 as Bitcoin’s final line in the sand

Dec. 13 will likely be remembered as a “bloody Monday” after Bitcoin (BTC) price lost the $47,000 support, and altcoin prices dropped by as much as 25% within a matter of moments. When the move occurred, analysts quickly reasoned that Bitcoin’s 8.5% correction was directly connected to the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting which starts on Dec. 15.Investors are afraid that the Federal Reserve will eventually start tapering, which simply put, is a reduction of the Federal Reserve’s bond repurchasing program. The logic is that a revision of the current monetary policy would negatively impact riskier assets. While there’s no way to ascertain such a hypothesis, Bitcoin had a 67% year-to-date gain until Dec. 12. Therefore, it makes sense for investors to pocket those profits ahead of market uncertainties and this could be connected to the current correction seen in BTC price.Top cryptos weekly performance on Dec. 13. Source: NomicsBitcoin price retraced 8.2% over the past week, but it also outperformed the broader altcoin market. That is in stark contrast to the last 50 days because the leading cryptocurrency’s market share (dominance) dropped from 47.5% to 42%. Investors could have simply fled to Bitcoin due to its relatively smaller risk than altcoins.Tether’s discount bottomed at 4%The OKEx Tether (USDT) premium or discount measures the difference between China-based peer-to-peer (P2P) trades and the official U.S. dollar currency. Figures above 100% indicate an excessive demand for cryptocurrency investing. On the other hand, a 5% discount usually indicates heavy selling activity.OKEx USDT peer-to-peer premium vs. USD. Source: OKExThe Tether indicator bottomed at 96% on Dec. 13, which is slightly bearish but not alarming for a 10% total cryptocurrency market capitalization drop. However, it has been over two months since this metric surpassed 100%, signaling a lack of excitement from China-based traders.To further prove that the Dec. 13 price crash only slightly impacted investor sentiment, the total liquidations over the 24 hours was $400 million.Total derivatives exchange liquidations on Dec. 13. Source: Coinglass.comMore importantly, only $300 million of long leverage contracts were forcefully terminated due to insufficient margin. This figure looks insignificant when compared to the Dec. 3 crash, when $2.1 billion of leveraged buyers had their positions closed.There’s no excessive demand from Bitcoin bears, at the momentTo further prove that the crypto market structure was not strongly affected by the sharp price drop, traders should analyze the perpetual futures. These contracts have an embedded rate and usually charge a fee every eight hours to balance the exchange’s risk. A positive funding rate indicates that longs (buyers) are demanding more leverage. However, the opposite situation occurs when shorts (sellers) require additional leverage, and this causes the funding rate to turn negative.Bitcoin perpetual futures 8-hour funding rate. Source: CoinglassConsidering that most cryptocurrencies suffered considerable losses on Dec. 13, the overall market structure held nicely. Had there been excessive demand for shorts who were betting on a Bitcoin price drop below $46,000, the perpetual futures 8-hour funding would have gone below 0.05%.Tether trading at a 4% discount in the China-based markets, $300 million in long contract liquidations and a neutral funding rate is not a sign of a bear market. Unless these fundamentals change significantly, there is no reason to call for $42,000 or lower Bitcoin prices.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Myanmar shadow government declares stablecoin USDT an official currency

Myanmar’s shadow government, the National Unity Government (NUG), led by the supporters of jailed leader Aung San Suu Kyi, has declared U.S. dollar-based stablecoin Tether (USDT) as an official currency for local use. As per a report published in Bloomberg, the NUG will accept Tether for its ongoing fundraising campaign seeking to topple the current military regime in Myanmar. The shadow government also raised $9.5 million through the sale of “Spring Revolution Special Treasury Bonds” offered to the Myanmar diaspora across the world. The group aims to raise $1 billion through the sale of NUG-issued bonds.The NUG Ministry of Planning, Finance, and Investment posted an announcement regarding the move on Facebook on Dec. 13.Announcement regarding NUG acceptance of Tether. Source: FacebookThe NUG’s decision to make Tether an official currency undermines the crypto ban imposed by the Central Bank of Myanmar in May last year. The incorporation of Tether as an official currency for local use is prompted by privacy concerns and the seizing of funds by the current regime. NUG Finance Minister said the primary reason behind Tether’s incorporation is “domestic use to make it easy and speed up the current trade, services, and payment systems.”NUG was recognized as the official government of Myanmar by the French Senate and the European parliament in October 2021, however, the United States hasn’t made any move in this direction. The NUG’s decision to accept and use Tether stablecoin could become a point of discussion among nations, especially at a time when the U.S. government is looking to impose strict stablecoin issuance policies.

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