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
‘Bullish rate hike’ — Why crypto spiked in the face of bad news
Despite the U.S. Federal Reserve announcing a 75-basis-point interest rate hike on Wednesday, the crypto markets pumped significantly on the same day with the momentum continuing through the week. Quantum Economics founder and CEO Mati Greenspan jokingly called it a “bullish rate hike” and stated that investors were clearly expecting far worse. Analysts such as Swyftx’s Pav Hundal suggested the recent rally may be due to an easing of inflationary pressures around gas and goods such as corn and wheat.
Ethereum dev confirms Goerli merger date, the final update before the Merge
On Thursday, lead Ethereum developer Tim Beiko revealed that the final Goerli testnet merger ahead of Ethereum’s long-awaited Merge and switch to proof-of-stake will occur between Aug. 6-12. In what has been a long and much-delayed roadmap since late 2020, the Ethereum network is now in the final stages of completing its largest upgrade to date. The official Merge is slated for Sept. 19 but could be subject to further delays if there are issues with the Goerli testnet.
Zuckerberg unfazed about $2.8B metaverse division loss in Q2
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated that he was unfazed by the company copping a $2.8 billion loss on its Metaverse division in Q2. He highlighted that the company’s Metaverse goals will take several years to roll out, but he sees a “massive opportunity” to make hundreds of billions of dollars, or even trillions, over time as the sector matures. “I’m confident that we’re going to be glad that we played an important role in building this,” he said.
Cathie Wood sells Coinbase shares amid insider trading allegations
Cathie Wood’s investment firm Ark Investment Management, which is one of the largest shareholders of Coinbase (COIN), reportedly dumped 1.4 million COIN shares on Tuesday. The shedding was done via three of Ark’s exchange-traded funds (ETF), and the sale was estimated to be worth around $75 million. The firm reportedly held nearly 9 million COIN shares in late June and has continually snapped up the stock since it opened at roughly $350 last April. Since then, the price has tanked heavily to sit just below $63, and Ark probably should have shorted it when Jim Cramer called it “cheap” at $248 last August.
Tesla reports $64M profit from Bitcoin sale
The Elon Musk-led electric vehicle maker Tesla posted a respectable $64 million profit after selling 75% of its BTC holdings in Q2. The gains seem notable considering the company sold during the middle of a bear market; however, what’s more important and exciting is that Musk appears to be finally losing interest in crypto and we won’t need to hear from him anymore. The firm is said to still have 10,800 BTC on its books, which is worth around $255 million at the time of writing.
Winners and Losers
At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $23,559.86, Ether (ETH) at $1,674.34 and XRP at $0.36. The total market cap is at $1.08 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.
Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Optimism (OP) at 75.71%, Ethereum Classic (ETC) at 58.20% and Qtum (QTUM) at 41.89%.
The top three altcoin losers of the week are Huobi Token (HT) at 9.10%, Kusama (KSM) at 8.98% and NEAR Protocol (NEAR) at 7.76%.
For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.
Most Memorable Quotations
“A lot of NFT projects are just speculation with no real tangible spine, no real true story. Having a football club to root for every week? That’s a spine that people attach themselves to.”
Preston Johnson, co-owner of Crawley Town F.C. and co-founder of WAGMI United
“Industry shouldn’t be allowed to write the rules that they want to play by.”
Sherrod Brown, U.S. senator and chair of the Senate Banking Committee
“We think it is more relevant for local projects to benefit the local economy, and not just take products to the United States to benefit traders there, for example.”
Lou Yu, head of KuCoin Labs
“Powell is particularly skilled at delivering bad news. Clearly investors were expecting worse.”
Mati Greenspan, founder and CEO of Quantum Economics
“The Metaverse is a massive opportunity for a number of reasons. I feel even more strongly now that developing these platforms will unlock hundreds of billions of dollars, if not trillions, over time.”
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta
“I worry about things that are not directly related to blockchain and the Metaverse. I worry about climate change and about social fragmentation.”
Neal Stephenson, author of Snow Crash
Prediction of the Week
GameFi industry to see $2.8 billion valuation in six years
Absolute Reports published a GameFi-focused report this week estimating that the play-to-earn NFT gaming industry will be worth $2.8 billion by 2028. For it to reach the target, GameFi would need a compound annual growth rate of 20.4% over six years, given that the sector was estimated to be worth $776.9 million last year. The reasons for this lofty target, however, are locked behind a paywall.
FUD of the Week
Solana-based stablecoin NIRV drops 85% following $3.5M exploit
The algorithmic stablecoin from Solana-based adaptive yield protocol Nirvana Finance, NIRV, de-pegged by 85% this week after the protocol was hacked for $3.49 million worth of USDT. The incident was cited as a flash loan attack which resulted in the funds being siphoned from Nirvana’s treasury. Its native token, ANA, also dropped 85% as a result of the hack.
Phishing risks escalate as Celsius confirms client emails leaked
On Tuesday, beleaguered and bankrupt crypto lending firm Celsius emailed its customers, informing them that a list of their emails had been leaked by an employee of one of its business data management and messaging vendors, Customer.io. The firm has played down the incident, stating that it did not “present any high risks to [its] clients,” adding that they just wanted users to “be aware” — although Celsius also said similar things regarding users’ assets after pausing withdrawals several weeks ago.
TikTok data policy debacle: Is user’s crypto at risk?
Popular social media app TikTok is facing backlash over its far-reaching data collection policies that could extract large amounts of sensitive info from a user’s smartphone or computer. As such, crypto users are now worried about whether TikTok is capable of scraping critical data such as private wallet keys. “TikTok is not just another video app. That’s the sheep’s clothing. It harvests swaths of sensitive data that new reports show are being accessed in Beijing,” claimed U.S. Federal Communications Commissioner Brendan Carr.
Best Cointelegraph Features
The Merge is Ethereum’s chance to take over Bitcoin, researcher says
Ethereum’s imminent transition to a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism will transform its monetary policy, potentially making ETH more scarce than Bitcoin.
Tokenomics not Ponzi-nomics: Influencing behavior, making money
Economics is the study of human behavior involving scarce resources — and the effects those behaviors have on those resources, explains Roderick McKinley.
When worlds collide: Joining Web3 and crypto from Web2
A friend of mine who is a seasoned Web2 tech executive joined a Web3 company in June. A switched-on operator, he asked to speak with all 16 staff before deciding to join the firm.
Cryptocurrency markets experienced a huge surge of activity this week following a hike in US Federal Reserve interest rates, with comments from Tesla founder Elon Musk and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg producing additional bullish sentiment.
On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve announced that it would raise interest rates by 0.25%, marking their highest levels since 2008. Coupled with rising inflation, the announcement triggered a huge pump for cryptocurrency markets, with bitcoin hitting an intraday high of $12,500 – its highest level in two weeks – and other cryptos like Ethereum and Polkadot also receiving a major boost.
The pump was further fueled by remarks made by two of the world’s most influential individuals in technology and business. Firstly, Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk announced that the company had purchased $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin and would begin accepting payments in the cryptocurrency. The company’s balance sheet also revealed a $64 million gain on its bitcoin holdings in the first quarter of 2021.
On the other side of the world, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg appeared to be pinning his hopes on his ambitious project, Metaverse. In an interview with the China Times, Zuckerberg discussed his plans for the project, asserting that it could create “hundreds of billions of dollars” of economic value in the near future.
The announcements from the US Federal Reserve, Tesla and Facebook added more momentum to an already thriving crypto market, with investors eagerly anticipating what’s next for the industry. As the world’s financial systems continue to change and digital assets take center stage, it is becoming increasingly clear that crypto is here to stay.