Top crypto assets endure a tough week as DeFi blooms
Square made the headlines this week after splashing funds in another Bitcoin purchase as most crypto coins sunk
Ethereum (ETH) falls off a weekend peak above $2,000
Ethereum bulls failed to sustain the upward momentum for the token, which ended up struggling after coming off last week with a record high of $2,036. The token stepped into the weekend with its price soaring but gave up most of the gains before Tuesday.
ETH hovered around $1.9 k for the better part of the two-day break before seeing a steep descent. The token’s price fell heavily, bottoming out below $1,400 by midweek. Ethereum however, recovered slightly climbing above $1,600 yesterday, as bull struggled to take back control.
MoneyGram calls of partnership with Ripple
Dallas-based money transfer service MoneyGram suspended its collaboration with Fintech firm Ripple on Tuesday. The global money transfer provider cited the uncertainty around Ripple’s ongoing case with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as the reason for the decision. The company confirmed that it wouldn’t be leveraging XRP to process international settlements until the litigation matter was cleared.
MoneyGram also revealed, through its quarterly outlook report, that it wasn’t expecting to benefit from the blockchain firm in this quarter. Based on the figures detailed in the report, MoneyGram is set to suffer some financial consequences in this first quarter as a result of the suspension.
The two firms forged their relationship three years ago when MoneyGram adopted XRP into its payment system. Two years later, the firms entered into a partnership with the main objective of working on cross-border payments using digital assets. The blockchain firm injected a $50 million investment into the collaboration at the end of 2019 and received a 10% stake in MoneyGram. However, Ripple sold $15 million of its stocks in MoneyGram at the end of last year.
SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce advocates DeFi regulation
Elsewhere, the SEC Commissioner (Hester Peirce) called for the regulations of the DeFi space. Speaking at the George Washington University Law School on Monday, Peirce explained that overseeing the sector will make it compete fairly against centralised finance.
She acknowledged that DeFi had the edge in different aspects including speed of transactions, democracy, and technological resilience. She asked the DeFi sector to be open to the regulation. The commissioner also touched on the issue of increasing DeFi scams. Peirce asserted that such incidents would be curbed by enforcing proper regulation in the sector.
Although she noted the several challenges in the path of regulating the sector, Pierce said the commission was prepared to rise to the occasion. According to her, the DeFi space would be the classic test of the commission’s ability to regulate the financial landscape. She added that the tech advancements in the space would be key in dealing with the regulatory challenges.
Square makes a $170 million BTC purchase
Square announced on Tuesday that it had completed another purchase of the leading crypto — this time worth $170 million. The merchant service company led by Jack Dorsey loaded up 3,318 coins of the crypto asset that has recently been labelled the digital gold.
The company was among the early entrants in the corporate Bitcoin world and has remained active inspiring others like Tesla to follow suit. Back in October 2020, the mobile payment giant acquired a stash of 4,709 bitcoins at an aggregate price of $50 million.
The recent purchase came on the back of crypto media outlet Coindesk reporting that the initial stash had increased in value fivefold to around $253 million. At the time of the first purchase, Bitcoin was exchanging hands at $13,000. The crypto asset has since seen a lot of price action including a brilliant run to $20k and another record-breaking surge to $58k.
According to the earnings report filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the company realised a Bitcoin revenue totalling up to $4.57 billion last year. The larger portion of this revenue came in the last quarter of the year where Square earned $1.76 billion. The gross profit realised in this quarter was $41 million, which totals to $97 million for the whole year.
ChainLink (LINK) and Stellar (XLM) struggle to stay afloat
ChainLink (LINK) came off the weekend trading at $33 but plunged to about $29 by the end of the day. A slight recovery on Tuesday helped LINK climb back to $31 before hitting a week low of $23. The token attempted a successful bounce back in the range $28. LINK price remained at this range until today when it dropped to around $25. The token is currently changing hands at $25.21.
Stellar (XLM) followed a similar path starting the week off at a price figure of $0.497. Monday’s gains pushed XLM price to a week high of $0.516 on coinmarketcap. This was followed by a sharp decline to $0.39 and a subsequent recovery to $0.467 by the end of Monday. The token gradually dipped on Tuesday bottoming out at a low of $0.34. XLM price remained stable at around $0.4 on Wednesday and Thursday. Stellar is, as of writing, trading at $0.3806.
DEX trading volumes set to surpass January’s high
February’s DEX volume figures today surpassed the record high set last month. DeFi analysts had predicted the same to happen early this week as the DEX trading volume figures for this month looked convincing to eclipse January’s. Uniswap represents the lion’s share of this month’s trading volume, having also dominated last month’s volume.
But that’s not the only milestone the DeFi space has seen this week. The total trading volume recorded by decentralised exchange so far this year is more than that combined volume from the last two years.