This Week in Crypto: Bearish Momentum Ebbs

Bitcoin’s Roller Coaster Ride Continues

Following a brief pump past the $31,500 resistance mark, the value of bitcoin (BTC) tumbled back yet again, consolidating below $30,500. Over the past seven sessions, BTC has remained flat, but 24-hour trading volume has dipped sharply, tumbling by nearly 40%.

A recent report from Arcane Research highlights that the crypto market, especially bitcoin, is currently going through its longest stretch of “extreme fear” since the COVID-19 crash that transpired back in 2020.

BTC has experienced multiple sell-offs since December 2021, primarily because of the global economy’s increasing macroeconomic headwinds. The decline over the last two months has been steep, keeping BTC’s year-to-date returns negative.

Meanwhile, institutional investors are making the most out of the bear market, scooping up as much BTC as possible. BTC investment products registered a cumulative inflow of $126 million from two Saturdays ago to last Saturday. At the same time, year-to-date data shows that bitcoin investment funds have added around $506 million in net inflows.

Prominent Altcoins Face New Dilemma

Delivering much-needed relief for investors, the altcoin market is bouncing back as altcoins trim their previous losses. Over the past seven sessions, almost every altcoin in the top-10 list has recovered significantly. However, there have been some outliers and underperformers during the period.

BNB (Binance Coin) found itself under pressure following a recent exposé by Reuters that claims Binance has laundered around $2.35 billion in illicit funds. The value of BNB dropped by nearly 7.3% on June 7, 2022 – touching its lowest level in three weeks. Based on the ongoing allegations of breaking “securities rules” and laundering billions in illicit funds for criminals, experts forecast another 25% to 40% dip in BNB over the coming weeks.

This week’s biggest loser is Waves (WAVES). In the week prior, the value of WAVES jumped 93%, primarily driven by the Waves ecosystem’s Neutrino Protocol Stablecoin (USDN) revival plan. However, WAVES is down over 13% in the last seven sessions.

Elrond (EGLD), too, has fallen around 19% this week. This comes at the heels of a major exploit that wrecked the Elrond-native Majar DEX, which saw the looter steal approximately $113 million worth of Elrond eGold (EGLD) tokens.

Altcoin Breakout Materializes amid Market Tumult

This week, several altcoins formerly stuck at tight ranges successfully broke out from their horizontal trends. Among the top-performing altcoins of the week are Cardano (ADA), Chainlink (LINK), Tezos (XTZ), and Helium (HNT).

Cardano (ADA), the fifth-largest altcoin by market capitalization, gained over 10% this week, driven mainly by the surging number of active Cardano-based projects. According to a recent tweet by Input Output HK, there are currently 1,003 projects building solutions atop Cardano, underlining that Cardano is gradually positioning itself as a promising alternative to Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, and other networks.

Another driver of ADA’s upward momentum was the official announcement by Input-Output Global (IOG) – one of the largest cable providers in the U.S. – confirming that it will soon launch a decentralized identification and loyalty program on the Cardano chain.

Chainlink (LINK) is up nearly 33% this week, following the release of the long-term roadmap for its staking program. The Chainlink team posted a blog explaining its long-term ambitions related to the introduction of “Chainlink Economics 2.0” which will create sustainable rewards, empower node operators, and increase the network’s security. Another underperforming token, Tezos (XTZ), has bounced back from its lows, climbing 14.5% over the past seven sessions. 

That said, one of this week’s biggest gainers was Helium (HNT). The 42nd-ranked token rallied around 40% this week. The Helium ecosystem supports a range of IoT devices and is powered by a global system of low-power nodes, making it a potentially enticing investment. As a result, the value of HNT is on the rise despite the ongoing bear market.

U.S. Senators Introduce Crypto Bill as LTC Faces Tough Times

U.S. Senators Cynthia Lummis and Kirsten Gillibrand introduced a bipartisan crypto bill earlier this week, seeking to implement a comprehensive set of regulations and guidelines across all digital assets in the U.S. The bill is designed to facilitate new federal laws for stablecoins, taxes on small-scale payments, and the judicial reach (power) of regulators – all of which will provide some concrete answers to the hurdles that are holding back the crypto market from maturing.

In the meantime, Litecoin, following its privacy-focused MimbleWimble (MWEB) upgrade, has landed in a difficult spot. Five major South Korean exchanges, namely Upbit, Korbit, Bithumb, Gopax, and Coinone, have delisted Litecoin (LTC) because the latest upgrade doesn’t meet South Korea’s Specific Financial Information Act guideline.

Finally, PayPal (PYPL) has finally rolled out a new feature, empowering users to natively transfer digital assets between PayPal and other wallets and exchanges. While this feature is initially available for select U.S. users only, PayPal has confirmed that it will eventually open this feature for all U.S. users.