Bitcoin ETFs see high volume, Binance delists Monero, and ARK plans staking Ether: Hodler’s Digest, Feb. 4-10

Top Stories This Week

‘Big volume day’ for BlackRock as Bitcoin ETFs notch $1B volume

Total daily trading volume for spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) topped a billion dollars on Feb. 7, with BlackRock leading the pack. Bloomberg Intelligence analyst James Seyffart described it as a “big volume day” for BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust, which saw a daily trading volume of $341.2 million, eclipsing the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust’s $296.5 million in volume, according to Seyffart. Meanwhile, Fidelity’s FBTC fund came in third with $200 million in volume, and the remaining seven funds had $188 million in daily volume — bringing the total for the day to more than a billion dollars.

Monero hits 5-month low as Binance plans delisting

Binance is delisting Monero (XMR) and other tokens like Aragon, Multichain, and Vai on Feb. 20, 2024. The announcement sent XMR’s value to five-month lows on Feb. 6. The exchange will remove all trading pairs involving Monero, including those trading against Bitcoin, Ether, Tether, and Binance’s native coin, BNB. Withdrawals for XMR tokens will be suspended after May 20, 2024. Binance’s decision is based on factors like contribution to the crypto ecosystem’s health, ethical conduct and responsiveness to due diligence requests, said the exchange.

ARK 21Shares refiles spot Ethereum ETF with cash creates, adds staking

ARK 21Shares has amended its spot Ether exchange-traded fund (ETF) application to adopt a cash-creation model — similar to its approved spot Bitcoin ETF — and has also floated plans to stake a portion of the ETF’s Ether to generate additional income. Under the cash creates model, ARK 21Shares would purchase Ether equivalent to the order amount and deposit it in the trust’s account with the custodian. ARK’s filing also proposes adding a staking element to its spot Ether ETF. According to the filing, the ETF would stake Ether from the trust’s cold vault balance, and staking rewards would be treated as income for the trust. In another headline, the U.S. SEC delayed a decision on whether to approve an Ether ETF proposed by Invesco and Galaxy Digital.

FTX, Alameda transfer $39M to exchanges in 37 days

Crypto wallets linked to the defunct FTX exchange and its sister company, Alameda Research, have sent over $38.8 million in digital assets to numerous crypto exchanges since January 2024, according to data tracked by blockchain analytics firm PeckShield. The fund movements happened amid the fallen exchange’s restructuring efforts and unveiling its plans to fully repay its customers. On Jan. 31, the defunct exchange said in a U.S. court hearing that its restructuring plans would not include a re-launch of the exchange but would be focused on repaying its customers in full. However, FTX attorney Andy Dietderich said that repaying customers was an objective, but not guaranteed.

AI-generated fake IDs claimed to pass crypto exchange KYC are selling for $15

A new service claiming to use artificial intelligence “neural networks” and “generators” to create fake driver licenses and passports has reportedly succeeded in passing Know Your Customer (KYC) checks on multiple crypto exchanges. The fake documents are available for only $15. The site generates realistic fake driver’s licenses and passports from 26 countries, including the United States, Canada, Britain, Australia and multiple European Union countries, and takes payment in multiple cryptocurrencies through Coinbase’s commercial payments service. 404 Media reported on Feb. 5 that it successfully bypassed the KYC verification of crypto exchange OKX using a photo of a British passport the outlet generated with the site, where the ID appeared to be laid on a bedsheet as if a picture of it was taken.

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $47,497, Ether (ETH) at $2,491 and XRP at $0.52. The total market cap is at $1.78 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Dymension (DYM) at 79.19%, Kaspa (KAS) at 31.70% and BitTorrent (New) (BTT) at 29.38%. 

The top three altcoin losers of the week are Monero (XMR) at -27.20%, Jupiter (JUP) at -17.89% and Ronin (RON) at -10.52%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.

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Most Memorable Quotations

“You cannot transform how society moves, manages, tokenizes and stores value if you don’t understand the foundations and history of the problem.”

Monica Long, president of Ripple

“I would like to see a future where we don’t talk about Web2 versus Web3.”

Khori Whittaker, executive director at ENS

“A federal regulator should have the ability to decide if a stablecoin issuer should be barred from issuing such an asset.”

Janet Yellen, United States Treasury secretary

“Investments that self-audit, self-authenticate, prove reserves and are publicly viewable 24 hours a day have never existed until the Bitcoin ETF.”

Darin Feinstein, founder of Core Scientific and Blockcap

“ETFs are eating the world. They ate every other asset class, and they’re having Bitcoin for dessert.”

Fred Krueger, investor and author

“Digital dollars are happening around the world, other governments are regulating dollar digital currencies before the United States. So I think there is a very strong desire to act and assert U.S. leadership.”

Maxine Waters, United States representative

Prediction of the week

Bitcoin shorts should brace to ‘get squeezed’ as BTC price eyes $50K

This week saw Bitcoin’s strongest performance since October, leading to some analysis that Bitcoin shorters would be playing a risky game.

“Strong bounce from the midrange, attacking $48,000 again, as expected,” popular pseudonymous trader Jelle wrote in part of his latest analysis on X (formerly Twitter). “Last hurdle for Bitcoin to overcome, not much standing in the way of new all-time highs once it breaks.”

More sober on the immediate outlook was Keith Alan, CEO and co-founder of trading resource Material Indicators, who observed significant sell-side liquidity immediately below the two-year range highs and $50,000. 

“Something to consider before you FOMO into BTC at this level. There is ~$175M in BTC ask liquidity (aka resistance) stacked between here and $50k, and only ~$50M in bid support down to $43k,” part of Alan’s own X post read.

FUD of the Week

Hut 8 CEO steps down just weeks after short seller accusations

Bitcoin mining firm Hut 8 announced a leadership transition, replacing its CEO weeks after “pump-and-dump” allegations against the company were published by the controversial short-selling firm J Capital Research. On Feb. 7, the mining company published a press release saying that its former CEO, Jaime Leverton, will depart from his position. Asher Genoot, the president and a member of the company’s board of directors, is replacing the former executive. Bill Tai, chairman of the board of Hut 8, said in the announcement that the company is at a “pivotal inflection point,” as they just completed the merger with US Bitcoin Corp (USBTC). The executive added that Genoot will bring a “disciplined, proven approach” to unlock the potential of the merger.

Bakkt, once touted as Bitcoin’s ‘savior,’ is running low on cash

Crypto company Bakkt, backed by the Intercontinental Exchange, has just warned it may not have enough cash to stay in business over the next 12 months. The company filed an amendment to its quarterly report with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission on Feb. 7, warning that it may “not be able to continue as a going concern.” The company was founded in 2018 amid a lot of hype by Intercontinental Exchange, which owns the New York Stock Exchange. Bakkt says it’s now looking to potentially raise additional capital by issuing its registered securities in the public markets to “fund our long-term vision.”

Ransomware returns: Chainalysis flags record $1B payments in 2023

Criminals made off with a record $1 billion in cryptocurrency ransomware payments in 2023 as high-profile institutions and infrastructure were targeted by sophisticated attacks. According to the latest excerpt from Chainalysis’ 2024 “Crypto Crime Report” focusing on ransomware, significant supply chain attacks occurred using ubiquitous file transfer software MOVEit, which affected household names like the BBC and British Airways. A contributing factor to the resurgence of ransomware in 2023 was an escalation in the “frequency, scope, and volume of attacks.” Various actors carried out attacks, from individuals and small criminal groups to large syndicates.

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Top Magazine Pieces of the Week

Real-life Doge at 18: Meme that’s going to the moon

As SpaceX’s Doge-1 space probe prepares to launch to the moon, Magazine looks back on the colorful history of Dogecoin and the life of its namesake, Kabosu.

ChatGPT trigger happy with nukes, SEGA’s 80s AI, TAO up 90%: AI Eye

AI doomsday scenarios, Bittensor surges 90%, SEGA’s 1986 AI, GPT-4 no longer lazy, ChatGPT Apple Vision Pro app, crypto exit strategies, and AIs suck at travel planning.

Wen Notcoin listing? MetalCore beta & more: Web3 Gamer

Notcoin has already exceeded Axie Infinity’s peak user count by 7X, MetalCore CTO advises gamers to approach release dates with skepticism.

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Cointelegraph Magazine writers and reporters contributed to this article.

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Bitcoin is the only decentralized currency, Tether CEO says

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