Bitcoin surged Friday morning in Asia trading above the US$26,000 resistance level, sparking a rally into the top 10 unstable cryptocurrencies. The exceptions were Cardano and Toncoin, both of which posted small losses. Ether posted modest gains, but remained below $1,650. The American financial services company JPMorgan Chase & Co. is reportedly exploring a blockchain-based payment and settlement system, boosting optimism for more institutional adoption of blockchain. US stock futures were mixed trading after the S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed lower on Thursday. Better-than-expected employment data has added to concerns about a rate hike in the US.
Bitcoin spearheads crypto winners
Bitcoin rose 1.62% over the past 24 hours to $16,179.43 as of 7:30 a.m. in Hong Kong, turning a weekly loss into a 0.75% gain, according to data from CoinMarketCap. The world’s leading cryptocurrency was trading between $25,500 and $26,000 since Saturday. It hit an eight-day high of $26,409.30 early Friday morning.
JPMorgan, the largest bank in the US by asset size, is “in the early stages” of developing a blockchain-based digital deposit token for cross-border payments and settlements. The bank has already built most of the underlying infrastructure, but will await approval from U.S. regulators before creating the token itself, Bloomberg reported Friday.
Deposit tokens are transferable digital assets that represent deposit claims on a commercial bank. Token transactions take place on blockchains, making deposits faster and cheaper than traditional methods.
“It is another sign that major companies continue to build their blockchain capabilities during this bear market,” said Markus Thielen, head of research & strategy at digital asset service platform Matrixport, in an emailed comment.
The market is currently awaiting a decision from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on another US financial giant: BlackRock. On June 15, the top asset manager in the world applied for approval to establish a Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund (ETF).
“While most expect the SEC Blackrock decision to hit the market in October, news of a potential ETF approval could also come any time,” Thielen said.
“Once Bitcoin regains some momentum, the rally could have legs and take prices back above $30,000,” he added.
Elsewhere, Martin Gruenberg, chairman of the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), said on Thursday that despite the apparent good health of the US economy, the country’s banking sector “continues to face significant downside risks from the impact of inflation , rising market conditions and interest rates and geopolitical uncertainty.”
Bitcoin prices have historically benefited from uncertainties in the banking system, such as the crisis at Zurich-based lender Credit Suisse in March. The sudden collapse of the bank caused the price of the token to fall from less than $27,000 to more than $28,000 on March 19.
Ethereum was up 0.77% in the past 24 hours to USD 1,644.68 and has fallen 0.07% over the past seven days.
Most of the other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies made small gains. Cardano’s ADA and Toncoin from the TON network were the only tokens to post losses, dropping 0.14% and 0.70% respectively. But both coins posted weekly gains of 1.07% for ADA and 3.68% for Toncoin.
Total crypto market capitalization rose 1.37% to $1.05 trillion. Trading volume fell 11.95% to $23.81 billion.