BullionFX Market Report – July 22, 2023

This week we saw gold maintain ground above its major support area of $1,930, heading towards $1,980. As long as gold can hold ground above $1,930, it remains well positioned to re-test its upper resistance of $2,050 and break towards new highs.

Gold markets have found higher ground despite the US dollar index increasing, suggesting gold is gaining value as opposed to rising in price just because the USD is falling, as we have seen in recent weeks. The Fed Reserve remains cautionary as bond markets suggest it is likely near the end of its interest rate hiking cycle, which should continue to place upward pressure on the price of gold over the coming week.

As we move into next week, we are carefully watching for a clean break of the $2,000 and $2,050 barrier to signal further upside and shall remain cautionary if gold breaks below its $1,930 resistance.

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Bitcoin is currently trading at US$2,9747; the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market cap almost lost 5% of its value this week after posting a 12-month-high of US$31,800 a week before. Institutional interest remains a driving force behind Bitcoin’s stability as large corporations and financial institutions continue to invest in Bitcoin. Speculation that a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund based on spot price could be approved is reaching a fever pitch, with crypto trading firm NYDIG estimating it could unleash $30 Billion in new demand for the token.  

Prices of Ether, the world’s second-biggest cryptocurrency, is trading at US$1,900 and has lost 5% of its value since last week. Lowest level since July 12th, down 2.1% month to date but still up 57% year to date. A recent CryptoVantage survey shows that 46% of investors believe Ether will outdo Bitcoin.  

The remaining top 10 cryptocurrencies market continued to consolidate on Thursday as a quiet day on the news front provided traders with little motivation to trade the market actively. 

The total crypto market capitalization over the past 24 hours rose 0.96% to US$1.21 trillion, while market volume increased 95.85% to US$63.22 billion, according to CoinMarketCap data. 

US SEC to Commence Review of Spot Bitcoin ETF Application

Initial Decision Deadline Set at 45 Days on Tuesday, Bitwise’s Bitcoin ETP Trust’s application made its appearance in the Federal Register, while the following applications will be featured in the compendium on Wednesday.

The SEC had started seeking public consultations on bitcoin ETFs, but the formal review process commences only when filings are published in the register. The initial deadline for the decision is 45 days, but it can be extended up to 240 days. 

SEC’s Strategy for Regulating Crypto Stumbles in Ripple Case 

The Securities and Exchange Commission thought it had a way to regulate crypto—a 77-year-old Supreme Court test that created a catchall definition for obscure securities.  The SEC applied the so-called Howey test to go after crypto startups that issued tokens, exchanges that traded them, and even parties that pool investors’ coins and lend them out. The test became the linchpin of the SEC’s strategy to regulate cryptocurrencies, even though the agency’s laws are decades older than the internet.  

That strategy backfired on the SEC this past week when US District Judge Analisa Torres decided the test doesn’t cover more than $1.4 billion in sales of a token known as XRP. She said whether the tokens are securities depends on how they are sold. 

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler made a pitch for tens of millions of dollars in additional funding for his agency’s multi-billion budget at the US Senate Committee on Appropriations on Wednesday, telling lawmakers the agency must expand to, among other things, protect investors against a crypto industry “rife with noncompliance.” 

Gensler said that the SEC, which has undertaken wide-ranging efforts to crack down on crypto crimes, is seeking an additional $72 million to add dozens of additional full-time staff members to its roster. A bipartisan bill the committee approved last week to bankroll the SEC $2.364 billion for fiscal year 2024 is just enough to “support currently authorized staffing levels given inflation,” the chairman argued. 

Uniswap unveiled a new protocol, “UniswapX”, for trading across automated market makers (AMMs) and other liquidity sources. Features of the new product include “better prices” by aggregating liquidity sources, according to the press release, gas-free swapping, protection against maximal extractable value, or MEV, and no cost for failed transactions. Uniswap is launching UniswapX in “opt-in beta” on the Uniswap Labs interface for the main Ethereum network, with plans to expand to other chains and the Uniswap wallet “in the near future.” 

Gnosis announced the launch of Gnosis Pay, a decentralized payment network, and Gnosis Card, a self-custodial debit card aiming to connect crypto wallets with Visa’s payment system. According to Gnosis, Gnosis Pay is the world’s first decentralized payment network, which enables Web3 developers to integrate various traditional payment methods, including Visa. Gnosis Pay allows users to spend their digital assets directly from crypto wallets wherever Visa is accepted. Gnosis Pay uses a custom Layer2 built on Gnosis Chain to enable more secure and cheaper transactions. Gnosis Card is the first Visa-certified, self-custodial consumer debit card. Built on Gnosis Pay, it directly links to an on-chain wallet instead of a traditional bank account. Gnosis Card will initially be available in the EU, EEA countries and the UK, with plans of expanding into the US, Brazil, Mexico, Singapore, and Hong Kong in Q4. 

Web3 company Cosmic Wire closed a $30 million seed round led by Polygon and Solana Foundation. The funds raised will be used to promote the Cosmic Wire system and help users exert better control over their data and online interactions. Solana Labs also announced the launch of two new products, Solang, a Solidity compiler, and GameShift, a Web3 game development API. 

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