Blockchain and Cryptocurrency News Roundup

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  • May 17, 2021
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17 May 2021.

Here’s a short summary of some of the biggest headlines in Crypto. Bitcoin drops after Musk suggests Tesla may sell holdings, Coinbase looks to list Dogecoin in 2 months, Bitcoin market dominance falls to three-year low of 40% and Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin burns $6.74B in Shiba Inu.

Bitcoin drops after Musk suggests Tesla may sell holdings, says it hasn’t yet

Bitcoin took an 3.7% drop to near $45,100 Sunday afternoon EST after Tesla CEO Elon Musk did not outright deny that his electric-car company has sold or could soon sell all of its more than $1 billion holdings of bitcoin because of the criticism he’s received after suspending the world’s largest cryptocurrency as a form of payment.

Bitcoin’s price dropped immediately after the tweet, to near $45,100 and eventually sank to as low as $44,459.02 before recovering.

In recent trading, bitcoin had bounced back a bit to $45,627.90, down 4.98% in the past 24 hours, according to CoinDesk 20.

Earlier the day, Musk also tweeted at Peter McCormack, who posted a Twitter thread about Musk’s criticism of bitcoin and support for dogecoin, saying that “obnoxious threads like this make me want to go all in on Doge.”

Musk on May 12 announced that Tesla is discontinuing bitcoin payments due to concerns around its environmental impact, which sent bitcoin down by $2,000.


Coinbase looks to list Dogecoin in 2 months

Coinbase Global Inc. shared its earnings for the first quarter of 2021 that ended in March. The company’s earnings results were mostly consistent with investor expectations and corresponded with the firm’s preliminary report that was released ahead of its April 14 listing on Nasdaq public stock market. However, the results were just below analyst expectations.

Investors were expecting the publicly traded company to report earnings per share (EPS) of about $3.07, totalling a revenue of $1.814 billion, according to a consensus of analysts’ estimates surveyed by FactSet on May 12.

Coinbase reported $1.8 billion in revenue, which figures slightly below the $1.8-plus billion expected by analysts for the first quarter of 2021. While the net income line increased from $32 million to $177 million, the earnings came in at $3.05 per share, which missed analyst expectations by four pennies.

Based on the earning call, Coinbase stated that it will look to list new assets, including Dogecoin, a meme stock with a meteoric increase in value this year, which has been added by a number of crypto exchanges in recent weeks. 

“Despite our strong Q1 results, the rapid expansion of the crypto economy also creates challenges for Coinbase. Competition is increasing as new market entrants join the crypto economy every month. Our competitors are supporting certain crypto assets that are experiencing large trading volume and growth in market capitalization that we do not currently support, as well as offering new products and services that we do not offer,” Coinbase said in its earnings report.

In terms of strategy, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong stated during the call that the company may in some cases wait for digital coins to reach some level of scale and acceptance before offering trading but the firm is looking to be the first exchange for other listings. The Coinbase boss revealed that the exchange plans to list Dogecoin within the next six to eight weeks.

The earnings report indicated that Coinbase had more than 53 million verified users at the end of the quarter, with more than 8,000 institutions, compared to 34 million users witnessed in the same period last quarter. Monthly transacting users came in at 6.1 million, more than double the figures witnessed at the end of the fourth quarter of 2020.

Bitcoin market dominance falls to three-year low of 40%

Altcoins have risen to a three-year dominance high after tagging a record combined capitalization of nearly $1.5 trillion last week.

While Bitcoin tumbles in response to Elon Musk’s Twitter account yet again, altcoin dominance has surged to its highest level in roughly three years.

As of this writing, Bitcoin represents 40.3% of the combined crypto asset capitalization — the lowest it has been since June 2018, according to CoinMarketCap.

Bitcoin hit a market dominance low of 33% in January 2018 when it was cooling from its previous peak while the altcoins were just hitting theirs. It is currently not far off its second lowest level of 36%, three years ago in May 2018.

The combined capitalization of altcoins is currently sitting at $1.25 trillion after establishing all-time highs of almost $1.5 trillion last week.

Ethereum has recently seen its dominance surge, with Ether’s capitalization creeping up to roughly half of Bitcoin’s to represent a crypto market dominance over 19%. Ether also represents 32% of the combined altcoin market cap.

Binance Coin ranks third, representing 4% of total crypto capitalization, followed by Cardano with 3.3%, and Dogecoin with 3%. By contrast, Binance Coin exerts a 6.7% dominance over the altcoins markets, with Cardano’s dominance coming in at 5.5%, and Dogecoin representing 5%.

Elon Musk may have deepened Bitcoin’s loss of dominance by hinting that Tesla may be offloading its BTC holdings in a May 17 tweet, triggering a 15% crash over 18 hours.

While Bitcoin is now down 35% from its April 14 all-time high, several altcoins have seen weaker pullbacks, with Ethereum currently down 24% from its May 12 peak of $4,350 on May 12.

Some markets are rallying in spite of the bearish meta-trend, with Cardano rallying to tag all-time highs of $2.45 on May 16.


Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin burns $6.74B in Shiba Inu

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has burned 410.24 trillion Shiba Inu (SHIB) tokens he was gifted by the token’s creators, arguing that if he did anything else with the $6.7 billion haul, it could cause unnecessary speculation.

“I’ve decided to burn 90% of the remaining shiba tokens in my wallet. The remaining 10% will be sent to a (not yet decided) charity with similar values to cryptorelief (preventing large-scale loss of life) but with a more long-term orientation,” wrote Buterin in the transaction hash.

Burning is the act of transferring tokens to an unusable account, thus removing them from circulation, decreasing supply, and increasing scarcity. 

Buterin burnt 410.24 trillion in Shiba Inu (SHIB) coins on Sunday, worth as much as $6.74 billion at the time of the transaction. The amount burnt also represents more than 40% of all SHIB in circulation. 

According to the 27-year-old creator of Ethereum, while COVID-19 is still a big problem, “it’s important to think about the longer-term future too!”

Buterin argued that simply holding the coins was not an option anyway—firstly, for security reasons, and secondly, because any transaction associated with him would result in unnecessary speculation, something he’d prefer to avoid.

SHIB token jumps on burn news

Buterin came into the possession of 505 trillion SHIB, a Dogecoin-inspired ERC-20 token running on the Ethereum blockchain, after the project’s anonymous creators gifted the Ethereum co-founder with 50% of its total supply earlier this month. 

However, it took Buterin just a couple of days to donate 50 trillion Shiba Inu tokens, worth around $1.2 billion, to the India Covid Relief Fund. He also donated generous amounts in other canine-inspired meme coins, such as Dogelon and Akita, to other fundraisers.

Though generous, the event provoked ire from many SHIB holders. The price of the token plummeted shortly after the massive donation, tumbling nearly 50%. 

But unlike the donation, the latest burning has acted as a somewhat bullish catalyst for the SHIB token. The price of SHIB jumped 2% on the news. The token is currently trading hands at $0.00001651 at press time, according to CoinGecko. 

While Buterin said he was impressed by the way the communities have treated his donations, he urged the creators of coins not to send him any tokens without his prior consent.

“I don’t want to be a locus of power of that kind,” he concluded. “Better to just print the coins into the hands of a worthy charity directly (though do talk to them first).”


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