In highly volatile action this morning, bitcoin (BTC) climbed from $43,500 to above $45,000 in the space of a few minutes but gave back those gains even faster.
- “BTC showed resilience despite the decline in other risky assets and [strength in] the dollar,” said Alex Kuptsikevich, senior financial analyst at FxPro. “World markets were declining following the banking sector, which felt the severity of Russia's partial disconnection from Swift (by 80%).”
- This morning’s run came following President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address last night where he talked tough on Russia, and as Fed Chair Powell sat down for the first of two days of testimony in front of Congress. In his prepared remarks, the Fed chair reiterated his expectation that – despite the uncertainties unleashed by the Ukraine war – the U.S. central bank will hike the Federal Funds rate when it meets later this month.
- In other central bank action today, the Bank of Canada – as expected – lifted its benchmark interest rate for the first time since 2018.
- Trudging about in the $43,500 area at 13:45 UTC, bitcoin quickly jumped to above $45,000 for the first time since February 10, but if you blinked you missed it. Within seconds, the price had fallen back to $44,100. At the time of writing, it’s changing hands at $44,300.
- Checking traditional markets, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq are up by more than 1%. The big action, though, has been in oil, where West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude climbed as high as $112 per barrel earlier this morning but has since retreated to $106.
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