Market Wrap: Crypto Assets Stabilize as BTC Retakes $20K

Bitcoin traded at $20,900 in the afternoon, while some altcoins surged on positive news and improved sentiment.

AccessTimeIconJun 23, 2022 at 8:27 p.m. UTC
Updated Nov 14, 2022 at 7:53 p.m. UTC

Crypto assets stabilized on Thursday and regained ground after Wednesday’s volatile trading saw bitcoin tumble below $20,000 and altcoins drop.

Bitcoin (BTC) climbed back to $20,900 by Thursday afternoon, recovering from its 24-hour low of $19,764, while ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, was up about 5.5% at above $1,100.

Stocks gained Thursday, with the S&P 500 up 1%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 1.5%, a sign of improved sentiment toward riskier assets.

Some altcoins benefitted from the positive sentiment and surged during the day on positive news.

MATIC, the native token of Ethereum-scaling platform Polygon, jumped 19% in the last 24 hours after Polygon introduced improved privacy for decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) on its network. The Cosmos network’s token, ATOM, gained 12% after decentralized exchange dXdY announced it would build its own blockchain with Cosmos, ditching Ethereum.

Further downside could squeeze exchanges

The $20,000 price point for BTC remains pivotal for the crypto market as analysts debate whether the largest cryptocurrency will see further declines akin to 2013, when BTC fell by 85%, and to 2017, when it plunged 84%. If bitcoin experiences a similar fall this time around, the prices would fall close to $10,000.

Low prices for a sustained period of time might spell trouble for crypto exchanges, crypto data firm Kaiko warned in a research note Thursday.

“As prices remain low, volumes decrease, hedge funds unwind and fees compress, exchanges will be put to the test,” Kaiko analyst Riyad Carey wrote in the note.

“Those that have enough volume and spent responsibly through the bull market will likely be able to weather the storm, while those that played fast and loose with risky staking products and investments may go under if they aren’t acquired or bailed out by FTX or Alameda,” Carey added, referring to two companies led by billionaire entrepreneur Sam Bankman-Fried.

For example, futures crypto exchange CoinFLEX announced that it’s pausing withdrawals because of “extreme market conditions” and uncertainty around a certain counterparty.

Earlier this week, crypto exchange FTX supplied crypto lender BlockFi with $250 million in credit. Last week, Bankman-Fried’s trading outfit Alameda Research bailed out crypto broker Voyager Digital.

Latest prices

Bitcoin (BTC): $20,892 +3.58%

Ether (ETH): $1,124 +4.81%

S&P 500 daily close: 3,795.76 +0.95%

Gold: $1,828 per troy ounce −0.32%

Ten-year Treasury yield daily close: 3.07% −0.088

Bitcoin, ether and gold prices are taken at approximately 4pm New York time. Bitcoin is the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (XBX); Ether is the CoinDesk Ether Price Index (ETX); Gold is the COMEX spot price. Information about CoinDesk Indices can be found at

Fed warms to digital dollar

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that the U.S. central bank plans to recommend to Congress how to advance a potential central bank digital currency (CBDC).

When asked about the Fed’s next steps regarding the rollout of a CBDC, Powell told U.S. lawmakers in a Thursday monetary-policy hearing that “it's something we really need to explore as a country” and that “it should not be a partisan thing.”

“It's a very important potential financial innovation that will affect all Americans,” he said. “Our plan is to work on both the policy side and the technological side in coming years and come to Congress with a recommendation at some point.”

The Fed issued a report on the question of a digital dollar earlier this year, and officials are still combing through the responses from the crypto industry, traditional financial firms and investors. Those answers are likely to inform the Fed's eventual recommendation.

Altcoin roundup

  • Avalanche surges: Smart contracts platform Avalanche added support for bitcoin on its cross-chain bridge, allowing users to transfer bitcoin assets through its newly launched 'Core' wallet. The platform’s token, AVAX, rose 4.3% in the last 24 hours, outperforming bitcoin and ether. Read more here.
  • Voyager cuts daily withdrawal limit: Crypto broker Voyager Digital (VOYG) reduced its daily withdrawal limit to $10,000 from $25,000. The move comes after the firm disclosed its exposure to struggling hedge fund Three Arrows Capital and said it may issue a "notice of default" if the crypto fund fails to make a loan repayment. The broker’s token, VGX, dropped 3.6% in the last 24 hours. Read more here.
  • NHL signs NFT deal: The National Hockey League has signed a multiyear partnership agreement with non-fungible token (NFT) platform Sweet to start a digital collectibles marketplace. The partnership will allow hockey fans to collect and trade NFTs during the league’s 2022-2023 season. Read more here.

Relevant insight

Other markets

Most digital assets in the CoinDesk 20 ended the day higher.

Asset Ticker Returns DACS Sector
Polygon MATIC +17.8% Smart Contract Platform
Cosmos ATOM +10.8% Smart Contract Platform
Avalanche AVAX +9.2% Smart Contract Platform

Biggest Losers

There are no losers in CoinDesk 20 today.

Sector classifications are provided via the Digital Asset Classification Standard (DACS), developed by CoinDesk Indices to provide a reliable, comprehensive and standardized classification system for digital assets. The CoinDesk 20 is a ranking of the largest digital assets by volume on trusted exchanges.


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Krisztian  Sandor

Krisztian Sandor is a reporter on the U.S. markets team focusing on stablecoins and institutional investment. He holds BTC and ETH.

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Jimmy is a CoinDesk markets reporter.

Helene Braun

Helene is a New York-based reporter covering Wall Street, the rise of the spot bitcoin ETFs and crypto exchanges. She is also the co-host of CoinDesk's Markets Daily show. Helene is a graduate of New York University's business and economic reporting program and has appeared on CBS News, YahooFinance and Nasdaq TradeTalks. She holds BTC and ETH.