First Mover Americas: Bitcoin Jumps to $26.5K as Trading Volume Increases

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for August 24, 2023.

AccessTimeIconAug 24, 2023 at 12:30 p.m. UTC

This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk’s daily newsletter putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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Bitcoin posted a sizable advance on Wednesday, rising nearly 5% at one point to just shy of $26,800 alongside a rally in traditional markets as interest rates retreated. Institutional cryptocurrency exchange LMAX Digital noted that trading volume has been trending up over the week but saw a significant increase on Wednesday. “Bitcoin volumes printed $173 million, 59% above 30-day average volume and ether volumes printed $92 million, 70% above 30-day average volume,” the exchange said in a morning note. The uptick for bitcoin’s price and trading volumes stems from traditional markets, said LMAX, “with stocks rallying and the U.S. dollar selling off, cryptocurrencies were able to benefit.”

Bankrupt crypto exchange FTX wants to start selling, staking and hedging its sizable crypto holdings, and is seeking to hire Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital as an advisor, according to court filings made late Wednesday evening. FTX, which collapsed in November 2022, wants to return funds to creditors in fiat currency rather than bitcoin or ether and hopes careful trading can avoid denting the value of its more than $3 billion in crypto holdings. “Hedging bitcoin and ether will allow the Debtors [FTX] to limit potential downside risk prior to the sale of such bitcoin or ether,” the filing by the FTX lawyers said. “Staking certain digital assets… will inure to the benefit of the estates — and, ultimately, creditors — by generating low risk returns on their otherwise idle digital assets."

Binance is discontinuing its crypto-backed debit card in Latin America and the Middle East, according to a post on X (formerly Twitter) by its customer support team on Thursday. No reason was provided for the decision, though the cryptocurrency exchange went on to say that less than 1% of its users in the regions would be affected. The card has been in use in Latin America for one year, having been rolled out in Argentina last August and in Brazil in January. The debit card allows customers to use their crypto assets to make transactions in shops or online as they would with a debit card issued by their bank. Discontinuation of the Binance Card in Latin America and the Middle East will take effect on Sept. 21, according to the post.

Chart of the day

  • The chart shows growth in the total value locked in the decentralized finance protocols that involve real world assets (RWA).
  • The TVL has surged to $1.2 billion from $100 million at the start of the year, according to data tracked by Matrixport.
  • "Smart traders increasingly use those RWA as the equivalent of safe-haven assets as holders collect the yield while waiting for the crypto downside volatility to subside," Matrixport said in a market note on Thursday.
  • Source: Matrixport

- Omkar Godbole

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Edited by Stephen Alpher.


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Lyllah Ledesma

Lyllah Ledesma is a CoinDesk Markets reporter currently based in Europe. She holds bitcoin, ether and small amounts of other crypto assets.

Omkar Godbole

Omkar Godbole is a Co-Managing Editor on CoinDesk's Markets team.

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