First Mover Americas: GBTC Discount Continues to Narrow; Reddit’s Crypto Tokens Plummet

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for Oct. 18, 2023.

AccessTimeIconOct 18, 2023 at 12:10 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 18, 2023 at 3:38 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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The discount for Grayscale’s Bitcoin Fund (GBTC), the world’s largest bitcoin investment vehicle, narrowed further on Tuesday on optimism a bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) might be on its way in the U.S. The gap between GBTC shares and the trust’s net asset value (NAV) shrank to 12%, the closest they have traded to NAV since December 2021, according to data from TradingView. GBTC has traded at a discount since February 2021 and reached a record low of nearly 50% in December last year during the prolonged crypto winter. The company said on Monday it is “operationally ready” to convert GBTC into an ETF upon the SEC’s approval.

New European Union rules that let tax authorities share data on individuals' crypto holdings were formally adopted by the bloc's finance ministers on Tuesday. The document will now be published in the EU's Official Journal and enter into force 20 days later. The rules were proposed last year in a bid to block assets from being stashed overseas using crypto and had unanimous support from EU member states with discussions mostly taking place behind closed doors. In May, a copy of the draft bill showed the rules extend an existing law to cover a wide range of digital assets, confirmed on Tuesday to include stablecoins, non-fungible tokens and decentralized finance tokens as well as proceeds from crypto staking. The law, known as the Eighth Directive on Administrative Cooperation, forces crypto companies to report information on customers' holdings that will automatically be shared between tax authorities.

Reddit is shuttering its roughly three-year-old blockchain-based Community Points program, reports TechCrunch. "Though we saw some future opportunities for Community Points, the resourcing needed was unfortunately too high to justify," Tim Rathschmidt, Reddit's director of consumer and product communications, told TechCrunch. "The regulatory environment has since added to that effort," he added. Moons (MOON), the native token of Reddit's r/CryptoCurrency community, was lower by 85% on the news on Tuesday, while Bricks (BRICK), distributed as a reward for contributions in the r/Fortnite subreddit, was down 67%. Donut (DONUT) the token that represents the community points of the r/ethtrader subreddit was off 66%.

Chart of The Day

  • The chart shows performance of bitcoin (on the left) and gold since the onset of the Israel-Hamas conflict on Oct. 7.
  • Gold has surged nearly 7.5% since Oct. 7, while bitcoin has continued to trade in familiar price ranges around $28,000.
  • The leading cryptocurrency, widely touted as digital gold, is yet to draw safe haven demand.
  • Source: TradingView

- Omkar Godbole

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Edited by Sheldon Reback.


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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.