First Mover Americas: Crypto Remains Resilient as Japan, UK Slip Into Recession

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for Feb. 15, 2024.

AccessTimeIconFeb 15, 2024 at 2:39 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 9, 2024 at 5:52 a.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 (BTC) rose 1.5% on Thursday as two of the world's largest economies said they slipped into recession at the end of last year. Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market value, added a similar amount. Impressive inflows into spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are persuading analysts to anticipate a bull cycle in the next 1-2 years. Cryptocurrencies tend to remain resilient even as global economies struggle. The U.K.'s Office for National Statistics said gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 0.3 percent in the last three months of 2023. Japan lost its spot as the world’s third-largest economy to Germany after the nation unexpectedly slipped into a recession.

The ether price rose through $2,700 for the first time since May 2022 as traders bet on the possibility of a spot ETH exchange-traded fund approval in the U.S., a move that could boost its institutional appeal. As of Thursday, Franklin Templeton, BlackRock, Fidelity, Ark and 21Shares, Grayscale, VanEck, Invesco and Galaxy, and Hashdex, had all submitted applications for an ether ETF. The firms already offer spot bitcoin ETFs, which were introduced mid-January. Since then, the funds have accumulated $11 billion worth of BTC and helped propel the price of the largest cryptocurrency through $52,000.

One of the world's largest telecommunication services providers, Telefónica (TEF), is partnering with decentralized oracle network Chainlink (LINK) to ensure security against Web3-related hacks and exploits , including "SIM Swap" attacks. The partnership will provide security for smart contracts that will connect with other Application Programmable Interfaces (APIs) on the "GSMA Open Gateway," according to a statement published on Thursday. GSMA – an organization that consists of over 1,000 mobile operators and businesses – started the GSMA Open Gateway, which introduced APIs to help bring telecom technologies onto the Web3 ecosystem, the statement said.

Chart of the Day

  • The chart shows the probability of a global economic recession based on key indicators like consumption, employment, manufacturing, finance and raw materials.
  • The recession probability has dropped to 22%, the lowest since December 2021.
  • Dwindling recession fears support risk-taking across all corners of the financial markets, including cryptocurrencies.
  • Source: MacroMicro

- 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.