Crypto Roundup: August 23rd, 2021
Bitcoin has once again passed the key milestone of $50K after a week that saw some of the biggest global corporations make moves on the digital asset market.
Retail giant Walmart posted a job for a crypto expert to investigate virtual payment options, Facebook announced that their crypto wallet is approaching its launch date, and Microsoft said it is considering using Ethereum to counter-piracy. Meanwhile, the second-largest U.S. mortgage lender revealed plans to accept cryptoasset payments for home loans.
This headline-grabbing news helped the market shrug off an exchange hack in Japan, and prices moved up across the board. Top-performing assets include Cardano, which rose to an all-time high ahead of the upcoming Alonzo upgrade, and Algorand which added 25% on the launch of a tokenized real estate marketplace.
This Week’s Highlights
- Cardano becomes third-biggest crypto ahead of Alonzo upgrade
- Facebook’s crypto wallet prepares for launch
Cardano becomes third-biggest crypto ahead of Alonzo upgrade
Cardano has risen rapidly through the ranks this past week, toppling Tether and BNB to become the third-largest cryptoasset by market cap.
The Ethereum rival ADA added 40% to reach new all-time highs, making a total increase of over 100% in August so far. This comes ahead of the highly-anticipated Alonzo upgrade, which is expected to deploy long-awaited smart contract functionality to Cardano on September 12th.
According to data from CoinShares, some of Cardano’s price rally could be driven by institutional investors. The cryptoasset management firm’s latest report shows that Cardano has attracted institutional inflows of $39 million, year-to-date.
Facebook’s crypto wallet prepares for launch
Facebook’s Novi wallet, designed for its Blockchain-based stablecoin Diem, is “ready to come to market” according to co-founder David Marcus.
The project, formerly known as Calibra, aims to challenge traditional payment solutions with “an interoperable digital wallet that will enable people, and eventually small businesses, to move money [via the cryptoasset Diem] around domestically and internationally in a quick and affordable way.”
Given Facebook’s dominance in the social media sphere, traders will be watching closely to see whether the project can bring some of Facebook’s enormous global user base into the cryptoasset ecosystem.
The week ahead
Excitement is building after Bitcoin blasted through $50k. Beyond this key psychological threshold, all-time highs at $65k are almost within reach.
In the coming week, however, Fed officials will meet for their annual symposium to discuss potentially tapering the monetary stimulus that is widely thought to have powered stocks to record highs. Any suggestion of changes in policy could catalyze volatility in Bitcoin, which according to research from Santiment has correlated “quite strongly” with the S&P 500 over the last month.