31 July 2020
This week in the crypto market has revolved around regulatory developments, the overall market growth with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) developments, and much more.
Let’s take a look at some of the key market-moving news to set the tone for the crypto market growth in the coming months.
Ethereum 2.0 Finalized Testnet Releasing Next Week on August 4
The Ethereum Foundation has accelerated its work for the release of the Ethereum 2.0 Proof-of-Stake (PoS) blockchain network and the finalized testnet for the same would release next week on August 4. The Ethereum Foundation has finally released its staking launchpad Medalla in an announcement last week. This launchpad will allow users to stake their ETH on their latest testnet as well as launch their validator node in preparations for ETH 2.0.
The Ethereum 2.0 platform allows users to stake their ETH and earn interest on their holdings while simultaneously contributing to the network security. But note that the Medalla staking launchpad is a testnet, and so it won’t make use of real-value ETH tokens. Rather, it just simulates a staking environment that is close to reality.
Medalla will provide a sneak-peek into what the actual ETH 2.0 mainnet would look like. Nearly, 16,384 validators are supposed to join the Medalla testnet before its launch next week on August 4. Speaking on the testnet launch, the ETH 2.0 research team said: “After months of hard work from the eth2 research team, along with Consensys and DeepWork Studio, we’re happy to announce the release of the eth2 validator launchpad (testnet version)”.
As we approach the testnet launch, investors have started accumulating Ethereum. Over the last ten days, the ETH price has surged by nearly 50% and reached $340 at the time of writing this article. The excitement is pretty obvious within the Ethereum community, which has long been waiting for the launch of 2.0. The Ethereum 2.0 will massively expand the network capabilities in terms of scalability and performance.
Bitcoin Surges Past $11,000 – Winklevoss Twins Say the Next Bull Run to be Dramatically Different
The world’s largest cryptocurrency by market cap – Bitcoin (BTC) – has finally managed to break through its crucial resistance of $10,500 and hit its new 2020-high of over $11,000 this week.
Over the last ten days, the BTC price jumped more than 20%, and at press time, BTC is trading at $11,139 with a market cap of $205 billion. Many experts from the crypto fraternity think that Bitcoin is all set for the next bull run here onwards.
Founder of Gemini crypto exchange and billionaire investor Cameron Winklevoss said that this Bitcoin bull-run will be very different from the 2017 one. Winklevoss says that the BTC market today has more institutional capital and better infrastructure.
Several data points show a significant jump in the amount of capital that investors are holding today in the crypto market. Bitcoin investment fund Greyscale witnessed a massive institutional money influx in the last quarter. For the last quarter, Greyscale’s assets under management hit an all-time high of $5.1 billion.
The current economic uncertainty worldwide has also caused investors to lean towards Bitcoin and the crypto markets. As the Fed and other central banks pour more liquid cash into the ecosystem, chances of inflation are very high at this stage.
OCC’s Green Signal to National Banks for Offering Crypto Custodial Services Could Be Impactful
Last week, the U.S. Treasury branch of the Office of the Comptroller of Currency (OCC) made a bold decision to allow national banks to offer crypto custodial services to its customers.
This includes services that allow holding cryptocurrencies as well as the unique cryptographic keys associated with it. In the letter, the OCC said that “national banks may provide permissible banking services to any lawful business they choose, including cryptocurrency businesses, so long as they effectively manage the risks and comply with applicable law”.
OCC’s letter can lead a big positive impact on the overall crypto industry and push it towards a remarkable progressive growth. It also highlights the positive synergies developing between the traditional financial market and the crypto market. The pro-crypto stand by the OCC will also encourage other global regulators to think likewise and open new frontiers within their legislations.
It will be important to monitor how the OCC’s decision, coupled with crypto custodial services available from trusted players, welcome in new investors while lowering barriers of entry for institutional players. National banks entering the crypto space could help reduce the probability of frauds, a big issue that the crypto market is currently plagued with. Ultimately, these will lead to great change in the development of the crypto market in the long run.