Bitcoin rallies and AWS expands blockchain presence

Bitcoin’s winning streak, Amazon Web Services expands its presence in the blockchain world, and El Salvador to issue Bitcoin bonds. Let’s look at how this week wrapped up for crypto.

Bitcoin’s longest winning streak since 2020

For the first time since the pandemic, Bitcoin has completed a 10-day winning streak, breaking through the $19,000 mark for the first time since November 10, 2022. And with the positive US consumer price index data that came out yesterday, showing a slowdown of inflation, Bitcoin continued its rally along with the stock markets, going as high as $19,102, before retracing below the $19K mark.

This week is heading to be one of the best Bitcoin saw since the start of the bear market in early 2022, with weekly gains of over 12% and a settled position above the $18,500 level. At the same time, the overall crypto market cap is coming closer to breaking through the $1 trillion mark for the first time since November, as it stands now at around 942.6 billion, as per CoinGecko’s numbers.

Staked Ethereum coins top 16 million ETH

Four months after its successful shift to proof-of-stake, more than 16 million ETH have been deposited to Ethereum’s staking smart contract. These coins represent more than 13% of Ethereum’s circulating supply, which is worth more than $22 billion. Staked ETH cannot be withdrawn before the next Ethereum upgrade, known as the Shanghai Upgrade, which is not expected to happen anytime before next March. This new milestone comes as Ethereum was among the biggest winners of the last 10 days’ bullish run in crypto, making more than 12.7% in profits in the last 7 days, and breaking through the $1,400 mark for the first time in 9 weeks. 

AWS to scale blockchain solutions

Amazon Web Services (AWS), the world’s largest cloud services provider, has revealed a new partnership with Ava Labs, the company behind the Avalanche blockchain, aiming to expand its blockchain offerings. The new partnership will make it easier for individuals to launch and manage nodes on Avalanche, as AWS will support Avalanche’s infrastructure and decentralized application (dApp) ecosystem, alongside node deployments, through its marketplace. Google Cloud had previously taken a similar approach last October, providing node-hosting services for Web3 development, with support for the Ethereum blockchain.

El Salvador paves the way for Bitcoin-backed bonds

El Salvador’s congress has passed new legislation that provides a framework for creating Bitcoin-backed bonds, under the name “Volcano Bonds”, to pay down the country’s sovereign debt and fund the construction of its famous Bitcoin City project. The new bonds aim to raise $1 billion, with half of it going into building the special economic zone of Bitcoin City. The Volcano Bonds will have a ten-year maturity date and carry an annual interest rate of 6.5%.

Hong Kong to limit trading to highly liquid assets

Hong Kong is getting ready to apply new investor protection measures to the crypto industry, with a new law that would allow the trading of highly liquid crypto assets only. The new licensing law was revealed by The Securities and Futures Commission CEO during her appearance at the Asia Financial Forum on Wednesday and said the new law, which will come into effect starting next June, “will set the criteria that would allow retail investors to trade in major virtual assets” only. Hong Kong is following suit with other countries like Australia that have been considering a similar regulation to protect retail traders from fraud and high-risk assets.

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