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Weekly Recap | MicroStrategy, BTC, ETH, stablecoin spotlight

Today’s edition of the weekly recap: MicroStrategy buys 12,000 additional Bitcoin (BTC); the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) closes its probe on Ethereum (ETH); and stablecoins take center stage.

Bitcoin slumps

  • Bitcoin initially dropped below the $66,000 level on June 18 after several days of consolidation. This downward pressure endured as the week progressed, leading to a further collapse below $65,000.
  • CryptoQuant reported that the market turbulence was likely triggered by a confluence of three factors: capitulation by miners, the sustained crypto ETF outflows and reduced issuance of stablecoin tokens.
  • Despite the market downturn, investor profitability remained high with 87% of Bitcoin’s circulating supply in profit.
  • Altcoins such as Pendle (PENDLE) and Toncoin (TON) bucked the overall market trend. Pendle spiked 17% in the week leading to June 22. The asset’s market cap soared to $968 million, looking to touch the $1 billion mark.
  • Meanwhile, MicroStrategy leveraged the downturn to increase its Bitcoin holdings. The firm purchased nearly 12K more BTC on June 20 for $786 million at an average price of $65,883 per BTC.

Zksync launches airdrop

  • Despite controversy and concerns regarding its procedures and Sybil filtering measures, Zksync distributed 3.67 billion tokens. Binance listed the token on June 17.
  • Following the airdrop, more than 41% of the top addresses that received it sold off all their allocations shortly after the distribution event. 

Spot Bitcoin ETFs record outflows

  • Spot Bitcoin ETF products saw sustained outflows last week. These products saw $145.9 million outflows on June 17 and $152.4 million on June 18. Following the negative flows on June 18, cumulative net inflows dropped below $15 billion. 
  • These outflows persisted until the end of last week, resulting in a cumulative negative netflow of over $544 million in the five days leading to June 21.
  • In Australia, asset manager VanEck received the green light from Australia’s securities exchange AXS to launch the first spot Bitcoin ETF in the country.
  • Asset manager 3iQ filed to list the first-ever Solana ETP, dubbed Solana Fund (QSOL), on Canada’s Toronto Stock Exchange. 

Global regulatory developments

  • South Korean media revealed that the country’s authorities are reviewing listings of over 600 assets across multiple exchanges in the wake of a new regulation.
  • Also in South Korea, prosecutors presented fresh evidence supporting their claims that Terra founder Do Kwon used fake transactions to deceive investors. 
  • Fidelity Investments amended its S-1 filings for a spot Ethereum ETF with the SEC, confirming a seed investment of $4.7 million for the upcoming product. 

Binance’s regulatory woes

  • In the U.S., North Dakota rescinded the operational license of crypto exchange Binance following the conviction and sentencing of former CEO Changpeng Zhao.
  • Binance faced another regulatory hurdle in India, with the authorities imposing a $2.2 million fine on the global exchange for violating anti-money laundering provisions.
  • U.S. lawmakers French Hill and Chrissy Houlahan visited Binance employee and U.S. citizen Tigran Gambaryan in a Nigerian prison, where he faces charges of AML violations. The legislators advocated for Gambaryan’s release after the visit.

US SEC closes probe on Ethereum

  • In a win for the Ethereum community, the U.S. SEC revealed that it had closed its investigation on whether certain sales of Ethereum constituted unregistered securities offerings. 
  • However, Consensys confirmed that it continues its battle with the agency on whether user interface offerings for functionalities such as Swapping and Staking on MetaMask constitute securities or not.

Stablecoins take center stage as MiCA looms

  • Stablecoins took the spotlight this week. On June 17, USDT issuer Tether disclosed plans to launch a new asset class backed by Gold.
  • Meanwhile, Uphold discontinued support for USDT alongside other “unauthorized” stablecoins as the market anticipated the implementation of MiCA’s stablecoin regulations by month’s end.
  • Tether also came under fire from a campaign ad in the U.S. which accused the stablecoin issuer of money laundering and corruption. The National Australia Bank, the largest bank in the country, closed its stablecoin project last week.