Data from CryptoCompare shows that the price of Bitcoin started last week with a sharp move higher, from around $38,500 to $40,500 before plunging. The cryptocurrency attempted to surpass the $40,000 one more time over the week, but ultimately failed and is now changing hands for $39,000.
Ethereum’s Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation, moved in a similar way trying to surpass the $3,000 mark. Just like BTC, ETH failed to go over its resistance and is now trading at $2,850.
Headlines in the cryptocurrency space this week were varied while focusing on growing products and services being offered by traditional finance giants. Goldman Sachs is, for example, exploring non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and their use for the “tokenisation of real assets” as it dives deeper into the cryptocurrency space.
The Wall Street giant also offered its first-ever lending facility backed by Bitcoin this week. The lending facility lent cash collateralized by the cryptocurrency owned by the borrower and is seen as a significant step for a major U.S. bank into the space.
A Goldman Sachs spokesperson said that the loan was interesting for the bank because of its structure and 24-hour risk management. While Goldman Sachs has been diving deeper into the cryptocurrency space BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, launched a blockchain-linked exchange-traded fund.
The ETF, called the iShares Blockchain and Tech ETF, invests in companies involved in the “development, innovation, and utilisation of blockchain and crypto technologies.”
The ETF does not own cryptocurrencies or digital assets directly, and instead tracks several international companies involved in the crypto industry. The ETF is comprised of 41 separate holdings, with U.S.-based crypto exchange Coinbase making up 11.45% of the fund.
Large Bitcoin miners Marathon Digital Holdings and Riot Blockchain also represent 11.19% and 10.41% of the fund, respectively. The fund currently has over 9% of its assets in a U.S. dollar cash position.
To top up the new offering, Fidelity Investments revealed it’s set to allow retirement savers to allocate to the flagship cryptocurrency Bitcoin. The company, which manages over $4 trillion in assets, said it plans to add a BTC account to its 401(k)s as long as employers allow it.
The new functionality could be rolled out as soon as this summer with management fees for the BTC account ranging between 0.75% and 0.9%. The exact fee would depend on the amount invested and the employer.
Despite these new options, data from CryptoCompare’s Digital Asset Management Review shows that digital asset investment products saw negative flows last month.
In total investors moved $79.5 million out of thse products per week, on average. Data shows this is the largest average weekly outflow of the year so far.
Ukraine launches website for NFT donations
Meanwhile, Ukraine’s government has launched a website allowing people to donate NFTs and buy donated pieces, in a bid to raise funds to further support its war efforts. The new site lists several NFT collections.
According to the Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, Mykhailo Fedorov, the funds “will contribute to the Ukrainian victory”. The website also features a number of NFT collections the government supports.
The Ukrainian government launched its own NFT collection at the end of March to raise funds, and recently announced the launch of a second one, planned for May 1.
According to the government’s general crypto donation website, it has received $60 million in cryptoasset donations and used some of those funds to buy supplies for its armed forces, including medicine, packed lunches, and bulletproof vests.
Meanwhile, Finland is set to sell €75 million in seized BTC to support the country defend against Russia’s invasion.
Earlier in the week, Ukraine’s central bank banned citizens from buying cryptoassets using its local hryvnia (UAH) in a bid to prevent “unproductive capital outflows”. Citizens can only buy crypto using foreign currency up to 100,000 UAH, around $3,400 a month.
Last month, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky signed a law legalising cryptoassets in the country as these play a “vital role in Ukraine’s defence process”, according to Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation Alex Bornyakov.
Fort Worth to become first US city to mine Bitcoin
Another notable development this week was Fort Worth, the fifth-largest city in Texas, becoming the first in the United States to mine Bitcoin via a new pilot project approved in a vote made by the city’s council.
Fort Worth has now partnered with the Texas Blockchain Council, a blockchain technology advocate in the state, to mine BTC. The city will maintain three Bitmain S9 miners in a climate-controlled location in the Information Technology Solutions Department Data Center located at Fort Worth City Hall.
On top of that, Brazil’s Senate approved a bill on cryptocurrencies during a plenary session, paving the way for official regulation of the cryptocurrency space in the world’s ninth-largest economy.
The bill still needs to be approved by the Chamber of Deputies and signed off by President Jair Bolsonaro, to become law in the country. The bill was first proposed in 2015, and allows Brazil’s executive branch to create rules on virtual assets.
Francisco Memoria is a content creator at CryptoCompare who’s in love with technology and focuses on helping people see the value digital currencies have. His work has been published in numerous reputable industry publications. Francisco holds various cryptocurrencies.
Featured image via Unsplash.