After a March of bank failures, inflation, and other macroeconomic headwinds, investors turned to bitcoin and other cryptos as safe havens.
BTC rose 21% in March to $28,500. The largest cryptocurrency by market value broke $29,100 Wednesday, its highest level since June 2022. The S&P 500, Nasdaq, and other traditional assets have behind BTC. Tech-focused Nasdaq surged almost 4%.
Greg Magadini, director of derivatives at crypto analytics firm Amberdata, told CoinDesk in an email that BTC and gold, typically safe-haven assets, had seen “explosive upside volatility” in March.
Magadini claimed that BTC’s options market volatility after the collapse of crypto-friendly Silvergate and Silicon Valley banks was less spectacular than last year’s FTX collapse and other crypto disasters. He stated BTC is exploding. “This rush into ‘alternative money’ (BTC and GOLD) reveals some worry regarding merely retaining USD.”
Despite the failure of crypto-friendly institutions Silvergate and Silicon Valley Bank and regulatory action, the crypto industry gained this month. This week, U.S. The Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) sued Binance and its founder Chengpeng Zhao for regulatory infractions. Stablecoins were hit by banking crisis aftershocks earlier in the month, while cryptos were immune.
Before the Binance-CFTC case, IDX Digital Assets’ head investment officer Ben McMillan told CoinDesk that institutional investors’ major concerns have been “the regulatory volatility and the regulatory ambiguity,” not “the market volatility around bitcoin.”
In March, ETH traded for $1,820, up 13%. The second-largest crypto by market value hit $1,861 earlier in the month, its highest level since August 2022.
The CoinDesk Market Index (CMIbest-performing )’s token in March was Mask Network’s MASK token, which rose 68% to $6.30.
CoinDesk Monthly Leaders (CoinDesk Indices). According to Lookonchain, a whale withdrew 3.6 million MASK tokens, worth $14.8 million at the time, from many exchanges through multiple addresses, causing the surge.
According to Lookonchain, “in many circumstances, transfer-in will lead to increased MASK prices, whereas transfer-out will cause a price drop.”
The second-best performer was XRP Ledger’s XRP coin, which rose 41% to 54 cents. Ripple, the XRP issuer, was well-positioned to win a key U.S. case, which contributed to the spike. Securities and Exchange.
Amberdata’s Magadini said, “XRP has been in a legal war for a while, but the fact that we may eventually see a legal conclusion for XRP makes it gain a lot of value.”
Injective Protocol’s INJ token climbed 34% and Stellar’s XLM token 26%.
Sector-wise, the CoinDesk Currency Index gained 21% while the Smart Contract Platform sector gained 9%.
In March, Chain’s XCN token in the CMI’s Currency category fell almost 53%.
Monthly Laggards, CoinDesk Market Index (CoinDesk Indices)
CoinGecko reported that cross-chain bridge technology Stargate Finance’s STG token in the Decentralized Finance (DeFi) sector fell 32% to 71 cents.
The StargateDAO planned to print STG coins by March 15 amid community worries about liquidity and security due to the protocol’s involvement with Alameda Research, the trading arm of beleaguered crypto exchange FTX. The gang abandoned their intentions after FTX liquidators rebuked them.
AMP, a collateralized token designed to speed up crypto network transactions, plummeted 28%, while LCX’s token lost 27%.
Stefan Rust, CEO of data aggregator Truflation and crypto investor, told CoinDesk on Wednesday that traditional finance (TradFi) had hit a tipping point. He remarked, “It seems people are understanding that the banking crisis isn’t truly over.” Rust remarked that the bank collapses had destroyed significant tools for investors and others interested in the digital-asset ecosystem and alluded to mounting regulatory concerns in the U.S. that may be hindering business expansion. He stated, “Many are navigating the on and offramp situation and finding loopholes.”
But he noted that DeFi and TradFi’s current rocky relationship is likely to stabilize. When faith in centralized, controlled institutions has been undermined, he writes, “Over the long run, there will be a complete new on and offramp system connecting DeFi, crypto and the fiat world.” “There is no longer a need to retain all your finances in one bank, one central institution that holds all of your assets in custody, as who knows what will happen with that entity and eventually your savings.”