The largest crypto by market capitalization had spiked over $20,000 in morning trading.

Good morning. Here’s what’s happening:

Prices: Bitcoin started promisingly before sinking along with other cryptos in a topsy turvy day.

Insights: Chinese universities continue to teach blockchain technology, but employers, teachers and students are also looking outside educational institutions to further their interests. 

Prices

  • Bitcoin (BTC): $19,103 −1.3%
  • Ether (ETH): $1,334 −0.6%
  • CoinDesk Market Index (CMI): $953 −0.8%
  • S&P 500 daily close: 3,647.29 −0.2%
  • Gold: $1,634 per troy ounce +0.6%
  • Ten-year Treasury yield daily close: 3.96% +0.09

Bitcoin, ether and gold prices are taken at approximately 4pm New York time. Bitcoin is the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (XBX); Ether is the CoinDesk Ether Price Index (ETX); Gold is the COMEX spot price. Information about CoinDesk Indices can be found at coindesk.com/indices.

Bitcoin and Other Cryptos Rise and Fall

By James Rubin

In topsy turvy Tuesday trading, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies rose early before crumbling.

The largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization was recently trading just over $19,100, down about a percentage point for the previous 24 hours. BTC had surged above the psychologically important $20,000 threshold during morning hours (UTC) for the first time in nine days before clattering downward to more lately familiar levels.

Bitcoin's rise and fall came as investors initially may have tried to anticipate cryptos' historically bullish October by adding to their holdings. And two unexpectedly strong economic indicators may have also buoyed their spirits before. But investors later recoiled over inflation and recession fears that have plagued asset markets of all stripes for months.

Ether was recently changing hands at approximately $1,330, also flat from the previous day and its highest perch in more than a week. Most other major cryptos spent the day in red territory with UST recently off about 7% and XRP down more than 5%. Celsius’ native token CEL spiked late Tuesday after reports that FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried could bid on the bankrupt crypto bank’s assets. The token had nosedived earlier Tuesday after the surprise departure of Celsius CEO Alex Mashinsky.

The CoinDesk Market Index (CDI), an index measuring cryptos' performance, was recently down slightly and about where it has stood for much of the past week. The Fear & Greed index, a measure of market sentiment about crypto, remains in extreme fear territory.

Stocks

Crypto price patterns dovetailed with equity markets that jumped earlier in the day before tumbling. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), which entered bear market territory a day earlier, meaning it fell at least 20% from its previous high, closed a few fractions of a percentage point lower. The S&P 500, also dropped slightly, although the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 0.2%.

Investors remain worried about inflation and continued central bank hawkishness that seems increasingly likely to throw the global economy into recession. Unexpectedly strong reports on durable goods orders, which sank less than projected, and housing starts, are likely to embolden the Federal Reserve to continue its recent policy of aggressive interest rate increases.

Fed Comments

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Neel Kashkari, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, reiterated the bank's commitment to restore "price stability."

Earlier in the day, at an event hosted by the French central bank Tuesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said that regulation of decentralized finance (DeFi) needs to be done “carefully and thoughtfully,” given its limited impact on the real economy. “The DeFi winter … didn’t have significant effects on the banking system and broader financial stability” due to the lack of links between them, Powell told a panel.

As bitcoin climbed above $20,000 on Tuesday, Oanda Senior Market Analyst Edward Moya called its resiliency "impressive." But Moya was less than sanguine about any significant prices increases in the near future. "Bitcoin doesn't have a catalyst to extend much higher, but a stabilization is a welcome sign for long-term bulls. ​

Biggest Gainers

Asset Ticker Returns DACS Sector
Chainlink LINK +3.6% Computing

Biggest Losers

Asset Ticker Returns DACS Sector
Terra LUNA −7.2% Smart Contract Platform
XRP XRP −5.6% Currency
Cosmos ATOM −4.3% Smart Contract Platform

Insights

How Chinese Universities Teach Blockchain

By Xinyi Luo

Oct. 24, 2019, marked the beginning of a tectonic change for blockchain education in China.

Speaking before the politburo of the Communist Party of China in Beijing on that day, President Xi Jinping said the country needs to "seize the opportunity" afforded by blockchain technology. These words would set forth China’s ambitious agenda to take a leading role in the global development of this emerging technology.

The universities of China received the message loud and clear. In 2020, 14 Chinese colleges established blockchain technology undergraduate degree programs, following Chengdu University of Information Technology, which had established the country’s first College of Blockchain Technology months before Xi’s speech.

But Xi’s ambition had and continues to have an inherent contradiction. While blockchain technology is admired by the Chinese, its most popular application, cryptocurrencies, is now illegal. In the past decade, China has banned crypto transactions (2013), initial coin offerings (2017), crypto mining (incrementally from 2019-2021) and – the final blow – cryptocurrency trading, in 2021. As a result, the very idea of blockchain is different in China than anywhere else in the world.

"When discussing blockchain, we cannot see it from a cryptocurrency perspective," said Jianhai Chen, associate professor in the ​​College of Computer Science at Zhejiang University. It is ranked 24th in CoinDesk’s 2022 Best Universities for Blockchain. Instead, he threads a needle to teach blockchain for legally approved uses only. “What we want to do is to use blockchain technology to empower industries and solve existing problems,” Chen said.

Important events

Circle Converge22 (San Francisco)

Token2049 (Singapore)

All writers’ opinions are their own and do not constitute financial advice in any way whatsoever. Nothing published by CoinDesk constitutes an investment recommendation, nor should any data or Content published by CoinDesk be relied upon for any investment activities. CoinDesk strongly recommends that you perform your own independent research and/or speak with a qualified investment professional before making any financial decisions.

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