Cryptocurrencies Resilient Despite Weaker Equity Markets, Increased Regulatory Activity: Citi

Cryptocurrency markets have remained resilient despite stocks' weakness over the past week and increased regulatory activity in the U.S., Citi (C) said in a research report Friday.

“Correlations with equities have continued to decline from last year’s peaks,” analysts led by Alex Saunders wrote. “Volumes remain robust, although on-chain and search activity have not been as durable.”

Stablecoin market caps steadied, having declined following the collapse of FTX, while the percentage of ether (ETH) in smart contracts continues to rise, the report said. A stablecoin is a type of cryptocurrency whose value is pegged to another asset, such as the U.S. dollar or gold.

Following the SEC’s plan to sue Paxos, the issuer of stablecoin Binance USD (BUSD), Citi notes that there have been more than $3.5 billion of BUSD outflows, representing a 23% fall in market capitalization. These flows have generally made their way into rival stablecoin tether (USDT), the bank said.

“Total-value-locked (TVL) activity in ETH terms has not picked up as much as prices,” the note said, and decentralized exchange (DEX) volumes are unchanged this month after a steady decline.

The bank notes that non-fungible-token (NFT) activity has increased in recent weeks, though transactions levels remain far below 2022 averages.

Crypto search interest remains low despite the year-to-date rally in digital assets, the note added.

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