First Mover Americas: Hong Kong Spot Bitcoin ETF Applicants Claim Approval

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for April 15, 2024.

AccessTimeIconApr 15, 2024 at 12:01 p.m. UTC
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This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk’s daily newsletter, putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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Multiple Hong Kong bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) applicants, including China Asset Management, Bosera Capital and others, posted to social-media platform WeChat (Weixin) that they had been approved to list spot bitcoin and ether ETFs. However, these announcements seem to have front-run an official statement from the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), which has not posted a list of approved issuers. Some of the posts have since been deleted. Singapore-based analytics company 10x Research said in a note there is a 100% probability that Hong Kong will not be the last jurisdiction to approve bitcoin ETFs, and more will likely follow. “This will be an additional demand driver for Bitcoin from various countries that could approve Spot ETFs, namely Australia, Japan, Korea, and the UK,” said the firm.

Bitcoin gained on Monday, adding 3% after dropping to as low as $61,300 over the weekend. The weekend’s drop was due to geopolitical tensions, according to some analysts. Matteo Greco, a research analyst at Fineqia, said: “The weekend's price drop was attributed to geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, with market sentiment improving after an announcement regarding a temporary halt in hostilities among the involved nations.” He also noted that the upcoming bitcoin halving, could trigger a short-term “sell the news” reaction before and after the event. An array of altcoins also gained on Monday, with Render (RNDR), a GPU marketplace that lets users contribute computational power to 3D rendering projects and earn tokens in return, jumping 19%. Ondo Finance’s ONDO also gained, climbing 18% over the past 24 hours.

Germany’s largest state-backed lender, Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW), is set to offer crypto custody services through a partnership with Austrian exchange platform Bitpanda. The two firms have entered into a strategic partnership, which would see LBBW provided with “Investment-as-a-Service” infrastructure to “store and procure cryptocurrencies,” including bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH). "By offering crypto-asset custody, we are positioning ourselves with a clear added value for our corporate clients – while ensuring the highest security standards," Stefanie Münz, member of the LBBW board of directors responsible for finance, strategy and operations, said in a press statement. "Bitpanda provides the necessary technical and regulatory infrastructure to offer our customers innovative and, above all, secure solutions in the area of digital assets."

Chart of the Day

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  • The chart shows bitcoin's 2% aggregated market depth, or combined value of buy and sell orders within a 2% price range of the market price, in BTC terms.
  • The market depth has dropped to 6.76K BTC, the lowest in at least a year.
  • Weak depth means the market may not absorb large buy/sell orders at stable prices.
  • Source: Kaiko

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CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by Block.one; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Lyllah Ledesma

Lyllah Ledesma is a CoinDesk Markets reporter currently based in Europe. She holds bitcoin, ether and small amounts of other crypto assets.

Omkar Godbole

Omkar Godbole is a Co-Managing Editor on CoinDesk's Markets team.


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