🌳U.S. Consumer Confidence Grows Amid Economic Challenges; Changpeng Zhao Steps Down from Binance.US Board

29 Nov 2023, Wednesday

2:48 AM

🌳U.S. Consumer Confidence Grows Amid Economic Challenges; Changpeng Zhao Steps Down from Binance.US Board

BTC

ETH

S&P Futures 500

$37,968.00

$2,052.50

$4,567.50

(+1.91%)

 (+0.99%)

(+0.14%)

Note: All percentages shown above are referenced to the previous business work day's 09:00 (GMT+8)


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What We Are Covering Today

  • U.S. consumer confidence rises; Tesla's Cybertruck faces significant production challenges (More in Macro & TradFi)
  • Changpeng “CZ” Zhao steps down from Binance.US board; SEC seeks public input on Franklin Templeton, Hashdex Bitcoin ETFs (More in DeFi & CeFi)
  • FTX transferred 1,500 ETH to Wintermute Trading; ETH holder deposited 5,010 ETH to Binance, retaining 35,000 ETH in holdings (More in On-Chain)
  • Bitcoin volatility surges in short term; Term structure suggests stable long-term outlook (More in Crypto Derivatives)
  • BTC approaches key resistance; ETH consolidates within horizontal channel pattern (More in Crypto Technical Analysis)

Macro & TradFi

U.S. consumer confidence experienced its first increase in four months, as indicated by the Conference Board’s index rising to 102 from 99.1 in October, surpassing the Bloomberg economists' median estimate of 101. This uptick is attributed to a more positive outlook on the labor market, with consumers showing improved expectations for short-term income and employment prospects. Despite a minor decline in current conditions, the reduced pace of inflation has provided some relief, contributing to rising real wages and sustained consumer spending. Notably, the perceived risk of a recession has decreased to its lowest in 2023, though a majority still anticipate one. This data presents a cautiously optimistic scenario, suggesting resilience in the labor market and consumer sector, despite ongoing economic challenges.

Elsewhere, Elon Musk's Cybertruck, poised for release, presents significant production challenges for Tesla Inc., echoing the complexities once faced with the Model X. Despite its innovative features like a stainless steel body and high-voltage capability for faster charging, the Cybertruck confronts difficulties in manufacturing, particularly with its unique stainless steel panels and reliance on in-house battery cells, which are behind schedule. Musk's acknowledgment of these challenges recalls his previous experience with the Model X, which he admitted was overambitious in its technology integration. Tesla's strategy of simplicity and manufacturability, which drove the success of the Model 3 and Model Y, seems at odds with the Cybertruck's design, posing potential risks to its production efficiency and volume. This situation raises concerns about Tesla's ability to maintain its momentum in vehicle innovation and market leadership, especially given Musk's own projection of significant efforts and time required to ramp up Cybertruck production.

Yesterday, US stock markets witnessed modest gains, with the Nasdaq climbing 0.30%, and the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average increasing by 0.10% and 0.24%, respectively. This uptick in the markets occurred amidst varied statements from Federal Reserve officials. Retail giants like Walmart and Foot Locker saw significant advances, rising by 1.24% and 3.16%, buoyed by record-breaking Cyber Monday sales. Concurrently, the US dollar experienced a 0.5% decline against a basket of six major currencies, reaching its lowest point since mid-August. Market focus is now turning towards the upcoming US Personal Consumption Expenditure data, set to be released this Thursday, 30 November, at 21:30 Singapore Time, which could provide critical insights into consumer spending and inflation trends.

DeFi & CeFi

  • Changpeng “CZ” Zhao steps down from Binance.US board
  • SEC seeks public input on Franklin Templeton, Hashdex Bitcoin ETFs
  • ARK Invest sells $5.26M worth of Coinbase shares as price hits 19-month high
  • Coinbase CEO says Binance settlement will turn the page on crypto’s bad actors
  • Hong Kong chief says regulators may get powers to crack down on unlicensed crypto exchanges
  • Crypto trading firm Kronos Research offers 10% bounty to hacker
  • Chainlink upgrades staking mechanism with 45M LINK pool
  • Animoca Brands becomes TON blockchain’s largest validator

Binance's founder, Changpeng Zhao, is stepping down as chairman of Binance.US’s affiliate board. Although this was not part of the recent settlement, Zhao is relinquishing his voting rights through a proxy arrangement. As per a tweet from Binance.US, his interest in the company is henceforth economic with no involvement in governance. The settlement itself, amounting to $4.3B, includes Binance's withdrawal from the U.S. and Zhao's resignation as CEO. Despite Binance.US's exclusion from this agreement, it is still contending with an ongoing U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement action regarding the alleged offering of unregistered securities to U.S. investors. The tweet emphasized that Binance.US remains under the leadership of Norman Reed and the existing management team, assuring continuity in operations and a commitment to customer-centric services.

In other news, the SEC has called for written comments on the proposed Franklin Templeton and Hashdex spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) applications’ Forms 19b-4. These serve as public disclosures approved by the SEC Trading and Markets Division and have a 35-day open period from publication in the Federal Register for comments and responses. Commenters on Franklin Templeton’s ETF should evaluate potential BTC market manipulation, the firm’s surveillance sharing agreement with Coinbase, and the correlation between BTC spot and futures prices. Meanwhile, Hashdex's more complex ETF structure involves holding spot BTC via a futures ETF, acquiring BTC from exchanges like CME and relying on CME pricing without a Coinbase agreement. The SEC seeks input on CME's significance in this structure, liquidity availability, and the sponsor's calculations determining BTC price relationships between CME and unregulated exchanges.

On-Chain

The recent transactions involving FTX, Wintermute Trading, and Celsius Network, as reported by @spotonchain, have significant implications for the cryptocurrency market. FTX's transfer of 1,500 ETH and 7.64 million MATIC, likely to soon be traded on exchanges, could increase market liquidity and potentially impact the prices of these tokens. Meanwhile, Celsius Network's relocation of 5,000 ETH to a new address, following its earlier movement of 10,167 ETH to FalconX, suggests active portfolio management, possibly in response to recent price fluctuations. These activities indicate a strategic reshuffling of assets by major players in response to market conditions.

In other news, the actions of a whale address 0x011, as highlighted by @spotonchain, suggest a strategic portfolio rebalancing. By depositing 5,010 ETH to Binance after a year of dormancy, the whale appears to be adjusting their investment position, possibly in response to market dynamics or personal investment goals. This move, particularly against the backdrop of their historical accumulation of ETH at lower prices, indicates a shift from accumulation to diversification or profit-taking. Despite this transaction, the whale's retention of a substantial 35,000 ETH suggests continued confidence in Ethereum, albeit with a more balanced approach.

Crypto Derivatives

  • Funding rates remained positive for BTC and ETH.
  • Deribit Implied Volatility Index (DVOL) for BTC and ETH fell to 50.58% and 48.99%, respectively.
  • The 30-day 25-delta skew (C-P) for BTC and ETH rose to 5.76% and 2.97% respectively.
  • The futures market witnessed $68.5M liquidations, with shorts representing 63.65%.

Top 3 USDT Perpetual Funding Rate Arbitrage Opportunities

Net Annualized APR

Perp (USDT pair)

Long on

Short On

14.85%

ETH

Bybit

dYdX

13.01%

SOL

OKX

dYdX

11.35%

XRP

OKX

Binance

Source: @CexyArbBot Telegram Bot

Notes:

1) Pairs observed include BTC, ETH, SOL, BNB, XRP, LTC, and DOGE vs. USDT perps. 

2) CEXs observed include Binance, Bybit, OKX & dYdX.

3) Lookback period is 24 hours.


The rise in Bitcoin's 7-day and 30-day implied volatilities to 44.43% and 47.45% respectively indicates an expectation of more pronounced price fluctuations. This shift in market sentiment suggests traders focus more on short-term price movements in the Bitcoin market.

The BTC term structure is exhibiting a forward curve indicative of contango. Today's short-term volatility experienced an initial spike compared to yesterday, but it has since stabilized, especially as we cross the 121-day expiry mark. Beyond this point, the implied volatilities show a flat trend, implying a market agreement on lower medium to long-term volatility. This behavior signals a calm and stable outlook for the BTC market extending into the future.

Over the past 24 hours, there has been a discernible shift in the market's perception of risk, as reflected by the 25-delta call-put skew. The 7-day skew has risen from 4.60% to 5.71%, indicating an increased concern for short-term upside risk among traders. Similarly, the 30-day skew has also escalated from 3.67% to 5.65%, pointing to heightened volatility expectations over the coming month. This concurrent rise in both the short-term and medium-term skews reflects a market adjustment to a more volatile outlook for the near future.

During @Paradigm Americas Session Hours on 28-Nov-23, the cryptocurrency options market exhibited significant activity. In BTC options, a nuanced strategy was observed with the purchase of a call calendar spread involving 250 contracts for the 1-Dec-23 and 8-Dec-23 40000 strikes, while 125 contracts of the 8-Dec-23 40000 call were sold, suggesting a complex approach to the near-term volatility expectations. For ETH, the optimism was pronounced with the purchase of 3897 contracts in the 26-Jan-24 2400/3000 call spread, indicating a bullish forecast, while the sale of 2000 contracts of the 29-Dec-23 2200 call pointed to either a conservative stance towards year-end prices or a premium collection strategy.

Crypto Technical Analysis

On the 4-hour chart for BTC, an ascending triangle pattern is manifesting, indicative of a consolidation phase where buyers are progressively setting higher lows, showcasing increasing demand. Currently, the price of BTC is challenging the upper boundary of this pattern, situated approximately at $38K. The repeated tests of this resistance level suggest a persistent buying interest. Conversely, if the upward momentum wanes and the resistance holds, we might see a retracement towards the triangle's ascending trendline at approximately $37K, which could act as support. The RSI hovers around 59.11, hinting at a strong bullish momentum without venturing into the overbought territory. This could provide room for upward movement before the market is considered overextended. However, traders should remain vigilant as the RSI trend and the reaction to the resistance level will be critical in determining Bitcoin's short-term price direction within this pattern.

Moving on to ETH, ETH exhibits a clear horizontal channel pattern, which suggests a period of consolidation as the price oscillates between parallel support and resistance levels. Currently, Ethereum is trading around $2.05K, which is situated near the midpoint of the channel. The upper resistance boundary of the channel is near the $2.1K mark. Conversely, a reversal from the current price could see Ethereum retest the support at around the $1.95K region. The RSI is at 52.59, which points to a neutral market sentiment without any immediate indication of overbought or oversold conditions. This neutrality in the RSI provides no clear directional bias, implying that the price could continue to trade within the bounds of the channel until a significant volume-led breakout or breakdown occurs. Investors and traders would benefit from closely monitoring the price action at these key levels for signs of a breakout in either direction.

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