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This week in Coins: Ethereum and Avalanche Rally, Crypto Winter Still Not Over

This week in coins. Illustration by Mitchell Preffer for Decrypt.

Despite the ongoing cryptocurrency bear market, many top cryptocurrencies posted double-digit percentage gains over the week.

Bitcoin was not so lucky. Bitcoin is up just 5.5% over the past seven days and is currently trading for $24,460, according to CoinMarketCap.

Ethereum rallied much stronger. The #2 cryptocurrency and leading blockchain for high-functioning smart contracts is up 16% over the past week to $1,984 at the time of writing, after peaking at $2,012 late Friday night.

The excitement surrounding ETH is all about the upcoming merger, as Ethereum transitions to a more energy-efficient Proof-of-Stake (PoS) blockchain. Görli, Ethereum’s third and final testnet, was successfully migrated on Wednesday evening.

On Monday, Glassnode data showed that Ethereum derivatives traders “extremely bullish‘ for September, the month of the merger, but will be in decline by October.

In the recent announcement of Coinbase’s corporate results, the company reiterated its emphasis on engagement as part of its pre-merger business model. A recent letter to shareholders states: “Early August We started offering Ethereum staking for institutional customers for the first time. We will be adding more assets for staking in the future for both our retail and institutional clients.”

Bitcoin and Ethereum prices responded positively to this month’s inflation reading from the Consumer Price Index (CPI) on Wednesday. Inflation remains unchanged at 8.5% from last month, a clear sign that the US Federal Reserve historic rate hikes keep prices under control this year.

How Altcoins Have Fared

Several so-called “Ethereum Killer‘, also known as Layer 1 blockchains running highly functional smart contracts, saw major rallies: Avalanche (AVAX) blasted a staggering 55% over the week until it gave up much of its gains on Friday night as ETH surged. Much of the momentum was thanks to that strong growth of NFTs on the blockchain. As of Saturday morning, AVAX was up just 15% over the past 7 days to trade at $29.53.

Other Ethereum rivals up over the seven days: Solana (SOL) is up 14% to $46.32; NEAR Protocol is up 18% to $5.89 and FLOW is up 11% to $2.92.

Additionally, Chainlink (LINK) is up 15.4% to $9.16 and Ethereum Classic (ETC) — which hit a four-month high this week — is up 16% to $44.25.

There were no major losses in the leading coins.

Bear market news

The crypto winter cold showed little sign of abating this week.

Singaporean exchange Hodlnaut joined other lenders on Monday Vault and Celsius and Singaporean exchange Zipmex on the list of crypto companies that suspended customer withdrawals due to “current market conditions.”

Earlier this year, Hodlnaut received general approval (IPA) from Singapore’s Monetary Authority (MAS) “to offer digital payment token (DPT) services as a Major Payment Institution”. The lender has now reportedly informed the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) that it is withdrawing its license application and as a result is no longer offering its token swap facility.

On Tuesday, German crypto bank Nuri filed for bankruptcy, saying the move was “necessary to ensure the safest path forward for all of our customers.” Despite the proceedings, Nuri said customers still have “guaranteed access” to their euro accounts and crypto wallets.

The bank said the measures were based on “significant macroeconomic headwinds‘, notably the pandemic and Russia’s war on Ukraine, as well as ‘various negative developments’ in the industry, ‘including large cryptocurrency sell-offs, the Luna/Terra protocol implosion, the bankruptcy of Celsius and other major crypto funds’.

On Tuesday, Zipmex announced that was the case thaw withdrawals for Bitcoin and Ethereum. Users Can Withdraw Bitcoin Since Friday; Ethereum holders will have to wait until next Tuesday, August 15th.

Finally, at a hearing in Celsius’ chapter 11 bankruptcy case on Friday, lawyers representing a committee of unsecured creditors sought to block attempts by Celsius to sell its mined cryptocurrency. The Lawyers wrote in a court filing that they need more insight into Celsius sales first Bitcoin dismantling is carried out and how the sales proceeds are used.

Celsius Mining is the Bitcoin Mining subsidiary of Celsius Network. On July 14, the day after the parent company filed for bankruptcy, the mining operation also filed for bankruptcy.

Celsius has previously said it will use its mining operations to repay creditors. At the start of bankruptcy proceedings in July, Celsius received approval to spend $5 million to boost its mining operations, a move that drew criticism from the US Department of Justice and now the Creditors’ Committee.

The committee also said it was launching a “full investigation” and expects to invoke the Bankruptcy Rule 2004.

All in all, a good week for crypto, but not so good for a few crypto companies.

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