In brief

  • US markets rallied over news America is mulling a fresh round of aid to help in the fight against COVID-19.
  • Bitcoin went more than 60 days above $10k.
  • Eth2 testnet reached 2 million ETH milestone.

US futures markets went on a rally late yesterday as the government unveiled a new tranche of aid to tackle COVID-19. 

The S&P 500 saw its biggest one day gain in two weeks thanks in part to a $2.2 trillion promise from House Democrats to help protect jobs and businesses. 

The proposal is less than the proposed $3.4 trillion plan that was greenlit in May, but it’s substantially more than the Republicans own proposal, which limits the bailout to between $650 billion to $1 trillion. 

While the deal hasn’t been approved by both sides, markets are optimistic. For hedge funds, however, it’s a different story. 

Dozens of funds had been betting against the dollar–at levels not seen in more than three years. Speculators reckoned America’s poor handling of COVID-19 on top of what is expected to be a contentious election year would see the dollar’s domination of global currency markets decline.  

But the dollar has remained strong, meaning speculators are due a winter of pain as the greenback continues to defy expectations. 

Boring Bitcoin

The same can be said of Bitcoin, as it sets a new record for staying above $10k for 63 days straight. The currency’s volatility has hovered around just 2% in the last 60 days, according to the Bitcoin volatility index

For comparison, Bitcoin’s performance over the summer puts it within touching distance of gold. The safe-haven typically averages 1.2%, while major currencies like the US dollar sit in the 0.5%-1.0% range. 

But just in case you were worried crypto was about to become boring, overnight hackers drained $15 million from Yearn Finance by targeting a vulnerability in one of its smart contracts.

The news sent Eth’s price tumbling from $365 to lows of $351 within a few hours. At the time of writing, prices have recovered to $355. 

Elsewhere in the Ethereum ecosystem, testnet validators working on the long-awaited Ethereum 2.0 have been busy putting the next iteration of the blockchain through its paces. 

More than 60,000 validator nodes have been activated during testing, staking some 2 million test ETH, affectionately known as Görli ETH. And there’s a lot at stake (pardon the pun). Ethereum 2.0 promises to fix what is becoming an increasingly congested blockchain, as the DeFi craze clogged up Ethereum, pushing transaction fees as high as $14. 

All being well, Ethereum 2.0 Phase 0 will launch in November, with a staged rollout taking as long as two years to complete. 

Slow and steady it seems, is crypto’s new mantra. 

Sponsored post by AAX

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