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Crypto News Today: Sam Bankman-Fried and BTC-Spot ETFs Grab the Headlines

By:
Bob Mason
Published: Dec 31, 2023, 07:23 GMT+00:00

It was a vocal crypto community on Saturday, with JPMorgan Chase, BTC-spot ETFs, and the DoJ dropping the second trial against SBF talking points.

Crypto News Today

In this article:

Key Insights:

  • BTC bucked the broader market trend on Saturday, gaining 0.26%.
  • Bets on the SEC approving a first batch of BTC-spot ETF applications drove buyer demand.
  • BTC-spot ETF-related chatter and SEC activity will remain focal points.

Bitcoin Avoids a Saturday Loss on BTC-Spot ETF Approval Bets

Bitcoin (BTC) gained 0.26% on Saturday. Partially reversing a 1.08% loss from Friday, BTC ended the day at $42,307. Significantly, BTC dropped below the $42,000 handle before recovering.

Anticipation of the SEC approving the first batch of BTC-spot ETFs drove the buyer demand for BTC.

Bloomberg Intelligence ETF Analyst James Seyffart shared his views about the approval of BTC-spot ETFs, saying,

“Def expecting it by Jan 10. Still thinking official date is more likely January 8th – 10th though. (Absent Warren convincing Biden to do something drastic *knock on wood*).”

Seyffart also responded to a post from Nate Geraci, saying,

“Couple weeks ago I probably would have said that this seems a tad early. But after yesterday it’s looking like we’re in the home stretch.”

Co-founder of the ETF Institute Nate Geraci said the SEC could notify issuers on Tuesday or Wednesday that they can launch BTC-spot ETFs in the following week.

There was a flurry of activity on Friday, with issuers filing amended S-1s. As per SEC requirements, issuers removed references to In-kind creations and included Authorized Participants (AP).

However, the crypto community reacted to JPMorgan (JPM) as an AP. Blackrock (BLK) and Invesco/Galaxy named JPM as APs.

Amicus Curiae John E. Deaton shared several posts regarding JPM as an AP. The posts reflected the Bank’s change in stance regarding cryptos.

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon recently attended a Banking Committee hearing on Capitol Hill. The JPM CEO delivered an anti-crypto tirade, famously saying,

“If I was government, I would close it down.”

However, JPMorgan’s inclusion as an AP was not the only bone of contention.

Sam Bankman-Fried Will Not Stand a Second Trial

The US Department of Justice dropped the second trial against Sam Bankman-Fried. Bankman-Fried had faced charges relating to campaign finance and China bribes.

Amicus Curiae attorney John E. Deaton reacted to the news, saying,

“Ask yourself why is this case being dropped in an election year? During the fraud trial Caroline Ellison testified that SBF gave the Biden Administration $10 Million and the reason he told her was to “buy access.”

Deaton went on to say,

“He got two personal meeting with Gary Gensler, and several others with SEC staff. He got to speak to CFTC Chair Behnam, Republican Maxine Waters, and others on the FSC. Who did he get to meet on the Senate Banking Committee? Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Sherrod Brown, did you also have meetings?”

Deaton was not alone in condemning the decision. Coinbase (COIN) Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewal also shared his thoughts. While considering possible reasons for dropping the case, Grewal said,

“I think this is a miscarriage of justice. The public interest in a public airing of charges almost always matters. Campaign finance charges are at the very top of this list. What politicians and others knew what and when are critical questions that deserve answers.”

Technical Analysis

Bitcoin Analysis

BTC remained above the 50-day and 200-day EMAs, affirming bullish price signals.

A BTC move through the $42,968 resistance level would bring the $44,690 resistance level and the December high of $44,747 into play.

On Sunday, BTC-spot ETF-related updates remain the focal points.

However, a drop below the $41,500 handle would give the bears a run at the 50-day EMA and $39,861 support level.

The 14-Daily RSI reading, 51.18, indicates a BTC move to the $44,690 resistance level before entering overbought territory.

BTC Daily Chart sends bullish price signals.
BTCUSD 311223 Daily Chart

Ethereum Analysis

ETH sat above the 50-day and 200-day EMAs, sending bullish price signals.

An ETH break above the $2,300 resistance level would give the bulls a run at the $2,457 resistance level.

However, a drop below the $2,250 handle would support a fall through the 50-day EMA and $2,143 support level.

The 14-period Daily RSI at 53.39 suggests an ETH move to the $2,457 resistance level before entering overbought territory.

ETH Daily Chart sends bullish price signals.
ETHUSD 311223 Daily Chart

About the Author

Bob Masonauthor

With over 20 years of experience in the finance industry, Bob has been managing regional teams across Europe and Asia and focusing on analytics across both corporate and financial institutions. Currently he is covering developments relating to the financial markets, including currencies, commodities, alternative asset classes, and global equities.

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