After June gave Bitcoin (BTC) a boost with BlackRock’s application for spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), July sent its price into a summer slump. Only some altcoins managed to perform well in response to Ripple Labs’ partial victory against the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. XRP (XRP), the most obvious beneficiary, posted a monthly close of +49%.
The overall response of markets to the result of the lawsuit was much more muted than many anticipated, as a ruling on XRP’s sales does not easily generalize to other coins and tokens. The SEC is now firmly expected to appeal, and market activity has been generally waning over the summer months.
Exploring how the various sectors of the digital asset space have performed in this environment, Cointelegraph Research’s “Investor Insights Report” offers a concise monthly round-up of everything going on in crypto. It dives into venture capital, derivatives, decentralized finance (DeFi), regulation, mining and much more.
NFTs and DeFi take a hit
Nonfungible tokens (NFTs) have suffered throughout the bear market. However, in July, interest in NFTs waned so much that even classic collections fell to price levels as low as before the craze of 2021. The floor price of Bored Ape Yacht Club fell below 30 Ether (ETH), and the top five NFT collections in terms of lifetime earnings collected only $800,000 in monthly royalties.
The weak numbers were accompanied by negative news surrounding Azuki, a well-known blue-chip NFT project. The AzukiDAO filed a proposal to sue Azuki’s founder and win back 20,000 ETH lost to alleged rug pulls.
The DeFi sector has been plagued by similar woes, with an unprecedented security vulnerability discovered and exploited. Vulnerabilities in DeFi typically stem from poorly implemented smart contracts, but this time, the Vyper programming language — an alternative to Solidity — was subject to a vulnerability that resulted in Curve Finance being exploited for over $61 million in a reentrancy hack.
With the Curve liquidity pools compromised, the price of CRV crashed. The exploited funds were returned several days later, with the hacker accepting a 10% bounty. These and other developments, such as recent news surrounding ZK-rollups, can be found in the DeFi section of Cointelegraph Research’s monthly trends report.
Crypto stocks retain strength
Crypto stocks have shown unusual strength in recent months, most notably the top mining stocks, which have consistently outperformed BTC. The Cointelegraph Research Investor Insights Report has been tracking the performance of these stocks since their rally started earlier this year.
In July, too, the market prices for tokens and coins lagged behind the performance of crypto stocks. Publicly traded crypto companies gained an average of 23.9% in their stock price by month-end. Coinbase shares skyrocketed in mid-July in response to the outcome of the Ripple lawsuit and stayed above $100 per share for a week, closing out the month at +32.19%.
MicroStrategy posted a similarly bullish monthly close at +27.25%. However, mining companies once again stood out as the top performers, with Stronghold Digital Mining shares increasing almost 75% while TeraWulf and Riot Platforms saw gains of over 50% from their early July levels.
The Cointelegraph Research team
Cointelegraph’s Research department comprises some of the best talents in the blockchain industry. Bringing together academic rigor and filtered through practical, hard-won experience, the researchers on the team are committed to bringing the most accurate, insightful content available on the market.
With decades of combined experience in traditional finance, business, engineering, technology and research, the Cointelegraph Research team is perfectly positioned to put its combined talents to proper use with the latest Investor Insights Report.
The opinions expressed in this article are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual or on any specific security or investment product.