Bitcoin steadies around crucial $6,500 level
Digital currencies are trading marginally lower Friday, giving back some of yesterday’s gains that came after a prominent SEC official said both bitcoin and Ether shouldn’t be classified as securities.
While market consensus was that bitcoin wasn’t a security, Ether, because of its use in most initial coin offering (ICO) sales, was unclear.
“Based on my understanding of the present state of ether, the ethereum network and its decentralized structure, current offers and sales of ether aren’t securities transactions,” said William Hinman, director of corporate finance at the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Read: Bitcoin and Ether rally after SEC official says they aren’t securities
After Thursday’s volatility, it has been a quiet start to Friday. Bitcoin, the worlds No. 1 digital currency, has given back gains, but is well off Wednesday’s low. A single bitcoin BTCUSD, -1.96% was last worth $6,576.24, down 1.3%, since Thursday 5 p.m. on the Kraken digital currency exchange.
The $6,500 has been touted as an important level with one prominent technical analyst saying once this level was breached the next support level isn’t until $5,500.
Are Ether futures around the corner?
After yesterday’s SEC announcement, proponents of Ether, the currency which runs on the Ethereum network, began to contemplate the idea of Ether futures, one that has been pushed back in the past due to the lack of clarity around its regulatory standing.
“We are pleased with the SEC’s decision to provide clarity with respect to current Ether transactions. This announcement clears a key stumbling block for Ether futures, the case for which we’ve been considering since we launched the first bitcoin futures in December 2017,” said Chris Concannon, president and COO at Cboe Global Markets in a statement.
Ether is the second-largest digital currency with a market cap of $49.7 billion, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
Read: Here’s why bitcoin is falling—and it isn’t just the Coinrail exchange hack
Altcoins surrender some gains
After some altcoins, coins alternative to bitcoin, posted double-digit returns Thursday, most open Friday a little lower.
Ether ETHUSD, -3.04% which rose 11% Thursday, is lower by 1.7% at $509.58, Bitcoin Cash BCHUSD, -3.48% is off 2.5% at $875.00, Litecoin LTCUSD, -4.19% is down 2.9% to $99.23 and Ripple’s XRP XRPUSD, -2.67% has lost 2.4% to 55 cents.
The Cboe July futures contract XBTN8, -1.55% is trading 0.6% lower at $6,595, while the CME June contract BTCM8, -1.81% is at $6,570, down 1%.
CryptoWatch: Check bitcoin and other cryptocurrency prices, performance and market capitalization—all on one
Aaron Hankin is a MarketWatch reporter in New York who covers cryptocurrency and financial markets.
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