• Ethereum surged more than 9% on Wednesday as the crypto sector awaits the Ethereum hard fork
  • Private-sector hires were sharply lower last month, falling from 680,000 in June to 330,000 new workers in July.

Following less-than-prime jobs data and Fed Vice Chairman’s market-moving remarks at a virtual appearance, Wall Street indices slumped on Wednesday. Widespread concerns over the Delta variant may have also added on to the markets losses, but cryptos inched higher.

The Fed’s Richard Clarida said that interest-rate hikes could start as early as the end of next year, adding that the rapid spread of the variant may stunt the country’s economic growth. 

Private-sector hires in US firms were sharply lower last month, falling from 680,000 in June to 330,000 new workers in July, according to an ADP employment report.

Following the onslaught of news, the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average both fell 1% and 0.5%, respectively. 

Small wins were made by the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite. Robinhood Markets Inc. (HOOD) touched $85, hiking around 53% on Wednesday. The popular retail trading platform has jumped 140% since its IPO price of $38 last week. Paycom (PAYC) was up 11% as well, following better-than-expected earnings. The software company’s revenue for Q2 hiked up 33.3% to $242.15 million. Only the Nasdaq was ahead by market close.

Equities

  • The Dow was down -0.92% to 34,792.
  • S&P 500 declined -0.46% to 4,402.
  • Nasdaq had an uptick of 0.13% to 14,770.

Insight

Founding Principal of BKCoin Capital, Kevin Kang, weighed in on Wednesday’s markets activity.

“I think the market is translating the big miss on jobs reports and the Fed staying its course with accommodative policies. We can see the divergence between the S&P 500 and Nasdaq as low interest rates are good for growth stocks. Also crypto seems to be running on the back of SEC chair Gary Gensler making positive comments regarding crypto regulations as he said the lack of crypto regulation isn’t a good thing for the advancement of the technology and he was pro-innovation,” Kang, CFA, told Blockworks. “The sentiment in the market seems to have flipped completely these past two weeks as the market brushed off the news yesterday that the SEC will regulate cryptocurrency markets to the maximum extent possible.”

Tesla shares hit an intraday high of $724.90 following the news, while ether and bitcoin continued to hike up 8% and 5%, respectively.

As the S&P 500 fell Wednesday morning, Tesla shares and Bitcoin traded higher. Source: TradingView

In decentralized finance (DeFi), Genesis reported continued demand for DeFi tokens and ethereum lending in their Q2 Markets Observation report on Wednesday. While bitcoin trading previously accounted for 80% of overall spot trading, the largest cryptocurrency has fallen to 47% in Q2. However, ether has risen to 25% of overall trading volumes on the desk.

DeFi

  • Uniswap is trading at $23.29 with a total value locked of $4,497,369,839 up 1.1% in 24 hours at 4:00 pm ET. 
  • Chainlink is trading at $24.26, advancing 0.8% with trading volume at $1,228,574,228 in 24 hours at 4:00 pm ET.
  • DeFi:ETH is 31.1% at 4:00 pm ET.

Crypto

  • Bitcoin is trading around $39,731.30, up 3.64% in 24 hours at 4:00 pm ET.
  • Ether is trading around $2,711.06, advancing 8.87% in 24 hours at 4:00 pm ET.
  • ETH:BTC is at 0.0682, up 3.87% at 4:00 pm ET.
  • VIX is down -0.39% to 17.97 at 4:00 pm ET.

Insight

“Trends both in Genesis’s activity and the broader market confirm the changing role of bitcoin as the industry’s gateway asset, and highlight the emerging protagonism of Ethereum and decentralized finance,” said Matt Ballensweig, Head of Institutional Lending at Genesis. “Bitcoin’s dominance in terms of market cap declined from over 70% at the end of 2020 to under 45% at the end of Q2, as Ether and most of the main decentralized finance tokens more than doubled in price from the beginning of the year.”

Fixed Income

  • US 10-year treasury yields 1.184% as of 4:00 pm ET.

Commodities

  • Brent crude is down to $70.21 per barrel, declining -3.04%.
  • Gold fell -0.01% to $1,814.

Currencies

  • The US dollar strengethened 0.22%, according to the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index.

In other news…

Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) 1559, a form of ‘rent control’ on gas fees that comes at the expense of miners, is set to be implemented through Ethereum blockchain’s London hard fork, Blockworks reported on Wednesday.

We’re watching out for…

  • Bank of England’s interest rate decision will be announced on Thursday

That’s it for today’s markets wrap. I’ll see you back here tomorrow.

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  • Morgan Chittum is a New York-based reporter covering markets, NFTs, the metaverse and digital assets. Before Blockworks she was a street reporter at New York Daily News, where she wrote about homicide, extremist groups, state politics and other critical topics in New York. She was a Media and Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute, where she dabbled in data and investigative journalism. She is published in American Banker, Yahoo News, Chicago Tribune and more.