Watch video of altFINS CEO explain reasons for last week’s pullback, his outlook for 2023 and how to trade it.

Both US Equities and major Cryptocurrencies closed last week lower because of higher-than-expected US PCE inflation data, published on Friday 24th February 2023. The NASDAQ index closed lower by (NASDAQ⬇️3.3%) at $11.395 while the S&P 500 lower by (S&P500⬇️3.3%), at $3.943, compared to a week ago. The Ethereum cryptocurrency dropped by (ETH⬇️3.3%), closing at 1.640 USDT, while Bitcoin’s price corrected lower to 23.561 USDT, which was lower by (BTC⬇️3.9%) compared to a week ago.

Last week, the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) report was released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), which showed US inflation rose 5.4% in January, with core PCE raising by 4.7%. The core PCE is Fed’s preferred measurement of inflation, and this came higher than expected by economists, who predicted it will raise 4.4% p.a. This suggested that the inflation is not yet under control and the Fed will not be in rush to stop raising rates and may even keep them higher for longer.

With regards to the US headline CPI, inflation turned also slightly higher in January 2023 than many economists expected as rising shelter, gas and fuel prices took their toll on customers in the beginning of 2023. It is expected that the increase in YoY US CPI for February 2023 eased to 6.2%, with the core CPI easing to 5.5%. However, the higher-than-expected inflation PCE reading published on Friday sends new speculations that the Fed will have to hike 0.50% at the FOMC meeting on March 22nd, 2023, and then again by 0.25% in May 2023, depending on the next inflation readings.

The fall in cryptocurrencies follows a market-wide decline. The bullish sentiment was also negatively affected by large amounts of long liquidations. According to Cointelegraph, the Bitcoin futures market saw around $230M in liquidations on long positions, suggesting the reason why the Bitcoin price went down.

While the correlation between the top two cryptocurrencies and US stocks hit its lowest level since 2021, they continue to be closely correlated to the stock market and are affected by macroeconomic events (see chart above). This adds to their most recent correction in prices, too. However, in the long run, many market participants expect the top cryptocurrencies and digital assets to perform well this year, especially as more TradFi institutions like banks and brokerages turn to digital cash transaction and settlement processing.

The Digital Asset market sentiment (Crypto Fear & Greed Index) dropped by 8 points to 50/100, indicating Neutral. The Total Cryptocurrency Market Cap dropped to 1.08 billion, which was lower by ⬇️3.5% compared to a week ago. Ethereum (ETH)’s Dominance remained at around 18.4% while Bitcoin (BTC)’s Dominance hovered around 42.2%.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR: The next monetary policy meeting for the FED: March 21–22nd, 2023 and for the ECB: March 16th, 2023; US CPI for February 2023 will be released on March 14th, 2023, at 08:30 AM ET.

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