15/05 Market Recap: Crypto Rebounds After CPI, 2 Major Hacks


Bitcoin has experienced a whirlwind of price changes within the last month. After a sharp rise to nearly $64,000, a sudden correction caused it to dip to $60,150. However, the resilience of the bulls was evident as they managed to keep the price from falling below $60,000, eventually rising to $64,000 after the US CPI reports were unexpectedly bullish.

U.S. inflation slowed slightly in April, with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rising 0.3% month-over-month, lower than the 0.4% forecast and March’s 0.4% increase. Year-over-year, CPI was up 3.4%, matching estimates and lower than March’s 3.5% rise. Core CPI, excluding food and energy, rose 0.3% month-over-month and 3.6% year-over-year, also in line with expectations. Bitcoin’s price jumped over 1% to $64,000 following the inflation report, as easing inflation raised hopes for potential future interest rate cuts.

The broader altcoin market appears to be showing small signs of recovery, but not as fast as Bitcoin. As Bitcoin’s market cap stands at just over $1.268 trillion, its dominance over altcoins has increased to 54.3%, indicating a mixed sentiment among investors as they navigate through the ups and downs of the market. Ethereum (ETH) has seen a small 2.7% increase, currently at $2,960. Major winners on the day are Bittensor TAO, Arweave, FLOKI and Sei which are all over 10% for the day. FLOKI is on an impressive run with a 30% gain over the last week, now at $0.00022. On the flip side, only a few tokens are down, most notably Ribbon Finance, which is down 20% on the day after it’s conversion to AEVO.

Sonne Finance was forced to pause operations after suffering a $20 million hack on May 14th. Around 10:30pm UTC, a hacker exploited Sonne’s USD Coin (USDC) and Wrapped Ether (WETH) contracts, draining $20 million worth of WETH, Velo (VELO), soVELO and Wrapped USDC before Sonne could react. The attack appears to have been a “donation attack” targeting a known bug in the Compound v2 code that Sonne used, leading to criticism that Sonne proceeded despite known risks. SONNE is down 56% on the day.

In a separate incident, crypto investment firm BlockTower Capital’s main $1.7 billion hedge fund was also partially drained by fraudsters. The funds have not been recovered and the hackers remain at large, despite BlockTower hiring blockchain forensics analysts to investigate. BlockTower has notified partners about the breach. This follows a previous $1.5 million loss for BlockTower during the $2 million Dexible exchange exploit in February 2023.

While total crypto hacking losses declined 54.3% to $1.7 billion in 2023 compared to 2022, the number of hacking incidents actually increased from 219 to 231 year-over-year. The first quarter of 2024 has already seen $336 million in losses to web3 hacks and scams, though this represents a 23% improvement over the same period in 2023.

Overall, the incidents highlight the persistent security challenges facing DeFi protocols and crypto investment firms from skilled hackers exploiting code vulnerabilities.