May 4, 2023

🥛 ETH is breakin’ records 🏆

GM. This is Milk Road, the newsletter that brings balance to the crypto galaxy. We use The Force of Memes and split hype from reality with our lightsabers.

It’s Thirsty Thursday, Roadies. Let’s get it:

  • The Fed raises interest rates 🔺

  • Graphs of the day: 60K ETH burned in April 📊

  • The impact of Shanghai 🤖

  • Balaji forfeits the million dollar bet 🍪

Prices as of 9am EST

Today’s edition is brought to you by Venom, a new Layer-0 blockchain whose testnet is live and seeing major adoption. Their first hackathon begins on May 8th, with $225K of prizes! 💰 


Yesterday was everyone’s least favorite day: Interest Rate Day. It’s worse than tax day & a DMV appointment combined. 

And it was another sh*tty one…

The central bank hiked up federal interest rates by 25 points.

That’s the highest that rates have been since September 2007…AKA the year Rihanna released Umbrella. Let that sink in

Here’s how the markets reacted:

  • BTC: -1.16%

  • ETH: -0.31%

  • NASDAQ: -0.46%

  • S&P500: -0.70%

And what did the Fed say? 

  • Powell said “the U.S. banking system is sound and resilient” and things have gotten better since March. Source? “Trust me, bro.”

  • Powell said “we’re much closer to the end of this than the beginning”

Translation: Yeah, we still have no idea what’s gonna happen.

The next decision is in June…brace yourselves.

Here’s the best from Twitter:


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1/ Daily Bitcoin transactions hit an ATH Monday

That’s right, the OG crypto hit a new PR. #Gains

There were 682,280 transactions Monday. That’s a 255% increase from the last ATH set on Dec. 14, 2017 (490K.)

Why? BRC-20. It launched in March as a way for people to mint tokens on the Bitcoin blockchain.

In a nutshell – it’s bringing meme coins, like PEPE, to Bitcoin. It uses the Ordinals protocol to make it all happen.

BRC-20s are crypto’s new shiny coin so no wonder it’s getting so much action. There were 372K inscriptions on the network Monday, more than half of the day’s total transactions.

Ordinals walked so BRC-20s could run.

2/ There were $72M in digital asset outflows last week

This is the second week in a row of net outflows. Bitcoin saw the most ($46M.)


So what? People were spooked last week by the threat of hiked federal interest rates.

When rates go up, spending on risky assets goes down. (*cough crypto cough*). And turns out those folks were right, given the Fed’s 25-point rise yesterday.

Buckle up, bear szn might be upon us.

3/ 60K ETH ($113M) was burned in April

That’s the most ETH burned in a 30-day period since The Merge. *Burn baby burn*

Ultra Sound Money

Why the uptick? Memecoin mania.

People are goin’ wild trading coins like PEPE on Ethereum-based decentralized exchanges. The more Ethereum is used, the more ETH is burned.

“Burn” might sound scary, but it’s good for the network – it keeps the asset deflationary and the supply low.

Scarcity = potentially higher price.

4/ The number of stablecoins on exchanges is at a 2-year low

There are ~21B stablecoins held on centralized exchanges right now, the lowest balance since May 2021.

This includes stablecoins like USDT, USDC, & BUSD (Binance’s stablecoin.)

Why? Investors are scared.

  • Regulators told Paxos to stop minting BUSD in February

  • USDC depegged from the U.S. dollar after Circle (its issuer) said it had cash reserves at now-collapsed SVB

Both tokens’ market cap has steadily dropped in recent months.

You know sh*t has hit the fan when what’s supposed to be the safest part of crypto isn’t as safe anymore.

Stablecoins, ain’t lookin’ so stable.


It’s been 3 weeks since Ethereum’s Shanghai Upgrade. 

There’s a lot to unpack. So we asked the Milk Man to break it down for you Roadies.

There are 3 takeaways:

1/ Only 2% of staked ETH has been withdrawn so far

Those who staked aren’t rushing to get their tokens back. And when you factor in that only 15% of Ether is staked, the amount withdrawn amounts to only ~0.3% of the total supply.

There is ~500K ETH in the withdrawal queue at this time, but that’s a small slice of the pie.

2/ People are collecting their staking rewards, not the ETH they deposited

Turns out people are happy keeping their holdings staked and earning a juicy ~5% yield. Since staking rewards do not earn a yield, people have been cashing these out to redeploy elsewhere.

We predicted this in our pre-Shanghai article, but who’s keeping score?

3/ More ETH is being staked over time

More staking leads to a stronger network.

And with the direction this trend is headed in, Ethereum could be competing for the World’s Strongest Man Crypto before we know it.

While the upgrade may have slowed this trend down in the near term, all signs point to picking up again shortly.


White House proposes a 30% tax on electricity used for crypto mining. Like most introduced bills, it wouldn’t shock us if this doesn’t pass.

Balaji lost his $1M bet that BTC would hit $1M. Balaji: “I just burned a million to tell you they’re printing trillions.” Mic drop.

Sports Illustrated launches Box Office, a new NFT ticketing platform. Say goodbye to the days of showing up at a concert just to find out your ticket is fake 😒

April hacks totaled $100M+ in April. MEV bots accounted for ~$25M of this. Jaredfromsubway is eating good this month.



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DISCLAIMER: None of this is financial advice. This newsletter is strictly educational and is not investment advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any assets or to make any financial decisions. Please be careful and do your own research.