Bitcoin (BTC)’s price of $29,735 barely held above a month-low after Tuesday’s economic data confirmed that the U.S. is still in growth mode. Traders braced for what now seems to be a near 100 percent certainty of a Federal Reserve rate increase next week.

Bitcoin, which seemed to be on the verge of a price surge when it reached as high as $30,800 last week is currently down 0.7% in the past 24 hour and just below the $30,000 level that has been the support for much of this past month.

Other major cryptos are mixed. Ether, which is the second-largest token in terms of market capitalization, was trading at $1.893 on Monday. XRP was trading at 76 cents – up more than 4 percent – after a favorable ruling last week in Ripple’s ongoing court battle with the SEC. But ADA and SOL, the native cryptos for smart contract platforms Cardano & Solana were down 2%, 3.6% & 5% respectively.

The U.S. Census Bureau’s retail sales report for June shows some weakness. The headline number rose 0.2% in June, compared to forecasts of 0.5%, and 0.5% for May. The retail sales “control” group, which removes some components in order to get a more accurate measure of consumer spending, rose 0.6% last month, more than twice the pace of May and well ahead of expectations for a 0.3% decline.

Joseph Brusuelas is chief economist at RSM. He said, “Score another victory for team soft landing.” He pointed out that the control group’s average 3-month annualized growth is 2.1%, which implies a modest upward risk to his team’s forecast of 1.7% GDP in Q2.

The CME FedWatch Tool shows that traders have virtually eliminated any doubts about the outcome of the Federal Open Market Committee’s (FOMC’s) meeting next week. They now price in a 97% chance of a further 25 basis-point rate hike.

The equity markets rose on the back of encouraging earnings for the second quarter from Bank of America, and other major financial service organizations. This trend continued from last week when JP Morgan Chase announced significant gains in revenue and net income. Both the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (which is a component of S&P 500) and S&P 500 closed with gains of 0.7%.

Jake Boyle, the director of retail crypto broker Caleb & Brown in an email to CoinDesk called the drop below $30,000 a “natural consolidation”.

Boyle wrote that there was “perhaps a little bit too much euphoria” following Ripple’s apparent victory against the SEC. The court decision triggered a flood of capital back into the ecosystem.

He also pointed out “a shift in sentiment that will keep Bitcoin, and many other digital assets, moving upwards.”

Boyle wrote, “There will be further pullbacks.” The trajectory is clear. “We’re on a positive trajectory.”

UPDATE (18 July 2023 at 20:32 UTC). Updates the prices, adds closing equity index figures, and Boyle quotes.

James Rubin is the editor.