Ethereum price finally beats its 2018 all-time high, surpassing $1,428

A three-year hodl for Ether investors finally comes good as the largest altcoin surges into unknown territory on Tuesday.

Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin by market cap, finally reached new all-time highs against the U.S. dollar on Jan. 19.

ETH/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: Tradingview

Ether price is back after 3 years

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView showed ETH/USD beat its existing record during Tuesday trading, passing $1,428 on Bitstamp.

The achievement, which resets a price ceiling in place since Jan. 13, 2018, came as Ether gained 15% on the day, with year-to-date returns at nearly 100%.

The altcoin benefited from interest in decentralized finance (DeFi) trading built around the Ethereum network, within the context of a broader altcoin resurgence which began taking shape earlier in January.

"#Ethereum $1,400. If this continues running according to Fibonacci, we might hit $1,600," Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe summarized to Twitter followers on Tuesday.  

Van de Poppe had previously forecast that Fibonacci levels could take ETH/USD as high as $2,600 in the short term.

"Ethereum's daily transaction volume is going parabolic," Ryan Watkins, a researcher at Messari, added.

"It now settles $12 billion in transactions daily - $3 billion more than Bitcoin. Imagine not being bullish $ETH."

The Concorde of crypto?

As Cointelegraph reported, the Ethereum network now settles around 28% more transactions daily than Bitcoin (BTC), but remains plagued by high fees as a result of increased usage.

In a dedicated analysis released this week, popularinvestment strategist Lyn Alden compared Ethereum as a concept to Concorde, arguing that it may yet fail to reach the mainstream in a similar way to the supersonic airliner.

"Maybe Ethereum will iterate until it finds a sustainable place for itself," she wrote.

"On the other hand, Ethereum could end up being weighed down by its own complexity and lack of broad economic use, like the Concorde."

‘Pay attention’ — Grayscale adds 18x the Bitcoin mined supply in one day

Bitcoin worth $600 million gets taken off the market as BTC/USD struggles to cement support for a retest of $40,000.

Asset manager Grayscale added 18 times more Bitcoin (BTC) than miners added to the supply in just one day on Jan. 18.

As various data sources confirm, Grayscale, which remains the biggest institutional buyer in the Bitcoin space, purchased a total of 16,244 BTC ($607 million) on Monday.

BTC buys accelerate again

The giant sums are some of the biggest on record and are an order of magnitude above what even Grayscale was attempting just last week. The company previously saw daily buys but stopped over the holiday period and reduced its allocations in the first week of the new year.

Monday’s activities bring its total assets under management (AUM) to almost $23 billion. As Cointelegraph reported, the total increased tenfold during 2020.

“Grayscale were buying $251 M of #Bitcoin on avg per week in Q4 2020,” Danny Scott, CEO of United Kingdom-based cryptocurrency exchange CoinCorner, tweeted.

“Last week they did $700 M in 1 day... And today $590 M... Pay attention.”
Grayscale daily Bitcoin additions chart. Source: GBTC Bitcoin Tracker/ Twitter

Unashamedly bullish on Bitcoin

The move underscores both Grayscale’s continued faith in Bitcoin as a long-term play and that of institutions choosing Bitcoin over any other form of macro asset.

Despite mixed messages from fellow asset manager Guggenheim, set to begin its BTC exposure this month, industry sources state that public announcements hide the true extent of institutional involvement.

“There is huge institutional demand and most of it is silent,” Gemini exchange co-founder Tyler Winklevoss said last week while berating gold bug Peter Schiff for claiming that players were actually not interested in Bitcoin.

Grayscale Bitcoin holdings vs. BTC/USD chart. Source: CryptoQuant

Data from on-chain analytics resource CryptoQuant meanwhile reveals changes in Grayscale’s buying habits, with late 2020 seeing the largest short-term increase in BTC holdings for the year.

Earlier, analysts at JPMorgan argued that inflows into the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust would need to maintain $100 million per day in order for Bitcoin to have a chance at reclaiming $40,000 price levels.

Bitcoin thermocap metric shows BTC price is still in the ‘low end’ of bull cycle

Cold hard numbers are showing why Bitcoin moons and dumps — and the reasons are more straightforward than you might imagine.

Bitcoin (BTC) is still at the “low end” of a 2021 bubble, new data tracking miner and investor behavior suggests. 

In the latest signal that BTC price action still has major growth potential, researcher Geert Jan Cap showed bullish signs coming from Bitcoin’s thermocap.

Thermocap suggests Bitcoin just getting started

Thermocap is a metric which aims to track Bitcoin price cycles based on actions taken by miners and investors with regards to buying and selling BTC.

It employs the so-called thermocap multiple, which divides the Bitcoin price on a certain day by the cumulative block subsidy, or all rewards earned by miners from day one.

The resulting value gives an insight into how profitable it is to sell at a given price point, and therefore why price volatility may have ensued at various times in Bitcoin’s history.

“It shows when a bubble in the price was present with a very high signal to noise ratio,” an introduction to the metric explains, adding that thermocap also “enables comparison of the bubble peaks” and “appears to show a relatively constant value of the multiple for ‘healthy’ price levels” among other benefits.

As of Jan. 17, 2021, Bitcoin’s thermocap multiple stood at 17.5, down from a recent high of 20 earlier in the month.

Given that bubble activity historically occurs between 16 and 60, it is immediately apparent that Bitcoin still has considerable room to explore this bull cycle.

Bitcoin thermocap vs. BTC/USD chart. Source: Geert Jan Cap/ Twitter

“We're still in the low end of the '21 bubble phase,” Cap summarized in accompanying Twitter comments.

Weak hand sell-offs define BTC bear markets

In terms of how hodlers cause and react to price events, meanwhile, statistician Willy Woo believes that a cycle of weak hands selling during every bear market in Bitcoin’s lifespan is a provable phenomenon which takes precedence over changing narratives.

On Sunday, Woo highlighted Bitcoin’s realized price — U.S. dollars stored in the network — being higher than the spot price during bottoms both in late 2018 and March 2020. In the former instance, BTC/USD fell 85% versus its prior top near $20,000.

“Weak hands (buyers who buy under FOMO) always capitulate allowing strong handed thoughtful buyers to get bargains,” he commented.

“This happens in EVERY bear cycle.”
Bitcoin realized price chart. Source: Willy Woo/ Twitter

The comments are particularly timely given recent market trends as Bitcoin climbed to $42,000, sold off to $30,000 and then hit $40,000 once more, all within a week.

As Cointelegraph reported, data highlighted small-balance wallets decreasing, while the number of wallets with a balance of 1,000 BTC or more grew. A transfer of bitcoins from small investors to whales was in progress, analysts warned, appealing to sellers not to part with their funds during such volatile conditions.

“The narrative for each bear and bull market changes cycle to cycle, but the effective mechanism is the same,” Woo concluded.

“I've found little value reading market news and industry narratives, IMO tracking capital flows in relation to the behaviour patterns of participants is better.”

Bitcoin meets Biden: 5 things to watch for BTC price this week

The week in which the U.S. presidency changes sees limp stocks and a rangebound Bitcoin, but what could provide a fresh shake-up?

Bitcoin (BTC) is back in familiar territory as the week begins after a weekend spent ranging in its new, albeit large, trading corridor above $30,000.

With the United States presidential inauguration just days away, Cointelegraph takes a look at what else may be able to shake up BTC price action.

DXY keeps reversing losses

The inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden comes as the strength of the U.S. dollar continues to rebound.

On Monday, the U.S. dollar currency index (DXY), which measures USD relative to a basket of major trading partner currencies, hit its highest level since Dec. 21.

The sustained upside in DXY tends to mean that Bitcoin growth takes a breather, this inverse correlation forming a conspicuous pattern throughout 2020. In the event, BTC/USD had little to lose during the latest gains, the majority of which were preserved despite huge volatility.

DXY was likewise unfazed by Biden’s decision to spend another $1.9 trillion in debt-financed coronavirus support, something that was described last week as “another multi trillion dollar advertisement for Bitcoin” by Gemini exchange co-founder, Tyler Winklevoss.

As Cointelegraph reported, however, analysts still favor dollar weakness to continue in the long term. Even traditional market participants continued to eye the extent of USD supply increases, a move which has shocked many into considering Bitcoin as an alternative store of value.

“A currency market isn't different from any other market,” William Dinning, chief investment officer of U.K. fund manager Waverton Asset Management, told the Wall Street Journal over the weekend.

“If there's a lot of potatoes available, it's going to be cheaper. If there's a lot of dollars available, it's going to be weak.”

Nonetheless, incoming Treasury Secretary Janet Biden has said that the U.S. will not deliberately aim to maintain a weak dollar for the benefit of trade advantages.

U.S. dollar currency index 1-day candle chart. Source: TradingView

Stocks need a rest, says analyst

On the markets, stocks showed indecisiveness as the week got underway, having calmed down from Biden’s announcement.

Asia saw mixed performance, and with Wall Street still to open at press time, U.S. futures were just a tad higher from Friday.

The lackluster gains were curious for some, coming despite the fact that China had delivered Q4 economic growth statistics which dwarfed any expectations. As Bloomberg reported, the world’s second-largest economy grew 6.5% during the quarter, making it the only major economy to avoid a coronavirus contraction last year.

“Markets needed a breather or even a pull back to justify reflationary expectations,” Ben Emons, managing director of global macro strategy at Medley Global Advisors, explained to the publication.

As Cointelegraph reported, Bitcoin continues to outpace any traditional assets in terms of gains in 2021, with correlation trending further and further towards zero for both stocks and safe havens such as precious metals.

Bitcoin rolling 90-day returns correlation. Source: Digital Assets Data

Spotlight on “Altseason”

Also taking a breather in recent days is Bitcoin itself. After weeks of intensely volatile trading conditions, investors were treated to a quiet weekend, which also came as a welcome surprise to exchanges.

Previously, U.S. platforms Coinbase and Kraken had suffered outages at critical price points, and fellow trading platform eToro last week warned that it may have to limit Bitcoin buy orders should the weekend produce fresh volatility.

In the event, things were much quieter than anticipated, thanks to BTC/USD remaining rangebound with no real changes up or down.

As Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe noted, attention was instead beginning to refocus away from Bitcoin towards altcoins.

In a tweet on Monday, he reiterated the narrative that other cryptocurrencies would begin to take the limelight in the short and mid term. He summarized:

“Most likely going to occur at this point is the following. Relief rallies all across the #altcoin markets. FOMO on altcoins. #Bitcoin corrects one more time -> altcoins making HL and retesting.

A glance at the rankings confirmed the beginning of what is popularly called “Altseason,” with five of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market cap posting daily gains of more than 20%. In terms of weekly performance, seven tokens were up by more than 100%.

Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin, was itself heading towards all-time highs, climbing past $1,200 again after a dip which saw it at one point lose $1,000 support.

With that, Bitcoin’s market cap dominance was slipping further on Monday, reaching 66.3% compared to 69.5% at the start of the year.

Bitcoin market cap dominance percentage. Source: Tradingview

Price action leaves all-time highs untouched

For the spot market, Bitcoin was steadily decreasing volatility as the week began. The past three days saw a narrowing of the trading range within the $30,000-$40,000 corridor, with a pattern of lower highs and higher lows known as compression taking over.

As Van de Poppe noted last week, this is a welcome sign which gives the market time to recoup the strength required for an ultimate breakout of the compression structure. In Bitcoin’s case, this should result in a push towards or even through current all-time highs of $42,000.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

Considering the longer term, meanwhile, he forecast that in this bull cycle, Bitcoin would reach between $275,000 and $350,000. For Ether, the top lay between $7,500 and $12,500, he told Twitter followers on Friday.

For fellow analyst filbfilb, meanwhile, there was still a way to go before any form of significant upwards volatility returned to Bitcoin.

“Interesting fractal going on here. Turn break 40k and turn into support and its a full moon mission,” he summarized to subscribers of his dedicated Telegram channel, highlighting a chart structure which may allow a trip to the top of the trading corridor.

“If the fractal plays out we might pump it to 40k and then retrace. Break the diag and turn it to resistance and maybe we need to play about more in this range.”

Fundamentals hit new record highs

Finally, a familiar bull signal returned to investors’ radar in recent days. A classic sign that further upside is in store for price, Bitcoin’s network fundamentals hit fresh all-time highs.

Bitcoin hash rate and difficulty. Source: Digital Assets Data

For hash rate, which gives an estimate of the computing power dedicated to the Bitcoin blockchain, this came in the form of 155 exahashes per second (EH/s) on Sunday.

The metric has been on a near-constant ascent since the end of December, adding 25 EH/s in just two weeks.

Just as bullish was difficulty, arguably the most important fundamental metric for Bitcoin, as it offers an insight into miner health and competitiveness.

After a 10.8% increase at the last automated readjustment on Jan. 9, difficulty hit a new record high of 20,607,418,304,385. The next readjustment, due in four days’ time, will add another 6%, current estimates say.

Sustained upside for both indicators has traditionally been associated with price gains, these occurring after a grace period which can last up to several months.

Bitcoin meets Biden: 5 things to watch for BTC price this week

The week in which the U.S. presidency changes sees limp stocks and a rangebound Bitcoin, but what could provide a fresh shake-up?

Bitcoin (BTC) is back in familiar territory as the week begins after a weekend spent ranging in its new, albeit large, trading corridor above $30,000.

With the United States presidential inauguration just days away, Cointelegraph takes a look at what else may be able to shake up BTC price action.

DXY keeps reversing losses

The inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden comes as the strength of the U.S. dollar continues to rebound.

On Monday, the U.S. dollar currency index (DXY), which measures USD relative to a basket of major trading partner currencies, hit its highest level since Dec. 21.

The sustained upside in DXY tends to mean that Bitcoin growth takes a breather, this inverse correlation forming a conspicuous pattern throughout 2020. In the event, BTC/USD had little to lose during the latest gains, the majority of which were preserved despite huge volatility.

DXY was likewise unfazed by Biden’s decision to spend another $1.9 trillion in debt-financed coronavirus support, something that was described last week as “another multi trillion dollar advertisement for Bitcoin” by Gemini exchange co-founder, Tyler Winklevoss.

As Cointelegraph reported, however, analysts still favor dollar weakness to continue in the long term. Even traditional market participants continued to eye the extent of USD supply increases, a move which has shocked many into considering Bitcoin as an alternative store of value.

“A currency market isn't different from any other market,” William Dinning, chief investment officer of U.K. fund manager Waverton Asset Management, told the Wall Street Journal over the weekend.

“If there's a lot of potatoes available, it's going to be cheaper. If there's a lot of dollars available, it's going to be weak.”

Nonetheless, incoming Treasury Secretary Janet Biden has said that the U.S. will not deliberately aim to maintain a weak dollar for the benefit of trade advantages.

U.S. dollar currency index 1-day candle chart. Source: TradingView

Stocks need a rest, says analyst

On the markets, stocks showed indecisiveness as the week got underway, having calmed down from Biden’s announcement.

Asia saw mixed performance, and with Wall Street still to open at press time, U.S. futures were just a tad higher from Friday.

The lackluster gains were curious for some, coming despite the fact that China had delivered Q4 economic growth statistics which dwarfed any expectations. As Bloomberg reported, the world’s second-largest economy grew 6.5% during the quarter, making it the only major economy to avoid a coronavirus contraction last year.

“Markets needed a breather or even a pull back to justify reflationary expectations,” Ben Emons, managing director of global macro strategy at Medley Global Advisors, explained to the publication.

As Cointelegraph reported, Bitcoin continues to outpace any traditional assets in terms of gains in 2021, with correlation trending further and further towards zero for both stocks and safe havens such as precious metals.

Bitcoin rolling 90-day returns correlation. Source: Digital Assets Data

Spotlight on “Altseason”

Also taking a breather in recent days is Bitcoin itself. After weeks of intensely volatile trading conditions, investors were treated to a quiet weekend, which also came as a welcome surprise to exchanges.

Previously, U.S. platforms Coinbase and Kraken had suffered outages at critical price points, and fellow trading platform eToro last week warned that it may have to limit Bitcoin buy orders should the weekend produce fresh volatility.

In the event, things were much quieter than anticipated, thanks to BTC/USD remaining rangebound with no real changes up or down.

As Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe noted, attention was instead beginning to refocus away from Bitcoin towards altcoins.

In a tweet on Monday, he reiterated the narrative that other cryptocurrencies would begin to take the limelight in the short and mid term. He summarized:

“Most likely going to occur at this point is the following. Relief rallies all across the #altcoin markets. FOMO on altcoins. #Bitcoin corrects one more time -> altcoins making HL and retesting.

A glance at the rankings confirmed the beginning of what is popularly called “Altseason,” with five of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market cap posting daily gains of more than 20%. In terms of weekly performance, seven tokens were up by more than 100%.

Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin, was itself heading towards all-time highs, climbing past $1,200 again after a dip which saw it at one point lose $1,000 support.

With that, Bitcoin’s market cap dominance was slipping further on Monday, reaching 66.3% compared to 69.5% at the start of the year.

Bitcoin market cap dominance percentage. Source: Tradingview

Price action leaves all-time highs untouched

For the spot market, Bitcoin was steadily decreasing volatility as the week began. The past three days saw a narrowing of the trading range within the $30,000-$40,000 corridor, with a pattern of lower highs and higher lows known as compression taking over.

As Van de Poppe noted last week, this is a welcome sign which gives the market time to recoup the strength required for an ultimate breakout of the compression structure. In Bitcoin’s case, this should result in a push towards or even through current all-time highs of $42,000.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

Considering the longer term, meanwhile, he forecast that in this bull cycle, Bitcoin would reach between $275,000 and $350,000. For Ether, the top lay between $7,500 and $12,500, he told Twitter followers on Friday.

For fellow analyst filbfilb, meanwhile, there was still a way to go before any form of significant upwards volatility returned to Bitcoin.

“Interesting fractal going on here. Turn break 40k and turn into support and its a full moon mission,” he summarized to subscribers of his dedicated Telegram channel, highlighting a chart structure which may allow a trip to the top of the trading corridor.

“If the fractal plays out we might pump it to 40k and then retrace. Break the diag and turn it to resistance and maybe we need to play about more in this range.”

Fundamentals hit new record highs

Finally, a familiar bull signal returned to investors’ radar in recent days. A classic sign that further upside is in store for price, Bitcoin’s network fundamentals hit fresh all-time highs.

Bitcoin hash rate and difficulty. Source: Digital Assets Data

For hash rate, which gives an estimate of the computing power dedicated to the Bitcoin blockchain, this came in the form of 155 exahashes per second (EH/s) on Sunday.

The metric has been on a near-constant ascent since the end of December, adding 25 EH/s in just two weeks.

Just as bullish was difficulty, arguably the most important fundamental metric for Bitcoin, as it offers an insight into miner health and competitiveness.

After a 10.8% increase at the last automated readjustment on Jan. 9, difficulty hit a new record high of 20,607,418,304,385. The next readjustment, due in four days’ time, will add another 6%, current estimates say.

Sustained upside for both indicators has traditionally been associated with price gains, these occurring after a grace period which can last up to several months.

Bitcoin slides under $35K despite Biden unveiling $1.9 trillion stimulus

Positive reactions to a $1.9 trillion stimulus package combines to squash Bitcoin's bullish sentiment.

Bitcoin (BTC) fell below $35,000 on Jan. 15 as renewed strength in the U.S. dollar piled pressure on the largest cryptocurrency. BTC bounced off support at $34,300 and is trading at $35,300 at the time of writing. 

BTC/USD 4-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: Tradingvidw

Bitcoin heads back towards $30,000

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView showed BTC/USD hitting its lowest in over 24 hours at press time on Friday, with $34,000 so far acting as support.

The previous day saw the pair reclaim $40,000 for the briefest instant before falling back to range in a corridor which had formed at the start of the week. The latest drop reinforced the assumption that Bitcoin would continue in this corridor, which has $30,000 as support and $40,000 as a rough ceiling.

"#Bitcoin consolidating is very healthy for the market after the massive impulse move to $41,500," Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe explained in a series of tweets.

"#Bitcoin is approaching a bounce area here as we rejected the crucial resistance around $40,000. Benefits the fact of further consolidation before continuation of the upwards momentum. Completely healthy."

Halving analysis suggests "7X upside potential"

The fresh downturn for Bitcoin coincided with an uptick in the U.S. dollar currency index (DXY) coming on the back of President-elect Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan. Despite the gravity of this USD supply expansion, markets appeared to react favorably to the plans, leading DXY upwards at the expense of Bitcoin, to which it typically exhibits inverse correlation.

"Context: dollar is breaking out on multiple timeframes. quite a strong recovery at a multi-month support area. some argue this is bad for bitcoin, gold, and risk-on assets, hence the narrative," Cointelegraph in-house analyst Joseph Young summarized.

BTC/USD (Bitstamp) vs. DXY (orange). Source: TradingView

Young noted that on derivatives markets, investors "buying the dip" was causing an extra headache, potentially dampening the prospects of a relief rally.

Zoom out, however, and Bitcoin was if anything underperforming compared to previous bull cycles. According to on-chain analytics resource Ecoinometrics, this left the door open for further conspicuous gains.

Bitcoin price post-halving comparison as of Jan. 15, 2021. Source: Ecoinometrics/ Twitter

"This bull market doesn't stop at $40k," part of a tweet with a comparative chart read.

"From the growth of the previous cycles we still have a 7x upside potential."

Bitcoin refuses to ‘die’ as BTC price hits $40K just three days after crash

Stubborn bulls are firmly back in the saddle, with Bitcoin adding $10,000 to its price in just three days.

Bitcoin (BTC) surged higher on Jan. 14, reaching $40,000 on Coinbase amid fresh evidence of new large buys on exchanges.

BTC/USD weekly price candles (Coinbase). Source: Tradingview

BTC price adds $10,000 in three days

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView tracked BTC/USD as the pair delivered even more bullish surprises during Thursday trading, adding over 17% in 24 hours.

The uptick is the latest bullish sign to come from Bitcoin price action, which just days ago focused on levels not much above $30,000.

The revisiting of $40,000 came hours after BTC/USD entered and appeared to flip a crucial resistance zone to support at around $38,000.

"That one needs to flip. If it does, we'll be eager for new all-time highs. If not, more consolidation likely," Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe summarized in a prior tweet.

Others were already bullish beforehand. Tyler Winklevoss, co-founder of exchange Gemini, referenced various press reports of a "crash" in Bitcoin as it slid to $30,250 earlier in the week. He told Twitter followers:

"They said #Bitcoin died on Monday, but now it's above 37k. Don't listen to the noise, stay focused."

"Did nocoiners really think #Bitcoin wouldn't bounce back? This is the year of the Metal Bull. $100k is inevitable," Blockstream chief strategy officer Samson Mow added.

Stimulus and buy-ins buoy Bitcoin bulls

Bears losing their grip complements wary sentiment on the U.S. dollar as President-elect Joe Biden is set to announce a new coronavirus stimulus package reportedly worth trillions of dollars. While official details were still forthcoming as of publication, it was thought that it would include personal stimulus checks of $2,000 to eligible Americans.

“I think positioning in risk assets is becoming a concern, so there could be a squeeze in the dollar near-term,” Shusuke Yamada, chief Japan FX strategist at Bank of America in Tokyo, told Reuters about the U.S. dollar outlook.

“I am focusing on gradual dollar weakness in 2021.”

The U.S. dollar currency index (DXY), with which Bitcoin traditionally shows inverse correlation, nonetheless continued its march higher on the day prior to announcements from Washington.

Bitcoin exchange outflows chart. Source: CryptoQuant

Accompanying that rise was a similar rebound in funds removals from Bitcoin exchanges. As noted by on-chain analytics resource CryptoQuant, a single hour on Thursday saw "unusual" outflows from three large trading platforms, indicating mass-buying had taken place.

Binance led the interest, with 6,051 BTC ($233 million) withdrawn during that time, followed by BitMEX with 951 BTC ($37 million).

"If it's an OTC deal, it would be a bullish signal as institutional investors are buying."

"Binance sent BTC to a couple of unknown cold wallets. These transactions could be related to internal transfers or OTC deals," CryptoQuant CEO Ki Young Ju told Cointelegraph in private comments.

As Cointelegraph reported, similar spikes in exchanges' outflows have occurred during recent upward price trends.

Bitcoin has actually only taken 2% of gold market cap, new data suggests

Getting to 10% of gold's market cap would mean that each bitcoin costs $154,000, says CryptoQuant.

Bitcoin (BTC) has much further to go to suck away even 10% of gold’s market cap than old data claims, a popular indicator reveals.

Highlighting numbers from Bitcoin’s realized cap on Jan. 12, Ki Young Ju, CEO of on-chain analytics resource CryptoQuant, said that the cryptocurrency had taken far less of gold’s market cap than previously claimed.

Realized cap cools Bitcoin numbers game

As Bitcoin grew in price towards the end of 2020 and hit all-time highs of $42,000 last week, a narrative appeared that investors were swapping gold for BTC, and that Bitcoin had thus taken around 7% of the precious metal’s market cap of $10 trillion.

Using realized cap, which calculates market cap in a different, more precise manner, the real “theft” from gold actually stands at 2%, says Ki.

Unlike market cap, the metric measures the price at which each bitcoin last moved, and excludes coins on centralized custodial exchanges, thus excluding speculative movements. The total is also kept lower by long-lost BTC, which will have last moved at likely far lower prices than today’s.

“People said $BTC took 7% of the Gold market cap. No, it's not. There are unclaimed, unreachable, and lost Bitcoins. Based on the realized cap, it's just 2%,” he tweeted alongside a realized cap chart.

“If digital gold replaces 10% of the $XAU market cap then the $BTC price would be $154k.”
Bitcoin realized cap chart. Source: Ki Young Ju/ Twitter

Bitcoin’s realized cap stood at $227 billion on Wednesday, while its standard market cap was $645 billion.

BTC performance beats gold fair and square

Despite its arguably slower progress, Bitcoin is still faring extremely well against gold, which failed to recoup its losses in BTC terms even as BTC/USD dropped to near $30,000 on Monday.

Bitcoin bought 18.6 ounces of the precious metal at publishing time, according to data from Buy Bitcoin Worldwide.

Bitcoin’s correlation to gold was trending towards zero this week, down markedly from highs seen in October.

Bitcoin rolling 90-day returns correlations chart. Source: Digital Assets Data

Previously, commentators noted that Bitcoin has already transferred all of gold’s $10 trillion market cap in its 12-year history.

As Cointelegraph reported, however, criticism from gold fans remains, with gold bug Peter Schiff casting doubt on both Bitcoin’s status as a safe haven and institutional investors’ interest in it.

“Bitcoin traded near $42K on Friday and near $30K on Monday. An asset that drops 28% over a weekend is not a safe-haven, a store of value, or a viable hedge against #inflation,” he tweeted this week.

“If you want to gamble on #Bitcoin, buy Bitcoin. But if you want to hedge against inflation buy #gold.”

‘Thankfully’ my son owns Bitcoin, says $140B asset management CEO

Howard Marks hints that he is becoming the latest Bitcoin naysayer to change his tune completely in a new memo to investors of Oaktree Capital.

Bitcoin (BTC) at $34,000 may have gained a new convert after billionaire investor Howard Marks admitted that he needed to change his "skeptical view."

In his latest investor memo dated Jan. 11, Marks, who is co-chairman and co-founder of the $140 billion Oaktree Capital Group, noted that while he was critical of Bitcoin during its 2017 bull run, his son had "thankfully" bought in. 

Marks on crypto: Do you own research

"Back in 2017, my memo 'There They Go Again... Again' included a section on cryptocurrencies in which I stated a high level of skepticism. This view has been a subject of much discussion for me and  Andrew, who is quite positive on Bitcoin and several others and thankfully owns a meaningful amount for our family," the memo reads.

"While the story is far from fully written, the least I can say is that my skeptical view has not borne out to date."

The past few months has become a notable for U-turns on Bitcoin's merits. As Cointelegraph reported, figures from investors to banks have challenged their bearish prognoses on the cryptocurrency, some even pledging to expose their portfolios to include it.

Marks did not make a similar commitment, but accepted the need to at least examine cryptocurrency and assess its potential.

"The nature of innovation generally is such that, in the beginning, only a few believe in something that seems absurd when compared to the deeply entrenched status quo," he wrote.

"When innovations work, it's only later that what first seemed crazy becomes consensus. Without attaining real knowledge of what's going on and attempting to fully understand the positive case, it's impossible to have a sufficiently informed view to warrant the dismissiveness that many of us exhibit in the face of innovation." 

Warren Buffett next?

Reactions to Marks were nonetheless more than favorable, given his previous reputation as a steadfast Bitcoin detractor.

"Really awesome to see billionaire Howard Marks talking so favorably about #Bitcoin!" Preston Pysh of The Investor's Podcast Network tweeted in response to the memo.

Fellow investment guru Lyn Alden, herself a public proponent of Bitcoin, even suggested that Mark's change in stance would lead stalwart critic Warren Buffett to cryptocurrency.

2021 thus leaves Bitcoin's remaining outspoken bears in an rapidly decreasing minority. Among them remains gold bug Peter Schiff, whose outright dismissal of Bitcoin continues to cause outrage on social media and beyond.

"Very few institutional investors are buying #Bitcoin," he claimed on Monda.

"It just that those few that are buying are extremely vocal about their positions. They need to convince others to buy to push up the price so they can sell. The financial media also gives them a platform to talk their books."

Tyler Winklevoss, co-founder of exchange Gemini, subsequently called Schiff's words "completely false."

Where does this 28% Bitcoin price drop rank in history? Not even in the top 5

At 28%, this weekend's BTC price action was decidedly average compared to the cryptocurrency's run-up to 2017 all-time highs.

Bitcoin (BTC) may have dipped 28% in recent days but analysts have already put the scale of the losses firmly in context. 

As noted on Jan.12 by Nathaniel Whittemore, host of The Breakdown Podcast, the period between 2016 and 2017 alone saw a grand total of six corrections that were larger than this week's drawdown.

BTC price correction bows to 2017

2017 is famous among market participants as being a record-breaking year for price action. In addition to 1,000% annual gains, Bitcoin saw multiple hurdles as it climbed to then all-time highs of near $20,000. 

"Fun fact: #bitcoin had 6 pullbacks bigger than our recent -28% in the record setting 1000%+ growth year of 2017," Whittemore commented, citing a chart with data from Travis Kling, CEO of crypto asset manager Ikigai.

BTC/USD corrections during 2016 and 2017. Source: Nathaniel Whittemore/ Twitter

As BTC/USD fell from fresh record highs of $42,000 to just above $30,000, familiar criticism of Bitcoin's volatility from mainstream financial sources and other critics returned. A subsequent rebound to $36,700, itself record-breaking in speed, in turn attracted claims of market manipulation.

Business as usual for hodlers

For long-term investors, however, the events are nothing new, echoing as they do the surface-level behavior seen during other bull runs. 

"During the previous cycles, the #Bitcoin drawdowns in the 20% to 40% range have taken anywhere from a day to a little over a month to find a bottom," on-chain analytics service Ecoinometrics summarized with comparative charts of its own on Monday.

"If you were waiting for the dip then it is the occasion to accumulate while you can."
Bitcoin price drawdown comparative data. Source: Ecoinometrics/ Twitter

Ecoinometrics nonetheless noted that historically, only around 15% of Bitcoin's total price corrections have surpassed the fall from $42,000.

Popular industry figures meanwhile reiterated that lower price levels amounted to little more than a buying opportunity for zealous investors.

"It's hard to believe Bitcoin is up 10% year to date for 2021 this morning at $32,000. But that's how this works. If you can't handle the crazy volatility, then manage that concern with your position size. I'm treating this morning's move as a big buying opportunity," Preston Pysh, co-founder of The Investor’s Podcast Network commented.

Trader cries foul play as $30K Bitcoin price dip ends in biggest-ever daily recovery

A surge in excess of 20% accompanies the 12 hours after Bitcoin bounced off $30,000, but questions over the events are mounting.

Bitcoin (BTC) saw its most successful recovery in history on Jan. 12 after testing $30,000 support, but market participants are already suspicious.

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView followed Bitcoin as it swiftly bounced off lows of $30,250 late on Monday to seal 20% gains in just over 12 hours.

Guggenheim sell advice under scrutiny

Coming even more quickly than its prior fall over the weekend, the comeback marks Bitcoin’s best daily performance ever, both in U.S. dollar and percentage terms. The numbers will be confirmed once the daily candle closes, with press-time levels nearing a local top of $36,600.

No sooner was the recovery underway, however, did concerns appear over the authenticity of recent market movements.

Popular market analyst and Cointelegraph contributor filbfilb argued that the strength of the rally belied what was tantamount to market manipulation — thanks specifically to exchange outages and unofficial advice from asset manager Guggenheim to sell at lower price levels.

“Amazing whats possible when you can bid the market,” part of a series of tweets read.

“Its hard not being a conspiracy theorist when two major exchanges become inoperable and Guggenheim tells people to sell the dip when they arent even filled yet.”
BTC/USD 12-hour candle chart (Bitstamp) with recovery data. Source: filbfilb/ TradingView

As Cointelegraph reported, Guggenheim’s CIO Scott Minerd advised investors that it was “time to take some money off the table.” The company is awaiting U.S. regulatory permission to enter Bitcoin through the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), and Minerd’s words swiftly garnered criticism over deliberately bidding down the price in the meantime.

Exchanges take the heat

For major exchanges Coinbase and Kraken, meanwhile, the publicity headache continued. As Bitcoin’s drop accelerated from $38,000 towards the lows, both trading platforms saw now characteristic outages, causing traders to lose control of orders. The knock-on effect, statistician Willy Woo subsequently warned, impacted the entire market and even made the price dip worse.

“Spot market sell off started around $38k, then Coinbase partially failed, not registering buys, causing its price to go $350 lower than others, this pulled down the index price that futures exchanges use to calculate leverage funding, wrecking bearish havoc on speculative markets,” he explained on Monday.

“Unlike previous crashes in the past 2 years, where over-leveraged markets lead by trader liquidation, this one started on spot markets, then was greatly amplified by a single exchange partially failing, yet did not turn itself off for the good of the ecosystem.”

Woo also queried why futures exchanges did not remove Coinbase from their listings in order to steady the fallout.

Customers appeared little concerned. As noted by software developer and commentator Vijay Boyapati, Coinbase volumes were over 101,200 BTC ($3.6 billion) in the 24 hours to early Tuesday, something which he estimates led to profits of up to $175 million.

“As much as I dislike Coinbase, their IPO is going to be a major catalyst for the entire market when it happens,” he said in accompanying comments.

“A lot of capital from the stock market is going to flow into the #Bitcoin market in this way.”

Buy the dip? Bitcoin price risks losing $30K as traders ‘manage risk’

Some well-earned miner profit-taking combines with a natural pause in the Bitcoin bull run to see the market revisit essential support levels.

Bitcoin (BTC) hodlers got a serious test of their resolve on Jan. 11 as the largest cryptocurrency approached $30,000.

Cryptocurrency market overview on Jan 11, 2021. Source: Coin360

BTC price hits $30,250

Data from Cointelegraph Markets, Coin360 and TradingView showed BTC/USD continuing its bearish streak after Wall Street opened on Monday, taking 24-hour losses to 23%.

The move extends a reset of the market that kicked in over the weekend after Bitcoin hit all-time highs of $42,000.

BTC/USD 1-day candle chart with 21-week moving average (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

A slow comedown accelerated through Sunday, with Monday continuing the selling pressure with little respite for traders attempting to “buy the dip.”

While traders were hardly panicked by what remains standard behavior for Bitcoin, prognoses began to favor a break from the kind of parabolic action of recent days and weeks.

For Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe, a useful reference for defining a mid-term floor lies in Bitcoin’s 21-week moving average (MA). Currently at $18,000, the indicator will be rising to match previous price growth while the price itself may continue to fall, with the two meeting in the middle of the resulting range to form a bottom.

“If you'd ask me a scenario for #Bitcoin, I think we'll see something like this in which the 21-Week MA comes in to play as support too,” he tweeted on Monday.

“Altcoins to do really well from the bottom.”

Spotlight on miner profit-taking

As Cointelegraph reported, the run above $40,000 may have incentivized miners to pause for profit-taking, with data showing that sales had reached their highest since July 2019. In addition, concerns revolved around the market being overleveraged after such rapid gains.

“Long positions had gotten very large, and so prudent risk management dictated that long holders, including miners, take a little off the table,” Chad Steinglass, head of trading at exchange CrossTower told Cointelegraph in private comments.

“The fact that this action occurred over the weekend, when traditional asset players were off from work, and when potential new inflows of cash from new investors were not yet hitting institutional players accounts, lead to order flow shifting to be unbalanced, this time sellers dominating.”

Steinglass added that the status quo may naturally shift in bulls’ favor as the trading week gets underway.

“It remains to be seen whether the start of the work week in the US and the opening of traditional banking hours will bring with it enough support from inflows to balance or overcome the sell interest or not,” he concluded.

Guy Hirsch, managing director for the U.S. at trading platform eToro, agreed.

"Bitcoin is trading down largely as a result of profit taking. Since we are still so far above the all-time high set before this recent bullish run up, it remains to be seen how much further we can fall," he told Cointelegraph.

"Though we don’t anticipate this, a fall below $20,000 could be a bad omen for the conviction institutions have behind their Bitcoin allocations, since they largely stepped in around the $20,000 price level."
ETH/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

In line with van de Poppe’s comments, altcoins were wary at publication time, with many of the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization seeing 20% losses on the day. Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin, quickly lost the $1,000 support to trade at $950.

Renewed strength in the U.S. dollar, meanwhile, could also keep Bitcoin in check, van de Poppe added in analysis on Monday.

Bitcoin whales are profiting as ‘weak hands’ sell BTC throughout $40K bull run

High or low, Bitcoin is still being shaken out of small investors and flowing to "millionaire" wallets, data confirms this week.

Bitcoin (BTC) is changing hands fast after its drop to $32,000 and only millionaires are winning, data shows.

Statistics governing wallet balances from Glassnode on Jan. 11 reveal that the main investors “buying the dip” are those with a balance in excess of 1,000 BTC ($36 million).

"Millionaire" wallets keep growing

Compiled by Elias Simos, protocol specialist at blockchain infrastructure provider Bison Trails, the numbers suggest that the wealthy have been profiting from Bitcoin being sold by smaller investors throughout December and January.

“Addresses with more than 1k $BTC continue growing at the expense of all others–even as this most recent downturn is taking effect,” Simos summarized.

“While you were selling, whales were gobbling up your Bitcoin…”

While the number of wallets with smaller balances decreased as BTC/USD climbed from $19,000 on Dec. 1 to recent highs of $42,000, the 1,000 BTC+ group became an outlier, growing in presence.

The net effect is thus weak hands selling to strong — and the richer the entity, the stronger the hands.

“Don't be part of the #BTC transfer to billionaires, corporations and hedge funds .... at least not yet,” entrepreneur Alistair Milne warned Twitter followers while responding to Simos’ findings.

Bitcoin entities with a balance of more than 1,000 BTC chart. Source: Glassnode

Guggenheim hints it will sell BT

While institutional buy-ins have become the standard narrative of Bitcoin over the past few months, a rogue “weak hands” signal from one of them caught analysts’ attention this week.

As Cointelegraph reported, Guggenheim Partners, which announced a sizable fund allocation to BTC in late November, is allegedly planning to sell some of its holdings already. The trigger came from CIO Scott Minerd, who on Monday said that Bitcoin’s weekend drop provides the impetus to rethink its position.

“Bitcoin's parabolic rise is unsustainable in the near term. Vulnerable to a setback,” he wrote.

“The target technical upside of $35,000 has been exceeded. Time to take some money off the table.”

His suggestion appeared to confuse market participants, with responses querying the rationale behind the decision, coming just weeks after Guggenheim’s initial entry.

“CIO of huge firm day trading btc? It's a 5-10yr hold minimum,” macro investor Dan Tapeiro argued.

Institutional uptake comes amid a more fundamental supply and demand squeeze for Bitcoin, with large buyers already outpacing what miners can produce each month. At the same time, miners have stepped up their sales in recent days, in what one theory suggests is some well-earned profit-taking at or near all-time highs.

BTC price eyes 30% correction: 5 things to watch in Bitcoin this week

A strengthening dollar combines with profit-taking by miners to create a "short-term bearish" environment for Bitcoin.

Bitcoin (BTC) heads into a new week after another weekend of major volatility — but this time, the way was down, not up. 

As the market loses $7,000 — the most since the “vertical” price rises began — Cointelegraph presents five things which could keep it moving in the coming days.

BTC dip makes Guggenheim want to sell

Top on the list of topics among Bitcoiners will be the cryptocurrency’s sudden fall over Saturday and Sunday.

From highs of near $42,000, BTC/USD faced a sell-off out of hours, with bears driving down the pair to current local lows of $32,300.

The drop is the most this year and since the Coronavirus caused a cross-asset crash in March 2020, but was widely predicted by analysts, who argued that Bitcoin had become overextended.

“#Bitcoin crashes >10%: The worst Bitcoin plunge since March is reminiscent of the last halving cycle in 2016/2017. The rally was followed by a slump of more than 50% in 2017,” financial commentator Holger Zschaepitz summarized in cautious words on Twitter.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

In fact, a 23% drop is nothing new for long-term Bitcoin hodlers, and the lack of more significant losses suggests that even above $30,000, buyer support remains strong.

“These and upcoming dips are the opportunities you where looking for during the #FOMO feelings you had at $40,000. Use them,” Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe meanwhile continued.

At press time, Bitcoin was already rebounding, with $35,000 swiftly following the lows. This was not enough for institutional Bitcoin buyer Guggenheim, however, with CIO Scott Minerd suddenly signalling that the fund would sell some of its BTC position.

“Bitcoin's parabolic rise is unsustainable in the near term. Vulnerable to a setback,” he claimed on Monday.

“The target technical upside of $35,000 has been exceeded. Time to take some money off the table.”

Others noted the potential bargain for large-volume buyers.

“Institutions are really shaking out all the weak hands to acquire more #Bitcoin,” David Gokhshtein, founder of Gokhshtein Media, summarized about the current status quo.

Biden talks $3 trillion money printing

In the United States, a potential bull sign for Bitcoin in the form of a massive $3 trillion stimulus program from the incoming Biden administration is being masked by a recent rebound in the strength of the dollar.

A classic inverse correlation for Bitcoin, the U.S. dollar currency index (DXY) continued its gains over recent days, heading back above the 90 mark after hitting its lowest levels since March 2018.

Last year often saw dollar weakening give Bitcoin a boost, at a time when other price relationships were steadily breaking down.

“The dollar is so extremely oversold, over-hated, and over-shorted that it all but has to rally for a while at some point soon,” Matt Maley, chief market strategist at Miller Tabak + Co., told Bloomberg.

“The dollar is getting very ripe for a tradable bounce — one that will last at least several weeks and maybe even a couple of months.”
U.S. dollar currency index 1-day candle chart. Source: TradingView

Looking to the long term, however, and it was clear for many this week that the U.S. was simply kicking its real economic hardship further down the road. Incoming president Joe Biden intends to give Americans stimulus checks worth $2,000 as part of a giant money printing exercise, which could be worth $3 trillion.

Should it pass, liquidity from the central bank will expand the most in a single instant since the Coronavirus pandemic began, and will take U.S. federal debt above $30 trillion for the first time in history.

“Time for Plan B,” Danny Scott, CEO of U.K. exchange CoinCorner, responded to the plans.

Stocks grind upwards

Equities traders are beginning to raise their hopes of incoming profits this week, thanks to the shock of recent events in the United States adding to markets’ existing gains.

On Monday, it was India’s turn in the spotlight, with stocks racing towards new all-time highs. As Cointelegraph reported, other markets are already at or near records of their own. Elsewhere in Asia and beyond, Hong Kong and South Korea made gains while Australia saw losses.

With U.S. futures down prior to Wall Street opening, a broadly mixed picture greeted market participants, with gold also struggling but oil advancing.

The extent of Bitcoin’s reliance on stock market movements is again in doubt as the weekend’s volatility looks nothing like the current macro environment. Since outperforming every major equity play except Tesla as markets rebounded from their crash last March, Bitcoin has increasingly forged its own path, unhindered by macro.

“I am expecting Bitcoin and tech stocks to double again in the next 6-9 months,” Immad Akhund, CEO of startup-focused bank Mercury, predicted over the weekend.

“It’s clear we are in an asset bubble fueled by fiscal stimulus, low interest rates and ironically higher disposable income in pandemic. Probably won’t end well but enjoy the ride on the way up!”

Akhund, like various others, added that his timeline coincided with the rollout of mass vaccination against Coronavirus, news of which has further fuelled stocks all-round rise in recent weeks.

Miners take serious profits

One explanation for the Bitcoin price drop lies firmly within the Bitcoin network itself. A classic setup, miners appear to be selling holdings at significant rates once again.

According to data from on-chain monitoring resource CryptoQuant, those sales have now reached their highest since July 2019, even surpassing those which followed the latest block subsidy halving in May last year.

CryptoQuant used its Miner Position Index (MPI) to determine miners’ decreasing stocks of BTC, with CEO Ki Young Ju describing the current situation as a “short-term bearish market.”

“Since December last year, they had been selling $BTC, but the correction was tiny due to institutional buying power,” he added in comments.

Bitcoin MPI 30-day moving average chart. Source: Ki Young Ju/ Twitter

Cointelegraph in-house analyst Joseph Young had further thoughts. For him, Bitcoin at its all-time highs of $42,000 came at the end of a period during which the market had just overexerted itself. A period of taking stock — perhaps literally — was more than necessary.

“$2.7 billion was liquidated today,” he noted on Monday.

“Simple answer is the market was overleveraged, got greedy, continue to buy first dips below $39k.”

No "altseason 2.0" just yet

Bitcoin’s lower levels may end up being a gift to altcoin hodlers, who have eagerly awaited a lessening of the bull run’s intensity to allow other tokens breathing space.

As Cointelegraph’s Van de Poppe often notes, altcoins do not do well during parabolic episodes in Bitcoin, with their main performance occurring after Bitcoin has cooled down.

“The #altcoin market capitalization still looks great,” he commented on Monday.

“The first level of the impulse wave was hit at $320 billion. As long as it remains above $225 billion, then the next run will bring the #altcoin capitalization towards new all-time highs.”

On Monday, however, it was clear that that pattern had yet to play out, with altcoins following Bitcoin downwards and even outpacing its losses.

Out of the top ten cryptocurrencies by market cap, many lost between 17% and 20% on the day, market leader Ether (ETH) nearing $1,000 support. Despite the drawdowns, many still retained solid gains on longer timeframes. In the case of the top ten, it was Cardano (ADA) in the lead overall, still up 27% versus a week ago.

Bitcoin price quickly rebounds to reach $41,000 as market cap passes Tencent

Bitcoin even goes beyond Tesla's market cap for a short time as bulls suggest the upwards momentum is not done even at $40,000.

Bitcoin (BTC) returned to $40,000 on Jan. 8 as another price consolidation period ended characteristically briefly.

Cryptocurrency market overview. Source: Coin360

Data from Cointelegraph Markets, Coin360 and TradingView showed BTC/USD quickly rise to recapture the psycholigically significant price level during trading on Friday.

After a 9% fall following runs to all-time highs the day before, Bitcoin managed to stay lower only for a matter of hours before bullish momentum returned. Thereafter, the largest cryptocurrency not only matched its all-time highs, but delivered a new one — $40,087.

BTC/USD 1-minute candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

"Seems we only dump to shake out the weak hands these days," a popular social media trader summarized on the day.

Big player market caps topple to BTC

Bitcoin also beat the market cap of Chinese giant Tencent and briefly passed "darling" tech firm Tesla as it rose to $41,000 per coin.

Data from CoinMarketCap and Companies Market Cap confirmed that on Jan. 7 Bitcoin almost entered the top five companies by market cap. 

Top companies by market cap as of Jan. 8, 2021. Source: Companies Market Cap.

As BTC/USD crossed the $40,000 mark, Bitcoin's market cap grew to unprecedented levels, topping out at $745 billion. A day later, following a correction, the figure retreated to $737 billion before regaining its earlier record.

At the same time, Tesla delivered a swift 7.3% daily gain, allowing it to outpace Bitcoin once again after losing its market cap prowess to the cryptocurrency for a short period. On Friday, the company was on $773 billion as Bitcoin once again sailed through $40,000.

Tencent stock (orange) vs. BTC/USD chart. Source: TradingView

A more decisive victory came over Chinese tech giant Tencent, however, which at $716 billion firmly bowed to Bitcoin's momentum. Previously, Tencent was also worth more than Tesla.

As Cointelegraph reported, Tesla had likewise outperformed against stocks and cryptocurrency in 2020, beating even Bitcoin's performance versus its March lows. A look at Tencent stock growth meanwhile underscores the slow pace of gains which characterized other stocks compared to cryptocurrency.

"There are still companies in the world that are worth more than #Bitcoin. Crazy," Tyler Winklevoss, co-founder of Gemini exchange, commented on the phenomenon.

Bitcoin buying algos ‘seldom care about price’ in 2021, says analyst

A blow-off top may yet appear but market composition has changed and 20% dips are being bought with "aggression," says filbfilb.

Bitcoin (BTC) is not far from a blow-off top price implosion but investors are "aggressively" buying the dip.

Speaking to Cointelegraph on Jan. 8, popular analyst filbfilb revealed that Bitcoin was due a corrective phase given the pace of recent gains.

filbfilb: I don't think we're far from blow-off top

On Thursday, BTC/USD exceeded $40,000 before a spectacular reversal saw a $2,200 drawdown in under give minutes. Thereafter, fresh attempts to flip $40,000 to support were met with rejection, and press-time levels circled $38,400.

BTC/USD 1-day candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

With market participants keen to know what will come next, filbfilb told Cointelegraph that a new style of buying was fuelling repeated all-time highs. As with any market, however, vertical gains could not last forever.

"Bitcoin has continued to make increasingly smaller consolidations after failed sell off attempts. This points to a climatic conclusion at an increased probability in terms of time. I don't think we are far form a blow off top, but how high that could go is anyone's guess," he said.

"In terms of a correction, all we know today is that 20% corrections are bought with aggression. Until that changes then i hate to use a cliche but the trend is your friend."

This automated trading style itself points to a new class of investor needing to enter the market with larger amounts, rather than the casual manual exposure which characterized the 2017 rush to $20,000.

"It was more that there are still obvious signs of accumulation algorithms and that accumulation algorithms seldom care about the price when their goal is to invest X$ in Y time period," filbfilb added.

Upside in "uncharted territory"

At $40,000, meanwhile, a single bitcoin passed the value of the United States median annual salary for the first time.

U.S. median salary historical chart. Source: Federal Reserve/ Twitter

The largest cryptocurrency's 2021 gains alone were in excess of 42% at Thursday's peak of $40,400, with the pullback that followed amounting to around 9% losses. While analysts retained the possibility of further corrections, the mood on Friday was firmly bullish.

"The entire bull cycle we're experiencing now will be way larger than anyone is expecting it to end too," Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe told Twitter followers.

"Just like the $20,000 peak high was way higher than everyone expected in 2016/2017 to be the top on Bitcoin. That's how markets work."

Statistician Willy Woo also noted the lack of references left on the Bitcoin spot chart to calculate resistance, given the latest all-time highs. Only Fibonacci sequences remained.

"When there's no historic resistance levels, magic numbers in nature is all we have for support and resistance bands. Bitcoin is in unrestrained price discovery in uncharted territory, literally," he wrote.

Bitcoin price hits $40,000 less than three weeks after shattering $20K

Another major milestone is toppled as Bitcoin price surpasses $40,000 in just the first week of 2021.

Bitcoin (BTC) hit $40,000 on Jan. 7 in the latest psychologically significant milestone for cryptocurrency bulls.

BTC price crushes the $30,000 corridor in record time

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView confirmed BTC/USD officially hitting dizzying new highs during trading on Thursday, bringing weekly gains to more than 40%.

BTC/USD 1-minute candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

In just one of various achievements for Bitcoin this year, the largest cryptocurrency conquered bearish prognoses of a retraction after rising rapidly throughout the past 24 hours.

As Cointelegraph reported, Bitcoin’s NVT ratio led signals suggesting that the bull run was far from over, and likely only beginning.

According to Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe:

"Markets are doing great and the bull cycle is starting up nicely here. That means that the market will probably continue running heavily this coming year. With the standard 20-30% corrections, be prepared, they occur and they are opportunities."

"Less than a month after Bitcoin broke through $20k its price has doubled to $40k.  It's now hard for anyone to deny we are seeing the maturation of a whole new asset class, This could be the 'broadband moment' for cryptocurrency - where every company and individual needs to think seriously about how they engage and interact with cryptocurrency," added Sui Chung, CEO of CF Benchmarks, which is the FCA-regulated indices provider used by CME.

Barry Silbert, who until today was CEO of asset manager Grayscale, summarized:

"Funny to think that a bitcoin price retrace to $20,000 would feel like the buying opportunity of a lifetime."

News of Bitcoin's successes meanwhile radiated beyond cryptocurrency circles, making it onto the radar of finance figures including Holger Zschaepitz, a popular financial commentator and regular contributor to German news publication Die Welt.

Mati Greenspan of Quantum Economics suggested that:

"Charts only tell the past and we're in brand new territory. This bull run began at $10k and 10x the previous all-time high seems about the norm for a bitcoin bull cycle. So since we're approaching the halfway mark with extreme momentum, outstanding volumes and exceptional fundamentals, I see this as a stop on the road to a Bitcoin price that could possibly be around $100k."

On the other hand, David Lifchitz, CIO of asset management firm ExoAlpha, added a note of caution. Bitcoin, he argued, was rising too quickly, invoking memories of the dot-com boom.

"What is concerning is not the fact that BTC is going higher, it's its velocity (the speed at which it goes...) that is worrisome... definitely in bubble territory, but history has shown that 'markets can remain irrational longer than you can stay solvent," he told Cointelegraph in private comments.

"In late 1999, everybody was convinced that we were at the top but the tech stock bubble lasted another 3 months and went higher and higher until it eventually popped big time."

Altcoins beat Bitcoin gains in 2021

Year-to-date, BTC/USD has delivered returns beaten only by certain altcoins. Currently, Ether (ETH) is up 62% for the year and Stellar (XLM) has rallied 150%. As a result, Bitcoin's dominance index has slid below 70%.

Bitcoin, Ether gains in 2021. Source: Digital Assets Data

In Ether’s case, all-time highs remain right around the corner and some analysts estimate that the top altcoin could rally as high as $2,600 in the short term.

XRP price soars 55% to ‘crucial’ level as Bitcoin notches new high at $38.5K

A sudden reversal of fortunes takes XRP 55% higher in 24 hours despite legal problems at Ripple persisting.

Bitcoin (BTC) continued its habit of hitting all-time highs almost every day on Jan. 7 as bulls took the largest cryptocurrency above $38,000.

Cryptocurrency market overview. Source: Coin360

BTC price passes $38,500

Data from Cointelegraph Markets, Coin360 and TradingView followed BTC/USD as it took out another hurdle on the way to the psychologically significant $40,000 milestone.

On Thursday, gains had accelerated, with Bitcoin investors seeing 24-hour returns of 11.5%. Just a week ago at the start of the year, Bitcoin traded at $28,000.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

As Cointelegraph reported, the largest cryptocurrency, together with Ether (ETH) and a handful of other altcoins, has become the best investment play of 2021, leaving even Tesla stock far behind.

$TSLA was the winning punt of 2020 since the coronavirus crash in March, with Bitcoin also being beaten by Ether.

“The next correction is absolutely going to be painful for all the #FOMO buyers,” Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe warned Twitter followers as Bitcoin reached another new record high of $38,510.

XRP abruptly comes back from the dead

In altcoins, meanwhile, a curious renaissance was occurring for embattled number four cryptocurrency XRP.

Having previously lost a substantial amount of its value due to legal issues at major stakeholder Ripple, XRP saw a sudden rebirth this week, rising from $0.23 to $0.35 in a single day.

XRP/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

For Van de Poppe, $0.35 now represented the make-or-break level for bulls to hold in order to continue their gains, which come despite no real movement in the legal proceedings.

“XRP needs to crack this significant resistance zone to be able to continue the upward push. If that doesn't occur, more consolidation is required,” he commented.

Bitcoin NVT ratio suggests BTC may see another ‘explosive move’ as search interest spikes

The popular metric suggests the Bitcoin bull run is beginning, not ending, according to a report from Stack Funds.

Bitcoin (BTC) may have hit new all-time highs of $37,600, but one indicator suggests that yet another bull run is incoming.

Released in the latest weekly report from Stack Funds, data from Bitcoin's network value to transaction (NVT) ratio still remains firmly bullish.

Report: NVT suggests Bitcoin "not overvalued"

According to analysts at Stack, despite Bitcoin gaining 30% in 2021 already, the gains are far from over. Far from warning that the top is imminent or already here, NVT is reminiscent of the start of a bull run, not the end.

"Currently, NVT is trading at the 70 handle, and lies roughly in the middle of the range. This suggests that Bitcoin not in the overvalued territory despite the recent price rally the past few weeks," the report summarizes.

"If anything, a potential spike in the NVT ratio could mean that Bitcoin is ready for yet another explosive move upwards."

An accompanying chart highlights a divergence in NVT versus price similar to those which preceded gains in 2017 and 2019. 

Bitcoin NVT ratio vs. BTC/USD chart. Source: Stack Funds/ CoinMetrics

Stack further noted the curious contrast between raging crypto and unimpressive stock markets, which despite lingering at or near all-time highs have failed to produce decisive moves so far this year. 

Mainstream consumers wake up to Bitcoin

As Bitcoin and altcoins gain, however, public consciousness is responding in kind. A glance at Google Trends data shows that interest in the term "Bitcoin" worldwide is now at its highest since February 2018.

Worldwide Google searches for "Bitcoin." Source: Google Trends

With the trend forecast to hit nearly 70% of the 2017 peak this week, the added interest could in itself perpetuate the bull market thanks to curiosity turning into buy-ins via mainstream on-ramps such as Square's Cash App and Coinbase.

Away from retail, meanwhile, statistician Willy Woo noted that high net worth individuals are "likely" fuelling much of the demand thanks to Bitcoin getting the seal of approval from institutions.

Bitcoin entities with a balance above 1,000 BTC vs. BTC/USD. Source: Glassnode/ Twitter

"It's whale spawning season," he tweeted on Thursday.

"While the narrative is institutional money, this phase, IMO, it's really institutions have given Bitcoin validation, and now we have family offices serving the wealthy rushing in needing exposure. There's a lot of requests for $1m+ buys happening."

A further tweet explained the impetus behind the sudden price gains, amounting to a price war for the dwindling BTC supply.

"When you have many buyers competing against each other for the coins, you don't just sit around and wait and let the market come to your low bids. Price premium runs up," Woo wrote.

Bitcoin price now within 10% of $40,000 after ranging flips to new highs

A "healthy correction" is increasingly likely, says analyst Michaël van de Poppe as sellers dig in below the $40,000 mark.

Bitcoin (BTC) climbed to fresh all-time highs on Jan. 7, coming within striking distance of $40,000.

Cryptocurrency market overview. Source: Coin360

BTC price reaches $37,800

Data from Cointelegraph Markets, Coin360 and TradingView showed Bitcoin getting yet another boost overnight on Wednesday as protestors stormed the Capitol in Washington D.C.

After showing signs of continuing strength during trading the day before, BTC/USD abruptly headed north, reaching a new peak of $37,800.

By press time on Thursday, a subsequent retracement had sent the pair focus on the $37,000 mark, with Bitcoin still within 10% of hitting $40,000.

BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

According to the latest updates for order books, significant resistance lay in wait at $38,000, with more selling pressure beginning at $39,500. Support was less decisive above $31,000.

BTC/USDT order heatmap (Binance). Source: Material Indicators

“It’s amazing, an amazing year,” Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe summarized in his latest YouTube update.

He added that while the current price action was something to be celebrated, a “healthy correction” was now getting more likely.

“Would that be bad? No, as the higher Bitcoin goes, the more money is into the markets and the more money can flow towards the altcoins from this perspective,” he continued.

Altcoins still steal the show

As Cointelegraph reported, the end of December was characterized by more funds entering long-term storage, with the remaining available supply subject to what Van de Poppe and others term “FOMOing in” from less experienced buyers.

These felt that they should seize the opportunity and buy Bitcoin at higher levels, having had no interest in doing so while Bitcoin traded at $10,000, he noted.

Across major altcoins, Ether (ETH) was up 2.3% on the day, hitting $1,180, while embattled XRP put in a surprise move to add 27%.

Stellar (XLM) meanwhile continued its march upwards, hitting $0.34 on the back of weekly returns that topped 170%.

Bitcoin’s market cap dominance stood at 68.5% on Thursday, down from 69.7% at the start of the week.

Data says only 22% of Bitcoin supply left in circulation as BTC rally ‘far from done’

Roughly three-quarters of the 18.6 million BTC mined to date is not up for sale or even moving anywhere, Glassnode calculates.

Bitcoin (BTC) investors are quickly storing most of the available coins away and they are not for sale, new data at the start of 2021 reveals.

Statistics from on-chain analytics resource Glassnode originally released on Dec. 29, 2020 confirm that almost 80% of the Bitcoin supply is illiquid.

78% of BTC supply illiquid

The changes in the composition of the Bitcoin market have become well known. As new all-time highs above $35,000 emerge, so too has a narrative that weak hands are selling their holdings to strong hands and institutions are buying from whales.

This reshaping of the Bitcoin investor profile implies more long-term hodling and less speculative activity, which itself boosts Bitcoin’s image as a worthwhile investment and perpetuates the cycle of hodling and price increases resulting from a liquidity squeeze.

For Glassnode, this process has now been quantified. Number-crunching from Rafael Schultze-Kraft, the firm’s CTO, estimates that of the extant Bitcoin supply of 18.6 million BTC, 78% is unavailable.

“Only 4.2 million BTC (22%) are currently in constant circulation and available for buying and selling,” he concluded.

“It's worth looking at how this trend has evolved in the past. Looking at the change of supply in each categoy from the beginning of the year, we can see a clear upwards trend of Bitcoin illiquidity. This is indicates that the present bull market is driven by the staggering amount of illiquidity.”
Bitcoin liquid supply change chart. Source: Willy Woo/ Glassnode

Willy Woo on liquidity trend: “It’s bullish”

Glassnode is not the first to voice the belief that investors are fighting over Bitcoin’s fixed supply. Other commentators have previously concluded that a Bitcoin arms race is providing the fuel for one all-time high after another.

“Latest buying has been driven by participants who are long term holders. This is bullish, this rally is far from done,” one of them, statistician Willy Woo, commented on Glassnode’s findings.

“This is the change in #Bitcoin's supply moving between participants. When more coins move from liquid (active traders) to the illiquid (HODLers), it's bullish.”

The economics of Bitcoin’s fixed supply and decreasing emission is extensively covered in “The Bitcoin Standard,” the popular book by Saifedean Ammous. Crucially, as miners receive less and less “new” Bitcoin per block after each block subsidy halving event, Bitcoin’s inflation rate drops — it is currently at 1.8%.

Any proposal to change the dynamics of this status quo and thus increase inflation would need full network consensus, and as this would ultimately make every participant poorer, no one has an incentive to agree.

Since the Glassnode data was published, meanwhile, BTC/USD has already gained 35%.

One Bitcoin at $34K now buys one Tesla after Elon Musk has a Dogecoin Christmas

A healthy price boost to both BTC and DOGE comes as hodlers can now afford a whole Tesla Model 3 with a single Bitcoin.

Bitcoin (BTC) hodlers can now all own a Tesla electric car — as long as they have at least 1 BTC in their wallet.

As BTC/USD crossed $34,000 at the weekend and went on to hit $35,600 on Jan. 6, the brainchild of Elon Musk became more affordable than ever.

2021 exchange rate: 1 BTC = 1 Tesla

As per pricing on Tesla's official website, the company's entry-level offering, the Model 3, retails at $33,960 in the United States if no environmental fuel rewards are applied.

Musk, who has long taunted Bitcoiners with tweets and comments which leave it unclear whether he supports it, continues to face pressure to accept the cryptocurrency for Tesla purchases.

"A #bitcoin now buys you a Tesla. So, when will you accept it, @elonmusk ?" popular Twitter account Documenting Bitcoin wrote at the weekend.

Samson Mow, CEO of Blockstream, also noted the brand new price parity as Bitcoin hit new all-time highs.

"Would be a shame to buy model 3 now, when you can buy a roadster for 1BTC later this year," added Juri Bulovic, director of Bitcoin mining at Fidelity.  

BTC/USD vs. $TSLA (orange) yearly gains chart. Source: TradingView

Musk gives the DOGE a bone

As Cointelegraph reported, Tesla stock has become a thorn in the side of the most committed Bitcoin proponents as the only stock to outpace its gains in 2020. From just under $90 on Jan. 1 last year, by the end of last week, $TSLA traded at $729, marking annual returns in excess of 700%.

At press time on Wednesday, Tesla was higher still, closing out the previous day's trading at $735 while so far failing to match Bitcoin's 2021 performance.

Musk himself meanwhile shows little sign of engaging with the idea, instead focusing his Twitter energies on Dogecoin (DOGE). After some characteristic tongue-in-cheek publicity for the meme-based altcoin, DOGE/USD shot up by over 125% in a week.

A Shiba Inu theme even graced Musk's 2020 Christmas greeting to Twitter followers, while an additional helping hand from adult actress Angela White only added to the uptick in Dogecoin's fortunes.

Got coronavirus stimulus? Buying Bitcoin has already offered 12% returns

The $600 stimulus check invested in BTC last week would have made you $75 better off already, data shows.

Americans who received their second coronavirus stimulus checks on Dec. 29 have already gained 12% — if they invested it in Bitcoin (BTC).

As the United States government rolls out another round of “free” money to eligible residents, attention is fixed on how many will choose to invest their $600 in cryptocurrencies.

April stimulus recipients now have $5,600

The handouts began last week and are expected to be completed by Jan. 15. According to a dedicated monitoring resource, those who received the money on the first day and who immediately swapped their U.S. dollars for BTC are already up around $75.

Bitcoin, Ether performance in 2021. Source: Digital Assets Data

Bitcoin and Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin by market capitalization, have outstripped practically all competition in the first week of 2021 when it comes to returns on investment.

As mainstream media overflows with tales of how stimulus recipients plan to invest in stocks and consumer goods, notionally with the goal of “stimulating the economy,” those who bought Bitcoin with the previous cash gift in April 2020 are now sitting on $5,600.

At the time, the stimulus check was worth $1,200 — twice the amount of the second round — meaning Bitcoin has supplied gains of 370% if you "hodled" until now. 

The figures underscore the curious way in which the average taxpayer can benefit from the bizarre financial environment that characterizes 2020 and 2021. By simply buying and holding Bitcoin, anyone can outpace even the most seasoned equities trader.

“Maybe we should be sending out the stimulus money in Bitcoin. The $600 will turn to $2,000 in a week anyways,” fund manager Austin Rief summarized in a tongue-in-cheek tweet over the weekend.

Monthly chart shows Bitcoin is not done at $32,000

While 233% gains in a week have yet to come true, many are already confident of Bitcoin’s prospects to match or even beat last year’s performance in 2021.

The year after a block subsidy halving has historically been the cryptocurrency’s best, and under that logic, a correction will only be due in 2022.

Difference between BTC/USD price highs across halving cycles. Source: Twitter

Added to this is data showing longer-term behavior following a price top in each four-year halving cycle. With $20,000 as the previous top, history suggests that BTC/USD will not dip below that level again.

What’s more, between 2017 and 2020, the difference between Bitcoin’s two tops was 1,600%. Between the 2013 and 2017 tops, it gained 3,500%. Since May 2020, Bitcoin is up by a comparatively modest 75%.

XLM price gains 30% in a day as positive sentiment shifts from XRP to Stellar

XLM benefits from a Ukraine government partnership and becomes the latest addition to 2021's new altseason.

Stellar (XLM) is winning the battle of the blockchain payment networks against Ripple this week as sentiment flips in its favor.

Data from monitoring resource The TIE confirms that long-term sentiment towards XLM is now higher than towards XRP, the altcoin in which embattled Ripple is the largest stakeholder.

XLM sentiment beats out XRP

The figures serve as the latest warning to XRP investors, who have looked on in dismay as legal problems for Ripple in the United States cause its value to dive by over 60%.

XLM/XRP line chart. Source: CoinGecko

As of Jan. 5, the long-term sentiment score collated by TheTIE stood at 70 for XLM but under 70 for XRP. Before the legal action, XRP sentiment was at an all-time high.

XLM vs. XRP daily and long-term sentiment score chart. Source: The TIE

Ukraine deal sees XLM join 2021 altseason

Stellar has received a boost this week in the form of a high-profile partnership with the government of Ukraine, under which it will help lawmakers digitize the national fiat currency, the hryvnia. 

XLM/USD subsequently began rising, adding 30% to hit $0.176 on Tuesday — approaching its highest since November 2018. Transaction numbers last week hit new record highs.

XLM/USD 1-day candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

While it remains unclear as to what extent XLM the token will feature in the Ukraine solutions, Stellar executives have confirmed that the payment system will form a major part of the deal.

"We look forward to working with the Ministry and other stakeholders to digitize the hryvnia, to bring Stellar-based tools and services to the people and businesses of Ukraine, and to introduce new partnership opportunities in Ukraine to businesses in the Stellar ecosystem," Denelle Dixon, CEO and Executive Director of the Stellar Development Foundation, commented in an accompanying press release.

XLM's gains compound a burgeoning altcoin resurgence which has fast become a calling card for 2021. 

As Cointelegraph reported, various large-cap altcoins have seen weekly gains top 40%, with some seeing price levels return after a three-year hiatus.

The moves come in tandem with a slowdown for Bitcoin (BTC), which came off its own all-time highs of $34,800 to briefly dive to $27,700 on Monday. A consolidation period is key to allow altcoins to flourish, Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe has explained.

The biggest winner of Bitcoin’s rally? Dogecoin. DOGE price soars 105% in one week

Dogecoin gets some unlikely public petting from Australian adult star Angela White for its latest high-profile endorsement.

Meme-based altcoin Dogecoin (DOGE) leads altcoin gains this week, pushing above 1 cent per token after a surprise endorsement from Australian adult film star Angela White.

In an unlikely turn of events, White tweeted about her DOGE holdings and then changed her Twitter profile picture to herself in Dogecoin merchandise.

Angela White claims 7-year DOGE hodl

The net result was an instant 125% price increase in DOGE/USD, which beat the impact from a previous Twitter nod from Tesla CEO, Elon Musk.

“Been HODLing my $Doge since 2014. MUCH PATIENCE. TO THE MOON #dogecoin,” White wrote on Jan. 2.

The impetus for the sudden reveal is unclear, and whether or not White has in fact been keeping a stash of Dogecoin under the mattress for seven years could not be immediately verified.

Number of Twitter users Dogecoin (blue), Bitcoin (red). Source: TheTie

At press time, however, DOGE was still reveling in the publicity, still up by over 100% in the past seven days despite downwards volatility for Bitcoin (BTC) this week. Social media activity has surged with the number of Twitter users spiking to record numbers for both cryptocurrencies in January, according to data from TheTie

DOGE/USD also managed to crack the psychologically significant 1 cent mark, taking it to levels not seen since January 2018. Despite its successes, the shiba inu still remains relatively far off its all-time highs of $0.0153 from that month.

DOGE/USD 1-day candle chart (Bittrex). Source: TradingView

It is not the only altcoin to benefit from the adult entertainment industry recently. Late last year, disruption at Pornhub saw Verge (XVG) reap the rewards as the website was left with cryptocurrency as its only payment option.

Altseason in all but name

Dogecoin nonetheless sets the scene for an altcoin rebirth that is increasingly taking hold of cryptocurrency markets.

As Bitcoin’s record-breaking rally cools, alternative cryptocurrencies are seeing their fortunes reverse after several years of blanket losses.

Top altcoin performers for the past 7 days. Source: CoinMarketCap

Among them is market leader Ether (ETH), which returned above $1,000 overnight on Monday to practically match Dogecoin’s performance, only at price levels several orders of magnitude higher.

Others have also fared well, with Uniswap (UNI) up by over 50% in the past week and Polkadot (DOT) continuing its meteoric rise into the new year.

As Cointelegraph reported, analysts feel the time is now right for altcoins to have their next moment in the spotlight, with the potential upside able to eclipse even Bitcoin’s gains since the summer.

“They said that altcoins will not do well anymore. No more altseasons. Bitcoin dominance towards 80%+,” Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe summarized to Twitter followers on Monday.

“But then they didn't meet 2021 yet.”

The biggest winner of Bitcoin’s rally? Dogecoin. DOGE price soars 105% in one week

Dogecoin gets some unlikely public petting from Australian adult star Angela White for its latest high-profile endorsement.

Meme-based altcoin Dogecoin (DOGE) leads altcoin gains this week, pushing above 1 cent per token after a surprise endorsement from Australian adult film star Angela White.

In an unlikely turn of events, White tweeted about her DOGE holdings and then changed her Twitter profile picture to herself in Dogecoin merchandise.

Angela White claims 7-year DOGE hodl

The net result was an instant 125% price increase in DOGE/USD, which beat the impact from a previous Twitter nod from Tesla CEO, Elon Musk.

“Been HODLing my $Doge since 2014. MUCH PATIENCE. TO THE MOON #dogecoin,” White wrote on Jan. 2.

The impetus for the sudden reveal is unclear, and whether or not White has in fact been keeping a stash of Dogecoin under the mattress for seven years could not be immediately verified.

Number of Twitter users Dogecoin (blue), Bitcoin (red). Source: TheTie

At press time, however, DOGE was still reveling in the publicity, still up by over 100% in the past seven days despite downwards volatility for Bitcoin (BTC) this week. Social media activity has surged with the number of Twitter users spiking to record numbers for both cryptocurrencies in January, according to data from TheTie

DOGE/USD also managed to crack the psychologically significant 1 cent mark, taking it to levels not seen since January 2018. Despite its successes, the shiba inu still remains relatively far off its all-time highs of $0.0153 from that month.

DOGE/USD 1-day candle chart (Bittrex). Source: TradingView

It is not the only altcoin to benefit from the adult entertainment industry recently. Late last year, disruption at Pornhub saw Verge (XVG) reap the rewards as the website was left with cryptocurrency as its only payment option.

Altseason in all but name

Dogecoin nonetheless sets the scene for an altcoin rebirth that is increasingly taking hold of cryptocurrency markets.

As Bitcoin’s record-breaking rally cools, alternative cryptocurrencies are seeing their fortunes reverse after several years of blanket losses.

Top altcoin performers for the past 7 days. Source: CoinMarketCap

Among them is market leader Ether (ETH), which returned above $1,000 overnight on Monday to practically match Dogecoin’s performance, only at price levels several orders of magnitude higher.

Others have also fared well, with Uniswap (UNI) up by over 50% in the past week and Polkadot (DOT) continuing its meteoric rise into the new year.

As Cointelegraph reported, analysts feel the time is now right for altcoins to have their next moment in the spotlight, with the potential upside able to eclipse even Bitcoin’s gains since the summer.

“They said that altcoins will not do well anymore. No more altseasons. Bitcoin dominance towards 80%+,” Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe summarized to Twitter followers on Monday.

“But then they didn't meet 2021 yet.”

FT reveals Bitcoin headline on 12th anniversary of genesis block

A timely tribute to the king of cryptocurrency features alongside a coronavirus headline, which says it all about the fiat economy in the 12 years since 2009.

Bitcoin (BTC) received a fitting yet accidental birthday present on Jan. 4 as the Financial Times made it front-page news on the 12 anniversary of its genesis block.

Released on Monday, the FT's upcoming headline had already made the rounds on crypto social media prior to publication. 

12 years later: No bailouts, just Bitcoin

The left-hand column of the front page was dedicated to Bitcoin's price surge, while the accompanying price chart made it as the paper's lead image.

BTC/USD weekly candle price chart (Bitstamp). Source: Tradingview

The timing could not have been any more conspicuous, coming just one day after Bitcoin celebrated its 12th birthday. On Jan. 3, 2009, another mainstream newspaper, United Kingdom-based The Times, led with the now-infamous headline "Chancellor on Brink of Second Bailout for Banks," which was added to Bitcoin's first block of transactions, also known as the genesis block.

Keeping Bitcoin company in 2021 was a headline, which some may argue is just as fitting, relating to coronavirus lockdowns — something that has wrought huge economic damage and sparked money printing on an unprecedented scale.

Unsurprisingly, proponents of Bitcoin as sound money and an escape from fiat inflation were in a celebratory mood as the FT headline went public.

"On the 1st business day of 2021, #Bitcoin takes its rightful place atop the Financial Times," Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy, summarized to Twitter followers, adding a quote by French author Victor Hugo.

Crypto leaves classic assets in the dust in 2021

As Cointelegraph reported, Bitcoin has already set itself apart as a macro investment in 2021, having beaten traditional assets outright in just four days. Much the same was true for 2020 and most years before, with only other cryptocurrencies and later Tesla stock providing meaningful competition.

"Bitcoin and Ether $ETH are already the biggest hits of 2021," Gemini exchange co-founder Tyler Winklevoss tweeted as the week began.

Jan. 3 also saw a marked decline in exchange balances, reminiscent of a publicity effort by Bitcoin OG Trace Mayer over the past three years.

Dubbed "Proof of Keys," Mayer appealed to investors to remove their coins from exchanges en masse on the same day in January as a means of taking control of one's finances and abiding by the Bitcoin ethos of "being your own bank."

On Monday, however, the trend had already reversed, with sudden volatility in Bitcoin seeing funds return to exchange order books.

Bitcoin price dip to $27K costs Binance long traders a record $190M in liquidations

Overleveraged traders feel the pain once again as volatility wipes out huge amounts of value in minutes.

Bitcoin (BTC) crashing to $27,700 and rebounding seconds later was a shock for some and financial ruin for others, data shows.

According to on-chain analytics resource Glassnode, futures traders with long positions lost a total of $190 million on Binance alone in a single hour — the most in history.

One exchange, 60 minutes, $190 million

The figures underscore the current face of Bitcoin as it circles new all-time highs and together with Ether (ETH) becomes the hottest ticket of 2021.

Longs had seen almost unbridled success throughout much of December and into the new year, with upside seeing little in the way of resistance. 

Despite warnings from various analysts that the bull run could not last uninterrupted forever, plenty of traders took on substantial risk, betting heavily on new highs continuing. In the event, $34,800 marked a definitive top, with BTC/USD subsequently shedding $7,000 in 24 hours, including $4,000 in under 60 minutes on Monday.

Bitcoin futures long liquidations (Binance) annotated chart. Source: Glassnode

The result for those who were overleveraged was plain to see.

"$190,000,000 (in long positions) were liquidated on #Binance within 10 minutes. Largest value to date," Glassnode commented alongside a chart showing Binance liquidations.

Risk vs. reward

As Cointelegraph reported, last week, it was short positions which came in for mass liquidiation as Bitcoin tore through $30,000 for the first time. That episode lost short traders a combined $100 million across exchanges.

"Get used to 5k dips as we go to $100k. Comes with the territory," Samson Mow, CSO of Bitcoin technology firm Blockstream, summarized on Twitter as the volatility continued.

Derivatives trading attached to Bitcoin and Ether meanwhile show no sign of fading in popularity. CME Group, one of the pioneers in Bitcoin futures, is set to launch Ether futures in Q1 this year.

Bitcoin price dives to $27.7K to fill giant futures gap in biggest drop since $20K

A dramatic reversal on Monday sees BTC/USD instantly fill the latest CME futures gap before bouncing off forecast levels below $28,000.

Bitcoin (BTC) lost $30,000 support on Jan. 4 as all-time highs gave way to a rapid retracement totalling thousands of dollars.

BTC price dips $4,000 in 60 minutes

Data from Cointelegraph Markets, Coin360 and TradingView showed BTC/USD shedding more than 12% in just one hour on Monday.

The pullback gathered pace after choppy trading behavior overnight on Sunday, with altcoins rising to take an ever larger slice of Bitcoin's market cap dominance.

At press time, amid heavy volatility, lows focused on $27,700 amid a bounce to nearer $30,000.

BTC/USD 1-minute candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

Exchange activity was picking up, data showed, with inflows rising dramatically on the day after traders removed funds last week.

Bitcoin exchange flows chart. Source: CryptoQuant

"Just woke up to the biggest $BTC dip we've had since breaking 20k," Venture Coinist podcast host Luke Martin summarized

"Down 20% from the peak....my brain is not used to 28k being a 20% drop though."

CME gap sees an unlikely instant fill

Those brought Bitcoin in line with short-term predictions from Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe, who identified the lower bound for Bitcoin in his latest YouTube video update.

"If we want to see some support zones on Bitcoin and expecting where we're going to move from, the first area is around $29,600, second area is around $27,600," he said just before the major losses told hold.

As Cointelegraph reported, statistician Willy Woo was unfazed about a significant pullback on Sunday, arguing that only a freak occurrence could take BTC/USD to $24,000 — the site of a "gap" in Bitcoin futures markets left from December.

$27,700 meanwhile fills the gap created on CME Bitcoin futures markets over the weekend, a classic move which had been absent from previous weeks.

All-time highs meet altseason: 5 things to watch in Bitcoin this week

Bitcoin preserves $30,000 so far but a mammoth rise in Ether and a market dominance drop sets the tone for an altcoin surge.

Bitcoin (BTC) is almost unrecognizable as it starts the first working week of 2021, retaining $30,000 support and hitting astronomical new highs.

Hard to believe for hodlers, price action continues to wow as Monday gets underway, and attention is turning to what might be next.

Cointelegraph takes a look at five factors that investors might wish to monitor in the coming days in what is one of the most volatile Bitcoin trading markets in history.

Stocks hit highs as Bitcoin “flips” the Dow

It’s another curious week for stocks as last week’s all-time highs on several indices look set to continue.

As the first few days of the new year drew to a close, the Dow Jones and S&P 500 hit record highs — this despite the encroaching coronavirus sparking ever tighter lockdowns across the world.

For Bitcoiners, the Dow took on a different type of significance last week, with BTC/USD “flipping” its 30,600 points for the first time as it continued on to $34,000 and higher.

This week, analysts predict stocks to go higher still, part of a long-anticipated rebound which, much like last year, appears at odds with the situation on the ground.

“A strong vaccine-led recovery in global growth will provide a large boost to cyclical assets, including commodities, cyclical equity sectors and emerging markets,” Goldman Sachs told Bloomberg as part of its 2021 outlook survey.

“However, the path may be tricky as the market balances spot growth weakness with a forward outlook that is more supportive.”

Not everyone was so bullish. Fidelity, the asset manager well known for its pioneering pro-Bitcoin stance, countered:

“2021 is likely to be about capturing relative opportunities as investors price in economic and virus-related developments.”
Bitcoin vs. stocks correlation chart. Source: Digital Assets Data

Futures gaps may stay forever unfilled

After clinching $34,800 over the weekend, Bitcoin is looking decidedly in need of a consolidatory period as the week gets underway.

The highs, which still seem unreal to many investors, have plenty of hurdles to overcome in order to defend themselves and not allow Bitcoin to cave to the bears.

One of the most pressing issues for traders is the Bitcoin futures “gap” produced by the weekend’s volatility. Lying between $29,695 and $32,400, the gap joins the one left last week as one of the largest ever seen on the Bitcoin futures chart.

Bitcoin futures 1-day candle chart (CME) with gaps visible. Source: TradingView

As Cointelegraph has previously explained, “gaps” in futures are the differences in price between the end of futures trading on a Friday and the start on the following Monday. When heavy volatility hits in between, the resulting void often forms a short-term price target.

In this case, Bitcoin thus has an impetus to retest levels at just below $30,000. Should it wish to fill lower gaps which remain untested, the market may dip further still — the pit of last weekend’s gap lies at $23,800.

While previous months saw many a gap get filled, however, the idea of a $24,000 Bitcoin is now a remote possibility, according to popular statistician Willy Woo.

“We'll never see $20k BTC again,” he forecast on Sunday.

“$24k support would need a black swan event to breakdown. Floor price supported by long term buyers is rising very fast.”

$20,000 itself forms a zone of interest for those studying gaps, with two large vacuums in futures markets still open below that significant level.

Difficulty, hash rate on track for fresh records

It’s all change for the better among Bitcoin’s core fundamentals, meanwhile. After a month of small decreases, network difficulty is once again set to push upwards to hit new record highs.

At the next automated readjustment later this week, difficulty is currently expected to increase by just over 5%.

The past two readjustments saw drops of 2.5% and 0.4% respectively, an interesting contrast to the rapid increases in spot price seen at the same time.

Difficulty is arguably Bitcoin’s most important technical aspect when it comes to its status as “hard” money, allowing the network essentially to govern itself and stay secure regardless of miner participation or price action.

In tandem with difficulty, hash rate is likewise challenging all-time highs. As of Monday, seven-day average values for the metric stand at 145 exahashes per second (EH/s), just 1 EH/s off record highs seen last October.

Hash rate refers to the computing power dedicated to participating in the Bitcoin network, and current data suggests that participation and desire to keep the network secure is stronger than ever.

Bitcoin 7-day average hash rate 6-month chart. Source: Blockchain

Ether returns to $1,000 after three years

Perhaps the most telling sign when it comes to price trajectory is coming from within cryptocurrency itself.

While Bitcoin alone is impressive, this weekend ended with an even more conspicuous surge in altcoins, and specifically Ether (ETH). The largest altcoin is up over 30% in the past 24 hours alone, bringing its weekly gains above 50%.

As Cointelegraph reported, Sunday saw it clinch a key level against BTC, and in dollar terms, the largest altcoin is back in four figures for the first time in three years.

Bitcoin vs. Ether year-to-date performance 2021. Source: Digital Assets Data

In the words of Cointelegraph Markets analyst Michaël van de Poppe, such a move suggests that a return of “altseason” — a period of rapid rises across altcoin markets while Bitcoin consolidates — has de facto arrived.

“Another week that Ethereum will close above the crucial threshold on the BTC pair,” he commented late Sunday.

“Most likely some sideways continuation before upwards continuation towards a new higher high. 2021 is looking bright for Ethereum.”

The token’s success was long in forming. Ether spent much of 2020 as the butt of jokes among Bitcoiners, as even the release of its long-awaited Ethereum 2.0 protocol transformation failed to have a noticeable impact on price.

Nonetheless, the altcoin was in fact the best investment of the year, outperforming Bitcoin versus its March lows when it traded at just $113 — one tenth of current levels.

ETH/USD 1-day candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingView

Here comes altseason!

If Ether is dictating the reemergence of altcoins, such as THETA, for example, it is already evident if one examines the state of Bitcoin’s market dominance.

As ETH/USD surged overnight on Sunday, the share of the total cryptocurrency market cap owned by Bitcoin began to fall dramatically. Against 73.5% earlier on Sunday, press-time levels are more like 68.3%, data shows.

Bitcoin market cap dominance 1-day candle chart. Source: TradingView

That kind of behavior is a classic indicator of altseason, and will remind longtime hodlers of the events of January 2018. At the time, Bitcoin was coming down from highs of near $20,000, but altcoins exploded, ETH/USD hitting current all-time highs of $1,500.

Given that Bitcoin has managed to crush its own record from 2017, it is that pattern of behavior which is fuelling speculation that Ether and other altcoins will go much higher in the short term.

“Bitcoin and ether ETH are already the biggest hits of 2021,” Tyler Winklevoss, co-founder of exchange Gemini, summarized to Twitter followers.

It’s not just Ether. Litecoin (LTC), the fourth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, has added 15% since Sunday, once more coming within a hair of flipping XRP to take the number three spot.

XRP, beset by problems thanks to legal action against Ripple, has still managed to put in some form of progress, rising by almost 10% overnight to reclaim $0.24.