1. Market Wrap: Bitcoin Futures Premium Rises Again Despite Bitcoin’s Relatively Flat Performance
Bitcoin traders are increasing their bullish bets in futures markets — and taking more risk.
Bitcoin (BTC) was trading around $58,246.41 as of 20:00 UTC (4 p.m. ET). Slipping 1.31% over the previous 24 hours.
Bitcoin’s 24-hour range: $57,421.85-$59,484.20
BTC trades below its 10-hour and 50-hour averages on the hourly chart, a bearish signal for market technicians.
Recently, bitcoin’s price movements have been, well, less exciting than the triple- and sometimes quadruple-digit-percentage gains witnessed in alternative cryptocurrencies, or “altcoins.”
The №1 cryptocurrency has traded in a narrow range between $56,552 and $60,102 over the past week, while ether, the native token of the Ethereum blockchain, has climbed more than 20% to a new all-time high over $2,100.
But in the past couple weeks, traders in bitcoin derivative markets have been ratcheting up their bets on future gains.
2. Riding Bitcoin Surge, Coinbase Active Users Grew by 117% in Q1 2021; Revenue Tops $1.8B
Numbers published Tuesday ahead of a public listing next week show a profitable Coinbase capitalizing on the current market.
Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase saw a whopping 117% quarter-over-quarter increase in monthly transacting users, the firm revealed Tuesday in its voluntary earnings report.
All those users helped Coinbase rake in $1.8 billion over the quarter, driving a net income of approximately $730 million to $800 million, according to a new filing that comes ahead of the company’s Nasdaq listing next week.
All the numbers point to a business riding high as interest in cryptocurrency tracks upward with the price of bitcoin (BTC, -1.93%), ether (ETH, -0.85%) and other leading assets.
3. Crypto Won’t Be Money Until IRS Accepts It for Taxes, Top Forex Strategist Says
The greenback has something else going for it cryptocurrencies don’t: the bond market, notes Marc Chandler.
Just because bitcoin (BTC, -2.02%) has quintupled in value over the past few months, that doesn’t mean the U.S. dollar is about to get knocked off its perch as the world’s leading currency, according to a top foreign exchange analyst.
For one thing, central banks around the globe own roughly $3.1 trillion worth of U.S. Treasury debt that is denominated in greenbacks, and so have little incentive to let the dollar lose power to a cryptocurrency, said Marc Chandler, chief market strategist at Bannockburn Global Forex.
“What stands behind [the U.S. dollar] is something that the crypto space has not yet innovated and that is that central banks hold their dollars in Treasury bonds — not just in dollars but they have these Treasury bonds behind them,” Chandler said on CoinDesk TV’s “First Mover” show Tuesday.
4. XRP Rises Above $1 for First Time Since March 2018, Despite SEC Shadow
The XRP token’s price continues to draw support from a community of loyal and devoted cryptocurrency traders.
A rally divorced from reality. A reader might not be blamed for thinking that, after looking at the payment-focused cryptocurrency XRP’s rally to a three-year high above $1 in the face of lingering regulatory concern.
There’s more to it, according to some observers. The token might be getting price support from the XRP community, popularly known as the XRP Army.
In December, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a case against Ripple Inc., which uses XRP in its payments network, for raising $1.3 billion by selling the token in unregistered securities offerings. While there is no closure yet, the cryptocurrency has climbed to the highest level since March 2018, having erased December’s decline from roughly to $0.60 to $0.20 in recent weeks.
5. Crypto Asset Flows Bounced Back Last Week, Ending Record $4.5B Quarterly Haul
Inflows to crypto funds jumped from a five-month low of $21 million the prior week.
Investment flows into cryptocurrency funds jumped fivefold last week to $106 million, rebounding from a five-month low, according to a new report from the digital-asset manager CoinShares.
The prior week had seen the fund flows dry up to about $21 million, the lowest since October, as sideways trading action in bitcoin (BTC) and other digital-asset markets failed to inspire buyers.
The latest week’s tally wrapped up a record quarter for crypto fund flows, at $4.5 billion, some 11% higher than in the final quarter of 2020, according to CoinShares.
That pace represented a slowdown from the prior quarter’s growth of 240%, potentially indicating waning interest or indecision among digital asset investors — or maybe just the difficulty of increasing off a bigger base. CoinShares cautioned against drawing conclusions.
“It is not indicative of a slowing trend, as quarterly growth rates tend to be highly varied,” wrote CoinShares.
Bitcoin products garnered the majority of last week’s inflows, around $83 million, versus about $20 million for Ethereum (ETH) products.
“Assets under management (AUM) for both active and passive digital asset investment products are now at an all-time high of $59 billion.”
Active investment managers (strategies that adjust portfolio weightings based on market conditions rather than following an index) make up a decreasing amount of total AUM, to 1.5% of total AUM during the first quarter versus 3.6% in Q4 2020.
That shift might reflect increasing demand for “passive” investment vehicles like trusts and exchange-traded funds, which aren’t yet approved for trading in the U.S. but have garnered substantial interest in other countries, including Canada.
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April 7, 2021