On-chain data shows big money continues to chase bitcoin amid the frantic bull run. That’s a sign of institutions catching the “FOMO” bug, according to one analyst.

  • Institution-focused Coinbase Pro exchange registered an outflow of over 35,000 bitcoin worth more than $1 billion early Saturday, according to data source CryptoQuant.
  • The large outflow comes a day after 12,063 coins left the exchange and represents institutional FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) buying, according to Ki Young Ju, CEO of the Korea-based blockchain analytics firm CryptoQuant. 
  • Massive outflows from Coinbase Pro usually end in Coinbase's cold wallets for custody, which is directly integrated with the exchange's over-the-counter (OTC) desk. Institutions typically transact over-the-counter in a bid to avoid influencing the spot market price, as discussed in December. 
  • Bitcoin's rally from October lows near $10,000 has been mainly fueled by institutional demand. The ascent has gone ballistic over the past four weeks, with prices rising from $19,000 to over $30,000. 
  • While Ju's claim that institutions are now buying on fear of missing out can be challenged, there is evidence that persistent demand from big players is creating a supply squeeze, allowing for a continued price rally.
  • For instance, at least 47,000 bitcoins have left Coinbase Pro in the first two days of the year, while miners have minted just over 1,700 bitcoin. Bitcoin rose from $29,800 to new record highs over $33,000 early today and was last seen changing hands near $31,600.
  • The cryptocurrency is already up 10% this year, having scored a 300% gain last year, according to CoinDesk 20 data.

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