It was $10,000 or bust as bitcoin traded unremarkably for much of Monday.
Bitcoin (BTC) was trading around $9,706 as of 20:00 UTC (4 p.m. ET), slipping by less than a percent over the previous 24 hours.
At 00:00 UTC on Monday (8:00 p.m. Sunday ET), bitcoin was changing hands ataround $9,760 on spot exchanges including Coinbase. The price has stayed more or less in a range between $9,600 and 9,700, keeping bitcoin above its 50-day and 10-day moving averages, a bullish technical indicator. This sentiment was helped by large volumes of trading Sunday, when prices rallied from below $9,400 to as high as $9,800.
On a relatively quiet Monday, many traders continue to view a break above $10,000 as the make-or-break signal on bitcoin’s continued strength.
“The market looks calm and the volume in the top-tier spot exchange volume is pretty low,” said Sasha Goldberg, a senior trading specialist for crypto firm Efficient Frontier. “We are close to the $10,000 limit,” he added. “If bitcoin is not able to go above that level and stay there, it’s possible that we’ll see a pullback to the $8,000 level.”
Despite the lack of action, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization has made very positive gains overall in 2020, said Josh Rager, a cryptocurrency trader and founder of educational platform BlockRoots. “Bitcoin is still near $10,000. Just because it’s not pumping, it’s still performing well,” he said.
Since the start of 2020, bitcoin has appreciated over 35%, while gold is up 11% and the S&P 500 index of U.S. stocks is flat, back to where it was at the start of the year.
“Friday’s incredibly positive U.S. nonfarm payrolls number has led to the largest divergence between Gold and S&P 500 prices since the March lows,” said Singapore-based QCP Capital in an investor note.
Rager, the crypto trader, sees stocks being in the green as a temporary condition. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more pumps on stocks and then another major pullback,” he added.
Digital assets on CoinDesk’s big board are mixed Monday.
Ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, is trading around $242 and is flat, up less than a percent in 24 hours as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET). It’s performing similar to bitcoin Monday, but can that last? Jack Tan, managing partner of Taiwan-based trading firm Kronos Research, thinks ether could do better in the long term. “At this point, we feel that ether is more or less correlated with bitcoin. However, ether might slightly outperform bitcoin going forth,” he said.
Cryptocurrency winners on the day include monero (XMR) up 2.6%, qtum (QTUM) climbing 2% and decred (DCR) in the green 1%. Losers include litecoin (LTC) down 1.4%. dogecoin (DOGE) in the doghouse 1.3%. and bitcoin sv (BSV) in the red 1.1%. All price changes were as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET).
In commodities, oil is taking a dip, down 2% as a barrel of crude is priced at $38 at press time.
Gold is up 1% Monday, trading around $1,699 for the day.
In the U.S., the S&P 500 index of companies ended trading up 1.2%, wiping away all of its losses this year on positive news amid the easing of coronavirus-related lockdowns.
In Europe, the FTSE 100 index of top companies ended trading flat, down less than a percent as the market lost some steam following the past week’s optimism.
The Nikkei 225 of top companies in Japan closed trading in the green 1.3% as the index returned to a level not seen since the coronavirus pandemic shocked the global economy.
U.S. Treasury bonds all slipped Monday. Yields, which move in the opposite direction as price, fell most on the 10-year, in the red 3%.