A bullish stock market left bitcoin behind Monday with the world’s oldest cryptocurrency trading flat.
- Bitcoin (BTC) trading around $9,226 as of 20:00 UTC (4 p.m. ET) and flat, up only 0.10% over the previous 24 hours.
- Bitcoin’s 24-hour range: $9,193-$9,339
- BTC price below 10-day and 50-day moving average, a bearish signal for market technicians.
The absence of action in bitcoin is in contrast to the performance of global equities on Monday. Stocks across the world today:
- In Asia the Nikkei 225 closed up 2.2% led by big gains in Mazda Motors and Nikon.
- In Europe the FTSE 100 index ended the day up 1.3% as optimism for a coronavirus drug treatment led stocks higher.
- The U.S. S&P 500 index slipped 1% after a rally lost steam and tech stocks ended the day in the red.
“In recent trading sessions, bitcoin traded in a narrow range of $9,100-$9,200,” said Constantin Kogan, partner at cryptocurrency fund BitBull Capital. “After a short-term bullish impulse, the asset managed to peak at $9,300, followed by a downward correction.”
Over the past few days, bitcoin has approached $9,320, only to see the price drop, Kogan noted.
“The first resistance for bitcoin is at $9,320, the next important zone, the passage of which will give strength to the bulls at $9,400.”
“There is a clear lack of energy in the bitcoin market,” said Chris Thomas, head of digital assets for broker Swissquote. “DeFi has more energy just now [and] some are focusing on that.”
Spot exchanges such as Coinbase continue to be plagued with low trading volumes in July, said BitBull’s Kogan. He also pointed out the uncertainty bitcoin traders are currently facing in these unprecedented economic times. “The Index of Fear and Greed has increased by several points since last week and approached a neutral value, which indicates confusion among market participants,” said Kogan.
Despite the uncertainty, the bitcoin mining sector is showing no signs of slowing down, Kogan noted. “The bitcoin hashrate has reached a new maximum. This indicates the continued interest of miners in cryptocurrency mining,” he said.
Regardless of the bitcoin volume slump, traders always find assets to trade. Josh Rager, a trader and adviser for crypto brokerage LevelInvest has been focusing on altcoins - alternative assets to bitcoin. “A slow grind is good. I'm neutral, just trading alts,” Rager told CoinDesk.
Ethereum fees are up
Ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, was flat Monday, trading around $238 and in the red 0.10% in 24 hours as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET).
Over the past year, Ethereum network fees have risen from 0.1131 to 0.5089 ETH. That is a 350% bump as usage of the network for decentralized finance, or DeFi, applications has increased. Stablecoins, lending and trading via Ethereum smart contracts are some of the most popular, according to data aggregator DeFi Pulse.
Goerge Clayton, managing partner of Cryptanalysis Capital, says the rise in fees could be a sign that the Ethereum network could reach some sort of limitation in transactions. “ETH fees are rising,” Clayton said. “Not sure where it all ends up. Could be a choke point for that sector soon.”
Notable losers as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET):
- Oil is down 2.3%. Price per barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude: $39.64
- Gold is flat Monday, in the green 0.18% at $1,801 per ounce
- U.S. Treasury bonds slipped Monday. Yields, which move in the opposite direction as price, are down the most on the two-year, in the red 8.7%.
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