Bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) both fell below their recent support levels in the past 24 hours in moves that caused over $250 million in liquidations, according to data from Coinglass. The crypto markets followed a drop in U.S. equities after the release of higher-than-expected inflation readings for August.
Futures tracking bitcoin lost upward of $130 million, while ether futures lost $125 million. Ethereum classic (ETC) futures saw over $10 million in losses – an unusual figure for the asset – amid recent trading interest in the tokens.
Bitcoin fell 9% in the past 24 hours, the most among major cryptocurrencies, while ether dropped 6%, CoinDesk data shows. Ether dropped to as low as $1,560 during late U.S. hours on Tuesday, before recovering to as much as $1,622 during Asian morning hours on Wednesday.
The sudden drop on Tuesday night was prompted by traders reacting to higher-than-expected consumer price index numbers.
Elsewhere, XRP dropped 8%, solana’s SOL fell 7%, and cardano’s ADA declined 7.5%. Outside of major cryptocurrencies, cosmos’s ATOM fell 11%, ApeCoin’s APE dropped 12%, and luna classic (LUNC) dropped 14%, continuing slides from earlier this week.
Data suggests part of the price volatility on ether futures came as funding rates surged to yearly highs of nearly 0.15%, as analytics firm Coinalyze noted on Twitter.
Funding rates are periodic payments made by traders based on the difference between prices in the futures and spot markets. Depending on their open positions, traders will either pay or receive funding.
The payments ensure there are always participants on both sides of the trade. Participants use sophisticated strategies to collect funding rates while hedging losses due to price movements – which creates market dynamics that contribute to price volatility.
Meanwhile, some markets analysts told CoinDesk that bitcoin is losing its appeal as a potential “inflation hedge."
“In countries where currency depreciation has been greatest, such as Japan, where the dollar to the yen has gained more than 20% since the beginning of the year, bitcoin has lost 35% of its value,” currency trader Daniel Kostecki of investment company Conotoxia said in a Telegram message.
“Against the Korean won, the dollar has appreciated 15% since the beginning of the year, while the BTC/KRW exchange rate has fallen more than 40% in that time,” Kostecki remarked, adding that “even gold was not been able to counter current inflationary trends.”
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.