Bitcoin Completes Second Full Week Below $20K as Aptos Finds Market Bottom

Bitcoin stayed unusually steady, with traditional markets in flux. The freshly launched aptos token staged a minor recovery after its initial flop.

AccessTimeIconOct 21, 2022 at 6:48 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 24, 2022 at 6:49 p.m. UTC

Bitcoin notched its 14th consecutive day of trading below $20,000, but was holding remarkably steady despite ongoing turmoil in traditional markets.

Bitcoin (BTC), the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, was trading at around $19,100, little changed in the past 24 hours. The CoinDesk Market Index was up 0.5%. Ether (ETH) was up 1.4% to $1,310 as of press time.

The historically high-volatility crypto market remained unusually stable this week compared with traditional markets whipsawed by speculation over the Federal Reserve’s plans.

While the Fed is expected to raise interest rates by another 75 basis points (0.75 percentage point) during its next meeting on Nov. 2-3, the CME FedWatch tool currently shows that traders see roughly a 50/50 chance that the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will raise rates by just 50 basis points in December. Officials say such a downshift might be warranted to prevent over-tightening.

Traditional markets’ turmoil also came after the political shakeup in the U.K. and an apparent move by the Japanese government to prop up the country’s ailing yen. Data showed that bitcoin’s 30-day price volatility is now almost identical to that of the U.K. currency.

Investors are unpacking what the right strategy is for bitcoin in this market – or even starting to focus on the long-term future, such as the Bitcoin blockchain’s next halving.

“Traditionally stable long-term investments like government bonds have seen prices fluctuating wildly, and overall losing value," JB Graftieaux, CEO of crypto exchange Bitstamp, told CoinDesk in an interview. “Investors looking at the opportunity to invest for the long term may well see a lot of value to be had in crypto assets.”

Alexandre Lores, director of blockchain market research at Quantum Economics, said he saw a significant number of institutional players build products in the past bear market cycle. And that might be happening again.

“I see institutional players and big venture capitals are really more able to time the market and buy cheap and sell expensive, so I think those things will trigger a really nice bull market,” Lores said in a phone interview with CoinDesk.

Aptos flop

The debut of FTX- and A16z-backed new layer 1 blockchain Aptos caught the industry's attention this week – mainly because it was such a flop.

Aptos's APT token rose 4.5% to $7.40 on Friday, according to CoinMarketCap.

But the APT price is still well off the $9 where it started trading, as CoinDesk previously reported. Aptos also faced community criticism surrounding the amount of its native APT tokens held by private investors.

“Aptos had a bumpy start,” Adrian Fritz, research associate at 21Shares, told CoinDesk in an email.

Lyllah Ledesma contributed to this report.

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