Bitcoin Slumbers as ETF Hopes Simmer; PEPE Leads Altcoin Gains

Meme coin and low-caps remain favorite plays among traders as bitcoin investors look to a swift ETF judgment.

AccessTimeIconAug 14, 2023 at 11:21 a.m. UTC
Updated Aug 14, 2023 at 3:02 p.m. UTC

Bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) traded flat on Monday after a relatively uneventful weekend for crypto majors in the absence of a strong catalyst that could help add buying pressure to a dim market.

Bitcoin traded just over $29,300 while ether flirted around the $1,850 mark. Both assets have returned slightly over 1% for investors in the past week - making it one of the lowest volatility periods.

The bitcoin lull meant most majors and mid-cap tokens, such as cardano's ADA, solana's SOL and lido (LDO) moved similarly little, with sudden movements getting sold off quickly and no major declines.

The lack of market movement has possibly led traders to meme coins such as shiba inu (SHIB) and pepe (PEPE), data analytics firm Santiment said in a Saturday report. Such rallies often mark local market tops - with record open interest in SHIB futures blaring a likely warning sign for bullish bitcoin moves in the coming weeks.

“Historically, we need to be aware that surges from speculative assets that really only see minimal development activity (at best), this can often signal that the entire crypto market may be veering toward 'overheated' territory,” Santiment said.

Meanwhile, some market traders say an ETF ruling could bring back the infamous volatility of the crypto market.

“While the options market's expected volatility (DVOL) remains notably low, we are observing a slight uptick in BTC, especially visible versus ETH,” shared Deribit chief commercial officer Luuk Strijers in an email. “A potential catalyst for this could be the looming ETF news on the shorter term and the halving impact on the longer run.

“Although the chances of imminent ETF-related news are slim, any announcement would likely have a more pronounced effect on BTC than on ETH,” Strijers added.

Edited by Parikshit Mishra.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Shaurya Malwa

Shaurya is the Deputy Managing Editor for the Data & Tokens team, focusing on decentralized finance, markets, on-chain data, and governance across all major and minor blockchains.