Bitcoin Shows No Signs of Overheating, Despite Doubling This Year: Analysis

Bitcoin has doubled this year. The bullish trend may continue unabated as key indicator shows no signs of overheating, according to IntoTheBlock.

AccessTimeIconOct 30, 2023 at 12:45 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 30, 2023 at 2:28 p.m. UTC

Bitcoin (BTC), the leading cryptocurrency by market value, has doubled this year to over $34,000. Still, the market shows no signs of overheating, a positive sign for traders anticipating unabated gains, according to blockchain analytics firm IntoTheBlock.

The firm’s view is based on an on-chain indicator called the market value to realized value (MVRV) ratio, which measures the spread between bitcoin’s market capitalization and realized capitalization.

The ratio currently stands at 170% or significantly lower than the 300% threshold, historically marking major market tops.

"The bitcoin market value to realized value (MVRV) ratio shows that despite reaching yearly highs, bitcoin is not as overheated yet as during previous bull markets," blockchain analytics firm IntoTheBlock said in the weekly newsletter.

“Historically, bitcoin bull markets have peaked around 300%+ MVRV, which, in comparison to the current 150% value, suggests the bull market has room to run further,” IntoTheBlock added.

The ratio is nowhere close to the feared 300% threshold. (IntoTheBlock)
The ratio is nowhere close to the feared 300% threshold. (IntoTheBlock) (IntoTheBlock)

Market capitalization refers to the total dollar value of the supply in circulation, as calculated by the daily average price across major exchanges. The realized value, considered a relatively better gauge of fair value, approximates the value paid for all existing coins by adding the market value of coins when they change hands through an on-chain transaction.

Very high values indicate bitcoin's market price is overvalued relative to its realized or fair value, while extremely low values suggest otherwise.

Another factor suggesting bitcoin's peak may be higher than the recent high of $35,000 is the low investor interest in trading meme cryptocurrencies like SHIB.

While bitcoin has surged 27% this month, the notional open interest or dollar value locked in the number of active SHIB perpetual contracts on Binance remains flat at around $35 million, according to Coinglass data. Past data show that bitcoin peaks when meme coin frenzy grips the market, with open interest in SHIB rising above $100 million.

That said, investors should be vigilant about the potential escalation of geopolitical tensions and continued oil rally, with prices topping $100 per barrel. These developments could lead to broad-based risk aversion and put downward pressure on bitcoin.

“Macro forces and potential black swans could bring a correction following the recent appreciation,” IntoTheBlock noted.

Edited by Parikshit Mishra.


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Omkar Godbole

Omkar Godbole is a Co-Managing Editor on CoinDesk's Markets team.