Bitcoin Briefly Tops $49K Before Selling Off as ETF Trading Frenzy Commences

Cryptocurrency-focused stocks such as Coinbase and bitcoin miners are also down significantly since Thursday's market open.

AccessTimeIconJan 11, 2024 at 5:24 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 8, 2024 at 7:46 p.m. UTC
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Bitcoin (BTC) on Thursday briefly topped $49,000 for the first time since December 2021 as U.S.-listed spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETF) commenced trading amid heightened anticipation.

The largest crypto asset by market capitalization climbed from below $46,000 earlier today to over $47,000, then accelerated, hitting a $49,042 during early U.S. trading session, according to CoinDesk Indices data, which collects pricing from multiple exchanges. Then, it gave up all its gains and buckled below $46,000.

After the roundtrip, BTC was still up 1% over the past 24 hours, trading slightly above $46,000.

For full coverage of bitcoin ETFs, click here.

Cryptocurrency-focused stocks such as Coinbase (COIN) also declined, erasing their pre-market gains. Coinbase (COIN) dropped 5% since trading opened, while bitcoin miners Marathon Digital (MARA) and Riot Platforms (RIOT) both endured over 10% losses.

Earlier, Mizuho Securities, with an underperform rating on Coinbase shares and a $54 price target, said spot ETF approval is a “pyrrhic victory for COIN,” and potential upside to revenue from bitcoin ETFs may be more muted than thought.

The highly anticipated debut of the eleven bitcoin ETFs unleashed significant volatility in the asset's price, while investors are watching closely how much interest the eleven funds will attract by the end of the day.

So far, BlackRock's IBIT is leading among the newly issued ETFs by trading volume with $500 million by 10:50 U.S. Eastern Time, according to BitMex Research. Grayscale's GBTC, the world's largest bitcoin investment fund that was uplisted from a closed-end fund to an ETF, recorded over $700 million in volumes in the first hour of trading.

Edited by Aoyon Ashraf.

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Krisztian  Sandor

Krisztian Sandor is a reporter on the U.S. markets team focusing on stablecoins and institutional investment. He holds BTC and ETH.


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