Bitcoin Tops $44K, With Whale Accumulation Suggesting Conviction in More Price Gains

Continuing advances for U.S. stock markets also likely supported risk assets like crypto, with key indices making new all-time highs.

AccessTimeIconFeb 7, 2024 at 9:36 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 8, 2024 at 9:14 p.m. UTC
  • BTC broke above $44,000 for the first time since Jan. 12, the day after the spot ETF debuts.
  • Bitcoin addresses with over 1,000 BTC grew significantly over the past two weeks, one analyst noted.

Bitcoin (BTC) surged Wednesday over $44,000 to a fresh four-week high amid increased BTC accumulation by large holders and new all-time highs in U.S. equity indices.

The largest and oldest crypto by market value rose from $42,700 earlier in the day to as much as $44,300, its highest price since Jan. 12, the day after spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETF) began trading in the U.S.

Bitcoin's 2.5% advance over the past 24 hours is pacing the CoinDesk 20's 1.6% gain over the same time frame. Ether (ETH) is among other upside movers, ahead 2.3%. Lagging is Cardano (ADA) with a 0.4% decline.

Bitfinex analysts pointed out earlier this week that increased selling by miners could have been a reason why BTC prices were pressured recently. However, an opposite dynamic today may have overwhelmed sellers.

Crypto analyst Ali Martinez noted in a X post Wednesday that bitcoin whales – large investors – increased their asset accumulation. The number of bitcoin wallets holding over 1,000 tokens (roughly $44 million) rose to a multi-month high of 73, said Martinez, citing Glassnode data.

Continuing advances for U.S. stock markets also likely supported risk assets like crypto, with S&P 500 closing at a record high just shy of the 5,000 level, The Dow Jones Industrial Average was just a few ticks from it all-time high, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite continued to close in on its record.

Concerns about the health of regional bank New York Community Bancorp (NYCB) appeared to ease, with shares erasing big early day losses and closing higher by 6.7%. The lender late Tuesday issued a statement to calm market participants about its liquidity and deposit stability after rating agency Moody's downgraded its credit to junk grade.

Ether leads altcoin gains on ETF optimism

Ethereum's ether (ETH) gain took it above $2,400 for the first time in two weeks on rejuvenated spot ETF optimism.

Earlier in the day, asset managers Ark Invest and 21Shares amended their joint application to allow cash creations, bringing it more aligned with the recently approved spot bitcoin ETFs to perhaps preemptively appease regulators. The updated filing also tentatively opened the possibility of staking some of the fund's tokens to earn rewards.

Ether-adjacent tokens such as scaling network Polygon's MATIC, Optimism's OPT, Arbitrum's ARB advanced 2%-4%, while liquid staking protocol Lido's LDO jumped 5%.

Edited by Stephen Alpher.


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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.