First Mover Americas: Bitcoin’s Bitfinex-Led Surge

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for Feb. 27, 2024.

AccessTimeIconFeb 27, 2024 at 1:09 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 9, 2024 at 5:50 a.m. UTC

This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk's daily newsletter, putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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Bitcoin has rallied 11.5% in 24 hours, printing highs near $57,000 for the first time since late 2021. Traders from Bitfinex led the charge, snapping up $123 million worth of bitcoin during early trading in Asia, according to data tracked by pseudonymous analyst “exitpump.” Forced unwinding of short bets and decent spot buying on Binance added to the bullish momentum, which, as usual, lifted the broader market higher. The CoinDesk 20 Index, a wider market gauge, gained more than 8% over the same period. Pantera founder Dan Morehead said the spot ETFs have brought in a wave of institutional capital into the bitcoin market, explaining the rally. Inflows to the tune of 3,000 BTC per day, coupled with the impending 50% decline in daily BTC generation to 450 following April’s reward halving, means potential for price appreciation, Morehead explained, saying, “Crypto Spring has arrived early.”

Turks looking to diversify into alternative assets to beat domestic inflation can now trade cryptocurrencies on a platform owned by OKX, the world’s fourth-largest by trading volumes. OKX announced the launch of OKX.TR, a localized version of the platform in Turkey, with trading pairs denominated in Turkish lira. “Turkey is a very important and special market for us. It ranks high in terms of crypto adoption and crypto transaction volume,” OKX President Hong Fang said in an interview with CoinDesk. In 2021, Turkish citizens, facing high inflation and a fiat currency crisis, poured money into stablecoin tether and memecoin SHIB.

Uniswap’s native governance token UNI surged 60% on Friday after the decentralized exchange proposed distributing protocol fees to token stakers. The price rally saw a whale address, which received 5.44 million UNI in 2020, liquidate 90,000 tokens for $1.03 million, according to data tracked by blockchain sleuth Lookonchain. The wallet still holds 926,000 UNI tokens worth $10.6 million. At press time, UNI changed hands at $11.08, slightly down from Friday highs above $12.80. The token has gained 53% this year.

Chart of the Day

Bitcoin: 24-hour change in options open interest.
Bitcoin: 24-hour change in options open interest. (Amberdata)
  • The chart shows a 24-hour change in bitcoin options, open interest, or the number of active option contracts, at various strike levels.
  • Open interest has increased in call options at strikes $58,000, $60,000 and higher.
  • Call options give the purchaser the right but not the obligation to buy the underlying asset at a predetermined price at a later date. A call buyer is implicitly bullish on the market.
  • Source: Amberdata

- Omkar Godbole

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Edited by Sheldon Reback.

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Omkar Godbole

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