Bitcoin dips with US futures as China data hamper risk sentiment

The largest cryptocurrency fell as much as 2.2% and was trading at $30 360 as of 11:50 a.m. in Tokyo.

Bitcoin dipped alongside US equity futures Monday after poor Chinese economic activity data took a chunk out of risk sentiment.

The largest cryptocurrency fell as much as 2.2% and was trading at $30 360 as of 11:50 a.m. in Tokyo. Other tokens including Ether and Avalanche were on the back foot too. S&P 500 futures were in the red after the Chinese figures pointed to economic contraction.

Overall, however, digital-asset markets were calmer compared with last week’s turmoil over a collapsed stablecoin.

Bitcoin dipped to a low of $25 425 on Thursday after the TerraUSD algorithmic stablecoin unraveled, throwing the entire ecoystem that supports it into disarray. At its height, the market panic engulfed the $76 billion stablecoin Tether, a key cog in cryptoassets that briefly dipped from its dollar peg.

“We have witnessed the rapid decline of a major project, which sent ripples across the industry, but also a new found resiliency in the market that did not exist during the last market downswing,” Changpeng Zhao, chief executive officer of crypto exchange Binance Holdings Ltd., tweeted on Sunday.

One difference between the current environment and other prolonged downturns such as the “crypto winter” in 2018 is the amount of institutions now involved in the market, which may be a source of support, said Paul Veradittakit, an partner at digital asset manager Pantera Capital.

“Compared to 2018, there are more institutional investors with exposure to crypto and most see this as a buying opportunity,” said Veradittakit.

Ebbing rally

Monday’s price action saw Bitcoin give back some of a Sunday rally. The total market value of cryptocurrencies has dropped by about $250 billion in the past seven days to roughly $1.37 trillion, according to data from CoinGecko. Bitcoin is some 56% off its November all-time high.

While crypto markets may have digested the worst of the TerraUSD fallout, the asset class faces other challenges — most notably, rising global interest rates and tighter liquidity conditions.

“I remain long-term bullish, especially on Bitcoin,” said Vasja Zupan, president of cryptocurrency exchange Matrix. “But I do foresee high volatility for some time followed by a period of much lower volumes at lower prices before we can expect trending to new all-time highs.”

© 2022 Bloomberg

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