Are Bitcoin traders losing hope? Top traders’ metric hits two-week low


Bitcoin briefly flirted with the $72,000 resistance on June 7, but its intraday gains quickly evaporated, sending the cryptocurrency down to $69,000. More concerningly, two indicators, including exchanges’ top traders’ long-to-short metric, suggest that Bitcoin (BTC) investors are becoming less optimistic. Is the Bitcoin bull market over, at least for the short term?

Bitcoin and gold traded down amid the S&P 500 all-time high

The S&P 500 index reached a new intraday all-time high on June 7 after the United States reported a 272,000 increase in nonfarm payroll jobs in May, significantly surpassing the previous month’s figure of 165,000 jobs. A strong labor market is generally beneficial for credit and consumption and, thus, for publically listed companies. People are more likely to spend when the job market is resilient, regardless of the cost of capital.

The relationship between job creation and corporate earnings is particularly favorable, especially since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that wages increased by 0.4% in May from the previous month, with the participation of prime-age workers, ages 25–54, reaching its highest level in 22 years at 83.6%. Despite the decline in consumer sector U.S. stocks on June 7, the tech sector more than compensated for the move.

Robert Sockin, Citi’s senior global economist, noted that the longer the U.S. Federal Reserve keeps interest rates above 5.25%, the higher the risk of a recession, as reported by Yahoo Finance. However, there is no indication of an imminent risk based on the most recent U.S. unemployment data, which stands at 4%. According to the CME FedWatch Tool, investors are currently pricing in a 51% chance that the Fed will cut rates by September, down from 69% the day before.

Bitcoin was not the only asset class negatively impacted by the macroeconomic data and investors’ reduced expectations of interest rate cuts. Gold plummeted to $2,300 after flirting with $2,390 in the early hours of June 7. Similarly, the U.S. Treasury two-year yield jumped from 4.74% to 4.87% during the same period, indicating that traders are dumping their fixed-income positions.

While it might seem inconsistent that Bitcoin traded down following gold and fixed-income while the stock market decoupled, one must consider that the largest U.S.-listed companies hold a combined $3.6 trillion in cash and equivalents. These holdings can either reap money-market funds returns or be deployed on stock buyback programs. Essentially, even if corporate profits suffer, the price impact will be much smaller compared to other assets.

Bitcoin top traders recently reduced their bullish bets

To understand if whales’ sentiment has been affected by the rejection of the $72,000 price resistance, one should analyze data from BTC futures markets. The top traders’ long-to-short ratio consolidates positions across spot, perpetual and monthly futures contracts. A higher ratio favors long (buy) positions, while the opposite indicates professional traders are favoring shorts (sell) contracts.

Top traders BTC long-to-short ratio. Source: Coinglass

At Binance, the current long-to-short ratio stands at 1.35, a less optimistic stance compared to a week prior on May 31, when the indicator stood at 1.58, favoring longs. Similarly, OKX top traders are now less bullish compared to May 31, as the long-to-short ratio declined to 1.22 from 1.79. On average, the indicator dropped to its lowest level in more than two weeks, which is somewhat concerning, but is still favoring bullish bets in absolute terms.

However, other metrics, such as the premium for stablecoins in China, show a modest increase in retail trader demand. Excessive retail inflow typically causes the stablecoin premium to soar above 1.5%, while bear markets lead to a discount.

USC Coin (USDC) peer-to-peer trades vs. USD/CNY. Source: OKX

The USD Coin (USDC) premium in China has maintained levels just above the 1% neutral threshold, completely ignoring the BTC price correction on June 7. From one perspective, bulls can take comfort in knowing that neither whales nor retail traders are panic-selling. Such data supports the idea that Bitcoin top traders’ long-to-short rate might eventually improve as the $69,000 support shows its strength.

This article is for general information purposes and is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal or investment advice. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

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