Market Wrapping: Bitcoin is Hanging at $ 36.4K While Ether Flies to Over $ 1.4K

Trading action in the bitcoin market slowed Tuesday while the price of ether broke new ground.

  • Bitcoin (BTC) is trading at around $ 36,483 at 21:00 UTC (4 pm ET). Climbed 0.85% over the previous 24 hours.
  • Bitcoin 24 Hour Range: $ 36,029- $ 37,876 (CoinDesk 20)
  • BTC below the 10-hour moving averages but above the 50 hours on the hourly chart, a sideways signal for market technicians.

Bitcoin trading on Bitstamp since January 15.
Source: TradingView

The price of bitcoin remained in a fairly tight range on Tuesday, spending most of US trading hours between $ 36,200 and $ 37,200. At around 15:00 UTC (11 am ET), the price was as high as $ 37,876 before falling and was $ 36,483 at press time.

“Interesting yesterday that bitcoin has held its price in a quiet US market with the [Martin Luther King Day] holiday, ”noted Chris Thomas, head of digital assets at Swissquote Bank. “This also suggests that US clients, retail and institutional, are quite important.”

Read more: Bitcoin Price Must Pass $ 40K to Stop Exodus Traders: JPMorgan

“We had two unsuccessful attempts to cut and stay above $ 40,000, but we saw that at $ 20,000 and $ 30,000 as well,” said Thomas. “I suspect we’ll get through $ 40,000 the next couple of days.”

Bitcoin historical price last week.
Source: CoinDesk 20

Meanwhile, as prices remain less volatile than before, traders appear to be adding more risk.

“Looks like bitcoin is being squeezed between a $ 34,000- $ 38,000 tightening range over the past week, the market is becoming increasingly influential,” noted Cindy Leow, portfolio manager for a multi-strategy trading company 256 Capital partners.

According to data aggregator Skew, average funding for large venues remains high. Kraken in particular has shown considerable volatility in financing rates, but by Tuesday it is offering crypto holders the most to provide liquidity to leverage long at 0.0471%.

Bitcoin swaps finance with Kraken in yellow.
Source: Skew

“We see this as a short-term bearish, noting that too many market participants are keen to get down,” Leow added. “Adding to that, sellers seem tired, and the market is short on dollars with USD / stablecoin wet lending rates.”

According to DeFi Pulse, lending on the decentralized finance market, or DeFi, has passed $ 12 billion, with the dcoin housing Maker (DAI) taking over 39% of that share. Dai currently accounts for $ 4.7 billion of DeFi’s lending market, up over 11% on Tuesday.

Total locked crypto, in USD terms, in DeFi in the last three months.
Source: DeFi pulse

Some of this DeFi spike also comes from a rising price in ether, which saw Tuesday break out into fresh highs while bitcoin remained relatively quiet. “Ether looks really strong and I think we’re now going to race between ETH $ 2,000 and $ 50,000 BTC,” said Thomas of Swissquote.

Spot ether (blue) spot price performance against bitcoin last year.
Source: TradingView

“We see ETH likely facing some resistance at its highest level ever, similar to how BTC was initially rejected in November 2020 at its previous high of $ 19,000 before resuming an uptrend,” said 256 Capital’s Leow.

Ether is hitting a record high

Ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, was up on Tuesday, trading around $ 1,384 and climbing 12.7% in 24 hours at 21:00 UTC (4:00 pm ET).

The price of ether spot hit an all-time high Tuesday, going up to $ 1,439 and just edging its previous high of $ 1,432.88 set on January 13, 2018.

Read more: Ethereum Cryptocurrency Ether Sets New All-Time Price Near $ 1,440

George Clayton, managing partner of Crypanalysis Capital’s crypto fund, questions the fundamentals behind ether’s rise while bitcoin seems unrelated to ETH’s rise. “Interesting price action,” Clayton told CoinDesk.

He noted that average fees on the network usually pick up with these price ranges, which actually hurts usability. DeFi Ethereum projects become more expensive to use during price runs due to the need for processing fees, or “gas” in ether increments, to use it.

Ethereum fees (blue) and ether price (gray) in the last three months.
Source: Glassnode

“With fees at such astronomical levels, Ethereum is becoming sclerotic and unique,” added Clayton. “Hopefully ETH 1.5 and rollups relieve some pressure.”

Other markets

Digital assets on the CoinDesk 20 are mostly green Tuesday. Notable winners at 21:00 UTC (4:00 pm ET):

  • Oil was up 1.8%. Barrel price of raw Central Texas Intermediate: $ 53.00.
  • Gold was flat, in the green 0.10% and at $ 1,838 at press time.

Read more: Janet Yellen says Cryptocurrencies are a ‘concern’ in Terrorist Financing

  • The 10-year US Treasury bond yield climbed on Tuesday to 1.089 and in the green 0.16%.

The CoinDesk 20: The Most Important Assets to Market