On Aug. 8, Bitcoin recorded a massive drop from $7,200 to $6,150, a 14 percent drop within a 24-hour period.
Most investors and prominent analysts have attributed the abrupt decline in the Bitcoin price to the decision of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to delay the approval of the VanEck-SolidX Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). However, some investors disagree.
What Caused it?
Bitcoin and the rest of the cryptocurrency market recorded one of the steepest falls in recent months as the market lost $50 billion of its valuation within a seven-day period.
The fall of Bitcoin–which seems to have caused the rest of the market to fall by a large margin–coincided with the release of the SEC’s decision, leading the public to believe that the delay in the approval of the VanEck Bitcoin ETF caused the price of the dominant cryptocurrency to plummet.
In the cryptocurrency sector, many investors and traders tend to confuse coincidence with causation, often attempting to justify every price movement of Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies through news and events.
In reality, both positive and negative developments in the cryptocurrency sector have minimal impact on price trends, and due to the sheer size of the over-the-counter (OTC) market, which researchers at Tabb Group claimed to be two to three times larger than the cryptocurrency exchange market, it is highly unlikely for minor developments to affect the value of digital assets.
In addition, if developments in the cryptocurrency sector supposedly have such a profound impact on the value of cryptocurrencies, the announcement by the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Starbucks and Microsoft to establish a cryptocurrency exchange should have led the crypto market to surge in value, given that some analysts have argued that the NYSE, Starbucks and Microsoft’s collaborative effort to be the biggest development in the history of the sector.
People love answers, and by justifying the price movement of digital assets with plausible reasons and actual developments in crypto, investors feel more confident in the market. Admitting that the cryptocurrency exchange market depends on a larger market that is opaque and not open to the public is difficult, and seeing such a high rate volatility in the market without clarity is also grueling for investors.
As for the recent drop in the valuation of the cryptocurrency market, a variety of factors may have caused it. Many believe the drop was caused by a large sell-off by whales in the OTC market, while others believe it to be the strengthening hand of the bears who have been looking for an opportunity to dump a large chunk of Bitcoin and Ether into the market.
It is also a possibility that the dump of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Ether by initial coin offerings (ICO), which have raised hundreds of thousands of Ether in 2017, have dumped their holdings to the market, fearing a larger drop in the short-term.
Where Does Bitcoin go Next?
As Canaccord, Canada’s largest investment firm, said in its report released last week, the first Bitcoin ETF is not likely to be approved by the February 2019 deadline.
Hence, an upward movement supported by the approval of a Bitcoin ETF is highly unlikely in 2018. However, an influx of institutional investors through trusted custodian solutions could create a pathway for billions of dollars in new capital, allowing the market to recover.
Cover Photo by Austin Neill on Unsplash