Cole Petersen · 8 hours ago · 2 min read · Insights via Alex Krüger
Over the past 24 hours, the market experienced high levels of volatility. This could be related to one of the largest Ponzi schemes in the history of the cryptocurrency industry.
PlusToken moves a large amount of Ethereum
On Wednesday, Ethereum experienced a massive upswing. After hitting a low of $116.70, Ether quickly recovered surging over 15 percent. The sudden $18 jump got Ether to test a key resistance level. The price barrier was able to contain ETH from advancing further.
As Ethereum was peaking at around $135, Whale Alert, a web bot that tracks large crypto transactions, reported a transaction carrying nearly 790,000 ETH, worth over $105 million. The transfer originated from an address belonging to PlusToken. This is regarded as one of the largest Pozi schemes that the cryptocurrency market has ever seen.
Interestingly enough, Matthew Graham, the CEO of Sino Global Capital, shared a bizarre video in which someone allegedly connected to PlusToken explains the transfer and frames it as “good news.” Although the reason behind this transaction is unknown, many argue that it could lead to market manipulation.
Plustoken scammers trying to explain away their token transactions, the brazenness is really incredible (Mandarin video) pic.twitter.com/upFE4MDnBr
— Matthew Graham (@mg0314a) December 19, 2019
In November, CryptoSlate reported that a single PlusToken address had liquidated more than 22,000 BTC, approximately over 1,100 BTC per day. According to Travis Kling, the founder and chief investment officer of Ikigai Asset, this could be the main factor preventing the market from reaching higher highs despite the “exceedingly bullish macro backdrop.”
Along the same lines, Chainalysis recently published a report claiming that the PusToken scammers could be driving the market down. The blockchain analytics firm was able to track the ETH that went from scam victims to PlusToken wallets. The on-chain analysis determined that PlusToken received roughly 6.4 million Ether.
Even though some of those funds were paid out to early investors, Chainalysis maintains that at least 800,000 ETH were kept by the scammers.
“We’ve tracked roughly 800,000 ETH and 45,000 BTC we can definitively say the scammers transferred to their own addresses to launder. They’ve cashed out at least 10,000 of that initial 800,000 ETH, while the other 790,000 has been sitting untouched in a single Ethereum wallet for months.”
Now that the funds are moving, it remains to be seen if the perpetrators of the PlusToken scam will flood the market with stolen ETH. Consequently, pushing its price further down.