Bitcoin (BTC) is rapidly nearing a new all-time high, while other major cryptocurrencies are also experiencing substantial increases as a bullish mood surrounds the market after the Tuesday, October 19 launch of a Bitcoin futures exchange-traded funds (ETF).
According to the latest data compiled by Finbold, the top three cryptocurrencies by market capitalization account for 68.73% of the total cryptocurrency market, which as of October 20, 2021, is $2,535,779,511,594 ($2.53 trillion), as per CoinMarketCap.com data. Surprisingly, just 0.02% of all 12,917 coins control almost 70% of the total cryptocurrency market.
It is worth mentioning that Bitcoin now has the largest 47.6% share of the $2.53 trillion market cap. Ethereum ranks second with a share of 17.93%, whereas Binance Coin (BNB) takes the third spot at 3.2%. Cardano (ADA) and Tether (USDT) round out the top five cryptocurrencies with a market share of 2.76% and 2.72%, respectively.
SEC approve Bitcoin futures ETF
Notably, a combination of growing inflation concerns across the world and the recent Bitcoin futures ETF trading on the stock market has contributed to the rise of Bitcoin.
On Friday, October 15, 2021, the flagship asset surpassed the $60,000 mark for the first time since April, sparking a market-wide rise as investors prepared themselves for the introduction of a Bitcoin futures ETF, with the surge first fueled by rumors that emerged prior to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC’s) official announcement.
In fact, ProShares launched the ETF under the ticker BITO on Tuesday, October 19, and as Bitcoin prices neared a new high, the first-ever ETF backed by Bitcoin futures attracted $570 million in assets on its first day of trading.
BTC considered a new hedge against inflation
Due to the fact that Bitcoin futures will allow investors to speculate on the price of Bitcoin without actually buying any of the asset, and since they will be less volatile than investing in the currency directly, the move is expected to result in more investment in digital assets.
In any case, a futures ETF is not the same as a traditional exchange-traded fund, which crypto enthusiasts have been pushing for. A conventional ETF offers investors exposure to the underlying asset, in this case, Bitcoin, while a futures ETF allows investors to speculate on the underlying asset’s price.
Apart from that, investors’ interest in gold ETFs has dwindled by more than 7% since the beginning of 2021, perhaps due to the emergence of gold alternatives like Bitcoin and more ETFs, potentially making it a viable alternative to traditional assets like gold and silver as a store of value.
Increasing BTC expansion
Not to mention an important infrastructural achievement for the flagship digital currency with over 10,000 Bitcoin ATMs installed globally in 2021 as crypto adoption moves closer to mainstream acceptance. In 2021, Bitcoin also found a new use case to the flagship blockchain, launching DeFi on Bitcoin feature for building DeFi application.
As a result, stakeholders in the space are putting in place mechanisms to help facilitate the transition; thus, there is a noticeable increase in the number of ATMs that handle digital currency transactions as demand for assets like Bitcoin grows.
Meanwhile, Frank Holmes, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of investment management company U.S. Global Investors has predicted that Ethereum would be the next cryptocurrency to take off after Bitcoin.
Holmes ascribed his forecast to Ethereum’s growing use cases in the crypto and financial worlds, noting the asset’s smart contract capability likening Ethereum’s increased utility to that of silver.
“It is a smart contract – Ethereum has many more uses than Bitcoin does, the same way silver does…20% of demand for silver is for solar energy. It has a green footprint; viruses can’t live on silver, it has many medical uses. The same thing with Ethereum; it is used for DeFi, for NFTs. It’s a much more important backbone for growth in blockchain,” said Holmes.
Ethereum is currently trading at $3,858.62, up 1.65% on the day and 11.64% over the last week drawing nearer to its all-time high of $4,141.99 it reached back in May.
Indeed, Ethereum seems to be sustaining its gains from 2021 by continuing to produce a large number of new unique addresses on the network, with newly generated addresses in 2021 accounting for 23% of all ever created.
Furthermore, cryptocurrency trading simulator Crypto Parrot’s statistics show that in 2021, an average of 149,843 new Ethereum addresses have been generated per day on a year-to-date basis.
Whatsmore, the recent increase in the price of BNB has painted a potential technical analysis signal on the chart suggesting an upward goal of $500.
In general, it seems that BNB is holding its position within the boundaries of the support and resistance levels, indicating that if the present support zone holds, the price will most likely continue to climb until it reaches the $500 mark.
On this note, cryptocurrency consulting and educational platform Eight Global tweeted:
“$BNB is respecting the support and resistance levels as shown on the chart. If the current support zone keeps holding, the price will likely continue up to ~$500.”
Overall, it appears the news of Binance announcing a $1 billion fund seems to have bolstered investor confidence in the coin, as shown by the sharp increase in demand for BNB, with the currency experiencing substantial gains, jumping almost 20% in less than 24 hours after the announcement.
In addition, the fund is intended to promote greater activity on its Binance Smart Chain (BSC) and the wider blockchain industry. Currently, BNB is trading at $485.61, down 0.77% in the last 24 hours and up 6.45% over the previous seven days, according to CoinMarketCap.com.
To summarize, many trade experts believe that the cryptocurrency market is now trending in a positive direction. The introduction of spot ETFs in line with suitable regulatory frameworks may aid the industry in gaining considerable momentum in the future.
In particular, there are also some comparable futures-based Bitcoin ETFs in development that could be available by the end of the year. At the same time, Grayscale’s Bitcoin trust stated that it intends to turn its fund into a spot ETF, allowing additional investors to get exposure to the crypto industry.