Cryptocurrency Market Treads Water in Anticipation of Bitcoin’s Next Breakout

Cryptocurrencies traded marginally lower on Monday, as bitcoin, the market’s chief bellwether, awaited its next major breakout. According to the technical charts, the bitcoin price is poised to continue higher in the short term, though damaged investor psychology could undermine those efforts.

Market Update

The combined value of all cryptocurrencies in circulation reached $213.3 billion, according to CoinMarketCap. The market is little changed compared with 24 hours ago and is roughly $5 billion lower than the intraday peak.

Trade volumes continued to hover in the $11-$12 billion range after briefly surpassing $16 billion on Saturday.

Most major assets in the top-ten were trading lower, with losses ranging from 1.6% to 3.9%.

Bitcoin traded within a $140 range on Bitfinex, eventually settling at $6,450. BTC is little changed for the day.

The bitcoin price is showing signs of stabilizing after last week’s modest recovery, which saw prices bounced from $5,860 toward $6,600.

 At current values, bitcoin accounts for 52.2% of the total cryptocurrency market. Therefore, its next move will have major implications on altcoins and tokens.

Bitcoin ETF Talk

The cryptocurrency market is still reeling from the SEC’s non-decision on a highly touted bitcoin exchange-traded fund. As Hacked reported nearly two weeks ago, the Securities and Exchange Commission delayed its ruling until Sept. 30 in order to weigh thousands of public comments on the matter. For many, the agency’s forthcoming decision could make or break the market – at least, in the short term.

The asset in question is the CBOE-backed VanEck SolidX Bitcoin ETF. According to the application, VanEck and SolidX are proposing a fund backed by physical bitcoin with an insurance component to protect investors against operational risks associated with sourcing and holding the digital asset. Naturally, investors are excited about the fund’s potential and believe it solves many of the SEC’s concerns around safety and price manipulation.

However, the consensus among analysts is that approval is too premature at this stage. For starters, the SEC has yet to fully grasp the implications of a bitcoin ETF. As a matter of fact, the agency only recently deemed bitcoin to be a non-security. According to analysts, the SEC is likely to delay its ruling until next year as the agency investigates the matter further.

Fixation on the ETF narrative ignores the myriad of positive developments concerning crypto custody and the recently announced Bakkt initiative, which aims to bring cryptocurrencies to mainstream investors and consumers.

Bakkt, which was announced last month, is a new startup funded by Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), Microsoft, Starbucks and Boston Consulting Group (BCG), among others.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to and Contributor to, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi