Record $2.3B in Bitcoin ETF Trades as BTC Rockets to $49K, Then Plummets Below $46K

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At 11 a.m. Eastern Time (ET) on Jan. 11, 2024, the newly launched spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) boasted a remarkable trading volume of $2.3 billion. However, in a dramatic turn of events later that afternoon, bitcoin’s spot markets experienced a steep decline, with prices falling below the $46,000 mark following a short-lived ascent to $49,000.

Bitcoin Reaches $49K High Before Dropping, as ETFs Record $2.3B in Trades by Mid-Day

Earlier in the day, at approximately 9 a.m. (ET), bitcoin (BTC) reached a peak value of $49,048 on Bitstamp. This surge to the $49K level was short-lived, as BTC’s value plummeted, dropping beneath the $46K barrier to a low of $45,700 per unit. Shortly after 11 a.m. (ET), Bloomberg’s Senior ETF Analyst, Eric Balchunas, revealed that the new spot bitcoin ETFs, along with Grayscale’s GBTC, had collectively reached a trading volume of $2.3 billion.

“The 10 fresh spot bitcoin ETFs have seen $1.3b in trading volume so far (as a group they already topped BITO’s record). If we add in GBTC we get to $2.3 [billion],” Balchunas said. “And if we add in BITO (which is having record day too but isn’t part of ‘spot’ race) we get $3.5b for the complex,” he added. Since then, BTC’s spot market price has been an absolute rollercoaster ride.

The commencement of trading likely triggered an initial surge in demand, followed by a wave of short-term profit-taking, a typical pattern observed after such significant market events. Bitcoin’s 24-hour trading volume stands at an impressive $57.45 billion, contributing to the total $192.48 billion traded across the entire cryptocurrency ecosystem. This rapid surge and subsequent drop resulted in significant liquidations of BTC long positions, with $53.58 million being wiped out in just four hours.

In the past 24 hours, over $119 million in BTC longs were also liquidated, as reported by’s liquidation metrics. The introduction of spot bitcoin ETFs has injected short-term volatility into the market.

This volatility leads to larger price swings, signaling increased uncertainty and risk in the crypto market. Such fluctuations are not unusual following major announcements on Wall Street, as markets adapt to new information and investors recalibrate their portfolios. Currently, the total open interest in bitcoin options is on an upward trajectory, having reached its peak at the close of December 2023.

In a parallel development, the total open interest in bitcoin futures is also experiencing a resurgence. CME Group is leading the pack in terms of bitcoin futures open interest with $6.59 billion in contrast to the open interest on Binance, which stands at $4.53 billion on Thursday afternoon at 1:30 p.m. (ET).

What do you think about bitcoin’s market action on Thursday when the spot bitcoin ETFs started trading? Share your thoughts and opinions about this subject in the comments section below.

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