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Are Bitcoin short-term holders responsible for current market downturn

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Bitcoin’s [BTC] decline to the $18,500 price region marked the second-lowest low of the bear cycle. As per Glassnode‘s latest report, 11.8% of the coin’s supply has been turned into an unrealized loss. 

Furthermore, in the last week, the price per BTC rallied from the second lowest low of the current bear market ($18,649) to peak at $21,758. Prices, however, remained within the consolidation range, which Glassnode noted has been so intact for over three months. 

Short-term holders seeing losses

BTC’s price touched the lower ends of the consolidation range in the last week. Glassnode considered the volume of coins held at an unrealized profit at the high of $24,500, which turned into an unrealized loss. 

A look at the Market Value Realized Value for short-term holders (STH-MVRV) revealed worrying data. The values recorded in the current bear cycle have been lower than those recorded during the December 2018 BTC market capitulation.

This, according to Glassnode, indicated that BTC short-term holders currently experience a “historically large degree of financial pain.” 

The report noted further that since the middle of August, the total percent supply in loss rallied by 11.8%, to be pegged at 48.1%. Glassnode further found that the contribution of short-term holders has been significantly higher than that of long-term holders.

This, according to Glassnode, suggests “capitulation” amongst short-term holders in the market. This can also be a corresponding demand inflow when the price of BTC oscillated between $24,000 and $18,500 last week. 

It added further that the difference in the contribution of short-term holders and that of long-term holders indicates a risk. This being “that a large volume of investor coins (48.1% of supply) are underwater below $18.5k. Additionally, 11.8% of supply has a cost basis between $18.5k and $24.5k.”

Source: Glassnode

Furthermore, Glassnode measured the profitability of BTC short-term holders by considering the Short-Term Holder Spent Output Profit Ratio (STH SOPR). This indicator is used to assess the behavior and profitability of investors who are more likely to have recently entered the market.

In its report, Glassnode found that during the market’s rejection of the $24,000 price mark, the STH SOPR stood equivalent to a value of one. This indicated that short-term holders sold their BTCs at a cost basis.

Source: Glassnode

Holding for the long run no more

The current market situation is primarily determined by short-term holders. These holders are “jostling for the best entry price, and what little profit is available to take.”

However, unlike this category of holders who influence the market in the near term, long-term BTC holders may stand in deep waters. Long-term holders “have experienced a significant wash-out already” and are more inclined toward leaving their coins dormant.


Abiodun is a freelancer writer working with AMBCrypto. He is also a lawyer with over 2 years of experience. With a keen interest in blockchain technology and its limitless possibilities, Abiodun spends his time understanding the technology, building projects, and educating people about it.
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