Bitcoin is finishing the month with its best month since a 40% rally in October 2021, and its best January since 2013.
Bitcoin (BTC-USD) is currently trading at its highest level since August of last year, changing hands at $22,910. The largest cryptocurrency hasn’t had a more upbeat January in a decade.
“We started January off with some explosive price action the week of December’s CPI print,” said Christopher Newhouse, options trader with crypto market maker GSR.
According to Newhouse, buyer-side demand from institutional takers — whether macro-driven traders or hedge funds — returned in the first two weeks of the month, resulting in initial short-seller liquidations.
According to crypto derivatives aggregator CoinGlass, in the 12 days following December’s inflation report, which was released on Jan. 12, $1.3 billion in short positions on bitcoin were liquidated, or $611 million net of long positions.
The trend has shifted in the last week, with $331 million in long positions liquidated, or $108 million net of short positions.
Between January 10 and 20, when bitcoin experienced its largest gains, speculation-driven momentum traders returned to the market, propelling bitcoin out of a range of $15,700 to $18,000.
“Bitcoin’s pushes above $20,000 and $22,000 both happened on Fridays as dealers had large amounts of negative exposure and selling towards the end of U.S. hours trading,” Newhouse noted.
Analysts believe bitcoin’s next level will be determined in the days following the Federal Reserve’s monthly rate hike decision.
“This market is going to start to trade very technically. Volatility is coming back,” Edward Moya, a senior analyst at Oanda said, according to Yahoo Finance.
According to Michael Safai, co-founder and partner at crypto trading firm Dexterity Capital, the return of bitcoin buying looks similar to what occurred from July to early August.
“It takes about two months or so for the crypto market to stabilize after a major shock, and we’re at that point post-FTX,” Safai said over email.
“The worst of the damage has been inflicted, investors are relatively confident that there are no more shoes to drop, as reflected in the muted reception to the Genesis bankruptcy, and risk appetite is starting to slowly return.”
According to Coinmarketcap, the total market capitalization of cryptocurrencies is up 24% year to date to $1.05 trillion.
According to crypto indexing platform Nomics, the global crypto volume has risen to $5.5 trillion across spot exchanges worldwide, a 61% increase since the beginning of the year.
According to data collected by blockchain analytics platform Glassnode, the current market rally has pushed buyers of the largest cryptocurrency from 2019 and earlier back above breakeven.