Bitcoin has topped $30,000 for the first time time since June, reaching its highest level in 10 months, as open interest on the CME exchange increased after a holiday weekend.
The largest cryptocurrency rose 4% to $30,264 as of 3:13 p.m. in New York Tuesday after jumping by nearly as much on Monday, according to Messari.
The recent move seems to be caused by CME derivatives traders’ bitcoin exposure following an Easter hiatus, according to crypto analytics provider K33 Research. “Increased activity on CME before and during yesterday’s initial spike towards $29,000 suggests that CME traders were behind the initial push higher.” Binance traders “unwillingly” followed above $30,000 in a possible short squeeze, the firm’s analysts wrote in a Tuesday research report.
The token has weathered the recent spate banking turmoil well, rising over 44% since the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank on March 10.
Ether, the No. 2 cryptocurrency, advanced 1% to $1,906. Investors are bracing for potential selling pressure as the Shanghai (Shapella) upgrade to the Ethereum blockchain, scheduled to go live Wednesday, will enable some participants to withdraw funds that have been frozen for months as part of the network’s migration to proof-of-stake rather than proof-of-work validation technology.
Wednesday will also see the release of U.S. core consumer price index and minutes of the Federal Reserve’s March 21-22 meeting, which may influence investor outlooks for interest-rate developments, potentially affecting crypto trading.
Crypto market capitalization rose 2.7% on a 24-hour basis to $1.26 trillion. Among the leaders is Solana’s sol, up 14%. The swift rise may point to the excitement around the release of Saga, an Android smartphone with special Solana blockchain integrations, planned for April 13.
Xrp, which rallied nearly 40% in the past month outperforming other cryptocurrencies, added a modest 1.08% and is now trading at 52 cents. According to an analysis by data provider Kaiko, the rally was driven primarily by retail investors. Traders may be positioning themselves for a victory by Ripple, a company closely associated with the token, in its multi-year court battle against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which accuses it of of selling xrp as an unregistered security.
Crypto equities are also on the rise. Stocks of miners Marathon Digital Holdings, Riot Platforms, Hut 8 Mining are up 28.8%, 33.7% and 17.3%, respectively, since Thursday’s close.
Major bitcoin buyer MicroStrategy’s shares leaped 6% on Tuesday. The software seller has recently purchased about 1,045 bitcoins for approximately $29.3 million, increasing its total tally to 140,000, bought at an average price of $29,803 per coin. As the leading cryptocurrency soared past $30,000, the company’s $4 billion bitcoin stash returned to profitability.
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