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Bitcoin price today: flat at $67k as analysts await more Fed cues

Published 05/20/2024, 01:21 AM
Updated 05/20/2024, 09:17 AM
© Reuters.
- Bitcoin price moved marginally higher on Monday after rebounding over the weekend, although the token still remained rangebound amid persistent caution over the outlook for U.S. interest rates.

The world’s biggest cryptocurrency moved little in the past 24 hours and steadied at $67,085.1 by 09:13 ET (13:13 GMT). It still remained well within a $60,000 to $70,000 trading range established since mid-March, with few catalysts on tap for an immediate breakout.

Appetite for Bitcoin was also overshadowed by a stellar rally in metal markets. A mix of safe haven demand and long positioning saw gold hit a record high on Monday. 

Bitcoin rangebound with more Fed cues in sight 

Focus this week was squarely on more cues from the Federal Reserve, which are likely to factor into the outlook for interest rates.

The minutes of the Fed’s late-April meeting are due this Wednesday, while a string of Fed officials- chiefly the members of the rate-setting committee- are set to speak this week. 

Any more cues on interest rates will be largely in focus, after some soft inflation readings for April put market focus squarely on a September rate cut. But Fed officials warned that the bank needed more convincing that inflation was easing.

The dollar also steadied from last week’s losses, limiting any major upside in Bitcoin. Fears of potential geopolitical instability in the Middle East, after Iran’s President and foreign minister were killed in a helicopter crash, also kept risk appetite subdued and traders biased towards safe havens such as gold and the dollar. 

This came amid dwindling capital inflows into crypto investment vehicles, as hype over spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds launched earlier this year ran dry.

Crypto price today: altcoins track subdued Bitcoin moves

Most major altcoins also moved in a flat-to-low range on Monday, tracking muted moves in Bitcoin as sentiment remained subdued.

World no.2 token Ethereum rose 0.4% to $3,090.91, while XRP fell 0.3%. Solana rose 5.1%.

Memecoins saw mixed performance, with DOGE and SHIB up 1.2%, while SHIB remained flat.

Altcoins have struggled for traction in recent months as a bulk of crypto capital flows remained biased largely towards Bitcoin. Potential regulatory moves against Ethereum, by the Securities and Exchange Commission, have also dampened appetite for altcoins.

Number of new Bitcoin wallets lowest since 2018

The number of new Bitcoin wallets has plummeted to the lowest level since 2018, pointing to waning interest and reduced activity within the Bitcoin ecosystem.

According to The Block's data, only an average of 275,000 addresses were added to the Bitcoin network each day in the past week, compared to 625,000 six months ago.

Other closely watched metrics have also declined, including miner revenue measured by hash rate, which has hit record lows. Transaction fees and on-chain volume metrics are in the red as well.

Meanwhile, despite the current downturn in on-chain metrics, novel protocols on the Bitcoin network are drawing record levels of interest from venture capital firms, potentially setting the stage for a future resurgence.

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