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Institutional Bitcoin Accumulation Phase Likely Complete: Analysis

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • CryptoQuant suggests that institutional Bitcoin accumulation may have concluded last year, contributing to current market inactivity.
  • The lack of large OTC transactions during Bitcoin's price doubling since November 2022 suggests institutions have completed their accumulation.
  • Bitcoin velocity patterns indicate a lot of BTC was traded and accumulated a year ago, with the metric declining since the mid-2022 institutional accumulation phase.
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The accumulation of Bitcoin by institutional investors and entities may have already taken place last year according to findings by on-chain analytics. Moreover, markets have remained inactive over the weekend as the consolidation continues. 

According to CryptoQuant, there is a possibility that major institutional investors have completed their Bitcoin accumulation.

Bitcoin Accumulation Slowing

On Aug. 14, on-chain analytics provider CryptoQuant provided an update on the BTC accumulation situation. 

Analysts noted that it was possible that the completion of institutional accumulation of BTC occurred during the two major crashes in 2022. These were the Terra/Luna ecosystem in May and FTX in November. 

The ‘token transferred’ metric shows whale transactions all occurred at or near cycle bottoms. 

However, there was no sign of these large OTC transactions during Bitcoin’s price doubling since the last cycle bottom in November 2022. This may be because institutional investors have “already completed their BTC accumulation, eliminating the need for additional trades,” according to the analyst. 

Furthermore, the fifth-largest volume in history occurred in mid-June 2022 after the Luna collapse. 

BTC Transferred. Source: CryptoQuant
BTC Transferred. Source: CryptoQuant

Bitcoin velocity patterns also reinforce the premise that a lot of BTC was traded and accumulated a year ago.

Furthermore, this metric has declined since the institutional accumulation phase in mid-2022. 

BTC velocity. Source: CryptoQuant
BTC Velocity. Source: CryptoQuant

CryptoQuant concluded that the current lulls in activity could be a precursor to renewed upward momentum: 

“In conclusion, $15,700, the low created after institutions mass-bought, seems to be the lowest point in this cycle, and if ‘Token Transferred’ and ‘Velocity speed’ increase along with price increases in the future, this is likely a precursor to an upward rally.”

BTC Price Outlook 

Bitcoin prices have done very little over the weekend, hovering around the $29,400 level. There was a slight dip to $29,143 during the Monday morning Asian trading session, but the asset quickly rebounded.

BTC Price in USD 24 hours. Source: BeInCrypto 
BTC Price in USD 24 hours. Source: BeInCrypto 

BTC was trading at $29,402 at the time of writing, with no change from the same time yesterday.

Furthermore, aside from a rejection of $30,000 on Aug. 9, Bitcoin has traded at this level for the past three weeks.

Volume and volatility have totally dried up, marking one of the quietest periods in crypto market history. If the institutions have already accumulated, the market lethargy could continue for a while yet. 

Top crypto platforms in the US | February 2024



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Martin Young
Martin Young is a seasoned cryptocurrency journalist and editor with over 7 years of experience covering the latest news and trends in the digital asset space. He is passionate about making complex blockchain, fintech, and macroeconomics concepts understandable for mainstream audiences.   Martin has been featured in top finance, technology, and crypto publications including BeInCrypto, CoinTelegraph, NewsBTC, FX Empire, and Asia Times. His articles provide an in-depth analysis of...