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Michael Saylor and Coinbase Insiders Are Selling Stock: Is a Crypto Correction Imminent?

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • MicroStrategy executive chairman Michael Saylor has started selling company stock, hinting at a possible market correction.
  • Saylor plans to sell 315,000 shares worth around $216 million, but intends to use the proceeds to buy more personal Bitcoin.
  • Coinbase insiders have also been reportedly offloading company stock, leading to a 16% drop in COIN prices since the sales began.
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Bitcoin markets have held on to their gains so far into the new year. However, some of the bigger players in the industry could be selling related stocks, which suggests a higher potential for a market correction.

According to a January 2 filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, MicroStrategy executive chairman Michael Saylor has started selling company stock. However, he has previously said that proceeds from the sales would go towards buying more Bitcoin. 

Saylor Exercising Stock Options 

Michael Saylor has engaged with the regulator to exercise MicroStrategy stock options. According to the filing, he will sell 315,000 shares worth around $216 million.

In a fourth-quarter conference call, Saylor explained that he was granted a stock option in 2014 for 400,000 shares. This will expire in April if he doesn’t exercise it by then, he added. 

“For almost a decade now, at my request, the company has only paid me a $1 salary and I have chosen not to be eligible for any cash bonuses,”

Exercising this option will enable him to address financial obligations “as well as to acquire additional Bitcoin for my personal account,” he said. 

Saylor will sell 5,000 shares each trading day beginning on January 2 and ending on April 25. He said he would still have a “very significant” equity stake in the company even after the sales. 

In late December, Saylor said the potential approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF may be the biggest Wall Street development in 30 years.

Read more: Empower your investments with BTC price predictions

According to “Insider Tracker,” which tracks the stock trades of CEOs, executives, and congress members, Coinbase insiders have also been offloading company stock.

Furthermore, COIN prices have dropped 16% since the sales began, it reported. It has declined 10% since the beginning of trading this year, falling to $157 after hours on January 2. 

COIN price on insider trading. Source: X/@TrackInsiders_
COIN price on insider trading. Source: X/@TrackInsiders_

Stock Cooldown Predicted 

Moreover, investment strategists are predicting a stock market cooldown 

“It’s not uncommon for markets to pause to digest a bull run of the magnitude experienced in the fourth quarter just ended,” John Stoltzfus, chief investment strategist and managing director at Oppenheimer, wrote in a note to clients on January 2. 

A correction in US stock markets is likely to be mirrored by crypto markets. However, they have remained flat on the day at $1.81 trillion, with BTC holding steady at $45,216 at the time of writing. 

Additionally, several technical indicators, including the Puell Multiple, have signaled over-bought conditions, which could be a sign of a pullback.

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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...