Data shows the ‘Bitcoin price drops ahead of CME expiries’ claim is a myth

Many traders believe the narrative that Bitcoin price drops ahead of CME BTC futures expiries, but data shows the trend is all bark and no bite.

Historically, activity surrounding the Bitcoin (BTC) monthly futures and options expiry has been blamed for weakening bullish momentum. A few studies from 2019 found a 2.3% average drop in BTC price 40 hours before the CME futures settlement date. 

However, as Cointelegraph reported in June 2020, the effect faded away. While 2020 seems to have rejected the potential negative impact of CME expiries, so far, the current year appears to validate the theory. Bitcoin’s price has been suppressed ahead of futures and options expiry in the first three months of 2021.

Bitcoin performance before and after CME expiry, USD. Source: TradingView

Some investors and traders have pointed out that Bitcoin’s incredible rally after the recent futures and options expiry dates has become a trend.

BTC has effectively rallied in the days following the expiry, but expanding this analysis uncovers a less-than-satisfactory trend.

Three consecutive events don’t prove a trend

The past 13 months have been nothing short of spectacular for Bitcoin, as the cryptocurrency posted 788% gains. August 2020 turned out to be the worst month, as BTC presented a 7.5% negative performance. Thus, choosing random starting points within the month will likely show a similar positive trend.

For example, if one uses the “last quarter” moon phase as a proxy, the odds that a rally takes place after each event are very high.

Bitcoin performance after “Last Quarter” moon, USD. Source: TradingView

As depicted above, indeed, Bitcoin rallied after five out of the last six instances. The only conclusion might be that positive trends are the norm rather than the exception during bull runs.

Although there might be some explanation to the reason behind Bitcoin’s end-of-the-month underperformance, these are only hypotheses.

While market makers and arbitrage desks could benefit from suppressing the price after a rally, other forces, including leverage futures longs and call option holders, would balance that out.

Bitcoin price did not drop in three of the last seven expiries

Therefore, it makes sense to analyze the potential price suppression ahead of the expiry instead of looking for explanations for a rally during a bull market.

Bitcoin performance before and after CME expiry in 2020, USD. Source: TradingView

Both October and December 2020 expiries failed to present any negative pressure ahead of such dates. Meanwhile, the 12% positive performance on the five days that preceded the most recent April 30 expiry also puts a big question mark on how meaningful the CME event really is.

Considering there hasn’t been a price decrease ahead of monthly futures and options expiries in three of the last seven instances, this evidence should put a nail in the coffin of the unfounded myth.

As mentioned earlier, trying to develop theories on why sellers acted more aggressively on specific dates is unlikely to yield results.

As shown above, Bitcoin’s price failed to underperform in three out of the last seven expiries. A 57% success rate should not define a trend when a positive performance after a specific date has been proven common during a bull run.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Crypto industry brass explains harnessing renewable energy could help BTC miners

Bitcoin mining via renewable energy is already prominent, one CEO explains.

The energy consumed by mining — the process that keeps Bitcoin’s blockchain running — has been an increasingly popular topic of discussion in recent weeks.

On Friday, CNBC posted an interview with SUKU CEO Yonathan Lapchik, during which he explained the Bitcoin mining scene as it relates to renewable energy. The interviewer noted Lapchik previously claimed that 75% of Bitcoin mining comes from renewable energy.

“We think that 75% is an actual figure,” Lapchik told CNBC, “The miners are truly incentivized to use renewable energy.” Turning his thoughts to electric car-maker Tesla, which recently announced it would no longer accept Bitcoin for purchases due to environmental concerns, Lapchik said “It’s surprising that Elon didn’t consider that before getting into the space, before accepting Bitcoin as a payment mechanism for Tesla.”

Tesla opened its doors to payments via Bitcoin by United States clientele back in March. The move went public following the car company’s purchase of $1.5 billion worth of BTC, announced in February.

Musk, however, recently stated disapproval of the fossil fuel energy Bitcoin mining calls on, via a Tweet on Wednesday. He also discontinued payments to Tesla in BTC, albeit seemingly a temporary move until Bitcoin mining reaches satisfactory energy usage levels.

“Really the data has been there forever,” Lapchik said of the 75% number. “We’ve been proving over and over and over that that’s a real case for miners in the Bitcoin network.”

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Green energy tokens capitalize on Tesla’s decision to nix Bitcoin payments

Tesla’s decision to cease Bitcoin payments ignited a green energy debate that sent the price of low energy consumption protocols like NANO, HBAR and EWT higher.

After months of touting the benefits of Bitcoin (BTC) and blockchain technology, Tesla CEO Elon Musk shocked the crypto Twitter on May 12 by announcing that the electric car company would suspend its accepting BTC as a form of payment, citing concerns related to the energy required to mine the top cryptocurrency. 

As Tesla issued its statement, Bitcoin, Ether and a large segment of altcoins sold off sharply but there were a few projects that found clever ways to capitalize off the mayhem by tweeting about the ‘green’ nature of their networks that require only a tiny fraction of the energy required to maintain the Bitcoin network.

HBAR/USDT vs. NANO/USDT vs. EWT/USDT 1-hour chart. Source: TradingView

Three of the biggest beneficiaries of the focus on energy consumption are Hedera Hashgraph (HBAR), Nano (NANO) and Energy Web Token (EWT). Each experienced double-digit gains on May 13, while a majority of the cryptocurrency market is in the red.

HBAR/USDT

Hedera Hashgraph is a public network that was designed to be a fairer, more efficient system that seeks to overcome some of the limitations of earlier-generation blockchain platforms that struggle with slow performance and instability.

The network received support from an unlikely source on May 13 as Deepak Chopra, a well-known spiritual teacher and meditation advocate, responded directly to Musk’s tweet about discontinuing Bitcoin payments by discussing the low energy nature of the HBAR.

Further exploration of the project’s Twitter feed show a litany of posts from various community members and project developers displaying the low energy cost of the Hedera network. This activity coincides with the May 13 spike in its price from a low of $0.226 to an intraday high of $0.41.

NANO/USDT

A second protocol that has jumped on the green energy wave initiated is Nano, a lightweight cryptocurrency designed to offer secure, near-instant payments with zero fees.

The project, along with members of its community, was quick to highlight Nano’s status as “one of the leading energy-efficient and eco-friendly cryptocurrencies of 2021” which may have helped propel the tokens price 121% on May 13 from a low of $8.00 to a 3-year high at $17.71.

NANO/USDT 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

EWT/USDT

Energy Web Token is a more obvious beneficiary of the refocus on environmental concerns as it is the operational token behind Energy Web Chain, a blockchain protocol designed to facilitate application development for the energy sector.

While the project doesn’t focus specifically on payments, the protocol’s virtual machine has the potential to revolutionize the energy sector as it is oriented toward grid operators, software developers and vendors.

The project responded to the recent announcement from Musk with the following tweet touting the protocol’s ability to decarbonize the global energy sector.

EWT rallied 75% from a low of $13 late on May 12 to an intraday high at $22 before profit-taking pushed the price back below $18.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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How Coinbase is rethinking its approach to compensation

By L.J. Brock, Chief People Officer

Coinbase is always evolving. In the last year, we’ve grown our headcount by 100%, hired in 6 new countries; committed to being a remote-first company; established Coinbase as a mission focused company; and recently completed our direct listing and became a publicly-traded company. Still, it is incredibly early for crypto as a new technology, and we’re in it for the long-haul. That’s why we take extraordinary measures to attract top talent to come build with us.

It’s actually one of our most important values as a company: top talent in every seat. Upholding it requires us to constantly revisit our compensation practices to ensure we’re competitive in the marketplace, an attractive employer for candidates, and that our compensation practices reinforce the culture we want to build. Evolving compensation is not just about appealing to candidates, though; it’s also about taking a hard look at industry norms and innovating to relieve pain points, ensure more equity across the workforce, and improve transparency. So what are we doing?

Step 1: Increasing our compensation targets

Ensuring top talent in every seat requires an investment. In 2019, we made the decision to benchmark ourselves across a highly competitive set of peers and some of the largest tech companies in the world. This was an aggressive move for us at the time, as a small, private start-up. This year we’ve continued our commitment to top talent by further increasing our cash and equity compensation — from the 50th percentile amongst our peers to the 75th — across the entire company.

Step 2: Eliminating negotiations from the hiring process

Because our standard offers are world-class, we are officially eliminating negotiations on salary and equity from our recruiting process.

Anyone who wants to work in crypto belongs and is valued at Coinbase. It doesn’t matter what your background is, where you went to school (or bootcamp), where you’ve worked before, or even what you’ve been paid before. If you pass our bar and are hired to do the same work, you get the same offer as the next candidate for a role.

Traditionally people expect they need to negotiate for the best package after being hired in a new job. Those that do this well tend to be rewarded, and those that don’t lose out. These negotiations can disproportionately leave women and underrepresented minorities behind, and a disparity created early in someone’s career can follow them for decades. We want to do everything we can to ensure that’s not the experience at Coinbase. All employees in the same position, in the same location, receive the same salary and equity offer. No exceptions.

Eliminating negotiations doesn’t mean all employees are paid the same after they begin working. In fact, we want compensation differentiation, but it should be solely driven by demonstrated performance and outsized impact on our company and for our customers. We will continue to apply multipliers to our equity and cash rewards for high performers identified through our rigorous performance management process. This way, our high performers receive compensation commensurate with their impact, in addition to accelerated career development and a front row seat to building the cryptoeconomy.

We are OK if we lose some candidates due to this decision — the best candidates for Coinbase are those who are looking for a highly competitive package and are ready to let their contributions speak for themselves.

Step 3: Adopting annual equity grants that drive predictable, real time compensation

Another goal of our new compensation program is to manage volatility and provide as much predictability for our employees as possible. Crypto has historically been volatile, and it’s a reasonable assumption that our stock price may be, too. As we grow, we anticipate more candidates will value predictability in their annual compensation. Instead of a four-year new hire grant (standard at many tech companies), employees will receive annual grants, sized at one-year targets that vest in their entirety each year. An employee’s multi-year equity compensation will no longer be dictated by our company valuation at a single point in time.

Some may say eliminating 4-year new hire grants could hurt retention; we disagree. We don’t want employees to feel locked in at Coinbase based on grants awarded 3 or 4 years prior. We want to earn our employees’ commitment every year and, likewise, expect them to earn their seat at Coinbase.

We are also eliminating the one-year cliff from our new hire grants. We expect new hires to add value on their first day, so it only makes sense for them to start vesting rewards for their contributions.

We also plan to make these annual grants for all employees together at one time, using one share price. This is designed to minimize disparate outcomes that can persist for years after one’s start date. This is another way we are ensuring pay differences are due only to demonstrated performance. Everyone will have the same incentive to add value and grow our company together, which is important for our culture.

These are significant changes, but ones we believe will help us achieve our ambitious goals in this next phase of growth. We are still early in rolling out this program and, like so many things at Coinbase, we’ll assess, understand and iterate on it over time. But we believe it aligns our compensation philosophy with the culture we want to build, and we can’t wait to see what it enables.

If this excites you, please apply to join the team here.


How Coinbase is rethinking its approach to compensation was originally published in The Coinbase Blog on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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EOS and YFI lead altcoins higher as Bitcoin and Ether bounce from swing lows

YFI, EOS and REV notched double-digit rallies as altcoins capitalized on the oversold bounce in Bitcoin and Ethereum price.

The markets were mixed on May 11 as Bitcoin (BTC) recovered from Monday’s drop to $53,000 by bouncing to $56,862 but the digital asset is still finding resistance at the $57,000 level.

Ether (ETH) also worked its way back above $4,100 but according to Cointelegraph analyst Marcel Pechman, the bullish sentiment for Ether seen in recent weeks has begun to fade as traders question whether new all-time highs will be sustainable in the short term.

Data from Cointelegraph Markets and TradingView shows that Bitcoin bulls defended a late-night sell-off on May 10 that briefly dropped the price of BTC below $54,000 before dip buyers gobbled up sell orders and lifted the price back above $56,000.

BTC/USDT 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

blue-chipWhile the blue chip cryptocurrencies have been stuck in a sideways market, canine-themed meme coins including Shiba Inu (SHIB) and Dogelon Mars (ELON) have followed Dogecoin’s (DOGE) lead and seen their prices explode for triple-digit gains.

Ethereum bulls take a brief breather

Bitcoin’s range-bound trading between $50,000 and $60,000 in recent weeks can partially be attributed to the rising price of Ether, which has caught the attention of institutional investors looking for exposure to more than just BTC. The growing demand for Ether can clearly be seen in the price action of the ETH/BTC pair.

ETH/BTC 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

According to David Lifchitz, managing partner and chief investment officer at ExoAlpha, Ether’s recent all-time high was in part due to a “continued rotation away from Bitcoin” which helped push the price of Ether “as high as $4,214 before suddenly puking down to $3,658 (-13% in an hour).”

The downturn in the crypto market coincided with a selloff in the U.S. equity markets that hit the tech-heavy NASDAQ index especially hard. Lifchitz noted that Bitcoin and the other cryptocurrencies were eventually able to “bounce back half of the loss from the high.”

While the sell-off “could be explained by some correlation trades leading to a quick profit-taking in cryptos”, Lifchitz also pointed to the possibility of a more organized selloff where some traders took advantage of frothy market conditions.

Lifchitz said:

“It could also have been an organized selloff as Ethereum was at its ATH after a torrid ride (i.e. ETH was vulnerable to a quick drop) in order to spook the weak hands and shake them off, triggering a cascading selling effect, before buying back ETH on the cheap as shown by the even higher volume to buy right after the selloff.”

Lifchitz highlighted that just:

“Twenty-four hours later, Bitcoin is back in the middle of its twilight zone ($50,000 to $60,000) and Ether is slowly grinding higher above $4K. So all in all, it was just an ordinary day in crypto land.”

Further insight into the market moves over the past week was offered by Ben Lilly, co-founder and analyst at Jarvis Labs, who highlighted an increase in on-chain profit taking over the last week that had “lots of capital turning over throughout altcoins.”

Lilly said:

“As capital made its way from coin to coin, profits were being realized as Bitcoin traded sideways. What we saw on May 10 was the end of this phase.”

Altcoins lead the market higher

The overall altcoin market shook off the bearish moves seen in the larger-cap cryptocurrencies. EOS led the day with a 50% jump which took the price to $13.92  after Block.one announced that it had secured $10 billion in funding to launch an EOS-based cryptocurrency exchange named Bullish Global.

Daily cryptocurrency market performance. Source: Coin360

Yearn.finance (YFI) managed to break out of the trading range it had been stuck in to put on a 58% rally to a new record high above $80,000, while the price of Revain (REV) exploded 130% to reach a multi-year high at $0.049.

The overall cryptocurrency market cap now stands at $2.474 trillion and Bitcoin’s dominance rate is 42.8%.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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