Bitcoin’s price (BTC/USD) has gradually climbed to its highest point in over two weeks, reaching $233.86 on Bitstamp.
It has been a highly uneventful two months of trading for bitcoin. Since bottoming at $210 during early April’s volatility, it has not deviated by more than 6.5% of its mid-range level of $230 in either direction. The 2-month+ stretch is among the longest and flattest in bitcoin’s history, and in contrast with its historical reputation as a highly volatile asset, it has recently been more stable than a good number of equities, commodities and fiat currency pairs.
Bitcoin has climbed back up to meet its 50-day moving average (MA), which it had trailed since falling to $220, the lower edge of its trading band, earlier this month. The recent streak of stability has kept prices within close range of the MA for the majority of 2015.
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Bitcoin’s fundamental value is still an unknown science. One would expect that its historical volatility continue until at least meaningful fundamental changes set in, and it would appear that this has not yet happened.
From a “technical-fundamental” perspective, however, there is an increasing “institutionalization” of bitcoin trading. Publicly traded bitcoin instruments have been launched, such as Bitcoin Investment Trust (BIT) and Bitcoin Tracker One. The New York Stock Exchange’s introduction of a robust index offers an institutional-grade view into the market in tracking activity on Coinbase’s exchange, which has been gradually snapping up market share to become one of the top USD-based venues by volume.
Bitcoin’s increasing infiltration into the institutional sphere has likely been greeted with a more structured, disciplined trading environment, in contrast with its youthful days in the Wild West where online traders speculated its next move “to the moon”. However, the added stability may not preclude a more gradual decline if investors start failing to see fundamental value.
Litecoin spiked by 16% to as high as $2.10 on BTC-e, its highest level since late January. The jump- its second of such scale in as many months- transpired in less than 24 hours. In vastly outpacing bitcoin’s gains, the LTC/BTC rate is challenging 2015 highs at 0.0087.