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Cryptocurrency whales are terms used to describe individuals or entities who possess significant amounts of a certain cryptocurrency.
Of note, their holdings are so high that they are able to influence crypto markets through their moves.
Crypto whales often strategically buy and sell portions of their holdings in order to trigger drops and bumps in the price of that crypto.
These can represent individual investors or institutions such as hedge funds and Bitcoin Investment Funds.
The most common association of whales is with Bitcoin. On the Bitcoin network, for example, a small number of these whales are investors who mined large amounts of Bitcoin just after the network was born.
However, many whales on the Bitcoin network are hedge funds that have BTC as part of their holdings.
These kinds of whales are less prone to making buys and sells with the intention of moving the market, though do hold a large amount of market clout.
Crypto Whales Explained
The analogy of a whale is easy to conceptualize, given its large size in a respective ecosystem. A crypto whale also typically engages in trades with significantly more money than the average investor.
In terms of Bitcoin, the largest whales are all investment funds whose total holdings are measured in the hundreds of thousands of BTC.
The largest Bitcoin whales include such funds as Pantera Capital, Bitcoins Reserve, Binary Financial, Coin Capital Partners, Falcon Global Capital, Fortress, Bitcoin Investment Trust, and Global Advisors Bitcoin Investment Fund.
These funds strategically and covertly use Bitcoin through exchanges and out of sight from regular retail traders.
With such a large capital mass of BTC accumulated, any or all of these institutions can in theory move the market at will.