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What short squeeze? Here’s what is really behind XRP’s recent 170% rally

These key metrics show there’s more to the recent Dogecoin and XRP pumps than just short-seller liquidations.

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Between Jan. 30 and the early hours of Feb. 1, XRP price pumped 147%, reaching $0.76 which is its highest level in two months. The move seems to have been fueled by r/Satoshistreetbets, an off-shoot of r/Wallstreetbets.

It seems that speculative social media group-based investing is becoming a trend so let’s take a look at what triggers might have catalyzed the recent surge in XRP price.

XRP Twitter activity vs. Price. Source: TheTie

Data from TheTie, an alternative data provider focused on social analytics, shows just how significant the impact of active Twitter users has been on XRP price.

Even Gene Simmons, the legendary musician from the rock band, KISS, told his nearly 900,000 followers:

“Not recommending any of these to anyone. But yes, I also bought Dogecoin, XRP, and others. Make of it what you will.”Was there short interest behind this move?

Knowing exactly what triggered the investors to crowd into XRP could uncover a set of criteria that may apply to other cryptocurrencies.

Hedge funds with sizeable short positions are what drew investors to GameStop and AMC stock. By coordinating a pump on these companies, buyers knew that would force short sellers to be liquidated and trigger the start of a strong rally.

Taking a look at Bitfinex’s long-to-short ratio shows that there’s currently $124 million total margin trades combining its USD and BTC based markets. Although that figure is up from $95 million a month ago, it’s more important to focus on the percentage favoring shorts.

XRP Longs vs. Shorts. Source: Bitfinex

The ratio seen on Jan. 29 favored longs by 180%, and this is the opposite of what’s necessary for a short squeeze. Moreover, in nominal terms, those $25 million margin shorts were not significant to XRP’s $1.55 billion average daily volume.

On the other hand, futures markets held a $277 million open interest, which is flat from the previous month. But unlike margin markets, buyers and sellers are matched at all times.

XRP aggregate futures open interest. Source: Bybt.com

As depicted above, despite the liquidations caused by the recent 147% rally, XRP’s open interest surged in nominal terms due to its price appreciation. To understand whether those traders had been using excess leverage on either side, one should focus on the futures contracts funding rate.

When sellers (shorts) are the ones demanding more leverage, the funding rate goes negative. Therefore, those traders will be the ones paying up the fees.

XRP aggregate futures open interest. Source: Bybt.com

As shown above, buyers had been using more leverage. Albeit relatively steady over the past 30 days, the last time negative funding rates occurred was Dec. 24 and Dec. 29. Both dates mark local lows after substantial price corrections caused by the SEC lawsuit against XRP.

Therefore, it is safe to assume that r/Satoshibets did not pick XRP based on margin shorts nor futures leveraged trades.

Apart from being a sub-$10 coin, XRP was one of the most distant from its all-time high. It’s also important to consider that before its recent 1,000% pump, Dogecoin (DOGE) was also trading 90% below its $0.078 all-time high.

Sub-$10 coins. Source: Livecoinwatch.com

While it is indisputable that social investing groups have played some role in the recent rallies seen from Dogecoin, XRP, GameStop and AMC, the data do not validify the narrative that r/Satoshistreetbets chose to pump XRP because of the high level of shorts on the altcoin.

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.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/what-short-squeeze-here-s-what-is-really-behind-xrp-s-recent-170-rally

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Cointelegraph

Here’s how Bitcoin’s intraday volatility complicates leverage trading

Derivatives exchanges offer up to 100x leverage, but traders must consider how Bitcoin’s intraday volatility increases their liquidation risk.

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The crypto sector is in a bull market, and frequent evidence comes from anonymous traders who post their five-, six- and seven-figure investment returns as screenshots on Crypto Twitter.

This condition creates a FOMO-like situation where everyone gets greedy. The temptation to boost potential earnings by twenty times or more is often irresistible for most novice traders.

Today, almost every cryptocurrency exchange offers leveraged trading using derivatives. To enter these markets, a trader has to first deposit collateral (margin), which is usually a stablecoin or Bitcoin (BTC). However, unlike spot (regular) trading, the trader cannot withdraw from a futures market position until it has been closed.

These instruments have benefits and can improve a trader’s outcomes. However, those who often rely on incorrect information when trading futures contracts end up with heavy losses rather than profits.

The basics of derivatives

These leveraged futures contracts are synthetic, and it is even possible to short or place a bet on the downside. Leverage is the most appealing aspect of futures contracts, but it is worth noting that these instruments have long been used in stock markets, commodities, indexes, and foreign exchange (FX).

In traditional finance, traders measure daily price change by calculating the average closing price changes. This measure is widely used in every asset class, and it’s called volatility. However, for various reasons, this metric isn’t helpful for cryptocurrencies and can harm leverage traders.

Bitcoin 60-day USD volatility. Source: BuyBitcoinWorldwide

To be brief, the higher the volatility, the more often an asset price presents wild oscillations. Contrary to the expectation, moving up by 7% to 10% every day represents a low volatility indicator. This happens because the deviation from the mean is small, while random fluctuations between a negative 3% to a positive 3% present a much wider range.

Markets with very low volatility are perfect for leverage

Knowing the general range of how an asset oscillates is extremely important when opening leverage positions. Take the British Pound Sterling (GBP), for example, and one will notice that its volatility is usually below 1% as surprise aggressive daily price changes are unusual.

GBP currency 60-day USD volatility. Source: BuyBitcoinWorldwide

FX markets are relatively stable markets when compared with stocks and commodities. Therefore, some regulated brokers offer even 200x leverage, meaning a 0.5% move against the position would cause a forced liquidation.

For a cryptocurrency trader, the Swiss Franc’s (CHF) daily change versus the U.S. dollar would likely be seen as a stablecoin.

Swiss Franc (CHF) USD prices. Source: Investing.com

However, the 3.4% daily Bitcoin volatility hides a more dangerous price fluctuation. While measuring daily closing prices for traditional markets makes sense, cryptocurrencies trade non-stop. This difference potentially creates much wider movements within the same day, although the daily closing often masquerades it.

Bitcoin price low-high-close USD prices. Source: CoinMarketCap

The average change between the Bitcoin intraday high and low of the past 180 days is 6.5%. As shown above, these ‘intraday moves’ surpassed 10% on 25 occasions. Meaning, in reality, BTC price oscillations are much larger than expected for a 3.2% daily volatility asset.

20x leverage seems crazy considering Bitcoin’s daily moves

To put things into perspective, a 5% move in the wrong direction is enough to liquidate any 20x leveraged Bitcoin position. This data is clear evidence that traders should really consider risk and volatility when leverage-trading cryptocurrencies.

Fast profits are nice, but what is more important is being able to survive the usual daily price swings to hold on to those unrealized gains.

Although there’s not a magical number to set the best leverage for every trader, one must account for the effect of volatility when calculating liquidation risks. Those aiming to keep positions open for more than a couple of days, aiming for 15x or lower leverage, seem to be ‘reasonable.’

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.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/here-s-how-bitcoin-s-intraday-volatility-complicates-leverage-trading

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Polkadot-centric derivatives exchange raises $6.4M in seed funding

The successful private investment round highlights growing conviction in the Polkadot ecosystem.

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DTrade is planning to build the first derivatives exchange on Polkadot following a highly successful private investment round.

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Polkadot-centric derivatives exchange raises $6.4M in seed funding

Decentralized exchange dTrade is bringing derivatives trading to the Polkadot ecosystem after concluding a $6.4-million seed investment round, setting the stage for wider decentralized finance use cases on the developer network.

The private investment round was led by some of the biggest names in the blockchain venture capital world, including Three Arrows Capital and DeFiance. Polychain Capital, ParaFi Capital, Huobi, Mechanism Capital, Bixin Ventures, IOSG Ventures, Hypersphere Ventures and Fenbushi Capital also participated.

Several companies have also stepped up to support liquidity on dTrade, including Alameda Research, CMS Holdings, MGNR, Kronos and Wintermute.

Alameda Research has invested heavily in Defi this year, allocating $20 million toward Reef Finance and $4 million toward Coin98 Finance.

As a decentralized exchange, dTrade allows for the trading of perpetual swaps and options with on-chain settlement. In theory, the platform can accommodate unlimited derivatives markets without custodial and counterparty risks. The trading platform is not available to United States-based traders.

“Derivatives are on track to become the largest market in decentralized finance, similar to how they are the largest asset class in traditional finance,” said Nikodem Grzesiak, co-founder of dTrade. “Derivatives are an exciting use case of blockchain. Entirely new perpetual swaps for blockchain-based assets within Polkadot’s multi-chain architecture can be added through a simple governance proposal.”

The popularity of crypto derivatives has exploded over the past year as participants seek additional exposure to the rapidly growing market. CoinMarketCap’s 2020 annual report found that crypto derivatives accounted for 55% of the total cryptocurrency market last year.

Polkadot’s developer network has also grown rapidly, with 435 projects having launched on the platform at the time of publication.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/polkadot-centric-derivatives-exchange-raises-6-4m-in-seed-funding

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Dfinity’s ICP token sees violent first day of trade on major exchanges

Following five years of development, Dfinity’s Internet Computer token is trading on major exchanges.

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Dfinity’s “Internet Computer” tokens are finally tradable after five years in the making.

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Dfinity's ICP token sees violent first day of trade on major exchanges

The launch of the Internet Computer utility token has seen a wild first day of trading after its long-awaited debut on exchanges.

The ICP token from Dfinity was listed on Coinbase Pro and several leading exchanges including Binance, Huobi Global, and OKEx on May 11.

Over four hours, prices for the newly launched token have swung from an early intraday high of $700 down to $250, before recovering 70% over 10 hours to trade for $425 at the time of writing. Coingecko estimates $1.8 billion worth of ICP tokens have traded just 14 hours since trade commenced.

ICP/USD chart, 24 hours: Coingecko

The Internet Computer is a decentralized blockchain project by the Dfinity Foundation. Dfinity describes the protocol’s mission as expanding the functionality of the public internet from a network that connects billions of people through standard protocols to a publicly accessible global supercomputer based on its own ICP protocol.

It has the lofty ambition of replacing the trillion-dollar legacy internet and IT industry by allowing developers to install their code directly on the public internet — dispensing with hosting companies, servers, commercial cloud services, and tech monopolies.

Like Ethereum, the platform would allow developers to run computing applications on decentralized infrastructure. However, Dfinity claims superior scalability over Ethereum’s Layer 1 mainnet.

While Dfinity has been focused on building this Internet Computer since 2016, much of the project’s inner workings have been shrouded in mystery due to its policy of closed-source development. The platform’s Mercury genesis launch event took place on May 7, marking the public launch of the platform after its completed mainnet initialization in December 2020.

ICP tokens can be staked into its governance system to earn “voting rewards” or be converted into “cycles” that can be used to power smart contract computation. The Internet Computer platform runs on a Network Nervous System (NNS), which is an open algorithmic governance system that oversees the network and the token economics.

The system is broken down into several subsections which include the ICP tokens in addition to “neurons” and “canisters” which govern the network autonomously and are explained in much more detail on the Dfinity blog.

The project started fundraising before the 2017 ICO boom under the DFN ticker but has since rebranded to ICP.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/dfinity-s-icp-token-sees-violent-first-day-of-trade-on-major-exchanges

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