Feb 19, 2019

Trading interest in Bitcoin bounces back

Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Bitcoin, left for dead by many investors, has been on a tear of late and is attracting significant interest from speculators.

Why it matters: Traders raised their bullish bets on bitcoin to the highest level in 11 months on Monday, data from cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex shows, and traders are continuing to pile into the cryptocurrency.

By the numbers: Long positions have risen by 35% in the last three weeks, while short positions have remained largely unchanged. Long positions are near historic highs, but remain at least 8% below the record high registered on March 26, 2018, Coindesk reports.

What's next? Yves Lamoureux, president and chief behavioral strategist of research firm Lamoureux & Co., tells Axios his models show the rally in Bitcoin is going to grow tenfold. He points to the Fed's dovish turn late last year that will eventually lead the U.S. central bank to more quantitative easing and an overheated U.S. economy, prompting major flows into Bitcoin.

  • Further, Lamoureux says, "the Fed is slowly eroding its credibility," leading to more upside for assets like cryptocurrencies.
  • "Our money flow pressure indicates upside for Bitcoin until mid-2020."

Lamoureux called for a rally in Bitcoin to $25,000 per coin in February 2017 when it was trading at around $950.

  • "Whether tulips, housing or tech stocks, bubbles require public participation," he wrote at the time. "And as blockchain becomes more ubiquitous, it lends credibility to the technology behind bitcoin. We feel that digital currencies, such as bitcoin, have now entered a similar cycle."

Yes, but: The cryptocurrency peaked in December 2017 at just under $20,000, short of Lamoureux's prediction. Bitcoin bulls (many of whom held large amounts of the cryptocurrency) also have made a number of outlandish predictions in the past, from Tyler Winklevoss' $100,000 a coin prediction to John McAfee's $1 million.

Still: Bitcoin is trading at its highest in more than 5 weeks at $3,911.

Go deeper: Why Bitcoin's fall gives the planet a breather

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 1,192,028 — Total deaths: 64,549 — Total recoveries: 246,148Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 305,820 — Total deaths: 8,291 — Total recoveries: 14,616Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. The virus is hitting poor, minority communities harder and upending childbirth.
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. "We're having the convention at the end of August."
  5. Business updates: Restaurants step up for health care workers. Employees are pressuring companies to provide protections during coronavirus.
  6. Oil latest: Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Education update: Many college-age students won't get coronavirus relief checks.
  8. 1 🏀 thing: The WNBA postpones start of training camps and season.
  9. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll surpasses 8,200, case count tops 300,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Recorded deaths from the coronavirus surpassed 8,100 in the U.S. on Saturday, per Johns Hopkins data. The death toll in the U.S. has risen over 1,000 every day for the past four days, since April 1.

The big picture: Trump said Saturday that America's "toughest week" is ahead. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the country should expect to see deaths continue to increase in the next week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates: Spain tracks more cases than Italy

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

Spain overtook Italy in its number of coronavirus cases on Saturday. The global death toll has surpassed 62,000, per Johns Hopkins data.

The latest: About half the planet's population is on lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis. Fatalities are exponentially increasing across Europe, with roughly half of deaths worldwide located in Italy and Spain.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 6 hours ago - Health