Bitcoin’s had a fantastic start for 2021, with it already establishing a new all-time high by the tune of $34,778. As one would imagine, many a hodler is overwhelmed with feelings of validation regarding this.
A Large Shift From 2017’s Bull Run
Indeed, the last time Bitcoin saw such spectacular price action was back in the great bull run of 2017. However, that bull run only saw a peak at $19,783. Not even mainstream media could ignore the world’s first cryptocurrency with its spectacular price surge, with one of the more prominent voices in that being the New York Times. The news outlet took note of the current price rally, claiming that it had very little to do with the previous bull run that happened back in 2017.
With many a voice in the crypto space agreeing with the mainstream media outlet, the time has come to take a deeper look into all of this, and try to figure out what made this bull run so successful.
Institutional Players Taking The Lead This Time
One of the biggest differences believed to be between the bull run of 2017 and the current one comes down primarily to the retail investors involved. Back in 2017, the majority players within the space was retail investors, taking big bits on the then-nascent market of Bitcoin and various other new cryptocurrencies gushing out from the Initial product offering (ICO) craze.
Reportedly, there were millions of retail investors, spread across Japan, South Korea, and China were the main drivers of the market back in 2017. This left the “average Joe” in control of the massive price gain off that year, going up by 1,300%. This was pointed out by one Chris Weston, the Chief Market Strategist of IG Group, through an article made by the Wall Street Journal.
2020, however, is a whole other ball game entirely. The entire investor landscape has seen an incredible amount of change by way of institutional investors. In the previous bull run, they had stayed along the sidelines for the most part, but this rally has seen them, quite literally, become the face of the bullish sentiments this time around.
A Shit In Crypto Sentiments
These institutional players typically play the long-term game when it comes to holding positions, and aren’t planning to sell their holdings any time soon. As it stands now, these investors are gathering to the BTC Futures markets by the drove. The Chicago Mercantile Exchange has recently recorded an excess of $1 billion in open interest in its BTC futures products. Alongside this, it seems that institutional players are strengthening their balance sheets with BTC as opposed to boasting cash reserves.
The irony is how against crypto these very institutional players were. Many a voice that dismissed and demonized Bitcoin and the various cryptos outside of it have come to adopt it themselves, with others staunchly refusing to give credibility to it.
Prime examples of the former is PayPal set to support cryptocurrencies after its former CEO warned that BTC would hold no value in the future. An example of the latter would be Peter Schiff, a famous gold bug, that’s been consistently slandering crypto since the start.