Speculation of Bear Market Reinforced by Crypto Declines and Cutbacks

  • Bitcoin reached an all-time low of $22,725 since December 2020 
  • Other cryptos are feeling the strain, many of which are facing value declines of more than 30% in just a week
  • Many crypto-focused companies have begun issuing hiring freezes and layoffs as a result of the low-valued prices
  • Crypto exchange Gemini is laying off at least 10% of its employees, citing a turbulent market and “crypto winter”

Speculation of a bear market has become a reality. Bitcoin just reached an all-time low (since December 2020), with a value of $23,981. Other cryptocurrencies are feeling the effects of this bear market as well, with the total cryptocurrency market cap declining to $1.02 trillion as of June 13, 2022, from $3 trillion in November 2021.

According to Antoni Trenchev, co-founder and managing partner of crypto lending platform Nexo, “Cryptos remain at the mercy of the Fed and stuck in a merry dance with the Nasdaq and other risk assets. We’re hearing Bitcoin forecasts in the mid-teen, and single-digit thousands, which tells you the type of macro environment crypto is facing for the first time — and the levels of fear” (https://ibn.fm/CPMCz).

Crypto-focused companies like Canaan, Inc. (NASDAQ: CAN), a developer of digital blockchain computing equipment, saw declines in excess of -13%. Canaan’s short-term technical score of 46 has indicated that the stock has traded less bullishly over the last month than 54% of the stocks on the market. Canaan’s long-term technical rank is 56, meaning that over the last 200 trading days, the company ranked within the top half of stocks. In the Computer Hardware Industry, Canaan’s score is 76, ranking better than 76% of stocks. Canaan is scheduled to release their earnings statement in August 2022.

In light of the recent decline, traders are betting for a more aggressive pace of Federal Reserve tightening since data last week shows inflation soaring to a 40-year high in May. Crypto has struggled immensely under the Fed’s policy in recent months, and that struggle has hit some companies hard. For example, the collapse of the Terra/Luna ecosystem last month. Confidence in the crypto space is critically low right now. 

Bobby Ong, co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of CoinGecko, expressed a warning on Twitter, “From the next cycle’s view, we are probably near the bottom, but that doesn’t mean that price can nuke 50% further. FWIW, I don’t think we are at the bottom yet coz conferences are still full, crypto parties are still extravagant, still seeing excesses among teams, macro environment is still weak. The layoffs have started but not widespread yet. Stay strong and manage your positions well” (https://ibn.fm/dPV3z).

With the tumbling prices that have occurred this year in the crypto industry, some of the trading platforms, including Coinbase Global Inc. (NASDAQ: COIN), have begun instituting hiring freezes and layoffs. The crypto exchange Gemini announced recently that 10% of jobs would be eliminated. The Gemini announcement came from Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, citing the “turbulent market conditions” as a determining factor. “This is where we are now, in the contraction phase that is settling into a period of stasis — what our industry refers to as ‘crypto winter.’ This has all been further compounded by the current macroeconomic and geopolitical turmoil. We are not alone,” the Winklevoss brothers said (https://ibn.fm/MWokd). The current crypto climate further supports the consensus that the market is now in bear territory.

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