Bitcoin Mania Lifts Rival Coins to Record HighsBy
Bitcoin is getting most of the attention in crypto-assets, especially given its recent meteoric rise, but institutional investors may be looking for the next big thing.
Larger-cap crypto-assets have been outperforming their smaller counterparts, Fundstrat technical strategist Rob Sluymer wrote in a report. He sees this as evidence some bigger players may be seeking new investments within the asset class.
“Cryptocurrencies such as ripple, litecoin, NEM and zcash to name a few, materially outperformed,” Sluymer wrote, “potentially reflecting new institutional interest looking beyond bitcoin with a focus on liquidity.”
In the same report, noted crypto-bull Tom Lee points out that bitcoin’s correlation to other asset classes -- equities, bonds and commodities -- has been declining, which he says is a reason institutions may want to consider cryptocurrencies in their portfolios.
“It represents natural diversification,” Lee said.
Ether and litecoin, the second and fourth biggest cryptocurrencies, have surged to all-time highs amid the optimism that bitcoin futures will attract institutions to the fledgling market. The rallies come as speculators flock to Coinbase.com Inc., whose app has climbed to the top of Apple Inc.’s download rankings. Known mainly as one of the easiest ways to trade bitcoin, the site also provides access to trading litecoin, ether and bitcoin cash.
Litecoin has more than doubled since Dec. 10, before bitcoin derivatives started trading on Cboe Global Markets Inc., while ether has soared more than 40 percent in that time to $633, according to CryptoCompare, a website tracking digital currency prices. The CME Group Inc. introduced its own futures contract Sunday. Litecoin and ether were little changed Monday, according to prices on Bloomberg.
Given the relatively new interest in the asset class, anything that could indicate changes in flows or interest might be of use to investors. Sluymer sees the performance of crypto-asset indexes as one important tool to watch for “internal shifts developing within the crypto universe.”