Bitcoin took a deep dive below the $25,000 mark, rattling investors and traders, following a revelation that Elon Musk’s space exploration company, SpaceX, had sold its BTC holdings. The value of the leading cryptocurrency fell to a low of $24,711, sparking similar declines in Bitcoin-related stocks such as Coinbase, Marathon Digital, and Riot Platforms.
Documents scrutinized by The Wall Street Journal unveiled that SpaceX has cleared out its Bitcoin holdings, coming after marking down the value of its holdings for two consecutive years, 2021 and 2022. “SpaceX wrote down the value of Bitcoin it owns by a total of $373 million last year and in 2021 and has sold the cryptocurrency,” claims the WSJ report.
Although the exact sum of the sold Bitcoin is undisclosed, financial documents revealed SpaceX’s significant expenditure: approximately $5.2 billion in total for 2022, encompassing property acquisition, equipment, and R&D costs. Notably, in 2021, Elon Musk made a public declaration that SpaceX possessed a certain Bitcoin quantity, dovetailing Tesla’s announcement of its intent to procure $1.5 billion in BTC. This maneuver notably buoyed BTC to a then-record peak of over $43,000.
Tesla, another Musk-led venture, followed a parallel trajectory with its Bitcoin holdings. By the second quarter of 2023, the electric vehicle giant’s financial statements displayed a retained BTC value of only $184 million, signaling the sale of about 75% of its initial $1.5 billion stake.
Real Reason Behind The Bitcoin Crash
Despite the media frenzy surrounding SpaceX’s Bitcoin sale, the actual impetus for the price crash appears rooted in the futures market. The market witnessed the largest futures liquidation cascade since FTX’s rise, with BTC long liquidations amassing a staggering $386.68 million, based on Coinglass’s data.
Skew, a notable analyst in the crypto sphere, remarked on the abrupt market dynamics: “BTC Open Interest and Perp Delta: Well didn’t expect this so soon but very large rinse in OI here. Bybit OI around June levels & Binance Perp Delta hit highest sell delta since June local low. Wild.”
CryptoQuant’s founder, Ki Young Ju, offered insights into the BTC price anomaly on Coinbase: “BTC price premium on Coinbase up +3%. It’s either: 1. Some whale entity dumped BTC on Binance or 2. Coinbase whales are buying the dip.”
Skew’s subsequent comment hinted at strategic market plays by institutional entities: “Hmm considering the puke came from coinbase spot, makes sense big firms would bid the pricing inefficiencies on coinbase and then dump on binance spot to profit that price difference. Market is in the big boy sandbox now.”
At press time, the Bitcoin price stood at $26,400 and saw a slight recovery. A recovery above the 200-day EMA and in the best case of the uptrend line at $28,400 would be a reaction that bulls want to see.
Featured image from iStock, chart from TradingView.com