Bitcoin Sell Orders Dominate the Market as ETF Results Loom

Amid Bitcoin’s market caution, sell orders dominate, hinting at investor focus on profit-taking over new long positions.

Metal bull standing on a floating Bitcoin.
  • Bitcoin’s fluctuating volatility has prompted a tug-of-war between profit-taking and restrained market movements.
  • Subdued derivatives activity has revealed investor reluctance despite recent price surges.
  • Anticipation for a Bitcoin rally post-SEC decision has contrasted with hinted unexpected market outcomes.

A tense calm hangs over the crypto market as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) inches closer to a landmark decision on spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs). With the potential for a major shakeup looming, traders are exercising caution, leading to subdued activity in the derivatives market.

Bitcoin’s Bullish Buzz Fades

Gone are the heady days of December’s price surge, replaced by a cautious dance of profit-taking and sidelined bets. Bitcoin (BTC) started the year near $42,200, briefly touching $45,800 on January 2, only to retreat to its current level of $43,600. This price volatility, however, has not translated to a surge in derivatives activity.


Market intelligence platform CryptoQuant paints a picture of a market holding its breath. Open interest in perpetual futures contracts, a measure of outstanding positions, remains low, indicating a reluctance among investors to open new long positions after last month’s rally. Some are even taking profits, as evidenced by market leverage dipping to its lowest level since January 2022.

Adding fuel to the fire are the soaring costs of opening long positions. Prices have climbed to levels last seen when Bitcoin and Ether scaled their all-time highs in November 2021, making it an expensive proposition to bet on a further rise.

Will Bitcoin Rally or Retreat?

This cautious sentiment is reflected in the Taker Buy Sell volume ratio, which remains below 1. This means sell orders dominate the perpetual futures markets, suggesting investors focus more on locking in gains from recent rallies than entering new long positions.

The current quiet, however, may be pregnant with potential. The crypto community is buzzing with anticipation of a potential BTC rally following the SEC’s ETF decision, expected between January 8 and 10. 


But CryptoQuant throws a cold bucket of water on the bullish hopes, warning that the market dynamics could turn the anticipated announcement into a “sell-the-news” event, leading to a price drop instead of a surge.

On the Flipside

  • There have been “sell-the-news” events that didn’t necessarily lead to significant price drops in the short or long term.
  • The current low derivatives activity might not solely stem from regulatory apprehensions but could also reflect a natural consolidation phase following previous rapid price movements.

Why This Matters

With so much riding on the SEC’s verdict, the next few days will likely be a tense dance between hope and trepidation in the Bitcoin market. Whether the bulls take charge or the bears reign supreme largely depends on how investors interpret the regulatory news and navigate the delicate balance of risk and reward.

To learn more about how VanEck’s Bitcoin ETF could boost BTC devs with a 5% profit boon, read here:
VanEck’s Bitcoin ETF to Boost BTC Devs with 5% Profit Boon

For insights into why the Bitcoin ETF is favored by 3 out of 5 SEC commissioners according to an ETF expert, check out:
Bitcoin ETF Favored by 3/5 SEC Commissioners: ETF Expert

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Kyle Calvert

Kyle Calvert is a cryptocurrency news reporter for DailyCoin, specializing in Ripple, stablecoins, as well as price and market analysis news. Before his current role, Kyle worked as a student researcher in the cryptocurrency industry, gaining an understanding of how digital currencies work, their potential uses, and their impact on the economy and society. He completed his Masters and Honors degrees in Blockchain Technology within Esports and Business and Event management within Esports at Staffordshire University.