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‘Fire in the cauldron’ as Coinbase, Marathon surge over 300% in 2023


Publicly traded crypto firms have notched triple-digit percentage returns this year and closed up in green on Dec. 4, as Bitcoin (BTC) reached a new year-high of over $42,000. 

Crypto exchange Coinbase (COIN) closed the day at just over $141 with a 5.5% gain, up 320% from its price at the start of the year, per Google Finance data.

Bitcoin miners Marathon Digital (MARA) and Riot Platforms (RIOT) closed the day with over 8% gains, recording 337% and 345% year-to-date (YTD) gains, respectively.

A visual map of the one-day price of S&P 500 stocks shows mixed results on Dec. 4 Source: Finviz

Crypto investment firm Galaxy Digital Holdings (GLXY) posted a daily gain of nearly 12% and is up 155% YTD and MicroStrategy (MSTR) — with the largest Bitcoin holdings of any public company valued at over $6.6 billion — saw a daily gain of over 6.5% and a YTD rise of 288%.

It comes despite the wider North American stock market seeing a mixed bag of gainers and losers on Dec. 4. Large-cap tech stocks, such as Microsoft, fell 1.43% on the day, while Apple fell 0.95%. Google fell 2.02% and chip manufacturer Nvidia fell 2.68%.

Large-cap tech stocks, such as Microsoft, fell 1.43% on Dec. 4, while Apple fell 0.95%. Google fell 2.02%, and chip manufacturer Nvidia fell 2.68%.

The crypto-related stocks are well below their all-time highs, however.

IG Australia market analyst Tony Sycamore told Cointelegraph the crypto-related stock rally is “coming off the back of Bitcoin’s spectacular gains in recent months,” which is up nearly 152% YTD and is closing in on $42,000 — it has already hit a 19-month high.

Sycamore said investors see crypto stocks as a way to gain crypto exposure until the United States approves spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

“As the price of Bitcoin rises, it fuels excitement and drives increased trading volumes and participation across the crypto ecosystem,” he added.

A chart showing the price correlation between Bitcoin (red) and Coinbase (blue) since June 2022. Source: IG

Sycamore said Bitcoin is supported “by a set of tailwinds not seen since 2021” and highlighted the optimism around spot ETF approvals, possible U.S. Federal Reserve rate cuts next year and the upcoming Bitcoin halving slated for April.

Crypto platform Zerocap investment chief Jon de Wet said possible ETF approvals and the halving means “we have some serious fire in the cauldron for the crypto space.”

Related: How to prepare for the next crypto bull market: 5 simple steps

CMC Markets analyst Tina Teng and de Wet agreed that crypto stocks are “exchange-listed proxies” for investors to indirectly expose themselves to the market. Teng said pending spot ETFs have been a “micro-bullish factor” to Bitcoin’s rally since August.

“The ETF is certainly a key driver in sentiment,” said de Wet. “We are also seeing a maturing cryptocurrency market in which participants are increasingly seeing the value in scarce assets.”

Sycamore added the latest wave of excitement will attract a new wave of crypto investors and the increased interest, volatility and volume will mean increased earnings and profits for crypto exchanges and similar businesses.

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