Crypto Update: Rising in the East

Jacob Pouncey

Cryptocurrency analyst, Saxo Bank Group

This week the entire crypto market cap rose 4% to over $340 billion. Ethereum outperformed the market rising 6.5% over the week. Meanwhile, Bitcoin traded 1% higher, with its market cap sitting at $130 billion, or 38% of the total crypto market cap.

Bitcoin trading volumes have remained flat while Ethereum’s have increased over the last three months. 

Bitcoin and Ethereum Trading volumes YTD – source:

China warming up to cryptos again

President Xi Jinping of China recently stated that blockchain is part of a new revolution in technology. Additionally, China Central Television aired a segment where they stated that blockchain is ten times more valuable than the internet and informed the audience on blockchain technology and the risks associated. The Ministry of Industry and Technology, meanwhile, began releasing cryptocurrency ratings this month and plans to produce more, all while cryptocurrency trading has been banned in China since last year. It seems that the rhetoric coming from China has always been pro-blockchain, but now it is becoming more pro-cryptocurrency. China at one point dominated global trading volume; Beijing lifting its ban on trading by the end of 2019 is a highly underrated event as the market has become desensitised to news from China since the ban. 

Coinbase expanding to Japan

Coinbase announced that it will expand to the Japanese market. The company hired former Morgan Stanley Japan banker Nao Kitazawa as CEO of its new office. This is the latest move by companies looking to expand to the Japanese market (SBI also recently launched its exchange in the country). Additionally, GMO technologies and Yahoo Japan are looking to open exchanges in Japan. Japan is arguably the most crowded digital exchange market and it will be difficult for Coinbase to expand to Japanese retail investors due to its limited asset offerings compared to competitors. Perhaps a more institutional clientele will suit Coinbase better in the Japanese market.

Endowments are beginning to invest

US university endowments are starting to invest in cryptocurrencies through hedge funds. John Lore, the founder of Capital Fund Law Group, stated that some of his university clients are investing in cryptocurrencies for strategic reasons. This highlights the further maturation of universities’ relationship with blockchain tech and the beginning wave of institutional money flowing into the space, but do not expect pension funds to invest until there is more regulatory certainty and, most likely, a digital asset ETF.

Bitcoin price in USD,

Access both platforms from your single Saxo account.


Any opinions, news, research, analyses, prices or other information contained on this website is provided as general market commentary and does not constitute investment advice or a personal recommendation and does not take into consideration your objectives, financial situation and needs. Saxo Capital Markets UK Limited will not accept liability for any loss or damage including, without limitation, to any loss of profit which may arise directly or indirectly from use of or reliance on such information. We assume no liability for errors, inaccuracies or omissions contained within these materials.

It is important that you understand that with investments, your capital is at risk. We offer leveraged products which carry risk and can result in losses that exceed deposits. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. It is your responsibility to ensure that you make an informed decision about whether or not to invest with us. If you are still unsure if investing is right for you, please seek independent advice. To help you understand the risks involved we have put together a series of Key Information Documents (KIDs) highlighting the risks and rewards related to each product. Read more here.

Additional Key Information Documents are available in our trading platform.

Saxo Capital Markets UK is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Firm Reference Number 551422. Registered address: 26th Floor, 40 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London E14 5DA. Company number 7413871

Please read our full disclaimer -