Monitoring the crypto markets Monitoring the crypto markets Monitoring the crypto markets

Monitoring the crypto markets

Anders Nysteen

Senior Quantitative Analyst, Saxo Bank

Summary:  We get a lot of questions on which trackers and indicators we use to monitor the state of the crypto markets. Here we give an overview of some of our favourite trackers to monitor the market sentiment and movements.

We track many corners of the crypto market, including the crypto traders, network validators, the applications of crypto- and blockchain technology, and of course also the overall risk sentiment in the financial markets.

Crypto traders/users

Crypto funds

Standard ways to invest in cryptocurrencies are either by buying either the actual cryptos or crypto derivatives on a crypto exchange. An increasingly popular way of getting exposure is to buy a crypto tracker such as an ETN or ETP on a stock exchange, and these are typically used to get a long-term exposure. Although the AUM in these trackers are still relatively low compared to the total crypto market cap, they may be a good indicator of the long-term sentiment. One extensive study is provided by CoinShares on a weekly basis here:

Exchange inflows

The trader sentiment on the shorter term is quantified by several different indicators, whereas one important one is the inflow to crypto exchanges. If traders (and crypto miners – see later) are not looking to sell, they keep their crypto tokens in their private wallets. But if they at one point want to be able to liquidate their positions, they will transfer their holdings to exchanges, and thus a net inflow to crypto exchanges suggests an increased selling pressure. Many different provides track these numbers such as Chainalysis, here on a chart from The Block, showing how the inflows and exchange balances were high during the crash of the TerraUSD stablecoin.

Search activity interest

When it comes to the general interest in crypto trading, The Block provides a good overview of the search activity on Google on the different cryptocurrencies:

Network validators

Validators are needed to verify transactions on the different blockchains, and for Bitcoin and the current version of Ethereum, these are well-known as miners, and keep our focus here in this section. The combined computational activity of miners is measured by the total hash rate, with an example from provided below for Bitcoin. The miners are rewarded both in fees and freshly minted bitcoin, and their revenue may be found on too.

The miners’ profits depends not only on the price of Bitcoin, reward size and fees, but also on the electricity prices. With lower Bitcoin prices, some mining rigs may become unprofitable, and a good indication of this is found on If too many miners are unprofitable and have to close down their rigs, it may compromise the security of the network, although this seems quite unlikeable with the current rewards and fees – read more on this here.


The number of applications for crypto technologies is an important component in the adoption of cryptocurrencies on a global basis. A major application for smart contracts is within Decentralized Finance – bank-like services such as lending, but run on a blockchain instead of having an intermediary bank. One measure of the use of these applications is the Total Value Locked in the applications:

Source: DeFiLama

Another popular application is NFTs – non-fungible tokens – which are unique online objects trading on a blockchain. They are currently used for online art, music and even real estate. The speculative crypto fever back in 2021 has played an important role for the increasing interest for NFTs, although the interest has fallen in 2022, as shown here:

Exogenic factors

The crypto market in 2022 has to a large extent been driven by the overall risk sentiment in the equity market, especially high-risk tech stocks and the Ark Innovation Fund, and thus the crypto indicators are only showing a part of the picture. One way which the volatility in the equity market is quantified is through the VIX index as shown below – the higher the value, the higher expected volatility.

The VIX index is a measure of the 30-days expected volatility of the U.S. stock market, derived from associated mid-quote prices of put and call options.

The Saxo Group entities each provide execution-only service and access to Analysis permitting a person to view and/or use content available on or via the website is not intended to and does not change or expand on this. Such access and use are at all times subject to (i) The Terms of Use; (ii) Full Disclaimer; (iii) The Risk Warning; (iv) the Rules of Engagement and (v) Notices applying to Saxo News & Research and/or its content in addition (where relevant) to the terms governing the use of hyperlinks on the website of a member of the Saxo Group by which access to Saxo News & Research is gained. Such content is therefore provided as no more than information. In particular no advice is intended to be provided or to be relied on as provided nor endorsed by any Saxo Group entity; nor is it to be construed as solicitation or an incentive provided to subscribe for or sell or purchase any financial instrument. All trading or investments you make must be pursuant to your own unprompted and informed self-directed decision. As such no Saxo Group entity will have or be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of any investment decision made in reliance on information which is available on Saxo News & Research or as a result of the use of the Saxo News & Research. Orders given and trades effected are deemed intended to be given or effected for the account of the customer with the Saxo Group entity operating in the jurisdiction in which the customer resides and/or with whom the customer opened and maintains his/her trading account. Saxo News & Research does not contain (and should not be construed as containing) financial, investment, tax or trading advice or advice of any sort offered, recommended or endorsed by Saxo Group and should not be construed as a record of our trading prices, or as an offer, incentive or solicitation for the subscription, sale or purchase in any financial instrument. To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, you must note and accept that the content was not intended to and has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such, would be considered as a marketing communication under relevant laws.

Please read our disclaimers:
- Notification on Non-Independent Investment Research (
- Full disclaimer (

None of the information contained here constitutes an offer to purchase or sell a financial instrument, or to make any investments. Saxo does not take into account your personal investment objectives or financial situation and makes no representation and assumes no liability as to the accuracy or completeness of the information nor for any loss arising from any investment made in reliance of this presentation. Any opinions made are subject to change and may be personal to the author. These may not necessarily reflect the opinion of Saxo or its affiliates.

Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited
19th Floor
Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower
12 Queen’s Road Central
Hong Kong

Contact Saxo

Select region

Hong Kong S.A.R
Hong Kong S.A.R

Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited (“Saxo”) is a company authorised and regulated by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong. Saxo holds a Type 1 Regulated Activity (Dealing in Securities); Type 2 Regulated Activity (Dealing in Futures Contract); Type 3 Regulated Activity (Leveraged Foreign Exchange Trading); Type 4 Regulated Activity (Advising on Securities) and Type 9 Regulated Activity (Asset Management) licenses (CE No. AVD061). Registered address: 19th Floor, Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower, 12 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong.

Trading in financial instruments carries various risks, and is not suitable for all investors. Please seek expert advice, and always ensure that you fully understand these risks before trading. Trading in leveraged products may result in your losses exceeding your initial deposits. Saxo does not provide financial advice, any information available on this website is ‘general’ in nature and for informational purposes only. Saxo does not take into account an individual’s needs, objectives or financial situation. Please click here to view the relevant risk disclosure statements.

The Saxo trading platform has received numerous awards and recognition. For details of these awards and information on awards visit

The information or the products and services referred to on this site may be accessed worldwide, however is only intended for distribution to and use by recipients located in countries where such use does not constitute a violation of applicable legislation or regulations. Products and services offered on this website are not directed at, or intended for distribution to or use by, any person or entity residing in the United States and Japan. Please click here to view our full disclaimer.

Apple, iPad and iPhone are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries. AppStore is a service mark of Apple Inc. Android is a trademark of Google Inc.