Veteran Bitcoin Whales' On-chain Antics Spark Intrigue - Who's Gaining?
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CryptoQuant CEO Ki Young Ju highlights an intriguing Bitcoin trend spotted via on-chain data: old whales are selling Bitcoin to new whales (TradFi), not retail investors.

Veteran Bitcoin whales, referring to early adopters with vast quantities of the currency, are beginning to sell off their holdings. But contrary to what one might expect, it is not the retail investors who are the primary beneficiaries of this sell-off. Instead, a new class of whales has emerged from the traditional finance sector (TradFi), and they are the ones scooping up the Bitcoin being shed by the old guard.

One of the classic patterns observed during Bitcoin bull markets is a transfer of wealth from old to young. Investors who accumulated BTC at lower prices several months or years ago prefer to increase their distribution pressure as new ATHs are reached.

Julio Moreno, CryptoQuant’s head of research, reported an incident along these lines that saw an early BTC miner, probably from the Satoshi era, shift 2,000 BTC. Moreno added that these coins were mined in 2010 and were all transferred to a single address that was newly created.

Similarly, CryptoQuant noted in a recent analysis, referencing Bitcoin Realized Cap Hold Waves, that in recent months, short-term Bitcoin holders have accumulated significant amounts of Bitcoin. Based on this metric, short-term holders now account for 50% of the realized Bitcoin cap.

Shift in dominance

Bitcoin reached an all-time high of $73,750 on March 14. At the time of writing, BTC had risen 1.17% in the previous 24 hours to $70613, down 4.29% from its recent all-time highs.

According to on-chain analytics firm Glassnode, a market rally to new all-time highs coincides with a shift in dominance, in which funds held by new investors and speculators surpass those held by longer-term HODLers.

As Bitcoin reached its ATH, Glassnode reports that $2.6 billion in realized profit were locked in through on-chain spending. Nearly 40% of this profit-taking can be attributed to the long-term holders, which include investors divesting from the GBTC Trust.

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