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digital
daily

digital daily: Long Memories

Long Memories. The credit crunch in digital asset markets is being resolved with rapid deleveraging and delinquency. The resolution, even if unpleasant, will lead to a stronger, more resilient ecosystem. Bailouts absolve actors of consequence, stretching out the problems and occupying space that should be reserved for solutions. Digital is forced to deal with imbalance head-on. And it is. Bitcoin mining is a good example. Public releases are demonstrating that miners were far more aggressive sellers of bitcoin in June, not surprisingly given cash flow needs. Riot Blockchain sold 71% of its June production, for instance. The realization of downside risk will lead to an adjustment in business models. Miners are the natural seller of bitcoin in a bull run. But they held, anticipating higher prices. Business models shifted away from bitcoin production to bitcoin asset management. Miners are more likely to risk manage bitcoin production in the future. And a richer, deeper forward and options market can emerge like corporates and foreign exchange. Now, market signals are flashing that it is time to move out of the risk spectrum. The one-month annualized yield in BTC futures is running at 1%, well below the 21% highs last Fall when demand for various forms of bullish financing was red-hot. The strains in this cycle have been far more mature in ways. Yields never spiked down to steeply negative levels in March 2020, the most severe speculative washout. This deleveraging is more about business structure than speculative trading. March 2020 will never be repeated because the lesson was learned. The same holds true for the current punishing period. Resiliency is hard-earned…and with long memories.

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