The expiration of Bitcoin futures contracts (BTC) today has proven to be sluggish both in terms of price impact and volume. Open interest has lost only $157 million, moving just from the $5 billion level.
As predicted yesterday by Cointelegraph, the most recent Bitcoin futures expiration on the CME was irrelevant. The liquidation of the August contracts should have affected a total value of about $125 million, but preliminary data indicates that only $40 million of contracts were closed, while the rest was renewed for the coming months through rollovers.
Total open interest in millions of USD
The chart above shows the changes in total open interest over the last 24 hours, although the data includes the inverse swaps (perpetual) and the remaining calendar months.
However, this is a surprisingly opposite scenario to the July deadline, when $500 million in futures contracts were settled.
The size of the maturity depends on recent price movements.
The main reason for such an indifference of traders to today’s expiration seems to be the inability in recent weeks to establish support levels above $11,200.
As Cointelegraph pointed out at the beginning of the week, the current „macro factors allude to a positive price cycle in the medium to long term, while in the short term the momentum will weaken leading to a consolidation phase“.
In the last few weeks before the expiry of the two futures contracts, the markets have behaved differently, and for this reason we have seen very different outcomes with regard to the amounts settled. The end of July was characterized by a bull run with an increase of 26%, while the last two weeks were almost stagnant.
Open interest is more important than small deadlines
The recent loss of momentum of Bitcoin Revolution may have disappointed some traders, but this does not mean that professional investors have left the futures markets. The lack of volume, or rather the stability of the open interest of contracts, means that bets have already been placed.
Investors should only worry about a declining open interest, as it indicates that experienced traders have decided to reduce their exposure. Such a situation would be particularly dangerous during consolidation phases.
Aggregate open interest of Bitcoin futures
Currently, such a bearish scenario is a long way off, as the open interest among all exchanges has more than doubled during 2020. The current level of $4.9 billion is only 800 million away from the historical high reached on August 17.