Bitcoin remains inside range, dominated by short-term traders, analyst says

Bitcoin was mostly unchanged Friday, hovering below $7,000 but on track to finish this week in the green, which would be it is third consecutive winning week.

In early New York trading, one Bitcoin

BTCUSD, +0.71%

 last changed hands at $6,945.32, up 0.5% since Thursday at 5 p.m. Eastern Time on the Kraken crypto exchange.

Despite the intraday volatility in Bitcoin markets, the No. 1 digital currency remains within the broad $6,000 to $7,000 range. Furthermore, Bitcoin and has not broken out of the $5,500 to $8,500 range in more than three months that one asset management firm believes is the dominance of short-term traders.

“Within our own team, we tend to believe the market is in an ultra reflexive state currently. It moves within a range in response to seemingly every bit of news,” wrote Thejas Nalval, portfolio director, and Kevin Lu, director of quantitative research at Element Digital Asset Management.

“This is likely the result of trading having been dominated by short-term players that are using structured derivative vehicles with leverage to express intraday speculation,” Nalval said.

Nalval compared trading Bitcoin to the Brick Breaker videogame where a ball bounces aggressively between two bricks before one gives away, only to find another one either higher or lower.

Read: Opinion: If you want financial secrecy, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can’t deliver it

Altcoins mixed

It’s a mixed start to trading for smaller coins other than Bitcoin, colloquially known as altcoins. Ether

ETHUSD, -1.36%

is down 1.8% to $279.62, Bitcoin Cash

BCHUSD, +0.99%

is unchanged at $537.70, Litecoin

LTCUSD, +1.32%

is up 0.6% at $60.31 and the XRP coin

XRPUSD, -0.25%

which runs on the Ripple network is trading at 33 cents, down 0.8%.

Bitcoin futures are outperforming spot markets Friday. The Cboe Global Markets Inc.’s September contract

XBTU8, +1.90%

 is up 1.5% at $6,940, while the CME Group Inc. August contract

BTCQ8, +2.35%

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