‘Crowd psychology’ drives bitcoin’s price, survey finds

Digital currencies were trading higher early Thursday in New York, with Bitcoin, the worlds most prominent digital currency, on track to avoid a back-to-back skid—something it hasn’t done in two weeks.

A single Bitcoin

BTCUSD, +0.02%

 was last valued at $8,287.42, up 1.3% since Wednesday at 5 p.m. Eastern Time on the Krakan cryptocurrency exchange. Broad-based gains has pushed the total value of all cryptocurrencies to a fresh six-week high of $304 billion, according to data from Coinmarketcap.

Industry participants believe Bitcoin’s resurgence has been a function of positive market factors, including a renewed focus around a potential Bitcoin-related ETF, which could underpin fresh moves higher in the asset. An improved technical outlook around Bitcoin, which has pierced several technical milestones in its 40% surge from the June 24 low, has underpinned recent optimism.

However, according to a recent survey, more than half (52%) of the respondents said they believe crowd psychology is the main driver of the price of the No. 1 digital currency.

“To our thinking, this was the single most surprising response of the whole survey,” wrote Nicholas Colas, co-founder of DataTrek Research. “Finance professionals make their livings by analyzing asset values through the lens of fundamental/quantifiable factors. That more than half of respondents believe valuation in the crypto space is “purely a function of crowd psychology” is refreshing in its honesty.”

Just 15% said the price of Bitcoin was a function of growing usage.

Read: Barry Silbert says Bitcoin put in its 2018 low, but 99% of cryptos are worthless

Elsewhere, the DataTrek survey found crypto custody—the holding and storing of digital currencies—was the biggest issue for investors, with around 38% saying a cryptocurrency would never become a global reserve asset. DataTrek surveyed 216 people of which 42% were in the traditional money management industry and 24% were brokers.

Read: Here’s the case against day-trading Bitcoin

Altoins and futures are off to a winning start Thursday

Major altcoins, or those that are alternatives to Bitcoin, were off to a winning start. Ether

ETHUSD, -0.04%

the second-largest digital currency, is up 1.7% at $483.57, Bitcoin Cash

BCHUSD, -0.45%

added 2%, trading at $853.10, Litecoin

LTCUSD, -0.93%

was trading unchanged at $87.44 and Ripple’s XRP coin

XRPUSD, -1.59%

was last trading at 47 cents, up a slight 0.3%.

Bitcoin futures are showing solid gains in early morning action. The Cboe Global Markets contract for August

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