Crypto Spring? Spot Volumes Up by 49% in April at Crypto-to-Crypto Exchanges

Siamak Masnavi

Over the past three months, although the fundamentals of Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies may not have changed by a huge amount, we have witnessed a significant change in market sentiment, as the result of which the price of Bitcoin has gone from $3,924 (on February 19) to $7,773 (as of 15:15 UTC on May 20), for a gain of over 98%, as can be seen in the 3-month BTC price chart below:

BTC - 3 Month CC Chart - 20 May 2019.jpg

In fact, on May 14, the Bitcoin price went over $8,000 for the first time in 2019:

BTC - One Month CC Chart - 20 May 2019.jpg

This article looks at CryptoCompare's "April 2019 Exchange Review" (which was released earlier today), and highlights four general trends that can be observed during the past three months:

  • Significant increases in the monthly trading volumes at both crypto-to-crypto and fiat-to-crypto spot changes.
  • Crypto-to-crypto spot exchange continuing to dominate fiat-to-crypto spot exchanges with respect to monthly trading volumes; in particular, among those exchanges that have a trans-fee mining (TFM) business model, FCoin, recorded a 3X increase in its trading volume from March to April.
  • USD continuing to increase it's share of the total trading from Bitcoin into fiat.
  • Tether (USDT) continuing to maintain its dominance over the other stablecoins when it comes to Bitcoin-to-stablecoin trading.

Spot Exchange Trading Volumes

Monthly trading volume from crypto-to-crypto exchanges (i.e. that offer only crypto pairs) went up by 49% (from $267 billion to $396 billion) in April (compared to March), while that from fiat-to-crypto exchanges (i.e. those that offer fiat pairs) increased by 25% (from $58 billion to $72 billion):

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 4.png

The top 15 crypto-to-crypto exchanges all had increases in their monthly trading volumes in April with an average increase of 57%. FCoin, in contrast to previous months, was the largest exchange by monthly volume at $37.1 billion USD (up 300%), followed by OKEx at $35.1 billion (up 12.4%), and ZB at 35.1 $32.4 billion (up 18.8%):

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 10.png

Bithumb was the top exchange by total volume in April at $17 billion, despite experiencing a 47% drop in volume. This was followed by Upbit at $8.7 billion USD (up 20%) and Bitfinex at $6.7 billion USD (up 114%):

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 11.png

Bitcoin (BTC) to Fiat Trading Volumes

In April:

USD, JPY, EUR and KRW made up 95% of total trading from Bitcoin into fiat (i.e. only 5% went from Bitcoin to other fiat currencies), with a 60% share for USD (up from 46% in March) and a 10% share for JPY (down from 24% in March):

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 6.png

BTC to USD volume increased by 74.7% to 1.6 million BTC (from 0.92 million BTC in March); BTC to JPY volume decreased by 40% to 0.29 million BTC (from 0.48 million BTC in March); and BTC to KRW volume increased by 17.6% to 0.25 million (from 0.21 million BTC in March):

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 5.png

Bitcoin to Stablecoin Volumes

In April:

BTC trading into Tether (USDT) represented 78.9% of the total monthly Bitcoin trading into fiat or stablecoins, totalling 10.3 million BTC (an increase of 15% compared to March); BTC-to-USDT's share went down from 81.7% in March to 78.9% in April:

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 7.png

CC ER May 2019 - Fig 8.png

Featured Image Credit: Photo via All charts courtesy of CryptoCompare Research.