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Crypto Hedge Fund Managers Forgo Sleep to Cope With Market Surge

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(Bloomberg) — Bitcoin began to tease out a sharp ascent on Sydney-based crypto hedge fund manager Richard Galvin’s screens around the time the city’s financial elite were hitting the bars for evening drinks.

The digital asset then embarked on a febrile rally past $60,000 on Wednesday in US trading, spurred by demand from exchange-traded funds, and when Galvin finally called it a day he’d lost another night’s sleep to 24-hour crypto markets.

“I was awake until 3 a.m. Thursday in Sydney watching the incredible run of Bitcoin, which — as sometimes happens — sucked the energy from the rest of the market,” said Galvin, co-founder of DACM.

Read more: Bitcoin Scales $60,000 as ETF Demand Puts Record High in Sight

For investors like Galvin, coping with relentless crypto markets that never stop, even on weekends, is part of the challenge. The US is capturing greater Bitcoin liquidity and price momentum after ETFs investing directly in the token debuted there on Jan. 11, forcing the rest of the world to dance to the US tune.

Singapore-based Jonathan Caldwell, co-head of asset management at Trovio Group, had to rip up a business trip to Europe to field a surge of interest in the digital-asset fund the company oversees.

“We had to handle literally back-to-back calls with existing and potential clients predominantly from Asia,” Caldwell said. “The news flow around record ETF spot volumes has seen the most number of inquiries from investors since we launched the fund six years ago.”

Bitcoin has more than tripled since the start of last year, headlining a comeback for digital-asset markets that had appeared almost beyond rescue after a deep bear market in 2022 that exposed fraud and risky practices. 

The original cryptocurrency jumped as much as 12.8% on Wednesday to $63,968 — its first trip above $60,000 since November 2021. It was trading at $62,325 as of 1:03 p.m. Thursday in Singapore, leaving the all-time peak of almost $69,000 still in sight.

Crypto’s proponents view the US spot Bitcoin ETFs — which have attracted a net inflow of about $7 billion so far — as a step change that widens the accessibility of digital-assets for regular investors. In coming months, Bitcoin’s supply growth will moderate, adding to the likelihood of more volatility — and sleepless nights.

“I had to decline an invitation from friends to go out for drinks,” said Carney Mak, a partner at Singapore-based FXHB Asset Management, which invests in digital tokens. “I also informed my employer that I would be arriving late to the office the next day.”

©2024 Bloomberg L.P.

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