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Bakkt Building: Registers $5 million in First Week

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October 2, 2019 | 

1777 Views | 

Darryn Pollock | 

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The highly anticipated Bakkt futures trading platform launched by the Intercontinental Exchange as an entry point for institutional traders into the Bitcoin market has had a gradual start to its trading. This platform has been heralded as the big turning point for institutional money to come flooding into the Bitcoin market, but it has been a slow start. 

Bakkt’s trading platform is unique as it works through physically settled bitcoin on its futures contracts, that is to say that the pay out and deposits are made in Bitcoin, rather than being traded against the market in US dollars. Thus, it is a big step for traditional investors who have been shy to get their hands on the coin.

However, being fully regulated and controlled by a traditional exchange, there is no reason for traditional investors to fear the platform and it is intended to welcome them in and get them used to crypto. However, there has not been the same anticipated flood as many would have hoped. 

In the first day of the futures trading, 71 BTC were recorded which was a decent enough number, but nothing that would set the market ablaze or give signs of a mass rush to Bakkt. Now, a week down the line and the trading has come to 623 BTC, which amounts to $5 million dollars at the current price of Bitcoin which is near $8,200.

Slow start

The fact that this new exchange managed to see $5 million though it in just one week is not a bad start, however, the performance is being compared to other Bitcoin futures contracts that have been opened up to traditional investors elsewhere. One of the original futures contracts for institutional investors came from CME, and they have been looking to expand recently due to an increase in demand. 

In fact, some 4,099 bitcoin futures contracts traded last Friday alone at rival CME, the company that opened its doors in December of 2017 when the price of Bitcoin hit its all time high. Additionally, the CME’s futures contracts represent five Bitcoins per contract, for a trading volume of $165 million on the single day.

According to the exchange, the new offering should appeal to institutional investors like hedge funds and other money managers because Bitcoin must be delivered to fulfill the contract’s terms when the maturity date arrives. That feature has been touted as a key advantage for asset owners who want to hedge their portfolios, in contrast with the CME’s contract, which is settled via cash payments but has become popular with individual investors.

Early days

Despite the slow performance, the signs are still there that Bakkt can have a big effect on the amrket, although it may not be as rapid and as viloent as many would have hoped. There have been some commentatos, like Tom Lee and John McAfee who have said that Bakkt is a big step for institutional investors.

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