The financial media often points out Bitcoin’s (BTC) correlation to big tech. “Bitcoin is trading like a tech stock” is a common narrative alongside BTC’s often acute inverse-relationship with the United States dollar.
But are these correlations set in stone, and can they be useful for predicting future price moves? Let’s take a closer look at several reports analyzing the relationship between Bitcoin and various asset types.
Bitcoin’s historic correlations vary across timeframes
A report published in October 2022 by the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute arrived at several key conclusions regarding Bitcoin’s correlations with traditional financial assets, including:
- The extreme volatility of the Bitcoin market means that long-term correlations are stronger than short-term correlations;
- The “positive linkage between Bitcoin and risk assets increases during extreme shocks” such as COVID-19;
- Bitcoin can be positively correlated with risk assets and negatively correlated with the US dollar;
- Bitcoin can serve as a hedge against the US dollar.
While some of these points can be countered with newer price data over the last 9 to 10 months, such as a major drop in volatility, insight can still be gained from examining them. In addition, other researchers have gone deeper into the relationship of specific assets to Bitcoin during set timeframes.
A few crypto-related equities have been more correlated to Bitcoin than any other assets on the market. The 90-day correlation coefficient for BTC/MSTR, BTC/COIN, and BTC/RIOT have all remained near 1 for the last several months. The symbols “BTC/xxxx” indicate the correlation coefficient for each asset as measured against Bitcoin.
For MSTR, the coefficient has fallen no lower than 0.68 since September 2022. The coefficient for RIOT fell to roughly 0.75 in June 2023, while COIN trended near 0 for a time during May and June.
All of these stocks have outperformed Bitcoin so far this year while also showing greater volatility. Investors may be using these assets as proxies for Bitcoin, which can’t be bought through a brokerage account.
One reason these three stocks are so closely correlated to Bitcoin has to do with the balance sheet of their respective companies. They all have a substantial amount of Bitcoin holdings.
As seen in the table below, MSTR has the most…