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Ethereum decouples from Bitcoin: Examining the causes

2min Read

Bitcoin’s correlation with Ethereum dipped to 75% in November, a departure from November 2022’s ATH of 97%.

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  • The decoupling was most likely due to an increase in spot ETH ETF launches.
  • A lower BTC-ETH correlation made a case for portfolio diversification.

Bitcoin’s [BTC] correlation with Ethereum [ETH] dropped to multi-year lows, signaling a major divergence in the growth trajectories of the two blue-chip cryptocurrencies.

Based on a 60-day rolling window, the correlation dipped to 75% in November, according to crypto market data provider Kaiko. This was a marked departure from the all-time highs (ATH) of 97% seen during the end of 2022.

Source: Kaiko

Ethereum weakens its relationship with Bitcoin

AMBCrypto spotted a vertical drop in the relationship since November. While there was no telling evidence, the decoupling seemed to be caused by an increase in spot ETH exchange-traded fund (ETF) launches.

The broader market bullishness was led by excitement over likely approvals of a dozen-odd spot Bitcoin ETF applications. This led to the start of the mid-October rally and by the time the month ended, BTC had accumulated gains of 26%.

However, ETH was slow to match this pace, finishing October with 17% gains.

Source: Santiment

However, the announcement of spot ETH ETFs by TradFi giants such as BlackRock and Fidelity turned it around for ETH in November. The second-largest crypto bounced above the crucial barrier of $2,000 for the first time since May 2022.

To put it simply, ETH reacted more to developments in its own ecosystem rather than a trickle-down effect.

It is important to understand that both assets function very differently from each other.

Notably, Ethereum is used as a platform for the development of decentralized applications (dApps) and smart contracts. Meanwhile, Bitcoin is primarily used as a store of value and a means of payment.

What is the takeaway for investors?

As per a 21 April report by Coinbase, the lower BTC-ETH correlation makes a case for portfolio diversification, as holding both assets can result in higher returns.

Smart investors spread their investments across different cryptos, reducing their exposure to any one category.

Read Bitcoin’s [BTC] Price Prediction 2023-24

As for institutional investors, the trend could impact their trading strategies like cross-hedging. For the curious, cross-hedging is a practice of managing risk by investing in two assets that have similar price movements but are not perfectly correlated.

Having said that, traders and investors should not take these as investment advice, and instead perform their due diligence.


Aniket is a full-time journalist at AMB Crypto. With experience in news publishing and content management, he is now increasingly tangled up in the web of cryptocurrencies and blockchains. His focus lies on the intersection between cryptos and traditional finance. He prefers DC over Marvel, cats over dogs and Hyderabadi Biryani over Kolkata Biryani.
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