When Arthur Hayes has an opinion, he doesn’t tend to mince words.
The BitMEX CEO and noted pot-stirrer stayed true to form on Tuesday when using a few, err, colorful illustrations, he predicted that the ethereum price is on track to plunge to double-digit price levels.
Writing in BitMEX’s “Crypto Trader Digest,” the exchange operator’s semi-regular newsletter, Hayes argued that ethereum is a “sh*tcoin” whose price has been buttressed by initial coin offerings (ICOs) since at least early 2017. Increasingly, those investments have come from VCs, who he says will eventually capitulate to the bear market and dump their ether and ERC-20 tokens at whatever price they can get.
“The VC investor who has never suffered the vagaries of the market is as green as the noob who thinks he or she can go from 1 to 100 Bitcoin in a few trading days. They don’t have the mental strength to cut positions to limit further losses, or backup the truck and buy opportune dips even though they are down. More importantly, LPs can now see an objective last price for a particular token, and can’t be hoodwinked. They will attempt to be a Monday morning quarterback, and that only adds to the VC investors’ anxiety. At a certain point, they go ‘f*** it’, and dump everything they can.”
As CCN reported, ethereum has been a headliner in this week’s altcoin bloodbath. The second-largest cryptocurrency, once considered a lock to supplant bitcoin as the most valuable cryptocurrency, traded as low as $249 on Monday and is still down 22 percent over the past seven days, even after recovering to about $280 on Tuesday.
Some analysts have speculated that the sell-off is the result of ICO-funded startups cashing out their ether, fearing that the bear market is going to extend further than many people had initially expected. However, Hayes argues that it will be VCs who deal the real death-blow since fund managers tend to operate according to a herd mentality.
“The herd of token VC punters will all decide to sell at the same time. If you don’t sell, and the market continues falling, you lose your job. So everyone sells simultaneously but who can eat all that shit? Retail cannot because the deals would never have gotten so large without institutional money. So we gap lower, first on tokens, then on the mothership Ether.”
“I don’t know what that tipping point will be, but in hindsight, it will be obvious when the capitulation occurs. There are those who believe that a sustainable token economy can exist. But they won’t be buying at these levels. Sub-$100 takes us back to Spring 2017 levels. At those depressed prices, the carrion is ripe for ingestion.”
“It is this moment,” he concluded, “that Ether goes from a 3-digit to a 2-digit sh*tcoin.”