Bitcoin hovers around $6500, but momentum is building, says analyst

Bitcoin prices are mostly unchanged Friday, continuing what’s been a quiet week for the world’s largest digital currency.

While altcoins, the group of smaller coins beyond the popular bitcoin, have bounced around in ranges of more than 30% this week, bitcoin has been oscillating either side of $6,500. In Friday trading the price of a single bitcoin

BTCUSD, -0.86%

was last at $6,664.66, down 0.5% since Thursday at 5 p.m. Eastern Time on the Kraken exchange.

As the third quarter draws to a close, buzz around seasonality data has crypto analysts hypothesizing that the market is on the precipice of a long-overdue rally. “September is coming to an end and a very interesting quarter is about to start. Does it remind you of anything? Oh yes, it reminds me of last year’s bull rally,” wrote Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Think Markets U.K.

“It appears to me that a similar momentum could be building up again. This must be music to those who are suffering from heavy losses in the crypto market,” he said.

Despite some reprieve, Q3 performance still bleak

While most of these heavy losses were felt in the first quarter of 2018, when the market cap for all cryptocurrencies plummeted by more than $300 billion, the third quarter hasn’t been anything to write home about for crypto owners.

Since July 1, seven of the ten biggest cryptocurrencies suffered further declines, with Ether the biggest loser, shedding 50.4%. At its lowest point, the digital currency that runs on the ethereum blockchain, was down nearly 90% from its all-time high, briefly surrendering second place on the list of largest digital currencies to XRP, which is the second best performing major cryptocurrency of Q3 so far.

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The two other coins in the green for the quarter are bitcoin, which is up 3.8% and Stellar, which has gained 31.1%.

Q3 crypto performance to-date

Since July 1, the market cap for all digital currencies has declined more than $30 billion to $221.7 billion, according to data from CoinMarketCap.

Read: Battered bitcoin bulls are latching on to this seasonality chart

Altcoins underperforming in Friday trading

Volatility among altcoins is continuing Friday with all underperforming bitcoin. Ether

ETHUSD, -1.68%

was down 1% at $226.20, Litecoin

LTCUSD, -3.41%

 was off 2.8% at $62.22, Bitcoin Cash

BCHUSD, -4.00%

 is trading down 2.9% at $546.40 and a single XRP,

XRPUSD, -2.69%

the coin that runs on the Ripple protocol, was last going for 53 cents, down 2.7%.

Bitcoin futures are tracking spot prices lower Friday. The Cboe Global Markets Group Inc.’s October contract

XBTV8, -1.19%

was down 0.9% at $6,645 and the CME Group Inc. September contract

BTCU8, -0.08%

was off 0.1% at $6,650.

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