Market Wrap: Cryptos and Stocks Mixed; Bitcoin Outperforms Altcoins

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Most cryptocurrencies traded lower on Monday, tracking losses in global equities.

Bitcoin (BTC), the world's largest crypto by market capitalization, declined by less than most of the alternative cryptos (altcoins) last month, indicating an overall lower appetite for risk among traders. On Monday, BTC was roughly flat, compared with a 3% loss in Shiba Inu's SHIB token and a 2% dip in Solana's SOL token.

Still, some altcoins have edged higher, including Avalanche's AVAX token, which was up by 4% over the past 24 hours but down by 17% over the past week. Overall, both stocks and cryptos have experienced choppy price action over the past few months.

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On Monday, the S&P 500 fell to a new record low for the year as the 10-year Treasury yield hit 3% for the first time since 2018. Also, on Monday, European stocks plunged during the first few minutes of trading, which caused some exchanges to briefly halt trading. Gold, a traditional safe haven, was also down on Monday.

Bitcoin, ether and gold prices are taken at approximately 4pm New York time. Bitcoin is the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (XBX); Ether is the CoinDesk Ether Price Index (ETX); Gold is the COMEX spot price. Information about CoinDesk Indices can be found at coindesk.com/indices.

Bitcoin dominance on watch

The risk-off tone in stocks is also evident in crypto markets.

The chart below shows the bitcoin dominance ratio, or the ratio of bitcoin's market cap relative to the total crypto market cap. The ratio has been stuck in a year-long range, albeit elevated above 40%.

Typically, the BTC dominance ratio declines during risk-on periods as altcoins outperform bitcoin. And during down markets, the ratio rises as bitcoin experiences less selling pressure than alts. The last significant rise in the dominance ratio was seen during the 2018 crypto bear market.

Currently, the ratio is trading above its 200-day moving average, which could signal a reversal from its steep downtrend.

Additional increases in the dominance ratio could also cap upside moves in several altcoins relative to bitcoin.

Still, multi-asset crypto fund flows have continued to rise this year, which could reflect the need for diversification among investors. For example, in April, bitcoin and ether-focused crypto funds saw outflows, while multi-asset funds saw inflows, according to data from CoinShares.

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