Major Bitcoin Miner: We’re Not Holding Crypto Anymore, Too Much Volatility

Major Bitcoin Miner: We’re Not Holding Crypto Anymore, Too Much Volatility

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One of the largest crypto mining and hoarding companies in North America, Bitfarms Ltd. announced that it has changed its holding strategy during the current market volatility and sold almost half of its mined coins in the past week.

The publicly traded Toronto-based company said in a June 21 press release that it had “adjusted its HODL strategy to improve liquidity and strengthen its balance sheet.”

Over the past week, Bitfarms said it sold 3,000 Bitcoin for approximately US$62 million.

The price of Bitcoin fell below $18,000 on June 18. Bitcoin was trading for $20,562.66 as of this writing.

Bitfarms is one of the first self-proclaimed Bitcoin hoarding miners to turn away from accumulating mined coins, Bloomberg reported. 

Company CEO Jeff Lucas said Bitfarms is no longer “HODLing all our daily BTC production” but remains bullish on long-term Bitcoin price appreciation. “This strategic change enables us to focus on our top priorities of maintaining our world-class mining operations and continuing to grow our business in anticipation of improved mining economics.”

As of June 20, 2022, Bitfarms said it held cash of US$42 million and 3,349 Bitcoin valued at about US$67 million at a BTC price of US$20,000. The company bought 1,000 coins five months ago at an average price of $43,200.

Large-scale miners such as Riot Blockchain Inc. and Marathon Digital Holdings Inc. can be attractive to investors who do not want to directly hold onto Bitcoin and they can serve as a proxy for coin prices, Bloomberg reported. However, mining stocks have been falling along with Bitcoin prices recently.

A long-time holder and one of the largest public miners by market cap, Riot started selling Bitcoin in April.  Core Scientific Inc., Riot and Argo Blockchain Plc have sold 2,598 coins, 250 and 427, respectively.

Bitfarms has an industrial-scale facility in Washington state, seven in Quebec and one in Paraguay.

Miners are among the biggest whales, holding around 800,000 Bitcoin, according to data from Coin Metrics. Public miners own 46,000. “If they are forced to liquidate a considerable share of these holdings, it could contribute to pushing the Bitcoin price further down,” said Jaran Mellerud, mining analyst at Arcane Crypto. 

There are about 19 million Bitcoins in existence. A maximum of 21 million Bitcoins can be mined. Bitcoin’s mining rewards are divided by two every four years, so the Bitcoin mining end date is estimated to be sometime in the year 2140.