JPMorgan sounds alarm over ‘frothy’ crypto markets after August boom

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JPMorgan analysts have warned clients that cryptocurrency markets are looking frothy after the August trading boom saw spot market trading volumes once again top $1 trillion. 

In a note to clients reported by Markets Insider, the JPMorgan analysts suggested valuations in crypto markets, especially altcoins and NFTs, are getting too high.

“The share of altcoins looks rather elevated by historical standards and in our opinion it is more likely to be a reflection of froth and retail investor ‘mania’ rather than a reflection of a structural uptrend.”

The bank’s analysts noted that altcoin trading now accounts for about 33% of the total cryptocurrency market, up from just 22% at the beginning of August.

Although many crypto traders are delighted at the price increases, the analysts believe the apparent uptick in interest may not be substantial enough to be maintained for an extended period of time.

The analysts also highlighted the net inflow of retail investments to US stocks, which stood at $13B through August with help from Reddit inspired day traders, following a record high of $16B in July. They believe the buying frenzy spilled over into NFTs, DeFI and smart contract platforms including Solana, Binance Coin and Cardano.

Spot investors have pushed several major altcoins well above their previous all-time highs. Cardano (ADA) traded above $3 for the first time today and Solana (SOL) is up over 400% since the beginning of August, according to CoinMarketCap.

Bitcoin has also shown tremendous strength by rallying back above $50K for the first time since May, 2021.

Related: Surge in activity and token prices show ‘DeFi Summer 2.0’ already started

Meanwhile OpenSea, one of the largest NFT marketplaces, saw trading volume on its platform increase over 76,000% since the beginning of 2021. Trading volume surpassed $4B by August 31, according to DappRadar.

DappRadar figures for OpenSea in August

Dune Analytics figures shows that trading volume of DeFi coins increased 152% month-on-month in August, bringing total trading volume past $11B. Several trading platforms and DeFi protocols reached milestones, with Uniswap surpassing Coinbase’s daily trading volume on August 30 and Synthetix regaining $1B in total value locked (TVL).