Since the beginning of the year, digital currency exchanges have reportedly registered lower trading volumes, marking new lows that have not been recorded since 2017. Diar further notes that it has turned to be the worst period for the world’s leading crypto exchange by adjusted trading volume, Binance, as its Bitcoin (BTC)/U.S. dollar (USD) market reduced by more than 40 percent in comparison to December 2018.
As for the major American cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, its BTC/USD market is purportedly also experiencing lows which have not been seen since May 2017, at around $1 billion.
Coinbase trading volume chart. Source: Diar
OKEx trading volume chart. Source: Diar
The report follows statements made by Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao in November 2018, when he claimed that the company was not concerned over low trade volumes caused by the market slump earlier that month. Zhao then said that Binance had a tenth of the trading volume it had seen in January 2018, but was still trading far above volumes from “two or three years ago.”
In December, a report prepared by the Blockchain Transparency Institute (BTI) claimed that the majority of the top 25 BTC trading pairs listed on CoinMarketCap are based upon “grossly” inflated false volumes. “Clear evidence” of wash trading was purportedly found for such crypto exchanges as Huobi and HitBTC, “but to a lesser degree” than OKEx. BTI also analyzed Bithumb and reportedly found “a large amount” of wash trading primarily with altcoins Monero (XMR), Dash, Bitcoin Gold and ZCash (ZEC).
In January, Diar released an analysis showing that the on-chain transaction value of the third largest cryptocurrency, Ethereum (ETH), hit an all time high in December 2018, reaching 115 million. Dair stated, “In terms of transaction count on-chain the ‘super computer’ has found stability since October bobbing between 16–17 million monthly transactions.”