One massive beneficiary of the upward trend this year in Bitcoin is long-only investors. By taking a positive view on the cryptocurrency looking into the future, they have ridden the coattails of the surge in Bitcoin's market price during 2017. One major reason behind this success in taking the long view with Bitcoin is that there is no effective way to short large amounts of Bitcoin as a bear in the market.
Why is Bitcoin hard to short?
At present, there is no easy or efficient way to short large quantities of Bitcoin. Although traders can technically try to do this at some exchanges, the liquidity and volumes are simply not enough to make it feasible. Traders can borrow Bitcoin tokens and then sell them on at certain exchanges, but only with a prior agreement in place with the original owner. There are not many exchanges you can do this at though and so the ability to properly short high amounts of Bitcoin tokens would be welcomed by many larger investors.
CME steps forward with Bitcoin futures
It would seem CME have identified this gap in the Bitcoin market. They have announced plans to launch their Bitcoin Futures market in December 2017 that would allow investors to short large volumes of Bitcoin. Interestingly, although this would be a move against the Bitcoin bulls in the market, news of CME's futures actually had a positive effect on the cryptocurrencies price after the news came out. It is thought that the launch of CME'S Futures market was seen as something that would add extra legitimacy to Bitcoin, hence the effect the news had on the general market.
If you are thinking of shorting Bitcoin yourself as a strategy, be careful! Although this new venture by CME would give investors the ability to short large amounts of Bitcoin, you would still need to be move wisely when deciding to do this, based on factual market analysis.