Crypto slip while stocks hold steady for end-of-year rally

Down trend market graph with crypto bitcoin and ethereum logos in the middle.

Crypto prices experienced a decline on Tuesday but are still on track to conclude the year with significant gains. Meanwhile, stock markets have maintained their upward momentum during the holiday period.

Bitcoin and ether faltered Tuesday, losing 3% and 2%, respectively. Bitcoin (BTC) remains up over the month, posting a 13% gain in the past 30 days at time of publication. Ether (ETH) is up close to 8% since late November.

Both assets have been on the rise since October. BTC has gained more than 50% this quarter while ETH is up close to 30%. Analysts say the end of year push is mostly attributable to continued optimism that the US Securities and Exchange Commission will soon approve a spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund, an investment vehicle traders hope will boost interest in the crypto.

The two largest cryptos are not the only digital assets ending the year with a rally. Solana (SOL) is up more than 1,000% year-to-date. Even after the token dipped Tuesday to around $112 after nearly hitting $125 Monday. JTO, the Jito governance token launched on Solana earlier this month, may be down around 42% from its all-time high. But still remains up close to 50% since its debut price.

Stocks were fairly flat but still in the green Tuesday, leaving analysts speculating if there could be steam left in equities’ fourth quarter rally. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indexes are poised to end 2023 higher. Posting gains of around 25% and 45%, respectively, year-to-date.

Hope that the Federal Reserve will cut rates three times in 2024 fueled share prices, analysts say, and if all goes according to plan, stocks could be set up for another successful year. Futures markets anticipate the first cut of 25 basis points will come in March 2024, according to data from CME Group.

“The late-2023 equity rally powered ahead to start last week as some less-hawkish Fed commentary helped solidify expectations for a soft landing as fixed income traders added to dovish policy bets,” Tom Essaye, founder of Sevens Report Research, said.