Deutsche Bank Survey Predicts BTC to Drop Below $20K by End 2024

Out of the 2,000 participants that took part in the survey, 42% expect Bitcoin (BTC) to completely vanish in the coming years.

At the moment, the crypto market is experiencing a blend of skepticism and cautious optimism, which is evident in the recent downturn in Bitcoin's value after the launch of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the United States. Despite initial excitement, investor sentiment has turned bleak, with a number of investors expecting Bitcoin's value to drop and questioning its longevity as regulatory crackdowns continue.

Spot Bitcoin ETFs have seen record outflows, particularly affecting Grayscale Investments' Bitcoin Trust ETF, despite overall positive trends since their inception. Industry experts and companies like Tesla, however, remain bullish on BTC’s long-term outlook, expecting huge amounts of capital inflows into ETFs.

Investor Sentiment Turns Bleak After ETF Launch

After the recent launch of spot exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the United States, Bitcoin (BTC) has seen a pretty noticeable drop in value. This downturn in the crypto king’s price comes despite the initial enthusiasm surrounding the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs, which were expected to bring mainstream investment into the sector by allowing investors to gain exposure to Bitcoin without actually owning the cryptocurrency directly.

According to a survey conducted by Deutsche Bank, involving 2,000 consumers from the U.S., U.K., and Europe, the outlook for Bitcoin is pessimistic among retail investors. The findings reveal that over one-third of the respondents anticipate that Bitcoin's value could plunge below $20,000 by the end of the year.

Moreover, the sentiment towards the longevity of Bitcoin is also bleak, with 42% of participants expecting the cryptocurrency to vanish in the coming years, compared to 39% who believe it will persist.

The survey also ended up highlighting a much broader concern about the stability of the cryptocurrency market, with more than half of those surveyed expressing fears of a major cryptocurrency collapse in the next two years. These apprehensions are very likely fueled by previous incidents, like the fall of the crypto exchange FTX in 2022 and the collapse of the stablecoin terraUSD (UST), coupled with the ongoing regulatory crackdown in the U.S.

Additionally, the Deutsche Bank report points out a large gap in the understanding of cryptocurrency, with two-thirds of consumers admitting to having little or no knowledge of digital assets. These numbers suggest that the crypto winter may still be far from over, and reflects a cautious or even skeptical approach towards the future of cryptos like Bitcoin in the face of regulatory uncertainties and past market issues.

Record Outflows Hit Bitcoin ETFs

To add even more uncertainty, spot Bitcoin ETFs experienced a record single-day net outflow of $158 million on Wednesday. This downturn was the third consecutive day of net outflows, contrasting sharply with the initial enthusiasm that greeted the launch of these funds earlier in January.

Grayscale Investments' Bitcoin Trust ETF (GBTC) was hit particularly hard, losing about $429 million, overshadowing the inflows seen by other funds like BlackRock's iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT), which attracted $66 million, albeit at a reduced pace from previous days. Fidelity Investments' Wise Origin Bitcoin Fund (FBTC) led the pack with an inflow of $126 million.

On the bright side, the overall picture since the launch of these ETFs on Jan. 11 shows a more positive trend, with net inflows totaling $824 million, although this figure is a bit skewed by the massive outflows from the higher-priced GBTC. When excluding GBTC, the inflows into the ETFs reach an impressive $5.2 billion.

Experts in the field, including David Lawant of FalconX and Matt Hougan of Bitwise, suggest that while the current trend of heavy outflows from GBTC and the fluctuating inflows into funds like IBIT and FBTC may continue in the short term, the medium to long-term outlook is still bullish. They predict that the market will eventually stabilize, with spot Bitcoin ETFs expected to attract large amounts of capital, potentially reaching $55 billion in net inflows within their first five years.

This perspective is shared by 21Shares President Ophelia Snyder, who argues that the current focus on short-term flow dynamics is misplaced. Snyder believes that investor adoption of spot Bitcoin ETFs will be more gradual, with many starting with small amounts before increasing their investments over time. This could suggest that while the current market movements may seem very dramatic, they are likely just early fluctuations in a market that is still finding its footing.

No Bitcoin Buys or Sells for Tesla in Q4 2023

Meanwhile, Elon Musk seems pretty confident in BTC’s potential. Tesla has maintained its Bitcoin holdings, according to the company’s latest earnings report for the fourth quarter of 2023. The report excluded any mention of Bitcoin transactions, indicating that the company neither bought nor sold any Bitcoin during the last quarter of the year.

Currently, Tesla holds 9,720 Bitcoins, securing its position as the third-largest publicly traded company in terms of Bitcoin holdings, only trailing behind MicroStrategy and Marathon Digital Holdings, according to Bitcoin Treasuries data. This status comes despite Tesla's last eyebrow-raising transaction involving Bitcoin dating back to the second quarter of 2022, when it reduced its Bitcoin holdings by 75%, selling off $936 million worth of Bitcoin. Since then, Tesla has not engaged in any Bitcoin transactions for six consecutive quarters.

Tesla's journey with Bitcoin began in 2021 with a bold investment of $1.5 billion. The company even briefly accepted Bitcoin as payment for its vehicles, a move that was later reversed within the same year. Tesla pointed towards environmental concerns for this decision considering the notorious carbon footprint associated with Bitcoin mining and transactions, which contradicted the company's sustainability ethos.