According to data from Skew Analytics, aggregated open interest for Bitcoin futures surpassed $5 Billion on February 14, and is currently sitting at an all-time high. Open interest refers to the total number of outstanding contracts that have yet to be settled, while the aggregated open interest metric sums up the open interests across all major futures exchanges. Aggregated open interest for Bitcoin futures has been on a sharp uptrend in 2020, as it started the year peaking just over $2 Billion.
As of February 18, BitMEX had the largest open interest, though BitMEX’s dominance in the Bitcoin futures market has subsided over the past several months as the exchange now accounts for approx. 30% of the total open interest, down from 44% in November. Chinese exchange OKEx is currently the second most popular Bitcoin futures exchange, followed by Huobi. CME came in to the fifth spot globally.
Overall, the recent sharp rise in the aggregate open interest for Bitcoin futures signals that institutions are paying close attention to Bitcoin. The rise in aggregate open interest indicates that more institutional capital is flowing into the market, with traders expecting a near-term rise in Bitcoin’s volatility. Regardless, this is certainly a trend to follow closely as the coming weeks and months progress.