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Analyzing the Top Performers in Crypto: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Stocks, and ETFs in 2023

In 2023, investors observed remarkable gains in various sectors linked to the cryptocurrency domain, particularly witnessing higher returns than those exclusively holding the primary crypto assets.

Bitcoin surged by over 150% during the year, while Ethereum observed an impressive nearly 100% price increase. However, the performance of stocks and ETFs correlated with the crypto space surpassed these gains.

Coinbase, MicroStrategy, and the Mining Boom

Coinbase’s stock skyrocketed by approximately 420% in 2023, notwithstanding the ongoing legal tussle with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The company’s diversification into subscription-based revenues, including stablecoins, custodial fees, and blockchain rewards, marked a strategic shift towards a comprehensive “crypto super app.”

MicroStrategy, notable for its significant Bitcoin purchases, saw its share price surge by around 338% in 2023. With ownership of 189,150 bitcoins, the company exemplifies its close ties to Bitcoin’s performance.

Mining companies experienced considerable stock price hikes throughout the year. Marathon Digital, the largest North American miner by hashrate, led the charge with a 643% increase in stock price, closely followed by Bitfarms and CleanSpark, up by 610% and 458%, respectively. Riot Platforms and Hut 8 also witnessed substantial surges in their stock prices, with Hut 8 soaring over 1,500% post-merger with US Bitcoin Corp.

Exploring Crypto ETF Performance

While awaiting the SEC’s decision on spot Bitcoin ETFs, funds holding these crypto stocks reaped substantial rewards during the crypto rally in 2023.

The Valkyrie Bitcoin Miners ETF (WGMI) emerged as the top-performing non-leveraged ETF, boasting approximately 400% returns. Other crypto-related funds like VanEck Digital Transformation ETF (DAPP), Global X Blockchain ETF (BKCH), Invesco Alerian Galaxy Crypto Economy ETF (SATO), and Bitwise Crypto Industry Innovators ETF (BITQ) also saw returns surpassing 300%.

BITQ, crossing $150 million in assets under management, trails the largest crypto-related equity fund, Amplify Transformational Data Sharing ETF (BLOK), which stands at about $1.1 billion in assets. BLOK achieved approximately 113% returns year-to-date.

In the realm of crypto funds holding Bitcoin futures contracts, ProShares Bitcoin Strategy (BITO) stands out with $1.6 billion in assets under management, mirroring Bitcoin’s performance closely at about 147% returns year-to-date.

Looking Ahead

With the SEC’s impending decision on the Ark 21Shares Bitcoin ETF expected by January 10, analysts anticipate potential approval or denial of similar proposals in the coming period. This decision could significantly impact the trajectory of crypto-related stocks and ETFs in the market.

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