Over half of that stems from two companies — derivatives giant BitMEX and crypto exchange OKEx — both of which now have open interest in excess of $1 billion.
Bitcoin futures are fast becoming the darling of institutional investors as open interest spikes 60% since the start of 2020.
Data from monitoring resource Skew Markets shows that open interest across major futures offerings from exchanges now stands at more than $4 billion.
BitMEX, OKEx futures open interest passes $1B
Bitcoin futures open interest (exchanges only).
On Monday, fellow platform Deribit confirmed month-on-month Bitcoin futures options turnover was surging 70%.
The latest data caps an extraordinary month for Bitcoin futures, which have accompanied price gains of almost 35% this year.
As Cointelegraph reported, the global volume has also expanded in recent weeks to challenge previous records. On a single day last month, futures markets exchanged more than $25 billion.
Melker: BTC move likely “significant and soon”
Now, anticipation is building for a knock-on effect to boost BTC/USD even higher as markets look likely to test $10,000.
“With Bitmex Open Interest hitting a billion, volatility is almost assuredly coming”, Cointelegraph Markets analyst Scott Melker summarized in a tweet on Sunday.
“We aren’t staying at 9400 for long. The next move should be significant and come relatively soon.”
Bulls double down on price gains
Melker is far from alone in eyeing a bullish short-term trajectory for Bitcoin. The impact of May’s block reward halving — now less than 100 days away — is already a hot topic among commentators.
Thereafter, calculations point to a bull run which should take BTC/USD to $100,000 by 2022.
Speaking to Cointelegraph late last week, two well-known crypto YouTubers threw their weight behind the forecast, arguing the bull cycle which would take Bitcoin there had in fact already arrived.