"One of the things I was hearing all the time in the banking world was" OK, but this bitcoins deal has no intrinsic value, "said Ambre Soubiran, CEO of the market data start-up company. cryptocurrency Kaiko. .
"And that's something I obviously totally disagree with," she continued. "How can you say that a system allowing the transfer without permission and a decentralized and secure way to digitally transfer the property (has no value)? This system and the fact that it has been running for 10 years has value – and that's the intrinsic value to me. "
Soubiran spoke with CoinDesk for the latest episode of Bitcoin Macro, a podcast series featuring speakers and themes from the upcoming CoinDesk Invest: NYC conference on Tuesday, November 12.
The event will explore the role of bitcoin in the financial system, which will find its place in the global macroeconomic community. No one considers an ignorable niche anymore, more people are asking: is bitcoin a macro asset? Is this an asset? How will it behave during the next recession?
In this episode of Bitcoin Macro, Nolan Bauerle, Head of Strategy for CoinDesk, talks with Soubiran about:
- The "macro" origins of bitcoin.
- Changes in bitcoin storytelling over time.
- Why the ICO boom has been a crucial moment for foreign markets to focus more on the crypto-currency space.
- Why is the role of Bitcoin as a refuge contextual for local politics and economy?
- Why does the behavior of HODLing show the promise of Bitcoin as a future refuge.
- The immediate risks for Bitcoin in the case of a global recession.
- That suggests the data of the order book on the state of the markets.
Listen to the podcast here or read the full transcript below.
Nolan Bauerle: (00:09)
Welcome to Bitcoin Macro, a contextual podcast produced as part of the CoinDesk Invest: New York conference in November. I am your host, Nolan Bauerle. The podcast and the event explore the intersection of Bitcoin and global macroeconomics with the perspectives of some of the world's leading thinkers in finance, crypto and beyond.
Nolan Bauerle: (00:34)
Welcome to our podcast pop-up around Bitcoin in the world today. I am accompanied by Amber Soubiran de Kaiko. Amber, (foreign language 00:00:44) we could do it in French, but I would say today to make sure that our audience is as wide as possible, we will keep everything in English. So welcome from Paris.
Amber Soubiran: (00:55)
Thank you Nolan. Thank you very much.
Nolan Bauerle: (00:57)
I am pleased to welcome you here and you will be the last person we will be recording around this series of speakers and contributors to our session. And you will be the first internationalist. It is therefore the first person to bring an international touch to the Bitcoin podcast in the world. We had mostly Americans up to now. I guess Meltem (Demirors) can count as a non-American, but since she's also American, we're not going that far.
Amber Soubiran: (01:24)
Very well thank you. I am blessed.
Nolan Bauerle: (01:27)
Well, we are happy and happy to welcome you. So let's jump to Ambre. Right now, of course, we've seen some big articles on some kind of macro turbulence, so a lot of people are talking about it. The evolution of the global economy is changing dramatically, especially with the trade war between the United States and China. Of course, all the difficulties faced by European banks. And in all this context, you work of course in the world of bitcoin. How do you see bitcoin behave in this environment? Do you really see it going beyond what has been interesting for technicians who want to become a real macro asset?
Amber Soubiran: (02:10)
Yes. So I think it's a great question and we see how all versions of bitcoins have evolved over time. I think it's really interesting to look at this now from a more macro perspective and say that we're seeing more and more institutional will and institutional demand for Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency world, the broader spectrum, but in the context of bitcoin. So, let's think, take a step back and say, but what is a macro asset? Macroeconomic assets are thus assets such as indices, rates, affects, sovereign bonds, mainly due to geopolitical and macroeconomic factors. And they usually move with large market movements in a relatively predictable way. They therefore have a consistent correlation with typical risk assets.
Amber Soubiran: (03:01)
So, if we take this and we say, okay, now what is Bitcoin? At first, it's interesting because it was created as a more technical system, as a technical solution. However, the initial context in which it was created was at the time of a fairly severe economic downturn, just after the subprime mortgage crisis, which had caused the banks bailout and upset the financial markets. At the time, it was supposed to become an alternative to the financial system that created its own crisis in a certain way. That's why I think it's interesting because we're saying that it went from the initial electronic peer-to-peer electronic payment system to a financial asset, but that it was originally designed as a reaction to this financial system. This has therefore changed significantly over the last 10 years.
Amber Soubiran: (03:51)
And when I talk to investors and people who are trying to put bitcoin in a box, I find it interesting, it's like this giant disco ball spinning and every time you say, okay, it's a motto and you're trying to put it a template or an evaluation framework, it just does not work. And then you say, okay, it's actually a technology, and then you compare it to certain months and it does not work anymore. D & # 39; agreement. Is it a commodity? And there is like, it changes and changes constantly.
Amber Soubiran: (04:17)
So the question is, if we look at bitcoin from the point of view of financial assets, I think it's important to keep in mind the size and the numbers, because this has been seen as an alternative to a financial system in somehow down. So we could say that it is a decorrelated macro asset. However, he is still too small. Although it's great where we come from, it has grown incredibly fast in 10 years, but it's still pretty small.
Amber Soubiran: (04:48)
So we are talking about a market capitalization of $ 170 billion, while gold, and I am trying to look for the most recent market capitalization of gold. I've found everything from five to eleven billion dollars. But we are talking about a significant difference in order of magnitude. Same thing with the volume traded, right? We are talking about $ 5 billion over the last 24 hours and gold is around $ 250 billion. We are still talking about important orders of magnitude. And if bitcoin were to be a real macro asset, it could be used as a hedge or a risk for the traditional system or the economic crisis. Well, it's still too small to do it, I think.
Nolan Bauerle: (05:35)
So I'm glad you mentioned the comparison of gold. For Invest, we were trying to start a debate, let's say, for next week's event, November 12, and we're going to say you heard somewhere in between, and I think, you said between 6,000 and 12,000 billions of dollars.
Amber Soubiran: (05:52)
Nolan Bauerle: (05:52)
Eleven billion dollars? So I kind of opted for the $ 8 trillion and we actually put the title of the race at $ 9 billion. Who will be the first, bitcoin or gold? To sort it out, because if bitcoin continues to behave this way, it may grow much faster.
Amber Soubiran: (06:12)
Yes. Yes, absolutely.
Nolan Bauerle: (06:14)
And I'm glad you brought that up as well by making sure everyone understands the size of this market right now. Because if bitcoin has to be uncorrelated, say golden digital jurisdiction, this allows a non-national state to possess the attributes that could be negotiated without the mismanagement or perhaps political decisions taken that might actually take place. ; scale. in this way and become something totally different. But we are not there yet, that's what you say. We are not there yet.
Amber Soubiran: (06:45)
Yes, absolutely. And I think there's something really interesting when you think of it as a financial asset or a gold, because in fact, bitcoin is not directly subject to interest rates or any form of currency devaluation. It's decentralized, so it's not dictated by any particular government. And you can not have a political force coming in and creating market volatility. So, in a way, it attracts investors because of this decentralized aspect.
Amber Soubiran: (07:14)
On the other hand, it brings it closer to gold. However, I think we often talk about size and demand for bitcoins, we forget to think about the offer. And we have 18 million bitcoins out of a total of 21 million. there will be Bitcoin holding and a few times, this will really make Bitcoin unique in terms of financial assets.
Amber Soubiran: (07:38)
And I think it's the first financial asset for which, after one point, the supply should actually decrease. We already say that, I do not know, four of the 18 million bitcoins are lost somewhere in the blockchain because people lost their keys for reasons X, Y, Z. So the supply and the fact that it starts to diminish after a point are things that we do not really mention when we consider this a macro asset. The price may increase, which will increase the market capitalization because it is divisible and you can split bitcoins up to the new power. You can actually create value significantly. But there is this supply and this decreasing supply problem that I find interesting.
Nolan Bauerle: (08:29)
And you said earlier that it was a currency and a kind of people who were trying to define it, and that apart from what you mentioned regarding its size, many of these definitions come from what you look in the mirror. So we saw what the currencies were in the last two years. We look at ourselves in the mirror and we tell ourselves that it must be exactly like that. It should look like the US dollar, the euro or the yen. What would you say if … we are looking at bitcoin now, because it is so small that it has not really been able to affect the definition of a currency. Is there a possibility that during its growth, did you see a moment when it forces us to rethink and redefine some of these instruments?
Amber Soubiran: (09:09)
Yes, absolutely. I mean I really think it has already started to redefine the way we think of money in general. To think that there is now a system without permission that allows me to send a unit of account, actually bitcoin, to whom I want, when I want it, at a relatively low rate, is to redefine our way spend money. I think that's already the case. But indeed, we really went from the original type of peer to peer electronic money system, which is the original white paper presented by Satoshi 11 years ago now. It then became this story of digital money or magic money on the Internet, but it is now rarely seen as a cash payment system. Of course, an initiative such as a network has been set up to improve efficiency and use bitcoin as a currency, but its volume remains very low and is no longer really considered as money today.
Amber Soubiran: (10:08)
Then it became this private and anonymous currency, all these things dating back to a time when the institutional interest was barely existent. In fact, at the time this currency was perceived as a private and anonymous currency, I was working in the banking sector at the time and we started to argue that bitcoin was an interesting thing to look at and that they were completely, totally reluctant to the idea of anything. to do with Bitcoin. So, the institutional interest was not there yet.
Amber Soubiran: (10:37)
And then, the craze of the ICOs occurred and, when that happened, it started to arouse public interest, investors eager to make profits and funds venture capital. I mean it started to attract because it became big enough. This started to also spark the interest of the initiative more space for venture capitalists because it disrupted things.
Nolan Bauerle: (11am)
Greater tolerance for risk
Amber Soubiran: (11:01)
Yes, bigger risks. Absolutely. And they finance their projects, right? I think a lot of projects were unfortunately often fraudulent, but there were also a lot of great projects that raised money and so much more that would have allowed the game of venture capital to be played. Today, in four or three years, four years after the OIC, they are still not profitable, but totally independent and autonomous. And they grew up in very different ways. I think this creates new forms of startups that would not exist without the ICO.
Nolan Bauerle: (11:29)
Yes. And separate the quality for a minute. The mere idea that it could happen at the beginning was enough to make history.
Amber Soubiran: (11:38)
Yes, absolutely. This is what I imagine when he began to have some form of traditional adoption or, if it is not, a more general adoption of interest. And the institutional interest really began, which is interesting not with money, but with the "blockchain-not-crypto" trend. We have a new way to create these shared shared programmable databases. And it was something that was still 10 years bank, I heard a lot that bitcoin was a word that you're not supposed to pronounce, but the accounting and the database distributed were really sexy. And I guess it started to justify the more traditional interest for bitcoin in some ways. As if they liked it or not, but it justified that they could allow some resources to understand that.
Nolan Bauerle: (12:27)
Yeah. And now, we're starting to talk about global hegemonic synthetic money, I guess, that's the new slogan we're going for.
Amber Soubiran: (12:35)
Exactly. And that's exactly it. So the last point is institutional interest, it's more because we're looking at this and that's the purpose of this conversation from a more perspective, it's an uncorrelated financial asset. It's a new financial asset. It's resistant to censorship, to digital gold. We do not know what kind of financial asset it is, but we know that it is decorrelated from traditional markets. It's interesting, we can start to apply some trading strategies. We can start taking advantage, we can start doing different things on the assets that will generate returns. It's a part. And the other part is the reserve, right? It is a way to protect, derive from other types of financial assets.
Nolan Bauerle: (13:19)
So let's move on to a more specific definition or type of behavior that we see in bitcoin today, but that remains entirely related to being uncorrelated and perhaps not a victim of some political decisions made by the courts. . So, you are in Europe, you certainly have your own type of political potato right now with Brexit and what that could mean. Do you expect or have you seen bitcoin, even within these two sophisticated economies of France and England, behaving like an asset safe haven? Of course, when the vote on Brexit took place for the first time, we saw bitcoin get a price increase in 2016 and there was definitely a correlation there. Do you see anyone thinking of this in Europe? Do you see people worrying about the use of the euro and the use of bitcoin or is it not visible by all the radars in Paris and where you would see that playing as a safe haven is always in the Venezuelans of the world?
Amber Soubiran: (14:16)
Yeah. So I think you are fully aware of the question you raised and I was going to get there. I think this is definitely considered a sure asset in countries where political and economic uncertainty is greater. So when the economic situation is very unstable and I was going to talk about Venezuela and Argentina, even about Hong Kong recently, is not it? Hong Kong is generally one of the most stable and one of the best places to live from an economic point of view, as it is experiencing political dysfunctions and many mass events. In fact, if you look interestingly at volumes on the local bitcoin, which is a peer-to-peer exchange, volumes have increased dramatically in all these countries.
Amber Soubiran: (14:59)
So, I suppose, and that's also if we look back in the history and the beginnings of bitcoin, it was in 2013 and 2014, at the time, it was Ecuador and all those countries , like more Central American countries, which were also behind the adoption. So, from a security point of view, I guess the question is where you go and where you hide where you do not know where to go. Like when you really think I do not trust the status quo now, where am I going? And the question is whether Bitcoin is a good place for that. So when things go wrong, there are only a limited number of things you can do and a number of assets totally isolated from the rest of the system. And it's interesting that way. I do not think at this stage that people have a deep distrust of the euro or at least that it is not a theme yet.
Amber Soubiran: (15:51)
However, I read something that seemed really great on HODLers and if you look more at the data on the channel, you see that people who had accounts have bitcoins that remained on their wallets and even any l & # 39; year. To date, and even the peaks of recent years, you have people who have not done anything, who have not sold anything or who have not done anything in the last two or five years. Which means that these people, as there are two things. You have to give up what you already have to invest in Bitcoin or hide, but you already have Bitcoin and you do not want to get out of it and you do not want to use that existing gain, which is already on the table. If you have been a holder for five years, you make money. However people are HODling, right?
Amber Soubiran: (16:38)
So, there is this idea. I do not think that in Europe, people are fleeing the euro to invest in cryptography because they still consider it a safe haven. This could happen if political uncertainty increased. However, you certainly see that, in the most shaken economies, it is a way to prevent your government from controlling its own wealth. Right?
Nolan Bauerle: (17:03)
Yeah. I noticed on LocalBitcoins, I did not check recently, but during the summer in Hong Kong, as you said, it was trading around $ 100 worth of premium, which meant that the appetite was beautiful and there for some reason. But there was an appetite for sure.
Amber Soubiran: (17:19)
Absolutely. It's really interesting. When you look at prices in different markets, you know that we cover about 100 exchanges. Thus, local markets, Philippine markets and Mexican markets are even smaller. You really notice a difference in price depending on the situation in the country. I think that there has recently been a 1% price difference in Hong Kong and China, which means that 1% may seem minimal, but as you said, when you specify it mostly at over eight thousand dollars, it is actually 80 dollars, it is a lot of money. .
Amber Soubiran: (17:50)
As for the shelters, there is also a calm, although it's a lot more, you know, the bitcoin is now in I do not mean everyone in mind, but close. However, there is still a lot of misunderstanding about what it is. And one of the things I was hearing all the time in the banking world was "OK, but this bitcoin business has no intrinsic value." This is something I obviously totally disagree with, and how can you assert that a system allowing the transfer without permission and a decentralized and secure way to digitally transfer ownership, just like this system and the fact that 'it works and it works for 10 years has value and it's intrinsic value to me.
Amber Soubiran: (18:34)
But it's something because there are so many different stories and misunderstandings, if an exchange is hacked and people understand that bitcoin has been hacked, there is still too much misunderstanding, what which prevents people from seeing bitcoin as a course. just because you do not know what you are going for. It's still muddy waters for most people.
Nolan Bauerle: (18:56)
They believe that exposure to bitcoins is risky and not a protection against jurisdictional risks.
Amber Soubiran: (19:04)
Yes exactly. I think there is a lot of misunderstanding that I do not really know how it works, so I'm scared. And the reason they are scared is because they have control, do not they? This is the first time that, even if you do not understand, I'm sure you just said that Joe in the street does not necessarily understand the operation of the central bank and even their own bank. The financial system is complex, right? But because you have intermediaries and people who are theoretically responsible for your money, it's not that scary. And it's been working forever too and that's how they grew up. So it's not the same to tell them, you have this new system that is transforming the way we represent the property and the way we store value. It means that you have the power to come back to individuals, we question a lot of things and, because they do not understand it, they simply do not want to go.
Nolan Bauerle: (19:53)
And when you mentioned the HODL waves, of course, the HODL waves are HODLing, and then the data that accompanies the analysis of a HODLing, which are the HODL waves. Can you really define the time preference or the current trade? So you come back to the crisis, for example, the people who made this bet, they bet against American housing. It was difficult for them to hold and have a belief about this trade throughout the IDF and the people who say that housing in the United States is never going to collapse. What are you doing this bed? And of course, if you read the big short film and all those other analysts who have told the story of what happened, then, of course, a lot of people are choking. They had weak knees and split. So, when you look at the HODL waves, does that really tell you that people believe that this safe haven behavior will inevitably occur or at least they prevent it, and that's the instrument to use to prevent that this does happen? l & # 39; future?
Amber Soubiran: (20:51)
So that's an excellent question, and I think it's a very good signal that people who have made significant gains are not interested in getting out of this system. Right? So that's the first thing to do. Then the second thing is what would show a real influence on the shelter story if you have a lot of new influxes of people who actually buy and hold. And the truth is that today, bitcoin is still a very speculative asset and most of the volumes we see are short-term traders. This is not a question.
Amber Soubiran: (21:26)
However, I mean there is a reason people call, bet or speculate. The reason people speculate on this is, hopefully, to speculate that it will become a safe haven. And that's really the … if we think a recession would happen tomorrow, is the system strong enough to really be a safe haven and have a lot of capital in the bitcoin ecosystem and the keep then? It's a matter of bitcoin space maturity from now on. However, people are also negotiating it because they think it will increase, right? And if they think they will benefit from it, it is because they hope it will become a macro asset or a safe haven.
Nolan Bauerle: (22:19)
The next question I had, and you mentioned the recession, was what was happening to Bitcoin during a recession. And what you are saying is that it is possible and many people believe that it will be decorrelated, will behave differently and will be a bulwark against the recession. It's sort of there.
Amber Soubiran: (22:35)
Yeah. So it's a bit more complicated, I suppose. And that really comes down to what I said about maturity. It is generally from the asset management perspective that, historically, in a period of great crisis, during the 2007-2008 crisis, correlations only go to the sidelines when things really turn out. vinegar, because people are simply trying to save what they can.
Amber Soubiran: (23:02)
So the question is: will it be the same for Bitcoin? And of course, the whole community of more and more blockchain and believers we are part of would say that a recession would benefit Bitcoin. But the truth is really in a crisis and when investors want to reduce their risk, bitcoin is still considered a risky asset. We can believe what we want. Unfortunately, it's still a risky asset.
Amber Soubiran: (23:27)
And it's a matter of trust. And Bitcoin is all about trust, right? The value of the big book is because there is a consensus mechanism and everyone is committed to trusting it. So we can just try to imagine scenarios, right? There is a crisis and investors are looking to move their money and are considering bitcoin. And at this point, the system is overloaded, transaction fees are skyrocketing, everyone is trying to protect their own interests. (inaudible 00:23:55) will also take transactions that have higher transaction costs. And so there is some kind of problem that occurs at that point or a bottleneck in, I actually want to have my money in the bitchain blockchain.
Amber Soubiran: (24:10)
So the cryptocurrency infrastructure is still under construction. And then, would that support that? How would the world react to soaring transaction costs? People say, oh, it's really very volatile. We thought that the price of the transaction was low, but in reality this is not the case. It's a crisis, volatility will increase. How do people react? Right?
Amber Soubiran: (24:31)
And the second thing, in this context, is that everyone is scared and you have a main player in the cryptocurrency who has become thug or who goes bankrupt or what's going on, what's going on it if a bank is managed? And at this point, everyone is trying to protect their bitcoins and everyone removes all currencies in exchange. Because exchanges contribute a lot to traditional adoption by providing a large number of services and improving their child care services, they are becoming safer. But I doubt that tomorrow if I withdraw every cent of … I do not want to name exchanges, but if everyone tries to withdraw their funds, it is a modern or encrypted version of a bank. Qu'est-ce qui se passe ensuite?
Ambre Soubiran: (25:16)
Et si cela se produisait parce que les gens essayaient simplement de protéger leurs pièces, l’un des grands échanges venait de faire faillite et que cela créait une perte totale de confiance dans l’écosystème, et la confiance était la force qui fondait ce réseau. Donc dans ce cas, que se passe-t-il? Et curieusement, si vous regardez les 10 dernières années, le meilleur environnement pour le bitcoin, et le même pour les actifs les plus risqués, est celui où la volatilité du marché est relativement décroissante, les politiques monétaires assez accommodantes et les rendements faibles. , faible croissance économique. Et dans ce sens, cela rend les actifs relativement risqués plus intéressants. Mais honnêtement, à ce stade, je ne pense pas que l’espace bitcoin soit suffisamment mature pour gérer réellement un ralentissement économique mondial de l’ampleur de ce que nous avons vu il ya 10 ans.
Nolan Bauerle: (26:18)
La sophistication de la plate-forme n’est pas encore tout à fait là.
Ambre Soubiran: (26:22)
Et l'irrationalité des joueurs, non? Parce que cela concerne tous les traders à très court terme, rien ne voudrait … comme si les frais de transaction montaient en flèche et il y a une idée de ce genre que les gens vont prendre des risques et voir ce qui se passe. Mais cela signifie beaucoup moins de volume. Et si vous avez beaucoup moins de volume, vous avez des carnets de commandes complètement épuisés. Tout le monde qui dit veut acheter du bitcoin, d'accord, alors vous avez une énorme pression d'achat sur les carnets de commandes et il n'y a pas de marché, personne ne veut vendre. Comment ça marche? Sur un marché qui pèse 170 milliards de capital et dont le volume réel est en réalité beaucoup plus petit. Que se passera-t-il si tout le monde veut acheter et qu’il n’ya pas de preneur de risque et qu’il n’ya personne de l’autre côté. Vous avez le carnet de commandes qui va être complètement déséquilibré. Cela va creuser les écarts et les gens finiront par acheter à des prix absurdes. Vous aurez donc des preneurs, mais le système sera complètement secoué. Et je ne sais pas si cela peut absorber une crise durable.
Nolan Bauerle: (27:22)
Vous avez donc beaucoup parlé de la sophistication des utilisateurs. Vous avez mentionné la tolérance croissante au risque. Les types de personnes qui achètent changent. Qu'avez-vous vu à Paris face à ce marché sophistiqué, disons six mois? Avez-vous constaté un changement d'opinion à propos de bitcoin ou s'agit-il à peu près du même récit et il ne s'est pas passé grand-chose ces derniers temps?
Ambre Soubiran: (27:49)
Il y a clairement beaucoup plus de tolérance, de compréhension et une volonté accrue d’allouer des ressources et de consacrer du temps à tirer profit de cet écosystème. J'étais hier à Stuttgart en Allemagne, où tous les échanges allemands s'intéressent vraiment à cela. En Suisse, il existe de nombreuses initiatives des principaux acteurs. Je parle des plates-formes d’échanges numériques suisses (inaudible 00:28:15). Stuttgart Boerse lance une plateforme de trading sur laquelle les utilisateurs peuvent acheter et vendre des actifs cryptographiques.
Ambre Soubiran: (28:22)
Donc, je pense vraiment une volonté réelle à la fois de réglementer et d’accepter et de comprendre et également de soutenir les développements de la réglementation plus européenne. Je pense qu'ils constatent également beaucoup d'intérêt pour le… plus essentiellement, et je m'éloigne à peine d'une seconde de Bitcoin, mais de tous les avantages de la blockchain en ce qui concerne la désintermédiation du financement des PME, par exemple. Donc, il est clair que la blockchain, et non la narration bitcoin, a permis à un moment donné de dépasser les limitations spécifiques qui étaient en quelque sorte de vieux fantômes du bitcoin est un moyen de financer l’industrie pharmaceutique. Il y avait ceux qui ressemblaient à des blocages mentaux où les acteurs institutionnels voyaient le bitcoin comme une chose avec laquelle ils ne voulaient rien avoir à faire. Et ensuite, ils se rendent compte que oh, la blockchain est vraiment fantastique et qu’ils reviennent à bitcoin, affirmant que bitcoin est en fait une nouvelle classe d’actifs.
Nolan Bauerle: (29:28)
Semblable à ce que nous voyons avec la Balance et Facebook.
Ambre Soubiran: (29:31)
Oui, je dirais que la Balance n'est pas vraiment une crypto-monnaie. Je suppose que ce n’est peut-être pas le sujet pour le moment, mais oui, vous avez raison. C'est exactement ça. Cela amène l’adoption traditionnelle à la blockchain. Why is blockchain, why is it relevant and important? And then once people have accepted that blockchain actually is wonderful and important, bitcoin is the best expression of blockchain. And so then you go back to bitcoin. But it’s this kind of acceptance phase that people need to go through. And I guess that’s what happening now with Libra. It’s what’s happening with Chinese governments.
Nolan Bauerle: (30:05)
So now with what you do at Kaiko, it’s really a data-focused company. Can you tell me a bit about a data point or a way of seeing data recently that’s got you really excited and has brought certain clarity to you and you think is useful for the ecosystem?
Ambre Soubiran: (30:24)
Yeah, absolutely. So it’s actually something I’m going to present next week at Consensus: Invest in New York. But one of the things, so at Kaiko, we only do market data. So we monitor in real-time and we’ve been doing that since 2013, price and volume on exchanges. So we look at every single order that is placed on markets and we look at every single transaction that is generated from a buy order and sold or matching on an exchange. So recently we’ve been looking more and more into order book data, and order books in some way represent the health, the strength and the structure of the markets. That’s what I meant earlier. If everybody starts deciding that they want to transfer older financial wealth and bitcoin and we end up with a completely unbalanced order book because you’ll have huge amounts of buy order and then no demand to absorb that.
Ambre Soubiran: (31:18)
So we’ve been looking at that for two reasons. One of them because it reflects the state of the market today. And second, because if you look at the way order books have evolved history, you also see how the market’s become more and more sophisticated. And for that we’re looking at two different data points. One of them is the market depth. And the way we define market debts is how many bitcoins are placed on the buy-side and on the sell-side for each markets, and by markets I mean for each different exchange, and what actually is the volume that is there that is at stake. How many bitcoins are people willing to buy and sell? And this is something we can see growing and I’ll show this next week.
Ambre Soubiran: (31:58)
And the other one is slippage. Slippage is really interesting, especially for investors who want to back test the strategy. It’s their free trade cost curve. It means how much percentage change am I going to get in my execution price depending on the different order sizes that I could place on percentage of the prevailing price. As in if I want to execute a 100,000 order, how much does it cost? If I want to execute a 500,000 order, how much is it going to cost? And we see that slippage these days are incredibly low. It goes down to two bips on some of the largest US exchanges for bitcoin markets. So bitcoin is by far the most efficient market. Slippage on bitcoin can go down to one to two bips, whereas it’s somewhere between five and 10 bips for Ethereum for example, just as a horizon point.
Nolan Bauerle: (32:50)
So the buyers themselves are … there’s a lot of price discovery and they know if they’re getting a deal or not.
Ambre Soubiran: (32:57)
Absolutely. So price discovery is super efficient. Prices are very tight. We even see some markets where you have crosses where there’s so much buy and sell demand that people place orders above or below market price depending on if they’re buying or selling. So looking at order book data shows very, very exciting insights to understand the space and to just monitor it in real-time, right? You can see exchanges, and by exchanges I mean just markets on bitcoin, becoming more and more efficient just because there’s more and more price takers and price sellers on each side.
Nolan Bauerle: (33:30)
Interesting stuff. Interesting insights into the buyers and sellers and the market in general. So if you’d like to hear more of this type of content, you’ll hear plenty of it next week, November 12th in New York City where Ambre will give a more in-depth presentation on this material. Thanks again for listening and look out for our next pop up podcast coming sometime in the next month.
Nolan Bauerle: (33:58)
Appreciated this episode? I would personally like to invite you to come to Invest: New York in November. The event presents not only the speaker you just heard, but also a whole range of extraordinary thinkers. Go to coindesk.com and click on events or simply follow the link in the description. Thanks for listening and see you in New York City.
Kaiko CEO Ambre Soubiran image via CoinDesk archives