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Those trading crypto will often hear the term "whale" and as the name suggests it is

used to describe huge cryptocurrency holders. Those Bitcoin wallets with around $1
billion are referred to as whales. Putting any future price target on BTC is notoriously
difficult due to these whales being blamed for unexplained market phenomenon.

Per Wimmer, a former Goldman Sachs banker and the founder of Wimmer Financial
LLP, a London-based corporate-advisory firm, explains: “The crypto market is
dominated mainly by ten big whales or privates. They are massive in the market and
take up a lot space and volume so if you take the top 10 or even 50 you will have a
lot of the volume covered already. It is too easy to manipulate the market so far.”

Wimmer who has extensive connections in the family office and private capital
worlds disagrees with the widespread rumors that institutional players are entering
the space. Due to the increase in crypto crime and exchange hackings resulting in
millions being stolen this has put institutional investors off.

He adds, “Crypto is very niche. It is here to stay and remain for a considerable
amount of time as a niche [investment]. There is a degree of validity about crypto. I
like the fact it is intimidating governments. I think it is great to have that aspect of it.”

Price Manipulation
There are many trading manoeuvres Bitcoin whales will use to profit, such as the
trading tactic commonly called the "rinse and repeat cycle.” This is when a trader or
whale with huge holdings starts selling bitcoins lower than the market rate which
causes a panic sell off by small-time traders. The whale will then have sold just
below the current market value and enough to watch panic ensue. Then the whale
waits and watches the panic selling take place until the Bitcoin prices reach a new
low. This is the time when the whales quickly scoop up more Bitcoins hence the term
'rinse' and then ‘repeat.’

André Bruckmann, the founder of Mycro explains, “Price manipulations at Bitcoin are
extremely expensive due to its liquidity, essentially benefiting no one. For example, if
a large Bitcoin holder sells large quantities of BTC, the price will only fall if it is
placed at the market price and this will lose money. The same applies if a large
investor places a large buy order for BTC at the market price - the price rises and he
buys at too high a price. Large volumes are usually settled OTC and this does not
affect the price on exchanges at all.”

Charles Hoskinson, the founder of cryptocurrency Cardano (ADA) and the CEO of
IOHK says: “The thing about our [crypto] industry is that it tends to move in spurts. It
kind of spikes up, dies down and stays flat for a long period of time. Then there’s
another spike and its boom time again. Regardless of when you come in there is
always going to be spikes.”

According to Hoskinson, the next spurt will come from institutional money and the
dawn of security token offerings. “The really smart money is aware that the market is
not yet stable. It is not at the level of maturity to support institutional surge. Within the
next 12 to 24 months I think the environment will be ready for institutional money to
enter and it will enter with a toe in the pool.” adds Hoskinson.

In this current state prices are open to manipulation and with an unregulated crypto
market many institutional investors are watching from the sidelines.