March 12 was one of the most extremely bearish days in crypto history, with most major cryptocurrencies declining over 50%, and Bitcoin (BTC) plunging below $4,000, near the bear market lows from late 2018. However, apparently Coinbase saw record amounts of crypto purchases, as users jumped at the opportunity to buy crypto at firesale rates.
In the 48 hours during and immediately after the crypto price crash, compared to the yearly average there was a 5X increase in crypto and cash deposits, a 2X increase is new user signups, a 3X increase in the number of users trading, and a 6X increase in total volume.
However, the most important piece of data is that customers bought 67% more crypto than they sold, up from the average of 60%. This indicates a significant increase in buying, and apparently Bitcoin (BTC) was the favorite. Indeed, the Bitcoin (BTC) buying ratio increased 13%. Ethereum (ETH) was also a popular choice, with its buying ratio increasing 9%. Beyond that, Ripple (XRP), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC), Tezos (XTZ), and Chainlink (LINK) also saw a surge in buying activity.
Essentially, crypto users collectively recognized that crypto prices were too low, and jumped at the opportunity to buy before prices went back up again. Indeed, Coinbase notes that the crash was due to liquidity drying up in the presence of over leveraged derivatives bets, so the crash was mostly from derivatives exchanges experiencing cascading liquidations, rather than fundamentals.
As Warren Buffett said “Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful.”