Long-term bitcoin holders and miners have been significant sellers in the past two weeks, with little sign of renewed demand, according to on-chain analysis firm CryptoQuant in a report shared with CoinDesk.

CryptoQuant’s data shows that whales—large holders of bitcoin—sold over $1.2 billion worth of BTC recently, likely through brokers rather than on the open market.

“Traders are not increasing their Bitcoin holdings, and large holders’ (whales) demand growth is still lacking strength,” analysts noted. “Stablecoin liquidity has continued to slow, growing at its slowest pace since November 2023.”

These traders have been reducing their holdings since BTC prices peaked over $70,000 in late May, as indicated by declining UTXO age bands tracked by CryptoQuant.

Unspent Transaction Outputs are created in every Bitcoin transaction and are used by traders to analyze buying and selling patterns. A decrease in UTXO age usually signals increased Bitcoin activity and selling, while an increase suggests more holding.

Market observers suggest that miners are shifting focus to the booming artificial intelligence sector, leading to the sale of their bitcoin rewards. Both the AI and cryptocurrency sectors rely heavily on powerful computing chips.

“One of the biggest trends since Bitcoin halving this year is that miners are increasingly moving towards the AI business,” shared Lucy Hu, senior analyst at Metalpha, a crypto fund, in a Telegram message. “The reduction in mining rewards has pushed miners to explore other revenue streams. With AI firms needing energy-intensive data centers, Bitcoin miners are boosting revenue through sales to AI companies.”

Since June 5, BTC prices have dropped from $71,000 to just over $65,000 as of Wednesday, influenced by a strong dollar, a shift away from riskier assets, and growth in traditional stock indices. Additionally, U.S.-listed exchange-traded funds tracking Bitcoin recorded net outflows of over $600 million last week, marking their worst performance since late April.

Some traders have warned that BTC could fall to as low as $60,000 without new growth catalysts.

Currently, BTC is down 0.6% in the past 24 hours, according to CoinDesk data. Meanwhile, the CoinDesk 20, an index of the largest tokens, is up 1.2%.

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