Number of Bidders Declines In Second US Marshals Bitcoin Auction

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United States Marshals (Police)The latest data released by United States Marshals Service (USMS) on the auction of 50,000 bitcoins (BTC) seized from alleged SilkRoad owner Ross Ulbricht states that there has been a decline in the total number of bidders in the second bitcoin auction held on December 4, 2014, compared to the first SilkRoad auction held in June. This data was distributed via email by USMS since it is the agency entrusted with administering sale of confiscated property from federal law enforcement agencies.


BitcoinsA total of 45 registered bidders placing up to 63 bids is what the first Silkroad bitcoin auction experienced apart from the widespread coverage by the US media, which experts depict had a considerable effect on the bitcoin market. When you compare this to December 4th 50,000 BTC auction (roughly $18.6m), where only 11 registered bidders participated in the auction submitting just 27 bids, which was less than half what was submitted on the first auction. Registered bidders decreased by a massive 75% while the total number of bids went down by 57%.

Some of the experts have argued that the low turnout in the second Silkroad bitcoin auction was as a result of the lesser bidding window, which was six hours less (8 am – 2 pm) compared to the 12 hour period issued in June (6 am – 6 pm).

Bitcoin’s investment community earlier came forward to report that the interest in the SilkRoad BTC had declined among its members arguing that the general decrease in complexity when it comes to buying large blocks on open market may have contributed to the lack of interest.

Increased participation by companies in bitcoins bidder syndicates is also considered to be a possible reason for the decline with the December 4th auction having at least 2 syndicates take part. This was less from June’s bitcoin auction. The good news is that the USMS auction had little or no effect on bitcoin price, which went down by almost 1% on CoinDesk BPI. According to the USMS, there is an additional 94,000 Silkroad bitcoins to be auctioned in a few months’ time. The official date is yet to be released.

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