Bitcoin was trading less than 2% lower on Friday morning.
The price was around $37,477 per coin, while rivals Ethereum and Dogecoin were trading lower at around $2,475 and 32 cents per coin, respectively, according to Coindesk.
Bitcoin’s price had rallied as much as 15% since bottoming at $33,472 a coin on Tuesday, but analysts at J.P. Morgan say a shift in the structure of the market signals there is further weakness on the horizon. The cryptocurrency has plunged 41% from its April peak.
"The shift in Bitcoin futures into backwardation is a bearish signal," wrote J.P. Morgan analysts led by Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou. They noted this was the first time the market has been in backwardation since a vicious bear market wiped out 83% of the cryptocurrency’s value.
Backwardation occurs when the spot price is higher than the futures price, meaning investors are willing to pay a premium to hold bitcoin now.
It is part of a new first-of-its-kind partnership between exchange operator Coinbase and investment platform ForUsAll.
The new retirement account dubbed the Alt 401(k), allows investors to use up to 5% of their contributions for buying, holding, and selling over 50 cryptocurrencies.
To help employees use cryptocurrencies appropriately, ForUsAll provides personalized help and automatically alerts participants when their allocations exceed 5% of their portfolio.
El Salvador concerns
The International Monetary Fund has concerns about the move by El Salvador to make bitcoin a parallel legal tender.
The concerns are both economic and legal – and further cloud the outlook for an IMF-backed program and widening spreads on the country's bonds, according to Reuters.
El Salvador has become the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as legal tender.
Foreign investors, concerned about the future of an IMF deal they see as key for the Central American country, have demanded increasingly higher premiums to hold Salvadoran debt, according to Reuters.
El Salvador's law means bitcoin will have equal footing with the dollar, which became its official currency 20 years ago.
El Salvador bonds were trading lower in price across the curve on Thursday, with the 2027 and 2052 issues down 1 cent each on the day.