By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Cryptocurrency investment products and funds posted inflows for a sixth consecutive week, as investors viewed recent regulatory challenges in the sector as buying opportunities, data from digital asset manager CoinShares showed on Monday.
Inflows to the sector hit $95 million last week, led by investments in bitcoin of $50.2 million, according to CoinShares data as of Sept. 24. Over the last six weeks, crypto inflows amounted to $320 million. For 2021, inflows were $6 billion.
Bitcoin bore the brunt of negative investor sentiment of the last two quarters. Last week's inflows were just the fourth week of inflows out of the last 17. So far this year, inflows into bitcoin remained robust at $4.3 billion.
On Friday, China's most powerful regulators intensified a crackdown on cryptocurrencies with a blanket ban on all crypto transactions and mining, hitting bitcoin and other major coins and pressuring crypto- and blockchain-related stocks.
But analysts said investors on Monday seemed to have shrugged off the news.
"Once again we're seeing some real resilience in bitcoin, which at one stage was pushing $40,000," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA in London.
Bitcoin was last down 0.2% at $43,108.
Blockchain data provider Glassnode, in its latest research note on Monday, pointed to the "relatively low utilization" of the bitcoin block-space," which can be both a bearish and bullish signal.
It added that current transactions on bitcoin are at 175,000-200,000 per day, "which are similar to levels seen in the 2018 bear market."
CoinShares data also showed ether products had the second most inflows last week at $29 million, as investors looked to further improvements in the Ethereum blockchain.
Ether though on Monday was down 2.1% at $3,000.88.
Assets under management at Grayscale and Coinshares, the two largest digital asset managers, dipped last week to $38.016 billion and $3.671 billion, respectively, pressured by the decline in crypto prices following China's regulations news on Friday.
(Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; editing by Jonathan Oatis)