Bitcoin bulls were in for a shock this Thursday as the flagship cryptocurrency “crashed” from $57,209 to as low as $50,305.
Many catalysts worked behind the scenes as BTC/USD plunged to its multi-week low. Signs of a recovering job sector, rising interest rates, and nascent inflation spurred rotation from highly-valued pandemic winners — including tech stocks — into equities from manufacturers, banks, and retailers. The US dollar index also climbed, sapping Bitcoin’s appeal among investors.
Data from Glassnode, an on-chain analytics service, showed that investors holding a higher amount of bitcoins, or the “whales,” decrease their holdings of late. The market interprets whales as high-profile institutional investors that could influence short-term price trends.
Glassnode analysts noted that big investors might be in the process of realizing their profits as BTC/USD climbed to its all-time high above $61,000 in mid-March. Meanwhile, small bitcoin holders started increasing their deposits at local price highs, reflecting the so-called fear-of-missing-out, or FOMO, sentiment.
Bitcoin bears fell short of extending their downside bias as the price fell to a classic wave support level.
The cryptocurrency recovered during the early Friday session, touching $52,946 after testing its 50-day moving average. The blue wave in the chart below was instrumental in capping bearish growth on February 28, January 28, January 27, January 22, and many dates before that. Traders with bullish outlooks considered using the 50-DMA as a local bottom — so it appears.
Analyst Jonny Moe ignored the 50-DMA support but flashed a bearish pennant forming on short-term charts. In retrospect, pennants are continuation patterns that mark a pause in price movements during a trend — upside or downside. Bitcoin apparently formed one after its decline on Thursday, alerting Mr. Moe about a potential decline ahead.
“The problem for me is that PA still looks pretty bearish,” he tweeted. “Can maybe force a little bit of a pennant in here, but it’s pretty ugly. Mostly just wait and see mode still.”
Here’s a rough interpretation of Mr. Moe’s signals.
BTC/USD broke out of the pennant structure on Friday, accompanied by higher volumes, but still risked turning its move into a fake breakout. The pair now needs to close above its 200-15M moving average to confirm a reversal, or it would risk entering the pennant structure again, followed by an extended downside move.
Rafael Schultze-Kraft, the co-founder/CTO of Glassnode, expected the bitcoin price to dip to $47,400 owing to the cryptocurrency’s higher UTXO realized price distribution near the level.
Photo by Lukas Juhas on Unsplash