Bitcoin Drops 15% as Analysts Say Rally Overstretched
Analysts are mixed on how low bitcoin might go if a bigger pullback is seen.
Bitcoin swiftly lost altitude early on Monday, dropping over 15% to below $50,000 before rebounding slightly. The downward price movement comes after bitcoin reached new record highs above $58,300 over the weekend.
The drop seemed to accelerate as U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen described bitcoin as “highly speculative asset” that is extremely inefficient for transactions. Speaking at a New York Times event, Yellen called the amount of energy consumed in processing those transactions is “staggering.”
The top cryptocurrency by market value rebounded to above $51,000 as of 14:30 UTC, representing a roughly 11% drop over 24 hours, according to CoinDesk 20 data.
The pullback could be extended further, as the recent rally looked overstretched, according to David Lifchitz, CIO for Paris-based quantitative trading firm ExoAlpha.
“A 15% correction could happen, taking some steam out of the hot market, before reaching new highs,” Lifchitz told CoinDesk. “The more upward parabolic and fast a move, the more fragile it is, so a pullback would be more than welcome.”
Indeed, bitcoin has seen a staggering price rally over the past four months, rising from $10,000 to nearly $60,000, with just one bull market correction in the second half of January.
The recent rise from $30,000 to $58,000 was even steeper, so a healthy cooling off of the market looks overdue – more so, as several technical analysis tools, including the widely tracked relative strength index (RSI), are signaling overstretched conditions with an above-70 reading.
“Technical indicators such as the RSI and Stochastics across numerous chart timeframes are indicating that the crypto asset is overbought, implying that we could soon see a retracement,” Simon Peters, an analyst at eToro, said in an email.
Peters also pointed to a bearish divergence on the technical chart, while warning of weakening upward momentum and potential for trend reversal that could see prices fall.
The MACD histogram, an indicator used to gauge trend strength and trend changes, has produced lower highs, contradicting higher highs on the price chart, confirming the bearish divergence.
Supporting the case for a price pullback are rising U.S. inflation-adjusted bond yields, as discussed last week.
The 30-year inflation-adjusted yield, or real yield, has turned positive for the first time since June 2020, and the 10-year real yield has risen to -0.80% from lows near -1.05% observed last month, according to data provided by the U.S. Treasury.
A continued rise in yields could push the U.S. dollar higher, putting selling pressure on equities and bitcoin. Stock markets are trading down at press time, with the S&P 500 futures nursing a 0.6% drop on the day.
How low might bitcoin go?
“The pullback can easily extend to the former resistance-turned-support near $42,000,” Joel Kruger, currency strategist at LMAX Digital, told CoinDesk. Markets typically shake out weak bulls with a drop to former hurdle-turned-support levels before extending bull runs.
Bitcoin turned lower from its then-record high of $41,962 on Jan. 8, establishing that level as crucial resistance and slipped to $30,000 in the following days. The newfound resistance was a scaled on Feb. 8 after electric maker Tesla announced its $1.5 billion bitcoin purchase.
Crypto analysts expect other corporates to emulate Tesla’s decision to buy bitcoin. However, they may look to invest on price pullbacks, according to Lifchitz.
“$50,000 looks like the first stop for a mild pullback, but a second leg down could take it down to $40,000, while the $30,000 zone looks like the ultimate bottom should things turn ugly in the short term,” Lifchitz said.
However, Patrick Heusser, head of trading at Swiss-based Crypto Finance AG, said $52,000 is major support, adding that a significant correction may remain elusive, as the derivatives market is no longer exhibiting excess bullishness.
Bitcoin’s average funding rate, or the cost of holding long positions in the perpetual futures listed on major exchanges, declined (normalized) below 0.08% early today, having peaked at multi-month highs above 0.12% last week, according to Glassnode data.
While analysts stand divided on possible magnitude of an impending correction, they expect the cryptocurrency to eventually go on to achieve new record highs above $60,000.
“We believe markets are displaying a healthy correction,” Dibb said. “Both BTC and ETH are still trading within an upward channel, and momentum is still skewed towards the bids.”
Central American Bank for Economic Integration Supports El Salvador’s Bitcoin Law
The Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI), which has 15 member countries, will help El Salvador implement bitcoin as legal tender.
The CABEI president has expressed his support. “We’re very optimistic,” he said.
The head of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) expressed his support for El Salvador’s bitcoin law Monday. CABEI Executive President Dante Mossi said that the bank will give El Salvador technical assistance to implement bitcoin as legal tender.
Last week, El Salvador became the first country in the world to pass a law making cryptocurrency legal tender.
The CABEI has 15 member countries: Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Dominican Republic, Belize, Mexico, Republic of China (Taiwan), Argentina, Colombia, Spain, Cuba, and Korea. The bank’s objective is to “promote the economic integration and the balanced economic and social development of the Central American region,” its website details.
Mossi said his organization will work with El Salvador’s finance ministry and central bank to select a team to work on the implementation, Reuters reported.
Mossi believes that the move to make bitcoin legal tender would offer many benefits to people in El Salvador. For example, it would lower the cost of remittances for relatives of Salvadorans living abroad, he explained.
The CABEI executive president also called on El Salvador’s government to develop a regulatory framework for bitcoin in order to prevent “bad actors” from taking advantage of the system’s anonymity, the publication conveyed.
Following El Salvador’s move to make bitcoin legal tender, lawmakers in a number of Latin American countries have expressed their interest in bitcoin.
The countries include Paraguay, Argentina, Panama, Brazil, and Mexico. Moreover, Tonga and Tanzania have also reportedly expressed interest in bitcoin.
Venture Capitalist Tim Draper Reaffirms His $250K Bitcoin Price Prediction by 2022
American venture capital investor, Tim Draper, said that he thinks bitcoin could reach $250K by 2022, and during an interview with CNBC’s Jade Scipioni this week, Draper reiterated his six-digit bitcoin price forecast made in April 2018.
Tim Draper, the venture capitalist who has his hands in a myriad of blockchain and crypto companies, discussed his bitcoin (BTC) price prediction with CNBC this week.
Draper is well known in the crypto community as he has founded a number of firms that work within the industry. He has also founded organizations like Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), Draper University, Draper Venture Network, Draper Associates, and Draper Goren Holm.
Draper is famous for purchasing thousands of bitcoin (BTC) in July 2014 from the U.S. Marshals Service auction that sold BTC stemming from the Silk Road marketplace. Back then, Draper predicted that BTC would reach $10K per coin and this prediction came to fruition. This made people begin to think of Draper as an oracle, and he was pressed for a new prediction when BTC came close to the $20K zone in 2017.
After many reporters asked Draper his next bitcoin price forecast, he finally answered on Friday the 13th, April 2018. “Serious winds (of change) at our block(chain) party last night,” Draper explained to his followers on Twitter. “I predict $250K by 2022,” Draper added. Since then, as far as predictions are concerned, Draper stepped out of the limelight and many other investors have given their own bitcoin price predictions over the last three years.
Now that BTC has tapped a new all-time-high above $64K per unit, Draper is once again standing behind his $250K prediction. While speaking with CNBC’s Jade Scipioni on the broadcast “CNBC Make It,” Draper said:
“I think I’m going to be right on this one. I’m either going to be really right or really wrong [but] I’m pretty sure that it’s going in that direction.”
Draper Speaks About Dogecoin and Elon Musk’s Critique of Bitcoin’s Energy Use
Draper then explained that he thinks merchants will flock to support BTC within the next few years. “Give it about a year and a half and retailers will all be on Open node, so everybody will accept bitcoin,” Draper stressed. “Then beyond that, I think [bitcoin] continues up because there are only 21 million of them,” the venture capitalist added.
The executive also touched upon dogecoin (DOGE) during his interview and explained that there has to be something that makes the public like the dog token.
“There must be something to dogecoin because it makes us all smile but no engineers are working on it,” Draper said. “Doge devs to improve system transaction efficiency. Potentially promising. I tend to focus on the ones where people are dedicating their lives to improving the currency.”
Draper told CNBC he thinks bitcoin will be the center of financial activity worldwide for a long time and described BTC as one of the world’s tech giants. “[Bitcoin] is sort of like Microsoft [in] the software world or Amazon in the e-commerce world,” Draper remarked.
Furthermore, before Draper made his prediction the venture capitalist spoke about Elon Musk and Tesla’s critique of Bitcoin’s energy use. He commended Musk for what he had previously accomplished but in terms of understanding bitcoin’s energy consumption, Draper thinks he’s wrong.
“Elon, first of all, is one of the most brilliant men in the world…maybe the most brilliant, [but] he got this one wrong,” Draper said.
Bitcoin Remittances to El Salvador Surge 300% Ahead of BTC Becoming Legal Tender
Bitcoin remittances to El Salvador jumped more than fourfold in May from the previous year, according to data from blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis.
Last week, El Salvador passed a bill making bitcoin legal tender in the country alongside the U.S. dollar.
The monthly bitcoin transfers of under $1,000 to El Salvador totaled $1.7 million in May, representing more than a 300 percent increase from $424,000 the previous year, Reuters reported, citing data from blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis.
The monthly bitcoin transfers to the country peaked in March at $2.5 million. While remittances using bitcoin have soared, they are still a small portion of total remittances to the country.
According to the World Bank, remittances using traditional money totaled nearly $6 billion in 2019, and about 95 percent of total remittances in the first quarter of this year came from Salvadorans working in the U.S.
El Salvador became the first country in the world to make bitcoin legal tender when its congress passed President Nayib Bukele’s bitcoin bill last week.
The country is now focusing on bitcoin mining using energy from volcanoes, which aims to be “very cheap, 100% clean, 100% renewable” and with “0 emissions.”
Several organizations have voiced concerns over El Salvador’s move to make bitcoin legal tender, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which warned the country of legal and economic issues last week.
Rating agency Moody’s said last week that El Salvador’s bitcoin law “carries risks for the financial system, the stability of the country’s monetary regime and signals a lack of a coherent economic framework.”
Meanwhile, an official with the Bank of International Settlement (BIS) called the bitcoin law in El Salvador an “interesting experiment” but said it did not change the bank’s approach to cryptocurrency.
The president of the European Central Bank (ECB), Christine Lagarde, similarly said the ECB’s policy is unaffected by El Salvador’s bitcoin law.
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