Bitcoin’s death-cross may start to bite

On Friday, bitcoin's price declined markedly, and the daily chart hint at further weakness. The 50/200 daily EMAs death-crossed on 27 January (green ellipse). However, they have lacked angle, and the cryptocurrency has mainly moved sideways (blue arrow). The red 50-day EMA has now diverged away from the black 200-day EMA (black ellipse). If this continues and angle and separation develop, bitcoin's momentum will be biased to the downside.

We note that cryptocurrencies have aligned with risk assets; bitcoin has a correlation coefficient above 70% with stock indexes. In addition, it is closer to the growth side of the market, with a reading of 79% against the Nasdaq.

Therefore, it is no surprise that Fed Chair Powell's comments on Thursday rocked the boat. He affirmed support for moving faster on hiking interest rates to control inflation, reinforcing a likely 50bps move in May. Moreover, the probability for a 75bps increase in June is over 80% as per fed funds futures. These hikes will increase the cost of borrowing and likely dampen the appetite for risk assets. This aggressiveness is a headwind for bitcoin, and if it continues to pressure the cryptocurrency, it will contribute to further EMA deterioration

Russell Shor

Senior Market Specialist

Russell Shor joined FXCM in October 2017 as a Senior Market Specialist. He is a certified FMVA® and has an Honours Degree in Economics from the University of South Africa. Russell is a full member of the Society of Technical Analysts in the United Kingdom. With over 20 years of financial markets experience, his analysis is of a high standard and quality.

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