Crypto Update: Altcoin Market Cap on the Verge of Trend Reversal

Fund managers and investors often rely on a market index to get a general sense of where the market may be headed. Usually, an index is the weighted average of the largest or the best performing equities in the market. For example, the Standard and Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) is the combination of 500 of the largest US stocks represented as one index value. These indices act as a barometer as they represent and influence the performance of the entire market.

For someone who invests in stocks and cryptos, I understand the importance of an index and apparently, I’m not alone. Cryptocurrencies don’t have an official index that could serve as a weather vane so someone created one. The creator/s of pulled data from to provide charts and candles and reflect the price movement of the entire altcoin market (coin market capitalization minus bitcoin capitalization). This gives us the opportunity to analyze the direction of all altcoins. What we saw was promising.

In this article, we reveal how the altcoin market cap is on the verge of reversing its trend.

Weak Breakout from Falling Wedge  

The altcoin market cap managed to go as high as $554.916 billion in January 2018. At that market cap level, the parabolic run of altcoins came to a screeching halt. The market went into a downward spiral as it generated a series of lower highs and lower lows. A quick look at the weekly chart shows that the market cap was inside a large falling wedge.

The weekly chart of Alts

The market eventually broke out of the pattern in September 2018. However, the breakout had no legs as volume was actually thinner than its weekly average. Even so, alts attempted to generate a breakout rally, which was firmly rejected at $112 billion several times. As a result, the market tumbled.

Nevertheless, this weak volume breakout would set the stage for the market’s bounce.

Key Support Levels to the Rescue

In technical analysis, former resistances become reliable support areas. These former resistances turned out to be crucial in the bottoming out process of the altcoin market.

A quick look at the daily chart reveals that two support levels have kept bears at bay. The first one was the former resistance of the falling wedge. Notice how the altcoin market smoothly slid down to this support without breaching it. Even though this support is weak, it proved to be instrumental in the market’s bounce.

The daily chart of Alts

The other one is the parabolic support of $80 billion. This support was also a former resistance level. The altcoin market struggled to get above this level in October 2017. When it did, altcoins soared. The market apparently remembers this price action even after a year later as participants bought at this area.  

We’ve seen numerous altcoins such as Ripple (XRP/USD) and Monero (XMR/USD) become bullish after bouncing off parabolic support levels. Will we see the same action for the entire altcoin market cap? Perhaps, the emerging pattern on the daily chart can give us more clues.

Potential Inverse Head and Shoulders on the Daily

The market’s bounce at $80 billion was met with heavy selling at $112 billion on September 23. This is the same level that rejected the breakout rally that would have turned the market bullish. With bears defending the resistance, the altcoin market lost over $22 billion in value as it pulled back below $90 billion.

Inverse head and shoulders in the making

The good news is the retracement has enabled bulls to create a bullish higher low setup. This is the first higher low generated by the altcoin market in 2018. This is a huge development. If the lower high can kill bullish momentum, the higher low can suck the energy out of bearish momentum.

With a higher low in place, it appears that the altcoin market is creating an inverse head and shoulders pattern in preparation for a bullish breakout. I’ve said it many times: this is one of the most reliable structures in reversing a market’s trend. If altcoins follow the projected path, then we’re on the verge of a bullish breakout.

Bottom Line

Our analysis of the altcoin market capitalization chart reveals that the market is on verge of taking off. The weak breakout from the falling wedge, bounce from key support areas, and the emergence of an inverse head and shoulders pattern are all setting the stage for a massive crypto comeback. To those who are still bearish, maybe it’s time to reconsider your stance.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Kiril is a CFA Charterholder and financial professional with 5+ years of experience in financial writing, analysis and product ownership. He has passed all three CFA exams on first attempt and has a bachelor's degree with a specialty in finance. Kiril’s current focus is on cryptocurrencies and funds, as he does his own crypto research and is a Product Manager at Mitre Media. He also has his personal website, where he teaches people about the basics of investing. His ultimate goal is to help people with limited knowledge of finance and investments to create investment portfolios easily, and in line with their unique circumstances.