Crypto Update: Bitcoin Hits 5-Month High as Altcoins Lag Behind

While trading activity remains light across the board in the cryptocurrency segment, we saw interesting developments today in early trading. Bitcoin finally cleared its previous swing high that it has been eyeing for several days now, and with that, the most valuable coin hit a fresh 5-month high while also triggering a short-term buy signal in our trend model.

Bitcoin continues to be much stronger than its closest peers, from a short-term perspective, but the other majors are still stuck in consolidation patterns, and a broad new upswing is yet to be confirmed. That said, most of the top coins are trading in the green today, and Bitcoin’s strength pushed the total value of the market up to $185 billion.

For now, traders should remain defensive towards altcoins, despite Bitcoin’s break-out, but should the rest of the market follow BTC higher, a more durable upswing could be ahead, and we could be in for more short-term buy signals. Despite the improving short-term picture, traders should still only consider short-term positions while using strict risk management rules as the long-term setup remains bearish in the segment.

BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Bitcoin’s bullish move means that the coin will likely test the key $5850 level as early as in the coming days, but even that would leave the bear market intact, especially given the broad weakness among the major altcoins. The structurally important level is now only 5% away, with no meaningful resistance found between it and the current price level.

BTC left behind the previous swing high near the $5400 price level, but in case of a failed move, the $5050 level would likely provide strong support for the coin. Below that further support is found near $4450, $4200, and in the $4000-$4050 zone, while above $5850, resistance is ahead near $6000 and $6100.

ETH/USD, 4-Hour Chart

Although Ethereum is still trading in a rising short-term trend, while also being inside a bullish consolidation pattern, its relative weakness is a negative sign for the whole segment, and our trend model is still on sell signals on both time-frames. A move above $180 would trigger a renewed buy signal, but with the hostile long-term technicals in mind, traders should only consider short-term positions in the coin.

A break-out would likely lead to a test of the $200 level, with another target being ahead near $230, while initial support is found near $160, with further zones found near $145 and $130. Ethereum remains relatively weak from a broader perspective and we continue to expect the bear market to continue.

Ripple and Litecoin Fail to Join Rally

XRP/USDT, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Following its recent short spell of strength, Ripple is once again struggling to hold above the $0.32 level despite the broad strength in the segment. The coin is showing signs of relative weakness and although the key $0.30 level is still safe, traders and investors should still avoid new positions in XRP.

Short-term resistance is ahead just above $0.33 with stronger levels at $0.3550 and $0.3750 and judging by the failed rally attempts of the past months, selling pressure remains apparent in the coin’s market. A move below $0.30 would likely lead to the test of the $0.28 and $0.26 levels, and the bear market is likely to continue in the coming weeks.

LTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

While Litecoin hasn’t been able to follow Bitcoin significantly higher today, it managed to avoid a key breakdown below the key $72.50-$75 support following its recent steep selloff. Despite the recovery, the coin is still on clear sell signals on both time-frames in our trend model, being well below the $85-$90 resistance and its recent swing high.

While the coin’s current relative weakness could soon lead to a bearish move, for now the consolidation pattern remains intact and the counter-trend rally could still continue. Further support zones are found near $64 and $56, while above $90, major resistance zones are ahead just above the $100 price level and near $110 and $125.

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Disclaimer:  The analyst owns cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but doesn’t engage in short-term or day-trading, nor does he hold short positions on any of the coins.

Author:
Trader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.