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Daily Analysis: Markets Calm Down after Slightly Hawkish Fed Statement

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Wednesday Market Recap

Asset Current Value Daily Change
S&P 500 2832 0.39%
DAX 13,189 -0.08%
WTI Crude Oil 65.02 1.83%
GOLD 1348.00 0.44%
Bitcoin 10,049 -0.82%
EUR/USD 1.2417 0.12%

Financial markets were choppy throughout the day, as it is usual on Fed days, as the correction of the last couple of days dominated sentiment among investors. As Janet Yellen had her last FOMC meeting as Fed Chair, traders were paying close attention to the final message of this term’s committee. The rate decision was not really a question this time around, as no analysts expected a rate hike or a change in the tapering schedule of the central bank.

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The statement was mostly in line with expectations, but the optimistic view on inflation and growth triggered a muted rally in the Dollar. The Greenback remained close to its recent multi-year low despite the bounce, with the EUR/USD closing above the 1.24 level.

EUR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

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Equities were drifting slightly lower during the US session, before the Fed, and turned volatile after the release, but the major indices ended the day well off their lows, as the market settled down. The Volatility Index (VIX) retreated significantly, as investors removed their Fed-related hedges, and that helped the late-day rally too.

S&P 500 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

On a negative note, small caps finished the session showing clear relative weakness, and that coupled with the persistent weakness in Asian and European stocks, points to the continuation of the correction.

Commodities also had a choppy, but ultimately positive day with especially crude oil experiencing wild swings after the release of the mixed US inventory data. The WTI contract ended the day near the $65 per barrel after dipping below $64 previously. Gold has been trading sideways for most of the day, but the precious metal closed just off the $1350 level, not far below the recent 14-month high.

Gold Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Cryptocurrencies

The crypto segment had a mixed session, which was already more than yesterday’s sell-off promised, as the major coins all held up above the crash lows from early January, and attempted a rally, which carried BTC back above $10,000. Bitcoin failed to gain significant ground North of the historical price level, and the most valuable coin is still hovering around that zone, while the declining trend is still clearly intact.

BTC/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Altcoins are following BTC’s movement very closely yet again, as correlations are high across the board, with only Ethereum and Stellar showing distinct relative strength. ETH is well above the $1000 support, despite yesterday’s trend break, while being miles above the crash lows near the $740 level.

While we expect the coin to fall below the correction lows before the end of the cycle, there are clear signs of accumulation in the token’s market, and that might have significant long-term implications, with a possible further tightening of the gap between the market values of BTC and ETH in the coming months.

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Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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Analysis

Bitcoin Bears Running Out of Gas, According to Price Manipulation Theory

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A group of researchers at The Crypto Fam have linked price manipulation to bitcoin’s bear market, suggesting that the arrival of institutional trading allowed investors to dump oversized holdings of digital currency.

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Bitcoin Price Manipulation?

According to a new theory, it is no coincidence that bitcoin’s long unwind began on Dec. 17, the same day that bitcoin futures were launched. Over the next several months, the bitcoin-dollar exchange rate would fall from a high near $20,000 to a low of $5,980.

The rapid decline was aided by futures trading, which allows traders to short assets much more easily. As we’ve written before, shorting bitcoin was practically impossible prior to the launch of futures.

The theory posits that institutional money was stocking up on bitcoin well before Dec. 17, likely in anticipation of the CBOE/CME futures contracts. The bear market that ensued consisted of three major down moves, with the third leg beginning earlier this month.

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Each down move follows a similar pattern: (1) a fake-out dump, (2) a failed rally and (3) a major dump. Each leg down is driven by lower selling volume with each drop less severe than the previous.

The compelling study was presented this week in a series of tweets by The Crypto Fam, which describes itself as “a community of crypto enthusiasts bridging the gaps.” The group’s stated goal, according to its website, is to “make crypto not so cryptic.”

In describing the pattern, the researchers concluded that “the bear market is running out of gas” because their supply of bitcoin has declined since the pump culminated on Dec. 17.

“This is a very simplified explanation of how markets work. A great deal of the total BTC supply is not traded. Some is lost forever in idle or forgotten wallets. Other Bitcoin is hodled by strong hands who never sell. This gives [market makers] greater power with their share of BTC.”

End of the Downtrend?

With the bears and market makers running low on supplies, the researchers concluded that the end of the downtrend is near. Bounces are more shallow than before while bottoms aren’t nearly as low.

Bitcoin prices fell below $7,300 earlier this week but have since recovered to the $7,500 range. Since bottoming below $6,000, prices have failed to test new lows. On the opposite side of the ledger, rallies have also been limited to $12,000 and $10,000, respectively.

Institutional adoption is widely viewed as a positive development in the evolution of cryptocurrency trading, though the latest study sheds light on the downside risks of derivatives trading. A similar conclusion was drawn earlier this month by the San Francisco Fed, which compared the launch of bitcoin futures to innovations in securitization in the mortgage market. However, this model has been criticized heavily for mistaking correlation with causation.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

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Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 415 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts.




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Analysis

Long-Term Cryptocurrency Analysis: Correction Deepens but Leaders Remain Stable

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As the major cryptocurrencies got hit hard this week, losing around 20% on average, the long-term picture in the segment got close to an entry point for investors. The overbought readings that developed during the late-April rally are now cleared and although the short-term trends are still clearly negative, we still expect the coins to resume the recovery. With that in mind, long-term investors could start accumulating the relatively stronger coins.

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On a negative note, even the leaders violated key support levels during this week’s selloff, but the secular long-term trends are not yet in danger. The prior leaders Ethereum, EOS, and IOTA are still in the center of attention, as we expect them to form a bottom soon. Bitcoin and the other relatively weak coins, like Litecoin, Monero, Dash, and NEO are still lagging the form a technical perspective, but they are also well above the support levels that would indicate an end of the secular bull market.

BTC/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

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Bitcoin is below the key $7650-$7800 support level and it remains the biggest drag on the market, despite a brief period of relative strength this week. The upper boundary of the base pattern that we identified in April is found near $6150, with a weaker zone around $6500, and with the short-term trend clearly being negative, the latter might be tested before a bottom forms. Further resistance is ahead at $8400, $8700, and between $9000 and $9200, and traders and investors still shouldn’t enter positions here.

ETH/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

Ethereum is testing the $555-$575 support zone after violating the $625-$645 range, with the declining short-term pattern being intact. A bottom near the $500 would still keep the recovery intact, but the correction low might already be in, and investors could already add to their holdings here. Further resistance zones are ahead between $735 and $780 and near $845, while support is found near $450.

(more…)

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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Analysis

Pre-Market: Oil Plunges Below $70 as Markets Mixed Before Long Weekend

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Financial markets are relatively calm today, despite the hectic week that was highlighted by the Turkish currency crisis, wild swings in bonds, and a step back in US-North Korean relations. Stock markets turned lower globally, with US equities outperforming the rest of the world, essentially drifting sideways all week long, thanks to the slight correction in the Dollar’s rally, and the dip in Treasury yields that was triggered by the dovish Fed meeting minutes.

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S&P 500 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Today, the durable goods report came out before the opening bell and although the headline number was a tad worse than expected the more important core figure beat the consensus estimate, helping the slightly dampening economic outlook, even as yields continue to fall, especially with regards to long-dated Treasuries.

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EUR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Although emerging market currencies are way less volatile today than recently, despite the rebound in the Dollar, equities shed their early gains and are now slightly in the red. The all-important EUR/USD pair hitting yet another 6-month low near 1.1650, and the test of the key long-term 1.1450-1.15 zone looks more and more likely in the coming weeks, even as the pair is a bit oversold.

Energy Markets in Turmoil as OPEC Signals Production Increase Again

WTI Crude Oil, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

It seems that the crude oil market is in for a strategic switch yet again, as the OPEC, together with Russia made it clear today that the price of the Black Gold finally reached a desirable level. The cartel will be targeting a higher level of output later on this year in order to keep the US shale players under pressure by capping the advance in the key commodity’s market.

The WTI contract reached a 4-year high at $72 per barrel recently and the Brent contract which is more exposed to Middle East woes rose as high as $80 per barrel after trading below the $30 level just two years ago. The last phase of the advance extended above the level where a large portion of the shale plays turn profitable, and as global growth worries also surfaced, the commodity entered a selloff this week.

Gold Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Safe haven assets continue to be bid despite the relatively calm environment, and gold hit a two-week high today despite the bounce in the Greenback as buyers are back after the wash-out plunge below $1300. With the long-term setup and fundamentals still being favorable for the precious metal, the short-term downtrend line is in danger here.

As US markets will be closed on Monday, which usually favors an active session, volatility might remain high throughout the day.

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Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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