Bitcoin (BTC) looks set to end its record six-month losing streak with modest gains in February.
The crypto market leader is currently trading at $3,800 on Bitstamp, representing a 10 percent gain on the monthly opening price of $3,434, according to CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index. Had BTC remained bid at highs above $4,100 seen over the weekend, the monthly gain would have been close to 20 percent.
Nevertheless, a 10 percent rise – assuming prices stay at $3,800 till UTC close tomorrow – will be the first positive monthly performance since July.
Prices dropped 9, 6, 4.4, 37, 7 and 7.5 percent, respectively, in the previous six months, the longest stretch of monthly losses on record. Notably, November’s double-digit drop did the most damage, with prices tumbling below the long-held support of $6,000 and dashing hopes of a long-term bullish reversal from that level.
The sell-off, however, ran out of steam near $3,300 in the last two months, allowing BTC to post a notable bounce in the historically positive month of February.
More importantly, as we enter the final month of the first quarter, signs of bearish exhaustion have emerged on longer duration charts, as discussed earlier this week. BTC, therefore, could remain better bid in March – a weak month for the leading cryptocurrency since 2014.
A green candle has appeared on the monthly chart after six months in the red. The trend, however, is still to the downside, as indicated by the downward sloping 5- and 10-month moving averages (MAs).
A break above the descending trendline connecting the December 2017 and November 2018 highs is needed to invalidate the bearish view.
On the above chart, the 50-week MA has dropped below the 100-week MA for the first time since early 2015. That long-term bearish crossover is widely considered a lagging indicator. Further, historical data shows the previous bear market ended with the bear cross of the same two averages.
Further, the cryptocurrency created an inverted bullish hammer last week, validating the seller exhaustion signaled by the long-term MA crossover.
BTC, therefore, may remain on the offensive next month.
BTC created a bearish outside reversal (engulfing) candle yesterday, countering the bullish outside reversal created in three days to Feb. 8. A bullish-to-bearish reversal, however, would be confirmed only if BTC finds acceptance under $3,714.
That looks unlikely, as the 10-candle MA, currently placed just below $3,700, is trending north and could recharge engines for a re-test of $4,000.