Bitcoin’s (BTC) 2023 rally has been boosted by expectations that the United States Federal Reserve will slow down the pace of its rate hikes as inflation has started cooling down. Some even anticipate a rate cut by the end of the year. That assumption received a jolt on Feb.3 when the U.S. employment data for January beat expectations, with unemployment hitting its lowest level since May 1969.
If markets do not react negatively to news perceived as bearish, it’s a sign that the sentiment has turned positive. Traders may then shift their focus to the next important economic data release. Trading firm QCP Capital said in its latest market update that the Consumer Price Index print on Feb. 14 could move markets. They believe the risks to the data are to the upside.
Daily cryptocurrency market performance. Source: Coin360
The current crypto bear market seems to have driven institutional investors to the sidelines. According to a new survey conducted by JP Morgan, 72% of institutional traders said they do not plan to “trade crypto/digital coins” in 2023. Only 14% of the respondents showed an inclination to trade this year.
Will Bitcoin and altcoins witness profit booking in the near term? Let’s study the charts of the top 10 cryptocurrencies to find out.
Bitcoin bounced off the $22,800 support on Feb. 1, indicating that bulls are buying the dip to this level. The bulls pushed the price above $24,000 on Feb. 2 but could not sustain the higher levels.
BTC/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The rising moving averages and the relative strength (RSI) in the overbought zone indicate that the path of least resistance is to the upside. If the price rises from the current $22,800, the BTC/USDT pair could surge to $25,000. This level is likely to act as a formidable barrier.
The first sign of weakness will be a break and close below the 20-day exponential moving average (EMA) ($22,279). That could trigger the stops of several short-term traders and the pair could fall to $21,480.
Buyers propelled Ether (ETH) above the overhead resistance of $1,680 on Feb. 2, but they could not sustain the breakout. The price gave up all the gains on the day and closed below $1,680.
ETH/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The upsloping 20-day EMA ($1,571) and the RSI in the positive territory indicate that bulls are in control. They may again attempt to overcome the overhead barrier at $1,680 and start the journey to $2,000. The $1,800 level may provide some resistance, but it is likely to be crossed.
Bears will have to sell aggressively and yank the price below the 20-day EMA if they want to gain the upper hand. If they can pull it off, the ETH/USDT pair may decline to $1,500 and if this support cracks, the pullback could eventually reach $1,352.
BNB’s (BNB) tight-range trading between the 20-day EMA ($306) and the overhead resistance at $318 resolved to the upside on Feb. 2.
BNB/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
Although bears sold the rally on Feb. 2, a positive sign is that the buyers did not allow the price to slide back below the breakout level of $318. This suggests that the bulls are trying to flip the $318 level into support. If they can pull it off, the BNB/USDT pair could skyrocket to $360, as there is no major barrier in between.
If bears want to halt the up-move, they will have to pull the price back below the 20-day EMA. The pair could then drop to the 50-day simple moving average (SMA) of $276.
XRP (XRP) once again turned down from the $0.42 resistance on Feb. 2, indicating that bears are trying to protect this level.
XRP/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The price is squeezed between the 20-day EMA ($0.40) and $0.42. This suggests a breakout may be around the corner. The gradually upsloping 20-day EMA and the RSI in the positive territory indicate that bulls have the upper hand. This increases the possibility of a break above $0.42. If that happens, the XRP/USDT pair could soar to $0.51.
Contrary to this assumption, if the price turns down and breaks below the 20-day EMA, the decline could extend to the 50-day SMA ($0.37).
Attempts by the bears to sink Cardano (ADA) below the 20-day EMA ($0.37) failed on Feb. 1. The bulls fiercely defended the level, as seen from the long tail on the candlestick.
ADA/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The negative divergence on the RSI points to weakening momentum but the upsloping 20-day EMA suggests that buyers have the edge. If the price turns up from the current level, the bulls will again try to catapult the ADA/USDT pair toward the overhead resistance at $0.44.
On the contrary, if the price turns down and breaks below the 20-day EMA, it will signal that traders may be booking profits. That could open the doors for a potential drop to the 50-day SMA ($0.31).
The long tail on Dogecoin’s (DOGE) Feb. 1 candlestick shows that the bulls aggressively purchased the dip to the 20-day EMA ($0.08). However, buyers failed to build upon this strength and overcome the barrier at $0.10.
DOGE/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The DOGE/USDT pair is stuck between the 20-day EMA and $0.10. The gradually upsloping 20-day EMA and the RSI in the positive territory indicate that buyers have a slight edge. If the price rebounds off the 20-day EMA again, the bulls will try to overcome the resistance at $0.10. If they manage to do that, the pair could rise to $0.11.
On the other hand, if the price slips below the 20-day EMA, the pair could drop to the 50-day SMA ($0.08). This is an important level for the bulls to defend because if it cracks, the pair could retest $0.07.
Polygon (MATIC) turned up from the breakout level of $1.05 on Feb.1 and reached above $1.25 on Feb. 2. The long wick on the day’s candlestick suggests that short-term traders may have booked profits at higher levels.
MATIC/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
A positive sign is that the bulls did not cede ground to the bears and are attempting to push the price to the target objective of $1.30. This level may again act as a strong barrier, but if buyers bulldoze their way through, the MATIC/USDT pair could reach $1.70.
Alternatively, if the price turns down sharply from the current level, the MATIC/USDT pair could drop to $1.05. This is an important level to keep an eye on because a bounce off it could keep the pair range-bound between $1.05 and $1.30 for a few days.
Related: Bitcoin’s big month: Did US institutions prevail over Asian retail traders?
Litecoin (LTC) continued its northward march and skyrocketed above the psychological level of $100 on Feb. 1. This rise may have tempted short-term traders to book profits.
LTC/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The LTC/USDT pair could enter a minor correction, but the bulls will likely buy the dip to the 20-day EMA ($90). If the price rises from the current level or rebounds off the 20-day EMA, the bulls will try to extend the up-move to $107.
This positive view could invalidate in the near term if the price turns down and breaks below the 20-day EMA. Such a move will indicate that the bulls may be rushing to the exit. The pair could then slump to $81 and later to $75.
Polkadot (DOT) bounced off the 20-day EMA ($6.21) on Feb. 1 and broke above the overhead resistance of $6.84 on Feb. 2. The bulls could not maintain the higher levels as seen from the long wick on the Feb. 2 candlestick.
DOT/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
A positive sign is that the bulls did not allow the price to break back below the resistance line. This indicates that traders are trying to flip this level into support. Buyers will have to sustain the price above $7 to gain control. The DOT/USDT pair could then surge to $8 where it may face strong resistance from the sellers.
If bears want to regain control, they will have to quickly sink the price back below the 20-day EMA. The pair could then enter a corrective phase and plummet to $5.50.
Avalanche (AVAX) soared above the overhead resistance at $22 on Feb. 2, but the long wick on the day’s candlestick shows that bears are selling on rallies.
AVAX/USDT daily chart. Source: TradingView
The rising moving averages suggest that bulls are in command, but the negative divergence on the RSI indicates that the momentum may be weakening. If buyers do not give up much ground from the current level, the likelihood of a break above $22 increases. The AVAX/USDT pair could then attempt a rally to $30.
Contrarily, if the price slips below $20.50, the pair could reach the resistance line. The bears will have to sink the pair below this support to tilt the advantage in their favor.