Bitcoin Volatility Hits 6.5-Month Low as Price Falls Back to $8,000

Bitcoin's struggle for clear directional bias looks set to end, with volatility hitting multi-month lows and the charts calling a big move to the higher side.

AccessTimeIconOct 23, 2019 at 11:01 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 11:36 a.m. UTC

View

  • Bitcoin has dropped by $300 in the last 24 hours. Even so, the outlook remains neutral as key Fibonacci retracement support at $7,850 is still intact.
  • Bitcoin's volatility gauge has dropped to the lowest level in over six months. The low volatility period will likely end with a big move on the higher side, as a repeated defense of $7,850 is indicating seller exhaustion.
  • A UTC close above $8,820 is needed to confirm a bullish reversal.
  • A high-volume move below $7,850 would confirm range breakdown. However, an impending death cross, a bearish but contrary indicator, suggests the downside, if any, could be limited around $7,400.


Bitcoin's struggle for clear directional bias looks set to end, with volatility hitting multi-month lows and the charts suggesting a big move could soon occur on the higher side.

The top cryptocurrency by market value has spent a better part of the last four weeks trading the range of $7,800 to $8,400.

A double bottom breakout on Oct. 9 had raised hopes of a move above $9,000. The ascent, however, stalled $8,820 on Oct. 11 following which prices fell back to $7,800.

Further, the cryptocurrency failed to draw bids above $8,300 over the last two days despite the bullish setup on intraday charts and retreated back to $7,920 during the Asian trading hours today.

With the lackluster price action, bitcoin's 60-day daily return volatility, as calculated by Coinmetrics, has dropped to 2.58 percent – the lowest level since April 1.

The volatility gauge topped out above 5.5 percent in July and has been on a steady decline ever since, as seen in the chart below.

CoinDesk - Unknown

An extended period of low volatility often paves the way for a big move on either side.

For instance, the 60-day volatility topped out at 5 percent in early January and fell to 2 percent on April 1 – a day before BTC broke in a bull market with a $1,000 rally to $5,000. Going back further, volatility has bottomed out quite a few times near or below 2 percent.

BTC, therefore, could soon adopt a strong directional bias. The risks are skewed in favor of a bullish move, according to technical charts.

Weekly chart

CoinDesk - Unknown

Bitcoin dived out a contracting triangle in the last week of September, signaling a continuation of the pullback from June's high of $13,880.

The ensuing sell-off, however, ran out of steam near $7,850 – the 38.2 percent Fibonacci retracement of the rally from $3,122 to $13,880 – over the last three weeks.

The repeated defense of the Fibonacci support indicates seller exhaustion. The indicators on the three-day chart are also echoing similar sentiments, as discussed on Tuesday.

BTC, therefore, could see a strong bounce, possibly to levels above $8,820 (Oct. 11 high) in the short term. That would invalidate the lower highs setup on the daily chart and open the doors for resistance at $9,320.

As of now, BTC is changing hands at $7,970 on Bitstamp, representing a 2.8 percent loss on a 24-hour basis.

The outlook would turn bearish if prices drop below $7,850 with strong volumes, confirming a range breakdown.

Even so, a big sell-off, similar to the $2,000 drop seen in September, looks unlikely, and the downside could be restricted near $7,430 (multiple daily lows in early June), as a contrary indicator is about to turn bearish, as seen below.

Daily chart

CoinDesk - Unknown

The impending death cross, a bearish crossover of the 50- and 200-day moving averages, has trapped sellers on the wrong side of the market in the past.

For instance, BTC had bottomed out near $220 with the confirmation of the death cross in mid-September 2015. Notably, the bear trap was formed 11 months ahead of the August 2016 mining reward halving – a price-bullish event.

Interestingly, the latest death cross is happening six months ahead of the reward halving and could mark a bottom in BTC.

Disclosure: The author holds no cryptocurrency assets at the time of writing.

Bitcoin image via CoinDesk archives; charts by Trading View

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

Trending

1
CoinDesk - Unknown
Three Arrows Paper Trail Leads to Trading Desk Obscured Via Offshore Entities

As Three Arrows Capital collapsed under market pressure, its much-lesser known trading desk, TPS Capital, remained active, sources say. But a complex ownership structure might frustrate creditors' efforts to collect.

CoinDesk - Unknown
2
CoinDesk - Unknown
June Was Bitcoin’s Worst Month Ever

Plus, European crypto regulation comes into view.

CoinDesk - Unknown
3
CoinDesk - Unknown
What Traders Are Saying About Bitcoin's Biggest Monthly Loss in 11 Years

Poor macroeconomic sentiment, fears of inflation and systemic risks from the crypto market pushed the cryptocurrency below 2017’s highs.

CoinDesk - Unknown
4
CoinDesk - Unknown
Three Arrows Capital Files for Bankruptcy in New York Tied to British Virgin Islands Proceeding

A British Virgin Islands court ordered Three Arrows' BVI branch into liquidation earlier this week.

CoinDesk - Unknown