Market Wrap: Bitcoin Steady Near $54K; RSI Indicator Warns of Limited Uptrend

After two days of sell-offs, bitcoin bulls finally returned.

AccessTimeIconMar 26, 2021 at 8:32 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:32 p.m. UTC
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  • Bitcoin (BTC) trading around $53,824.22 as of 20:00 UTC (4 p.m. ET). Climbing 3.22% over the previous 24 hours.
  • Bitcoin’s 24-hour range: $51,267.19-$54,032.05 (CoinDesk 20)
  • BTC trades above its 10-hour and 50-hour averages on the hourly chart, a bullish signal for market technicians.
Bitcoin trading on Coinbase
Bitcoin trading on Coinbase

What a dud: Friday’s record $6 billion expiry in the bitcoin options market turned to be a nonevent as prices for the largest cryptocurrency climbed steadily, with nary a glimpse of the feared plunge to the “max pain” point of $44,000.

For bitcoin bulls, the absence of action brought a measure of relief, with prices ticking up 4.8% on the day to about $53,800, allowing the 12-year-old digital asset to reclaim its losses from the past couple days.

With March coming to an end, one analyst said bitcoin should get “a nice tailwind” as hedge funds rebalance for quarterly reports or to manage risks.

“Both bitcoin and the S&P 500 have reached new all-time highs every month since December,” said Sean Rooney, head of research at Valkyrie Funds.

Such upward momentum could be limited. A widely tracked technical indicator, the monthly relative strength index (RSI), is signaling bitcoin is near an extreme overbought level.

Bitcoin's monthly relative strength index (RSI).
Bitcoin's monthly relative strength index (RSI).

“The RSI reading on the monthly chart is trading at extremely elevated levels,” Joel Kruger, cryptocurrency strategist at LMAX Digital, told CoinDesk. It “suggests the market should see limited upside for now, with risk for correction and consolidation.”

Ether up, market debates Uniswap’s latest update

Ether (ETH) was up on Friday, trading around $1,665.85 and climbing 3.68% in 24 hours as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET).

As ether’s price continues to move in tandem with bitcoin, market chatter was centered on Uniswap’s version 3, unveiled earlier this week.

Uniswap, the leading decentralized exchange (DEX) on Ethereum, announced another upgrade that will be launched on May 5. Uniswap v3, according to the firm behind the platform, will introduce a key change called “concentrated liquidity.”

While the new feature should give liquidity providers (LPs) more control over the price ranges in which they provide capital, there has been criticism that the changes might make it easier for retail liquidity providers to lose money, due to lack of experience.

Haseeb Qureshi, managing partner at Dragonfly Capital, has provided a detailed explanation of why Uniswap v3 would cause retail liquid providers to lose in this tweet thread.

The mixed messages and complexities sent by Uniswap v3 could hurt ether’s price, according to Denis Vinokourov, head of research for Trade The Chain. He pointed out that decentralized finance (DeFi) as a whole is “critical” to the Ethereum blockchain.

"Uniswap has a lot more tokens listed than SushiSwap and it's the go-to avenue for liquidity bootstrapping,” Vinokourov said. “If this changes, and there is no market for them, ether that would otherwise be locked for LP reasons has to be absorbed somehow. But at what price?"

Other markets

Digital assets on the CoinDesk 20 are mostly in green Friday. Notable winners as of 20:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET):


  • Asia’s Nikkei 225 closed in the green 1.56%.
  • The FTSE 100 in Europe closed nearly flat, up 0.99%.
  • The S&P 500 in the United States closed up by 1.66%.


  • Oil was up 3.89%. Price per barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude: $60.84.
  • Gold was in the green 0.30% and at $1731.88 as of press time.


  • The 10-year U.S. Treasury bond yield climbed Friday by 1.68%.
The CoinDesk 20: The Assets That Matter Most to the Market
The CoinDesk 20: The Assets That Matter Most to the Market


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