Market Wrap: Analysts Expect Positive Bitcoin Returns in December

The cryptocurrency typically rises in the fourth quarter, which is why some traders are poised for a year-end rally.

AccessTimeIconDec 1, 2021 at 11:26 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 4:37 p.m. UTC
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Bitcoin was stuck in a tight trading range between $55,000 and $58,000 on Wednesday as some analysts expect bullish sentiment to return this month given positive seasonal trends.

The bitcoin Fear & Greed Index entered “extreme fear” territory during last week’s sell-off. The index is at the lowest level since late-September, which preceded a BTC price bounce. Additionally, technical indicators are starting to rise from oversold levels as price pullbacks remain limited.

“Here we see a classic market pattern: consolidation at an important level in September, a breakout and subsequent steady and methodical buying throughout October and the first half of November, and finally a period of correction and cooling off in November while maintaining significant levels,” Alex Kuptsikevich, an analyst at FxPro, wrote in an email to CoinDesk.

“Now, the correction and consolidation look complete, and the ether looks set to rewrite historical highs,” Kuptsikevich wrote.

Latest Prices

  • Bitcoin (BTC): $56,799, -1.0%
  • Ether (ETH): $4,568.9, -1.5%
  • S&P 500: -1.2%
  • Gold: $1,779, +0.2%
  • 10-year Treasury yield closed at 1.421%

November pullbacks

Litecoin (LTC) and ether (ETH) outperformed the CoinDesk 20, which includes some of the largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Bitcoin was down roughly 9% last month, while Cardano’s ADA token and dogecoin (DOGE) were down about 20% during the same period.

CoinDesk 20 November returns (CoinDesk)

Outside of the CoinDesk 20, metaverse tokens generated significant returns in November. Arcane Research noted that Decentraland’s MANA token was up about 70% over the past month, which contributed to the overall price rise in tokens with smaller market capitalizations.

“We see that seven of the top 10 coins by market capitalization [generated] a negative weekly change in market share, meaning that the smaller coins are catching up [to large-cap coins],” Arcane Research wrote.

Additionally, layer one (L1) tokens are on the rise following the Ethereum blockchain network upgrade in early August. “High gas fees on the ETH chain have become a norm now,” Pankaj Balani, CEO of Delta Exchange, wrote in an email to CoinDesk.

“This has forced participants to move to other L1 chains that provide cheaper & faster transactions over CeFi (centralized finance) and DeFi (decentralized finance) platforms. We expect this trend to continue going forward into the next quarter as well,” Balani wrote.

Strong December for bitcoin?

The chart below shows average returns for bitcoin by month. Typically, BTC has positive returns in the fourth quarter, which is why some traders remain poised for a year-end rally across cryptocurrencies. Based on seasonal data, however, BTC’s upside could be limited as January tends to produce negative returns.

Bitcoin seasonality (CoinDesk, StockCharts)

Altcoin roundup

  • DEX aggregator 1inch raises $175 million Series B funding round: 1inch Network’s latest fundraising round was led by Amber Group, with more than 50 additional investors participating, CoinDesk’s Andrew Thurman reported. 1inch co-founder Sergej Kunz noted that 1inch, which previously closed funding rounds of $12 million and $2.8 million, is aiming to use the new money to bring in investment partners with institutional experience. The list of notable investors included Alameda Research, Celsius, Jane Street and VanEck.
  • Digital asset manager 21Shares announces Polygon exchange-traded product: The news sent the Ethereum sidechain’s MATIC token up 16% as of Wednesday afternoon, CoinDesk’s Lyllah Ledesma reported. The new listing for the 21Shares’ ETP, which the company says is Europe’s first product linked to MATIC’s performance, comes after it was unveiled on the SIX Swiss Exchange last month. Polygon’s MATIC was recently trading at around $2.05, still well off its all-time high of $3 reached in May.
  • Metaverse tokens SAND and MANA big winners in November: Hype over the untapped value of the “metaverse” sent tokens such as Sandbox’s SAND, Decentraland’s MANA and others to all-time highs in November, amid surging interest from cryptocurrency traders and Wall Street alike. The price rallies followed Facebook’s announcement in October that it would rebrand as Meta, with a new mission that aims to “bring the metaverse to life.”

Relevant News

Other markets

Most digital assets in the CoinDesk 20 ended the day lower.

Notable winners as of 21:00 UTC (4:00 p.m. ET):

  • Polygon (MATIC), +7.0%
  • Algorand (ALGO): +5.4%

Notable losers:

  • Polkadot (DOT): -4.5%
  • Dogecoin (DOGE): -3.8%


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CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Damanick Dantes

Damanick was a crypto market analyst at CoinDesk where he wrote the daily Market Wrap and provided technical analysis. He is a Chartered Market Technician designation holder and member of the CMT Association. Damanick is also a portfolio strategist and does not invest in digital assets.

Tracy Wang

Tracy was the deputy managing editor at CoinDesk. She owns BTC, ETH, MINA, ENS and some NFTs.

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