Chart Veteran Who Predicted Bitcoin’s 2018 Collapse Says the Bull Market May Be Over

Brandt's latest view is based on a statistics concept called "exponential decay."

AccessTimeIconApr 29, 2024 at 7:17 a.m. UTC
Updated Apr 29, 2024 at 7:07 p.m. UTC
  • Bitcoin’s bull market may have ended at the recent record high of over $73,000, veteran chart analyst Peter Brandt said.
  • Brandt said that bitcoin's recent price high of near $74K has already topped according to historical data.

Peter Brandt, veteran chart analyst and CEO of Factor LLC, who was previously uber-bullish on bitcoin (BTC), has switched sides.

In a report shared with CoinDesk, Brandt suggested that bitcoin’s upward trajectory may have reached its peak. This starkly contrasts his February prediction that the bullish cycle, starting from the bear market lows in November 2022, could extend out to September 2025, with prices reaching as high as $200,000.

The latest projection is based on a statistical concept called “exponential decay,” which describes the process of reducing an amount by a consistent percentage rate over a period.

“Bitcoin has historically traded within an approximately 4yr bull/bear cycle, often associated with the halving events. There have been three major bull market cycles since the initial bull cycle and each cycle has been 80% less powerful than its predecessor in terms of the price multiple gained,” Brandt said.

“If the statistical constant of the 80% decay holds true, the [record] high in bitcoin of $73,835 of March 14, 2024, has already reached a price consistent with the historical Exponential Decay,” Brandt added.

Brandt predicted bitcoin's 2018 collapse to under $4,000.

Bitcoin's exponential decay. (Peter Brandt)
Bitcoin's exponential decay. (Peter Brandt) (Peter Brandt)

The table shows the magnitude or gain multiple of previous bitcoin bull runs and exponential decays.

The first rally saw prices rise from $0.01 to $31.91, marking a 3,391x increase in less than two years. Subsequent bull markets have been longer in duration but smaller in magnitude, consistently suffering a roughly 80% exponential decay.

Bitcoin’s rally to record highs above $73,000 in March marked a 79.1% upswing from the bear market low of $15,473 reached after the collapse of the crypto exchange FTX in November 2022.

So, if exponential decay theory is a guide, the bull market may be over.

That said, past data does not guarantee future results, more so, as historically, Bitcoin blockchain’s quadrennial mining reward halvings have bolstered bullish trends. The fourth reward halving took place on April 20, reducing the pace of per-block supply emission to 3.125 BTC from 6.5 BTC.

As such, the consensus in the crypto community is that bitcoin’s ongoing consolidation between $60,000 and $70,000 would resolve in a bullish move.

"The ‘Pre/Post Halving’ cycle construct would suggest that the current bull trend will reach a top in the $140,000 to $160,000 range sometime in late summer/early fall 2025,” Brandt said, adding that the thesis remains the primary driver of his bitcoin ownership status.

Brandt, however, added that the exponential theory remains on his radar until evidence emerges that “such decay will not influence the bull trend that began in November 2022.”

Bitcoin changed hands at $62,300 at press time, down 1.5% on a 24-hour basis.

Edited by Parikshit Mishra.


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Omkar Godbole

Omkar Godbole is a Co-Managing Editor on CoinDesk's Markets team.