The crypto world is a uniquely perfect environment for arbitrage. As William Belk argues here, the combination of it’s distributed nature, regulation, security, availability, and anonymity factors means that the marketplace has many inefficiencies, and that “arbitrage opportunities will continue indefinitely.” For example, some markets pay a premium for security, geographical location, or simply because they don’t know they can get it cheaper somewhere else. In some cases, the price discrepancies across different exchanges can be as much as 43%.
A beginner might prefer to trade cryptocurrency stocks on the stock market (GBTC is a trust that owns Bitcoin and sells shares of it; trading this avoids you having to trade cryptocurrency directly). The main Bitcoin stock here in 2018 is GBTC. Be aware that GBTC trades at a premium (meaning bitcoins are cheaper than buying shares of the GBTC trust), which isn’t ideal. Also, cryptocurrency trading is a 24-hour market, where the traditional stock market is not. Learn more about the GBTC Bitcoin Trust and the related pros and cons before you invest.
One of the biggest draws to Binance is the super cheap transaction fees. Since Binance are in the startup phase, the fees really are some of the least expensive out there. Binance charge nothing for new deposits of coins onto the platform and just 0.1% on the value of trades. To put this in perspective – if you were to use your Bitcoin to buy $100 of Ethereum, Binance would charge you 10 cents.
A week in the crypto market is equivalent to three months in the traditional capital stock exchange, in terms of events and occurrences. One who wants to jump right into the deep water of crypto trading has to follow it not just on a daily basis, but on an hourly basis. It’s not everyone that can play this game. Nevertheless you need to consider the amount of time invested in the process. Sometimes it pays off to be a long-term investor, rather than a daily trader. By the way, as a daily trader it does not necessarily mean you are bound to buy and sell and trade every single day. Trades can reach their destination within minutes, as well as within months. Think about the time you are willing to invest in studying and tracking the market. Remember your time has marginal cost, or in other words – your time has a price tag. If you have decided to put your time and effort into trading on a daily basis, it is better to start with small doses and examine the performance prior to increasing invested amounts. This is yet an additional benefit of crypto – the possibility of trading on micro-transactions. Unlike the capital market, where if you put an eye on Apple stock, you would need to buy a minimum share equivalent to a couple thousand bucks, in crypto you can perform transactions of a few cents.
We cannot say when you have lost a trade in cryptocurrency trading. If you’re not careful when it comes to cryptocurrency trading, you could find yourself gambling more than you’re trading, and eventually you might lose everything you’ve invested. Never invest more money than you are willing to lose. You should consider any money you put into a trade as lost.
The basic idea of this strategy is, “get out until the carnage is over.” When the crypto-market is under fire, non-crypto assets will appreciate in value compared to cryptocurrencies. Moving some of your portfolio over to fiat currencies (or something else) will protect it from a declining cryptocurrency market. This is similar to how investors buy gold as a safe haven in times of stock market turbulence. When the storm is over, you can buy back your assets at a lower price. It’s always a good idea to keep a diversified portfolio.
You should have a general understanding of what a cryptocurrency is because knowing the functional use of a coin can give you an edge when deciding your investments. There are hundreds of coins ranging from major players like Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH), to smaller coins that we refer to as “altcoins.” Each coin is unique and offers their own flunctional use cases. If you’re feeling unclear about what a cryptocurrency is, check out some of the resources below. They give great explanations of Bitcoin and Ethereum, and blockchain, the underlying technology of which cryptocurrencies are built upon.
So let’s take our hypothetical 1 BTC from before and take a short position on Ethereum. We are able to borrow 2.5 BTC worth of ETH and sell it. 30 minutes later, the price of ETH has plummeted 10%. Now we can close our short position, buying back 2.5 BTC worth of ETH; except now, since the price has dropped, we are buying more ETH than what we sold. Our borrowed coin can be payed back and we take the rest as profit!
Continually doing these things can lead one to gradually cultivate a strategy: a collection of signals that one is good at recognizing and that have a consistent track record. Some traders only buy or sell once they see confluence: multiple signals indicating the same oncoming reversal or trend continuation at the same time. For instance, they might look for candlestick patterns indicating a reversal on both a short-time-interval chart (like a 15-minute chart) and on a long-time-interval chart (like a 4-hour chart).
If you are doing any active trading, set stop losses. For any coins not in your medium or long-term holds, always set stop losses. This is important for several reasons — the most obvious is mitigating your losses. But more importantly, you force yourself to decide on a point of acceptable loss, and because you now have a reference point, you are able to measure your effectiveness to keep or adjust for future trades. Sometimes, during a market dip, altcoins can plummet, and stop losses can lead to profitability by automatically selling for fiat that you can use to re-enter at lower prices.