Since all of the virtual currencies remain a speculative asset, investors should avoid buying them for their retirement portfolios, says Jason Spatafora, co-founder of Marijuanastocks.com and a Miami-based trader and investor. Cryptocurrencies made up less than 2 percent of his portfolio a few months ago, but he is no longer trading them because of the extreme volatility.
Bittrex is a US based crypto exchange platform that allows you to trade in large numbers of trading pairs. You’ll also be able to get all the major cryptocurrencies on the platform including litecoin, darkcoin, and nextcoin. Along with this, it also offers Ethereum and Neucoin. If you are looking for a platform that offers reliable security, then Bittrex is the right choice for you as it offers 2FA and is well-regulated and compliant with the rules of the United States.
TIP: The tips and tricks below shouldn’t be mistaken for professional investment advice; instead this is basic friendly advice to mull over. If you want professional investment advice, consult a fiduciary. For a shorter list that zeros in on some key points, see: 5 Tips for New Crypto Traders. See also, how to trade and invest in cryptocurrency and our crypto investing / trading starter kit.
The No. 1 thing you’ll need to keep in mind when it comes to cryptocurrency trading is that the price is extremely volatile. Where certain trade techniques used in forex might take months to come to fruition, in cryptocurrency trading, it could only take hours or days. While this is beneficial when it comes to making a profit, it could also be your downfall if the price moves the other way.
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You could try this instead: Be sure to watch an exchange’s order book to better understand the actual prices you can get for the amount of cryptocurrency you’re trading. Consider breaking your order into smaller pieces to get a better price, or use a trading algorithm that lets you execute your larger order as a stealth order at the top of the order book.
Use small buy-ins, and don’t margin trade or short unless you know your stuff. The smaller your bet is compared to your total investable funds, the less risk you are taking on every bet (one of many insanely important things we are covering here). Putting it all on black is tempting, but then if it comes up red, you have nothing left to invest. Live to fight another day by learning to manage your buy-in size. As a rule of thumb invest 1% or less per buy-in (yes, that small, really; losing 100% of 1% leaves you with 99%, losing 1% of 100% leaves you with 99%. Small bids offer the same bet, but with way less risk). Put reward aside and practice risk management and capital preservation until you are very experienced (and thus, by logical extension: don’t margin trade or short unless you know what you are doing, as those leveraged bets magnify your risk by their very nature). See Kelly criterion.
So I decided to take a peek at github, here's what I saw 11,200 repositories for bitcoin vs 3,563 for ethereum. **for non technical folks - repositories are where developers are storing code for projects** However, you have to note that Bitcoin was released in January 2009 and Ethereum was released in July 2015. Total volume isn't the best measure, let's take a look at the languages used.
Common sense doesn't apply for some traders. In October, Spatafora started trading bitcoin, litecoin and ethereum to learn about the market and understand whether any of the coins were undervalued. Instead, he found that many of the investors exhibited irrational exuberance in believing the virtual currencies would never stop their climb in the market.
There are some people who believe that Bitcoin is the only blockchain based protocol which has value and that all others will fail. These people are known as Bitcoin maximalists and their belief is based on economics, specifically Austrian economics, and that the technology which is great for Bitcoin is not useful for anything else. I am more open minded and believe that there are other applications of the technology which will create sustainable ecosystems but I could be proved wrong here. It is important to spend time doing your own research and building up your own view on where the technology may be used.
Sub or Substratum is another open-source network with a huge focus on decentralizing the web and on “making the internet a free and fair place for the entire world.” This platform allows content creators to freely host their websites or applications on Substratum host, without any censorship blocks. Network users can then “run” Sub nodes and help the content get forwarded to end web users, who can access all Sub content in regular web browsers without any blocks or limits in shape of censorship.
Stop limit orders are really only useful when selling coins. They allow us to set a condition: we specify a price, and if the price becomes less than or equal to that price, a market order is automatically placed for us. The advantage here is that if we need to step away and will not be able to watch the price, we have some protection if the market begins to plummet. The disadvantage is that we are counting on there being good buy orders available to fulfill our sells. If a massive amount of market sell orders were to be executed right before your stop is triggered, it’s technically possible to be left with the bottom of the barrel. This has happened before, but is not common.
Although I profited, I wasn’t sure if I just had a lucky month. I wanted to formalize my trading knowledge so I could do more than buy low and sell high. There had to be a real strategy to this stuff. I read as many books as I could on trading stocks and foreign exchange markets. I made a lot of mistakes. But eventually I found my rhythm and strategies.
As was mentioned above, there are two ways to examine investment in Altcoins – vs Bitcoin and vs the US dollar. This is a common mistake amongst those who missed the Bitcoin train, and are looking to cash in on the other altcoins. Those investors have to examine the investment dollar-wise, since they exchange US dollars or out FIAT in order to buy crypto (instead of buying with the Bitcoins they already have).
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If you are a big player, keep in mind you can distort the price (thus, you might actually want to margin trade… or like, spot trade and help us lift the market 😀 ). Volume is decent on any given crypto exchange, but this isn’t like trading the S&P. If you are playing with 50BTC, and you try to buy or sell that much at once, you can distort the market temporarily. When you watch buy and sell orders in an exchange, you’ll notice that when sells ball up the price tends to drop and when buys ball up the price tends to go up. If you try to buy or sell too hard, you can drag the price up or down a little. If you have insanely deep pockets, you can accidentally be dipping your toes in at-best-grey-area behavior. It is much better etiquette to buy and sell in amounts that are average for the book you are buying on. When a high-level investor buys ten billion worth of a stock or sells, they do it in chunks (to avoid dropping or spiking the price of the asset). TIP: Also watch out for shady people pumping or dumping a coin by doing this. What looks like a lot of buyers could be one person or a group messing with the price. The lack of regulation is a blessing and a curse with crypto, as is the relatively low volume compared to other asset types.
As we learned before, identifying one identifier does not make an opportunity. Technical analysis is your friend. If you’re trading with the breakout strategy, and you see a pattern that signals a possible breakout forming, use multiple indicators like volume and RSI to verify your hypothesis. If you check for 3 indicators and 2 of them confirm your hypothesis, only then should you feel confident opening a position.
Ideally, a rookie trader should start by choosing a reliable exchange and playing with popular coins, such as Bitcoin or Ethereum. However, the learning by doing approach is too slow for those who want to succeed fast. Joining a community of like-minded traders could be one of the best decisions to make: there are plenty of groups on Telegram or regular meetups in the US and other countries.
Read Part 2 of BTCManager’s series, ‘A Guide to Trading Cryptocurrency,’ here. In Part 3, we look again at another complicated trading style that focuses on your inner self and human behavior. Markets are chaotic. Cryptocurrency markets, even more so. But just because the markets are random and sentiment can shift rapidly does not mean you cannot profit from fluctuations…
Watch out for Spoofers and market manipulation. Welcome to the wild west, the sheriff is out-of-town, enter the saloon at your own risk. Spoofing caused the flash crash of 2010 in the regulated stock market, and that happens times 10 in crypto. A too-good-to-be-true price spike or dip is often the work of either market manipulators, bots, or both. Know what to avoid and what to look for by reading our article on cryptocurrency and spoofing.
A quick look at the Bitcoin price over the last few years reveals a strong upward trend, but also times where the price was over and undervalued. Since most buyers and sellers are regular people and not professional traders, the cryptocurrency market is extremely sensitive to media hype and news stories. When the news is good, people rush to buy overvalued cryptocurrencies. When something bad happens, they panic and sell their coins at below their true value.
Take profits. Some investors think “taking profits” is a dirty phrase, but it is a rather conservative strategy none-the-less. Taking profits can result in you making less money than you would have if you did nothing and just “let it ride”… but that is only true if Bitcoin goes up over the long term. If you have hefty profits, consider taking them off the table, and then waiting for a lower price in the future. Worst case, you can buy back in at a higher price later (leaving some potential profits on the table). TIP: If a coin just went up 400%… consider taking some profits. Cryptocurrency almost always corrects at some point after a big run. I personally would say HODLing after making 400% gains is called GREED. I won’t ever sell my full stack in one chunk, but I’m going to start averaging out when the MACD turns bearish after a 400% – 1,000% run if the run was somewhat organic. If the run was the result of a pump and dump, then I will likely take it all off the table quickly. Pump and dumps are frustrating events, like I said, watch out for manipulation.
I prefer to trade on decentralized exchanges. For myself, I made a choice in the form of ethnermium.сom. They have a huge number of coins. There are no minimum restrictions on trade and fees are so insignificant that you will not notice them. I also think the advantage of the easy creation of a wallet like MeW and easy integration with metamasks and a high level of security
If you’re only buying Bitcoin, Ether and other currencies in order to sell them at a profit a short time later, then the investment is turning into speculation. You can trade the different tokens on a digital currency exchange (which are designed for trading fiat money for crypt currencies) or a crypto currency exchange (crypto for crypto). There are dozens of different exchanges that we’ll describe in detail in the guide.