The cryptocurrency market is very well known for one thing, and that is volatility. The price of Bitcoin, or any given cryptocurrency can rise by 20% in the span of a few hours and just as easily fall by another 20% in the next few hours. Ultimately, some traders use this volatility to try and turn a profit. One such strategy that allows for this is swing trading.
A small number of cryptocurrency pairs. It is true. You will not find any altcoins from above the top 20. However, Bitstamp offers in its turn the possibility to work with hybrid pairs including USD and other fiats. The exchange can be used as your pass into the world of altcoins as you may buy BTC or ETH here and then transfer those cryptos to other exchanges with a wider range of pairs, which do not support fiat money.
Fundamentals cover things like crowd behavior and news flow. Crowd behavior means that when the “crowd” is piling in while the price is of a coin is pushing upward, maybe you will want to ride the momentum (with caution as these people may end up getting trapped within it), or it could be a situation where everyone is in the thing and now the coin is seeing a downturn, and they are all trying to piling out.
We know firsthand what it’s like to kick yourself over trades that haven’t worked or worked spectacularly yet not have the desired position size. All you can do is live in the now, the past is over. After all, hindsight is 20-20. It would’ve been nice to go all in when Bitcoin was $600 a year ago and cash out on a high return, but that’s not how it works. Imagine if you bought in 2013 when Bitcoin was 1,000, panicked when it dropped to 200 then sold? Imagine that sting. Hindsight is 20-20, we can’t predict the future. Learn from past successes and failures and apply it moving forward. Here are some tips, in our experience, for new cyrptocurrency investors.
TIP: A cryptocurrency wallet is a place where you store encrypted passwords that represent coins (the equivalent to storing money in a bank account). A cryptocurrency exchange is like a stock exchange or like a currency exchange in a foreign airport (a place people can trade cryptocurrency for other cryptocurrencies and fiat currencies like the US dollar). Just like if you want to trade stocks you need a bank account and access to the stock exchange, it is the same deal with cryptocurrency.
UPDATE October 1st 2018: Binance is still my favourite cryptocurrency exchange to trade on but I have changed my strategy big time over the last couple of months. I have been using a cryptocurrency trading bot to make my trades for me and have seen awesome results so far… This is the Notorious Bot – which is becoming pretty famous in Crypto circles. Using the bot reduces the time and stress involved with trading manually and maximises the potential for profit with minimal risk. Crypto trading bots are only really right for those who have a portfolio of at least 5k in cryptocurrency already, if you’re in that position have a read of this post where we review cryptocurrency trading bots and introduce you to the Notorious Bot.
Now that you have identified the coins to invest in, you need to find an entry point for your investment. Technical analysis has always been the best strategy for finding an entry point when investing in financial assets. The best way to use technical analysis in finding an entry point is to understand candle stick patterns. For instance, if you are looking to buy Bitcoin, then a bullish engulfing candle stick pattern on the weekly chart would be a good indicator that it is time to enter the market.
A successful strategy regarding this is placing very low buy orders. About a week ago a crazy dump occurred, selling off Augor coin down to 25% of its value! After a short while the market recovered slightly and anyone who had low buy these low orders could easily double or triple their investment. Placing buy orders requires special care, don’t wake up when you’re far away from the market to find your buy order is suddenly higher than the current market price!
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.
From a trader’s perspective Smith also discussed key BTC prices, namely the $5,800 support level and the $6,800 resistance level, noting that the recent lows of bitcoin are practically the same ones that were touched in April and February, earlier this year. Curiously, these were the same points BTC was trading at last October when bitcoin futures were announced and the price of the world’s most popular virtual currency skyrocketed.
Then there are the fundamental strategies. Some people say that fundamentals are the valuation of crypto, but it is challenging to value a cryptocurrency as there is no chart giving the earnings and the assets to derive a valuation from. Cryptocurrency is all about speculation, with one guy saying it’s worth a high price that reaches into the stratosphere while another says it’s worth squat.
In stocks, it makes sense to sell losers, but that isn’t always true in crypto. In stock trading, if a company is not doing well, it can be smarter to sell their stock and buy a stock that is doing well. In crypto, big changes can happen quickly. A bearish coin can make a turnaround at any support level or based on some good news or rumors and make 100% gains in a matter of hours. If you aren’t trading frequently and aren’t at a computer 24/7, it can be a solid move to slowly build a position in a coin that isn’t doing well, but that you think is a good long-term bet. The only exception to this rule is this, if you understand TA, it is generally wise to ladder out when all the short term averages have fully crossed under the long term and in when they have crossed over. Your goal is still the same, to build a position low and hold until highs, you are just practicing some risk management in between. This added measure helps protect you from long bear markets. In other words, only sell losers if you have a logical reason and trust yourself to buy back in. If not, focus on building average positions (but plan for the worst before it gets better). Bottomline on this: Stocks move much slower than cryptos. So a loser sold now and shifted to a winner can mean months upon months of rewards. Cryptos tend to move fast and go into bear and bull mode in groups and go on runs at the blink of an eye. Sell a loser today and shift it to a winner, and trends could be changing by the time you wake up. It isn’t that you should never sell the losers and buy the winners, it is that it is trickier in crypto than it is in stocks and the same logic doesn’t apply exactly.
A “manageable amount” is obviously subjective and will vary for each person based on things such as time available to dedicate to trading. Feel free to do your own research to find the right exchange for you. I tend to value user experience of an exchange over the amount of coins on it. Ultimately, what exchanges you use is going to depend on your own personal preferences. GDAX and Poloniex will provide sufficient resources needed to be a successful trader, so they are definitely a good place to start.
This is the perfect opportunity for investors with the available funds to buy the undervalued cryptocurrencies. As a trader, you use your expertise to assess the market conditions and fundamentals to predict when the market is most undervalued and likely to make a recovery soon. Then, just make your trades and hold out during the period of fear and uncertainty, all while making a nice profit when the market returns to sanity.
One fact of trading that’s best to make peace with is that you’re never going to perfectly time your buys and sells. What are the chances you’re going to purchase at the exact bottom and sell at the exact top, coupled with putting enough capital into the trade to make a dent in your wealth. Trading is not cut in dry in the sense that there is only one set path to take. Every person has different goals in investing and trading, and cryptocurrency trading is similar in that regard.
Another very common mistake beginners make is spending all their trading money in one go. If you find a good entry, you should buy in with a percentage of your funds (50% - 60%) and hold the rest to see whether your entry works. This way, even if a coin drops following your purchase, you can average it down by buying more at the dip. Similarly, if the uptrend continues, you can always buy more, and even though this approach reduces your profit margins, it secures your position and prevents you from being all-in on a trade that goes south.
EDIT: #10 Bonus (Suggested by @kerstenwirth ) — always check the ticker symbol. Ticker symbols are not universal, and may vary from exchange to exchange in rare cases. Those cases, though, can come back to bite you. For example, Bitcoin Cash trades on some exchanges as BCH, while it trades on others as BCC. BCC is also the ticker symbol for BitConnect, which was recently outted as a Ponzi Scheme. If you bought BCC under the impression was Bitcoin Cash, you would’ve lost a lot of money.