One of the most commonly spouted tenets of cryptocurrency trading is “past performance is never an indicator of future success.” However, when the same pattern occurs three years in a row at almost exactly the same time, it can be easy to question the validity of this statement.
In this case, we are talking about the fact that Bitcoin (BTC) has witnessed a significant pump for the past three years at the beginning of January—gaining between 10% and 24% in the first week of the new year.
When Bitcoin Goes Up…
With gains of between up to 24% seen for the last three years in a row, you might be forgiven for thinking that similar gains are almost certain for 2020. Unfortunately, this isn’t guaranteed to be the case, since the markets rarely follow such a predictable pattern.
Nonetheless, at the highest end of the range, assuming Bitcoin replicates the 24.3% gain seen in early 2018, then a value of around $9,050 could be seen within a week. Conversely, at the lowest end of the range, an 11.8% gain would push Bitcoin back up to $8,590—a value last seen in mid-November 2019. Because of this, it’s certainly worth paying attention to the market over the next few days—just in case the trend repeats itself for the fourth time.
Since the Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrency markets are largely driven by changes in trader sentiment, it wouldn’t be a complete surprise if this prediction becomes a demonstrator of a so-called self-fulfilling prophecy—whereby the expectation of an event leads to the event actually occurring.
In this case, people expecting Bitcoin to rise in January could lead to increased investment, thereby altering the dynamics of BTC supply and demand and boosting its price.
…Must it Come Down?
Although Bitcoin has pumped at the start of the new year for three years running, what comes next has an even stronger trend in recent years—and it’s not good news for many traders.
According to data compiled by Twitter user (@BohoCrypto), Bitcoin has seen a significant dump in mid-January for the past five years running. These dumps have been large enough to easily wipe out any gains made from the early January pump, and can often be considered one of the largest dumps of the year.
For the past five years, Bitcoin has dumped by at least 15% beginning from mid-January, whereas this has been as high as 50% in the past. Should this happen for the sixth time in a row, Bitcoin could potentially fall to its lowest value since 2017. With that said, those with a keen eye might be able to turn a significant profit during this time by shorting the market.
Although the reasons behind this cycle remain unclear, some have speculated that the frequent January sell-off occurs as a side effect of the Chinese New Year. During this time, cash-strapped investors could look to sell their holdings in order to participate in Hong Bao—the tradition of giving away red envelopes filled with cash to friends and family.
Whatever the case, it remains to be seen whether 2020 will continue what is apparently becoming one of the more reliable Bitcoin market trends.