A Beginner’s Guide To Bitcoin And Cryptocurrency Technical Analysis July, 2024

Explore the fundamentals of cryptocurrency technical analysis through our introductory manual, empowering you to refine your trading acumen and gain a deeper market understanding of digital assets.

Last updated Apr 3, 2024
7 minute read
Written by Nikolas Sargeant

Trading and investing in cryptocurrency require a deep understanding of both the specific cryptocurrency in focus and the broader crypto market. Technical and fundamental analysis serve as the cornerstones of investment research. Success in this arena hinges on a carefully crafted strategy which considers several key factors:

  • Determining an optimal entry point for purchasing a coin,
  • Assessing potential returns or anticipated price growth, and
  • Estimating the timeframe needed to achieve desired price levels.

Fundamental analysts scrutinize macroeconomic and microeconomic trends, industry conditions, and competitive dynamics to gauge the value of an asset. Conversely, technical analysts interpret market sentiment through pattern recognition and trend analysis, utilizing historical data like price and volume to forecast price movements.

In this beginner-friendly guide, we aim to demystify cryptocurrency technical analysis, providing essential tools, techniques, and strategies to identify trends, predict price movements, and make informed decisions in the dynamic world of digital assets, benefiting newcomers and experienced investors alike.

The market integrates all information to set asset prices, including current, historical, and anticipated factors like demand and regulations in Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. Prices reflect market expectations and knowledge about each coin, guiding technicians in analyzing price movements to predict future trends.

Price movements exhibit patterns rather than randomness, often adhering to trends, whether short or long-term. Once a trend is established, it tends to persist rather than abruptly reverse. Technicians aim to identify and capitalize on these trends through technical analysis.

In technical analysis, the focus lies more on the "what" (the price of a coin) rather than the "why" (individual variables influencing price movements). While various factors may contribute to price fluctuations, technicians primarily assess supply and demand dynamics to inform their analyses.

Additionally, technical analysts recognize the propensity for history to repeat itself, allowing for the anticipation of market psychology. Traders frequently respond in similar ways to comparable stimuli, enabling technicians to discern patterns and potentially predict future market behavior.

Traders employing technical analysis typically rely on specific terminology and metrics derived from charts and historical price action to assess market trends. Below are a few examples.

You’ll hear these terms used all the time in trading. Horizontal lines denote support and resistance levels. These levels reflect the current supply and demand dynamics of the coin. Support levels indicate strong buying interest, creating a "floor" of buyers, halting declines, and sometimes sparking upward momentum. Conversely, resistance levels represent areas with abundant sellers, forming a supply zone, causing the coin to retreat upon nearing it.

But Traders often navigate between support and resistance levels, buying near support and selling near resistance, particularly during periods of sideways movement. Breakouts from these levels typically reinforce existing trends. A resistance level turning into support further strengthens the trend, confirmed by subsequent tests from above. However, false breakouts occur, necessitating additional indicators like trading volume for trend confirmation.

Trend lines are essential for crypto traders but can be challenging to spot amid volatility. Technicians identify upward trends with higher highs and downward trends with lower lows. Sideways trends indicate minimal movement, while trends vary in duration: short, intermediate, and long term.

Drawing accurate trend lines is crucial. Identify the lowest (or highest) price of each candle to place the line accurately. Extend the line to touch subsequent candles and adjust accordingly. Auto-extend the line using chart settings for convenience. This method applies to various chart applications.

Trading volume is pivotal in trend identification. Strong trends correlate with high trading volume, whereas weak trends align with low trading volume. During a downturn, it's prudent to assess the accompanying volume. High-volume increases and low-volume declines mark healthy long-term growth. Moreover, observing volume trends over time is crucial. Decreasing volume during upswings signals a potential end to the upward trend, and vice versa during a downturn.

Another valuable tool in technical analysis, particularly for cryptocurrencies, is moving averages, simplifying trend recognition. Moving averages are derived from the average price of a coin over a specific timeframe. For instance, a 20-day moving average calculates the coin's average price over the past 20 trading days. Connecting these averages forms a line.

It's crucial to note the exponential moving average (EMA), which assigns more weight to recent price values compared to older ones. For example, in a 15-day EMA, the calculation coefficient of the last five trading days is double that of the previous ten days. In practical terms, if a shorter-term moving average, like the 10-day, crosses above a longer-term moving average, such as the 30-day, it suggests a potential positive trend.

As well as this terminology and the market indicators, there are some other ways in which you can determine market trends and make predictions, based on some evidence, as to how things will unfold in the cryptocurrency market. Here are some:

  • Simple Moving Average (SMA) — The Simple Moving Average (SMA) is a widely used technical analysis indicator calculated by averaging a series of prices over a specified period. For instance, if the three most recent prices are 1, 2, and 3, the SMA would be (1+2+3) / 3 = 2. It's plotted on the chart alongside each bar, forming a line that adjusts as new prices are added, helping to smooth out price fluctuations and determine the overall trend direction.
  • Exponential Moving Average (EMA) — The Exponential Moving Average (EMA) prioritizes recent prices, serving as a trend indicator for traders. It suggests buying near or above the EMA line and selling below it, reacting faster than the Simple Moving Average (SMA) for trading signals.
  • Relative Strength Index (RSI) — The Relative Strength Index (RSI) is a widely used oscillator indicator that gauges whether an asset is overbought or oversold within a range of 0 to 100. It helps traders identify entry and exit points in volatile markets, making it a valuable tool for cryptocurrency traders.
  • Stochastic RSI — Traders often enhance their analysis using tools like Stochastic RSI to delve deeper into market sensitivity. Unlike simpler indicators, Stochastic RSI derives its data from other indicators, combining a stochastic oscillator formula with the regular RSI, and operates within a range of 0 to 100.
  • Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) — The Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) indicator is well-known, calculated by subtracting two EMAs to form the mainline, then creating a signal line from the first line. The MACD histogram, derived from the difference between these lines, helps identify bullish crossovers above zero and bearish crossovers below zero for trading strategies.
  • Bollinger Bands (BB) — Bollinger Bands (BB), a popular oscillator, feature two lateral bands around a Moving Average line, aiding in identifying overbought/oversold conditions and gauging market volatility. Derived from a simple moving average (SMA), they assist in trend determination, volatility measurement, and reversal forecasting.
  • Price Action Trading — Price action traders analyze price fluctuations and volume charts to predict future movements, focusing on trends and pullbacks to enter or exit positions profitably. Understanding price dynamics helps determine market direction, with traders identifying swing highs, swing lows, and trendlines between support and resistance levels.
  • Candlesticks Analysis — Candlestick charts, pioneered by a Japanese rice trader, provide traders with a quick overview of price movements and market dynamics. These charts help identify trends, support/resistance levels, and trading patterns based on body size, wick length, and color.

  • Pivot Point Trading — Cryptocurrency traders rely on pivot points for objective support and resistance levels, calculated from the previous period's high, low, and close. These levels help identify market trends and potential bullish or bearish signals.
  • Fibonacci Trading — Fibonacci retracements assist traders in predicting market prices by identifying support and resistance levels based on past price action. When combined with indicators like MACD and Moving Averages, they provide stronger trade signals, helping traders anticipate market deviations in the cryptocurrency market.

Crypto technical analysis aims to analyze cryptocurrency movements and predict future trends, leveraging the tendency of financial instruments to repeat previous price patterns. However, it's important to recognize that technical analysis isn't foolproof, and employing it doesn't guarantee perfect signals. Professional analysts continually assess signal weaknesses and prioritize risk management.

Traders should grasp the logic behind Bitcoin movements and employ a trade management system for tracking. While mastering technical analysis requires time and effort, it can yield consistent returns. Combining technical and fundamental analysis offers a balanced approach, providing valuable insights for both short-term traders and long-term investors in navigating the cryptocurrency market.


Nikolas Sargeant

Nik is a content and public relations specialist with an ever-growing interest in Crypto. He has been published on several leading Crypto and blockchain based news sites. He is currently based in Spain, but hails from the Pacific Northwest in the US.


What is technical analysis, and why is it important in cryptocurrency trading?

Technical analysis involves studying past market data, primarily price and volume, to predict future price movements. It helps traders identify trends, support and resistance levels, and potential entry and exit points for trades. In the volatile world of cryptocurrency, where prices can change rapidly, technical analysis provides valuable insights into market behavior.

What are the key tools and indicators used in cryptocurrency technical analysis?

Some common tools and indicators include moving averages, Relative Strength Index (RSI), Bollinger Bands, MACD (Moving Average Convergence Divergence), Fibonacci retracement levels, and candlestick patterns. These tools help traders analyze price action and make informed decisions about when to buy or sell cryptocurrencies.

Can technical analysis accurately predict the future price movements of cryptocurrencies?

While technical analysis can provide valuable insights into market trends and behavior, it's essential to understand that it's not foolproof. Market sentiment, news events, regulatory developments, and other factors can influence cryptocurrency prices in ways that technical analysis alone may not capture. Therefore, it's crucial to use technical analysis alongside other forms of analysis and risk management strategies.

How can beginners get started with learning technical analysis for cryptocurrency trading?

Beginners can start by familiarizing themselves with basic technical analysis concepts and tools through online resources, books, and tutorials. It's also beneficial to practice analyzing cryptocurrency charts using trading platforms that offer technical analysis tools. Additionally, joining online communities and forums dedicated to cryptocurrency trading can provide valuable insights and support from experienced traders.

What are some common mistakes to avoid when using technical analysis for cryptocurrency trading?

One common mistake is relying solely on technical analysis without considering fundamental factors that can impact cryptocurrency prices. It's also essential to avoid overtrading based on signals from technical indicators, as this can lead to losses. Additionally, beginners should avoid using leverage or margin trading until they have a solid understanding of technical analysis and risk management strategies. Finally, it's crucial to continuously educate oneself and adapt to changing market conditions to improve trading performance over time.