Bear Market Update
Crypto markets hit 2-year price lows. We’ll tell you what’s driving the price-drop and how to prepare for a crypto-winter.
On Monday, the crypto markets took another historic tumble as Bitcoin and Ethereum both saw price-drops of more than 20% - and for the first time in nearly 2 years the total market cap of all cryptocurrencies shrunk below $1T.
“Experts say that the crypto collapse on Monday is yet another sign of the risk-averse sentiment in markets, as investors flee to safer bets amid a backdrop of rising rates and recession fears.” - Forbes
Monday’s crash comes days after the announcement that U.S. inflation hit a four-decade high,
up 8.6% from last May.
“The all items index increased 8.6 percent for the 12 months ending May, the largest 12-month increase since the period ending December 1981.” - U.S.Bureau of Labor Statistics
More fear and panic swept through the crypto markets Monday morning when Celsius, a crypto lending app with over $11b in assets and 1.7 million customers, announced they would be suspending all withdrawals and restricting user activity on their platform.
“Due to extreme market conditions, today we are announcing that Celsius is pausing all withdrawals, Swap, and transfers between accounts... We are working with a singular focus: to protect and preserve assets to meet our obligations to customers.” - Celsius
As the $CEL token price plunged by 70%, speculators were left wondering if it would be the next crypto to go to $0 - following the devastation of the Terra Luna collapse in early May.
It may be worth mentioning here that the Terra collapse and the Celsius debacle are not the
causes of the bear market - they’re symptoms. The markets are more broadly impacted by the
macro economic factors in play, such as rising inflation, ongoing war in Ukraine, and supply
“Our clients are far more worried about macro [economics] than Celsius. The market is just very frothy and the macro environment is terrible” said Aya Kantorovic of FalconX. - The Block
*A frothy market describes conditions where stock prices artificially increase based on
market sentiment, not business fundamentals. - Business Insider
Why is the macro view so bleak?
The Federal Reserve announced on Wednesday it will hike interest rates by 0.75% percentage points, the biggest increase since 1994, as part of its ongoing campaign to fight inflation. - CNBC
The three things on everyone's minds when it comes to the macro economy are (1) inflation / recession (2) the ongoing war in Ukraine, and (3) global supply chain shortages.
1. High inflation in the U.S. and EU sparks fears of an oncoming (or ongoing) recession,
as the Federal Reserve enacts interest rate hikes to slow growth and curb economic
2. The war in Ukraine dredges on, exacerbating price hikes on food and energy
3. Supply chains are negatively impacted by the ongoing Covid lockdowns in China and
war in Ukraine.
The recent downturn does not come as a surprise. Some big names in finance have been
sounding the alarm for months.
“JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon first warned about the significantlyincreased odds of a recession in April, arguing ng war in Ukraine, high inflation, and the Federal Reserve’s hawkish monetary policy could combine to create serious economic pain for average Americans.” - Fortune
In April, Deutsche Bank predicted that the U.S. is headed for a “major” recession by
“Two shocks in recent months, the war in Ukraine and the buildup of momentum in elevated U.S. and European inflation, have caused us to revise down our forecast for global growth significantly,” a Deutsche Bank team led by economist David Folkerts-Landau wrote. “We are now projecting a recession in the U.S.…within the next two years.” - Fortune
At this point, we’re left to wonder…
Are we at the bottom yet?
With Bitcoin down 69% and Ethereum down 75% from all-time highs made in November - we’re all wondering if we’re at the bottom of the bear yet.
According to research from Glassnode Insights published on May 24th,
“The Bitcoin market has entered a phase coincident with the deepest and darkest bear cycles of the past. On-chain volume fundamentals have deteriorated and even long-term holders are now realizing significant losses. Historically, this phase has taken on the order of 8 to 24 months to pass by as the market hammers out a final bottom.”
The Crypto Fear and Greed Index, which analyzes emotions and sentiments from different
sources and crunch them into one simple number, is in historically fearful territory.
Arthur Hayes, crypto enthusiast and co-founder of 100x Group, has this to say:
“Politics must align with the macroeconomic environment to produce the catalyst for crypto to exit the current bear market. While the bottom is in (I hope), it doesn’t mean prices will automatically resume a quick ascent towards $70,000 and $5,000 for Bitcoin and Ether respectively.” (12)
While there’s no way of knowing for sure if we’ve reached the bottom of this cycle or not, we can reflect on lessons learned and prepare ourselves for what’s ahead.
Where do we go from here?
Let’s start by looking at some of the lessons learned from this current crypto market bear cycle.
1. Not all stablecoins are created equal. Billions of dollars were lost when UST, the
algorithmic stablecoin, lost its peg to the U.S. dollar. $DAI and $USDC are industry
leading stablecoins worth exploring.
2. Not your keys, not your crypto. Once you hand over custody of your crypto, whether
it's to a lending platform such as Celsius, or an exchange like Binance, you’re no longer
in control of that crypto and you can be locked out from accessing it.
3. There are no bailouts in crypto. There is no “too big to fail”. Crypto can go to zero -
although certainly nobody hopes or thinks that will happen.
Market experts and crypto businesses alike are preparing for a long crypto-winter - in large part due to the troublesome macro economics at play.
It’s time for us to settle in for the long haul. We don’t know how long the bear market will last -
but we do know that eventually it will end - and with it, new opportunities for generational wealth will emerge.
Here are some tips to help you through this crypto winter:
2. Learn crypto by using crypto. Here are 8 crypto projects worth exploring this bear
3. Build your strategy. When the bear market ends, you want to be ready.
4. Take your mind off crypto. Yeah, get off the computer. Unplug. Enjoy nature. Enjoy the
summer. Prioritize your mental health!
That’s it for now, folks.
Stay safe out there and happy crypto-ing.