It is worth mentioning that, financial markets move in trends. People should understand the differences between these trends to be able to make better investment decisions. Notably, different market trends can lead to wildly different market conditions. As a reminder, a market trend is the overall direction that the market is going. Importantly, in a bear market, prices are generally declining. Bear markets can be challenging to trade or invest in, especially for novice traders.
It is worth noting that, most crypto traders and technical analysts agree that Bitcoin has been a micro bull trend throughout its existence. However, there have been several relentless cryptocurrency bear markets.
Let’s have a look at a bear market. As a reminder, a bear market can be described as a period of declining prices in the financial market. People should keep in mind that, bear markets can be extremely risky and difficult to trade inexperienced traders. Moreover, they can easily lead to great losses and scare investors from ever returning to the financial markets.
However, bull markets can also have phases of euphoria. Importantly, during these times, prices are increasing at an extreme rate. Correlations are higher than usual, and a majority of assets are going up in tandem. As a reminder, usually, investors are “bearish” in a bear market, meaning that they expect prices to decline. Furthermore, this also means that market sentiment is generally quite low.
Nevertheless, this may not mean that all market participants are in active short positions. Interestingly, this just means that they expect prices to decline and might be looking to position themselves correspondingly if the opportunity presents itself.
Bear market and a bull market
People should take into account that, the difference is fairly straightforward. Importantly, in a bull market, prices are going up, while in a bear market, prices fall.
Interestingly, one notable difference might be that bear markets can have long periods of consolidation, i.e., sideways or ranging price action. Notably, these are times when market volatility is quite low, and there’s little trading activity happening. Importantly, the same may be true in bull markets. This kind of behavior tends to be more frequent in bear markets. As a reminder, after all, prices going down for an extended period is not very attractive for most investors.
Moreover, something else to consider is whether it’s possible to enter a short position on an asset in the first place. Importantly, if there’s no ability to short an asset on margin or using derivatives, traders can only express a bearish view on the market by selling for cash or stablecoins. As a reminder, this can lead to a longer, drawn-out downtrend with little buying interest, resulting in a slow and uneventful sideways price action.
It is worth noting that, one of the simplest strategies traders can use in a bear market is to stay in cash (or stablecoins). However, if a person is not comfortable with prices declining, it may be better to simply wait until the market gets out of this territory. Moreover, if there’s an expectation that a new bull market may come at some point in the future, a trader can take advantage of it when it does.
Interestingly, when it comes to trading and investing, it’s generally a better idea to trade with the direction of the market trend. Notably, this is why another lucrative strategy in bear markets could be to open short positions. As a result, this way when asset prices are going down, traders can profit off the decline.
Importantly, these can be day trades, swing trades, position trades. Interestingly, the main intention is simply to trade in the direction of the trend. Nevertheless, many contrarian traders will search for “counter-trend” trades, meaning trades that are against the direction of the major trend.