Bitcoin not ready to soar as investors await Fed Chair speech, more earnings

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’

By Sam Reynolds,

6th February 2023 – (Washington) Major digital asset prices traded flat over the weekend, with bitcoin and ether down 1.7% and ether 2.3%, respectively over the weekend.

After a mediocre start to earnings season, investors are thought to be looking ahead to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s speech, scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, before making any big moves.

FactSet data shows that less than 1% of the companies in the S&P 500 reported earnings that were above estimates. This is below the 5-year average of 8.6%, and the 10-year average of 6.4%.

“As a result, the earnings decline for the fourth quarter is larger today compared to the end of last week and compared to the end of the quarter,” FactSet’s senior earnings analyst John Butters wrote in a Friday market update. “If the index reports an actual decline in earnings for Q4 2022, it will mark the first year-over-year decline in earnings reported by the index since Q3 2020.”

Speaking late last week on CoinDesk TV, David Siemer, the CEO of accounting software provider Wave Financial, said that the market is giving mixed signals – strong job numbers, but mediocre earnings results – and he still expects a recession this year, albeit a weak one.

“I am a little more optimistic that it won’t be quite as severe recession as in a great recession or major, major recession,” he said, pointing to the resilience of consumers. “The fact that the Fed’s actions are having such a slow effect doesn’t mean cumulatively they won’t eventually have a major effect. We’re probably still a quarter or two away from seeing what the Fed’s actions have really actually done to the economy.”

And what does this mean to crypto prices, looking forward? BitBull Capital’s Joe DiPasquale wrote in a note to CoinDesk that crypto markets are “optimistic” after a modest rate increase and bitcoin will “oscillate around the $20K support level for the next few months, barring other unforeseen events and market action.”

Meanwhile, the U.S. Dollar Index (DXY) is opening the Asia trading week at 103.12, staying in what many analysts call a “defensive” position. The measure of the world’s largest fiat asset spent most of last year surging, hitting stock and crypto prices hard. Year-to-date it’s down 1.4%.