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Bitcoin consolidates above $23k as investors await the Fed's verdict on interest rates

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(Kitco News) - Cryptos continued to consolidate on Tuesday as the volatile month of February comes to a close after enforcement actions by the Securities and Exchange Commission and news that companies like Mastercard are pausing new crypto partnerships until conditions in the market improve.

The traditional market also limped across the finish line, with the S&P, Dow and Nasdaq finishing the last day of February in the red, down 0.3%, 0.71%, and 0.1% respectively.

Data provided by TradingView shows that Bitcoin (BTC) traded within a range between $23,300 and $23,800 throughout the day as neither the bulls nor the bears managed to take control of the price action to cause a noteworthy price change.

BTC/USD 4-hour chart. Source: TradingView

March Bitcoin futures prices were “a bit firmer in early U.S. trading Tuesday,” according to Kitco senior technical analyst Jim Wyckoff, who said that “Bulls still have the overall near-term technical advantage as a price uptrend is in place on the daily chart, but just barely.”

Wyckoff warned that “Bulls have faded recently and need to show fresh power soon to keep the uptrend alive and to keep their technical edge.”

Heavy resistance at $25k

According to analysts at Arcane Research, “Bitcoins' momentum halted last week after failing to break through the $25,000 resistance” following a higher-than-expected PCE reading that resulted in the market readjusting its interest rate hike expectations for the March FOMC meeting.

“Apart from the PCE reading, last week was relatively quiet, and we note no relevant changes to the market structure or general sentiment,” Arcane Research said.

According to Vetlee Lunde, senior analyst at Arcane Research, the “short-term outlook has improved after a slow but SEC-heavy February and a BTC push toward $28k could happen sooner rather than later.”

Lunde noted that the next resistance level after $25,000 is at $28,000, and he expects the market to push in this direction in March.

“Like clockwork, BTC failed to break through the $25k resistance established in August and is still oscillating inside its post-credit-crisis trading range,” Lunde wrote. “From a technical perspective, $25k is important. This area briefly held support as Do Kwon’s House of Cards collapsed and has since been a key resistance area.”

As for what to watch for until such time as BTC is able to climb above $25,000, Eight Global founder Michaël van de Poppe posted the following tweet highlighting the need to flip $23,800 into support and identified $22,500 as a good entry point for a long position.

Four altcoins rise while the rest consolidate

On the whole, the altcoin market consolidated alongside Bitcoin on Tuesday, but four tokens in the top 200 managed to post double-digit gains in the face of adversity.

Daily cryptocurrency market performance. Source: Coin360

Liquity (LQTY) was by far the top performer, gaining 65.13% on the day to trade at $2.07, while SingularityNET (AGIX) increased 15.9%, Nervos Network (CKB) climbed 12.78%, and ImmutableX (IMX) gained 11.71%.

The overall cryptocurrency market cap now stands at $1.058 trillion, and Bitcoin’s dominance rate is 42.3%.

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