An anonymous Ethereum investor has lost more than $2 million trading Ether (ETH) since Sept. 9, 2022, on-chain data shows.
Buying Ether high, selling low
Spotted by on-chain monitoring resource Lookonchain, the "stupid money" trader spent $12.5 million in stablecoins to buy 7,135 ETH after it rallied 10% to $1,790 in September 2022. But a subsequent correction forced the trader to sell the entire stash for $10.51 million.
As a result, the trader lost nearly $1.75 million. Interestingly, waiting and selling at today's price would have resulted in a smaller loss of $1.14 million.
The investor's trades reemerged in February as ETH price had risen by approximately 10%. Data shows that $7.65 million in ETH was acquired on Feb. 16, only for it to be sold eight hours later as ETH price dropped, resulting in a loss of another $324,000.
3 Ether investment lessons to learn
Traders can use such examples to learn from others' mistakes and reduce their investment risks with proven strategies. Let's take a look at some of the most basic tools that can help reduce losses.
Don't rely on just one fundamental
The investor first traded stablecoins for ETH on Sept. 12, just three days before the long-awaited transition from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake via the Merge upgrade.
The Merge, however, turned out to be a "sell-the-news" event. Thus, going extremely bullish on Ether based on one strong fundamental was a poor decision.
Moreover, going all in while relying on one indicator, particularly a widely-anticipated news event, is often a losing strategy, which is why traders should consider multiple factors before making a decision.
For instance, one such metric was institutional flows. Ether investment funds suffered outflows worth $61.6 million a week before the Merge, according to CoinShares' weekly report, suggesting that "smart money" was leaning bearish.
Hedge with put options
Hedging with options in Ether trading enables investors to purchase options contracts opposite their current open positions. Therefore, investors could mitigate risk by opening a put option contract against their bullish spot.
A put option gives a holder the right, but not the obligation, to sell ETH at a predetermined price on or before a particular date. So, if the spot Ether price drops, the investor could sell the asset at a pre-agreed price, thus protecting themself from losses in ETH's value.
Don't go all in; check momentum
Do not put all your eggs in one basket regardless of how much capital you can throw around.
Instead, entering a position in increments could be a safer strategy while keeping some funds on the sidelines. Thus, traders can buy ETH during a short- or long-term bull run but can spare some capital to buy during potential dips, while relying on multiple technical indicators for cues.
For instance, momentum oscillators like the relative strength index (RSI) reveal whether Ether is oversold or overbought on specific timeframes. So a strategy of going long when the RSI reading is close to or above the 70 and forming a lower high has a high chance of failure.
The Ethereum daily chart below shows the two instances when the above-mentioned investor bought ETH alongside the RSI forming a lower high.
Ultimately, traders' mistakes can serve as opportunities to learn what works for an investor and what doesn't. The main takeaway is that investors should enter a market with a definite plan based on their own analysis and risk appetite.
This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.