The crypto investing glossary

As someone new in the crypto trading industry, it is hard to keep track or even know most of the words used by investors and traders. However, knowing the meaning of the words and what they stand for will go a long way in helping you navigate the crypto space.


An address is a string of numbers and letters that serve as the bank account for an individual’s wallet or exchange account. Cryptocurrencies are sent directly to the address. Each cryptocurrency also has its address.


These are cryptocurrencies that were launched after Bitcoin. There are thousands of altcoins, and each of them has specific features. Examples: Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Cardano etc.


This is when a trader takes advantage of the difference in price of the same currency on two different exchange platform.


This acronym stands for All-Time-High. Most of the cryptos attained their all-time high back in December 2017.


A trader who still holds a currency after a pump and dump crash. This term is also used to describe a trader that holds a coin that is plunging in value with minimal prospects.


The expectation that the price of a coin is going to decrease. Bearish run means the price of the coin is plunging.


This a digital ledger that cannot be changed and it is the place where the history of every transaction is stored. The blockchain is the underlying technology behind almost all cryptos and is gaining widespread application in other aspects of the global economy.


This is a set of transactions that are processed and recorded forever on the blockchain network.

Bollinger Band

This refers to the margin around the price of a coin that shows when that coin has either been oversold or overbought.


This is the expectation that the price of a coin is going to increase. Bullish run means the price of the coin is surging.


Decentralized in the crypto space refers to a copy of the blockchain or digital ledger that exist on every device that is connected to the blockchain network. The exact copy of a certain information exists everywhere in the network instead of a central location as is popular with traditional financial institutions.

Distributed Ledger

This is the building block of decentralization. It is a list of transactions that are copied on every computer and software that is connected to the blockchain network. The distributed ledger is usually updated in every location simultaneously each time a transaction occurs.


These are websites where traders and investors can either buy or sell cryptocurrencies. Some of the popular exchanges include; Coinbase, Binance, Bittrex, Poloniex and several others.


These are the typical currencies that are issued by the governments of countries or regions. Example, Euro, Pounds Sterling, U.S Dollar, Yuan, Yen and hundreds of others. Fiat currencies are the physical currencies that are backed by the government and have been declared legal to use.


Stands for fear of missing out. This is an overwhelming sensation a trader gets when he/she wants to get on the train when the price of a coin begins to surge.


This acronym stands for; Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. This is negativity which is baseless and spread intentionally be sceptics that want the price of a coin to plunge.


An individual that is spreading FUD.

Going long

This is a margin trade that profits if the price of a coin increases.

Going short

This is a margin trade that profits if the price decreases.

Hard Fork

A scenario when the code or software that is used in designing a coin is changed in some significant way with the aim of improving some qualities of the digital currency such as its transaction speed. The altcoin Bitcoin Cash is a hard fork of Bitcoin.

Hash Rate

This is the speed of how much computing power is utilized in mining a coin on a particular network. A bigger hash rate favors the miner.


An acronym that stands for Hold On for Dear Life. The acronym started as a mistake when hold was mistakenly spelt and has ever since represented holding on to your coins and not selling.


Stands for Initial Coin Offering and operates similarly to an IPO in the stock market world. Startups in the crypto space usually issue their token in exchange for another coin such as ether, BTC or even XRP. Most of the ICOs are built on the ethereum network. ICOs among other crypto-related topics have been widely-covered in this article.

Limit order/limit buy/limit sell

This is an instruction given by traders to sell or buy a cryptocurrency when the price reaches a certain amount. They are also called for-sale.


Stands for Moving Average Convergence Divergence. This is a market indicator that depicts the relationship between two moving averages of prices.

Market order/market buy / market sell

This is simply the purchase or sells of a coin on an exchange at the current price.

Margin trading

This refers to a situation when a trader magnifies the intensity of their trades by risking their existing coins. It is a dangerous move, and only experienced traders are advised to do it.

Market Cap

This is the total value held in a cryptocurrency. The total market cap of a crypto is calculated by multiplying the total supply of a coin by the current price of a single coin.


This is a process where an individual uses computing power to process transactions on a blockchain network. Miners are rewarded with a fraction of the newly created crypto for each block they mine.

Private Key

This is a secret password to unlock your wallet. It is a confidential password and is never to be shared with anyone.

Pump and Dump

This is a situation where a coin gets lots of attention which leads to a sharp increase in price and then followed by a huge crash in its price. Pump and dump lead to some investors losing money as the coin becomes worthless after being dumped.

Public Key 

This is the key that is used to accept cryptocurrencies to a wallet.


Stands for Return on Investment. It is usually calculated by the percentage of how much has been made compared to how much has been invested.

Stable coin

This refers to a cryptocurrency that has extremely low volatility and can be used to trade against the overall crypto market.

Sell wall/buy wall

Traders use depth chart to know the current limit buy and sell points of a coin.


Stands for Trend Analysis or Technical Analysis. It is a process where traders examine the current charts of a coin to predict or determine which direction the market will move next.


These are the currencies of a project, and they are usually built on Ethereum’s network. Startups raise capital for their projects by issuing their tokens.


This is a digital store for your cryptocurrencies.


This is an investor or trader who owns a huge amount of cryptocurrency.


This is a technical write up that crypto projects, and companies provide to take an in-depth look at their plans.


The crypto trading world is an exciting one and the words defined in this article will help you understand the market better and how it works. There is still much to learn about the crypto space, therefore, always be on the lookout for the trends that will keep you updated with the crypto-world.