Bitcoin (BTC) may gain another 50% before seeing a mass sell-off to complete its bear market, new research predicts.In the latest edition of its regular markets newsletter, “The Crypto Circular,” trading firm QCP Capital delivered a grim warning to those who believe that crypto winter is over.Research warns of “final Wave 5 sell-off”Bitcoin has surprised by retaining new support levels abruptly reclaimed in its week-long bull run, so far topping out at $21,650.Despite widespread suspicion over the “choreographed” move, BTC/USD has clawed back key trend lines and psychological price points.For QCP, there is still plenty of fuel to send the pair higher, but that still does not mean that the bear market overall is done and dusted.Updating its long-term Elliott Wave price analysis, it argued that the current upside constitutes a Wave 4 for Bitcoin — essentially a bear market relief move.“Make no mistake, what we are seeing now in risk markets are characteristic of Wave 4s,” it wrote. “We are sticking with our view that this bounce since November 2022 lows, is just a Wave 4 correction and we have a final Wave 5 sell-off to go.” Such a final capitulation would be no joke. Wave 5, a previous chart from December 2022, showed that both Bitcoin and Ether (ETH) could potentially drop below their 2022 floor.ETH/USD annotated chart (screenshot). Source: QCP Capital“The extension we are currently seeing so far in 2023 falls within the parameters of the Wave 4, even if it has broken some near-term technical levels to the topside, thereby increasing bullish momentum,” the newsletter continued.Elliott Wave theory states that the 20%, 38.2% and 50% Fibonacci retracement levels are of particular importance in Wave 4. Since Bitcoin has already corrected almost 20% from the recent macro lows, two remaining price targets are now in play: $27,100 and $31,850.“Technically until these levels are broken, Wave 4 is still in play and a final Wave 5 for these markets that break the lows should not be ruled out,” QCP said. “Without a doubt, the pain trade is lower right now.”WEF accompanies shaky BTC price actionAs Cointelegraph reported, Bitcoin has swapped its “up only” trading behavior for some much-needed consolidation in recent days.Related: Bitcoin sees new 4-month high as US PPI, retail data posts ‘big misses’This was helped by panic centered on the United States’ takedown of crypto exchange Bitzlato, coming amid fresh regulatory concerns over Bitcoin from participants at the World Economic Forum, now underway in Davos, Switzerland.BTC/USD traded at around $20,800 at the time of writing on Jan. 19, data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView showed.BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp). Source: TradingViewThe views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the authors’ alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.