Bitcoin (BTC) is the Godzilla of cryptocurrencies. It was the first, and it is the largest. When bitcoin crashed a few years ago, 82% of owners held. That is a fierce type of brand loyalty.
Bitcoin's unique features include decentralization, limited supply, and a history of huge gains. If you had bought $1 worth of bitcoin in 2010, it would have been worth $90,000 by the end of the decade.
The Great Halving
Among the significant events that impact bitcoin's ecosystem, one that stands out is the bitcoin halving. This article aims to demystify the concept of bitcoin halving and explain its significance within the cryptocurrency market.
Bitcoin halving refers to the predetermined event in the bitcoin protocol in which the rewards given to miners for validating transactions are reduced by half. The halving occurs approximately every four years, specifically after every 210,000 blocks are added to the blockchain. This event is hard-coded into the bitcoin protocol and plays a crucial role in regulating the supply of new bitcoins in circulation.
The Purpose of Bitcoin Halving
Bitcoin halving serves two primary purposes. First, it controls the issuance of new bitcoin, thereby creating scarcity. By reducing the number of new bitcoin entering the market, halving helps maintain a finite supply, ultimately aiming to make bitcoin more valuable over time. This scarcity aspect aligns with the store of value narrative surrounding bitcoin.
Secondly, bitcoin halving helps ensure a gradual and controlled distribution of new bitcoins over time. By periodically reducing block rewards, the protocol incentivizes miners to continue their work while preventing sudden inflationary spikes. This controlled issuance mechanism promotes a stable ecosystem for bitcoin and prevents supply shocks.
The next halving date is expected to happen in May 2024. Our analysts have traveled the world over, dedicated to finding the best and most profitable investments in the global energy markets. All you have to do to join our Energy and Capital investment community is sign up for the daily newsletter below.
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Effects of Bitcoin Halving
- Scarcity and increased value: With each halving event, the rate at which new bitcoins are introduced into circulation decreases, leading to a more limited supply.
- Mining economics: As the block rewards are halved, bitcoin mining becomes relatively less lucrative in theory. But so far the jump in BTC price more than makes up for mining losses.
- Market speculation: Bitcoin halving events often attract significant attention from investors and traders. Speculation about the potential impact on price and market dynamics can drive increased volatility and trading volumes in the lead-up to and aftermath of halving events.
- Long-term impact: Bitcoin halving is designed to continue until the maximum supply of 21 million bitcoins is reached, which is estimated to occur around the year 2140. As halvings occur, the issuance of new bitcoins slows down, making it progressively more challenging to mine.
There have been three bitcoin halvings in history. Here is what happened to the price each time:
- First halving (November 28, 2012): This cut the reward from 50 to 25 bitcoins. The price of Bitcoin increased from approximately $12 in November 2012 to over $1,000 by the end of 2013, an increase of over 8,000%.
- Second halving (July 9, 2016): This halving reduced the reward from 25 to 12.5 bitcoins. The price increased from about $650 in July 2016 to nearly $20,000 by December 2017, an increase of over 2,900%.
- Third halving (May 11, 2020): This event reduced the reward from 12.5 to 6.25 bitcoins. From the halving day in May 2020 when bitcoin was around $8,600, the price skyrocketed to an all-time high of just below $65,000 in April 2021, a gain of approximately 650%.
It's no wonder that large firms like BlackRock are trying to get a bitcoin ETF past the SEC regulators. Wall Street wants in on the action. Buy some bitcoin with the idea to sell on halving day when all the hype is priced in.
All the best,