Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Bitcoin Halving 2020: Boom or Bust?

The world of Bitcoin is ever evolving and dynamic, constantly creating ripples in cryptocurrency news. Ever since its inception in 2009, by a person or group of persons, going by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, it has been under intense scrutiny and speculation. As a pioneer for cryptocurrency, blockchain and open-source software, the Bitcoin value has been watched like a hawk, with the smallest changes making headlines. The recent few years have garnered unprecedented attention towards Bitcoin news, as the world started to awaken to the real potential of the cryptocurrency market.

Even so, apart from a few expert traders and those who closely follow Bitcoin news, not many people still really understand the complexities of

The algorithm and code that Bitcoin is built upon ensures that there are a finite number of coins in existence, which cannot, in any way be altered or increased. New Bitcoins cannot be generated or pumped into the market, no matter how much the demand increases. Thus supply can rarely match demand, and in the long run, once all the Bitcoins have been mined, will remain static, even as demand soars.  This has a momentous effect on Bitcoin value, and is responsible for wild fluctuations in price sometimes. However, Bitcoins can also be lost occasionally due to errors, such as sending them to an invalid address, which further decreases the number of coins in circulation.

This kind of algorithm is hailed as a genius move by Nakamoto by market analysts as it allows Bitcoin trends to imitate those of any other finite, easily trade-able commodity or metal, such as gold, for which demand will eventually exceed supply. In the cryptocurrency. This is especially true when it comes to Bitcoin’s price fluctuations and the demand and supply mechanics at work behind the scenes. this way, Bitcoin is also independent of the machinations of reserve and central banks which can print new currency and increase market circulation at will.

One of the greatest factors influencing this price is the Bitcoin halving. Even though this is the third halving in the history of Bitcoin, since the genesis block (block 0) was mined in 2009, this remains an astonishingly little-known event.

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Bitcoins are released into the market, whenever a Bitcoin miner discovers a new block of coins and through solving and validating the transactions on the block, unlocks new Bitcoins. These new blocks can then be added to the blockchain network, thus continuing the chain. It is estimated that a new block is unlocked every 10 minutes, approximately 6 per hour. This rate is slightly adjusted every two weeks to maintain a more or less stable supply of coins.

Originally, the reward for mining every new block was 50 Bitcoins. However, the fundamental algorithm dictates that the number of Bitcoins released per block needs to be reduced by half over time. This also helps to moderate the influx of coins into the market, preventing steep price crashes, due to excess supply in a short time. The algorithm is programmed in a way that every 210000 blocks, the reward per block decreases by half. According to this rate, by 2140, all the Bitcoins in existence will be mined, and the 21 million limit will have been reached.

The 2020 halving will reduce the reward to 6.25 coins per block. This may lead to some developers no longer finding it worthwhile to expend the enormous amount of time, money and resources needed to mine new blocks. As such, supply may slow down for a while, until the market readjusts itself, which will also lead to huge Bitcoin price fluctuations in the short run.

Since it takes approximately 4 years to mine 210000 blocks, the Bitcoin halving occurs every four years. The first halving was on 28th November 2012, and the second on 9th July 2016. The next one will be in May 2020, and it is expected to be humongous with far reaching consequences for the Bitcoin price. During the first two Bitcoin halvings, the cryptocurrency was not as popular, and had not yet gained the momentum it exudes today. Due to this, the halvings, although iconic, did not get the attention they deserved.

However, the Bitcoin world is waiting with bated breath for the 2020 halving, which is guaranteed to be an event which will rock the cryptocurrency exchange, and cause wild oscillations in Bitcoin value.

Previous trends have shown that Bitcoin prices rise from a month or so before the halving, due to increased news coverage, and speculations in the exchange market. After the halving, as well, prices continue to rise almost till a year later, due to the constrain of new coins per block in the market.

Around the 2020 halving, Bitcoin prices are predicted to rise faster and higher than ever before, with evangelist John McAfee, predicting a peak of $1 million by the end of 2020.

In reality though, there are several more factors at play, which affect the price surges. Trade analysts agree that demand during this period plays an absolutely crucial role too. Only when demand remains consistently high both before and after a halving will the Bitcoin price soar.

One of the major concerns for investors is how to trade Bitcoins around the halving period. While one can always buy coins straight through an exchange, the easier way might be to adopt derivatives such as Contracts For Differences (CFD). CFDs allow traders to speculate on the Bitcoin price movement, without assuming ownership of the underlying coins. This insulates traders against heavy losses.

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Indian Bitcoin news has also seen a surge in followers, as we draw closer to the halving period, which can only mean good things for the future of Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market in general.

Monesh Kumar
Monesh Kumar
Monesh Kumar is a cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiast. He trades cryptocurrencies and holds some but he prefers holding Bitcoin, Ethereum & Cardano.

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