A tumultuous few weeks for bitcoin may be coming to an end after cryptocurrency markets experienced an exceptionally quiet day of trading.
Over the last 24 hours, the price of bitcoin shifted by less than 1 per cent, as stabilising forces also saw ethereum and bitcoin cash move by a similarly fine margin.
Bitcoin settled at around the $9,600 – well below the $10,000 milestone that one cryptocurrency analyst recently described as the “new normal bottom” – following a flash crash that saw $10 billion wiped from its overall value in the space of just 30 minutes.
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Despite this, many experts remained hopeful that bitcoin remains on an upward trajectory and could still go on to reach record highs before the end of the year.
One investor noted on Twitter that the recent price crash did not take bitcoin off its course of setting higher monthly lows since February 2019.
The price of bitcoin has trebled in price over the last seven months, though still remains a long way off its record high of close to $20,000, which it reached in December 2017.
Simon Peters, an analyst at online trading platform eToro, explained that the recent dip may simply be as a result of a batch of bitcoin futures contracts that were set to expire.
“Chicago Mercantile Exchange Bitcoin futures contracts are set to expire tomorrow, which historically has prompted trading activity within the cash market,” he told The Independent.
“It’s possible that investors are selling off now to insulate themselves from greater losses in the coming days. Furthermore, this downward momentum has been exacerbated by low trading volumes over the last week, which has meant that a relatively small number of big trades have been able to move the needle sharply.”
Several prominent figures within the cryptocurrency community have stood by their previous positive predictions, with cyber security pioneer John McAfee continuing to stand by his bold bet that bitcoin will hit $500,000 in 2020.
Such a claim seems modest when compared to other historic predictions. Computer scientist Hal Finney, who some believe may be the pseudonymous creator of bitcoin Satoshi Nakamoto, was perhaps the most bullish about bitcoin’s price potential.
One week after the first ever genesis block of bitcoin was created in January 2009, Finney published his thoughts on what the value of bitcoin would be if it went on to replace the US dollar as the main global currency.
“Imagine that bitcoin is successful and becomes the dominant payment system in use throughout the world,” he wrote.
“Then the total value of the currency should be equal to the total value of all the wealth in the world. Current estimates of total worldwide household wealth that I have found range from $100 trillion to $300 trillion. With 20 million [bitcoin], that gives each coin a value of about $10 million.”
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