For months on the sidelines, Bitcoin (BTC) may soon find relief and rise to $63,000 in March 2024, when it is planned to cut the issuance of the cryptocurrency as programmed in its code, with the aim of reducing the rate of expansion of supply by 50% every four years.
At least that’s what Markus Thielen, head of research and strategy at crypto services provider Matrixport, which has $10 billion in assets under management, argues.
The positive forecast is based on the assumption that Bitcoin will repeat the gains seen in the period leading up to the last two such events, which took place in July 2016 and April 2020.
Called halving, the process consists of halving the reward for miners, also cutting the supply of new units of the asset on the market by 50% – hence the cryptocurrency is said to have deflationary characteristics.
In both 2016 and 2020, Bitcoin faced bullish movements 15 months before the halving, culminating in a price 39% higher than the level seen exactly two years earlier. As a result, if history repeats itself, the coin could rise, according to Thielen, to $63,160 by March 2024, trading 39% above the $45,538 price seen in March 2022.
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The next halving is scheduled for May 2024.
“Prices started to rise 15 months before the next halving (November 2022) and tend to finish 39% of where they traded 24 months earlier. This would mean that Bitcoin would trade around $63,160 (March 2022 to $45,538* (1+39%) = $63,160) by March 2024,” Thielen wrote in a note.
Caution with history
The history of no asset guarantees that it will repeat itself, especially in the case of Bitcoin’s short history. However, investors may seek refuge in the more favorable macro outlook in the coming months.
Federal Reserve officials recently suggested a slower pace of monetary tightening in the United States starting in December. Furthermore, there are signs that China is softening its stance towards cryptocurrencies, according to Thielen.
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“The timing of Hong Kong potentially legalizing retail cryptocurrency trading to become a cryptocurrency hub in the wake of the China Party Congress, which is held just twice a decade, signals that China is shifting its stance towards to crypto,” Thielen noted.
“Russia has also changed its stance on economic sanctions. President Putin and China are looking for an alternative to the dollar system. Along with Saudi Arabia, which wants to join the BRICS countries and is very interested in upgrading its economy to Web 3.0, a new multi-year crypto bull market could be starting,” Thielen added.
Waiting for the next halving
Bitcoin has gone through three halvings so far. Prices rose from $8,800 to $69,000 in 18 months after the third halving on May 12, 2020.
The fourth halving was initially slated to take place in May 2024. However, with the hash rate – or computing power dedicated to mining blocks – rising during the markets slump, the reward halving is expected to take place in March 2024.
After the event, the block reward paid to miners will drop from 6.25 BTC to 3.12 BTC, reducing the cryptocurrency’s inflation rate to 1.1%. Bitcoin miners solve complex algorithmic problems to mine blocks and verify transactions in exchange for rewards paid in BTC.
The cryptocurrency’s fixed monetary policy of halving the supply expansion every four years contrasts with the growing supply of fiat money. This has motivated many, including business intelligence firm MicroStrategy, to adopt Bitcoin as a reserve asset.
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