Bitcoin hit a record $9,000 price in November 2017 after setting a series of record highs and is now near the $20,000 mark. You can find as many articles expecting the bubble to burst as saying it will pass $20,000. How far can we expect Bitcoin to go in 2018? And what are the long-term prospects for cryptocurrencies in general? We’ll discuss the trends bolster Bitcoin pricing now and in the future.
One factor affecting Bitcoin prices in the future is the legitimization of it. For example, the SEC was, at the time of writing, considering approval of a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund. People can buy ETFs for energy and medical companies with their retirement accounts since the wholesale rollout of the 401K, and this caused stock prices to soar.
When Bitcoin can be purchased by the same population, demand for it – and Bitcoin prices overall – will grow. Its prices probably did hit record prices in late 2017 because of the launch of Bitcoin futures on the CBOE on December 10, 2017. Ronnie Moas of Standpoint Research said that the approval of an ETF for Bitcoin could cause it to hit $20,000 or even $100,000.
One interesting factor impacting the Bitcoin price is newly perceived value as a store of value. It has sparked interest for years as the future of currency and attracted attention because of its novelty. The sustained strong prices of Bitcoin, its expanding adoption as a payment method and independence from national currencies have caused Bitcoin to be seen as an alternative to stocking up on gold to protect one’s wealth against an economic collapse.
Central Banks Joining In
Other nations are setting up their own cryptocurrencies as well. The Swedish central bank, for example, is considering a central bank digital currency. Ecuador issued one back in 2015. Russia has been cracking down on cryptocurrency miners, such as requiring them to register with the government, while announcing that it would release its own state-controlled cryptocurrency, the CryptoRuble. Estonia already has Estcoin in the works, and the country was the first to store its data on Blockchain. China is planning to issue a prototype cryptocurrency.
Don’t expect these government controlled cryptocurrencies to generate much interest from cryptocurrency users since many of them are deliberately seeking currencies outside of state control. However, the rollout of state-issued cryptocurrencies will demonstrate the reliability and acceptability of cryptocurrencies in general, and they will likely increase interest and demand for independent cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
For those who don’t want to have to rely on government approved cryptocurrencies, they’ll start pouring money into Bitcoin and other established cryptocurrencies before it becomes illegal to buy them. And that will boost Bitcoin’s price.
The legitimization of Bitcoin as a tradeable commodity will result in an influx of buyers through the stock market and expanding interest in Bitcoin by survivalists and people hoping to avoid national currency devaluation is increasing demand for Bitcoin. Opinions are divided on where Bitcoin is headed in 2018, but the cryptocurrency certainly seems like it’s picking up steam.