In today’s bitcoin and cryptocurrency news, read that Bitcoin is a day away from breaking a nearly 10-year-old record, while Ethereum might reach a huge milestone by the end of the second quarter. On the bright side, Bitcoin has started the year 2023 strong. This past Saturday was the first time in over two months that the token has surpassed $21,000, and it is currently up 28% month-to-date. Finally, Dr. Wright, while explaining Bitcoin to an audience that may know nothing about it, referred to the blockchain as “a verifiable measurement and meter of what exists and where.”

Bitcoin Approaches a 10-year Record While Other Figures Improve

Original Source: Bitcoin inches closer to a 10-year record, as other stats turn bullish

Bitcoin is a day away from hitting a nearly 10-year-old record, while Ethereum might achieve a major milestone by Q2.

If the bullish price trend continues, Bitcoin BTC $21,231 might match its unprecedented 15-day victory streak.

In November 2013, Bitcoin experienced its longest period of positive price movement, lasting 15 days.

BTC is on day 14 of its winning streak, hitting four-month highs.

One more day of price appreciation will equal its 2013 streak. Bitcoin’s 16-day winning run will establish a new record.

Not the only bullish metric entering new territory.

Ethereum’s 100M non-zero addresses will shortly surpass

Given the current number of wallet addresses and the historical growth rate of the measure, Ethereum addresses holding at least some Ether ETH $1,578 will shortly reach 100 million.

The number of non-zero ETH addresses reached an all-time high of roughly 92.5 million on Jan. 16, according to crypto analytics firm Glassnode.

According to the statistics, Ethereum is 7.5 million non-zero addresses away from 100 million.

The amount has increased by 20 million every year since 2019. If that trend continues, there might be 100 million non-zero ETH wallets by the second quarter of 2023.

Half a million validators for ETH

Another Ethereum metric that has grown is the number of validators, which validate blockchain transactions.

BeaconScan data shows that on Jan. 12, ETH validators surpassed 500,000.

The Shanghai hard fork in March will allow validators to withdraw their staked ETH, which they used to validate the network.

America’s crypto payment leader

For crypto spenders, the US is the most welcoming.

According to the Jan. 14 Forex Suggest Crypto Acceptance Report, more over half of a list of 250 organizations taking crypto as payment were U.S.-based, making the country the leader in crypto-accepting corporations.

The U.S. finished first, followed by the UK and Canada.

E-commerce and travel were the most crypto-friendly industries.

Microsoft, with a market valuation of $1.8 trillion, accepted bitcoin.

Wrapped Bitcoin on Ethereum declines 35% from 2022’s top.

It wasn’t all good. Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), a tokenized and 1:1 backed form of BTC on Ethereum, has had its supply on the Ethereum network decline by 35% since May.

Glassnode tweeted on Jan. 17 that Ethereum’s all-time high of 285,000 WBTC in May 2022 preceded the price collapse of TerraLunaClassic (LUNC) and its algorithmic stablecoin TerraClassicUSD (USTC).

Over 2022, the blockchain has 183,500 tokenized Bitcoin and 101,550 less WBTC.

Why Bitcoin Has Increased by 28% This Month After a Turbulent 2022

Original Source: New Year, new rally: Why bitcoin is up 28% this month after a tumultuous 2022

Bitcoin’s price has risen 28% since January, starting 2023 on a high note.

Bitcoin reached $21,000 per coin for the first time since Nov. 7 on Saturday.

Bitcoin’s record high was $68,990 in November 2021. But it’s given market participants hope.

The month-to-date bounce followed a bleak 2022, which included the collapse of FTX and a severe market downturn due to central bank interventions.

Bitcoin’s New Year gain is attributed to several variables, including an enhanced likelihood of interest rate cuts and “whale” purchases.

New monetary policy in the new year?

Economic indicators imply a slowdown in U.S. economic growth as inflation cools. That’s given traders hope the Fed would reverse or slow its rate hikes.

In accordance with Dow Jones predictions, December’s consumer price index fell 0.1%.

“Bitcoin seems to have recoupled with macro data as investors shrug off the FTX collapse,” James Butterfill, head of research at digital asset management firm CoinShares, told CNBC via email.

The poor services PMI and declining employment and pay statistics are the most crucial macro indicators for investors. At a time when Bitcoin values are near all-time lows, this has increased confidence. This surge has been driven by the anticipation of looser monetary policy due to negative economic data and cheap valuations.”

Risky assets like equities and tech stocks plummeted in 2022 as the Fed raised borrowing rates seven times. The bank’s benchmark funds rate reached its highest level since 2007 in December at 4.25%-4.50%.

As investors see bitcoin as a hazardous asset, it has been caught up in the loan rate controversy.

Bitcoin supporters originally promoted it as a “hedge” against rising inflation. Bitcoin fell in almost 60% in 2022 as the U.S. and other major countries struggled with higher rates and living costs.

In a Jan. 13 letter, Japanese crypto exchange Bitbank’s crypto market analyst Yuya Hasegawa said this was “brewing a hope amongst market players that the Fed will further slow down on the pace of rate hikes.”

Interest rates are expected to stay high for now. Some market participants are optimistic that central banks would slow rate hikes or perhaps cut rates. Some experts think the Fed may lower rates this year.

Central bankers are also concerned about a recession.

According to study issued by the Davos organizer on Monday, two-thirds of senior economists questioned by the World Economic Forum expect a worldwide recession in 2023.

In the past three months, the U.S. dollar has dropped 9% versus a basket of trading partners’ currencies. Bitcoin trades mostly against USD, therefore a lower dollar is good for it.

Vijay Ayyar, vice president of corporate development and international at crypto exchange Luno, told CNBC, “We are seeing the dollar put in a top, inflation lowering, interest rate rises slowing down – all pointing to markets turning more risk-on over the next several months.”

Whales purchasing Bitcoin

According to Kaiko, “whales”—large buyers of digital coins—may be driving bitcoin’s recent run.

In a flurry of tweets Monday, the crypto analytics firm said that Binance deal sizes had increased from $700 on Jan. 8 to $1,100 today, reflecting whales’ newfound confidence in the market.

Investors with big bitcoin holdings called whales. Some are persons, such MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor and Silicon Valley financier Tim Draper. Market makers, which broker sales, are others.

Digital currency skeptics claim this allows a few individuals with massive token holdings to manipulate the market. According to fintech startup River Financial, the wealthiest 97 bitcoin wallet addresses account for 14.15% of the supply.

In December, Carol Alexander, a lecturer at the University of Sussex, told CNBC that bitcoin may see a “controlled bull market” in 2023, rising to $30,000 in the first quarter and $50,000 in the second. Her theory was that whales would prop up the market when trade volumes plummeted and market panic was strong.

Increased Bitcoin mining difficulty

Additional considerations are involved.

Bitcoin miners have been wiped out by price drops. The price drop and rising energy costs have hurt bitcoin miners, who employ power-intensive computers to validate transactions and manufacture new coins.

Ayyar says that’s beneficial for bitcoin historically.

These actors are the market’s greatest sellers because they hoard digital money. Miners selling bitcoin to pay off obligations removes most of the remaining selling pressure.

However, bitcoin’s network “difficulty” has been rising, requiring more computational power to release fresh tokens into circulation.

According to statistics, mining difficulty reached a record 37.6 trillion on Sunday, indicating that, on average, it would take 37.6 trillion hashes to discover a legitimate bitcoin block and add it to the blockchain.

In a note Monday, Marcus Sotiriou, market analyst at digital asset broker GlobalBlock, wrote, “Bitcoin mining difficulty is a measure of how tough it is to construct the next block of transactions.”

After a winter storm forced several miners to shut down, Bitcoin mining difficulty dropped 3.6%. However, miners appear to have come back online with new and more efficient machines.”

2024 ‘halfing’

Traders may celebrate the New Year with events farther down the crypto calendar. The bitcoin “halving” excites crypto investors, even if it’s a year away.

Some investors believe the halving, which halved bitcoin miners’ incentives, would boost bitcoin’s price.

“There are hints this might be the beginning of a new cycle with Bitcoin,” Ayyar told CNBC.

In March or May 2024, the next halving will occur.

Ayyar added, “At this time, we’re in an overbought area with Bitcoin and therefore may absolutely see a dip.” He noted that prices might fall if bitcoin closes below $18,000 in the next days.

Bitcoin is the Cheapest Ledger Network

Original Source: Bitcoin is a ledger network cheaper than anything today. Craig Wright

At the October Global Forum 2022/SShaping the Future conference in Muscat, Oman, Dr. Craig S. Wright remarked, “That’s my value proposition.” The Bitcoin SV (BSV) blockchain aspires to a billion transactions per second for less than one-thousandth of a U.S. cent. Dr. Wright told a group of people who didn’t know much about Bitcoin that the blockchain is “a proven measurement and meter of what exists and where it is.”

The Global Forum has been held every year for 30 years. It has been called “The Davos of ICT” and “The International Think-Tank on the Digital Future.” This year, “Technology, Sustainability, and Humanity,” the event’s first Middle East event, will bring together over 250 international experts, politicians, private and public firms and organizations, academia, and non-governmental organizations from over 30 countries.

Muscat, Oman, was named the third Arab Digital Capital. With its “Vision 2040” project, Oman wants to find new ways to improve the efficiency of industry.

Dr. Wright spoke on the opening panel with OPAL Oman Chief Executive Officer Abdul Rahman Al Yahyaei, H.E. Dr. Ali Al Shidhani from Oman’s government, Giles Babinet, Co-President of the National Digital Council, Digital Champion, France, and Jean-Yves Le Gall, former CNES President and French Space Agency President. He elaborated later in the meeting.

Daniel Van Lerberghe, who was in charge of the event, introduced Bitcoin’s creator and said, “Bitcoin is not an anarchist system.” He also said that Bitcoin worked within the law to create a network of digital ownership that fights both crime and corruption by keeping a transparent and permanent record of events at a lower cost than any data service.

He stated that Bitcoin relies on digital scarcity. Linking real-world and digital assets to technology creates a unique file. It is transferred to a new owner, not copied. This also allows multiple signatures to transfer a file, proven key deletion, and the certainty that only one copy exists.

He used his auditing skills to explain how Bitcoin is built on paper ledgers where information may be added but not erased. He dispelled the idea that “rolling back the blockchain” or (in a jab at BTC) performing these activities on a seven-transaction-per-second network was the solution to problems.

He noted that Bitcoin secures property rights, and owners need to know their products are still there and can be retrieved (if stolen or lost). “My answer isn’t all this anarchist stuff,” he continued, and such a system needs governments and courts to administer it.

Dr. Ali Al Shidhani, Oman’s Undersecretary for Communications and Information Technology (MTCIT), started the session with his country’s digital vision. He said Vision 2040 is an aspirational 20-year strategy to place Oman “on the map” of competing countries for economic diversification and human growth. Digitization and a “top-down, bottom-up” collaborative method with over 40,000 participants seek to boost efficiency and progress.

Oman needs tourism, logistics, and mining to diversify its economy away from natural resources. The UN put Oman in the top 50 for e-government, top 20 for cybersecurity, and top 48 for network preparedness.

“We’re betting on digital transformation to boost those industries’ efficiency,” he continued.

Oman is developing new investment incentives and free development zones to test new technologies, including transport and self-driving vehicles.

Summary of today’s bitcoin and cryptocurrency news

In summary, if prices continue to rise for just one more day, they will have broken their 2013 record. If Bitcoin keeps winning like it has for the past 15 days, it will set a new record.

Meanwhile, experts say that the New Year’s rally in bitcoin was caused by a combination of things, such as rising expectations of a rate cut and “whale” investors buying huge amounts of bitcoin.

Lastly, when moderator Daniel Van Lerberghe introduced Bitcoin’s creator, he told the audience that “Bitcoin is not an anarchist system” and that it worked within the law to create a network of digital ownership that fights both crime and corruption by keeping a clear and permanent record of events at a much lower cost than any data service.