Bitcoin (BTC) Surges Nearly 6% in 12 Hours to Move Past $6,700

Avi Rosten

The price of bitcoin (BTC) has surged nearly 6% in under 12 hours - climbing to over $6,700 - as cryptocurrency markets across the board have shown signs of recovery.

minute_CryptoCompare_Index_BTC_USD_289_51537521048448.pngSource: CryptoCompare

Unclear What’s Behind Surge

The biggest BTC news for the last few weeks came last night as the US SEC announced it was once again postponing its decision on the highly-anticipated VanEck-SolidX Bitcoin ETF until December 29th.

This news however is likely unrelated to the recent surge. The last time the SEC made a similar postponement announcement on August 8th – bitcoin dropped over 7% in price - although it is possible that investors expecting an outright “no” were somewhat encouraged.

Changpeng Zhao: Stablecoins and $6k Support Level Are Positive Signs

While such price movements are most probably attributable to short-term trading activity, taking a broader view on the state of the market yesterday – Binance CEO Chanpeng Zhao offered some reflections on the year as a whole while talking to CryptoGlobe at Consensus Singapore.

We asked him about the proliferation of stablecoins - such as Gemini’s recently launched GUSD – a development Zhao believes is very positive:

Stablecoins are huge, I think people don't understand the impact of a regulated stablecoin... If people understood what the impacts are bitcoin price would be going up now because of all the stablecoins. They are a very good channel for fiat money to come in and spread around the crypto space. I think it’s a very, very positive thing

Moreover, Zhao was keen to look at the general support level for BTC this year:

If you look at the chart, we have seen a very strong support level at $6,000 in 2018, whereas in 2014 it was $200. I never trade myself, I buy and hold. Any minute the bull market will return, historically October to December are the good months... But I don't make predictions we just react to markets

 

day_CryptoCompare_Index_BTC_USD_366_11537524721284.pngSource: CryptoCompare

Bitcoin Proponents Debate a Potential Hard Fork for Inflation

  • Bitcoin Advisory founder Pierre Rochard is asking bitcoin community to consider the implementation of inflation.
  • Rochard argues that transaction fees alone may not be enough to sustain miners in the future. 

Pierre Rochard, founder of consulting firm Bitcoin Advisory, has addresed a debate in the bitcoin community over whether transaction fees will be high enough to support the network’s continued use. 

Bitcoin Inflation Debate

According to Rochard, who is also a self-proclaimed proponent of BTC’s scaling solution lightning network, the community must question whether transaction fees alone will be enough incentive for miners in the future. As outlined in the original white paper, bitcoin’s total supply is limited to 21 million coins. 

While the final BTC is not expected to be minted until after the year 2140, the block reward will continue to decline over the coming century. Miners, who facilitate transactions and secure bitcoin’s network, will have to rely more upon transaction fees as a source of income, as BTC rewards continue to fall.

Some are now arguing that bitcoin may need to introduce perpetual inflation to remedy the situation, which would mean altering the original 21 million BTC total supply.

Rochard said, 

There’s an open question of will transaction fees be high enough – or in the aggregate total – enough to provide transaction finality...will bitcoin have to hard fork in inflation?

The Bitcoin Advisory founder asked the community to consider the state of altcoins, many of which operate on an inflationary protocol. Rochard acknowledged that confirmation bias may be clouding judgment in regard to bitcoin’s managed development and that the potential for inflation should at least be considered, 

There’s confirmation bias. We’re all very bullish on bitcoin, I certainly am, and so we want to pick out arguments and facts that support our position rather than trying to see all sides of a debate and have a more balanced view. Or at least have some level of uncertainty and self awareness in how much support we actually have for our arguments.

Future of BTC

Rochard pointed to an article written in 2015 by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Ryan Selkis, under the name TwoBitIdiot, arguing that bitcoin needed inflation despite the controversy of the idea. He also pointed to the increase in block size from 1MB, which at the time was considered blasphemous to bitcoin’s protocol, as analogous to the idea of introducing inflation. 

Rochard concluded that the bitcoin community has “a good 10 to 20 years to argue about it,” before inflation becomes a pressing issue. 

 

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com