Last year wasn’t the best for crypto, but now we’re starting another with better perspectives. BitcoinBitcoin is the first decentralized digital currency. It was created in 2009, by an anonymous founder or group of founders... More (BTCAn abbreviation for Bitcoin.) just recovered a price of $17K per coin. That’s after an increase of 3% since the beginning of 2023. Likewise, the total cryptocurrencyA digital currency running on a blockchain and built with cryptography. Contrary to central-bank issued currency, cryptocurrency issuance rules are... More market cap has increased by 3.5% in the same period [CMC]. Some good and bad updates may be ahead.
The December edition of the ISM Report on Business was published a few days ago, likely giving a boost to crypto. This is an important indicator of the state of the US economy. By now, one of their charts, the ISM Non-Manufacturing Index, fell to 49.6 from 56.5 before. This could imply a budding economic contraction.
In the same vein, according to the December report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), at least 223,000 jobs were added to the market, and the unemployment rate was only 3.5%. Both stats were out of previous forecasts, positively. The wage growth was also softer than anticipated, which can indicate a slowdown in inflation.
The investment titan BlackRock may also have to do with the recent Bitcoin increase to $17K. They already adopted the first cryptocurrency last year, but now they’re adding it to their flagship product. So, Bitcoin is now an eligible investment for their Global Allocation Fund, worth over $15 billion.
As the filing explains, “the Fund may invest in cash-settled bitcoin futures that are traded on commodity exchanges registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.” Let’s remember that BlackRock operates in 30 countries and serves around 100 institutional clients worldwide. This adoption means more Bitcoin exposure to corporate actors.
Bitcoin at $17K: will be up or down next time?
The Crypto Fear & Greed Index is telling us now that the market is still in “Extreme Fear”. Bitcoin has been less volatile lately, which could be a bad signal for the price. According to Glassnode, BTC’s one-month volatility reached an extreme low of 24.6%. Few occasions in the past saw that number or lower, and most of them preceded a fall in the price.
To the investment firm VanEck, Bitcoin can lose $17K and decrease to $10K in Q1 2023 “amid a wave of minerMiners secure some blockchain networks by ordering crypto transactions into blocks and verifying the blocks of other miners. For this... More bankruptcies”. We already saw how Core Scientific disconnected over 37,000 mining machines. But the first crypto would recover and reach $30,000 in the second half of 2023 —as they predict. Other predictions range from $5,000 to $250,000 for this year.
We can’t really know for sure, though. If global inflation decreases, it may be very positive for cryptocurrencies as well. By the end of this year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects global inflation to have fallen to 4.7% from 8.8% in 2022. In the meantime, the best bet is to trade safely.
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