Dispatch #189: Bitcoin Enters New Epoch with Lower Inflation than Gold's

4 min read

In this patch of your weekly Dispatch:

  • What’s Ahead for BTC ☀️
  • A Stable(coin) Growth 🌱
  • The Swiss Way in Adoption 🇨🇭

The Big Idea

The First Week in a New Epoch

You wouldn’t know it by looking at the price, but Bitcoin entered a new Epoch, its fifth after the block rewards halved late last week – miners will now get 3.125 BTC for every block they mine. Our podcast, the Social Block, dedicated an entire episode to the topic starring Joe Nakamoto.

And with the new Bitcoin Epoch in its first week, do we have any signs if it is to become a new Era of adoption? For a start, Bitcoin has now outperformed Tesla over the past 5 years.

  • The Fundamentals: Glassnode points out that the fourth halving signifies a noteworthy moment in the Bitcoin versus Gold comparison, as Bitcoin's steady-state issuance rate aka inflation (0.83%) falls below that of Gold (2.3%) for the first time in history.
  • The Institutions: Hong Kong approved the first batch of crypto-related spot ETFs, setting a precedent for the city and potentially positioning it as Asia's leading digital asset hub. On the other side of the globe, the Canadian financial sector experienced significant crypto adoption in 2023, with a 26% rise in institutional investors integrating crypto into portfolios. Although ETFs in the US slowed down in inflows recently, BlackRock’s spot Bitcoin ETF registered 70 days of positive capital inflows.
  • The Value: Despite recent negatives such as geopolitical tensions and a slowdown in cash entering ETFs, Standard Chartered predicts that Bitcoin will soar to $150,000 in 2024. For the nearer term, Cointelegraph looked at price dynamics above $60,000, where Nexo experts shared thoughts.

If you’re wondering what all the fuss around Bitcoin’s halving is, it’s understandable – it’s a programmed event that completes in a flash. Others see it more significant in the long-term, buying collectibles already – an “epic sat” from Bitcoin's fourth halving block has been auctioned off and bought for $2.1M. Could the halving serve as a mere reminder of what Bitcoin brings in this era of finance?

The Latest In…

The Stable Adoption of Stablecoins

Stablecoins signal the growth in cryptocurrency adoption vividly. And while we all enjoy dreaming about billion-dollar inflows, it’s all about the individuals embracing them – here are the latest stats:

  • The number of addresses holding stablecoins has surged by 15% this year, reaching a record high of 93.6M, driven by increased demand for dollar-pegged cryptocurrencies.
  • Tether (USDT) leads with a market cap of $114.07B, comprising over 80% of stablecoin addresses, followed by USDC and BUSD. It’s Ethereum and Solana that dominate transfer volumes.

The Latest In…

(Un)reasonable Token Moves?

The past week saw some spirited moves in the charts from a few notable tokens, but it’s always the reasons that matter:

  • WIF, the Solana-based meme coin, surged nearly 8.5% mid-week, showing bullish momentum despite no significant news driving the movement.
  • BONK, another Solana meme coin, witnessed a 13.5% increase following approval for a significant token burn proposal.
  • The Shiba Inu SHIB token has received a $12M investment from venture firms Animoca Brands and Polygon Ventures for a stake in its upcoming “layer three” blockchain.
  • Hedera's HBAR token surged by 113% following news of BlackRock's fund tokenization, but the price dropped by 38% after BlackRock clarified its non-involvement.

The Latest In…

The Swiss Way to Adoption

A group of Bitcoin advocates in Switzerland is pushing for the Swiss National Bank (SNB) to include Bitcoin in its reserves through a referendum, requiring over 100,000 signatures. Led by Yves Bennaïm of 2B4CH, the campaign aims to “safeguard Switzerland's sovereignty” by amending the constitution. Maxi-approved.

Luzius Meisser from Bitcoin Suisse supports the initiative, citing benefits like independence from the European Central Bank. Despite previous challenges and SNB's reluctance, advocates believe adding Bitcoin to reserves could have made Switzerland billions richer and warn of potential disadvantages if delayed.

The Week’s Most Interesting Data Story

The Fidelity in Bitcoin Adoption

Fidelity Digital Assets highlighted a fascinating development: the count of Bitcoin wallets holding $1,000 or more of BTC has doubled to 10.6M, signifying a notable surge in adoption. It’s not only small wallets – significant Bitcoin “whales” are displaying heightened demand for BTC.

Hot Topics

What the Community Is Discussing

Food (for thought) delivery from Ethereum’s creator.

Long read: it’s never too soon in crypto…

Cheers to fierce competition!

What to Watch for Next Week:

  • A Regulatory round-up
  • Bitcoin’s L2 aspirations
  • The Economy – where is 2024 headed?

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