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Bitcoin Crosses $24,000 In Another ATH As ~10% of Total Supply Feared Lost

Bitcoin has reached yet another all-time high as its price crossed $24,000 on Saturday December 19 to mark a new milestone in a week. Earlier, the previous record held by the last hours of November 2020, the first after 2017, was broken on Dec 16 as the top cryptocurrency topped $23,000.

It’s the closest the record breaking could be so far and with the price discovery setting in as well as no clue on what 2021 will bring, there are even more suggestions on what to expect.

More records to come

According to more than half of the panelists on a recent Finder’s Bitcoin Price Predictions report, the bull run is expected to last until at least the second half of 2021 which could see the price go even higher.

The panelists, which include Bitcoin developer, Jimmy Song, Jason Lau, COO of OKCoin, CEO of Coinmama, Sagi Bakshi and senior lecturer at the University of East London, Iwa Salami, predict the price of Bitcoin will more than double by the end of 2021, with an average forecast of $51,951.

“The halving caused the supply to decrease [e]ven if demand stayed the same, that would explain why the price went up,” Song said. “Demand has gone up because of the insane money printing, so the combination has led to a pretty nice price-rise. I expect the supply shock to continue in 2021.”

Other identified driving forces behind the rally include large-scale public investments from firms like MicroStrategy and Square (cited by 72% of panelists), Paypal’s announcement to allow customers hold Bitcoin (72%), large scale quantitative easing by central banks (66%) and a general sentiment shift and increased acceptance of the Bitcoin narrative (66%).

9.5% of Bitcoin supply may be lost

It comes amid suggestions that  about a tenth of Bitcoin supply may have been lost. According to Glassnode data, it shows that 1.78 million Bitcoins have never left their miner address thus leaving approximately 9.5% of the total circulating Bitcoin supply fixed up till this point.

The on-chain analytics firm notes that 98% of those coins were mined more than seven  years ago, and 94% more than 10 years ago. Most could be lost forever, it suggests.

With the recent surge, crypto analyst Willy Woo calculates that a dollar invested in Bitcoin at its first market price would be worth $29.8m today – hinting that 18,656 people had exposure to the cryptocurrency on 6 Oct 2009 when Bitcoin first had a price.

Woo also notes that Bitcoin is now swallowing capital as an emerging “fully digital” asset class since being the “first invention of an Internet-native scarcity” that can now make the Internet store value like gold whose supply he claims doubles every 40 years.

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