Bitcoin (BTC) and most of the virtual currencies have been in a bear market since December 2017. The popular digital currency reached $20,000 at that time and since that moment it cannot recover its price. Indeed, it went down to $3,250 a few months ago.
Now, cryptocurrency experts and analysts are analyzing when digital currencies are going to start growing once again and end with this year-long bear market. There are different things that might have a deep influence on Bitcoin’s price this year.
The first thing to talk about is the Lightning Network (LN), the scaling solution proposed for Bitcoin. This second layer solution has been growing throughout 2018, even during the current bear market. As time passes, the capacity of the network will increase and the number of users on it will be increasing as well.
According to Kyle Samani from Multicoin Capital, as the network size and capacity grow, users will be running into usability issues due to uneven capacity, among other things. This is why the community must pay close attention to this challenge.
According to Jared Tate, the founder of DigiByte, he does not see any major protocol-level updates coming to Bitcoin anytime soon. That means that mining algorithm changes or similar issues will not be debated this year.
Tate believes that we are currently at the bottom of the bear market and that there are several big players getting involved in Bitcoin. This means that there are millions of dollars ready to purchase the digital asset but too little BTC available for large purchases without pushing the price up in 2019.
Another expert that has provided insight about Bitcoin and the current year is Preston Byrne. He said that this year looks very bearish for Bitcoin. The Lightning Network does not seem ready to be implemented in the market yet. Additionally, there are going to be several regulations in the market that will likely harm the most popular virtual currency in the market.
However, Bitcoin remains a censorship-proof payment method to circumvent governments and corporate companies. Individuals in Venezuela and other countries such as Zimbabwe are going to be benefited by Bitcoin.
According to Alon Raijc, Managing Director at Finofin, after a very bearish 2018, digital currencies will be put into test in 2019, not only Bitcoin. According to him, Bitcoin does not crash even further because there are investors and speculators that are artificially keeping the price of Bitcoin up. On the matter, he commented:
“I believe that at a certain point in time, with lack of positive headlines, these investors and speculators will lose their patience and start mitigating their losses by dumping it. Then we’ll see a real landslide towards Bitcoin’s realistic price for what it is – a noble concept that has yet to prove its role in the modern economy.”
Meanwhile, Kevin Hobbs, the CEO of the Vanbex Group, said that Bitcoin will operate stably during 2019. Investors and individuals see Bitcoin as a store of value, and this is something that will help Bitcoin retain is price during this year.
The CEO and co-founder of Blockchain Assembly, Peter Smyrniotis, said that Bitcoin sis till tiny when compared to the market capitalization of different bluechip stocks. At the moment, Bitcoin is not widely distributed and there is still a lot of capital concentration among several wallets.
Due to this situation, Smyrniotis believes that the price of Bitcoin is being manipulated, or at least it could be manipulated. That means that it is difficult to predict what will happen in the future with this digital asset. For the next 18 months, he believes that Bitcoin will experience another rapid price increase.
Governments and regulatory agencies are better prepared than in the past to handle another frenzy in that event.
Virgilio Lizardo, the Vice President of International Affairs at Gate Technology, is bullish about Bitcoin. He said that he believes that Bitcoin will continue to grow at a rapid pace all over the world.
Mr. Lizardo said about it:
“The train has left the station – it’s whether you get on or get left behind at this point. The price action is a surface level indicator of what is happening with the development of this revolutionary technology.”
Finally, the cryptoanalyst Brian Kelly said that the market will be focusing on currencies such as Bitcoin and Litecoin (LTC) because there are some geopolitical tensions in the world.
There are some macro players that could start to use Bitcoin, something that will play an important role in the current market.