Cryptocurrency has been one of the biggest sensations of 2017. Everyone ran behind the virtual currency with a misconception of get rich quick scheme. However, the 2018 started on a low note for cryptocurrency. By mid-December, the world’s most popular cryptocurrency bitcoin reached its record high, crossing $20,000 mark. Along with bitcoin, other cryptocurrencies such as ripple grew beyond imagination. Experts have predicted values of various cryptocurrencies would skyrocket by the end of 2018. However, the beginning of 2018 told another story as the virtual currency experienced a huge plunge in its value. The high volatile nature of cryptocurrency market conveyed that investors need to be wise while investing and a bad day could result in a huge loss. Every major and popular cryptocurrency experienced a major falloff in prices. But after hitting the lowest point, they have been showing signs of stability.
Experts have predicted that the cryptocurrency industry would hit $1 billion mark in terms of value this year. Though there has been a history of wiping off $550 billion in a day, they assert that the market would hit a trillion mark. The major falloff in value may be the result of regulations proposed by some major countries for cryptocurrency, but experts believe otherwise. Thomas Glucksmann, head of business development of APAC at cryptocurrency exchange Gatecoin, told CNBC, “Increasing regulatory recognition of cryptocurrency exchanges, the entrance of institutional capital and major technology developments will contribute to the market’s rebound and push cryptocurrency prices to all new highs this year.”
Mr. Glucksmann added that the bitcoin will soar high and reach $50,000 by the end of the year. He cited the technological advancements as the major reason behind exponential increase in value. The Lightening Network, which will increase speed of bitcoin transactions per second, will be influential in raising the value significantly. He also predicted that there would release of cryptocurrency backed instrument listed on one of the major exchanges. There are many candidates in line and it is only the matter of time when there will be a cryptocurrency backed exchange-traded fund (ETF). Major exchanges in the U.S. such as CME and CBOE launched bitcoin futures trading in 2017. Moreover, Nasdaq has been investigating the cryptocurrency futures.
There has been a significant rise in cryptocurrency prices in 2017. The value of bitcoin rose by nearly 1,300 percent, while prices of Ethereum and ripple increased by nearly 8,000 and 32,000 percent, respectively. Though these figures showed a very high surge in prices, some of the experts expressed that this year would be even bigger than the last.
Jamie Burke, CEO at Outlier Ventures, a venture capital firm that focuses on blockchain investments, told CNBC, “We believe after February the market will likely go on a bull run comparative if not greater than last year potentially reaching the trillion-dollar mark before a proper crypto winter sets in where the market becomes more focused on proper market fundamentals.”
Some experts believe that cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ripple will have no fundamental value. But platforms such as Ethereum will be valuable as they are used to develop blockchain applications. Companies such as NEO and IOTA have been striving to create their own blockchain platforms on which developers can develop new applications. The blockchain platforms have an ability to drive value of cryptocurrencies to the roof.