Bitcoin will double in value by the end of the year despite its recent price stagnation, according to several cryptocurrency experts. The last six months has seen bitcoin’s price fall from more than $19,000 in December, to today’s value of below $7,700. The falling price has been attributed to uncertain regulation, as well as the seizure of bitcoins in different legal cases, such as MtGox, which were then sold on exchanges.
While the cryptocurrency markets continue to settle, the short-term forecast is expected to remain relatively stagnant. “I believe bitcoin’s price will continue to fluctuate between $6,500 and $8,500 in the coming weeks,” David Hanson, a blockchain expert and CEO of the gaming platform Ultra, told The Independent.
“In the medium-to-long term, bitcoin’s value should go up, as big institutions enter the crypto space in a bid to gain first-mover advantage, further legitimising the market.” This view that major institutions will provide a boost to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is shared by other figures in the space, who believe bitcoin will finally break back above $10,000 in the coming months.
“As the regulatory landscape clears up we can expect far more investors, including big ticket institutions, to make their first cryptocurrency investments,” Iqbal Gandham, the UK managing director of the investment platform eToro, told The Independent. “For the first few months of this year, the crypto industry has been jogging along at a relatively slow pace, waiting for the opportunity to stretch into a sprint. This may just be that moment.”
Bitcoin price predictions were very positive at the beginning of the year, buoyed by the price explosion at the end of 2017. Celebrated investor Tim Draper said bitcoin could hit $250,000 by 2022, while self-described “bitcoin evangelist” Alistair Milne said he believed bitcoin would reach between $35,000 and $60,000 by the end of next year. In January, a panel of cryptocurrency experts compiled by price comparison site Finder forecast that bitcoin would hit $33,000 by the end of this year. A new prediction released this week revised that figure to less than half that initial outlook at just $14,638.
Despite being more modest, if it is realised it would still represent almost a 100 per cent gain on bitcoin’s current price. Of all the other major cryptocurrencies, The Cryptocurrency Predictions Survey placed EOS as the digital currency with the most potential, with price gains of more than 200 per cent forecast by the end of the year. This positive outlook is one shared by blockchain expert David Hanson, who said EOS could attract the most interest from investors in the second half of 2018.
Mr Hanson said: “Looking at cryptocurrencies other than bitcoin, EOS is gaining a lot of attention lately as it’s unique and the scale at which it handles its ecosystem has never been seen before, so it would be worth keeping an eye on.”