On January 12, 2019, after perhaps a year and a half of development, the world saw the first Bitcoin transaction. The transaction, on block 170, took place between Satoshi – the legendary creator of Bitcoin – and Hal Finney, a developer and cryptographic activist.
A little more than 10 years have passed since that initial transaction. According to some estimates, the cryptocurrency universe has expanded to over $130 billion in market capitalization (market capitalization is simply the overall value of all cryptocurrencies in existence).
The universe includes Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, EOS, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Tether, Stellar, TRON, Binance Coin, and thousands of others. Bitcoin is the largest, accounting for approximately 52% of all cryptocurrency market cap as of February 28, 2019. The next largest, and far behind Bitcoin, is Ethereum at 11%, followed by XRP at 10% EOS at 3%, and Litecoin at 2%.
Cryptocurrencies appear to be here to stay, regardless of what governments and central banks try to do to get rid of them. The currencies have been through fraud, attempts at regulation, rumors of pending doom, and attempts by banks to eliminate them. And many of the cryptocurrencies still stand.
Of the many challenges cryptocurrencies have been through, perhaps the most significant threat was in 2013. On December 5, 2013, the People’s Bank of China announced that they would bar financial institutions from handling Bitcoin transactions. Initially the Bitcoin price dropped 20%, but what has happened since?
Here’s a look at the price of Bitcoin in 2013. The price drop following the People’s Bank of China announcement is circled. Interestingly, the price of Bitcoin initially dropped significantly, but then came back quickly. The comeback was within the week. It was as if the People’s Bank of China had no effect.
Price of Bitcoin, 2013-2019
What happened over the past six years since China’s announcement?
The picture is almost breathtaking. Bitcoin has been through ups and downs, some of which have been very volatile. But, through all the turmoil, the world’s most renown cryptocurrency has exploded in demand from the transactions side and the price has continued above $1,000 for many years now.Conclusion
Overall, Bitcoin, and cryptocurrencies in general, appear here to stay. Bitcoin and others have been through fraud, manipulation accusations, competition, regulation attempts, and prohibition attempts. So far, all have failed. The demand it there. The cause behind the demand is reasonable. The future appears bright for Bitcoin and the broader cryptocurrency universe.