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BTC and LTC Halving ‘Shock’ May Be Mitigated by Merged Mining: Report

Block reward halving “shock” at Bitcoin and Litecoin could be mitigated by merged mining, according to Binance Research.

The effect of block reward halvings for both Bitcoin (BTC) and Litecoin (BTC) mining could be mitigated by merged mining, according to a report by a research arm of major crypto exchange Binance released on July 12.

Following Charlie Lee’s prediction that some miners may shut down Litecoin mining after the halving, which is expected to take place on Aug. 5, 2019, Binance Research analyzed the potential of so-called merged mining to retain incentives for crypto miners.

Merged mining is a practice of using the work done for one blockchain, or parent blockchain, on other smaller child blockchains by implementing Auxiliary Proof of Work (AuxPoW). To date, there are three major examples of merged mining, including Bitcoin blockchain-parented Namecoin (NMC), Litecoin-merged Dogecoin (DOGE), and Myriadcoin (XMY) which is merged with both LTC and BTC.

In the new report, Binance Research concluded that merged mining could “potentially provide and opportunity” to increase mining rewards in the light of future block reward halving scheduled for both Litecoin and Bitcoin. Alongside, other smaller chains could also potentially move to AuxPoW in order to support a higher level of network security while reducing the need for a separate mining set, the firm added.

At the same time, Binance Research warned about the potential shortcomings of merged mining from both a miner’s and a project team’s perspectives. Miners may not be incentivized to support child blockchains due to a significant level of operations costs as well as a potential decline in the given coin’s market price.

From the perspective of a project team working on a PoW crypto-asset, risks include dependency on the parent blockchain and new potential attack vectors.

In the report, Binance Research also considered Dogecoin, which has been operating for about six years to date, as the most successful example of merged mining. After Dogecoin adopted the merged mining model in August 2014, the coin’s mining hashrate increased by 1,500% while also showing correlation with Litecoin’s hash rate. According to the report, almost 90% of Dogecoin’s total hash rate derives from large Litecoin mining pools as of July 2019.

On July 5, Binance exchange listed Dogecoin on its crypto trading platform. On the same day, the exchange released its “2019 Q2 Crypto-Correlations Review,” stating that Dogecoin has become less correlated with other cryptos in Q2 2019, alongside with Bitcoin. However, the coin has continued to be significantly correlated with Litecoin, mostly due to the shared mining of two coins, the firm wrote.

On July 9, mining difficulty of bitcoin has reached a new all-time high by hitting a 9.06 trillion at an average hash rate of 64.85 quintillions per second (EH/s).

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Bitcoin Bulls Count on 2020 Halving to Give BTC Price Massive Push: Bloomberg

Bitcoin halving takes place every few years to prevent Bitcoin value from inflation, analysts and bulls point out that after each of those events Bitcoin price experienced a substantial rally

Halving or ‘halvening’ happens every few years – as soon as new 210,000 blocks are mined. When it takes place, the rewards of miners are cut down in half. As per the recent Bloomberg article, crypto bulls are already rubbing their hands in anticipation.

Bitcoin miners’ reward will diminish

The reason is that after the previous two
halvings Bitcoin quotes showed an extensive surge, bringing traders more than
healthy gains.

What happens at a halving is that the amount of coins that miners get for using their computation power to verify transactions gets cut by half.

The first halving occurred in 2012, another one was in 2016. After the first one Bitcoin price hit $1,000. The 2016 halving made Bitcoin price surge to an ATH of over $19,000.

Another mining award cut is expected in May 2020 and then an award for each block will total 6.25 BTC, instead of 12.5 BTC now.

Crypto community expects a major bull run

A recent Twitter poll shows that among 2,500 voters, 61% expect BTC price to demonstrate a major rally. Since the award will be cut down by half, fewer Bitcoins will be released in circulation, which will make the coin scarcer than it is now, thus the price should go up.

https://twitter.com/100trillionUSD

As said above, after the first halving in
autumn 2012 Bitcoin price spiked from $10 to $1,000 within a year. The next
halving saw Bitcoin surge to almost $20,000 before it collapsed in 2018.

Crypto experts agree to differ

Major Bitcoin bulls, writes Bloomberg, such as
Anthony ‘Pomp’ from Morgan Creek Digital, have been drawing attention to the
2020 halvening, emphasizing its importance.

Some crypto experts remain skeptical, though. Eric Turner, the head of research at Messary Inc., believes that the connection between Bitcoin halvings and Bitcoin price surges is very thin.

Gil Luria from DA DA Davidson & Co thinks
likewise:

“There are so many factors that impact the price of Bitcoin, but this should not be one of them.”

Photo by Aleksi Räisä on Unsplash

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Brian Kelly Talks Bitcoin (BTC) ‘Halvening,’ Gives Portfolio Recommendation

Brian Kelly Bitcoin Halvening Price 2019

Brian Kelly, CEO of digital currency investment firm BKCM LLC and regular pundit on cryptocurrency, appeared on CNBC to explain Bitcoin’s current run to $8000 and how he imagines the price could rise even further.

Speaking with CNBC’s Fast Money program on May 21, the fund manager highlighted Bitcoin’s upcoming ‘halvening’ as a potential multiplier for the price of the currency. While the next reduction in mining rewards–when the payout falls from 12.5 to 6.25 BTC per block mined–is still a year away, Kelly believes the market ramifications will be felt even earlier.

In exactly 365 days we will experience the third bitcoin halving in history. This event marks a 50% decrease of block rewards, lowering the total supply of bitcoins mined from one block to only 6.25 BTC. How will you celebrate this event?

At present, Kelly claims that miners are hoarding BTC in anticipation of increased demand and a higher valuation in the future. While the 12.5 BTC reward payout gives them the luxury to retain some Bitcoin, as opposed to immediately selling it on the market to recoup operating and electricity costs, Kelly predicts that will be less convenient following the halvening. In addition, miners are looking to the growth of institutional investment and adoption to take the price of Bitcoin well beyond its current $8000 range.

In conjunction with a 50% reduction in new Bitcoin creation, the growth of cryptocurrency into institutional and retail use-cases will further drive demand. Increased demand and dwindling supply is what makes Kelly think that Bitcoin is in for a bullish cycle ahead, both in the lead up to the halvening and its in aftermath.

Kelly commented on the four year market cycle that characterizes each halvening, concluding that the current period has historically been good for the price of Bitcoin,  

“You generally have a rally a year into it, and a year out of it. And so we’re just at the beginning of that stage […] a supply cut is generally bullish.”

In addition to sharing his insight on the halving and what it means for upcoming Bitcoin prices, Kelly also gave a recommendation for asset allocation. He advised investors to dedicate between 1 and 5 percent of their overall portfolio to Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, while the price of BTC is still hovering at the $8000 mark.

Analysts have been split between bullish and bearish for Bitcoin following the massive rally that kicked off in early April. While the price of BTC is up over 100 percent since the start of 2019, some analysts see the bullish rally as short-lived and could see BTC retesting $6000 before generating continued price momentum.

Others have begun to point to geopolitical factors and economic policy as being the key drivers for Bitcoin price growth. With a trade war brewing between the U.S. and China, economic uncertainty over the USD/Yuan exchange rate has certain investors turning to Bitcoin as an alternative investment.

The rise of mainstream adoption for cryptocurrency also continues to be a major talking point for digital assets. Facebook has relaxed its policy on cryptocurrency advertisement in anticipation of launching its own stablecoin. Jack Dorsey’s payment platform Square also announced cryptocurrency adoption to be “inevitable,” giving an indication of the shifting sentiment towards Bitcoin compared to a year ago.

Disclaimer: Investing in cryptocurrency is inherently risky.

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