Bitcoin

BTCUSDBITSTAMP
BTCUSD
BitcoinBITSTAMP
 
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History of BTCUSD

Important events

Jan 312023

Bitcoin gets difficult

As if it wasn’t already hard enough, Bitcoin is now harder to mine than it’s ever been.

  • Bitcoin mining difficulty reached a new all-time high after jumping by 4.68% on Sunday. Mining difficulty is the amount of computational power that’s needed to facilitate transactions on the Bitcoin network. A higher difficulty indicates a larger number of BTC miners.
  • While not at an all-time high, the network's hash rate is also up over the course of last year. Bitcoin’s hash rate (which measures the volume of proof-of-work calculations being carried out), has rocketed by 67% YoY.
  • These stats might indicate that BTC miners aren’t losing faith, despite BTC falling by 40% over the past year. In addition to the price drop, rising energy costs have been squeezing the industry. The bankruptcy of BTC mining giant, Core Scientific, in December probably didn’t help morale either. Hang in there guys.
愚木混株 cdd20 / Unsplash

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Jan 272023

Bitcoin bruises Tesla

Tesla remains in its pro-Bitcoin stance, but it’s not doing its balance sheet any favors.

  • Tesla reported a $34m impairment charge on its Bitcoin holdings over Q4 , with the value of its supply dropping from $218m to $184m. As it stands BTC is up 38% YTD despite being down 38% YoY.
  • The company got serious about BTC in February 2021 when it purchased $1.5bn worth. By the second quarter of 2022 however, it had sold 75% of its Bitcoin holdings – with its digital assets sales for the period amounting to $936m.
  • Despite the selloff, Tesla remains the fifth-largest public company that holds Bitcoin with roughly 10.7k BTC. It also reported that it had neither purchased nor sold any BTC during its final quarter last year – indicating that it’s in it for the long run.
Manny Becerra / Unsplash
Jan 162023

Trading blows

The battle between Grayscale and the SEC rages on, with Grayscale making their position crystal clear.

  • Crypto investment firm Grayscale Bitcoin Trust has called the SEC’s argument “illogical”, in its decision to not allow the company to open a Bitcoin spot ETF. The litigation first began in June last year.
  • The SEC is maintaining that the $7.8bn company has not shown how it would protect investors from “fraudulent and manipulative” practices. That being said however, the SEC has approved Bitcoin-based ETFs for the company, but not spot Bitcoin ETFs.
  • The statement comes as the discount for Grayscale’s Bitcoin futures ETF is hovering around all-time highs – sitting at around 39.68%. Recently however, its share price has been reaping the rewards of the recent crypto rally – rising by over 30% last week.
Tingey Injury Law Firm / Unsplash
Jan 032023

Unfair to the core

One of the longest running contributors to Bitcoin Core has suffered a hack. All is fair in love and crypto, it seems.

  • Luke Dashjr, a developer of the software which operates Bitcoin nodes, has suffered a hack to the tune of at least 217 BTC – worth around $3.6m. Dashjr said that the hack was the result of his private key being compromised.
  • The hack was high profile enough for Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao, to reach out – tweeting that if the funds are ever sent to Binance they will be frozen. He also said that the hack highlights some of the risks of having a self-custody wallet.
  • Dashjr also warned that users should refrain from using Bitcoin Knots – a Bitcoin wallet which is operated using his now-compromised key. It just goes to show that even crypto veterans can fall victim to crypto crime. Keep those keys safe folks.
Unsplash
Dec 072022

Too difficult for some

Bitcoin miners haven’t exactly been thriving this year – with some deciding it’s no longer worth the time.

  • Bitcoin mining difficulty has fallen by 7.5% in the single biggest drop since it plummeted by almost 28% when crypto mining was banned in China in July 2021. The lowered difficulty and resulting cheaper operating costs might provide miners with some welcome breathing room.
  • It’s not a great sign though, as it means that BTC miners are starting to unplug their machines. A combination of rising energy prices and a diminished BTC price has caused mining profitability to slide and debts to begin to accumulate.
  • There’s also been an influx of mining machines hitting the market, with the average price of an ASIC mining machine dropping by 80% YoY. With Ethereum having switched to proof-of-stake this year, crypto miners seem to be running out of good options.
Muhammad Asyfaul/ Unsplash
Nov 222022

Investors are jittery af

Bitcoin’s been taking a beating this year, and it’s only being made worse by news of a crypto lender in trouble.

  • Bitcoin HODLers are on the edge of their seats with the potential bankruptcy of Genesis. Whilst not yet having filed for bankruptcy, news of the possibility caused BTC to drop to $15,479 – its lowest level in two years. Binance has also ruled out a potential buyout of the lender.
  • These are dark days for BTC investors, with most addresses now in the red. Data by IntoTheBlock shows that 51% of total Bitcoin addresses are below the purchasing value of their holdings, with pandemic-related gains looking like a thing of the past.
  • Bitcoin miners aren’t faring any better. A perfect storm of rising electricity costs and plummeting BTC price means that mining is barely profitable – if at all. With Genesis in “constructive talks” with several creditors, perhaps a buyout would ease Bitcoiners’ concerns.
愚木混株 cdd20 / Unsplash
Nov 092022

A 2-year low

The entire crypto industry has been rattled by a series of unfortunate events that would make Lemony Snicket proud, causing catastrophic waves across the market.

  • Bitcoin has reached its lowest price in almost two years, currently below $18k. Ethereum touched a four-month low and is trading at a price of just $1,220. Crypto stocks like exchange Coinbase and crypto miner Riot Blockchain also suffered yesterday, dropping by 10.7% and 7.3% respectively.
  • There’s a variety of factors causing crypto’s most recent slump, including newly released CPI data leaving investors spooked and uncertainty surrounding the result of the midterm elections which could determine upcoming regulation.
  • What’s really shaken up the industry however is FTX being bought by Binance, and fears of contagion spreading from the platform’s liquidity issues. Dogecoin dropped by 20% yesterday and Solana plummeted more than 50% since the start of the week with pretty much every coin seeing drastic sell-offs and sending the overall crypto market cap into its worst week since mid-June.
Ussama Azam / Unsplash
Nov 082022

A Silk Road seizure

The Department of Justice never forgets, especially when it comes to $3.36bn worth of Bitcoin.

  • The DoJ has seized $3.36bn worth of Bitcoin that was stolen in a hack of the darknet marketplace Silk Road 10 years ago. With more than 50k BTC seized, it’s the second largest asset-seizure in crypto history.
  • The funds were stolen by James Zhong in 2012 after he manipulated the site’s payment processor to send the funds to his account. Zhong pleaded guilty to the charges in Manhattan in the same year, but the whereabouts of the funds had not been known until recently.
  • Crypto hacking has done anything but die down over the past decade. Last month became the worst month on record for crypto hacks with $718m worth of assets stolen, and Chainalysis reports that this year is on track to become the worst-ever year for crypto theft.
Kanchanara / Unsplash
Oct 262022

Taking back $20k

The crypto world’s looking a little brighter this morning with speculation on the Fed’s rate hikes pushing the industry’s valuation back over $1tn.

  • Crypto staged a comeback yesterday for its best day in over a month. BTC managed to at last retake the $20k mark and the industry as a whole managed to reclaim its $1tn value once again, ETH has rallied 15% in the last 36 hours to levels unseen since before the Merge, while ADA and SOL enjoyed the rally with gains of over 10% each in that time.
  • There’s a bunch of external factors propping up digital assets. The growth of home prices has slowed considerably, leading some to predict the Fed might slow the pace of its rate hikes (which helped the equities market to its third straight day of gains too). There have also been a number of promising earnings from large-cap companies like Coca-Cola to buoy hope for the overall economy.
  • There’s been some bullish news from across the pond as well, with UK lawmakers voting to recognize crypto as a regulated financial instrument. The country’s new PM, Rishi Sunak, also has a bit of a reputation as a crypto bro and many are hoping that will lead to a softening of regulation toward digital assets and therefore wider use cases and adoption. LFG.
David McBee / Pexels
Oct 242022

Will we get an Uptober this year?

BTC bulls are bored of Bitcoin’s stable price, but time is running out for this month to be the ‘Uptober’ investors were hoping for.

  • Bitcoin’s price has been uncharacteristically stable recently, with its 20-day rolling volatility lower than that of the Nasdaq for the first time since 2020. It’s got investors wondering when the next significant upward price movement might be.
  • Historically, October or ‘Uptober’ has been a positive month for BTC price, with the coin making gains in 10 out of the 13 Octobers since its creation. With only one week remaining however, it’s not looking like any gains are in store for BTC, which is still hovering around $19k.
  • Some think that a lower volatility will benefit Bitcoin, as institutional investors are more likely to invest in something with more predictability. For those already HODLing however, it’s less exciting, with BTC down by 60% since the start of the year.
愚木混株 cdd20 / Unsplash
Oct 192022

The second-biggest outflow in history

In another development of the recent Bitcoin saga, investors are now switching from selling mode to accumulation mode.

  • Bitcoin saw a mass exodus from Coinbase Pro on Tuesday after 48k BTC (worth $940m) was removed from the exchange in the second biggest crypto outflow of all time. As a platform popular with institutional investors, it might indicate that they're putting the brakes on selling for a while.
  • Over 121k BTC (nearly $2.4bn) has left exchanges in the past 30 days. A spike in outflows is generally seen as a bullish signal because it means traders are wanting to hold onto their stash instead of engaging in selling – some analysts are even predicting a bottom for BTC because, historically, that’s what’s followed huge outflows like this.
  • Bitcoin’s correlation to the stock market hit an all-time high last month, with its price still strongly affected by economic data reports. Recently however, it’s been uncharacteristically stable with its volatility hitting a 2-year low despite the wobble in traditional markets – in fact, crypto has proven to be one of the best-performing asset classes of Q3. Who woulda thought.
Jeremy Bezanger / Unsplash
Oct 142022

The correlation continues

Bitcoin’s moves are increasingly tied to real-world markets, with CPI data shaking up the crypto space once again.

  • Bitcoin has reaffirmed it's not as separate from real world markets as some might hope, after coming close to touching $18k with the release of Fed’s CPI report. BTC’s also fallen by around 20% over the last two months amid rapidly rising inflation rates, but it’s managed to recover somewhat from its most recent dip to a price of around $19.6k.
  • Analysts are noticing a pretty strong correlation between BTC and traditional finance. In recent weeks, Bitcoin’s been broadly following the performance of indexes like the S&P 500 as well as equities markets, with the rest of the cryptoverse following in its footsteps.
  • Crypto-related stocks have also been struggling to withstand the inflation pressure.
    Coinbase dropped by as much as 11% with the release of the CPI data, while Mircrostrategy and Riot Blockchain are both struggling with drops in the region of 7%. So much for its independence from traditional markets.
愚木混株 cdd20 / Unsplash
Oct 132022

The SEC ain't DTF with ETFs

A pro-crypto group tells the SEC “enough is enough” with its dithering on whether spot Bitcoin ETFs should be legal.

  • Grayscale has filed an opening brief in its Bitcoin ETF battle against SEC. The Digital Currency Group (who owns Grayscale) is fighting back against the denial of its Bitcoin spot ETF, saying its “unfair and discriminatory” to approve a futures ETF but deny its own ETF application.
  • It’s not the only group struggling with the SEC’s rejections. New York based fund WisdomTree also had their requests denied the same day the brief came out after trying to register its own spot BTC ETF for listing on the Cboe BZX Exchange, with the SEC saying its actions were taken to “prevent fraudulent practices”.
  • As it stands, the SEC has never approved a spot Bitcoin ETF despite approving Bitcoin futures ETFs for groups including ProShares and Valkyrie in 2021, despite receiving a fair bit of criticism from lawmakers for doing so. Perhaps the SEC will eventually turn on its heels but sometimes, but all is fair in love and crypto so who knows.
Reinhart Julian / Unsplash
Oct 112022

The battle for BTC

Bitcoin miners are having to pull out all the stops as difficulty levels hover around their highest of all time.

  • Mining difficulty on the Bitcoin network is up by 14% in the two weeks ended on Monday to touch new highs, representing the largest two-week adjustment since May when it rose by 22%. A higher mining difficulty means lower revenues and pressured margins as more time is taken to correctly guess the cryptographic hash.
  • Mining-centric companies are struggling to keep their head above water amid an already lagging crypto market. Argo Blockchain was forced to raise $27m last week to stay afloat, and mining data center Compute North filed for bankruptcy last month. Some pretty substantial BTC price gains will be needed to ease the pressure.
  • BTC mining ain't what it used to be, and nor is BTC’s value, with prices oscillating around $20k since June. A technical indicator called the Bollinger bandwidth, which is popular for gauging volatility, has shrunk to its narrowest since 2020 – the past five times it's been similarly narrow in the last two years, BTC has gone on to slide up to 15% in the weeks following.
Rodion Kutsaiev / Unsplash
Oct 052022

Bit bullions

Is Bit the new bullion? It very well might be as Bitcoin's correlation with gold becomes stronger every day.

  • Bitcoin’s correlation with gold has reached its highest level in the last year, with investors being lured away from the so-called ‘inflation hedges’ by the strength of the dollar and high bond yields. ‘Digital gold’ has never been a more appropriate nickname.
  • Both Bitcoin and gold have seen drastic drops this year, although over the last two days BTC rose by more than 5%. Rising interest rates are partly to blame for Bitcoin’s plummeting price this year, as institutional investors are less willing to hop on board.
  • Ironically, BTC is often closely correlated with traditional markets, despite its founding ethos being an alternative to those systems, and as the largest cryptocurrency by market cap at $379bn – its relationship with traditional finance is important to the entire crypto space.
Jonathan Borba / Unsplash
Sep 302022

The British are coming

When people are running to Bitcoin as a ‘safe haven’ from their national currency, it can’t be good.

  • Trading volumes of GBP to BTC went to the moon this week, with volumes on Bitstamp and Bitfinex reaching a record $881m on Monday when the pound slumped to an all-time low against the dollar. GBP now has the highest BTC volumes of the four biggest currencies in the world, overtaking the Japanese yen.
  • GBP has been in turmoil recently, with skyrocketing inflation and ripple effects from the government’s ‘mini-budget’ causing chaos in the markets. This month alone, the pound has dropped by 7% against the dollar, and the historic tax cuts laid out in the government’s financial plan are making things worse – and putting BTC in the spotlight.
  • Analysts however can’t make up their minds on what it’s all about. Some believe what we’re seeing is investors looking for a safe-haven from the plummeting pound, but others think it could just be traders looking to profit from the volatility. Whichever it is, until you can buy houses with BTC, it’s not a great position to be in.
Christopher Bill / Unsplash
Sep 152022

Coming to the end of the tunnel?

Bitcoin mining’s becoming a bit like playing chess with your know-it-all dad – too hard to even be fun anymore.

  • Bitcoin’s mining difficulty has reached a new all-time high, jumping by 3.45% on Tuesday to 32.05tn hashes. This is the second significant increase in three weeks with difficulty shooting up by 9.26% on August 31. Profits for Bitcoin miners are now looking mighty thin as greater computation power is required to mine.
  • BTC’s not been having a great time of it recently, dropping by almost 10% on Tuesday and sustaining losses since then, joined in its declines by the broader market with ETH and BNB plummeting around 8% and 5.6% the same day – the overall crypto market closed below $1tn on Wednesday.
  • According to some, high mining difficulty is actually a rly good sign. Scott Norris, co-founder of private BTC mining company LSJ Ops, said that it’s an “indicator of a strong and growing network”. However, the fact that mining profits were below $1bn for a fourth consecutive month in August is still gonna have a lot of miners p’d off.
Jeremy Bezanger / Unsplash
Sep 012022

BTC miners battle for profits

Bitcoin miners battle to break even with skyrocketing difficulty levels making profit margins as thin as your cat squeezing under the neighbor’s fence.

  • Bitcoin mining difficulty has risen by over 9% in the last two weeks in the largest increase in difficulty since January. It’s being caused by BTC miners in Texas turning their machines back on after a heat wave prompted a mass switch-off over summer, and a higher difficulty level means a lower chance of receiving profits for mining companies.
  • BTC fell by almost 10% last week while it battled to hold the $20k mark, but don’t hold your breath – analysts are predicting that imminent Fed action could cause further drops. With mining difficulty hovering at 30.97tn (just below its all time high of 31.25tn in May), BTC mining companies like Core Scientific and Riot Blockchain are in for a tough ride.
  • Bitcoin miners don’t seem to be discouraged despite the challenges. The network’s hashrate – an indication of mining activity – remains strong at around 220 EH/s. Shares in Core Scientific and Riot Blockchain have dropped this year by 79% and 68% respectively but rn it looks like they’re doubling down rather than backing out.
Pressure / cottonbro / Pexels
Aug 222022

Crypto bulls get cold feet

Any crypto bulls that were taking off their wooly hats to prepare for the end of the crypto winter get a stark reminder that bear season ain’t over yet. Bundle up peeps.

  • The crypto industry felt a sharp selloff last week with nearly $200bn worth of crypto dumped. The value of the overall industry’s now fallen below $1tn – its lowest valuation since December 2020. BTC fell by nearly 12% last week with ETH taking an even bigger beating of 16% over the same period to close at its lowest price since mid-July.
  • The Fed’s monetary policy seems to be to blame as investors predict further rate-hikes incoming, which is prolly why crypto-related stocks also felt the squeeze. Coinbase plummeted by over 11% on Friday and famed HODLer MicroStrategy sank nearly 13% to erase its August gains.
  • Many analysts are warning of more turbulence ahead, pointing to the absence of a BTC futures premium, $470m in liquidations and unrestrained stablecoin lending as symptomatic of new lows to come. Worth noting that some tokens actually managed to defy the selloff entirely, with the likes of layer-1 blockchain EOS rallying more than 23% over the weekend while most others sold off.
GuerrillaBuzz Crypto PR / Unsplash
Aug 122022

Asset managers ignore the rout

Asset managers ain’t fazed by recent market bearishness, still seeing enough demand for BlackRock to up its Bitcoin offering game.

  • BlackRock has launched a spot Bitcoin private trust. As the largest money management firm in the world, it’s a pretty shiny vote of confidence for crypto as an asset class. BlackRock founder Larry Fink has come a long way from describing BTC as little more than a vehicle for money laundering.
  • Bitcoin has been enjoying the cool-down of the recent market panic. The OG token has risen by a substantial 12% over the last month, which prolly has something to do with the fact that inflation doesn’t seem to be getting any worse (for now) – CPI data on Wednesday drove BTC to its highest close since mid-June.
  • It looks like crypto might be beginning to shake its institutional stigma despite seeing such losses this year. US investment group Charles Schwab recently launched a crypto-related ETF, the UK’s Schroders has acquired a stake in digital assets manager Forteus, and Goldman Sachs announced its first ever Bitcoin-backed loan in April.
Muhammad Asyfaul / Unsplash