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Bitcoin could reach $100,000 by the end of next year, an analyst at Standard Chartered has claimed.
Geoffrey Kendrick said he expected investors to pile their money into cryptocurrency markets now that the “crypto winter” was over.
This month the digital currency’s value rose above $30,000 for the first time since June, although it has slipped back in recent days.
Despite this, Kendrink, the bank’s head of digital assets research, said the recent turmoil around the global banking sector had helped to re-establish bitcoin’s status as a safe-haven asset class.
Kendrick also highlighted other factors, including the improved profitability of crypto mining; the stabilisation of risk assets; and expectations that the Federal Reserve would ease its monetary tightening policy.
These should make the pathway to the $100,000-mark clearer, he said, adding that regulatory developments should provide further tailwinds. Kendrick noted the European Union’s Markets in Crypto Assets regulation, which he believes “could have constructive implications for investor interest and volatility”.
Bitcoin, the world’s most popular cryptocurrency, embarked on an extraordinary rally in late 2020, through into 2021 and peaking at a cent shy of $69,000 in November 2021. Its worth declined sharply last year, with the currency losing more than two thirds of its peak value, as appetite for it waned amid worries about the health of the global economy and the demise of the now-bankrupt FTX exchange.
The next bitcoin halving — a process whereby the reward for mining a new block is halved every four years for every 210,000 blocks produced — is also poised to be a positive driver for its value. “While we note that previous halvings have had a successively smaller impact on bitcoin prices, prices have bounced around each halving,” Kendrick said. “ This should add a cyclical tailwind to the structural positives at play.”
Predictions of sky-high valuations have been commonplace during bitcoin’s past rallies. In 2020, analysts at Citigroup said they believed it could climb to as much as $318,000 by the end of 2022. However, it closed last year down about 65 per cent at $16,500.