‘The halving’ approaches, and all eyes are on the value of Bitcoin

A UK BITCOIN exchange says more people are entering the Bitcoin market in the run-up to the halving in May.

A halving (sometimes called a “halvening”), aimed at controlling inflation, is where the Bitcoin miners receive half the amount of Bitcoins for verifying transactions. This is the third halving in Bitcoin’s history, with the reward due to reduce from 12.5 BTC to 6.25 BTC per block. Halvings are scheduled to happen roughly every four years, or every 210,000 blocks, until all 21m Bitcoins have been mined.

The CoinCorner exchange is reporting month-over-month growth in the number of people signing up for an account and buying Bitcoin since the start of the 2020. (Month-over-month growth is the change in value as a percentage of the previous month’s value.)

CoinCorner CEO Danny Scott says that “history tells us that the Bitcoin price will begin to rise significantly within the (next) 12 months”.

Not everyone agrees, however. Options traders are buying put options and pushing Bitcoin’s put-call open interest ratio higher as the halving approaches. The ratio has this week risen to 0.61, the highest level since late February, after hitting a low of 0.42 on March 24.

A put-call open interest ratio measures the number of put options open relative to calls. A put option gives the holder the right to sell the asset at a predetermined price, on or before a specific date. A call option gives the right to buy.

New customer numbers for CoinCorner in February were up five percent compared to January, and March was up 17.6 percent compared to February. “We expect to see this trend continue,” said Scott.

The global crisis and “a number of notable events in Bitcoin’s pipeline over the next nine months” were causing speculation that another “bull run” was on the horizon, according to Scott.