You know the end of the year is nigh when the predictions for the next year start showing up.
The Global Business Council sees a lot of interesting things happening in 2019, ranging from an intensified U.S.-China trade war to an emerging-markets credit crisis to a shortage of sand. But second on its Top 10 list is bitcoin (BTC).
Consider what the 10-year-old bitcoin has been through. Bitcoin dropped from more than 90 percent of the total cryptocurrency market capitalization in January 2016 to just 33 percent in February 2018, the council said. It sees the cryptocurrency recovering nearly two-thirds of its market capitalization next year as investors become increasingly wary of riskier altcoins.
Bear in mind that, compared with other crypto, bitcoin still leads the market cap list at $68,531,534,916, according to CoinMarketCap, which supplies data to ThirtyK.
The council, which worked with consultant ATKearney on the predictions list, expects financial regulators to “soften their stance toward the [cryptocurrency] sector.” For instance, it cites the U.K. Parliament’s Treasury Committee’s work to end the “wild west” nature of crypto markets, prevent criminal activity and “reduce price volatility” in the U.K.
And what about a long-awaited bitcoin ETF in the U.S.? The council predicts the Securities and Exchange Commission will “warm to bitcoin exchange-traded funds” and, working with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, focus on improving market transparency.
As for beyond 2019, the council found it ironic that “for cryptocurrencies to see a third decade, the only viable path forward involves this acceptance by the international financial system that bitcoin once sought to defeat.” Which is why you now have the Blockchain Association and the Securing America’s Internet of Value Coalition formed to lobby American policymakers to improve cryptocurrencies’ image in 2019.