You have most likely heard of Bitcoin, either through your best friend who made a profit by investing in it or by reading about it in the news, which has been covering the subject relentlessly since the cryptocurrency made massive gains in December 2017. In many ways, Bitcoin has set the precedent for other cryptocurrencies to follow in terms of its technology and capability. It has started an interesting revolution in the world of finance and digital transactions, and is increasingly changing the way we perceive money.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and a global payment system. To be more precise, it is a decentralised digital currency; the first of its kind. The system is based on peer-to-peer network wherein, transactions between the users take place directly without the need for a centralised intermediary such as a central bank or an administrator. These transactions are validated by the nodes present in the network through cryptography and digital signatures which are then recorded in the form of blocks in a public distributed ledger called blockchain. Needless to mention, with every Bitcoin transaction that takes place, the size of the blockchain increases.
The cryptocurrency came into existence in 2008, when a paper titled ‘Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System’ authored by Satoshi Nakamoto was published on bitcoin.org. In 2009, the Bitcoin network was formed after Nakamoto mined the first block on the blockchain, often known as the genesis block. Starting from 2011, based on Bitcoin’s source code, other cryptocurrencies came into existence.
The dramatic surge in Bitcoin price can be attributed to a host of factors, the most popular of which for many, is the opportunity to make a quick buck. However, the real reason why Bitcoin is gaining so much traction lies in its inherent design. Bitcoin, in its purest form, is meant to be a decentralised digital currency. There is no central governing authority like the Reserve Bank of India or the Federal Reserve monitoring the transactions or the number of Bitcoins in circulation.
Speaking of circulation, Bitcoin’s inventor Nakamoto, at the time of developing the cryptocurrency, set a policy that the maximum number of Bitcoins that will ever be in circulation is 21 million, or in other words, only 21 million Bitcoins can be mined. As of February 2018, more than 16 million Bitcoins are available.
What is Blockchain?
It is worth mentioning that blockchain technology is responsible for the revolution that we are witnessing in the world of digital currency. The very existence of Bitcoin is based on the idea of the blockchain. Simply put, a blockchain is a continuously growing list of public records, or in the case of Bitcoins - transactions. These transactions can be considered to be blocks which are added to the blockchain once they are verified.
Being an open, distributed ledger, there is absolutely no need for a central authority to validate the transactions. Whenever someone makes a transaction, its information is transmitted to the entire network. The computers present in the network then perform complex mathematical calculations using special software based on the principles of cryptography to validate the transaction. If the transaction is valid, it is added to the blockchain, thus linking it to the previous transaction.
Each block adheres to strict cryptographic rules and contains transaction data, timestamp, and a cryptographic hash of the previous block. Therefore, changing the data in any given block (after it has been added to the blockchain) requires the alteration of all the subsequent blocks which is not possible without the collaboration of the network. Furthermore, this also the problem of double-spending without the need for a central oversight.
What is Bitcoin Mining?
The process of confirming and securing these Bitcoin transactions is called mining. Since validating these transactions requires a lot of computational power and energy, people undertaking this arduous task (known as miners) are rewarded with newly created Bitcoins for their efforts, in addition to transaction fees. Bitcoin mining involves verifying and adding transaction data to Bitcoin’s worldwide public ledger of previous transactions (blockchain) in the form of blocks. This enforces a chronological order in the blockchain and ensures that neutrality is maintained throughout the network. It also serves to confirm to the rest of the network that transactions have taken place.
A fixed amount of Bitcoin is released for every mined block and this ‘reward’ is halved roughly every four years. In 2009, the amount of Bitcoin one could earn through mining was 50 and in 2018, the same is 12.5. This will continue to decrease in the years to come. A new block is added to the blockchain every 10 minutes. Considering that only 21 million Bitcoins can be mined, the process of mining becomes more difficult in order to keep the Bitcoin creation rate stable.
You can understand miners to be like auditors who serve the purpose of verifying Bitcoin transactions and adding the same to the public ledger. While this may sound like an easy gig, the truth is a bit more complicated. To successfully validate the transactions and add the same to a new block, one has to solve a difficult mathematical puzzle and the first participant to solve this puzzle wins the Bitcoin reward. Since many miners are working towards earning the Bitcoin reward, a certain amount of luck is required to be the first party to solve the puzzle.
The difficulty of this puzzle depends on the amount of effort that is being put into solving these puzzles across the network. If more computational power is employed into mining, then the difficulty will increase and vice-versa.
When Bitcoin entered the market back in 2009, mining could be done with the help of normal CPUs from regular computers. However, as the cryptocurrency became popular, the mining difficulty was increased and graphics processing units (GPUs) were employed to solve puzzles. As a rule of thumb, GPUs are inherently better CPUs at mining. Eventually, specialised Bitcoin mining rigs known as ASIC Bitcoin miners were designed, the cost of which can be anywhere between $500 - $3,000.
If you are looking to mine Bitcoin, you need to consider the cost of investment, cost of power consumed and calculate if the returns generated exceed the expenses incurred.
Understanding Bitcoin Transactions
A Bitcoin transaction involves a transfer of value between Bitcoin wallets, achieved with the help of private key(s)and public key. Simply put, the private key - a long string of letters and numbers - proves the right of the holder to spend Bitcoins from a specific wallet. The private key is used to digitally sign transactions and it also serves as a mathematical proof that the Bitcoins have indeed come from the wallet of the owner. Keep in mind that the private key must never be shared with anyone and it is highly advisable to keep a backup of the same. As for the public key (also known as Bitcoin address), it is much like a social username or an email address that is known to everybody.
The owner here is essentially transferring the ownership of his/her Bitcoins by signing it digitally over to the next person, similar to a bank cheque. This is done by generating a signature that is essentially a mathematical combination of the private key, message, and transaction details. A new code is generated for every transaction that takes place. This means digital signatures vary with every transaction, thus making it highly secure and near-impossible to forge.
Bitcoin Price Through the Years
Bitcoin as a cryptocurrency has been around the block for quite some time now. Up until the end of 2016, Bitcoin price remained steadily under $1,000 per coin without undergoing a lot of fluctuation. In retrospect, investing in Bitcoin at that point in time would have proven to be a brilliant investment but it wasn’t until 2017 that the markets realised its true potential.
|Nov 12, 2018||6,411.76||6,434.21||6,360.47||6,371.27||4,295,770,000||110,689,666,528|
|Nov 11, 2018||6,413.63||6,423.25||6,350.17||6,411.27||3,939,060,000||111,373,453,740|
|Nov 10, 2018||6,386.13||6,437.28||6,385.31||6,409.22||3,705,320,000||111,326,145,314|
|Nov 09, 2018||6,442.60||6,456.46||6,373.37||6,385.62||4,346,820,000||110,905,767,441|
|Nov 08, 2018||6,522.27||6,536.92||6,438.53||6,453.72||4,665,260,000||112,078,367,037|
|Nov 07, 2018||6,468.50||6,552.16||6,468.31||6,530.14||4,941,260,000||113,395,632,955|
|Nov 06, 2018||6,433.38||6,463.55||6,408.16||6,461.01||4,700,040,000||112,095,603,776|
|Nov 05, 2018||6,363.62||6,480.59||6,363.62||6,419.66||4,174,800,000||111,456,211,022|
|Nov 04, 2018||6,365.47||6,388.63||6,294.57||6,376.13||4,390,020,000||110,689,215,104|
|Nov 03, 2018||6,387.24||6,400.07||6,342.37||6,361.26||3,658,640,000||110,421,212,888|
|Nov 02, 2018||6,378.92||6,396.86||6,327.38||6,388.44||4,234,870,000||110,880,236,966|
|Nov 01, 2018||6,318.14||6,547.14||6,311.83||6,377.78||3,789,400,000||110,683,820,788|
|Oct 31, 2018||6,336.99||6,349.16||6,316.88||6,317.61||4,191,240,000||109,627,117,226|
|Oct 30, 2018||6,337.04||6,364.99||6,310.14||6,334.27||3,781,100,000||109,939,406,526|
|Oct 29, 2018||6,492.35||6,503.60||6,306.99||6,332.63||4,199,910,000||112,621,848,702|
|Oct 28, 2018||6,482.66||6,502.28||6,447.91||6,486.39||3,445,190,000||112,442,610,028|
|Oct 27, 2018||6,480.84||6,507.41||6,453.53||6,480.38||3,393,250,000||112,399,900,488|
|Oct 26, 2018||6,468.44||6,498.29||6,449.61||6,474.75||3,306,050,000||112,173,455,380|
|Oct 25, 2018||6,484.65||6,504.65||6,447.03||6,476.29||3,230,550,000||112,443,233,257|
|Oct 24, 2018||6,478.89||6,521.99||6,468.86||6,495.84||3,424,670,000||112,334,356,277|
|Oct 23, 2018||6,472.36||6,506.01||6,451.27||6,475.74||3,716,150,000||112,208,672,191|
|Oct 22, 2018||6,486.05||6,543.80||6,462.98||6,487.16||3,672,860,000||112,433,242,751|
|Oct 21, 2018||6,490.09||6,556.38||6,476.00||6,482.35||3,253,610,000||112,492,164,597|
|Oct 20, 2018||6,460.92||6,497.72||6,449.00||6,489.19||3,379,130,000||111,975,104,604|
|Oct 19, 2018||6,478.07||6,493.68||6,445.31||6,465.41||3,578,870,000||112,260,867,815|
|Oct 18, 2018||6,542.33||6,567.54||6,450.04||6,476.71||3,924,080,000||113,362,957,170|
|Oct 17, 2018||6,590.52||6,601.21||6,517.45||6,544.43||4,088,420,000||114,186,770,970|
|Oct 16, 2018||6,601.41||6,673.59||6,571.37||6,596.11||4,074,800,000||114,364,427,917|
|Oct 15, 2018||6,292.64||6,965.06||6,258.68||6,596.54||7,370,770,000||109,002,222,118|
|Oct 14, 2018||6,288.49||6,363.21||6,280.15||6,290.93||3,085,320,000||108,921,493,433|
|Oct 13, 2018||6,278.08||6,308.51||6,259.81||6,285.99||3,064,030,000||108,730,110,384|
|Oct 12, 2018||6,239.25||6,328.50||6,236.47||6,274.58||3,783,500,000||108,047,410,049|
|Oct 11, 2018||6,586.74||6,586.74||6,243.74||6,256.24||5,181,640,000||114,051,783,103|
|Oct 10, 2018||6,640.29||6,640.29||6,538.96||6,585.53||3,787,650,000||114,967,098,651|
|Oct 09, 2018||6,653.08||6,661.41||6,606.94||6,642.64||3,580,810,000||115,177,623,331|
|Oct 08, 2018||6,600.19||6,675.06||6,576.04||6,652.23||3,979,460,000||114,251,052,224|
|Oct 07, 2018||6,590.68||6,641.49||6,557.04||6,602.95||3,306,630,000||114,074,648,410|
|Oct 06, 2018||6,622.45||6,628.54||6,577.80||6,588.31||3,259,740,000||114,614,282,649|
|Oct 05, 2018||6,574.15||6,623.62||6,557.41||6,622.48||3,671,500,000||113,767,335,788|
|Oct 04, 2018||6,497.91||6,603.31||6,497.91||6,576.69||3,838,410,000||112,435,991,226|
|Oct 03, 2018||6,553.86||6,571.46||6,454.03||6,502.59||3,887,310,000||113,392,236,466|
|Oct 02, 2018||6,593.24||6,611.84||6,537.90||6,556.10||3,979,260,000||114,062,551,875|
|Oct 01, 2018||6,619.85||6,653.30||6,549.08||6,589.62||4,000,970,000||114,509,724,600|
|Sep 30, 2018||6,604.71||6,643.78||6,566.54||6,625.56||4,002,280,000||114,234,369,232|
|Sep 29, 2018||6,643.10||6,643.10||6,511.65||6,601.96||4,363,690,000||114,885,697,090|
|Sep 28, 2018||6,678.75||6,785.03||6,598.32||6,644.13||5,014,430,000||115,489,513,453|
|Sep 27, 2018||6,495.29||6,712.10||6,464.95||6,676.75||4,606,810,000||112,305,283,440|
|Sep 26, 2018||6,452.79||6,585.91||6,397.89||6,495.00||4,437,300,000||111,559,240,252|
|Sep 25, 2018||6,603.64||6,603.64||6,381.86||6,446.47||4,726,180,000||114,153,287,747|
|Sep 24, 2018||6,704.77||6,713.56||6,580.90||6,595.41||4,177,310,000||115,889,159,338|
|Sep 23, 2018||6,715.32||6,766.15||6,679.42||6,710.63||4,197,500,000||116,058,736,872|
|Sep 22, 2018||6,735.05||6,814.56||6,616.80||6,721.98||4,509,660,000||116,386,818,047|
|Sep 21, 2018||6,513.87||6,794.33||6,496.36||6,734.95||6,531,940,000||112,552,829,858|
|Sep 20, 2018||6,398.85||6,529.26||6,395.95||6,519.67||4,348,110,000||110,553,109,981|
|Sep 19, 2018||6,371.85||6,448.46||6,208.34||6,398.54||4,431,340,000||110,074,137,715|
|Sep 18, 2018||6,280.91||6,384.18||6,265.71||6,371.30||4,180,090,000||108,492,112,339|
|Sep 17, 2018||6,514.06||6,540.21||6,257.52||6,281.20||3,910,780,000||112,508,446,995|
|Sep 16, 2018||6,536.68||6,544.33||6,460.10||6,517.18||3,273,730,000||112,887,643,665|
|Sep 15, 2018||6,509.40||6,561.72||6,493.55||6,543.20||3,216,300,000||112,405,369,809|
|Sep 14, 2018||6,515.41||6,596.10||6,456.17||6,512.71||4,076,220,000||112,498,115,992|
|Sep 13, 2018||6,354.24||6,535.41||6,354.24||6,517.31||4,210,910,000||109,703,600,477|
|Sep 12, 2018||6,317.01||6,363.87||6,265.09||6,351.80||4,064,230,000||109,047,547,377|
|Sep 11, 2018||6,331.88||6,398.92||6,260.21||6,321.20||3,849,910,000||109,293,238,395|
|Sep 10, 2018||6,301.57||6,374.98||6,292.76||6,329.70||3,714,100,000||108,759,350,260|
|Sep 09, 2018||6,223.38||6,446.26||6,201.22||6,300.86||3,671,890,000||107,397,286,192|
|Sep 08, 2018||6,460.17||6,534.25||6,197.52||6,225.98||3,835,060,000||111,471,362,532|
|Sep 07, 2018||6,528.92||6,555.29||6,396.87||6,467.07||4,264,680,000||112,645,200,318|
|Sep 06, 2018||6,755.14||6,755.14||6,404.72||6,529.17||5,523,470,000||116,535,447,253|
|Sep 05, 2018||7,361.46||7,388.43||6,792.83||6,792.83||5,800,460,000||126,983,440,721|
|Sep 04, 2018||7,263.00||7,388.26||7,255.44||7,361.66||4,273,640,000||125,273,528,713|
|Sep 03, 2018||7,279.03||7,317.94||7,208.15||7,260.06||4,087,760,000||125,536,575,445|
|Sep 02, 2018||7,189.58||7,306.31||7,132.16||7,272.72||4,329,540,000||123,981,305,470|
|Sep 01, 2018||7,044.81||7,242.29||7,038.05||7,193.25||4,116,050,000||121,471,295,533|
|Aug 31, 2018||6,973.97||7,057.17||6,920.16||7,037.58||4,495,650,000||120,236,411,575|
|Aug 30, 2018||7,043.76||7,072.69||6,834.69||6,978.23||4,463,250,000||121,426,092,460|
|Aug 29, 2018||7,091.71||7,113.30||6,970.82||7,047.16||4,145,880,000||122,240,446,825|
|Aug 28, 2018||6,891.08||7,109.56||6,882.34||7,096.28||4,659,940,000||118,768,797,345|
|Aug 27, 2018||6,710.80||6,884.64||6,689.71||6,884.64||4,019,000,000||115,646,248,487|
|Aug 26, 2018||6,754.64||6,774.75||6,620.75||6,707.26||3,295,500,000||116,387,236,698|
|Aug 25, 2018||6,719.95||6,789.63||6,700.96||6,763.19||3,312,600,000||115,778,181,501|
|Aug 24, 2018||6,551.52||6,719.96||6,498.64||6,719.96||4,097,820,000||112,864,138,781|
|Aug 23, 2018||6,371.34||6,546.54||6,371.34||6,534.88||3,426,180,000||109,748,424,726|
|Aug 22, 2018||6,486.25||6,816.79||6,310.11||6,376.71||4,668,110,000||111,714,827,567|
|Aug 21, 2018||6,301.07||6,500.87||6,298.24||6,488.76||3,377,180,000||108,513,649,180|
|Aug 20, 2018||6,500.51||6,536.92||6,297.93||6,308.53||3,665,100,000||111,936,076,638|
|Aug 19, 2018||6,422.57||6,537.98||6,361.55||6,506.07||3,311,170,000||110,582,598,384|
|Aug 18, 2018||6,583.43||6,617.35||6,353.73||6,423.76||3,984,520,000||113,338,906,417|
|Aug 17, 2018||6,340.91||6,582.50||6,324.97||6,580.63||4,992,990,000||109,151,601,195|
|Aug 16, 2018||6,294.23||6,473.50||6,276.41||6,334.73||4,328,420,000||108,335,763,931|
|Aug 15, 2018||6,221.42||6,588.49||6,221.42||6,308.52||4,895,450,000||107,070,056,730|
|Aug 14, 2018||6,287.66||6,287.94||5,971.05||6,199.71||5,301,700,000||108,199,097,492|
|Aug 13, 2018||6,341.36||6,537.05||6,225.72||6,297.57||4,083,980,000||109,111,523,954|
|Aug 12, 2018||6,283.65||6,409.85||6,237.50||6,322.69||5,665,250,000||108,106,451,582|
|Aug 11, 2018||6,185.79||6,455.74||6,109.03||6,295.73||4,047,850,000||106,409,456,302|
|Aug 10, 2018||6,571.42||6,591.26||6,124.52||6,184.71||4,528,680,000||113,028,788,092|
|Aug 09, 2018||6,305.56||6,625.73||6,249.07||6,568.23||4,267,040,000||108,444,366,975|
|Aug 08, 2018||6,746.85||6,746.85||6,226.22||6,305.80||5,064,430,000||116,020,470,612|
|Aug 07, 2018||6,958.32||7,146.56||6,748.24||6,753.12||4,682,800,000||119,643,646,094|
|Aug 06, 2018||7,062.94||7,166.55||6,890.54||6,951.80||3,925,900,000||121,430,864,537|
|Aug 05, 2018||7,031.08||7,102.77||6,940.70||7,068.48||3,679,110,000||120,869,247,490|
|Aug 04, 2018||7,438.67||7,497.49||6,984.07||7,032.85||4,268,390,000||127,859,350,021|
|Aug 03, 2018||7,562.14||7,562.14||7,328.65||7,434.39||4,627,150,000||129,965,898,111|
|Aug 02, 2018||7,634.19||7,712.77||7,523.44||7,567.15||4,214,110,000||131,189,721,712|
|Aug 01, 2018||7,769.04||7,769.04||7,504.95||7,624.91||4,797,620,000||133,492,645,169|
|Jul 31, 2018||8,181.20||8,181.53||7,696.93||7,780.44||5,287,530,000||140,559,547,538|
|Jul 30, 2018||8,221.58||8,235.50||7,917.50||8,180.48||5,551,400,000||141,239,444,979|
|Jul 29, 2018||8,205.82||8,272.26||8,141.18||8,218.46||4,107,190,016||140,951,371,776|
|Jul 28, 2018||8,169.06||8,222.85||8,110.77||8,192.15||3,988,750,080||140,305,137,664|
|Jul 27, 2018||7,950.40||8,262.66||7,839.76||8,165.01||5,195,879,936||136,532,811,776|
|Jul 26, 2018||8,176.85||8,290.33||7,878.71||7,951.58||4,899,090,000||140,405,000,000|
|Jul 25, 2018||8,379.66||8,416.87||8,086.36||8,181.39||5,845,400,000||143,869,000,000|
|Jul 24, 2018||7,716.51||8,424.27||7,705.50||8,424.27||7,277,690,000||132,468,000,000|
|Jul 23, 2018||7,414.71||7,771.50||7,409.10||7,711.11||5,132,480,000||127,272,000,000|
|Jul 22, 2018||7,417.80||7,537.95||7,383.82||7,418.49||3,695,460,000||127,308,000,000|
|Jul 21, 2018||7,352.72||7,437.64||7,262.41||7,419.29||3,726,610,000||126,178,000,000|
|Jul 20, 2018||7,467.40||7,594.67||7,323.26||7,354.13||4,936,870,000||128,132,000,000|
|Jul 19, 2018||7,378.20||7,494.46||7,295.46||7,466.86||5,111,630,000||126,585,000,000|
|Jul 18, 2018||7,315.32||7,534.99||7,280.47||7,370.78||6,103,410,000||125,491,000,000|
|Jul 17, 2018||6,739.65||7,387.24||6,684.17||7,321.04||5,961,950,000||115,602,000,000|
|Jul 16, 2018||6,357.01||6,741.75||6,357.01||6,741.75||4,725,800,000||109,029,000,000|
|Jul 15, 2018||6,272.70||6,403.46||6,256.51||6,359.64||3,285,460,000||107,573,000,000|
|Jul 14, 2018||6,247.50||6,298.19||6,212.22||6,276.12||2,923,670,000||107,130,000,000|
|Jul 13, 2018||6,235.03||6,310.55||6,192.24||6,238.05||3,805,400,000||106,906,000,000|
|Jul 12, 2018||6,396.78||6,397.10||6,136.42||6,228.81||3,770,170,000||109,667,000,000|
|Jul 11, 2018||6,330.77||6,444.96||6,330.47||6,394.71||3,644,860,000||108,525,000,000|
|Jul 10, 2018||6,739.21||6,767.74||6,320.72||6,329.95||4,052,430,000||115,514,000,000|
|Jul 09, 2018||6,775.08||6,838.68||6,724.34||6,741.75||3,718,130,000||116,118,000,000|
|Jul 08, 2018||6,857.80||6,885.91||6,747.98||6,773.88||3,386,210,000||117,522,000,000|
|Jul 07, 2018||6,668.71||6,863.99||6,579.24||6,856.93||3,961,080,000||114,268,000,000|
|Jul 06, 2018||6,638.69||6,700.94||6,533.55||6,673.50||4,313,960,000||113,741,000,000|
|Jul 05, 2018||6,599.71||6,749.54||6,546.65||6,639.14||4,999,240,000||113,062,000,000|
|Jul 04, 2018||6,550.87||6,771.92||6,450.46||6,597.55||4,176,690,000||112,214,000,000|
|Jul 03, 2018||6,596.66||6,671.37||6,447.75||6,529.59||4,672,310,000||112,989,000,000|
|Jul 02, 2018||6,380.38||6,683.86||6,305.70||6,614.18||4,396,930,000||109,273,000,000|
|Jul 01, 2018||6,411.68||6,432.85||6,289.29||6,385.82||4,788,260,000||109,797,000,000|
|Jun 30, 2018||6,214.22||6,465.51||6,214.22||6,404.00||4,543,860,000||106,405,000,000|
|Jun 29, 2018||5,898.13||6,261.66||5,835.75||6,218.30||3,966,230,000||100,981,000,000|
|Jun 28, 2018||6,153.16||6,170.41||5,873.05||5,903.44||3,467,800,000||105,336,000,000|
|Jun 27, 2018||6,084.40||6,180.00||6,052.85||6,157.13||3,296,220,000||104,149,000,000|
|Jun 26, 2018||6,253.55||6,290.16||6,093.67||6,093.67||3,279,760,000||107,033,000,000|
|Jun 25, 2018||6,171.97||6,327.37||6,119.68||6,249.18||5,500,810,000||105,625,000,000|
|Jun 24, 2018||6,164.28||6,223.78||5,826.41||6,173.23||4,566,910,000||105,480,000,000|
|Jun 21, 2018||6,780.09||6,810.94||6,715.17||6,729.74||3,529,130,000||115,977,000,000|
|Jun 20, 2018||6,770.76||6,821.56||6,611.88||6,776.55||3,888,640,000||115,804,000,000|
|Jun 19, 2018||6,742.39||6,822.50||6,709.92||6,769.94||4,057,030,000||115,306,000,000|
|Jun 18, 2018||6,510.07||6,781.14||6,446.68||6,734.82||4,039,200,000||111,319,000,000|
|Jun 17, 2018||6,545.53||6,589.11||6,499.27||6,499.27||3,104,020,000||111,913,000,000|
|Jun 16, 2018||6,455.45||6,592.49||6,402.29||6,550.16||3,194,170,000||110,359,000,000|
|Jun 15, 2018||6,674.08||6,681.08||6,433.87||6,456.58||3,955,390,000||114,084,000,000|
|Jun 14, 2018||6,342.75||6,707.14||6,334.46||6,675.35||5,138,710,000||108,408,000,000|
|Jun 13, 2018||6,596.88||6,707.14||6,334.46||6,675.35||5,138,710,000||108,408,000,000|
|Jun 12, 2018||6,905.82||6,907.96||6,542.08||6,582.36||4,654,380,000||118,007,000,000|
|Jun 11, 2018||6,799.29||6,910.18||6,706.63||6,906.92||4,745,270,000||116,175,000,000|
|Jun 10, 2018||7,499.55||7,499.55||6,709.07||6,786.02||5,804,840,000||128,128,000,000|
|Jun 09, 2018||7,632.52||7,683.58||7,531.98||7,531.98||3,845,220,000||130,386,000,000|
|Jun 08, 2018||7,685.14||7,698.19||7,558.40||7,624.92||4,227,580,000||131,271,000,000|
|Jun 07, 2018||7,650.82||7,741.27||7,650.82||7,678.24||4,485,800,000||130,671,000,000|
|Jun 06, 2018||7,625.97||7,680.43||7,502.01||7,653.98||4,692,260,000||130,233,000,000|
|Jun 05, 2018||7,500.90||7,643.23||7,397.00||7,633.76||4,961,740,000||128,081,000,000|
|Jun 04, 2018||7,722.53||7,753.82||7,474.04||7,514.47||4,993,170,000||131,847,000,000|
|Jun 03, 2018||7,632.09||7,754.89||7,613.04||7,720.25||4,851,760,000||130,288,000,000|
|Jun 02, 2018||7,536.72||7,695.83||7,497.26||7,643.45||4,939,300,000||128,645,000,000|
|Jun 01, 2018||7,500.70||7,604.73||7,407.34||7,541.45||4,921,460,000||128,014,000,000|
|May 31, 2018||7,406.15||7,608.90||7,361.13||7,494.17||5,127,130,000||126,386,000,000|
|May 30, 2018||7,469.73||7,573.77||7,313.60||7,406.52||4,922,540,000||127,454,000,000|
|May 29, 2018||7,129.46||7,526.42||7,090.68||7,472.59||5,662,660,000||121,636,000,000|
|May 28, 2018||7,371.31||7,419.05||7,100.89||7,135.99||5,040,600,000||125,748,000,000|
|May 27, 2018||7,362.08||7,381.74||7,270.96||7,368.22||4,056,520,000||125,575,000,000|
|May 26, 2018||7,486.48||7,595.16||7,349.12||7,355.88||4,051,540,000||127,682,000,000|
|May 25, 2018||7,592.30||7,659.14||7,392.65||7,480.14||4,867,830,000||129,470,000,000|
|May 24, 2018||7,561.12||7,738.60||7,331.14||7,587.34||6,049,220,000||128,925,000,000|
2017 was an interesting year for Bitcoin. It gained more than 500% in a span of few months, thus outperforming every other conventional investment by a huge margin. For instance, at the start of the year, 1 Bitcoin was valued at roughly around $850-900. In August 2017, the price crossed $4,000 and by mid- December, it was at levels above $16,000 and at one point in time, it almost touched $20,000!
However, this bubble collapsed soon and at the end of the year, 1 BTC was worth roughly $13,780. This extreme volatility took many by surprise and the prime factor driving this was the fear of a regulatory crackdown on Bitcoin. Investors panicked and they sold their BTCs to cash in their profits, thus driving the price down. At the time of writing this article, Bitcoin price is trending at around $7,500.
Some of the factors that have contributed to this tremendous rise are mentioned below:
- Following the crash of markets in 2009, there was a growing distrust among the people with financial institutions. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are meant to function without a regulatory body and given that they are stored digitally as codes, they can be used in all kinds of transactions. Many people found this to be an appealing idea and started investing in Bitcoin.
- Another reason for the surge in Bitcoin price lies in the hype and extensive media coverage that it has been receiving. Shortly after the cryptocurrency recorded its first surge in May 2017, professional and amateurs traders alike rushed in to invest and benefit from it. In fact, many of them are holding on to their Bitcoins without the intention of selling them anytime soon, in the hope that 1 BTC will be worth $50,000 someday. Whether this seems rational or irrational, the truth is that this speculation based move is quite popular in today’s world.
- It is worth mentioning that this also includes those people who invested in Bitcoin solely from the perspective of making a quick buck, without understanding it in all its entirety. Considering that there will be only a limited number of Bitcoins - 21 million to be more precise - the price will go up as the demand increases. Therefore, the prices are truly controlled by the users. As more and more people learn about Bitcoin and begin to invest in it, it is quite likely that it will cause the prices to go higher.
- The launch of Bitcoin Futures Products is another factor that has contributed towards the growth. CBOE Global Markets and CME Group launched Bitcoin on their respective futures exchange, thus improving the legitimacy of the cryptocurrency in Wall Street’s eyes. Furthermore, this move also allows investors to go long or short on Bitcoin.
- Japan has recognised Bitcoin as an official payment method. This led to a massive increase in demand for BTC in Japan, thus contributing to the rise in price. Furthermore, many countries across the world are looking into the idea of virtual currency, cryptocurrency, and blockchain technology. Bitcoin, being a proponent of cryptocurrency, benefitted from these developments.
It is important to remember that Bitcoin is still relatively new compared to all other asset classes. Its high volatility makes even the seasoned investors flinch. There is no predicting how Bitcoin will behave in 2018. Some experts believe that BTC will cross $100,000 by mid-year while others expect the cryptocurrency to touch $50,000 mark by the end of the year. Whatever may be the case, it is advisable to conduct a thorough research and follow the legal compliances before investing.
How to Buy Bitcoin in India?
Before you consider buying Bitcoin in India, it is important to keep a couple of things in mind.
- Bitcoin is not regulated by the Reserve Bank of India.
- The usage of cryptocurrencies and virtual currencies as a medium of payment is not authorised by the RBI, central banks or any other monetary authority in India.
- Bitcoin and every other cryptocurrency out there is subject to high market volatility and legal regulations.
That being said, if you are looking to buy Bitcoin in India, you can do so comfortably at any of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. To list a few, there is Unocoin, Zebpay, Koinex, and Coindelta. In order to successfully make an account on these exchanges, you will need to complete your KYC formalities, which involves uploading the following documents:
- PAN Card
- Passport size photograph
- Address Proof
This process may take anywhere between one-three working days. Once you have made an account, all you have to do is transfer funds to the account through RTGS/NEFT/IMPS. You are now all set to buy Bitcoin in India.
It is important to realise that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are decentrally stored and maintained in their respective public-ledger or blockchain. To access the cryptocurrency, you need a private key (like a security code) and a public key (like an account number), both of which are stored in the wallet. Therefore, a cryptocurrency wallet essentially serves the purpose of storing, sending, and receiving digital currency through a combination of public keys and private keys.
You can store this data in any of the five varieties of wallets:
- Desktop - These wallets are downloaded and installed on a computer, and can only be accessed only through the system on which they are downloaded. Theoretically, they offer the highest level of security but if the system is hacked or infected with virus, then you stand to lose your precious Bitcoin. Copay, Bitcoin Core, Exodus, Electrum, and Armory are some of the leading Bitcoin desktop wallets.
- Mobile - These wallets run on mobile applications and are far more convenient to access.
- Online - Online Bitcoin wallets run on cloud servers and as a result, your private keys and public keys are stored online, controlled by a third party. While they are easy to access, they are far more vulnerable to hacking attacks and theft.
- Hardware - In this case, your keys are stored offline in a USB-like device, making it the most secure option out there. To perform a transaction, simply plug in the device to an internet enabled computer, enter the PIN code and send currency. Ledger Wallet is one of the most popular hardware wallets out there.
- Paper - Paper wallets offer a high degree of security. The idea here is to have a physical copy (or a printout) of public and private keys in the form of QR code and the usual alphanumeric style. To perform a transaction, you can either scan the QR code and manually enter the keys.
By design, ‘offline’ wallets in the hardware and paper category are most secure, since they are immune to hacking attacks and malicious virus. However, remember to keep a backup of these codes in a safe place.
Bitcoin Price in India
The price of Bitcoin in India has witnessed a lot of volatility over the course of last few months. While different cryptocurrency exchanges have different prices, the general behaviour of the prices has remained the same throughout all the platforms. The reason why many exchanges have different prices is owing to the profit margin (spread) the exchanges have over Bitcoin, and it is fair to say that many of these exchanges have exorbitant spreads.
- The first three months of 2018 have been disastrous for the cryptocurrency space, and Bitcoin, being the trendsetter and the most popular cryptocurrency out there, is among the worst-affected. On January 1, 1 Bitcoin was worth roughly $13,500 while on April 1, the same was close to $6,600. This translates into a staggering 50% loss in value, in just three months. This was mainly because of the regulatory crackdown on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Furthermore, the banning of cryptocurrency and ICO ads by Twitter, Facebook, and Google didn’t do much to boost investors confidence.
- Prior to this ‘bubble burst’, the cryptocurrency enjoyed a meteoric rise in value, moving from $1,000 in May 2017 to $19,000 in mid-December. While a host of factors have contributed to this exponential rise, the most important one is undoubtedly the opportunity to make a quick buck.
- Researches at ETH Zurich published a paper dated March 16, which stated that Bitcoin is substantially overvalued. This suggests that volatility in its price will continue for the months to come. The paper also predicted that Bitcoin’s market value will not be more than $77 billion by the end of the year.
- Much of 2018 has been marked by a ‘crash’ of sorts in the cryptocurrency space. As of late October 2018, the market capitalisation of Bitcoin is a little over $109 billion - almost one-third of the market cap it enjoyed during its peak in December 2017. The digital coin has been in a state of constant decline and volatility for most of the year.
- In March, 1 BTC was seen trading at around $10,000 - $11,000 while the same, by early April, had lost as much as 40% to touch the $6,000 mark. Over the course of April, the prices rose slightly once again, only to lose those gains eventually over the subsequent months. Bitcoin endured a very similar run in the months of July, August, and September as well, with the currency trying to find some stability close to the $7,000 mark.
- In these months, the Bitcoin’s average 24 hour volume hasn’t been more than $7 billion - half of what it was during its record-breaking weeks.
- Bitcoin has also been related widely with climate change. Bitcoin mining consumes a lot of energy and in 2017 alone, it emitted 69 million metric tonnes of CO2. Being a decentralised cryptocurrency, there is no regulation in place here and therefore, anyone can become a miner. It also means that it is difficult to implement emission standards in the Bitcoin space. According to a report published in the Nature Climate Journal, Bitcoin, all by itself, can push worldwide temperatures above the 2 degree Celsius limit by 2034.
1 Bitcoin to USD
1 Bitcoin, as of early April 2018, is worth approximately $7,500.
BankBazaar urges its readers to take extreme caution before trading, mining or investing in virtual currencies. BankBazaar does not endorse cryptocurrencies or making investments in cryptocurrencies in any manner. Our only goal is to provide information to our visitors about cryptocurrencies. We advise our readers to consider investing in Mutual Funds, Fixed Deposit, ULIPs and other legally recognised investment avenues rather than risking their capital on extremely volatile and unregulated assets like cryptocurrencies.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued a Press Release on December 24, 2013, cautioning users, holders and traders of virtual currencies including Bitcoins regarding the potential economic, financial, operational, legal, customer protection and security related risks associated in dealing with virtual currencies. RBI has also clarified vide press release dated February 1, 2017 that it has not given any licence/authorisation to any entity/company to operate such schemes or deal with Bitcoin or any VC.
The Ministry of Finance issued a statement on December 29, 2017 stating that virtual currencies are not legal tender. Mr. Arun Jaitley in his budget speech on February 1, 2018 has clearly stated that the Government does not consider cryptocurrencies legal tender or coin.
BankBazaar excludes any warranties (whether expressed or implied), as to the quality, accuracy, efficacy and completeness on any of the contents / information displayed on its website on cryptocurrencies, including but not limited to any comments, feedback and advertisements contained therein.