Bitcoin price continues to face rather high selling pressure on Thursday but, remarkably, the bears have been staved off in European trading markets, with a low registering only at USD 7,918, before now recovering to just above USD 8,000 (CoinDesk).

A lot of long traders would surely have been breathing sighs of relief when that happened, but the bad news for them is after clawing back to USD 8,100, familiar patterns of resistance froze buyers and now it is anyone’s game while we wait for North America to wake up properly.

Altcoins are having a crazy day as well, with Monero seemingly coming out from nowhere to post 13% gains over yesterday, causing prices and speculation to peak at over USD 60. Dogecoin as well, perhaps due to some unexpected major listing for the memecoin, also posted 13% gains overnight after climbing up slowly in the past week. In the Top 30, XEM was the other double-digit gainer just above 10%, but other alts like Ripple (6%), XLM (4.7%) and QTUM (4.9%) are gearing up for possible runs to the top.

All of this is now happening against the backdrop of a rather important milestone for Bitcoin, for whom analysts are expecting will see its 18 millionth Bitcoin being mined tomorrow, on Friday, 18 October 2019.

This landmark number is an important one, because this now means that with Bitcoin’s fixed supply of 21 million coins, only 3 million coins are left now to mine in the entire Bitcoin supply (according to BitcoinBlockHalf statistics). Commentators have long been observing these numbers, but it was Morgan Creek Digital Assets co-founder who is now stirring up the Twittersphere with his comments.

He calls for a #3MillionLeft hashtag trend around the world to spread the word about Bitcoin. Probably not very surprising from the man who has publicly admitted on CNBC that he has put more than half of his total net worth into Bitcoin.

The whole issue in play here, and why Bitcoiners are bullish about this landmark figure, is all about Bitcoin’s scarcity. As fewer coins are given out as rewards to miners helping to secure Bitcoin’s blockchain, with time, there will be fewer and fewer coins distributed as newly-minted ones.

And, because Bitcoin’s code will halve the rewards at a fixed interval of 210,000 blocks, this means that roughly every four years (each block is timed to an average of 10 minutes), the miner reward in new Bitcoin is halved. Currently, every new block found by a miner rewards 12.5 BTC.

According to the current rate of blocks, it is estimated that the next halving will occur some time in mid May 2020. After this, for the next four years, miners will only earn 6.25 BTC every new block.

So will price of Bitcoin be pushed up higher due to a perceived scarcity coming up to halving? Or has all that already been priced in, as some believe? Or will people simply point to the divisibility of Bitcoin and simply reframe their thinking into fractions of Bitcoin? Time will, as we like to say here, tell, but now that less than 15% of Bitcoin supply remains to be mined, it would appear that the fight to own whole units of Bitcoin has just become tougher.

Amid the positive sentiment of such a milestone for Bitcoin, there is now a surprise coming together between two financial corporate giants: leading crypto exchange Binance and digital payment provider Alipay.

According to Forbes, the two China-origin companies are now clashing over Binance’s proposed new peer-to-peer trading platform which it has said it hoped to bring in a new surge of Chinese Bitcoin investors.

The new platform, launched in early October for China, was touted as an easy new tool that would allow 1.4 billion Chinese people to buy Bitcoin easily. China has banned all forms of crypto exchanges, and the trading of Chinese yuan for Bitcoin, so the news could have been perceived as a new avenue for Chinese bitcoin wannabe investors starved off traditional purchase routes.

We already published Alipay’s instant rebuttal to that announcement on Twitter, warning its 900 million users that it will immediately stop bitcoin transactions.

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao today, however, notes that his platform has successfully launched and attracted a lot of interest. He declared:

“In the first 24 hours since launching, the service volume was USD1.5 million in volume. Considering that all trades are done manually, including off-platform fiat transfers, this is quite an achievement. This also demonstrates the strong demand for such a product.”

Chinese defiance? Lots more to come, we hope!

 

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