It is expected that the 18th million Bitcoin will be mined today, which is another important milestone as it means that there are only three million coins left that can be circulated into the market. Those three million coins will also get a lot harder to mine, starting in May 2020 when the reward is cut in half.
Bitcoin’s mining hash rate – which is the amount of computing power being used to secure, and mine, the Bitcoin blockchain, has been steadily climbing through the whole of 2019 to date. In fact, the difficulty level of the mining algorithm has not dropped more than a mere 1.18 percent.
This intense mining effort means that in less than six months, 1 million Bitcoin have been added to the circulating supply – that equates to nearly $8 billion at current prices. There have been a number of theories as to why the Bitcoin mining hash rate has remained on a constant uptrend, but a lot may have to do with the impending mining reward cut.
The next Bitcoin halving will take place in May 2020 where the reward of mining a block will go from 12.5 BTC to half that, at 6.25 BTC. This has major implications for miners, as they will be earning half the money for arguably more work – as difficulty increases.
However, it also has bigger implications for the market in terms of a macroeconomic context. This sudden cut in supply will no doubt cause the demand for the coin to rise sharply, with an increase in demand, there will be a price surge expected as well.
This has been noted by Bitcoin bull Anthony Pompliano who is trying to get the hashtag #3millionleft trending to point out how limited the remaining supply of Bitcoin is. Because Bitcoin is a limited supply – od 21 million – and its mining reward halving system is strongly anti-inflationary, it is important to note how few coins are left to enter circulation.
What is even more important to note, however, is that the last coin will only be mined in more than 100 years. Currently, it is predicted to be in the year 2140.