Three Stories that Shaped Cryptocurrency in 2019


As the year, and indeed the decade draws to a close, Bitcoin and cryptocurrency have a chance to recount what has happened in the last 365 days. This year comes after 10years of Bitcoin’s existence, and it was a formative one in the sense of mass adoption. 

If there was one overarching theme for some of the biggest stories in cryptocurrency, it would be mainstream adoption, and especially that of the bigger institutions. Cryptocurrency growth and appreciation saw institutions like Facebook, and the New York Stock Exchange taking an active interest. 

From Bakkt to Libra, Bitcoin and the adoption of cryptocurrencies had a busy year. But more so, the growth of Bitcoin and its steady proliferation is also a story worth taking note of. 

Limp Libra

In the Summer of this year, tension and anticipation were growing as the rumoured announcement that Facebook would launch a cryptocurrency came to a crescendo. Facebook announced Libra, and many, although sceptical of the social media giant, still saw it as a huge stepping stone in adoption for cryptocurrency. 

Of course, the fanfare for Libra was short-lived as regulators across the globe came down heavily on the Facebook stablecoin idea. From the US to Europe, as well as India and China, there was very little buy-in and this left Libra licking its wounds and unsure if it would ever come to fruition. 

Big for Bakkt

In terms of institutional adoption and money flooding into Bitcoin, Bakt was heralded as the answer. When the New York Stock Exchange’s ICE managed to get all the regulatory clearance for physically-settled Bitcoin futures contracts, there was much hope and promise for big institutional investment. 

However, Bakkt also had a bit of a limp start. The trading volume was quite woeful in regards to expectations, and only recently started picking up speed – but probably still below par. Regardless of Bakkt’s performance though, it is a new and exciting avenue to bring Bitcoin into the mainstream and played an important role in the proliferation of the coin in institutional investment. 

The Spring without the Summer

Bitcoin’s price is probably the most-watched and wondered about thing in the entire cryptocurrency ecosystem. When 2018 ended, and it ended on a sour note of a long-running bear market, many wondered what the future heald going into 2019. 

Then, in the spring, coincidently, Bitcoin’s price started to blossom. The price of the coin started to climb from the doldrums of its $3,000 price tag all the way up to $14,000 at a stage. Cryptocurrency spring sprung… but no summer really bloomed. 

The price of Bitcoin remains volatile and hard to judge or predict. It has been down, and up, and down again this year, but has not been volatile enough – that is to say, it has not approached figures last seen in December 2017, for people to get really excited about the movements. 

Darryn Pollock
Darryn has been interested in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space since he heard about Bitcoin in 2015. He then decided to use his journalism degree to report on this fascinating fintech space in 2016, and has not looked back since.

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