The year 2017 is considered by many as the year of the Bitcoin, mainly because of the historic events that happened for the benefit of the most valuable cryptocurrency today. In 2017, Bitcoin’s price increased more than 1300%, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) filed for two Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund (ETF), and the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) introduced the first-ever futures market for Bitcoin. Hence, Bitcoin became too valuable to ignore, and with its growing emergence, the number of businesses who are accepting Bitcoins increased. Let’s review the data behind the Bitcoin’s success in 2017.
First quarter of 2017 – slight growth at 5.5 percent
Based on available data from Coinmap.org, there were a total of 8,207 physical stores who accepted Bitcoin as a payment method as of January 3, 2017. Then before the first quarter of 2017 ends, the number increased slightly at a total of 8,665 stores, which recorded a 5.58% increase in businesses accepting Bitcoin as payment.
Bitcoin price – steady growth at 7 percent
On January 1, 2017, the price of Bitcoin was around $979, which is around 13 times less than its price today at $13,390. At the end of first quarter, the price of Bitcoin reached the $1,000 mark, which recorded a 6.9% increase.
Second quarter – stable growth at 5 percent
At the start of the second quarter of 2017, a total of 8,682 businesses accepted BTCs, and near the end of the quarter, the total number rose to 9,143 businesses, with 461 new stores representing a 5.3% increase.
Bitcoin price – robust at 135 percent
At the beginning of second quarter, the price of Bitcoin was recorded at $1,069, but it increased to 135% within the quarter hitting $2,519.27 or an added $1,449.49 to BTC price in the market.
Hence, the first half of 2017 saw a 147 percent price increase and 11% increase in business acceptance.
Third quarter – cryptomania starts at 8.5 percent growth
On July 4, 2017, a total of 9,176 businesses accepted BTCs for their goods and services, and by the end of the third quarter, this number increased by 796 businesses or a total of 9,972 businesses that represent an increase of 8.67%.
Bitcoin price – still robust at 74 percent
On the first day of the third quarter, the price of Bitcoin was at $2,458.14 and a few days before the quarter ends, BTC price reached $4,286.64. For the whole Q3, BTC price increased by $1,828 or around 74% increase in value.
The Bitcoin buzz
In the third quarter of 2017, we started to see the BTC price and the volume of businesses who are accepting Bitcoins increase at a higher rate compared to the previous quarters. An increase in price represents a rising demand, and a rising demand must not be a surprise for the Bitcoin market considering the events, which took place in the third quarter.
The mainstream media started to run stories about the skyrocketing returns that Bitcoin investors received from their ventures in cryptocurrency. Bitcoin started to receive global media coverage, and Bitcoin gradually started to be presented in a more positive image contrary to its image before as a tool for illegal drug purchases and money laundering. In addition, when BTC recorded an all-time high, the public went into a frenzy, which influenced a lot of people who think that they are missing out on larger returns to invest in the BTC, so they will also get a chance for the unprecedented yield.
Fourth quarter – more businesses accepting BTCs at 12 percent
In the first week of October, a total of 10,040 firms accepted Bitcoin payments, and by December, a total of 11,291 businesses accepted Bitcoins, which represent a 12.4% increase in the last quarter of 2017.
Bitcoin price – skyrocket at 224 percent
The fourth quarter experienced the biggest increase in businesses accepting Bitcoins with an increase of 1,251 physical stores. At the start of the fourth quarter, the price of Bitcoin hit a $4,317.24, and on 17th of December, BTC price recorded an all-time high of $20,000, but the market corrected the price and fell int $14,000. Nevertheless, the price of Bitcoin increased at 224% within the quarter.
In the 2nd half of 2017, the number of businesses, which accepted BTC as a payment increased by 23% or a total of 2,115 businesses establishments. The number of businesses accepting Bitcoins increased at an average of 10.57 % per quarter or almost double the average quarterly increase in establishments for the first and second quarter of 2017.
At the start of 2017, the price of Bitcoin was only $979.53, and by December, its price was around $14,000 or an increase of 1,329%, which is an increase of more than $13,000 in general.
Bitcoin adoption and the cryptomania
There is a possibility that the price of Bitcoin recently dropped because investors who were new to the Bitcoin market were not fully aware that digital currencies carry higher risk compared to NYSE or NASDAQ. As the price of Bitcoin significantly dropped, the market started to weed out the weak investors as well as many investors who were new to investing panicked and disposed of their Bitcoin holdings.
Investors who stayed in the market fully understand the risks and the rewards in cryptocurrency trading, which is described as a roller-coaster ride. The north journey is really a skyrocket but the southbound can be scary that you may think that you are going to crash down the ground.
Data reveals that the price of Bitcoin is correlated with the number of brick and mortar stores who are willing to accept Bitcoin as a payment method. Based on a Pearson Correlation coefficient, its score is 0.7994, which means that the increase in the price of Bitcoin will also equal to the increase in the number of businesses accepting BTCs.
However, many experts believe that the era of Bitcoin is just beginning. Many call it cryptomania, which could also send up soon.
Even though the interest in virtual tokens increased at a fast pace, the market cap of all virtual assets is now at $560,0,456,007,371, which is still under the market capitalization of NYSE at around $19.6 Trillion. The year 2017 was a great year for Bitcoin as very few assets could boast a return of 1300% in a year.
Institutional investors also started integrating Bitcoins into their digital assets, mainly investing the options into the platforms for their customers. However, the support from the biggest institutional investors is not yet a factor to consider at this early stage. Yet it is a fact that these investors are now looking to enter the game as early as 2018 with several ETF Bitcoins that they are pushing. Moreover, retail investors, as well as the general public, can start learning more about cryptocurrencies and are now becoming more interested in adding the digital assets into their investment portfolio.
There is a growing interest in the wide use of Blockchain technology, particularly with Bitcoin, which was the original user of the Blockchain platform. But at the current set of things, with Bitcoin now being discussed by mainstream media, in the halls of government offices, in university classrooms, and even the local supermarket, it can be safe to say that cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin, is now on a bullish market.