Bitcoin seen at $50000 in 2018 as volatility persists

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Crypto-currency experts are punting bitcoin prices to reach $50 000 in 2018, betting on the price volatility to sustain interest and value in the emerging asset amid a rush to offer bitcoin futures by brokers across the world.

Arthur Hayes, the chief executive officer and co-founder of BitMEX said in an interview with Bloomberg this week https://www.bloomberg.com/news/audio/2017-12-05/bitcoin-could-rise-to-50-000-in-2018 that bitcoin price volatility was a positive attraction for the crypto currency.

“The volatility in my view is a positive because it generates news, it gets more people involved and the more volatile it is the valuable,” said Hayes.

Global Bitcoin prices on Thursday whizzed past the $16000 mark while in Zimbabwe the crypto-currency was trading at a price of about $26000 owing to a liquidity and forex crunch in the southern African country.

Some brokers have been lining up Bitcoin futures as the attractiveness of crypto-currency as an emerging asset class gains momentum. However, South Korea’s primary financial regulator and watchdog has securities firms from launching bitcoin futures contracts.

Hayes said Bitcoin futures traders would be “fully hedged” as prices continue to rise although he cautioned that any asset class that “has gone 12x in one year could possibly be very dangerous” owing to speculation.

“It is actually speculative. Anyone who claims this is not risky is fooling themselves. You have an asset that has gone from nothing to close to $200 billion in under 10 years. I would caution anyone getting into this asset to not put any more money than you can afford to lose,” said Hayes.

He said brokers punting Bitcoin futures were merely keen “to make fees” as Bitcoin is the “only asset class that has volatility”.

“Any asset class that has volatility in excess of 10 to 20 percent a day is something that has to be traded. I think in 2018 bitcoin will go up another 5x and my target is $50 000 for bitcoin.”

As the current bubble in Bitcoin prices continues, concerns have emerged over money laundering and regulation of trade but Hayes is not too worried about this. He says Bitcoin transactions are already heavily regulated and cites Know Your Customer requirements by Bitcoin exchanges.

ETX senior analyst, Neil Wilson, told Business Insider that the Bitcoin price action continues to be “exceptional and something that is without any parallels”. He was not sure when this bubbler will collapse http://uk.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-price-tops-15000-on-december-7-2017-12

“The Traditional banking laws are already in effect when you want to get into the system. (On Money laundering) no I am not worried because you are already self-certifying yourself with the exchange in terms of the source of funds and identification so similar to opening a bank account you go through the same process when opening a bitcoin account,” said Hayes.

  1. Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Tawanda Karombo is a tech and finance journalist focusing on Sub Saharan Africa and other regions. He has over 10 years experience specializing in ICT, telecoms, tech-finance, business and economic reporting and can be contacted directly on [email protected]