The value of cryptocurrency transactions is forecast to surpass $1 trillion this year, which is 15 times the level reached in 2016.
That’s according to a new study from Juniper Research called The Future of Blockchain: Key Vertical Opportunities & Deployment Strategies 2017-2022. In a press release highlighting results of the report, Juniper found transaction values in the first half of this year surpassed $325 billion, thanks in part to a huge jump in the price of Ethereum, which accounted for two-thirds of cryptocurrency transaction values at the time. Currently, cryptocurrency is seeing average daily trades that are well in excess of $2 billion. If the current levels are maintained, the daily trades could surpass $100 billion in transactions in 2017 alone, Juniper said.
In the case of bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency, since the start of this year prices have increased from roughly $1,000 to $4,000. A second planned fork in November could split the bitcoin community and result in a decrease in the value of the coins, Juniper said. “There is no resolution in sight to the continuing and fundamental disagreements between many Bitcoin miners and Bitcoin Core developers over the future of the cryptocurrency. This in turn could lead to uncertainty about Bitcoin’s future and downward pressure on its valuation,” said research author Dr. Windsor Holden in a release focusing on the research.
Over the weekend bitcoin hit $5,000 late Friday (Sept. 1) but then retreated 5 percent in late trading, according to news from Fortune. At the beginning of the year, the possibility of bitcoin hitting $5,000 per coin was laughable, but with the price rising higher all year, it suddenly became a reality, albeit a brief one. There was no one reason for bitcoin to jump late last week, although Fortune speculated it is more of the same: speculation because of the popularity of cryptocurrency. Other reasons for the uptick according to Fortune include new financial products that are creating a lot of liquidity, increases in trading in Asian markets and institutional investors taking the cryptocurrency craze seriously.