The COVID-19 pandemic dominated the news in 2020, affecting myriad sectors — health, economics, social justice, politics and trade, as well as the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry. As country after country locked down to halt the virus’s spread, governments seized upon stimulus payments to preserve economic life.
While necessary, these measures raised the specter of global inflation. This, in turn, pushed many traditional investors and institutions to take a new look at cryptocurrencies as an alternate store of value, especially Bitcoin (BTC), the top crypto. Following a March 11 dip, BTC went on a tear, reaching record levels by year end. With that as a backdrop, here are 2020’s top 10 stories of the crypto and blockchain world.
Bitcoin soars to record heights
The world’s oldest and most widely held cryptocurrency shattered price records and then some in 2020. Now, at the end of the year, Bitcoin’s market cap is standing at about $500 billion — surpassing Visa and Berkshire Hathaway — and its price on spot markets continues to inch toward $30,000.
The pre-rally record high of $19,850 was set in December 2017 by retail traders in Asia (many of which just discovering cryptocurrencies) driving the price, but this year, it was by mature investors continuously purchasing increments of Bitcoin and often holding it off-chain as a long-term investment, as the New York Times noted.
“We’re seeing fresh stories about institutional crypto adoption on almost a daily basis at this point,” Bitcoin Depot CEO Brandon Mintz told Cointelegraph…