Finally, the most awaited event in the crypto industry of this year has happened: Bitcoin has halved! But what does the Bitcoin halving mean for the general market and crypto community?
Bitcoin’s network is programmed to half every four years, and in 2020, at 19:23 UTC on May 11, the coin has undergone its third halving. This means that the mining reward for which miners compete has been reduced from 12.5 bitcoin per block to 6.25 units. In the first halving, Bitcoin went from 25 to 50 bitcoin per block in November 2012, and in the second halving in July 2016 to 12.5 units.
The halving event was triggered at the 630,000th block of the coin’s blockchain, which marks one of the biggest changes since the coin was launched in 2009.
In anticipation of the event, seven days prior to the halving, the mining difficulty adjustment reached a new record high of 121 exahashes per second (EH/s), surpassing the past all-time high of 118 EH/s, pointed out data from mining pool Poolin.
The first block from the first 6.25-bitcoin-per-block batch was mined by Antpool, a Chinese mining pool that is the fourth-largest according to total computing power.
The last block before the halving was mined by F2Pool, and in the 629,999th block (the last before the halving), it decided to embed a message in the transaction which was a reference to the current financial crisis: “NYTimes 09/Apr/2020 With $2.3T Injection, Fed’s Plan Far Exceeds 2008 Rescue.”
The New York Times headline written by Jeanna Smialek and Peter Eavis compares the current financial crisis to the 2008 economic fall. The message is a tribute to Satoshi Nakamoto’s own message of “brink of a second bailout,” which he inserted in the 2009 genesis block of the chain.
The final Bitcoin block with a subsidy of 12.5 BTC was mined by @f2pool_official and contained the following message in its coinbase transaction:
🐟NYTimes 09/Apr/2020 With $2.3T Injection, Fed's Plan Far Exceeds 2008 Rescuehttps://t.co/9dtTrC8YH6
— Jameson Lopp (@lopp) May 11, 2020
Prior to the 2008 financial crisis, government bailouts were an unknown term for Americans. But then, the housing market crashed, stock prices hit new lows, and unemployment rates went through the roof. Back then, the Fed injected $500 billion worth of emergency lending programs to keep the economy afloat.
Now in 2020, the coronavirus pandemic triggered an even worse financial crisis, with the Fed proposing a $2.3 trillion bailout.
This lets us wonder what message Bitcoin will have engraved in the last block in the 2024 halving.
The speculations and analysis for Bitcoin’s price are by the thousands, with people arguing back and forth that BTC will soar to new heights. At the time of writing, Bitcoin is trading at $8.739,94, with an increase of 1,06% in the past 24 hours, according to CoinMarketCap data.
Featured image: OspreyFX