While 2017 successfully popularized bitcoin, altcoins and initial coin offerings (ICOs) due to the surge of the prices of all cryptoassets, 2018 brought back the proverbial rocket ship to earth via stricter regulations and blanket bans.
With more and more regulators looking to implement amenable policies for the cryptospace, coupled with the impending entrance of more institutional investors, 2019 may be another excellent year for cryptos and blockchain technology, reported the TheStreet on January 2, 2019.
The Highs and Lows of 2018
Following the impressive moonshot of bitcoin and other cryptoassets in late 2017, plus the launch of bitcoin futures contracts by the CME and CBOE, many market participants were optimistic that the party would continue in 2018.
The opposite was the case, however, as regulators in different jurisdictions increased oversight for their blockchain and crypto industry, while the cash-settled bitcoin futures contracts from the stables of CME and CBOE gave bitcoin pessimists the chance to bet against the flagship digital asset, thereby feeding the crash of bitcoin from $20,000 down to just above $3,000.
Interestingly, while retail investors were busy mourning their dead bitcoins, institutional investors were seriously buying the dip, with heavyweights in the traditional finance ecosystem including the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), BlackRock, and a host of others announcing plans to join the cryptocurrency bandwagon.
2019 the Big Year for Cryptos?
If all goes as planned, 2019 is expected to usher in good tidings for the burgeoning digital assets world, concerning friendly regulations, institutional investments, and other developments.
In December 2018, BTCManager informed that the SEC had pushed back its decision regarding the VanEck SolidX Bitcoin ETF application to February 2019.
Importantly, earlier in November, the Bakkt team announced that the much-anticipated launch of its physically backed bitcoin futures contracts slated for December 2018 had been postponed to January 24, 2019, to afford them enough time to “get all the pieces in place.”
On the regulatory front, 2019 also promises to be fair to digital assets as more and more financial watchdogs are now looking to study and understand the DLT industry extensively to create robust policies that can protect consumers, curb bad actors, and foster innovation at the same time.
Regarding the now controversial status of ICOs, it is expected that more companies will turn to security token offerings (STOs) and stablecoins could help contribute to the growth of the cryptosphere this year.