Bitcoin 2019 Comeback 2.0: The Onset of the Retail Investor

A lot of naysayers that took to the stage to share with us “how right they were” when bitcoin started dropping, probably feel incredibly perplexed and certainly a little awkward right now. Just hours after Forbes had announced the bitcoin bubble burst and economist Nouriel Roubini had tweeted his criticism about cryptocurrencies, there was a complete reversal. In the earlier hours of the day (3rd of July, 2019) Bitcoin made a bullish jump of over 20% from as low as $9,688 to a local high of $11,525. In an analysis, BTC trader Josh Rager said he was eyeing a potential zone around $11,760, noting that the recovery now makes bitcoin price look “extremely bullish” again. Other major cyrptocurrencies experienced a similar rise in their value, for example, Ethereum rose by 7.6%. But why?

In a previous article, in mid-to-late June, it was noted that the bitcoin surge at the time was due to corporations taking a more serious interest in the world of cryptocurrency and blockchain. Especially since Apple’s announcement on crypto support and even more so Facebook’s whitepaper release (Libra), a lot of attention in the corporate/institutional world had been directed towards crypto. Proponents of bitcoin had, at the time, started making overly-optimistic predictions citing ranges of $60,000 to $100,000 – and insisted that the real boom was yet to come, as the bitcoin fad was yet to catch the eye of the public investor.

Now, analysts and experts in the field are saying that the recent dramatic, unexpected surge was an indication that the retail investors have started entering the market. Google searches for “bitcoin” are a widely-used metric for tracking the general public’s interest in the cryptocurrency.

Based on the chart above, which represents the Google searches for “buy bitcoin” worldwide within the last 12 months, depicts a sharp rise, especially towards the end of June. Moreover, the latest monthly bitcoin price report from digital asset research firm Delphi Digital makes the case that retail investor enthusiasm has returned to the crypto asset market.

Bitcoin price vs worldwide "bitcoin" Google searches.

Delphi Digital’s report makes note that June was bitcoin’s fifth straight month of positive returns, which is the longest streak in nearly two years. It also confirms that recent growth is mainly due to institutions becoming more comfortable and intrigued with bitcoin (and crypto-tech in general) as the potential for growth of this asset market is much larger than that of any of the traditional assets. However, it is clear to state that the market is still very much retail investor driven.

If any of the earlier predictions hold true, Bitcoin is (probably) in for a continued growth – and hopefully a more stable one with the firmer stance taken by the institutional investors. How far can the public market take bitcoin? With the recent trend swings, it is hard to make a certain prediction. After all, Bitcoin is still as volatile as ever, and so yet again the question remains. How will you choose to invest?



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