As the price of Bitcoin increases, the excitement of industry experts and speculators has increased considerably. With sentiment surrounding the asset as its highest in years, it appears that everyone is trying to get their hands on it. Earlier this week, the Winning Poker Network (WPN), an online network for gambling sites, explained that it had seen a rise in demands for Bitcoin-based payouts.
Everyone Wants Some BTC
In an interview with Bloomberg, WPN chief executive Phil Nagy explained that up to 95 percent of its payouts are now in Bitcoin. Nagy explained that users were excited about Bitcoin’s price rally and are now demanding more payments in BTC.
The company had been supporting cryptocurrencies since 2014, according to the WPN boss. But as demand increases, WPN has been forced to buy more.
Nagy estimated that WPN was issuing over $100 million in BTC payouts monthly before Bitcoin’s recent bullish run. That number amounted to about 60 percent of the network’s transactions. With the asset now surging, the firm could be on track to cross $160 million in monthly payouts.
The growth in demand is beyond just poker players, oddly. With Bitcoin riding a three-year high, more people have become conscious of the asset and are purchasing. Following Bitcoin’s three-year high on November 18, crypto analytics provider Glassnode reported a substantial spike in the number of new Bitcoin addresses.
As the company explained, the number of new BTC addresses per hour clocked almost 25,000 for the first time since January 2018. Recall that this was the month following Bitcoin’s 19,700 all-time high. It’s worth noting that this spike is still a bit off from the highs of January 2018. For comparison purposes, the all-time high for new BTC addresses registered was December 21. 2017, with over 600,000 addresses in a day.
Comparing With the 2017 Bull Run
Bitcoin has proved its potential on several fronts this year – whether as a hedge against inflation or as a speculative bet. With the leading cryptocurrency up over 300 percent since January, there could be a new all-time high before the year ends.
Like in 2017, FOMO along with renewed optimism in BTC is driving its price upwards. Investors are also antsy about a repeat of the 2017 bubble, but some analysts believe this is different. Co-founder of statistics resource CoinMetrics Nic Carter highlighted nine charts disputing fears of a retraction. From wallet balances with over $10 in them to Bitcoin spot prices in fiat currencies and institutional investment levels, all metrics showed a mature market with robust performances.
Comparing it to the 2017 bull run, Carter explained in his blog post:
“To sum up, today’s market is far more mature, more financialized, more surveilled, more orderly, more restrained, less reflexive, more capital-efficient, and more liquid than the market that powered the prior bull run in 2017.”