As 2023 comes to an end, it is time to look forward to what the market has in store for us in the new year. Experts have already shared their top crypto predictions for 2024. Let’s take a look at the top five developments and how they might impact the crypto sector moving forward.
1. Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval is Imminent
We can start with the least risky prediction for 2024, which is that a Bitcoin-focused exchange-traded fund (ETF) will be approved for the US spot market.
Currently, there are over a dozen proposals under review at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) from several crypto and traditional finance firms, including Wall Street giants BlackRock, Fidelity, and Franklin Templeton.
The odds of the product being listed in the markets are high. Additionally, a spot Bitcoin ETF would offer more legitimacy for the cryptocurrency in the eyes of mainstream retail and institutional investors. It will also push for more transparency and disclosures, and instigate a conversation on the use of crypto tokens for general purposes like payments.
Experts argue that regardless of which firm receives the SEC’s permission first, the ETF will be a positive development for the crypto industry. Reports also suggest that an approval in the US would be followed up by other global markets.
2. Bitcoin Will Top $60,000
While many analysts outlandishly predict that Bitcoin (BTC) will top $500,000 next year on the back of a spot BTC ETF approval, a more conservative estimate is that the leading cryptocurrency is more likely to top $60,000 in 2024.
Although the figure is still below Bitcoin’s all-time high of $69,000 from November 2021, it would signify a healthy recovery for the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
As more institutional players enter the market, BTC will turn into the asset of choice for retail and non-traditional investors next year.
Venture capitalist Tim Draper said in an interview with Coin Bureau that he expects Bitcoin to go past a quarter of a million dollars in valuation. Crypto expert ‘The Bitcoin Therapist’ also shared the opinion, stating in an X post that with all the major developments that are happening, “it’s hard to imagine Bitcoin under $250,000”.
He also added that the current period is the best time to purchase Bitcoin.
3. Ethereum Will Surge
Ether (ETH) is the most valuable cryptocurrency after Bitcoin (BTC), while its parent blockchain Ethereum is the largest decentralized finance (DeFi) network in the world. According to Ryan Rasmussen, a researcher at digital asset management firm Bitwise, in 2024, Ethereum will rake in profits that will be more than twice its current revenue.
He noted that Ethereum revenues will increase by 2.5x to $5 billion a year as more users flock in to use decentralized applications (DApps) on the blockchain. In 2023, users paid a total of $2.3 billion in fees just to use Ethereum, and this number is expected to rise by at least 2x in 2024, making Ethereum one of the fastest-growing large-scale tech platforms in the world, added Rasmussen in his X post.
4. Binance Will Lose its No.1 Position For Crypto Trading
Binance, which is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume, saw its number boost up following the collapse of Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX exchange in November 2022.
However, according to asset management giant VanEck’s predictions, 2024 will be a bearish year for Binance as the exchange will lose its #1 position for spot trading to rivals Coinbase, OKX, ByBit, and Bitget.
Binance has gone through a rough patch this year, especially in the US. At the beginning of 2023, the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) asked stablecoin issuer Paxos to stop minting Binance’s native dollar-denominated crypto token Binance USD (BUSD).
BUSD was once the third-largest stablecoin in the market and the most traded crypto on Binance. Since then, the token has been delisted from Binance and completely phased out. The company even sold its reserve assets for BUSD to another firm.
This was followed by lawsuits from the SEC in June, alleging that Binance had indulged in selling unregistered securities to customers. The regulator has taken enforcement actions against crypto firms as it seeks to bring cryptocurrencies under its watch. Binance has since denied all the allegations, asking the US government to regulate crypto as a bespoke digital asset class.
The biggest blow to Binance came in November when the company agreed to pay a $4 billion fine to the US Department of Justice in exchange for settling all criminal investigations against it. Binance US, the crypto giant’s American subsidiary, which is supposed to function as a completely separate entity, was working alongside its parent company and allegedly violated anti-money laundering and terrorist financing laws.
Binance co-founder Changpeng “CZ” Zhao stepped down from his position as CEO of the company and has since pleaded guilty to violation of the Bank Secrecy Act. He faces up to a decade behind bars if convicted.
Despite all the issues, Binance continues to be the leading crypto exchange by trading volume – a position it has maintained since 2017 – and is well ahead of its competitors.
5. More Money Will Be Settled Using Stablecoins Than Via Visa
According to Bitwise researcher Ryan Rasmussen’s predictions, there will be more money settled using fiat-denominated stablecoins than using payment networks like Visa or Mastercard next year.
The so-called “crypto killer app” has grown to a $137 billion market in the past four years. Rasmussen believes that the stablecoin economy will experience major growth throughout 2024.