If it wasn't devastating enough for investors to see cryptocurrencies lose nearly $2 trillion in value since the height of the 2021 rally, analysts have predicted that the most recent plunge isn't a traditional market pullback. Instead of distinguishing between a market pullback and a longer-term decline, the industry has already shown signs of the more dreaded "the crypto winter."
For context, unlike last year's BTC plunge from $64,000 to $30,000, which occured in a matter of weeks, only to be followed by a stunning rebound to a new record of $68,700, the cooling prices evident in 2022 are making for much rougher waters.
To illustrate, consider the context. In 2022, there is broader economic uncertainty owing to the invasion of Ukraine, soaring inflation, and fears of a recession in major countries. Contagion has also spread through the crypto sector, with the collapse of the Terra blockchain creating a domino effect that hit a number of lenders and hedge funds. However, that doesn't mean the market won't ever recover. In fact, analysts raise questions that consider the opposite outcome.
Namely, what does the impact of the crypto winter mean for the mainstream adoption of crypto - and will this push back or accelerate the industry towards making digital assets an everyday method of payment? Already the industry is seeing new ways for consumers to pay in crypto rather than fiat, suggesting that the answer may be the latter.
Moreover, if new solutions are being made available, does this mean the end of the crypto winter? And if so, does that mean a recovery is underway?
At this stage, the only way to make a viable prediction is by drilling down into the performance of payments providers, arguably one of the strong indicators of where the market is heading.
Crunching the numbers
When denominated in dollars, there's no denying that the 2022 bear market has been the worst Bitcoin has ever seen. At one point, this flagship cryptocurrency's value had plunged by a jaw-dropping $50,000. But in percentage terms, it's a different story.
Indeed, a recent report by Glassnode and CoinMarketCap found that this downturn has been the least severe bear market in Bitcoin's history. So far, the maximum drawdown stands at 74%. We saw falls of 84% in 2018 and 2015… and a 93% crash in 2011.
It's also been interesting to see the response from some of the biggest Bitcoin investors on Wall Street. MicroStrategy owns 130,000 BTC — and despite nursing unrealized losses of billions of dollars, Michael Saylor's vowed to "HODL through adversity." Indeed, after serving as CEO for 33 years, he's now moved to a new role as executive chairman so he can focus more of his energy on the company's crypto reserves — a sign it plans to continue stacking sats.
Contrast that with Tesla, which sold off 75% of its holding for $936 million to free up liquidity. Elon Musk stressed this shouldn't be regarded as a verdict on Bitcoin's merits.
Continuous adoption despite price declines
With large-scale investors employing vastly different strategies to combat the crypto winter, this begs into question the impact of the everyday user.
At present, data from the bitcoin payment processing gateway and business wallet, CoinsPaid suggests that adoption is still trending in the right direction. To date, the payment ecosystem is said to have processed more than €13 billion worth of crypto in total and continues to grow by nearly €1 billion per month amidst the declining market.
Nine million transactions worth €5.6 billion were also processed in the first half of 2022. Over the same period a year earlier, this stood at 3.7 million transactions, with volumes of €2 billion.
In response to these growing numbers, CoinsPaid's co-founder and leader Max Krupyshev told Cointelegraph:
"As the data has shown, the crypto winter is proven to have little effect on mass adoption. For us, this means maintaining plans in the coming years to increase turnover, despite market fluctuations and volatility. We are confident that this crisis, like others, is an opportunity for continued growth. It then becomes our aim to showcase crypto's promising future within our own initiatives, helping to pave the way forward alongside other industry pioneers."
Looking ahead, CoinsPaid's planning to launch branded crypto debit cards and has taken the first steps to creating a nonprofit foundation that'll champion the adoption of the CPD token and its further benefits of use in the CoinsPaid ecosystem. This organization will be based in Switzerland and is set to enter into collaboration agreements with top blockchain firms.
With 10 million clients end users, the CoinsPaid payment ecosystem is going from strength to strength.
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Disclaimer. All financial, statistical and other data regarding the clients or merchants, conducted transactions, etc., has been provided as aggregate from activities of all legal entities operating under brand of Coinspaid, specifically: (I) Dream Finance OÜ, Harju maakond, Kesklinna linnaosa, Rotermanni tn 6, 10111, Tallinn, Estoni; (II) Dream Finance UAB, Gynejq St. 14-65, Vilnius, Lithuania and (III) Dream Finance S.A. DE C.V., 3A Calle Poniente Y, 71 Avenida Norte, Col. Escalon, edif. Lexincorp, office No 3698, San Salvador, El Salvador.