Halvings occur every 210,00 blocks, and May 5 marks the cross-over point into the second leg of 105,000 blocks. For some Bitcoiners, such as Samson Mow, the Bitcoiner pioneering Bitcoin nation-state adoption, the halving is a reminder to stack more SATs:
WE ARE HALFWAY TO THE NEXT HALVING AND YOU HAVEN’T STACKED ENOUGH #BITCOIN YET.
— Samson Mow (@Excellion) May 5, 2022
The halving cycle is a unique device that envelops the Bitcoin issuance rate. As the Cointelegraph Cryptopedia explains, “As a result of the halving cycle, the supply of available Bitcoin decreases, raising the value of Bitcoins yet to be mined.”
The halving is key in determining the supply of Bitcoin –which recently crossed the milestone 19 million mark– and the issuance rate, currently at 6.25 new BTC per roughly 10 minutes. In essence, roughly $250,000 worth of BTC is minted with every new block.
The next halving is due to take place in April 2024, and the previous halving occurred on 11th May 2020 as Bitcoin entered its fourth “epoch.” The system will continue until roughly 2140 when the last Bitcoin is mined.
The issuance rate and the “supply shock” that accompanies the halving have a significant impact on the price:
As shown in the box above, the Bitcoin price has increased by a factor of 100 since the 2012 halving to reach the previous halving price. With current price levels around the $40,000 mark, the price has done another 4x.
The hash rate hit 249.1 exahashes per second (EH/s) overnight on May 4th, pipping the previous all-time high by 1 exahash. In essence, with the hash rate consistently setting new highs, Bitcoin security–as these computers or ‘miners’ work to secure the network–has never been stronger.