Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple, has made a bold prediction regarding the cryptocurrency market, anticipating its total value to double within the current year. He attributes this forecast to significant developments, including the launch of the first U.S. spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) and the forthcoming bitcoin “halving.”

Garlinghouse expressed his optimism during an interview with CNBC, stating, “The overall market cap of the crypto industry … is easily predicted to double by the end of this year … [as it’s] impacted by all of these macro factors.” He emphasized the potential positive regulatory momentum in the United States as another factor propelling the market to new heights.

The Ripple CEO’s outlook aligns with expectations of the combined market capitalization of the cryptocurrency market surpassing $5 trillion in the current year. He attributes this projected growth to macro factors such as the debut of the first U.S. spot bitcoin ETF and the upcoming bitcoin halving.

The approval of the first U.S. spot bitcoin ETFs by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on January 10 represents a significant milestone. These ETFs enable institutions and retail investors to access bitcoin exposure through trading on U.S. stock exchanges without directly owning the underlying asset.

The bitcoin halving, occurring approximately every four years, halves the total mining reward to bitcoin miners. This event, scheduled for later this month, is anticipated to further influence market dynamics.

Garlinghouse highlighted the contraction of supply and expansion of demand as fundamental drivers of market growth. He remarked, “That doesn’t take an economics major to tell you what happens when supply contracts and demand expands.”

As of April 4, the total crypto market capitalization stood at approximately $2.6 trillion. A projected doubling of this figure would imply a new total market cap exceeding $5.2 trillion.

Bitcoin, the leading digital currency, has experienced significant growth, appreciating over 140% in the past year. Despite reaching a record high above $73,000 on March 13, its value has since retraced below the $70,000 level.

Garlinghouse also highlighted the potential for positive regulatory developments in the United States, suggesting a shift towards greater clarity and accommodation for the crypto industry. He acknowledged the SEC’s recent enforcement actions, including the lawsuit against Ripple alleging illegal XRP sales, but expressed optimism for regulatory clarity moving forward.

Garlinghouse’s bullish outlook is shared by others in the crypto space, including Marshall Beard, COO of U.S. crypto exchange Gemini, who anticipates bitcoin’s price reaching $150,000 later this year. Despite anticipated volatility, driven by factors such as new regulations and supply dynamics, the overall momentum suggests continued growth for the crypto market.

Featured Image: Freepik @ produtizebro

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