Bitcoin Layer 2s Surge Post-Halving, STX Up 20%, Fees Hit $128

Layer 2 tokens surge post-Bitcoin halving, Runes protocol spikes fees, miners hit record $107.8M revenue

By Max Weldon

4/22, 09:17 EDT
Bitcoin / U.S. dollar
Marathon Digital Holdings, Inc.
Riot Blockchain, Inc
Seagate Technology Holdings PLC

Key Takeaway

  • Bitcoin layer 2 tokens like STX surged nearly 20% post-Bitcoin halving, outperforming BTC's 4.7% gain.
  • Grayscale plans to launch a low-fee Bitcoin Mini Trust, undercutting its current GBTC fee with a competitive 0.15% charge.
  • Woo X introduces the first tokenized U.S. Treasury bills for retail customers, merging traditional finance with crypto accessibility.

Layer 2 Tokens Outshine Bitcoin

Following the recent Bitcoin halving event, which reduced the mining reward from 6.25 BTC to 3.125 BTC per block, tokens associated with Bitcoin Layer 2 solutions have seen remarkable price increases, significantly outperforming Bitcoin itself. STX, the native token of Stacks, a leading Bitcoin Layer 2 network, surged nearly 20% to $2.87. In comparison, Bitcoin posted a modest gain of just over 4.7% to $66,300. Other Layer 2 tokens, such as Elastos' ELA and SatoshiVM's SAVM, also experienced notable gains of 11% and 5%, respectively. This trend highlights the growing investor interest in technologies that enhance Bitcoin's scalability and transaction speed, especially in the wake of the halving event.

Runes Protocol Triggers Fee Surge

The introduction of the Runes protocol, enabling users to mint tokens on the Bitcoin blockchain, has led to a significant spike in transaction fees. The mean transaction fee on the Bitcoin network soared to nearly 0.0020 BTC, reaching its highest level since early 2018. This increase in fees, which saw the average transaction cost jump to $127.97 on April 20, was driven by heightened activity following the Runes protocol launch. Users flocked to mint and trade meme coins, pushing transaction fees to new highs. The total number of Runes inscriptions on the Bitcoin blockchain hit 3,700, indicating robust engagement with the new protocol.

Miners Benefit from Record Revenues

Contrary to concerns that the halving would diminish miners' earnings, the simultaneous launch of the Runes protocol has resulted in record revenues for Bitcoin miners. The surge in transaction fees contributed to total miner revenue reaching an all-time high of $107.8 million in a single day. This boon has been particularly beneficial for major mining firms such as Marathon Digital Holdings, Riot Blockchain, and Hut 8 Mining. The unexpected increase in miner income underscores the dynamic and evolving nature of Bitcoin's economy, demonstrating how innovative protocols can have a profound impact on the network.

Management Quotes

  • Willy Chuang, COO of Woo X:

    "For the first time, retail users on a centralized exchange can instantly access an interest-bearing account backed by U.S. Treasury Bills... This initiative bridges a crucial gap between traditional financial securities and the dynamic world of cryptocurrency, offering our users an unprecedented opportunity to engage with low-risk, high-quality financial assets in a seamless, secure, and efficient manner."