Bitcoin Mining Profit Hits Near Low, Hashprice at $57

Bitcoin mining profitability nears record low, halving fails to boost prices amid market and geopolitical pressures.

By Barry Stearns

4/26, 07:11 EDT
Bitcoin / U.S. dollar
Marathon Digital Holdings, Inc.
Riot Blockchain, Inc
Block, Inc.

Key Takeaway

  • Bitcoin mining profitability nears all-time low post-FTX collapse, with hashprice dropping to $57, signaling challenges for miners.
  • The recent "halving" event had minimal positive impact on Bitcoin's price due to geopolitical tensions and US interest rate expectations.
  • Larger miners like Marathon Digital and Riot Platforms invest heavily in preparation, while smaller miners face potential market exit risks.

Bitcoin Mining Profitability Plummets

The profitability of Bitcoin mining, as measured by the "hashprice," is nearing its all-time low, a situation last seen following the collapse of FTX, indicating a challenging period ahead for miners. This decline in hashprice to $57, from an all-time low of $55, underscores the increasing difficulty and decreasing rewards in the Bitcoin mining sector. The recent Bitcoin "halving" event, which historically boosted Bitcoin's value, has failed to significantly impact the cryptocurrency's price this time, with geopolitical tensions and the anticipation of persistent high US interest rates exerting downward pressure on Bitcoin and other crypto assets.

Market Response to Halving Event

Despite the halving event's potential to be a bullish signal for Bitcoin due to the reduced supply of new coins entering the market, the immediate aftermath has seen Bitcoin's price correction by nearly 13% from its March peak of $73,798 to around $64,214. This correction reflects a broader cooling of enthusiasm for Bitcoin, with significant implications for miners who now face a tougher environment with halved rewards and are increasingly dependent on transaction fees and Bitcoin's price appreciation. The hashprice's brief spike to $139, driven by transaction fees from the Rune protocol, quickly reversed, highlighting the volatility and uncertainty in the mining sector.

Dwindling ETF Interest and Market Stagnation

The enthusiasm for US spot-Bitcoin ETFs has significantly waned, with inflows dropping to $170 million from $4 billion in March, indicating a shift in investor sentiment towards crypto investments. This decline is mirrored in the reduced open interest in the CME Group’s Bitcoin futures market, suggesting a broader trend of diminishing institutional interest in crypto exposure. Following the halving, both Bitcoin and Ether have been trading within tight ranges, signaling a period of market indecision amidst macroeconomic uncertainties and geopolitical tensions.

Shift Towards AI and Mining Innovations

In response to the reduced profitability from Bitcoin mining post-halving, companies like BitDigital, Hive, and Hut 8 are diversifying into artificial intelligence (AI) to explore new revenue streams. This strategic pivot not only addresses the immediate challenges posed by the halving but also positions these companies to benefit from the growing demand for AI compute and infrastructure. Concurrently, Block's development of a three-nanometer (3nm) Bitcoin mining chip represents a significant innovation aimed at disrupting the mining market by enhancing mining efficiency and accessibility, thereby supporting the decentralization of Bitcoin mining.