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History of Bitcoin cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is a decentralized cryptocurrency created in 2008 by the pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto.This account of bitcoin history resumes the first ten-years (2008 - 2017 inclusive) of the cryptocurrency.
- 1 Pre-history of Bitcoin
- 2 Bitcoin in 2008
- 3 Bitcoin in 2009
- 4 Bitcoin in 2010
- 5 Bitcoin in 2011
- 6 Bitcoin in 2012
- 7 Bitcoin in 2013
- 8 Bitcoin in 2014
- 9 Bitcoin in 2015
- 10 Bitcoin in 2016
- 11 Bitcoin in 2017
- 12 Bitcoin in 2018
- 13 Bitcoin price history for 2009-2018
- 14 Regulatory issues
- 15 Theft and exchange shutdowns
- 16 Bitcoin taxation and regulation
- 17 See also
- 18 Sources
- 19 External Links
Pre-history of Bitcoin
Prior to the release of bitcoin there were a number of digital cash technologies starting with the issuer based ecash protocols of David Chaum and Stefan Brands. Adam Back developed hashcash, a proof-of-work scheme for spam control. The first proposals for distributed digital scarcity based cryptocurrencies were Wei Dai's b-money and Nick Szabo's bit gold. Hal Finney developed reusable proof of work (RPOW) using hashcash as its proof of work algorithm.
In the bit gold proposal which proposed a collectible market based mechanism for inflation control, Nick Szabo also investigated some additional enabling aspects including a Byzantine fault-tolerant asset registry to store and transfer the chained proof-of-work solutions. The possibility that Satoshi Nakamoto was a computer collective in the European financial sector has also been discussed.
Bitcoin in 2008
On 18 August 2008, the domain name bitcoin.org was registered.
Later that year on October 31st, a link to a paper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto titled Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System was posted to a cryptography mailing list.
On the 9th of November, the Bitcoin project was registered at the open-source-projects community resource, SourceForge.net.
Bitcoin in 2009
In January 2009, the bitcoin network came into existence with the release of the first open source bitcoin client and the issuance of the first bitcoins, with Satoshi Nakamoto mining the first block of bitcoins ever (known as the genesis block), which had a reward of 50 bitcoins. Embedded in the coinbase of this block was the text:
The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.
One of the first supporters, adopters, contributor to bitcoin and receiver of the first bitcoin transaction was programmer Hal Finney. Finney downloaded the bitcoin software the day it was released, and received 10 bitcoins from Nakamoto in the world's first bitcoin transaction. Other early supporters were Wei Dai, creator of bitcoin predecessor b-money, and Nick Szabo, creator of bitcoin predecessor bit gold. Before disappearing from any involvement in bitcoin, Nakamoto in a sense handed over the reins to developer Gavin Andresen, who then became the bitcoin lead developer at the Bitcoin Foundation, the 'anarchic' bitcoin community's closest thing to an official public face.
The value of the first bitcoin transactions were negotiated by individuals on the bitcoin forum with one notable transaction of 10,000 BTC used to indirectly purchase two pizzas delivered by Papa John's. This was the only major security flaw found and exploited in bitcoin's history.
- January 3rd The genesis block – the first block in the bitcoin blockchain – appears. 50 BTC are generated at 18:15:05 (GMT).
- January 9th The first version, Bitcoin v0.1., is issued.
- January 12th First bitcoin transaction, (block #170). Sender is Satoshi Nakamoto. Receiver is Hal Finney.
- October 5th The first Bitcoin course towards exchange dollar is published: 1 USD | 1,309.03 BTC. A public sale is launched on New Liberty Standard stock exchange.
- October 9th The #bitcoin-de channel is registered on IRC.
- December 16th Bitcoin v0.2. appears.
Bitcoin in 2010
- February 6th Bitcoin Market, the first official cryptocurrency stock exchange, is launched.
- May 22nd First online purchase using bitcoin. Laszlo Hanyecz (indireclty) buys Papa John's pizza for 10,000 coins (25 USD).
- July 11th Bitcoin v0.3. is mentioned on news website Slashdot.org. The number of bitcoin users increases significantly.
- July 12th Bitcoin exchange rate increases 10 times in ten days, from 0.008 USD per BTC to 0.08 USD per BTC.
- July 17th MtGox Cryptocurrency exchange is launched.
- August 15th A bug in bitcoin code results in a “dirty” transaction in block # 74638. Users easily find the mistake, correct the code and “clean” the block.
- September 14th User jgarzik offers user puddingpop 10,000 coins (600-650 USD) to open their common customer CUDA in Windows base. The first block with assigned distribution, block # 79764, is mined.
- September 18th User puddingpop announces opening of the CUDA customer on Windows base under the MITd license.
- September 29th User kermit finds invasion in micro transaction, after version v0.3.13 is launched.
- October 1st First public miner, Open CL, is created.
- Octiber 7th Bitcoin exchange rate begins to escalate, after several months stuck at USD$0.06 per BTC.
- October 16th First Bitcoin deposit is registered: a deal between users nanotube and Diabo-3, with user theymos as .
- October 17th #bitcoin-otc trade channel appears on IRC freenode.
- October 28th First short trade transaction: 100 coins between users nanotube and kiba on #bitcoin-otc.
- November 6th Bitcoin share capital reaches 1 million USD. Its exchange rate on MtGox reaches USD$0.50 per BTC.
- December 7th User doublec creates a Bitcoin app for the Nokia N900. User ribuck sends 0.42 BTC in the first ever P2P transaction with the help of mobile device.
- December 9th First open call-agreement contract signed between users nanotube and sgornick on #bitcoin-otc.
- December 16th First block generated by mining pool under user sluch.
Bitcoin in 2011
Based on bitcoin's open source code, other cryptocurrencies started to emerge.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit group, started accepting bitcoins in January 2011, then stopped accepting them in June 2011, citing concerns about a lack of legal precedent about new currency systems. The EFF's decision was reversed on 17 May 2013 when they resumed accepting bitcoin.
- January 8th Pooled mining reaches a capacity of 10 Ghash per second.
- January 27th Biggest monetary transaction in bitcoin history from 3 accounts in Zimbabwe on #bitcoin-otc. The currency rate was 4 BTC to 100 trillion Zimbabwe dollars.
- January 28th Block #105000 is generated – at that point, 5.24 million bitcoins had been issued, 25% of the total 21 million.
- February 9th Bitcoin reaches parity with the US dollar (the exchange rate was one BTC to the USD).
- February 10th After bitcoin is mentioned on Slashdot and Hacker News, Bitcoin.org struggles with surge of new users, many coming from Twitter.
- February 14th An Austrian user puts an old Porsche on sale on a bitcoin exchange for 3000 BTC.
- March 1st User MagicalTux buys the exchange Mtgox.com from founder Jed MacCaleb.
- March 6th Sudden change in the Bitcoin network: connection speed spikes to 900 Ghash per second and decreases to 500 Ghash per second within a short period of time. There are rumors that it was caused by a supercomputer or network bot, dubbed the “mysterious miner”, connecting to the network.
- March 18th low Bitcoin rate comparing to dollar achieved 70 cent per 1 USD. Before it there has been a current increase of the rate (it is possible that it has been made artificially), then there has been a current decrease.
- March 22nd WeUseCoins published the video What Is Bitcoin? and it goes viral with over 8 million views.
- March 27th First stock to exchange BTC for GBP opens.
- March 31st First stock to exchange BTC for BRL opens.
- April 5th BitMarket.eu, first stock to exchange BTC for PLN, opens
- April 12th Fisrt Bitcoin option agreement is signed, on #bitcoin-otc.
- April 16th– TIME magazine publishes an article about crypto currency.
- April 23rd BTC/USD rate reaches and surpasses the USD/euro rate and the USD/pound rate on MtGox stock exchange. The general capitalization of bitcoins is 10 million USD.
- April 27th VirWoX opens first exchange from BTC/SLL.
- June Wikileaks and other organizations began to accept bitcoins for donations.
- June 2nd USD to BTC rate is 10 USD to the coin. For 6 days, the rate is fixed at 31.91 USD to the Bitcoin on MtGox.
- June 12th BTC to USD rate decrease to 10 USD.
- June 13th The first bitcoin theft occurs. User allinvain reports 25 thousand coins (375 thousand USD).
- June 19th MtGox's database suffers a security breach. The names, password hashes and emails of 60 thousands users are stolen. An unknown hacker accesses a MtGox administration account, and sends hundreds of thousands of fake bitcoins, decreasing the value of the crypto currency from 17.5 USD per 1 coin to 1 cent per coin. Sales are resumed a week later. On the same day, thousands of coins are stolen from MyBitcoin accounts.
- July 22nd BitCoins Mobile, the first mobile app for iPad, is launched.
- August 20th First Bitcoin conference at the World Expo exhibition in New York City.
- August 23rd First decentralized P2Pool mines its first block.
- September Vitalik Buterin co-founded Bitcoin Magazine.
- November 25th First crypto currency conference in Europe, takes place in Prague (Czechia).
- December 12th The biggest amount of fees paid for a block up to date: 171 BTC for block # 157235.
- December 23rd Douglas Feigelson of BitBills filed a patent application for "Creating And Using Digital Currency" with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, an action which was contested based on prior art in June 2013.
Bitcoin in 2012
In January 2012, bitcoin was featured as the main subject within a fictionalized trial on the CBS legal drama The Good Wife in the third-season episode "Bitcoin for Dummies". The host of CNBC's Mad Money, Jim Cramer, played himself in a courtroom scene where he testifies that he doesn't consider bitcoin a true currency, saying "There's no central bank to regulate it; it's digital and functions completely peer to peer".
- March 1st About 50000 BTC are stolen after a security upgrade in Linode; it is the biggest bitcoin theft ever.
- June 3rd The biggest block in the chain, # 181919 is created. It includes 1,322 transactions.
- September 15th-16th Bitcoin conference in London.
- September 27th Bitcoin Foundation organization was launched to "accelerate the global growth of bitcoin through standardization, protection, and promotion of the open source protocol". The founders were Gavin Andresen, Jon Matonis, Patrick Murck, Charlie Shrem, and Peter Vessenes.
- October BitPay reported having over 1,000 merchants accepting bitcoin under its payment processing service.
- November WordPress had started accepting bitcoins.
- November 28th Block # 210,000 becomes the first block to yield a 25 BTC reward (all previous existing block rewards had been 50 BTC).
- December 6th The France-based exchange Bitcoin-Central becomes the first exchange to operate within the framework of European regulations.
Bitcoin in 2013
- February The bitcoin-based payment processor Coinbase reported selling US $1 million worth of bitcoins in a single month at over $22 per bitcoin. The Internet Archive announced that it was ready to accept donations as bitcoins and that it intends to give employees the option to receive portions of their salaries in bitcoin currency.
- February 19th The 8th version of Bitcoin Client appears.
- February 28th Bitcoin exchange rate surpasses 31.91 USD for the first time for the last 601 days.
- March In March the bitcoin transaction log called the blockchain temporarily split into two independent chains with differing rules on how transactions were accepted. For six hours two bitcoin networks operated at the same time, each with its own version of the transaction history. The core developers called for a temporary halt to transactions, sparking a sharp sell-off. The Mt.Gox exchange briefly halted bitcoin deposits and the exchange rate briefly dipped by 23% to $37 as the event occurred in the US, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) established regulatory guidelines for "decentralized virtual currencies" such as bitcoin, classifying American "bitcoin miners" who sell their generated bitcoins as Money Service Businesses (or MSBs), that may be subject to registration and other legal obligations. resulting in the bitcoin exchange rate dropping from $266 to $76 before returning to $160 within six hours. Bitcoin gained greater recognition when services such as OkCupid and Foodler began accepting it for payment.
- March 28th Bitcoin capitalization surpasses 1 billion USD.
- April 1st Exchange rate reaches 100 USD to BTC.
- May WebMoney announces creation of a new type of cash-box intended for operations with bitcoins.
- May 15th the US authorities seized accounts associated with Mt. Gox after discovering that it had not registered as a money transmitter with FinCEN in the US.
- May 17th It was reported that BitInstant processed approximately 30 percent of the money going into and out of bitcoin, and in April alone facilitated 30,000 transactions.
- June 23rd It was reported that the US Drug Enforcement Administration listed 11.02 bitcoins as a seized asset in a United States Department of Justice seizure notice pursuant to 21 U.S.C. § 881. It is the first time a government agency has claimed to have seized bitcoin.
- July A project began in Kenya linking bitcoin with M-Pesa, a popular mobile payments system, in an experiment designed to spur innovative payments in Africa. During the same month the Foreign Exchange Administration and Policy Department in Thailand stated that bitcoin lacks any legal framework and would therefore be illegal, which effectively banned trading on bitcoin exchanges in the country. According to Vitalik Buterin, a writer for Bitcoin Magazine, "bitcoin's fate in Thailand may give the electronic currency more credibility in some circles", but he was concerned it didn't bode well for bitcoin in China.
- August 6th Federal Judge Amos Mazzant of the Eastern District of Texas of the Fifth Circuit ruled that bitcoins are "a currency or a form of money" (specifically securities as defined by Federal Securities Laws), and as such were subject to the court's jurisdiction, and Germany's Finance Ministry subsumed bitcoins under the term "unit of account" – a financial instrument – though not as e-money or a functional currency, a classification nonetheless having legal and tax implications.
- October the FBI seized roughly 26,000 BTC from website Silk Road during the arrest of alleged owner Ross William Ulbricht.
- October 29th Robocoin and Bitcoiniacs launched the world's first Bitcoin ATM in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, allowing clients to sell or purchase bitcoin currency at a downtown coffee shop. Chinese internet giant Baidu had allowed clients of website security services to pay with bitcoins.
- November BTC costs over 1000 USD after bitcoin is supported by American game creator Zynga.
- November The University of Nicosia announced that it would be accepting bitcoin as payment for tuition fees, with the university's chief financial officer calling it the "gold of tomorrow". During the November 2013, the China-based bitcoin exchange BTC China overtook the Japan-based Mt. Gox and the Europe-based Bitstamp to become the largest bitcoin trading exchange by trade volume.
- December Overstock.com announced plans to accept bitcoin in the second half of 2014.
- December 5th the People's Bank of China prohibited Chinese financial institutions from using bitcoins. After the announcement, the value of bitcoins dropped, and Baidu no longer accepted bitcoins for certain services. Buying real-world goods with any virtual currency has been illegal in China since at least 2009.
- December 9th 100 USD are stolen from bitcoin wallets.
Bitcoin in 2014
A documentary film, The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin, was released in 2014, featuring interviews with bitcoin users, such as a computer programmer and a drug dealer.
- January Elliptic Vault, the first bitcoin safe storage, opens in London. Bitcoin begins to oust euro in Ireland. More companies agree to accept bitcoin a payment for services. Zynga announced it was testing bitcoin for purchasing in-game assets in seven of its games. That same month, The D Las Vegas Casino Hotel and Golden Gate Hotel & Casino properties in downtown Las Vegas announced they would also begin accepting bitcoin, according to an article by USA Today. The article also stated the currency would be accepted in five locations, including the front desk and certain restaurants. The network rate exceeded 10 petahash/sec. TigerDirect and Overstock.com started accepting bitcoin.
- January 24th BTC China renews sales.
- January 28th Vice-president of the Bitcoin Foundation arrested under money laundering charges. As a result of the ensuing panic, bitcoin exchange rate decreased by 40 USD.
- February One of the largest bitcoin exchanges, Mt.Gox, suspended withdrawals citing technical issues. By the end of the month, Mt. Gox had filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan amid reports that 744,000 bitcoins had been stolen. Months before the filing, the popularity of Mt. Gox had waned as users experienced difficulties withdrawing funds.
- February 1st American newspaper The Chicago Sun-Times accepts payment in bitcoin for subscriptions.
- February 10th-12th Problems with transactions in several big stock exchanges. Bitcoin rate decreased to USD$600 (a 30% decrease).
- June The network exceeded 100 petahash/sec.
- June 18th Tt was announced that bitcoin payment service provider BitPay would become the new sponsor of St.Petersburg Bowl under a two-year deal, renamed the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl. Bitcoin was to be accepted for ticket and concession sales at the game as part of the sponsorship, and the sponsorship itself was also paid for using bitcoin.
- July Newegg and Dell started accepting bitcoin.
- September TeraExchange, LLC, received approval from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission "CFTC" to begin listing an over-the-counter swap product based on the price of a bitcoin. The CFTC swap product approval marks the first time a U.S. regulatory agency approved a bitcoin financial product.
- November 5th Buttercoin, a US venture-backed bitcoin exchange, is launched.
- December Microsoft began to accept bitcoin to buy Xbox games and Windows software.
In 2014, several lighthearted songs celebrating bitcoin such as the Ode to Satoshi have been released.
Bitcoin in 2015
- January Coinbase raised 75 million USD as part of a Series C funding round, smashing the previous record for a bitcoin company. Less than one year after the collapse of Mt.Gox, United Kingdom-based exchange Bitstamp announced that their exchange would be taken offline while they investigate a hack which resulted in about 19,000 bitcoins (equivalent to roughly US $5 million at that time) being stolen from their hot wallet. The exchange remained offline for several days amid speculation that customers had lost their funds. Bitstamp resumed trading on 9 January after increasing security measures and assuring customers that their account balances would not be impacted.
- March Bitcoin startup 21 Inc. announced it had raised 116 million USD in venture funding, the largest amount for any digital currency-related companies.
- August It was estimated that 160,000 merchants accept bitcoin payments. Barclays announced that they would become the first UK high street bank to start accepting bitcoin, with a plan to facilitate users to make charitable donations using the cryptocurrency outside their systems. They partnered in April 2016 with mobile payment startup Circle Internet Financial.
- October Possibility to add a symbol for bitcoin in unicode is presented at Unicode Consortium.
Bitcoin in 2016
- January Network speed exceeds 1 exahash/sec.
- March The Cabinet of Japan acknowledges virtual currencies like Bitcoin as payment means on an equal basis with real money. The largest South African online cryptocurrency market, Bidorbuy, opens.
- April The Steam Service starts accepting bitcoin as payment for video games and other online media.
- July Researchers published a paper showing that by November 2013 bitcoin commerce was no longer driven by "sin" activities but instead by legitimate enterprises. Uber switched to bitcoin in Argentina after the government blocked credit card companies from dealing with Uber.
- August Hackers attack Bitfinex, a large exchange, taking almost 120 000 bitcoins (about $60 million USD).
- September The number of bitcoin ATMs had doubled over the last 18 months and reached 771 ATMs worldwide.
- November The Swiss railway operator SBB (CFF) upgraded all their automated ticket machines so that bitcoin could be bought from them using the scanner on the ticket machine to scan the bitcoin address on a phone app.
Bitcoin generates more academic interest year after year; the number of Google Scholar articles published mentioning bitcoin grew from 83 in 2009, to 424 in 2012, and 3580 in 2016. Also, the academic Ledger Journal published its first issue. It is edited by Peter Rizun.
Bitcoin in 2017
The number of businesses accepting bitcoin continues to increase. In January 2017, NHK reported the number of online stores accepting bitcoin in Japan had increased 4.6 times over the past year. BitPay CEO Stephen Pair declared the company's transaction rate grew 3× from January 2016 to February 2017, and explained usage of bitcoin is growing in B2B supply chain payments.
Bitcoin gains more legitimacy among lawmakers and legacy financial companies. For example, Japan passed a law to accept bitcoin as a legal payment method, and Russia has announced that it will legalize the use of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. And Norway’s largest online bank, Skandiabanken, integrates bitcoin accounts.
Exchange trading volumes continue to increase. For the 6-month period ending March 2017, Mexican exchange Bitso saw trading volume increase 1500%. Between January and May 2017 Poloniex saw an increase of more than 600% active traders online and regularly processed 640% more transactions.
- March Number of GitHub projects related with bitcoin exceeds 10,000.
- June The Bitcoin symbol was encoded in Unicode version 10.0 at position U+20BF (₿) in the Currency Symbols block.
- June 12th Bitcoin exchange rate exceeds USD$3000 to the BTC.
- August 1st Bitcoin split into two derivative digital currencies, the classic bitcoin (BTC) and the Bitcoin Cash (BCH). The split has been called the Bitcoin Cash hard fork.
- September 1st Bitcoin exchange rate exceeds USD$5000.
- October China forbids cryptocurrencies and ICOs.
- Novermber 29th Bitcoin exchange rate exceeds USD$10,000.
- December Cboe Global Markets begins offering bitcoin futures, allowing investors to speculate about bitcoin prices.
- December 6th The software marketplace Steam announced that it would no longer accept bitcoin as payment for its products, citing slow transactions speeds and price volatility.
Bitcoin in 2018
This section of article needs to moderate. Feel free to describe the events and news of Bitcoin in 2018.
Bitcoin price history for 2009-2018
Among the factors which may have contributed to this rise were the European sovereign-debt crisis—particularly the 2012–2013 Cypriot financial crisis—statements by FinCEN improving the currency's legal standing and rising media and Internet interest.
Until 2013, almost all market with bitcoins were in US $.
As the market valuation of the total stock of bitcoins approached US $1 billion, some commentators called bitcoin prices a bubble. In early April 2013, the price per bitcoin dropped from $266 to around $50 and then rose to around $100. Over two weeks starting late June 2013 the price dropped steadily to $70. The price began to recover, peaking once again on 1 October at $140. On 2 October, The Silk Road was seized by the FBI. This Ross Ulbricht caused a flash crash to $110. The price quickly rebounded, returning to $200 several weeks later. The latest run went from $200 on 3 November to $900 on 18 November. Bitcoin passed US $1,000 on 28 November 2013 at Mt. Gox.
Prices fell to around $400 in April 2014, before rallying in the middle of the year. They then declined to not much more than $200 in early 2015.
|Date||USD : 1 BTC||Notes|
|Jan 2009 – Mar 2010||basically none||No exchanges or market, users were mainly cryptography fans who were sending bitcoins for hobby purposes representing low or no value. In March 2010, user "SmokeTooMuch" auctioned 10,000 BTC for $50 (cumulatively), but no buyer was found.|
|Mar 2010||$0.003||On 17 Mar 2010, the now-defunct BitcoinMarket.com exchange is the first one that starts operating.|
|May 2010||less than $0.01||On 22 May 2010, Laszlo Hanyecz made the first real-world transaction by buying two pizzas in Jacksonville, Florida for 10,000 BTC.|
|July 2010||$0.08||In five days, the price grew 1000%, rising from $0.008 to $0.08 for 1 bitcoin.|
|Feb 2011 – April 2011||$1.00||Bitcoin takes parity with US dollar.|
|8 July 2011||$31.00||top of first "bubble", followed by the first price drop|
|Dec 2011||$2.00||minimum after few months|
|Dec 2012||$13.00||slowly rising for a year|
|11 April 2013||$266||top of a price rally, during which the value was growing by 5-10% daily.|
|May 2013||$130||basically stable, again slowly rising.|
|June 2013||$100||in June slowly dropping to $70, but rising in July to $110|
|Nov 2013||$350 — $1,242||from October $150–$200 in November, rising to $1,242 on 29 November 2013.|
|Dec 2013||$600 — $1,000||Price crashed to $600, rebounded to $1,000, crashed again to the $500 range. Stabilized to the ~ $650–$800 range.|
|Jan 2014||$750 — $1,000||Price spiked to $1000 briefly, then settled in the $800–$900 range for the rest of the month.|
|Feb 2014||$550 — $750||Price fell following the shutdown of Mt. Gox before recovering to the $600–$700 range.|
|Mar 2014||$450 — $700||Price continued to fall due to a false report regarding bitcoin ban in China and uncertainty over whether the Chinese government would seek to prohibit banks from working with digital currency exchanges.|
|Apr 2014||$340 — $530||The lowest price since the 2012–2013 Cypriot financial crisis had been reached at 3:25 AM on 11 April|
|May 2014||$440 — $630||The downtrend first slow down and then reverse, increasing over 30% in the last days of May.|
|Mar 2015||$200 — $300||Price fell through to early 2015.|
|Early Nov 2015||$395 — $504||Large spike in value from 225–250 at the start of October to the 2015 record high of $504.|
|May–June 2016||$450 — $750||Large spike in value starting from $450 and reaching a maximum of $750.|
|July–September 2016||$600 — $630||Price stabilized in the low $600 range.|
|October–November 2016||$600 — $780||As the Chinese Renminbi depreciated against the US Dollar, bitcoin rose to the upper $700s.|
|January 2017||$800 — $1,150|
|5-12 January 2017||$750 — $920||Price fell 30% in a week, reaching a multi-month low of $750.|
|2-3 March 2017||$1,290+||Price broke above the November 2013 high of $1,242 and then traded above $1,290.|
|April 2017||$1,210 — $1,250|
|May 2017||$2,000||Price reached a new high, reaching US $1,402.03 on 1 May 2017, and over US $1,800 on 11 May 2017. On 20 May 2017, the price of one bitcoin passed US $2,000 for the first time.|
|May–June 2017||$2,000 — $3,200+||Price reached an all-time high of $3,000 on 12 June and is oscilating around $2,500 since then. As of 6 August 2017, the price is $3,270.|
|August 2017||$4,400||On 5 August 2017, the price of one BTC passed US $3,000 for the first time. On 12 August 2017, the price of one BTC passed US $4,000 for the first time. Two days later, the price of one BTC passed US $4,400 for the first time.|
|September 2017||$5,000||On 1 September 2017, bitcoin broke US $5,000 for the first time, topping out at US $5,013.91.|
|12 September 2017||$2,900||Price dipped harshly from China's bitcoin ICO and exchange crackdown (those following improper practices)|
|13 October 2017||$5,600||Price shot back up as the world moves on past the incident following China's crackdown|
|21 October 2017||$6,180||Price hit another all time high as the impending forks draw closer|
|6 November 2017||$7,300|
|12 November 2017||$5,519-6,295||Related to surge of price of Bitcoin Cash, topping at US $2477.65/BCH or approx 2.2-2.5x of value of Bitcoin Cash to one Bitcoin. The developments knocks out Ethereum as second most popular cryptocurrency into third over the total market cap of said cryptocurrency as per USD value at least temporary before Ethereum steals the spot back at second place. Closed just shy of USD$6000/BTC|
|17-20 November 2017||$7,600-8,100||Briefly topped at USD $8004.59/BTC at 01:14:11 UTC before retreating from highs. At 05:35 UTC on 20 November 2017 it stood at USD$7,988.23/BTC according to CoinDesk. This surge in Bitcoin may be related to developments in the 2017 Zimbabwean coup d'état. The market reaction in one Bitcoin exchange is alarming as 1 BTC topped nearly US $13,500, just shy of 2 times the value of the International market.|
|25 November 2017||$9,000||Bitcoin surpasses the $9,000 mark for the first time.|
|28 November 2017||$10,000||Bitcoin surpasses $10,000 for the first time.|
|29 November 2017||$11,000||Bitcoin surpasses $11,000 for the first time.|
|5 December 2017||$12,000||Bitcoin surpasses $12,000 for the first time.|
|6 December 2017||$13,000||Bitcoin surpasses $13,000 for the first time.|
|7 December 2017||$17,000||Bitcoin surpasses $17,000 for the first time @ 23:03.|
|8 December 2017||$18,000||Bitcoin surpasses $18,000 for the first time @ 00:28.|
|8 December 2017||14,277||Bitcoin price dropped to ~ $14,000, but later that day it reaches $16,250|
On 18 March 2013, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (or FinCEN), a bureau of the United States Department of the Treasury, issued a report regarding centralized and decentralized "virtual currencies" and their legal status within "money services business" (MSB) and Bank Secrecy Act regulations. Since FinCEN issued this guidance, dozens of virtual currency exchangers and administrators have registered with FinCEN, and FinCEN is receiving an increasing number of suspicious activity reports (SARs) from these entities.
Additionally, FinCEN claimed regulation over American entities that manage bitcoins in a payment processor setting or as an exchanger: "In addition, a person is an exchanger and a money transmitter if the person accepts such de-centralized convertible virtual currency from one person and transmits it to another person as part of the acceptance and transfer of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency."
In summary, FinCEN's decision would require bitcoin exchanges where bitcoins are traded for traditional currencies to disclose large transactions and suspicious activity, comply with money laundering regulations, and collect information about their customers as traditional financial institutions are required to do.
Patrick Murck of the Bitcoin Foundation criticized FinCEN's report as an "overreach" and claimed that FinCEN "cannot rely on this guidance in any enforcement action".
Jennifer Shasky Calvery, the director of FinCEN said, "Virtual currencies are subject to the same rules as other currencies. Basic money-services business rules apply here."
In 2013, the U.S. Treasury extended its anti-money laundering regulations to processors of bitcoin transactions.
In June 2013, Bitcoin Foundation board member Jon Matonis wrote in Forbes that he received a warning letter from the California Department of Financial Institutions accusing the foundation of unlicensed money transmission. Matonis denied that the foundation is engaged in money transmission and said he viewed the case as "an opportunity to educate state regulators."
In late July 2013, the industry group Committee for the Establishment of the Digital Asset Transfer Authority began to form to set best practices and standards, to work with regulators and policymakers to adapt existing currency requirements to digital currency technology and business models and develop risk management standards.
In 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed an administrative action against Erik T. Voorhees, for violating Securities Act Section 5 for publicly offering unregistered interests in two bitcoin websites in exchange for bitcoins.
Theft and exchange shutdowns
Bitcoins can be stored in a bitcoin cryptocurrency wallet. Theft of bitcoin has been documented on numerous occasions. At other times, bitcoin exchanges have shut down, taking their clients' bitcoins with them. A Wired study published April 2013 showed that 45 percent of bitcoin exchanges end up closing.
On 19 June 2011, a security breach of the Mt. Gox bitcoin exchange caused the nominal price of a bitcoin to fraudulently drop to one cent on the Mt. Gox exchange, after a hacker used credentials from a Mt. Gox auditor's compromised computer illegally to transfer a large number of bitcoins to himself. They used the exchange's software to sell them all nominally, creating a massive "ask" order at any price. Within minutes, the price reverted to its correct user-traded value. Accounts with the equivalent of more than US $8,750,000 were affected.
In August 2011, MyBitcoin, a now defunct bitcoin transaction processor, declared that it was hacked, which caused it to be shut down, paying 49% on customer deposits, leaving more than 78,000 bitcoins (equivalent to roughly US $800,000 at that time) unaccounted for.
In early August 2012, a lawsuit was filed in San Francisco court against Bitcoinica — a bitcoin trading venue — claiming about US$ 460,000 from the company. Bitcoinica was hacked twice in 2012, which led to allegations that the venue neglected the safety of customers' money and cheated them out of withdrawal requests.
In late August 2012, an operation titled Bitcoin Savings and Trust was shut down by the owner, leaving around US$5.6 million in bitcoin-based debts; this led to allegations that the operation was a Ponzi scheme. In September 2012, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission had reportedly started an investigation on the case.
In September 2012, Bitfloor, a bitcoin exchange, also reported being hacked, with 24,000 bitcoins (worth about US$250,000) stolen. As a result, Bitfloor suspended operations. The same month, Bitfloor resumed operations; its founder said that he reported the theft to FBI, and that he plans to repay the victims, though the time frame for repayment is unclear.
On 3 April 2013, Instawallet, a web-based wallet provider, was hacked, resulting in the theft of over 35,000 bitcoins which were valued at US$129.90 per bitcoin at the time, or nearly $4.6 million in total. As a result, Instawallet suspended operations.
In October 2013, Inputs.io, an Australian-based bitcoin wallet provider was hacked with a loss of 4100 bitcoins, worth over A$1 million at time of theft. The service was run by the operator TradeFortress. Coinchat, the associated bitcoin chat room, has been taken over by a new admin.
On 26 October 2013, a Hong-Kong based bitcoin trading platform owned by Global Bond Limited (GBL) vanished with 30 million yuan (US $5 million) from 500 investors.
Mt. Gox, the Japan-based exchange that in 2013 handled 70% of all worldwide bitcoin traffic, declared bankruptcy in February 2014, with bitcoins worth about $390 million missing, for unclear reasons. The CEO was eventually arrested and charged with embezzlement.
On 3 March 2014, Flexcoin announced it was closing its doors because of a hack attack that took place the day before. In a statement that now occupies their homepage, they announced on 3 March 2014 that "As Flexcoin does not have the resources, assets, or otherwise to come back from this loss the hack, we are closing our doors immediately." Users can no longer log into the site.
Chinese cryptocurrency exchange Bter lost $2.1 million in BTC in February 2015.
The Slovenian exchange Bitstamp lost bitcoin worth $5.1 million to a hack in January 2015.
The US-based exchange Cryptsy declared bankruptcy in January 2016, ostensibly because of a 2014 hacking incident; the court-appointed receiver later alleged that Cryptsy's CEO had stolen $3.3 million.
In May 2016, Gatecoin closed temporarily after a breach had caused a loss of about $2 million in cryptocurrency. It subsequently relaunched its exchange in August 2016 and is slowly reimbursing its customers.
In August 2016, hackers stole some $72 million in customer bitcoin from the Hong-Kong-based exchange Bitfinex.
In December 2017, hackers stole 4,700 Bitcoins from Nicehash a platform that allowed users to sell hashing power. The value of the stolen bitcoins totaled about $80M.
Bitcoin taxation and regulation
In 2012, the Cryptocurrency Legal Advocacy Group (CLAG) stressed the importance for taxpayers to determine whether taxes are due on a bitcoin-related transaction based on whether one has experienced a "realization event": when a taxpayer has provided a service in exchange for bitcoins, a realization event has probably occurred and any gain or loss would likely be calculated using fair market values for the service provided."
In August 2013, the German Finance Ministry characterized bitcoin as a unit of account.
On 5 December 2013, the People's Bank of China announced in a press release regarding bitcoin regulation that whilst individuals in China are permitted to freely trade and exchange bitcoins as a commodity, it is prohibited for Chinese financial banks to operate using bitcoins or for bitcoins to be used as legal tender currency, and that entities dealing with bitcoins must track and report suspicious activity to prevent money laundering. The value of bitcoin dropped on various exchanges between 11 and 20 percent following the regulation announcement, before rebounding upward again.