Bitcoin halvings occur every 210,000 blocks.
Halvings represent milestone events for Bitcoin limiting inflation.

This step function reduction in inflation has fueled speculation on the impact to Bitcoin's valuation and ushered bull markets historically.

What is the Bitcoin Halving?

The Bitcoin halving refers to a planned decrease in the block reward miners receive for adding new blocks to the blockchain approximately every 10 minutes. Halvings occur every 210,000 blocks which takes about 4 years between events.

Some key details on the Bitcoin halving include:

  • First halving was in November 2012 when reward fell from 50 to 25 bitcoins
  • Second was July 2016 when it declined from 25 to 12.5 bitcoins
  • Third was May 2020 when it dropped to current level of 6.25 bitcoins

Per Bitcoin's coded monetary policy, there is a finite supply of 21 million bitcoins. The halving mechanic ensures this cap is reached slowly over time.

Why Do Bitcoin Halvings Occur?

Halvings serve dual purposes for the Bitcoin network:

  • Controls supply issuance based on on programmed schedule
  • Provides periodic shocks to better align mining incentives as block rewards decrease

Without halvings slowly decreasing block subsidies, too much bitcoin could reach circulation prematurely. It might also negatively impact network security once all coins enter supply.

Historical Impact on Price

While fierce debates rage on correlating halvings and prices, historically each halving has preceded tremendous bull runs:

  • First halving led to 2,800% gain in one year from $12 to over $340
  • Second halving powered 20-fold increase from $650 to about $20,000
  • Third halving resulted in 15x jump in 18 months from $9,000 to $69,000

Of course, many other factors drive Bitcoin's volatile pricing. But the step down shock in available bitcoins appears important based on empirical evidence.

What Drives the Halving Price Boost?

Several hypotheses attempt explaining the halving and subsequent price rally pattern repeated three times now:

  • Stock-to-Flow Theory: Planne supply decreases spark bull runs as in other commodities
  • Increased costs of mining drives out less efficient miners and boosts incentive to hold bitcoin
  • Halving entices speculators to acquire bitcoin ahead of reduced issuance flow
  • Scarcity makes bitcoin more valuable as less new supply dilutes holdings

Teasing out exactly how much halvings themselves directly influence market pricing remains elusive. But they indisputably contribute based on historical trends.

When is the Next Bitcoin Halving?

Per the coded 10 minute block verification schedule, the next Bitcoin halving is expected in Spring 2024 based on projections from sites like BitcoinClock and Bitcoin Halving. This will drop the block reward to 3.125 bitcoins.

Some speculate this built-in monetary shock could power Bitcoin past the elusive $100K milestone or even $1 million in the next cycle. But others argue diminishing returns make this less likely than past halvings.


Halvings represent milestone events for Bitcoin limiting inflation and aligning miner incentives as block subsidies decline. The trifecta of post-halving rallies leaves many analysts confidently projecting another mega bull run. However, skeptics highlight risks of diminishing returns.

Regardless of various theories debating halvings direct impact, they present reliable shocks reducing selling pressures from miners. This assurance of disciplined supply issuance should continue bolstering Bitcoin's credentials as provably scarce "digital gold".