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Bitcoin (BTC) is starting the second week of its fourth halving cycle clinging to $9,500, but what factors are weighing on the largest cryptocurrency this week?

Fundamentals adapt to halving

The start of a new week has seen Bitcoin fall back from closer to $10,000 to around $9,500, historically a focal price point. 

Post halving, the Bitcoin network hash rate has continued to dip as mining rewards halve. Accordingly, network difficulty is now also due for a decrease, this time by around 3% on Tuesday.

Bitcoin 7-day average hash rate 1-month chart. Source: Blockchain

The mining difficulty adjustment feature is key in ensuring Bitcoin balances security and network participation. 

New futures gap appears

The $9,500 zone means Bitcoin is starting the week by filling a gap that opened up between two weekly trading sessions of CME Group’s Bitcoin futures.

As noted by Cointelegraph Markets earlier on Monday, the “gap” — the difference in price at the end of one trading session and the start of another — is currently between $9,440 and $9,660.

Bitcoin has a tendency to fill such “gaps” with price movements. Last week, a giant gap was filled over several days.

Fed reconfirms money printing activities

The true extent of fiat economy chaos continues to come to light, something which has increasingly contrasted with Bitcoin’s fortunes since the market crash in March.

On Sunday, CBS News aired an interview with Jerome Powell, chairman of the United States Federal Reserve, in which he openly admitted that the central bank “flooded the system with money.”

“Yes. We did. That’s another way to think about it. We did,” he said.

Asked where the trillions of dollars came from, in addition to bond purchases, Powell replied:

We print it digitally.

As Cointelegraph reported, the ailing fiat system is a key focus for new and existing Bitcoiners alike when allocating capital to the cryptocurrency. Last week, it was hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones who revealed holdings of 1-2% of his net assets in BTC.

The reason, he said, was specifically concerns about fiat currency inflation.

…And macro reacts to the Fed

Other macro factors include a noticeable uptick in the price of oil, with WTI climbing above $30 for the first time in two months. 

Bitcoin has traditionally been less impacted by oil volatility, as was shown when some futures contracts went negative last month. 

Macro assets returns for 2020

Macro assets returns for 2020. Source: Skew

On the back of Powell’s comments, gold likewise saw a boost, rising 1.7% on the day.

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