It’s a forecast many cryptocurrency fans may find pretty disheartening, at least for the medium term.

A panel of 35 experts polled by Finder say the cryptocurrency market still has further to run — but they predict that Bitcoin will finish the year just under $US100,000, rather than far above that psychologically important level that many in the market are hoping for.

Many Bitcoin bulls believe BTC will reach $US288,000 or more by the end of the year, driven by increased institutional adoption, mainstream acceptance and coronavirus stimulus measures that have resulted in increased money-printing.

But Finder’s panel of experts are offering crypto-enthusiasts a reality check on BTC’s prospects for the rest of the year.

The experts are all deeply knowledgeable about cryptocurrencies, with names including CakeDeFi founder Julian Hosp, LMAX Group cryptocurrency strategist Joel Kruger, Yap Global founder Samatha Yapp, several academics and the top executives at crypto firms OKCoin, BitRiver, BitBull Capital, NDAX, Unocoin, Blockparty and Delta.app.

They forecast that Bitcoin will peak at $107,484 in 2021 before finishing the year at $US94,967.

Yesterday afternoon the OG cryptocurrency was sitting at just above $US54,000, little changed from yesterday.

Hosp and Morpher chief executive Martin Fröhler were the most bullish on Bitcoin this year, with end-of-year predictions of $US250,000 and $US200,000, respectively.

“Bitcoin is the ultimate long term store of value and will gradually replace gold and bonds in that role,” Fröhler predicts.

Digital Capital Markets managing director Ben Ritchie said BTC will go as high as $120,000.

Stock-to-flow ratio remains one of the most accurate macro indicators for Bitcoin,” he told Finder. “Coupled with overlaying the halving event cycle, it would suggest we peak between US$120-$140,000 before forming a new base around US$100,000.”

But Kruger says that Bitcoin’s upside is limited for 2021.

“The market has more than tripled in value since the start of the year and is very extended technically, all at a time when global markets are at risk, which we believe will also have a short-term negative impact on Bitcoin,” he said.

“One blip in the system, one big bad news story will send the masses running and price volatility will ensue,” agreed The SMEChain founder Sorcha Mulligan.

How far will the bull run?

Slightly over a third of the panellists thought the bull market would run into the last quarter of 2021, while slightly under a third saw the bull run ending in the third quarter. Fifteen per cent thought it would last until the first of 2022 and nine per cent predicted it would run through 2024 and beyond.  Just three per cent thought the bull market would finish this quarter.

UNSW associate professor Elvira Sojli predicted the bull run would only last for the third quarter.

“The run-up was spurred by interesting associated events, which by now have run out of steam,” she told Finder.

Sarah Bergstrand, the chief operating officer of BitBull Capital, told Finder that it might be time for BTC to take a breather.

“While BTC remains bullish, any stark price appreciation in a short period of time cannot be sustainable nor healthy. BTC can go high, but it needs time and stops along the way to reach a major milestone.”

BTC to infinity?

But for the longer term, Bergstrand is incredibly bullish on BTC – predicting a 2025 valuation of $US1 million.

Kruger and Coinmama CEO Sagi Bakshi agree.

“The only question that needs asking in terms of longer-term valuation is whether you think Bitcoin will be around in 2025,” says Kruger.

“If the answer to this question is ‘yes’, the economics support a much higher valuation. It’s as simple as that.”

Yap is forecasting a 2025 value of $US500,000, but says $US1 million isn’t out of the question.

“It used to be outrageous to claim that Bitcoin will reach $100,000 a year ago,” she said.

“But with what we’ve seen this year, it’s not impossible to think that it could reach $1 million.”

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