2023 is drawing to a close, and what a year its been in the crypto world. From topsy-turvy trading trajectories, to spot ETF applications, to new fresh opportunities guaranteed by big players in the sector, let’s take a look at how this year has played out and what the next one has in store for us.

As a Forbes piece explains, “the least risky prediction for 2024 is that a spot bitcoin ETF will be approved, with multiple submissions currently under review at the SEC.” With major players like BlackRock and Greyscale submitting applications in the second half of the year, we are closing in on a major milestone in the crypto world. This will be a positive development for the sector, by most accounts. As previously indicated, a spot ETF approval could facilitate bitcoin adoption for those more unfamiliar with the crypto world, due to the fact that ETFs are considered a cheap, safe and well-understood regulatory instrument.

However, not every player in the sector is convinced, For example, JP Morgan analysts have been skeptical that an approval would be positive for the market. As an article from DeCrypt says, JP Morgan “argued that as much as $2.7 billion could exit the Greyscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) following its conversion to a spot Bitcoin ETF.” Their report also indicated a lack of interest by investors in already-approved spot ETFs in Canada and Europe as a reason for their skepticism.

On the flip side, other analysts have predicted that Bitcoin might even see its bull run top $500,000 in the new year. More realistic estimates – from a Bloomberg piece – believe bitcoin may top $60,000 in 2024. This would still be a great indicator for the currency, which had a volatile 18 months since the FTX debacle. Another major institution, Goldman Sachs, by surveyed its clients in December. The survey found that 16% of them believe 10% of markets will be fully tokenized in the next couple of years. This indicates that investors are open to embracing new asset classes, as well as to revolutionise “the underlying infrastructure of financial markets”, as CryptoPotato puts it. This degree of innovation – which we predict will increment in 2024 – could draw new institutional investors to the market.

The rise of interest in crypto trading among Goldman Sachs’s clients is not the only positive outcome of 2023. In addition to Bitcoin’s price growth, other assets have experiences a similar exploit in the latter phase of the year. Layer-1 blockchain Solana (SOL) led the way in terms of token price gains, followed by others such as Avalanche (AVAX). Solana’s network saw a significant increase in monthly active addresses, and SOL gained over 700% since the start of the year, according to CoinDesk. There were concrete survival risks for Solana after FTX’s downfall, but its chain has actually thrived this year, thanks mostly to innovative tech and high-profile airdrops.

Lastly, NFTs. Wile the digital art sector went through a rough path during most of 2023, it has recently rebounded. This is mostly due to the launch of several major blockchain-based games, as well as new “phygital” activations, as a recent opinion piece put it. These innovations combined physical products with associated NFTs, making it easier for unfamiliar consumers to get accustomed to the assets. Making digital assets more accessible – both in terms of price and tech – will be the most important challenge of the upcoming year. Our very own CoinGames collection will launch very soon as well, with which users will receive incredible advantages and benefits, so stay tuned for more updates on that front.

As a senior market analyst at OANDA said last week: “It’s possible we have the perfect storm brewing for a strong 2024, with the possibility of closing on all-time highs by the end of the year.” Let’s hope he’s right, but all indications point towards a positive 2024: fingers crossed!