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¿Qué es un halving de bitcoin?

Guía para principiantes sobre halvings

Un halving es un evento que reduce la cantidad de bitcoins (BTC) que entran en circulación a través del proceso de minería de bitcoin. Con el protocolo de Bitcoin, los halvings tienen lugar aproximadamente una vez cada cuatro años.

El autor del white paper de Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto, instauró los eventos de halving como una forma de reducir automáticamente la cantidad de bitcoins de nueva creación que entraban en circulación con el paso del tiempo. El proceso de halving ha continuado sin intervención humana desde que Nakamoto produjo el bloque génesis de bitcoin.

Los halvings de recompensa por bloque son una de las características más innovadoras del bitcoin. Muchos economistas opinan que este sistema, unido a su oferta máxima de 21 millones de monedas, es lo que convierte al bitcoin en un depósito de valor superior. Una vez que el protocolo alcance este número, no se podrá minar más bitcoin.

bitcoin halving image

btcBitcoin Price

$67.560.00
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68.762
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66.007

When is the next bitcoin halving?


The next halving will be in April 2024.

On that day, the bitcoin protocol will automatically reduce the bitcoin mining rewards from 6.25 BTC to 3.125 BTC per block.

This bitcoin block reward rate will remain at 3.125 BTC until the next halving takes place — 210,000 blocks later. 

With that 2028 halving, the block reward will automatically halve again to 1.5625 BTC per block.

How is bitcoin different from “normal” money?


To best understand halvings, it's helpful to first understand how bitcoin is different to government-issued currencies like the US dollar.

The monetary policies that govern government-issued national currencies are subject to change based on the discretion of a central authority. These are often a country's central bank or government. Monetary policy is the way by which a central bank controls the amount of money that exists within the economy.

Using monetary policy, governments can modify their money supply by creating units of currency as they see fit. To avoid defaulting on their debts, governments have often chosen to increase their money supply. Increasing the money supply allows governments to use newly created currency to fulfill their past debt obligations.

The process of creating new units of currency (increasing the money supply) is said to debase the currency. Debasement refers to a reduction in the amount of goods people can purchase with each unit of currency. In economics, this concept of how many goods can be purchased for a unit of currency is known as purchasing power.

Creating many new currency units and releasing them into circulation can also drive inflation. Inflation is an increase in the prices of goods and services across an economy.

So, how is bitcoin different?

Unlike fiat currencies, bitcoin is a fully decentralized and programmatically controlled financial protocol. No single government, central bank, or crypto holder can override the rules of bitcoin or decide for themselves how the protocol should operate.

New units of bitcoin are issued based on a fixed schedule that Bitcoin's anonymous creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, programmed into the protocol when it first launched. These rules are hard-coded into bitcoin's source code and are difficult to change without a majority consensus from all nodes on the network.

How do bitcoin halvings work?


Bitcoin halvings happen automatically. Because Bitcoin is a decentralized computer protocol, no one in the world needs to do anything in order for the halving to take place.

Nakamoto coded a programmatic halving system into Bitcoin's source code to automatically taper the amount of new bitcoin released as block rewards.

This system happens once every 210,000 blocks and has continued to autonomously manage bitcoin's issuance schedule since.

The protocol automatically performed the first bitcoin halving event on November 28, 2012, and saw bitcoin block rewards decrease from 50 BTC to 25 BTC.

There have been a total of three halving events since Bitcoin's launch and the period between halvings is called a halving cycle. The previous halving took place on May 11, 2020. On that day, block reward was halved from 12.5 BTC per block to its current rate of 6.25 BTC per block.

The bitcoin block reward will continue to halve until the number of bitcoins in circulation reaches the maximum supply of 21 million.

Currently, over 90% of bitcoin's total supply has already entered into circulation. Because of the halving schedule, the blockchain will release the remaining 2 million coins over a significantly longer period of time.

It is important to note that only the newly created bitcoin part of the block reward gets repeatedly halved over time. Some using bitcoin may choose to include additional amounts of bitcoin with their transaction as an incentive for miners to include their transaction earlier. This additional fee that senders may choose to send to miners doesn't cut in half along with the block reward.

How are new bitcoin created?


A process called mining both verifies bitcoin transactions and controls new bitcoin creation.

Bitcoin mining is a cryptography-based competition that involves computer operators — known as miners — using purpose-built computing equipment.

Only one miner can win each round of the competition, and new rounds run every ten minutes.

Each time a miner wins, they gain the right to commit a new block of pending transactions to the Bitcoin blockchain. The winning miner also gets a reward for mining a block — known as a block reward.

This block reward consists of an amount of newly minted bitcoin, plus any transaction fees the sender wishes to include with the transaction.

The block reward is ultimately how bitcoin is created and enters circulation.

The bitcoin halving process reduces that amount of newly minted bitcoin by half each time it occurs.

¿Qué efectos tienen los eventos de halving en la cotización del bitcoin?


Desde una perspectiva histórica, tras cada uno de los tres últimos halvings del bitcoin se han producido subidas espectaculares de su precio.

  • N.º 1: subida del 9.520% durante los 365 días siguientes.
  • N.º 2: subida del 3.402% durante los 518 días siguientes.
  • N.º 3: subida del 652% durante los 335 días siguientes.

De estos datos se deduce que el tiempo medio que transcurre antes de que los precios alcancen su máximo tras un halving es de unos 406 días.

Por supuesto, los rendimientos pasados no son garantía de resultados futuros, y aunque muchos creen que los halvings son los catalizadores fundamentales de estos repuntes, no podemos saber con certeza si es así. 

¿Cuántos halvings de bitcoin quedan?


Se ha estimado en repetidas ocasiones que el último bitcoin entrará en circulación en el año 2140.

Si eso es correcto, significa que, teóricamente, debería haber al menos otros 29 eventos de halving de aquí a entonces.

¿Por qué son importantes los halvings de bitcoin?


Nakamoto implementó los halvings en la red de Bitcoin para controlar la tasa de inflación de su criptomoneda nativa. Este proceso es completamente diferente de la tasa a la que la moneda emitida por el Gobierno entra en circulación. 

En las economías basadas en el dinero en efectivo, la oferta puede aumentar (o disminuir) drásticamente de un momento a otro, en función de la decisión de un banco central. En estos casos, millones de nuevas unidades de una moneda pueden entrar (o salir) del mercado cuando los Gobiernos nacionales lo consideren necesario.

Bitcoin simplemente carece de la funcionalidad necesaria para permitir que una sola entidad cambie su sistema de emisión.

Por ello, muchas personas consideran que el bitcoin es una forma de dinero más resistente que no está sujeta a las mismas intervenciones centralizadas que se observan en las monedas controladas por los bancos centrales.

Empiece a comprar bitcoin


Los halvings representan una de las características más emocionantes e innovadoras del bitcoin.

No solo parecen haber afectado positiva y repetidamente a su precio de mercado, sino que su previsibilidad y transparencia son factores clave que distinguen al bitcoin de las monedas nacionales y de todos los demás tipos de activos.

¿Todo listo para dar el siguiente paso en su andadura criptográfica? Haga clic en el botón que aparece a continuación para comprar bitcoins en Kraken hoy mismo.