According to the study by Juniper Research, bitcoin has not only fallen sharply from its December 2017 peak, but has failed to recover despite the weakness of a number of leading fiat currencies, continuing uncertainty around Brexit outcomes and ongoing trade disputes between the US, China and the EU.
The study points out that not only were national and state governments imposing additional restrictions on — and conducting criminal investigations into — cryptocurrency exchanges, but visibility and reach had been severely curtailed by advertising bans introduced by leading social media companies, including Google and Twitter.
It also emphasised the ability of casual investors to buy bitcoin had been significantly reduced by the decision of many financial institutions to prevent purchases via credit cards.
Report author Dr Windsor Holden said: “Bitcoin has no intrinsic value. Like any asset, it is worth whatever someone is prepared to pay for it, but it has no meaning or existence beyond the confines of the ledger.
“It is a bubble, and there is a strong possibility that this bubble could burst in the near future.”