A few days after the Bitcoin halving event, which effectively reduced the ability of miners to be rewarded with freshly minted tokens for their support of the blockchain network, analysts are reporting strong demand for the world's most valuable cryptocurrency. According to Arcane Research, an analytics firm that focuses on the cryptocurrency markets, transaction volume at Bitcoin ATMs around the world has risen by 40% since February.

The halving event took place on May 11; the anticipation that unfolded in the weeks prior to the event was filled with uncertainty and conflicting opinions on how the market would react. A few respected analysts believed that savvy investors would gradually cash out their holdings in a bearish push as the halving date got closer; the strategy in this scenario would be to take advantage of a market bottom and take long positions thereafter, but these assumptions were made before the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 pandemic.

What actually happened in the run-up to the Bitcoin halving event is that transaction volume increased. Institutional investors worried about the contrarian bull rally on Wall Street paid more attention to Bitcoin as a safe haven investment, and this actually increased the profile of the cryptocurrency. A couple of hopeful forecasts called for Bitcoin to touch the $10,000 mark on May 11; alas, an abundance of caution kept BTC/USD from reaching that psychological trading level.

Bitcoin halving events are scheduled to take place every four years as per the blockchain rules set forth by Satoshi Nakamoto, the mysterious author of the research paper that established the limited supply of tokens as well as the reward system for miners. Questions still remain about the future of Bitcoin mining cartels, which mostly operate in China, but if they start winding down their operations, others will certainly jump in.

For the most part, Bitcoin is still more of an investment commodity than a digital currency with widespread circulation. Outside of the cryptocurrency exchange markets, the two countries where Bitcoin enjoys significant adoption are Venezuela and Zimbabwe, two politically unstable nations where fiat currency has pretty much collapsed to the point of being devoid of real value.