The Bitcoin (BTC) network hash rate has just taken a steep plummet and is now down almost 45% from its 2020 peak.

The network’s hash rate sank from 136.2 quintillion hashes per second (EH/s) on March 1 to 7.5.7 EH/s today, March 26, according to data from — another analytics site for the coin’s blockchain — reveals a similar pattern, if less stark. The site reported a 2020 peak of roughly 150 EH/s on March 5, today down to 105.6 EH/s — a 29% decrease.

Hash Rate

Bitcoin network hash rate, April 19, 2019–March 27, 2020, Source:


Hash rate and difficulty

The hash rate of a cryptocurrency is a parameter that gives the measure of the number of calculations that a given network can perform each second. 

A higher hash rate means greater competition among miners to validate new blocks; it also increases the number of resources needed for performing a 51% attack, making the network more secure.

After a volatile month in which Bitcoin saw dramatic, if short-lived, losses of as high as 60% to around $3,600 in mid-March, the network’s difficulty yesterday decreased by close to 16%. 

Difficulty — or how challenging it is computationally to solve and validate a block on the blockchain — is set to adjust every 2016 blocks, or two weeks, in order to maintain a consistent ~10-minute block verification time. 

This has a close connection to the network’s hash rate. Typically, when the network sees a low level of participating mining power, the difficulty will tumble — while in periods of intense network participation, it rises, working as a counterbalancing mechanism.

As reported yesterday, the last downward adjustment in difficulty was on February 25 of this year, when the coin’s price was around $9,900. Just three days later, it dropped to around $8,800, and by March 14, to nearly $4,800 — and as low as $3,600 on some exchanges, as noted above.


Interpreting the data

Theis relationship between price, hash rate, and difficulty has historically generated a trend that some analysts refer to as a “miners’ capitulation cycle.” 

The theory holds that while Bitcoin’s price remains high, and mining is profitable, both hash rate and difficulty inch upwards until they reach a threshold at which miners are squeezed and forced to liquidate more and more of their holdings to cover their expenses — leading to an increased supply of Bitcoin on the market. 

The “capitulation point” — at which some can no longer afford to keep mining altogether — then involves a decline in hash rate (reflecting lower participation) — as can be seen today —  and a subsequent reset in the network’s difficulty.

According to data from, Bitcoin’s difficulty is currently forecast to decrease by a further 16% in 14 days’ time.

Cryptos feed

Latest Crypto News & Analysis

Editors’ Picks

Bitcoin Price Analysis: Bearish technical signals point to a test of the 6K area

Bitcoin is looking bearish on Wednesday as the price moved 3% lower after rejecting higher levels. The market bounced off the blue trendline and pushed through the 55 and 200 hourly moving averages.

More Bitcoin News

Ripple Price Analysis: Bearish technical signals could seen XRP to 0.1600

Ripple has had a good run at testing upside targets recently but it seems there was no breaking 0.1800 for now. Now it seems the trendline in black on the chart has been broken to the downside.

More Ripple News

ETH/USD locked in a range; short-term recovery capped by $134.40

ETH/USD is changing hands at $132.00, mostly unchanged both on a day-to-day basis and since the beginning of Wednesday. The second-largest digital asset has been moving within a short-term bearish trend amid high volatility. 

More Ethereum News

Monero Price Analysis: XMR pushes higher towards the 50.00 level

Monero has caught a bid late in the US session on Wednesday after trading lower for most of the day. The price has just recently moved through the moving averages (55 & 200) which can be considered a bullish sign. If the black resistance line at 48.20 ...

More Bitcoin Cash News


Bitcoin Weekly Forecast: Coronavirus will either kill Bitcoin or make it stronger

Bitcoin is about to finish the second positive week in a row. The first digital coin has recovered from $5,680 and came close to psychological $7,000 during the week.

Read the weekly forecast