The price of bitcoin could rise to $50,000 by the end of the year, which could pave the way for it to double by the end of 2024, according to Standard Chartered. Bitcoin has struggled to move meaningfully above the $30,000 level this year, but macro and U.S. regulatory headwinds aren’t the only things holding the price back: miner profitability has fallen with the price, and miners offloading their bitcoin holdings to raise cash are limiting the cryptocurrency’s upside potential. “In Q1-2023 (latest full data set), the 12 largest listed miners – which account for 20% of all global BTC mining – sold 106% of mined BTC (stockpiles pushed this above 100%). We estimate that this was slightly below 100% for Q2,” Geoff Kendrick, head of digital assets research at Standard Chartered, wrote in a note Monday. “However, if the BTC price rises to around USD 50,000, which we expect by end-2023, the share of newly mined being sold should fall to 20-30%. That is a net annual reduction in selling of BTC 250,000 – a large number relative to bitcoin market turnover.” “We previously predicted that this driver would add USD 10,000 to the bitcoin price,” he added. “We now think this estimate is too conservative, and we therefore see upside to our end-2024 target of around $100,000.” BTC.CM= YTD mountain Bitcoin (BTC) this year Miners decide how much of the new supply of bitcoin (900 bitcoins a day) reaches the market, depending on their profitability. If they’re more profitable per bitcoin mined, they can sell less while maintaining cash inflows. That helps lower the supply of bitcoin and pushes its price higher. Miners have three sources of cash: selling bitcoin, selling equity or borrowing. Selling bitcoin is the most likely option for miners wanting to raise cash due to relatively low equity prices and high interest rates making them unlikely to borrow money. Kendrick’s analysis is based on estimates of cash costs per bitcoin mined, drawn from mining companies’ quarterly earnings filings. There are other factors to consider too, he pointed out – including electricity costs, the dominant driver of cash costs and the prices of the mining machines themselves, which have declined due to excess supply but are likely to catch up to bitcoin prices, he said. — CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed reporting.