JPMorgan has released a research report on the future of bitcoin, and it's predicting strong retail demand for the cryptocurrency over the coming year ahead of the next halving event. According to the report, "retail investor demand for bitcoin is likely to strengthen as we approach the April 2024 halving event." This is partly due to the recent increase in retail demand attributed to the advent of Bitcoin Ordinals and BRC-20 tokens. But more importantly, halving events have historically been accompanied by a bullish trajectory for bitcoin prices that accelerated after they occurred. The bank notes that "the production cost has acted as an effective lower boundary to the cryptocurrency’s price," which means that the halving event, when mining rewards are cut by 50%, would mechanically double the bitcoin production cost to around $40,000, creating a positive psychological effect. However, institutional demand for bitcoin has been falling, with investors discouraged by "fraud, heightened volatility, and a year-to-date U.S. regulatory assault" that has led to increased uncertainty. In contrast, JPMorgan previously argued that gold and bitcoin both rallied strongly following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank as investors regarded these asset classes as "hedges to a catastrophic scenario," with institutional investors buying gold and retail buying bitcoin. All this points to a bright future for bitcoin, at least in the short term. Retail investors who get in before the halving event can expect to see their investments grow along with the cryptocurrency's price. However, investors should be aware of the increased volatility associated with cryptocurrencies, and should only invest what they can afford to lose.