Bitcoin (BTC) starts the second week of April in classic bull market fashion with a surge past $70,000.

The largest cryptocurrency, which spent the weekend grinding higher, is capitalizing on its gains to move ever closer to all-time highs.

Ahead of the first Wall Street open, anticipation for further upside is already tangible in trading circles — can BTC price momentum deliver?

There is certainly a sense of deja vu in crypto this week — the result of pent-up excitement following several weeks of corrective moves.

Volatility, both up and down, could well continue, however. Bitcoin’s next block subsidy halving is just 10 days away, and miners are in the final stages of preparation for the reward per block to drop 50% overnight.

Network fundamentals are thus key to keep an eye on going forward, with difficulty set for new record highs this week.

Elsewhere, macroeconomic sentiment is cool as markets price out the odds of a swift interest rate cut from the United States Federal Reserve.

Cointelegraph examines these issues and more in its weekly rundown of key BTC price topics to monitor in the coming days.

BTC price taps $72,000 as week begins

Bitcoin is wasting no time in attempting to claw back the final lost ground below all-time highs this week.

The weekly close, which came in at around $69,000, followed an uncharacteristic weekend during which BTC/USD slowly edged higher despite the absence of institutional players.

The real move came afterward, however, with the Asia trading session witnessing sudden upside volatility, which at the time of writing had peaked at $72,573 on Bitstamp.

Bitcoin was thus up 2.5% on the day already, per data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView.

BTC/USD 1-day chart. Source: TradingView

“Spot BTC buyers are hungry,” financial commentator Tedtalksmacro summarized in a post on X.

An accompanying chart showed spot buyers leading derivatives on the move higher.

Bitcoin cumulative volume delta (CVD) data. Source: Ted

These spot flows are key for several well-known market observers when it comes to bullish momentum sustaining.

For popular trader Skew, $70,000 hinged on continued interest.

“Volatility remains moderate into HTF picture meaning price swings of $2K are to be expected,” he commented on a chart showing the Bollinger Bands volatility indicator.

“Getting closer to band squeeze territory if price compression occurs into late monday. Still need to see increasing buy volume & spot flows this week to sustain above $70K, at least in the near term.”

BTC/USD chart with Bollinger Bands. Source: Skew

Others on the day saw the potential for a fresh retracement.

For fellow trader Crypto Ed, a “very obvious” pennant structure now in place on daily timeframes could offer a trip back to $68,000 before fresh highs.

“If we do get that pull back and print another higher low, load up for a move towards $80,000,” he told X followers.

BTC/USD chart with $80,000 target. Source: Crypto Ed

Also on the radar were two nearby “gaps” in CME Group’s Bitcoin futures market, with both appearing as the price moved during weekends, now at around $64,000 and $68,500.

“They tend to become kind of self fulfilling prophecies if enough people are watching them and act on it which makes price close the gaps,” trader Daan Crypto Trades warned alongside an illustrative chart.

“The moment price trades further away, and people stop caring, is usually when it loses most of its value.”

BTC/USD chart with CME gaps. Source: Daan Crypto Trades

CPI, PPI due in key inflation marker

Another key week of U.S. macroeconomic data is due, potentially reinforcing the Fed’s views on rate cuts.

While Bitcoiners are mostly focused on the halving, both the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Producer Price Index (PPI) prints for March will come in the next few days.

The U.S. inflation narrative currently contrasts with signals from Europe.

In recent speeches, Fed Chair Jerome Powell has said that officials feel at ease with a data-driven approach to rate cuts, with inflation slowly ebbing and the economy withstanding the impact of tighter policy.

Markets have thus pushed back their expectations of when these might begin to close to the end of the year.

“It’s all about inflation data and the Fed’s next steps this week,” trading resource The Kobeissi Letter wrote in part of its weekly diary on X.

The latest estimates from CME Group’s FedWatch Tool show the odds of a 0.25% cut in either June or July at under 50%.

Fed target rate probabilities for July FOMC meeting. Source: CME Group

At the same time, however, Europe and the United Kingdom are increasingly looking to cut rates sooner.

“We are not yet at the point where we can cut interest rates, but things are moving to the right direction,” Andrew Bailey, chair of the Bank of England, said in March.

Bitcoin miners brace for cost upheaval

It’s Bitcoin halving season, and attention is increasingly focusing on miner preparations.

There are under two weeks until the amount of “new” Bitcoin unlocked per mined block decreases by 50% to 3.125 BTC.

Miners have upped selling in 2024, and now, analysts see a period of adjustment ahead.

“Bitcoin mining costs are set to double by the end of the month after the halving, jumping from $40K to $80K for S19 XPs, commonly utilized by US miners,” Ki Young Ju, CEO of on-chain analytics platform CryptoQuant, revealed this week.

Bitcoin mining cost comparison. Source: Ki Young Ju

Ki noted that mining costs are already double what they were in 2020, but BTC price gains had mitigated the impact on miners’ bottom line.

“Since the May 2020 halving, mining costs doubled, yet a parabolic bull run ensued, covering these costs and achieving profitability,” he added.

A lack of further upside now could thus take its toll on smaller participants with less leeway for fluctuating market forces.

Bitcoin mining data. Source: Ki Young Ju

As Cointelegraph reported, however, some see revenue flows being preserved after the halving thanks to the advent of Bitcoin Ordinals and increasing fees.

“In dollar terms, it’s not obvious that miners would be worse off after the halving, quite the opposite,” Laurent Benayoun, the CEO of crypto adviser and market maker Acheron Trading, said in an interview last week.

BTC mining difficulty, hash rate prep new highs

As such, Bitcoin network fundamentals approach the halving looking stronger than ever.

Mining difficulty, already near all-time highs, is due to increase by approximately 2% on April 11 to pass 85 trillion for the first time.

Despite nearly a month of consolidatory BTC price action, data from monitoring resource also shows that difficulty ultimately decreased by less than 1%.

Bitcoin network fundamentals overview (screenshot). Source:

The mining hash rate tells a similar story. Raw data from MiningPoolStats now puts the total processing power deployment to the network at 684 exahashes per second (EH/s).

Output from known mining pools is practically at the highest ever seen, the numbers show.

Bitcoin hash rate raw data (screenshot). Source: MiningPoolStats

As Cointelegraph reported, preparations for the halving have come from various sources. Among them was a declaration of intent to increase mining output sixfold before the event by Bitdeer Technologies, the Bitcoin mining partner of the Kingdom of Bhutan.

Bitcoin’s “diamond hands” have more selling left

Cointelegraph recently reported that Bitcoin’s long-term holders (LTHs) had become increasingly active sellers at current prices.

Related: Bitcoin absorbs $100M+ ‘sell-side days’ as bears lose BTC price clout

Older coins are also moving on-chain as LTHs’ spent output profit ratio (SOPR) swings more in their favor.

For Checkmate, a lead on-chain analyst at crypto analytics firm Glassnode, however, this is perfectly normal and should not result in sell-side pressure overcoming the market.

“This Bitcoin ATH break looks like just about every previous ATH break,” he suggested about the recent trip to $73,800.

“Long-Term Holders start to spend their coins, taking advantage of the new inflowing demand and liquidity. Smart money folks who buy low and sell high.”

Bitcoin Binary spending indicator (screenshot). Source: Checkonchain

An accompanying chart from his own statistics platform, Checkonchain, examined the spending habits of various coin cohorts over time.

So far, Checkmate argued, history is simply repeating itself. LTH entities tend to shed around 14% of the BTC supply under their control in bull markets, and so far, less than half of this has left their wallets.

“In the prior two cycles, new demand for Bitcoin was able to absorb this LTH sell-side for around 6-8 months, whilst also pushing prices multiples higher,” he wrote.

“If we consider the typical LTH Supply drawdown of -14%, we’re around 40% of the way through this process (ballpark only).”

Bitcoin hodler cohort supply drawdowns. Source: Checkmate

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.