Despite its current pause, Bitcoin remains at the center of all concerns in the world of crypto-currency. Mainly because its presence – or its withdrawal – gives a strong indication of the market trend. This is currently causing the start of what looks like a very promising altseason. But which also makes it possible to draw an initial assessment of its strong rise at the beginning of the year. In particular in the very sensitive area of the quantity of BTC actually available.
Bitcoin’s strength lies largely in its programmed scarcity. A logic inscribed in its code that limits its supply to only 21 million units in the long run. This is expected to happen around the year 2140, but is already showing concrete effects with a limitation of its supply, which currently leaves only 22% of BTC still available for purchase. And this is certainly not going to get any better.
A limited account that is still well above reality. This is due to the disappearance of millions of bitcoins in the unfathomable limbo of blockchain technology. These lost forever due to hazardous manipulations or forgotten wallets. Unforgiving mistakes in the field. And which lead the number of its units to greater scarcity. This is what the CoinMetrics site is obviously trying to estimate more precisely.
There are only 14.5 million BTCs in circulation…
The issue has been debated for years. This is in order to know the exact number of CTCs that are currently in circulation. This has little to do with the supply shown on the CoinMarkerCap site, which reports 18,620,056 units at present. This is the amount produced since its inception, without taking into account the inevitable losses indicated above.
For this reason, the CoinMetrics site has embarked on an attempt to estimate the number more precisely. This was done with the help of a new tool that is supposed to show the « free floating » quantity available. That is to say, the actual number of BTCs actually available. And the surprise is huge…
« It is widely accepted that while there are 18.6 million bitcoins, many are lost and no longer available on the market. That’s why we created the free float supply, a more realistic representation of the 14.5 million Bitcoin on the market. « CoinMetrics
A difference of more than 22%.
This makes a difference that is not insignificant. Indeed, this is more than 22% less than the announced reality. A finding which thus indicates that some 4.1 million BTC (155.8 billion dollars) are no longer definitively in the game. But a study that counts as lost the BTCs that have not been moved for more than 5 years. This does not necessarily mean that they are lost.
In any case, this study allows the analysts of the CoinMetrics site to affirm that the market capitalization of Bitcoin would be currently very clearly overestimated. According to the figures obtained, it would be only 549.5 billion dollars instead of the 705 billion posted. A reality that also affects the multiple forks of the queen of the cryptomoney industry, the best known of which are Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV).
« The application of our methodology to Bitcoin forks (BCH, BSV, BTG) generates an even more marked difference between what is reported as the supply of these assets and the supply that is more likely to be available in the markets. « CoinMetrics
The real question is whether this new calculation tool is reliable. And what implications such a discovery may have, if it proves to be accurate. According to the CoinMetrics website, « it could have investment and market sizing implications for those evaluating Bitcoin’s total market capitalization. « But it could also have a downward impact on Bitcoin’s dominance in the overall market for encryption. The latter currently stands at around 60%.