Less than 1 % of Bitcoin Addresses Have a Value of about $62 Billion

A recent analysis of bitcoin addresses shows less than 1 % of addresses in Bitcoin network have a value of around $62 billion, and the wealthiest addresses belong to cryptocurrency exchanges, China’s state-run financial publication National Business Daily (NBD) reported Monday.

The report cited data from BTC.com to show that 22.65 million bitcoin addresses have at least some amount of the world’s largest cryptocurrency as of January 7 2018. Of those bitcoin However, of those, about 97.2 percent—or 22 million addresses own less than 1 bitcoin, and 0.7 percent have more than 10 bitcoin.

NBD took a closer look at the data and found 0.7 percent of bitcoin addresses control 86.9% of bitcoins in circulations, which is equal to roughly $ 62 billion based on bitcoin’s price this Monday. By comparison, 97.2 percent of addresses house only 4.6 percent of circulating bitcoin, which worth $3.2 billion.  

Although bitcoin addresses are transparent, irreversible and tamper-resistant, and the owners are mysterious. Each address can represent more than one individual person, and a typical example is a crypto exchange or wallet which hold digital tokens for different people. Further, it is natural that wealthiest Bitcoin addresses belong to crypto exchanges. In addition, a few retail investors or institutional investors who hold large amounts of bitcoins are known as whales.

The report indicated that the existence of “bitcoin whales” has become a worry for investors because they can manipulate the bitcoin market by buying or selling even a tiny portion of their holdings.

Research firm Chainalysis  released a report on December 19, revealing that only 37 percent of bitcoin addresses in its network are “economically relevant” , while 86% of those addresses belong to a named service such as an exchange or darknet market. The report said just 20% of  bitcoin transaction value is an economic transfer, and the remaining 80 percent is returned as change.

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