99% of all Bitcoins are stored in 1% of wallets
It is not always easy to assess the fortune of the world's largest billionaires. Their money is not stored on a deposit in the bank but is invested in enterprises, securities or real estate. Fortunately, this information is public, so analysts can approximately estimate the value of assets and compare it with previous periods in dynamics.
What makes cryptocurrency so different? To understand who has the most of Bitcoins, you need to know the address of the wallet of a particular person. But here the difficulty emerges. All wallets with their numbers are available, and you can even track every transaction that has come or left from the wallet up down to the minute. There is only one problem — nobody advertises the addresses of their wallets. There is no link to the phone number like in the messengers, and you don’t need a passport for registration.
It means that any person can have an unlimited number of wallets, and no one will know their owner as long as he or she doesn't' want to disclose his or her identity. But this is not all. Each wallet has several addresses, and transactions and balances are visible in the context of addresses, and that makes the process of identification even more complicated.
“You may find that 99% of wallets contain less than 0.1 BTC, but the reason why you may not be able to trust that is that of what is called HD wallets (hierarchical deterministic). This means that a new wallet address is generated for every transaction, but ends up going to the same actual wallet. Kind of like if you have multiple aliases for your email. It may look like separate email addresses, but it's actually one. So if you did find that most wallets have 0.1 BTC, this could be because you see multiple wallets, but they actually represent a single one. Jaxx.io (a popular bitcoin wallet) does this for example. So more and more wallets are becoming HD wallets,” says Chad Barraford, a founder and CEO of Cryptocades.
Jeff Koyen, President of 360 Blockchain, feels the same way. “Let's look at consolidation first. On the one hand, individual bitcoin whales (early miners, adopters, and investors) have certainly spread their holdings across multiple wallets. Maybe they've even moved them around to prevent hacks. On the other hand, what appears to be a single owner might be an exchange, accounting for millions of individuals. Except for Satoshi's fabled million-coin stash, we can't claim to precisely know who's holding what,” he said.
The information from the data of bitinfocharts proves the fact that there are still a lot of Bitcoins on crypto exchanges.
For example, on March 28 there are 340 thousand BTC summarily on cold wallets Bittrex and Bitfinex — this is 2% of the total mined volume. There are only 114 (out of 21 million) registered wallets with more than 10,000 BTC. There are 1653 of them with thousand BTC and above — it's still less than one-hundredth of a percent. Lucky people who collected at least 1 bitcoin account just over 3 percent. So, we can say confidently say that 99% of Bitcoins are focused on 1% of addresses.
Personalities of Bitcoin millionaires
And yet, who has got all the Bitcoins?
Navigating by the information in the network, we may suggest the TOP-3 leaders:
Satoshi Nakamoto. The legendary creator of Bitcoin now owns a million Bitcoins (6%), which are distributed among over hundreds of wallets. For all the time, they have remained there to stay there. They have never been sold or transferred to another address.
Tyler Winklevoss & Cameron Winklevoss. These twin brothers invested money in the cryptocurrency in 2013, and they don’t even think of selling it. There is about 1% in their wallets, that is approximately 150 000 BTC. At the same time, some publications write about 1.5 million Bitcoins for both of them.
Roger Ver. This scandalous person has got about 300 000 BTC (2%) on his account. Ver, who previously promoted Bitcoin, now switched to his hardfork — Bitcoin Cash and also buys it is.
As you have seen above, several people can pump and dump the market for as long as they wish, if desired. They can keep on buying and selling cryptocurrency from each other. If at least one of these players lost his confidence in Bitcoin, the rate would dump by tens of percent. However, there are no prerequisites for this yet.
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