MoneyLife

How Many People Own Bitcoin?

By Marc Guberti
how many people own Bitcoin

Bitcoin continues to gain popularity as the world’s largest cryptocurrency. The asset boasts a market cap near the $1 trillion mark and growing support from a wide range of investors. Bitcoin’s momentum has investors and spectators wondering how many people own Bitcoin? Read on to find out more!

How many Bitcoins are there?

While it’s hard to tell how many people own Bitcoin because of factors we will soon discuss, the cryptocurrency’s supply is a different story. Only 21 million Bitcoins exist in the world due to Bitcoin’s blockchain set-up. While some cryptocurrencies present investors with an unlimited supply, Bitcoin has a limited supply of available coins. This supply limit makes Bitcoin more desirable amongst its investors.

Bitcoin ownership factors 

We can assess several factors to estimate how many people own Bitcoin. Each element provides us with a closer glimpse into the number of Bitcoin investors. We will start by discussing Bitcoin addresses and wallets. You can review this cryptocurrency glossary to assist with understanding the definitions of essential crypto terms.

Bitcoin can be held in different addresses 

Many investors hold their Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in multiple places. These “places,” also known as addresses, allow an investor to store Bitcoin. Investors utilize multiple addresses to mitigate risks such as hackers and privacy protection. 

Most Bitcoin addresses only get used once between a sender and a receiver. Businesses accepting Bitcoin find themselves on the receiving end while customers find themselves on the sending end. The transaction takes place through a single address.

Many addresses and wallets

The nature of cryptocurrencies results in multiple addresses and wallets, making it difficult to tell how many people own Bitcoin. It’s not uncommon to find a Bitcoin trader with hundreds of addresses and multiple wallets to mitigate risk. 

Some services hold Bitcoin in a single wallet that belongs to many people, skewing the numbers. Some brokers buy large swaths of Bitcoin to disperse them amongst investors. Instead of providing investors with a wallet and key, these brokers hold onto the Bitcoin themselves and give customers equity into their Bitcoin wallet based on how much they buy. This approach allows people to get started with Bitcoin quickly, but if the broker’s account gets hacked, the investors also get affected.

The variety of cryptocurrencies combined with limited accessibility on popular platforms adds to the complexity. For example, many crypto platforms scrambled to enable users to trade Dogecoin once the cryptocurrency became wildly popular on the back of Musk’s social media tweets.

Not only do investors hold onto multiple wallets on multiple platforms, but they also hold hot and cold wallets. A hot wallet is an online wallet that is easier for conducting transactions. However, it is also easier to hack into that wallet. Cold wallets are offline, making them far more difficult for hackers to access. While cold wallets add an extra layer of protection to a crypto investor’s holdings, they muddy up the total number of wallets, making it more challenging to determine how many people own Bitcoin.

One address can belong to many people 

Some services will use a central address for transactions, enabling many customers to send payments using that same address. This structure allows for many people to own the same address. This loophole complicates the process of determining how many people own Bitcoin.

People don’t move Bitcoin off the exchange

Some Bitcoin investors buy the cryptocurrency for the long haul. They currently do not intend to purchase any items with their Bitcoin. Some of these investors leave Bitcoin on the exchange rather than putting it in a separate wallet. 

Most exchanges keep the majority of their Bitcoin holdings in cold wallets, lowering the risk of a potential hack. While some exchanges publicize the number of users on their platforms, this data does not correctly reflect how many people own Bitcoin. Some people create accounts on multiple exchanges and hold a wallet separate from those exchanges.  

Market size 

As the most prominent cryptocurrency, Bitcoin’s market cap hovers near $1 trillion. Knowing the market cap and the price of Bitcoin helps us determine the current circulation. If you divide the market cap by the price of Bitcoin, you will discover the total circulation of Bitcoin. 

For instance, if Bitcoin carries a $914B market cap, and each coin is worth $48,581, that gives us a market supply of roughly 18.83 million Bitcoin. We determine the market cap by multiplying the price of Bitcoin and the total supply of Bitcoin in circulation.

While this metric helps us determine the current supply, it does not specify how many people own Bitcoin due to the many factors we’ve discussed. 

Lost coins

Some investors lose their Bitcoin because they forget their private key. The private key is the only way to access your wallet. Losing that key is like losing the key to your house with no way to get a new one. While lost coins count as Bitcoins in circulation, they will never circulate in the crypto market unless the passwords get recovered. Investors also have a limited number of attempts before they get locked out of their fortunes. 

Where should you buy Bitcoin?

We’ve talked about the different elements that hinder our ability to determine how many people own Bitcoin. However, the MoneyLion team has created a crypto platform that removes the roadblocks preventing you from owning Bitcoin.

MoneyLion allows its members to buy, earn, and trade Bitcoin safely. MoneyLion’s Crypto Round-Up feature will enable members to grow their Bitcoin holdings with each purchase they make. Get started with a MoneyLion Crypto account today.

Join the Bitcoin investors family 

It’s hard to tell how many people own Bitcoin, but it’s easy to join them. Bitcoin is a popular asset approaching a $1 trillion market cap. Bitcoin is legal in many developed countries, and businesses worldwide enable customers to pay with Bitcoin.

A MoneyLion Crypto Account enables you to trade Bitcoin 24/7. The account provides you with access to Bitcoin and Ethereum, and the MoneyLion team is working hard to allow additional cryptocurrencies. Join the millions of Bitcoin investors today.

FAQs

Is Bitcoin a good investment?

Bitcoin is higher on the risk-reward scale. Some investors utilize the asset to diversify their portfolios.

Who invented Bitcoin?

Satoshi Nakamoto invented Bitcoin. Satoshi is a pseudonym for the true Bitcoin creators who remains a mystery.

Where can I buy Bitcoin safely?

You can buy Bitcoin safely on numerous exchanges including MoneyLion. Create a MoneyLion Crypto Account today to start investing in Bitcoin.

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