A Chronic Case of Bitcoin (Part 1)
Bitcoin Is Here To Stay. This Is What It Means.
Bitcoin turns a lot of concepts on their head. It does this so much that we have had to invent new words or phrases to describe it. Often these are opposites of words we are familiar with. We end up relying on words such as “permissionless”, “anti-fragile”, “unseizable”, decentralized, and “censorship-resistant”.
Let’s add another of these inversions. This time we’ll base it on the word ‘chronic’. This one will be much easier to understand than something like anti-fragile.
Chronic is defined as “persisting for a long time or constantly recurring”. It comes from the Greek word “khronos, ” which means time. While there is nothing inherently negative about the word chronic, it is almost always used to describe illness, giving it a negative connotation. This does not need to be the case though. Let’s dispense with that stigma. We don’t have to think of a “chronic illness” every time we hear the word “chronic”. We could think of its opposite instead — a chronic wellness.
Wouldn’t you like to be diagnosed with a chronic wellness for once? What might that look like?
Being informed of a chronic wellness would of course be a joyous occasion. However, you would still want your doctor to explain the condition so that you could take the appropriate steps to make the most of it. You would also want to know how to confirm you had the condition. You’d want to know the symptoms.
You might want to know how the condition could be expected to change over time. You would want to make appropriate changes to your life.
That imaginary example of a chronic wellness in your health is regrettably just fiction. I don’t want to get your hopes high about this notion of chronic wellness when it comes to your health. We’re all mortal after all.
I do, however, want to get your hopes up about our society. This is because it has contracted a seriously great case of a chronic wellness. Despite both America’s and our society’s many challenges, neither is destined to fail. Both can continue to adapt and improve. This can happen even when things look dark and desperate. The fact that humanity is still here is proof that we recovered from the darkest and most dangerous challenges we ever faced. We managed to overcome every obstacle even without having had a chronic wellness to empower us.
Let’s begin with the diagnosis and not mince our words, because this is serious— Seriously Good. You might want to sit down for this.
Or you might want to stand up and cheer.
You’ve caught a chronic case of Bitcoin. It’s spreading.
Nobody knows how to stop it. Your neighbors have it too. Every country in the world is catching it. But your case is already the most advanced in the world.
Don’t be alarmed now.
Bitcoin is a chronic wellness.
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet.
How can we be sure we have a chronic case of Bitcoin?
There are a number of ways of testing for this. They are very reliable methods, and a diagnosis of a positive case of it is 100% accurate. Here then are the results of these many of these tests.
It is important to point out we are still in the early stages of our case of Bitcoin, so while these results will show that we have it and that it is spreading, they will also demonstrate that it still has a long way to go.
We’ve been measuring how many Americans own bitcoin and the number is rising at an increasing rate. Bitcoin ownership is spreading throughout the population. Twelve years ago it was zero. Three years ago it had spread to 2% of Americans. Today it stands at 6%. That’s between 19 million and 20 million people! The last three years added twice as many new bitcoin holders as the first 9 years of bitcoin’s existence!
Two years ago 72% of Americans said they had no intention of owning Bitcoin. This year that number dropped to 58%. For investors under age 50, that number is only 38%—a minority of the population that is in line to inherit America’s wealth!
Furthermore, another 2% of Americans report that they plan to own Bitcoin in the near future.
What is a node? A Bitcoin Node is a complete replica of Bitcoin’s programming and its ledger (which is known as its blockchain). It constantly maintains the ledger with all new entries. It is not possible to tell the location of every node in the world, or to even count how many there are, because they can hide their location or even their very existence. However, a decent percentage of nodes do not hide their existence or location. We do know there are about 10,500 visible nodes.
Of all the world’s Bitcoin nodes that do make their location public, nodes in America represent 24.6% of the world’s total! America’s population is only 4.2% of the world.
If we divide the first figure by the second we get an index that shows penetration of Bitcoin nodes in America is 5.85 times higher per capita than the rest of the world. This shows how much more developed America’s case is than the world at large—almost six times as advanced.
America’s share of the Bitcoin mining energy is now estimated to be 17%, up from only 4% two years ago. And this too, with an emphasis on clean sources of energy, is growing rapidly.
The 5 publicly traded companies with the most Bitcoin on their balance sheets are all American. In 2019, none of them held any Bitcoin. Of the top 15 publicly traded companies with Bitcoin on their balance sheets, eight of them are American, and those 8 companies’ holdings represent 91.5% of the total Bitcoin held by those top 15 companies.
When it comes to exchange traded products, America has far and away the largest such fund, and in total accounts for 77% of all the Bitcoin held in such instruments worldwide!
Almost 853,000 Bitcoin are held in these publicly disclosed treasuries of American organizations. At a $50K price, that’s $42 Billion worth of Bitcoin.
This last test is perhaps the most important in determining the chronic nature of America’s case of Bitcoin. Do American’s have a fleeting relationship with their Bitcoins? Is it a fad? Will they drop their bitcoins for something else when the price drops or when the next new thing comes along?
We got to test this at the start of the pandemic in March 2020.
Bitcoin’s price fell to a low daily close of under $5,000 in March
when it had been trading about $10,000 for most of 2020.
Over 80% of bitcoin holders held through the dip. It was this conviction that drew major investors like Paul Tudor Jones to Bitcoin. He now holds 5% of his portfolio in Bitcoin. Up from 1% a year ago and 0% the year before.
There can be no doubt we’ve got a growing case of Bitcoin in America.
What is it that makes it Chronic? Stay tuned for “Chronic Case of Bitcoin” part 2.
In the meantime, if you’d like $10 in free Bitcoin just for signing up and starting a DCA plan with Swan Bitcoin click here!
This blog offers thoughts and opinions on Bitcoin from the Swan Bitcoin team and friends.
Tomer Strolight is Editor-in-Chief at Swan Bitcoin. He completed bachelors and masters degrees at Toronto’s Schulich School of Business. Tomer spent 25 years operating businesses in digital media and private equity before turning his attention full time to Bitcoin. Tomer wrote the book “Why Bitcoin?” a collection of 27 short articles each explaining a different facet of this revolutionary new monetary system. Tomer also wrote and narrated the short film “Bitcoin Is Generational Wealth”. He has appeared on many Bitcoin podcasts including What Bitcoin Did, The Stephan Livera Podcast, Bitcoin Rapid Fire, Twice Bitten, the Bitcoin Matrix and many more.
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Thoughts on Bitcoin from the Swan team and friends.