Although they seem like a recent phenomenon, decentralized cryptocurrency was actually invented way back in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto.
In the last 10 years, cryptocurrency has grown in popularity so much that we are essentially living in a technological gold rush.
There are currently over 7,500 cryptocurrencies circulating at the moment, changing the way we view our finances, investments, the stock market and even everyday transactions.
In our article we’ll not only be breaking down the types of cryptocurrency, its history, and its impact on the environment, but also some eye-opening crypto statistics, as well as see what the future holds for crypto.
- What Are The Different Types Of Cryptocurrency?
- A Quick History Of Crypto
- Basic Crypto Stats And The Growth Of The Market
- Who Uses Crypto? The Statistics
- The Effect Of Crypto On The Environment: The Statistics
- Cryptocurrency And Tax: The Statistics
- How Secure Is Crypto? The Statistics
- What Impact Did Covid-19 Have On The Crypto Market? The Statistics
- What Is The Future Of Cryptocurrency?
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
What Are The Different Types Of Cryptocurrency?
Let’s start by taking a look at the different types of cryptocurrency.
Asset-backed tokens can be thought of as a digital version of IOUs. Their value is derived from a physical asset like art, gold, or physical money. You can claim this asset from the issuer by sending them a token.
Any asset with a physical property can be turned into an asset-baked token, with assets like crude oil and gold often being used for asset-backed tokens.
These tokens represent equity in the underlying asset, like a company’s stock or property equity, with terms stated on the blockchain.
This is a lot like owning traditional stocks, except you register this asset on the blockchain rather than with a certificate or on a database like you would with physical stocks.
You can buy regular shares in PayPal and Tesla as tokens via the blockchain. Like any company shareholder, you can also vote using tokens available on the blockchain.
Intrinsic tokens are also known as ‘built-in’ or ‘native’ tokens, and are digital versions of currency that only have as much value as the market dictates.
They’re not representative of anything like equity tokens or asset-backed tokens, rather, they’re just currency. Bitcoin and Ethereum are two of the most popular tokens.
With utility tokens you can raise funds to create new cryptocurrency projects, and normally serve a specific purpose for the developer.
They are normally used to raise funds, but they can also be used to provide access to different services and products. You can’t own an asset with a utility token, unlike an equity token.
Examples of utility tokens include Basic Attention Tokens which are used for payments in publishing systems, and Golem Tokens which allow you to rent systems that power computers.
A Quick History Of Crypto
Cryptocurrency arose during the recession of 2019 as people became wary of the powers of central banks and people came up with ways to decentralize money.
Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency to be developed, and the first transaction using Bitcoin was for two pizzas.
Bitcoin’s initial value was lower than a penny, but it eventually reached a high of $70,000.
Basic Crypto Stats And The Growth Of The Market
Despite being in circulation for over a decade, it’s only recently that we’ve seen cryptocurrency have a massive impact on the financial world.
The Covid-19 pandemic skyrocketed changes that were already taking place, and cryptocurrencies became more widespread. Let’s take a look at some interesting statistics about the growth of the cryptocurrency market.
From December 29, 2021, the capitalization of the global cryptocurrency market was valued at $2.21 trillion.
A month earlier, it reached over £3 trillion, which was six times the value of the previous year at $580 billion. During this spike, tokens like Bitcoin and Ethereum increased by more than 30% in a month.
Between 2013 and November 2021, the amount of global cryptocurrencies increased from 66 to 7,600.
While cryptos like Bitcoin, Binance Coin, Ethereum, and XRP are very popular and widely-used, they only make up a small number of the cryptocurrencies available today.
Most cryptocurrencies are not widely traded, but some of them are definitely having an impact on the global economy.
From December 2021, Bitcoin held a dominant market share of 40%, following a 4-year high of a 69% dominant market share in January of that year.
Bitcoin was the first decentralized digital currency on the blockchain, and because of this it is the most trusted cryptocurrency by investors, causing its value to increase.
Ethereum, meanwhile, has a 20% dominant market share.
There are over 30,000 cryptocurrency ATMs in the world.
After growing by nearly 120% in 2020, the number of cryptocurrency ATMs increased from 14,000 to 34,000 between January 2021 and December 2021.
Bitcoin in particular has allowed cryptocurrencies to become more widely available in ATMs and more mainstream.
Naturally, cryptocurrency ATMs are different from traditional ATMs. While standard ATMs let bank customers deposit and withdraw funds from a bank account, Bitcoin ATMs let you buy cryptocurrency using a cash deposit.
These tokens are then sent to a digital wallet using a QR code.
In May 2021 the cryptocurrency daily trading volume peaked at $500 billion before averaging to $120 billion daily.
While it’s important to understand the market capitalization of cryptocurrency, one of the most crucial stats of cryptocurrency is the daily trading volume index.
Making transactions with cryptocurrency is private, quick and with little to no fees, which gives them the edge over traditional bank transfers. It’s because of the advantages of cryptocurrency that millions of crypto transactions take place daily.
From December 2021 there were more than 300 cryptocurrency exchanges with a total daily volume reaching £300 billion.
One reason why cryptocurrency has seen such a huge boom in popularity is how accessible it is to trade on global exchanges. There are currently over 300 crypto exchanges that trade approximately $300 billion every day.
Who Uses Crypto? The Statistics
While it can be hard to conceptualize the huge market capitalization and monetary transaction value of cryptocurrencies, we can easily see the popularity of cryptocurrency when we consider how many people are using crypto.
The rise of peer-to-peer trading platforms and retail investors have also led to a huge spike in people investing in crypto for the first time. So let’s take a look at these incredible stats.
In the past decade, the number of blockchain wallet users increased to 80 million.
Blockchain and digital wallets are important tools for crypto owners as this is where their tokens are held.
The amount of blockchain wallets available soared over the decade, and this statistic paints a very clear picture of how crypto has risen in popularity and how widely it is being used as a payment method.
Nigeria, the Philippines, and Vietnam are the three countries with the highest number of cryptocurrency users.
Another thing that makes cryptocurrency so unique is that it provides crypto users who live in countries with volatile currencies a secure and legitimate way to make transactions.
Most crypto users live in budding economies such as India, Nigeria, the Philippines, Turkey, and Vietnam.
Nearly 50% of Americans aged between 18 and 29 have used cryptocurrency or traded it.
While only 16% of adults in the US have used, owned, or traded cryptocurrencies, nearly 50% of adults aged 18-29 have invested in cryptocurrency.
Breaking down the demographics further, 80% of the crypto community is male, over half are under the age of 35, more than 80% have a Bachelor’s degree, and over 35% earn more than $100k.
You can use cryptocurrency in more than 30% of small businesses in the US.
While analyzing how people use or trade in cryptocurrency gives us an insight into the prevalence of cryptocurrency, it’s also important for us to see how businesses are adapting.
Over a third of small-businesses now accept payments made with cryptocurrency, with Bitcoin and Ethereum being the most popular. But not all businesses are readily adopting cryptocurrency.
According to half of small-business owners they are not yet adopting cryptocurrency due to market volatility.
As well as market volatility, other reasons that businesses are reluctant about adopting cryptocurrency are because of the risk associated, not enough governmental support in implementing cryptocurrency, being unable to pay employees in cryptocurrency, and simply a lack of knowledge about cryptocurrencies.
The most crypto-friendly cities in the world are Chicago and Los Angeles.
Crypto is considered by some to be the currency of the future, due to the quick and seamless transactions you can make without any real fees. However, society needs to put the structures in place to make the dream of adopting crypto as a viable everyday currency possible.
While a few US cities have already begun paving the way for a wider use of cryptocurrency with cryptocurrency ATMs, and restaurants and stores accepting crypto, Chicago and LA are definitely leading the way with this.
The Effect Of Crypto On The Environment: The Statistics
Although cryptocurrency is making waves in the world of finance, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t drawbacks associated with cryptocurrency, and arguably the biggest drawback is the impact crypto – and the technology that powers it – has on the environment.
Cryptocurrencies have changed the way we think about our daily transactions and have made trading more accessible.
How cryptocurrency is produced is a big source of controversy because of how much energy is required to make it possible.
Cryptocurrency is ‘mined’ on decentralized computer networks that serve the purpose of a ledger.
This ledger monitors every cryptocurrency transaction, and the computers on the network verify and process every transaction via the blockchain database.
It’s helpful to imagine this as a receipt that keeps a record of every transaction made using crypto.
When these transactions are verified and processed, more bitcoins will be mined and added onto the receipt, adding another block to the chain.
Mining cryptocurrency takes a lot of sophisticated and powerful computers, and a huge amount of electricity. According to a study by Columbia University, Bitcoin uses around 150 terrawatt-hours of electricity annually.
To put that into perspective, that is more electricity used in Argentina that has a population of 45 million.
One crypto transaction uses as much electrical energy as just under 1.5 million Visa transactions.
Every time you trade cryptocurrency, make transactions with crypto coins, or deposit cash in a Bitcoin ATM you’re using over 2,100 kilowatt-hours of electricity.
To put that into perspective, this is the same amount of energy that the average US household uses over a 72-day period.
Bitcoin produces around 22.5 million metric tons of CO2 emissions annually.
As well as the staggering amount of electricity required to mine and trade cryptocurrency, it also produces around 22 to 22.9 million metric tons of carbon dioxide annually.
Cryptocurrency And Tax: The Statistics
It wasn’t possible for government tax agencies to monitor cryptocurrencies when they were first developed.
After all, one of the most notable things about transactions made on the blockchain is the anonymity, meaning the identity of the buyer or seller couldn’t be easily identified.
However, in 2014 the IRS now treats cryptocurrency as property for federal income tax purposes.
While the agency is yet to publish official estimates, Barclays has reported that the IRS is missing around $50 billion annually due to taxes that have to be paid on assets acquired by cryptocurrency.
Purchasing and owning cryptocurrency isn’t considered taxable, however. This means you can purchase and own the crypto as long as you want and as long as it’s stated on our tax return.
However, once you sell your crypto you are required to report any profits or losses you’ve made.
How Secure Is Crypto? The Statistics
While Bitcoin isn’t exactly the first form of digital currency ever created, it was the first cryptocurrency to be powered by blockchain technology which made recording of crypto transactions faster, more secure, and less likely to be interfered with.
There are many layers of security to blockchain technology, allowing Bitcoin to operate as a safe-to-use currency. However, there are still some startling statistics about the security of cryptocurrency.
After all, not even cryptocurrency can escape the clutches of cyber criminals.
Cryptojacking rose by nearly 30% and led to an $82 million loss in 2020.
Coined in 2017, cryptojacking describes a cyberattack targeting a computer by using it to mine cryptocurrencies without the permission of the user.
Although the shutdown of Coin Hive in 2019 led investors to believe that cryptojacking was no longer a concern, cyberattacks of stolen crypto have risen to nearly 30% in 2021.
Global theft of crypto totaled a $681 million loss in 2021 and nearly 80% of major hacks were related to decentralized finance.
Due to improvements in security and the introduction of cybersecurity measures, cryptocurrency theft and fraud cases have dropped over the last two years. Still, crypto hacks – particularly in relation to decentralized finance – continue to cause losses of almost $700 million.
Crypto investors who fell prey to scams have a median loss of almost $2,000 between October 2020 and May 2021.
The Federal Trade Commission has released statistics that lay bare the extent of how much money can be lost in crimes related to cryptocurrency.
From the dates above, the median loss of cryptocurrency theft and fraud was nearly $2,000 on average.
More than 8,000 cryptocurrency scams occurred in the US in 2020.
The most common scams investors fall prey to are:
- Being lured by an initial coin offer, or ICO, for scam crypto that will be dropped in months or even days.
- So called pump-and-dump schemes that lead the price of a cryptocurrency to soar before immediately plummeting in hours.
- Account hacks.
A notable crypto scam that occurred in 2021 involved a coin called ‘Squid’ inspired by the hit Netflix drama ‘Squid Game.’
20-49 year old investors are five times more likely to be the victims of crypto scams than any other age demographic.
Any investor can fall victim to a crypto scam, but as cryptocurrency is so popular with younger adults who may not have a lot of experience in the world of investing, it makes sense that this age range is also more likely to fall prey to crypto scams.
Around 70% of crypto traders in the UK under the age of 40 falsely believe that there are regulations to cryptocurrency.
There are many benefits to investing in cryptocurrency. It’s an exciting new way to invest as each new token has limitless potential. But it also comes with a lot of risks, especially because cryptocurrency is an incredibly volatile asset.
In many countries cryptocurrency is unregulated, meaning that investors and traders have no protection against theft, fraud, or scams.
However, it’s been reported that almost 70% of crypto traders in the UK did not know this, and believed cryptocurrency was regulated.
What Impact Did Covid-19 Have On The Crypto Market? The Statistics
In times of global economic crisis, investors often search for different types of investment, and it’s no surprise they were so drawn to cryptocurrency as the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
After all, Bitcoin was created in 2009 following the 2008 Lehman crisis, and in March 2020 when the pandemic caused a market crash all over the world, crypto soared.
The global cryptocurrency market has soared by 900% since March 2020.
It has been reported that many millennials turn to cryptocurrency during periods of economic crisis.
Due to how easy it is to access trading platforms, people are investing for the first time, and millions of first-time investors flocked to cryptocurrency in 2020. This has caused a mind-blowing 900% growth in the crypto market.
The price of Bitcoin increased from $6,000 to $60,000 within 12 months following the Covid-19 pandemic.
When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, investors were looking to alternative assets to invest in, namely cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin was the most trusted form of cryptocurrency as it had been around the longest, and the interest shown in Bitcoin increased its value from $6,000 to $60,000 over the course of a year.
Over 10 million Americans opened a new brokerage account in 2020.
Statistics released by Deloitte found that the emergence of retail trading platforms like Coinbase and Robinhood led to a huge rise in people getting into investing in crypto.
Coupled with the economic uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, this has led millions to consider non-traditional strategies of investment.
The largest crypto trading platform in the US, Coinbase, hit 6.1 million users in 2021.
Coinbase is not only the largest crypto retail trading platform in the US, but the most trusted too, and they saw a massive rise in users in 2020.
In that year, their user base went from 1 million to 2.8 million, and in the first quarter of 2021 their user base reached 6.1 million users.
What Is The Future Of Cryptocurrency?
It’s important to remember that while cryptocurrency is undeniably exciting, cryptocurrency and the technology that powers it are still new and their full potential is yet to be discovered.
Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology is changing the world, not just in the financial sphere, but even in global healthcare and the supply chain.
Of course, it’s impossible to see into the future, but let’s take a look at some interesting statistics that can tell us a lot about the future of cryptocurrency.
Nearly 30% of Americans are supportive of Bitcoin becoming legal tender.
The first country to officially recognize Bitcoin as legal tender was El Salvador in September 2021.
More countries hope to follow in their footsteps, and nearly 30% of Americans support Bitcoin becoming legal tender.
The cryptocurrency is expected to grow at a rate of almost 13% annually until 2030.
The cryptocurrency market has grown at a phenomenal rate over the past year and a half, and as investing in cryptocurrency becomes more popular, and using cryptocurrency becomes easier, the global market for cryptocurrencies is predicted to keep growing at a rate of 13% until 2020.
Almost 30% of investors believe that cryptocurrency becoming regulated will only increase its value, significantly reduce the risk of scams, and decrease volatility.
In a lot of countries, cryptocurrencies and transactions using crypto are unregulated. Although some might find that liberating, and appreciate the privacy this provides, it can also make crypto a very risky investment with high volatility.
More countries are trying to regulate the crypto market, which is supported by 30% of investors as they believe it will increase the value of cryptocurrency.
Over 100 countries have legalized cryptocurrency, while over 50 countries have banned (or practically banned) trading in cryptocurrency.
There are many cryptocurrency statistics that prove that cryptocurrency can be a viable form of currency. However, cryptocurrencies are illegal in over 50 countries.
For example, China banned cryptocurrency in 2021.
15% of cryptocurrency investors and over 20% of potential investors are wary of an institution regulating crypto
Although there are lots of benefits to the regulation of cryptocurrency, such as lowering volatility and cutting out scams, 15% of investors in cryptocurrency are currently wary of any government regulating cryptocurrency and would like it to stay unregulated.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Many Crypto Users Are There?
Currently there are around 300 million people using cryptocurrency. The amount of traders actively trading crypto rose to nearly 200% between 2018 and 2019, and this figure is only rising.
What Is The Average Amount of Bitcoins For A Person To Have?
Currently there are around 106 million Bitcoin owners, who own around 90% of the 21 million bitcoin tokens available, so the average Bitcoin owner has 0.178301887 BTC.
So there you have it! The most eye-opening cryptocurrency statistics for 2022, that show just what impact cryptocurrency is having on the stock market and the world at large.
Although the future of cryptocurrency is bright and its influence continues to grow, what long-lasting effect it will have on the world’s economy remains to be seen.
Paul Martinez is the founder of BendingDestiny.com. He is an expert in the areas of finance, real estate, and eCommerce.
Join him on BendingDestiny.com to learn how to improve your financial life and excel in these areas. Before starting this blog, Paul built from scratch and managed two multi-million dollar companies. One in the real estate sector and one in the eCommerce sector.