How many Bitcoins are there? In circulation, lost bitcoin and more
Many people buy Bitcoin, not only because of its value, but also because they are scarce. Especially, when you find out that not all mined Bitcoin are still in circulation. That’s because a lot of Bitcoin are simply lost.
How many Bitcoins are there?
21 million BTC is the maximum and not all BTC are in circulation. Currently, almost 18.5 million Bitcoins have been mined, and the total flow of new coins is halved every four years. The last Bitcoin is expected to be mined in the year 2140 and no new Bitcoins will be mined after that. This is hard coded in the algorithm and could theoretically only be changed if more than 51% of the miners agree.
Not all mined coins can be actively traded, because a reasonable number of Bitcoin are lost.
How many Bitcoins have been lost?
Many people in the crypto world are curious about the number of Bitcoins that have been mined and are lost. According to a recent study by Chainalysis, about 4 million bitcoins have been lost and cannot be recovered. These are no longer in circulation, but are included in the total number of coins that have been mined.
So of the more than 18 million BTC that have been mined, only 14 million remain. This includes coins that have been lost due to losing the private keys, the 1.1 million BTC of Satoshi and due to the death of a wallet owner.
- 1.1 million BTC owned by Satoshi.
- 8.900 BTC lost by a Bitcoin Talk user.
- 7.500 BTC lost by a thrown away hard drive, in 2021 he offers around $71m to find his hard drive.
- 1.000 BTC lost by the death of the QuadrigaCX CEO.
- 533 BTC lost by a Reddit user.
- 2.100+ BTC are sent to this burn address.
How many Bitcoin can be mined?
In the next 100 years, more than 3 million BTC can be mined (depending on when you read this).
Given that so many coins have been lost in the past, many more will disappear in the future. The number of bitcoin that will be lost is likely to decrease significantly, as investors become more and more responsible. Also, Bitcoin is much more valuable now, than it was 4 years ago.
In case you are wondering what will happen to the lost Bitcoin. Lost coins will stay at the Bitcoin address forever, as it is are the keys that have gone lost. In this case, the coins are nobody’s property and remain unclaimed on the network.
How many BTC is currently owned by exchanges?
The table below shows you the current amount of Bitcoin owned by the biggest crypto exchanges in the world, including the percentage of all Bitcoin in circulation.