The Last 8 Years of Bitcoin in a Macro Context
A broad, unfiltered comparison of Bitcoin to other key market indicators since 2012.
*Note: the “Halvening” is the automatic 50% reduction in supply of new Bitcoin being issued on a daily basis. The next Halvening will occur in 2024.

BTC transactions per day
This simply shows the amount of interest in the BTC market—similar to trading volume. This statistic is up 10-fold since the first halvening. It is also important to note that there is a theoretical limit to the number of transactions for the network (but we’re not close to that yet).  

BTC unique wallets
This number is up over 1100 times what it was in 2012. The network is growing substantially, but there is still plenty of room on the upside.

BTC market capitalization
This is a fascinating number because it really shows that Bitcoin has become a real player in the assets market at over $170 billion, but it still has a long way to go to catch the FAANG stocks of Facebook ($656 billion), Apple ($1.5 trillion), Amazon ($1.33 trillion), Netflix ($195 billion), Google ($988 billion), or gold (around $5 to $10 trillion).

Fed balance sheet
The Federal Reserve is printing money and buying assets that are put on its balance sheet. Not all of the assets are necessarily worth what the balance sheet indicates. Theoretically, when the Fed prints money (inflating the money supply), the US dollar is devalued. As Bitcoin is actually deflationary, it may provide an interesting counter to a potential dollar decline.    

US national debt
This is growing, and growing and growing—it is up 50% since the first halvening. Once again, this may bode well for Bitcoin.

S&P 500 Index
The stock market has gotten a lot of publicity and the S&P is often the broad-based indicator that many follow to get a pulse on the economic strength of the US. This is actually fairly misguided, as can be seen by markets doing so well in the face of a pandemic, and some significant protests nationwide. But that is a topic for a different discussion. The point here is that the S&P has about doubled in the time that Bitcoin is up about 733 times.

Much of the recent gains in the stock market indexes can be attributed to the FAANG stocks, but even these tremendous gains fall far short of what Bitcoin has accomplished over the same time period.   

Bitcoin is often compared to gold or referred to as something akin to digital gold, so we included gold in our chart. It is fascinating to see that it has barely moved—although it dipped in 2016 and then recovered—since the first halvening. Bitcoin compares well in many ways to gold as there is a limited amount, but Bitcoin has a permanent cap set for the future at 21,000,000 and we have no idea how much gold will be mined and brought to market. 

Most expensive art sold
Expensive art is being bought at auction every year, and it seems (at least in 2012, 2016, and 2020) that there may be steady growth here, but Bitcoin still outperforms. 

Jeremy Epstein
Co-Chief Investment Officer, Crypto Futura Fund
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