How Many Bitcoins Are Irretrievably Lost, and What Does that Mean?

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by Mish Shedlock, Mish Talk:

Let’s discuss the role and meaning of lost Bitcoins on future price actions.

How Many Bitcoins Will There Be?

The maximum number of Bitcoins is 21 million. But if 30 percent of them are lost the actual available supply of usable Bitcoins is 21 – (.3 * 21) = 14.7 million.

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That estimate is likely in the ballpark. Estimates of lost keys are generally 20 to 30 percent.

That would make the final actual available supply 14.7 million to 16.8 million, not 21 million.

How Many Remain to Be Mined?

There were 19,124,681 bitcoins in existence as of August 2022.

That means approximately 1,875,319 are left to be mined.

What Does This Mean?

One way of looking at things is there is less of a chance of a big wave of whale dumping if 30 percent of the coins are lost.

Another way of looking at things is that a big percentage of Bitcoin holders are underwater.

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