… plus five other key takeaways from the December 2019 CoinShares mining report

Our latest mining report is out, and per usual we’ve summarised the key takeaways below for those pressed for time. The full report — which we do recommend reading — is available now:

If you’re just now arriving to the mining discussion, we skipped the introductory treatments of mining and Proof-of-Work on a conceptual level and refer readers to previous posts here and here.

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Highlights from the December 2019 mining report:

  1. Since our last report in June 2019, the Bitcoin hash rate grew more than 80% from approximately 50 Exahash per second (EH/s) to over 90 EH/s at the time of publication. …

It doesn’t take much to create FUD in the Bitcoin space, intentional or not. But before we get all worked up over scary graphs, let’s all sit down for a second and look at how things actually work.

Yesterday (and it seems to be continuing today even though the graphs have reverted to the mean), one after another, Twitter pundits and news outlets started posting worried remarks about the Bitcoin hashrate accompanied by some pretty stark-looking charts of the hashrate dropping hard, in some estimates by more than 50% in less than one week.

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(and this wasn’t even the worst estimate)

On the surface, one can understand the concern. Looking at the charts the numbers appear clear. One day the hashrate tops out at more than 120 EH/s and less than 10 days later it has dropped to 58 EH/s. …

CoinShares’ fourth biannual Crypto Report is available now, and with it, our customary “tl;dr” highlights below:

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  • For all the assets we covered (with the exception of XRP), the theme of the first half of the year was price despair, followed by bottoming out, and then strong recovery. After prices generally bottomed towards the end of Q1, some cryptoassets experienced quite spectacular recoveries.
  • Among the assets we covered, Litecoin has led the pack this year, rallying a spectacular 281% during the first two quarters. Bitcoin followed, clocking a 188% price gain, most of it in Q2. Ether’s recovery, at 103% was somewhat subdued compared to Bitcoin and Litecoin, but still strong by most standards. …

It’s that time of year folks!

The CoinShares Bitcoin Mining Report returns in its third iteration with another snacky treasure trove of updated figures, maps and sources.

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As always we do recommend reading the full report which can be found in all its un-summarised glory here.

Also, for those of you who are just arriving to the mining discussion — in this iteration we have skipped the introductory treatments of mining and Proof-of-fiWork on a conceptual level and instead refer readers to our previous work here and here.

As always, we remain cognisant of the brutal time pressures exerted on our beloved readers by the realities of modern life, so in the spirit of the internet age we have condensed our main findings in a convenient and accessible TL;DR…

The CoinShares Research H2 2018 Crypto Report is finally out, and per usual I’m posting a quick summary of the points we found most interesting about the second half of 2018:

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That sweet, sweet data.
  • Bitcoin prices finished off 2018 as its worst year on record in percentage terms. While prices have fallen further from peak to trough in previous cycles, the close alignment of the 2017 market peak to the end of the year caused the 73% annual drawdown to make overall 2018 price performance the worst in Bitcoin history.
  • The Ethereum hashrate fell by 35% over the course of Q3 and Q4. Litecoin fared even worse, with a total hashrate reduction of 41%. Out of our three PoW coins covered, only Bitcoin experienced growth in its hashrate, with an increase of 11% from July through December. While the hashrates of both Bitcoin and Litecoin have significantly recovered from their respective drawdowns, the Ethereum hashrate continues to fall. …

Bitcoin mining update — Part 2 of 2

If you’re reading this, then perhaps you’ve read the latest CoinShares Research report on the bitcoin mining network, my previous commentary on creation costs, or even better: both!

Or maybe you haven’t read either and came straight for the hot sauce.

Either way, at this point you probably haven’t missed it: the hottest narrative in the anti-Bitcoin playbook is the environmentalist attack on Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithms. Exhibit A:

Oh dear…

While it’s encouraging that Bitcoin detractors are clearly running out of ideas, it is nevertheless a powerful narrative — especially for younger generations whose future prosperity not only rests on the reintroduction of sound money, but also on a relatively benign global climate. …

Bitcoin mining update — Part 1 of 2

As a part of our ongoing effort to keep the crypto community knowledgeable on the inner workings and development of the Bitcoin mining network, CoinShares Research just published our latest Bitcoin Mining Report.

Much has happened since our first report in June. In fact, more than could be reasonably covered in a single Medium post, so I decided to break out some key takeaways into two posts.

This first is part ‘TL;DR’; part commentary on recent events; and part in-depth explanation of terms, methodology and the concept of Bitcoin creation costs.

The second summarizes our latest findings on the electricity mix of Bitcoin mining — a hotly contentious topic in its own right. …

The industry is in building mode and I love it. It almost even smells like a giant construction site. I kinda want a Bitcoin hard hat.

Institutions are building too, but they are huge, slow-moving beasts whose motions can seem imperceptible against the fury of the Bitcoin anthill. Don’t be fooled though, there is activity happening and their (not to mention their clients’) thirst for information is ever growing. Which brings us to the very topic of this post.

One of the next developments we foresee is the initiation and increased frequency of Bitcoin coverage by financial research desks. This will in turn necessitate the hiring or re-training of a new wave of Bitcoin analysts to fill these new requirements of skills and knowledge. …

It’s finally out!

Another half year past, another bear market endured — and hopefully survived — another wild ride on the crypto-rollercoaster! I’ve personally come to somewhat enjoy these periods, being strapped to the nosecone of a rocket ship can be exhausting and sometimes it’s nice with some “downtime” to get building and prepare for the next stage of the ride.

At CoinShares we’ve been busy doing just that and should the market decide to do its thing again, we’ll be ready. …

Hello Medium, I’m Christopher Bendiksen — I head up research at CoinShares; lately we’ve heard some rather unsubstantiated claims about the energy consumption / climate impact of the bitcoin network repeated through various media channels.

The volume of these claims has gotten too loud to ignore — so, we’ve written a comprehensively researched paper on the current state of Bitcoin mining network.

We intend for this to be the first iteration in a series of many such papers designed to keep the debate honest and — to the highest degree possible — based on facts.

In case you are pressed for time, here are 6 key…


Christopher Bendiksen

Head of Research at CoinShares

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