- Per Blockchain.com data, 90% of bitcoins have now been mined and are in the open market.
- But due to halving schedules, the final 10% won’t fully reach the market until February 2140.
- Meanwhile, some 3.7 million bitcoins out of the total 21 million are still estimated to be “lost.”
As of Monday, 90% of all bitcoins have been mined, according to data from Blockchain.com, 12 years after miners acquired the first-ever bitcoins.
That means about 18.9 million coins out of the maximum supply of 21 million are now on the open market. But mining the final 10% isn’t expected to happen until February 2140, based on network estimates and bitcoin halving schedules, CoinDesk reported.
Bitcoin halving — which happens approximately every four years — is when the number of new bitcoins entering circulation shrinks.
The halving process will continue to make mining more challenging. Right now, miners receive about 6.25 bitcoin for every mined block, but this will drop by half in 2024.
Meanwhile, an estimated 20% bitcoin have been “lost,” meaning they can’t be retrieved. So it remains unlikely the open market ever sees a full 21 million coins in circulation.
On Monday, bitcoin slipped 5.8% to just below $48,000, continuing a recent downtrend. Last week, bitcoin dropped as much as 27%, with some investors pointing to technical readings as a reason to reduce exposure to cryptocurrencies.
Despite the recent sell-off, some crypto bulls still expect bitcoin to surge due to its value as an inflation hedge.