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It’s Not Just Institutional Thirst, Retail Demand For Crypto Reaches ‘Unprecedented’ Levels

There’s just not enough Bitcoin to meet demand.

That’s not just some hopium-based fantasy by the leader of a fringe crypto cult.

No, it’s simple fact from tallying just a couple places where Bitcoin can be bought.

We’ve reported that institutional money is moving into cryptocurrency assets, and that institutional demand is higher than it has ever been.

Retail demand is also currently at “unprecedented levels.”

Unprecedented levels

Israeli trading and investing platform Etoro warned customers in Europe on Friday of possible limitations on crypto purchasing over the weekend. In an email, the exchange said: “The unprecedented demand for crypto, coupled with limited liquidity, presents challenges to our ability to support buy orders over the weekend. In light of this, it may be necessary for us to place limitations on crypto buy orders.”

eToro’s statement acknowledging unprecedented demand is just one of many that point to the fact that there isn’t enough Bitcoin available at today’s prices to meet demand.

Pantera Capital’s recent monthly letter to investors states that:

In last month’s investor letter we discussed that after 30 months of operation, Square’s Cash App is estimated to be buying around 40% of all newly-issued bitcoin.

PayPal just launched their new service that enables customers to buy, sell, and hold cryptocurrency directly from their PayPal accounts. It’s already having a huge impact.

The bitcoin community is proud to have grown to 100 million users over twelve years. PayPal has 300 million active users. As we’ve argued — and will argue more fully in our December investor letter — this rally is much more sustainable than 2017. One of the main differences is the ease of investing in bitcoin now — via PayPal, Cash App, Robinhood, etc.

Previously the friction to buy bitcoin was pretty onerous: take a selfie with your passport, wait days to a week to get activated, daily limits.

Three hundred million people just got instant access to Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies.

BOOM! The results are already apparent.

PayPal’s crypto infrastructure provider is Paxos. Prior to PayPal’s integration of crypto, itBit, the Paxos-run exchange, was doing a fairly constant amount of trading volume — the white line in the chart below.

When PayPal went live, volume started exploding. The increase in itBit volume implies that within four weeks of going live, PayPal is already buying almost 70% of the new supply of bitcoins.

PayPal and Cash App are already buying more than 100% of all newly-issued bitcoins.

Only 900 New Bitcoins Created Each Day

Bitcoin supply is growing daily. Literally, it’s growing by 6.25 newly created Bitcoins with each new block mined. By design, one Bitcoin block is mined every 10 minutes, resulting in an average of 144 new blocks every day. 144 x 6.25 equals 900 new Bitcoins created each day.

Genuine Bitcoin Investor Demand

As we reported above, just Paypal and Cash App are responsible for buying more than 900 Bitcoin per day.

Let’s look at another rather obscure place to buy Bitcoin: LocalBitcoins.com. This is a site outside of the massive mainstream crypto exchanges. It is sort of a peer-to-peer classified ad site that matches buyers with sellers on an individual level.

Compared to the big exchanges, such as Coinbase, this site is tiny. For instance, Binance alone had a Bitcoin trading volume in the past 24 hours of $2.77 billion at press time.

Contrast that to the average daily trading of Bitcoin at localbitcoins.com which is a mere $6 million. The difference in size is staggering. The point being, trading volume at localbitcoins.com is a tiny, extremely tiny, amount of Bitcoin being bought each day.

Now, be aware that most of the trading volume on Binance and other big exchanges is just that: trading, not investing. A trader can buy and sell multiple times per day with each of those trades adding into the cumulative total trading volume.

On localbitcoins.com it is definitely not “traders” doing the trading, it is mom and pop type of people buying Bitcoin to hold as an investment.

So let’s look at the numbers. $6 million worth of Bitcoin are being bought right now every day on localbitcoins.com.

How many Bitcoin is that?

$6,000,000/$37,000 each equals 162 Bitcoin.

Remember, there’s only 900 being created. And this tiniest little peer-to-peer exchange is responsible for its users buying up almost 1/5 of all newly created Bitcoin each and every day. This is purely Bitcoin volume, and does not include other cryptos such as XRP and Litecoin.

Paypal and Cash App are already buying more Bitcoin than are being created each day. This tiny little site is facilitating the buying of nearly 20% of all new Bitcoin being create. What about the customers of Binance? What about demand from the customers of Coinbase, Gemini, Kraken, Bittrex, Bitstamp, Huobi, Bitfinex, and hundreds of other exchanges are are many times lager than localbitcoins? Where will all the Bitcoin come from for those buyers to be able to purchase?

Only Existing Holders Can Supply Bitcoin To Match Soaring Demand

One thing is certain, there is no way to increase the supply of new Bitcoin being created each day and available on the market. With demand absolutely overwhelming new supply, that only leaves existing holders willing to sell in order to satiate buyer demand.

Which means only one thing: prices will continue to be bid higher.

There’s good reason for the crypto fear and greed index to be pegged on greed.

How high is high? Here’s our Bitcoin forecast for this year and beyond.

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Gemini Unveils Plans For Credit Card With Crypto Rewards

Gemini, a crypto exchange and custodian, today announced that it will launch the Gemini Credit Card, a credit card with cryptocurrency rewards. This effort has been accelerated by the acquisition of Blockrize, a fintech startup that has been building a credit card with cryptocurrency rewards. In preparation for launch later this year, Gemini has opened the Gemini Credit Card waitlist — providing Gemini customers, and those already on the Blockrize waitlist, with early access.

By combining Gemini’s simple, reliable, and safe platform with Blockrize’s rewards program, card holders will be able to seamlessly earn up to 3 percent back in bitcoin, or other cryptos, on every purchase they make with the Gemini Credit Card.

“The Gemini Credit Card will make it easier for any consumer to invest in bitcoin and other cryptos without changing their existing behavior, ” said Tyler Winklevoss, CEO of Gemini. “Rather than deciding how and when to buy crypto, customers can do so when making their everyday purchases. We’re excited to welcome the Blockrize team to Gemini and work together to continue to mainstream crypto.”

Those who join the waitlist, and the more than 10,000 people already on the Blockrize waitlist, will get early access. The Gemini Credit Card will work like a traditional credit card. It will be available to U.S. residents in every state and will be widely accepted wherever major cards are accepted. Rewards will be automatically deposited into a cardholder’s Gemini account.

For Gemini users or others interested in signing up to the waitlist, please visit: https://gemini.com/credit-card/waitlist. To sign up for a Gemini account visit: https://exchange.gemini.com/register.

This is Gemini’s second acquisition, following its acquisition of Nifty Gateway in November of 2019. Gemini continues to look for companies that align with its values and mission to empower the individual through crypto.

About Gemini

Gemini Trust Company, LLC (Gemini) is a cryptocurrency exchange and custodian that allows customers to buy, sell, and store more than 30 cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ether, litecoin, and Zcash. Gemini is a New York trust company that is subject to the capital reserve requirements, cybersecurity requirements, and banking compliance standards set forth by the New York State Department of Financial Services and the New York Banking Law. Gemini was founded in 2014 by twin brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss to empower the individual through crypto.