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Author Topic: Possible to check distribution of bitcoin holdings on the blockchain?  (Read 59 times)
hooty
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February 18, 2018, 04:00:47 PM
 #1

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?
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drachman
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February 18, 2018, 05:03:59 PM
 #2

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?
Everything is visible in the blockchain but it is not possible to do something like what you are suggesting, lets see an example, if I have 2 addresses with 1 bitcoin each and those address are not linked to each other then you may think those two addresses belong to two different people, but that is not the case, so there is not a way to know exactly how many users there are and how many coins each one holds in average.

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February 18, 2018, 05:18:07 PM
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Ah ha. Thanks!
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February 18, 2018, 05:24:45 PM
 #4

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?

You can get some statistics here.
https://bitinfocharts.com/top-100-richest-bitcoin-addresses.html

As drachman pointed out, there may be people with bitcoin spread across multiple addresses. There may also be exchanges and other aggregators who hold bitcoins of others in their addresses. So this may skew the data.


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February 18, 2018, 05:33:37 PM
 #5

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?

You can get some statistics here.
https://bitinfocharts.com/top-100-richest-bitcoin-addresses.html

As drachman pointed out, there may be people with bitcoin spread across multiple addresses. There may also be exchanges and other aggregators who hold bitcoins of others in their addresses. So this may skew the data.

Some people say that the data that is presented in Bitinfocharts is not 100% accurate because some people own multiple addresses.

I say it's 0% accurate, it's not only people who owns more then 1 address, it's exchanges, and organizations that holds their bitcoin in one address, so an address with X amount of bitcoins, doesn't mean that a single man own it, as an address with X amount of bitcoin doesn't mean that the owner of the address owns only this address.
You can't really conclude anything from that, it's useless info.


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February 18, 2018, 07:08:51 PM
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 #6

There are some companies (like bloq, founded by ex bitcoin developer Jeff Garzik) that will try to monitor the blockchain and track down who owns what. Jeff Garzik is possibly working for the NSA now or something like that. It could be a problem if mixers aren't strong enough.

For example, if Wikileaks accepts donations in a bitcoin address, everyone knows what Wikileaks owns:

https://blockchain.info/address/1HB5XMLmzFVj8ALj6mfBsbifRoD4miY36v

So we know they have received a total of: 4,042.08608062

Now everytime that Wikileaks sends money somewhere else, the person receiving it would know it's Wikileaks. This pretty much forces them to mix their coins before sending money, which means extra fees etc... it's a problem.

PS: I once tried to mix coins to test things out and now im afraid to sell these coins because I don't know where they came from, so if I wanted to buy a house for example, I couldn't use these funds because since they were mixed, who knows what the IRS (or the equivalent in your country) will say... when I realized this I stopped mixing coins since I have nothing to hide anyway, all my coins were obtained legally and at some point I would like to buy a house, but if you are Wikileaks you better be mixing your coins if you don't want to be saying "im Wikileaks" everytime you make a transaction.
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February 18, 2018, 07:14:37 PM
 #7

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?

Don't forget that although the blockchain is open for everyone to see, and correctly is possible to do what you are suggesting, the truth is that you can only do that if you can link one particular entity to all the addresses he uses. That is of course not easy to do, specially if the person in cause is careful.
It is possible to do though, and that's why bitcoin is not really a problem for money laundry or criminal activities. If their links are tracked, then the FBI etc would have access to all their transactions.
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February 18, 2018, 08:23:34 PM
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PS: I once tried to mix coins to test things out and now im afraid to sell these coins because I don't know where they came from, so if I wanted to buy a house for example, I couldn't use these funds because since they were mixed, who knows what the IRS (or the equivalent in your country) will say... when I realized this I stopped mixing coins since I have nothing to hide anyway, all my coins were obtained legally and at some point I would like to buy a house, but if you are Wikileaks you better be mixing your coins if you don't want to be saying "im Wikileaks" everytime you make a transaction.

I get your point, but if you think like that, then basically anything you withdraw from whatever centralized service might be something you don't want to be associated with. BTC-E is a great example of that. For years have I withdrawn coins from that exchange to my personal wallets, and sold some of them and spent some of them. It might very well have been the case that I (and thousands of other people) spent and sold coins coming from the MtGox theft. The main point of importance is that regardless of how much effort is being done to cover whatever shady practices, you at some point might have had, or still have, tainted coins. The only way to be sure that you have clean coins, is if you buy coin mint (i.e. freshly generated coins).
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February 18, 2018, 08:43:31 PM
 #9

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?


First of all man, why the hell would you even wanna know who holds how much bitcoins a person has in his possession? I mean, who would even wanna know something like that? Seriously. Do you wanna know this because you wanna know if the one holding the biggest amounts of bitcoins is already dumping? or is there any other reason? Anyways, even if someone is also like you and also wants that type of information, I really do not think that he or she would even do that, considering how much time, effort and resources is needed to conduct such research/task. Because clearly, anyone can own from 1 up to 20+ bitcoin addresses with each one having different amounts of bitcoins. And obviously, there is no way to see if they are connected unless they have been making lots of transactions with each other, but of course, that still cannot guarantee that those addresses are really owned by the same person.
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February 18, 2018, 09:10:55 PM
 #10

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?

It is not a chart that you will find the distribution of a cryptocurrency but through its transaction history. Yes you can find all the address in which transaction was made through the blockchain but it is really hard to know whether nore addresses are owned by one person or each address has different owner. I dont think its easy to trace people in the blockchain.

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February 18, 2018, 09:27:34 PM
 #11

So if bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are open for the world to see because of blockchain, are there any charts that show the "wealth distribution" of the coins? So if you wanted to determine that like 40% of the coins are held by 1 entity or if it is a lot more spread out than that? Is that research already done anyway? If so, where could I find it?
So far I think there hasn't been any research done to determine the distribution of bitcoin holdings on block chain and a chart about it doesn't exist. What I do know is that the information you are looking for can be easily seen on blockchain. There is also a list of top 10 addresses which owns the most bitcoin that is open for everybody to see.
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