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Author Topic: BTC is scarcer than gold.  (Read 1059 times)
virtualdn
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May 17, 2022, 12:32:24 PM
 #1

244,000 metric tons of gold has been discovered to date, 55,000 tons of gold are left.

But there is still a lot of gold left in the universe. There is gold on asteroids for example. One day these will be minable. So the gold supply is not as limited as some may think.

However, gold is hard to move around, weighs a lot, it's hard to sell or buy, it's not practicable.

With BTC it's another story. We all know there are only 21,000,000 coins and 3-4 millions are already lost forever.

There is no Bitcoin in the whole Universe, except on Planet Earth.

BTC is scarcer than gold. I think one day 1 BTC will enter the $xxx,xxx zone then the $x,xxx,xxx HODL BTC

1 BTC = 1 BTC
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May 17, 2022, 12:37:12 PM
 #2

While this is of course true I think it’s important to note that there are many more differences when it comes to comparing bitcoin and gold. Personally I can’t stand this comparison and don’t understand why so many people are so quick to compare the two. Gold is a physical asset, a metal, and used for a lot more things than bitcoin is, such as use in cars, electronics, jewelry etc.

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virtualdn
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May 17, 2022, 12:38:48 PM
 #3

While this is of course true I think it’s important to note that there are many more differences when it comes to comparing bitcoin and gold. Personally I can’t stand this comparison and don’t understand why so many people are so quick to compare the two. Gold is a physical asset, a metal, and used for a lot more things than bitcoin is, such as use in cars, electronics, jewelry etc.

To be honest jewelries are the only real usage I see for gold myself. I suppose we can't wear a BTC as a necklace.

1 BTC = 1 BTC
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May 17, 2022, 12:40:22 PM
 #4

We all know there are only 21,000,000 coins and 3-4 millions are already lost forever.
Lots are lost, but much less than 3-4 million and only a fraction of those are provably lost. So, in the far future, they can re-enter the circulation. Especially the early P2PK outputs that have revealed their public key; those are likely to be accessed with quantum computing overtime.

I can’t stand this comparison and don’t understand why so many people are so quick to compare the two.
It's simple. Both have store-of-value characteristics. You don't compare them as metals nor as "networks", but as hard money.

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May 17, 2022, 01:00:38 PM
 #5

This graph shows the world production of gold:



You can see how it's clearly not scarce.

Bitcoin, on the other hand, is designed to be scarce. There's now only less than 10% left to be mined, ever.

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May 17, 2022, 01:03:11 PM
Merited by mk4 (1)
 #6

But there is still a lot of gold left in the universe. There is gold on asteroids for example. One day these will be minable. So the gold supply is not as limited as some may think.
Because of the large mass of gold existence even on only earth, gold is considered not to have a limited supply.

BTC is scarcer than gold. I think one day 1 BTC will enter the $xxx,xxx zone then the $x,xxx,xxx HODL BTC
Definitely, but gold is still a safe haven asset, and have the highest marketcap of all assets in the world. Although, I can not go for gold when bitcoin is existing.

While this is of course true I think it’s important to note that there are many more differences when it comes to comparing bitcoin and gold. Personally I can’t stand this comparison and don’t understand why so many people are so quick to compare the two. Gold is a physical asset, a metal, and used for a lot more things than bitcoin is, such as use in cars, electronics, jewelry etc.
This is just like the Peter Schiff argument. Yes, gold is used for a lot of things like jewelries and the likes, but who cares when it comes to giving good return. If I invest on bitcoin I expect more return than gold, yet the investment is easy for me because I can do it with nobody knowing I am even investing in bitcoin, unlike gold that is physical, I can buy and hold bitcoin right from my home.

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May 17, 2022, 01:04:24 PM
 #7

While this is of course true I think it’s important to note that there are many more differences when it comes to comparing bitcoin and gold. Personally I can’t stand this comparison and don’t understand why so many people are so quick to compare the two. Gold is a physical asset, a metal, and used for a lot more things than bitcoin is, such as use in cars, electronics, jewelry etc.

And gold being physical is more of a flaw than an advantage, imo (security, portability, divisibility, etc) — and I'm pretty sure a lot of the more younger folks would agree. I used to think that gold being physical is a huge advantage, until I became more and more financially literate throughout the years and I want less and less physical stuff and I'm more interested in digital intangible stuff(bitcoin, stocks, etc).

This is just like the Peter Schiff argument. Yes, gold is used for a lot of things like jewelries and he likes, but who cares when it comes to giving good return. If I invest on bitcoin I expect more return than gold, yet the investment is easy for me because I can do it with nobody knowing I am even investing in bitcoin, unlike gold that is physical. I can buy and hold bitcoin right from my home.

Not to mention that gold's physical use is just a small percentage. Most of it's 'use' is for bragging rights or to "flex" — to show that you have some money. And obviously it's scarcity, which bitcoin is better at.

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May 17, 2022, 01:15:23 PM
Merited by stompix (2), BlackHatCoiner (2), Poker Player (1)
 #8

I don’t know which formula is used by those who give estimates of how much gold is still underground, but I hope it’s not something similar to what led us to speculate that 3-4 million BTC was lost. By this, I mean that this number is the result of an analysis that concluded that all the BTC that did not move x years was lost.

However, gold is hard to move around, weighs a lot, it's hard to sell or buy, it's not practicable.

It depends on the quantities, but I don't see a problem in transporting 1 kg of gold or a little more than that, it fits in an ordinary handbag - and it's worth 2 BTC at the moment. As for selling gold, I personally have no problem with that, there is a physical store on every corner that buys gold, or I can even sell gold by sending it by a special courier service to a company that buys gold.

Of course, I have no doubt that Bitcoin has its practicality when it comes to storage and transfer, but not everything is so impractical when it comes to gold. Still, I speak from my personal experience, it may be really difficult for someone to buy or sell gold, but for some, the problem is how to buy or sell Bitcoin - I have witnessed this many times.

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May 17, 2022, 01:27:03 PM
 #9

Norway doesn't even have gold reserves anymore because, according to them, it's not a great investment. They only kept a few historical gold bars:

The background to the sale is that gold only accounted for just over one per cent of the Bank's international reserves, and thus contributed little towards diversifying the risk associated with the reserves. The return on gold has historically been low.

This story also shows how inconvenient it is to have a large amount of gold:

Quote from: =https://www.norges-bank.no/en/news-events/news-publications/Press-releases/2004/2004-01-28T09-11-39fgenhtml/
Excluded from the sale are seven gold bars that have been used for exhibition purposes and a large number of gold coins that were transported to England when Norway was attacked in 1940.

There are countless of examples of how inconvenient it is to transport and make sure you have real gold instead of fake gold:

Over $2bn of loans may have been backed by fake gold, finds corruption probe.

Gold just feels like such an ancient method to store value. Bitcoin is so much better in pretty much every way.

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May 17, 2022, 01:34:35 PM
 #10

To be honest jewelries are the only real usage I see for gold myself. I suppose we can't wear a BTC as a necklace.
Lol... I guess we would have seen musicians with them BTC teeth.  Grin

Well, BTC and gold have got lots of differences and similarities too. More notably, we could say BTC is indid following the gold path. In the senses that, it started as money but its lack of proper used case has made it more of an asset. Gold stands an asset now which ever form it is found. You could resell when ever and still get the value.

Looking at scarcity, with bitcoin been held by only a handful of individuals, it is indeed scares and not at its fullest yet as, the demand on it is only within a few for now but, would be more in time and so would the price appreciation be at the apex.

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May 17, 2022, 01:48:50 PM
 #11

244,000 metric tons of gold has been discovered to date, 55,000 tons of gold are left.
With BTC it's another story. We all know there are only 21,000,000 coins and 3-4 millions are already lost forever.

How do you even compare the scarcity of those two things?
It's one BTC against a ton of gold, a kilo an ounce, or a milligram of gold against one satoshi?
What is scarcer, 0.002 BTC or 300 grams per living human?

Also, I find it weird to mention the remaining supply, for gold is ~20% and for Bitcoin is ~10%, that's not such a huge difference, and if we talk about lost coins, shouldn't we take about lost gold also? Tons of jewelry are lost each year, gold that can't be recycled after being used in components, or is simply not worth recycling due to the quantities.

I never understood this competition between bitcoin and gold, each has its own pro and cons, bitcoin does a lot of things better than gold but at the same time, it can't be used in tens of cases where gold simply rules. If it weren't like that gold wouldn't be worth a penny now, but, well, it does!





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May 17, 2022, 01:55:25 PM
 #12

Yes bitcoin is more scarce than gold. That's a true statement! But  if you look at the acceptability of Gold and bitcoin, gold is a clear winner. Scarcity alone doesn't make something costlier. It has be adopted and accepted widely. That's how you can bet on its future value.

Bitcoin is a very new asset class compared to gold. It has a long way to go! So instead of drawing a comparison between these two assets, let's help in bitcoin adoption.

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May 17, 2022, 02:02:47 PM
 #13

There's always the unstoppable comparison between bitcoin and gold. I agree with the argument that bitcoin is scarcer than gold and the fact that it's near to the supply limit but, it will take a hundred years before the last bitcoin is mined.
But the world isn't yet ready for its massive adoption or if it does, we're already starting to see that progress. I'd say that bitcoin is a more convenient asset class than gold.

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bittraffic
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May 17, 2022, 02:15:29 PM
 #14

Yes bitcoin is more scarce than gold. That's a true statement! But  if you look at the acceptability of Gold and bitcoin, gold is a clear winner. Scarcity alone doesn't make something costlier. It has be adopted and accepted widely. That's how you can bet on its future value.

Bitcoin is a very new asset class compared to gold. It has a long way to go! So instead of drawing a comparison between these two assets, let's help in bitcoin adoption.

As of now the acceptability of BTC is  not too wide. If its the basis for the comparison, gold is prbably preferred.

Thew world.however is preparing to go digital which if currencies will be back to gold standard like what China and Russia plans to be. I think digital currencies backed by gold and BTC will be accepted as medium of exchange.

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May 17, 2022, 04:50:00 PM
 #15

You can see how it's clearly not scarce.

Bitcoin, on the other hand, is designed to be scarce. There's now only less than 10% left to be mined, ever.
Gold at least is for sure more scarce than other metals/resources. I remember when they were saying we were running out of oil and then they kept discovering more and more deposits, without even mentioning diamonds that are one of the biggest lies ever.

People sooner or later will get more used to bitcoin as something that is digitally scarse, I understand that for the moment may be something difficult to understand/accept.

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May 17, 2022, 05:20:58 PM
Last edit: May 17, 2022, 05:55:34 PM by Charles-Tim
 #16

Also, I find it weird to mention the remaining supply, for gold is ~20% and for Bitcoin is ~10%, that's not such a huge difference, and if we talk about lost coins, shouldn't we take about lost gold also? Tons of jewelry are lost each year, gold that can't be recycled after being used in components, or is simply not worth recycling due to the quantities.
I believe many lost gold would be found, just in my opinion.

I am also surprised for someone to compare the gold that has been mined when the earth if full of gold and there are hard to reach place for mining gold like earth crust. If what I have read in the past is true, the gold in the earth crust can cover the whole surface of the earth in 4 meters thick. If the earth crust is not possible to reach or humans can not advanced technology to, to mine gold, how about the gold under water, under the ocean, which is very far more than the gold on the surface of the earth, but, that none has been mined before, it could be possible in the future that technology could advance to the extent those gold under oceans could be mined, but that is just my thought, I can be wrong about it.

How about the gold existing on the earth surface, scientists give estimates, but the gold existing on the surface can still be more, if there is estimation of 122 billion metric tons of gold on the earth surface, and only 165,000 metric tons are yet mined, I think there is still enough gold on earth surface to still be considered unlimited. I may be wrong, I will like your take on this, but I do not believe in the saying that only little amount of gold are not yet mined, it is still unlimited.

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May 17, 2022, 05:37:55 PM
 #17

If I invest on bitcoin I expect more return than gold...
That is one pro Bitcoin has over gold, but remember that if you must speculate with Bitcoin you have to expect great ROI in the long run, as Bitcoin doesn't really maintain its value for a long period of time like gold, it is volatile, and short term investors sometimes lose their funds and do not make any returns, gold on the other hand is a store of value/safe haven asset, and that is one pro gold has over Bitcoin. I am just trying to point out that the two have advantages over the other.
yet the investment is easy for me because I can do it with nobody knowing I am even investing in bitcoin...
Gold is physical, but you could still own gold and nobody would know you do so, it is up to you, there are Bitcoin users who tell everyone they own Bitcoins as well, i think this point depends a whole lot on the user/how they use their asset.

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May 17, 2022, 05:53:43 PM
 #18

244,000 metric tons of gold has been discovered to date, 55,000 tons of gold are left.

But there is still a lot of gold left in the universe. There is gold on asteroids for example. One day these will be minable. So the gold supply is not as limited as some may think.

I could start with the fact that's not even 100% certain how much gold is still available to be mined. I don't know how accurate the current estimations are.
Then, yes, gold does exist in space, and I would not be surprised if it would get attempted to be mined from there, if it will be proven to be more useful than just getting hoarded by the richer entities (especially since such a move could melt its current price).

Bitcoin has kinda same problem: if people stops hoarding it, the price may go lower than most of us would like. It doesn't have to be mined from outer space.


While I do agree that Bitcoin is scarcer than the total gold in the universe, especially according to our perception, I would not try to prove this because.. what to compare: kg with BTC, gram with satoshi, atom with.. what? since "tomorrow" the community could decide that one satoshi is too big (compared to whatever paper money) and we need more digits after the decimal point, and 16 looks just fine for the job.

I think one day 1 BTC will enter the $xxx,xxx zone then the $x,xxx,xxx HODL BTC

This goes to speculation area Wink

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May 17, 2022, 06:34:24 PM
 #19

244,000 metric tons of gold has been discovered to date, 55,000 tons of gold are left.

But there is still a lot of gold left in the universe. There is gold on asteroids for example. One day these will be minable. So the gold supply is not as limited as some may think.

However, gold is hard to move around, weighs a lot, it's hard to sell or buy, it's not practicable.

With BTC it's another story. We all know there are only 21,000,000 coins and 3-4 millions are already lost forever.

There is no Bitcoin in the whole Universe, except on Planet Earth.

BTC is scarcer than gold. I think one day 1 BTC will enter the $xxx,xxx zone then the $x,xxx,xxx HODL BTC
To me the fact that we know exactly how much bitcoin will exist and how much is left to mine makes bitcoin a unique currency, after all we do not know how much gold is really out there, there are estimations about the gold left to mine but there could be more or less gold than the estimations.

And as you mention in the case our technology reaches a certain point then the gold in space could become available causing its supply to increase tremendously, while the supply of bitcoin could only increase if there was a change on the source code, which is something that will not happen.

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May 17, 2022, 07:23:31 PM
 #20

I don’t know which formula is used by those who give estimates of how much gold is still underground, but I hope it’s not something similar to what led us to speculate that 3-4 million BTC was lost. By this, I mean that this number is the result of an analysis that concluded that all the BTC that did not move x years was lost.
I was going to ask this same question. How accurate could the amount of unmined gold be determined?
Is it the same data that was used to calculate how old the earth is and when the earth will stop existing?

Talking about gold scarcity. Gold can be refined, it can be reformed or reshaped and it is still a gold. It is natural.

Bitcoin in the other hand is created by man, and a btc converted to usdt is lost (I don't know if this analogy is correct)

OP, When we say about scarcity, we also say about availability. If I want to buy $100m worth of btc in few minutes time, I could get, is it also applicable to gold?

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