Bitcoin: Only 4 million left to mine

By design, only 21 million bitcoins were available for mining when the cryptocurrency was created, and 17 million have now been mined

David Nurieli
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A new milestone has been reached, with a total of 17 mln bitcoins (BTC) now mined, according to data from statoshi.info.

Bitcoin’s code dictates a total supply cap of 21 mln, which means that only 4 mln Bitcoin, or about 19 percent, remain to be mined.

When bitcoin founder Satoshi Nakamoto launched his first block on January 3, 2009, he created the first 50 bitcoins. Since then 210,000 blocks have been created and, in keeping with the tight schedule, the network is taking 50 percent off the bonus price for each block.

The remaining 4 mln Bitcoin will take longer to mine and, assuming the Bitcoin protocol remains unchanged – following Satoshi’s halving schedule and block validation every 10 minutes on average – the last newly minted Bitcoin will be in 2140.

Bitcoin’s had a rough go so far in 2018, dropping nearly 35 percent since early this year and more than double since its high of $19,200 at the end of December. Bitcoin reached over a one-month high on Tuesday (April 24), when it clocked in at $9,745.02.

CNBC has quoted Ansel Lindner, a bitcoin investor and host of the "Bitcoin & Markets" podcast when he said, "It's an event that makes the market more aware of the scarcity of bitcoin. It will eventually turn into higher prices.”

The 17 millionth bitcoin "serves as a timely reminder that despite bitcoin's volatility the fundamentals have never been stronger!" Brandon Williams of cryptocurrency trading firm Cosima Capital, said in an email.