On December 25 a new milestone has been reached in the bitcoin mining industry. 15 million bitcoins have been mined since 2008 when the cryptocurrency was founded.

More than 1,250,000 bitcoins have been mined in 2015, bringing the total amount of bitcoins to just above 15 million. Last year and in 2013 the speed was just slightly higher, shows blockchain.info. But before the speed was higher: graphics show that in 2012 two million and a half bitcoins were mined, and in 2011 and 2010 the figure reaches three million each year. 
The decrease of mining speed in 2012 is connected with the halving of the bitcoin reward that took place that year. According to the bitcoin protocol, the reward for each block added to the block chain, originally being 50 bitcoins, is supposed to halve every four years. The first halving took place in 2012. The next one is due in 2016.

The current market capitalization of the existing 15 million bitcoins equals 6 billion 842 million USD. Most of 2015 the market capitalization balanced between 3 and 4 billion USD, but has grown in the recent months due to the rise of bitcoin’s exchange rate. Still, today’s market capitalization of bitcoin is more than twice less than at the end of 2013 when it reached 13 billion 900 million USD. In December 2013 there were much fewer bitcoins than now, but the price of the cryptocurrency then reached its peak.


Andrew Levich