Crypto gains reached $37.6B in 2023— Chainalysis

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Crypto investors returned to gains in 2023, pocketing billions in profits during the year after a prolonged downturn, according to a new report from blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis. 

The new estimates indicate realized gains — profits from selling assets for more than their purchase price — reached $37.6 billion in 2023, representing a significant recovery from realized losses of $127.1 billion in 2022. Relative to the latest bull market, however, the recovery is modest. In 2021, crypto investors realized gains of $159.7 billion, Chainalysis estimates.

“Interestingly, our total gains estimate for 2023 is lower than 2021, despite crypto asset prices growing at similar rates in each of those two years. One possible explanation for this could be that investors in 2023 were less likely to convert crypto assets into cash, under the expectation that prices would rise even higher.”

Throughout 2023, crypto gains were consistent, with only two consecutive months of losses in August and September — when the United States cracked down on crypto companies. Gains soared again in November and December in anticipation of the approval of Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETF).

Estimated realized crypto gains. Source: Chainalysis.

The United States ranked first in the list by a “wide margin” with $9.36 billion in estimated realized gains over the year. The United Kingdom stands second with an estimated $1.39 billion in earned profits. Vietnam, China, Indonesia, India, Russia, and South Korea are also among the countries with realized gains of over $1 billion.

“We also see several upper and lower middle income countries whose residents appear to have achieved outsized gains, especially in Asia — Vietnam, China, Indonesia, and India, for example […]. We previously noted […] that countries in these income categories, and lower middle income countries in particular, showed strong cryptocurrency adoption that remained notably resilient even through the recent bear market.”

According to Chainalysis, its methodology measures investors’ crypto gains based on the movements of assets into and out of services that can be converted to fiat currency.

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