Bitcoin and blockchain media group CoinDesk has released its latest The State of Blockchain Report, which reveals digital assets are nearly twenty times more lucrative than property, gold and stocks combined.
The report reveals year-over-year returns on global real estate (3.2%), gold (7.7%), US equities (9.2%), and global equities (14.7%) pale in comparison to returns on bitcoin (150.6%) and all digital assets (445%).
The 115-page report contains a breakdown of the historic surge in cryptocurrency across April, May, and June, including statistics on transaction numbers, fees, ICOs, token value propositions, enterprise adoption, research and development, regulation and industry challenges.
CoinDesk Director of Research Nolan Bauerle said: "This quarter's State of Blockchain Report is remarkably eye-opening. Blockchain and digital assets are already solving real-world problems in business, government, technology and finance, and the impact on markets has been extraordinary. At the end of Q1, the total cryptocurrency market cap was valued at $23bn. Largely due to ICOs, the total market cap for digital assets hit $109bn by the end of Q2."
In response to the unprecedented rise of cryptocurrency in Q2 and rapidly growing interest from wealth managers across the globe, CoinDesk is launching Consensus: Invest, a first of its kind event tailored to the growing number of wealth managers interested in cryptocurrency. The event, to be held at the New York Marriott Marquis on 28 November, will serve as the bridge between high growth digital asset classes, institutions and professional investors across the globe, it said.
CoinDesk CEO Kevin Worth said: "CoinDesk is excited to host, connect and inform over 600 institutional investors, hedge funds, money managers, high net worth individuals, banks and elite family offices on the revolutionary digital asset industry.
"Consensus: Invest attendees will learn more about how to invest, trade, and store digital assets, as well as receive advisory from cryptocurrency experts, early institutional investors, exchange traded funds [ETFs] and derivatives platforms leads and specialists in digital asset tax compliance. Ultimately, attendees will walk away with a richer idea of where the digital asset market is headed in 2018."
Consensus: Invest will also include a presentation on the next State of Blockchain Report.
"The State of the Blockchain report dispels common myths and uncertainty surrounding blockchain through facts and exhaustive research from the top analysts in the space. The statistics in the Q2 report speak for themselves; enterprise and institutions are taking this asset class seriously and investor confidence is climbing exponentially. In Q2 alone, blockchain token sales raised a combined $797m, three times that of venture capital's $235m investment in blockchain companies," said Worth.
In addition the report reveals records are being smashed right, left and centre: Q2 2017 saw the largest amount of combined blockchain transactions ever, at over half a million per day, while bitcoin's total market capitalisation doubled. Global digital asset exchanges reported record trading volumes during the quarter, and returns for several ICO tokens since inception were historic, including Augur (4,583% returns), Golem (4,700%), ICONOMI (2,862%), Melonport (1,136%), First Blood (2,667%), Digix (2,393%) and SingularDTV (1,033%).
However, Q2 also saw some industry challenges. Due to Bitcoin's heavily publicised network congestion issues, transaction fees quadrupled from 62 cents in Q1 to $2.40 in Q2, while Ethereum's transaction fees rose by 918% within the same period. Further, in a blockchain sentiment survey, over 72% of the sample audience indicated bitcoin mining is too centralised, while 95% indicated ICO issuers should not convert funds raised into fiat currency.
"There will always be growing pains in an industry that added a billion dollars a day in value across Q2. Solutions are being worked on for blockchain backlogs, transaction capacities and reducing fees. The technology is advancing quickly and we are confident the industry will continue to boom. Regulation appears to be clearing up in Europe and Asia, while new guidelines are being instituted within the United States," said Bauerle.