Tracking search interest, exchange rate volatility, and peer-to-peer exchange volume

Over the years, search interest for Bitcoin has been rising across Central America. Most countries experienced record high search interest in 2021, surpassing the 2017 mania.

The most striking individual country chart is El Salvador, which became the first country in the world to recognize Bitcoin as legal…

Inside the trends that drove Bitcoin’s recent highs

Photo via Bermix Studio

This is a personal version of an article written for Coinbase here.

A wave of institutional adoption

Over the past year, Bitcoin saw large institutions — like banks, hedge funds, insurance giants, and tech firms — investing, providing storage solutions, and building trading infrastructure across the world. …

Confidence in institutions has been collapsing since the 1970’s. What happened?

Photo by Cristina Gottardi on Unsplash

“Uncertainty is an acid, corrosive to authority. Once the monopoly on information is lost, so too is our trust. Every presidential statement, every CIA assessment, every investigative report by a great newspaper, suddenly acquired an arbitrary aspect, and seemed grounded in moral predilection rather than intellectual rigor.”

-Martin Gurri, Revolt…

Bitcoin will do for money what the Internet did for free speech. While this kind of ideal may seem at first speculative, for me it’s personal. In practice Bitcoin is a powerful technology based on sound monetary policy, encrypted property rights, and universal accessibility / transparency. Anyone, anywhere can connect…

Ether is enabling a vibrant and open financial system as evidenced by the rise of DeFi, stablecoins, and wrapped tokens

Photo via easiblu

I recently helped write and research an article for Coinbase Learn called Rise of the Ethereum economy. Here’s a personal and expanded version of the main article.

What is Ethereum, the second largest crypto by market cap after Bitcoin? This past year, both Bitcoin and Ethereum have gained mainstream, institutional…

Global uncertainty, partisanship, and the volatility index

Photo via John Cameron

How do you measure fear itself? Fear is a powerful market force. If one could somehow quantitatively measure fear itself, one could theoretically gain an advantage over the market’s cycles. As Warren Buffett once wrote in a 1986 shareholder letter:

What we do know, however, is that occasional outbreaks of…

Debunking sensational scientists amid unprecedented temperature, sea level, and atmospheric CO2

Image via USGS

2020 has brought fires, floods and hurricanes across the world alongside novel forms of climate change denialism. Consider Patrick Moore, a so-called scientist with a significant Twitter following who claims:

“Any effect of CO2 on temperature could easily be overridden by other factors. The long historical record does not support…

Population, real estate, subway traffic, unemployment, and more

Image by Mike C. Valdivia on Unsplash

As of 2019, the Census Bureau recorded a population of 8.3 million for New York City. Compared to the populations of the top ten cities in the United States, New York City is by far the largest.

From 2016 to 2019, New York City’s population has been decreasing. While…

Analyzing the electricity it takes to mine digital gold

Photo by Dmitri Demidko on Unsplash

Bitcoin cannot be created on a whim, unlike dollars, yen, euros, etc. Similar to gold, creating new bitcoins takes work.

Instead of relying on central bankers to determine money supply, Bitcoin is decentralized. Miners record transactions that are verified by a global network of nodes¹ enforcing Bitcoin’s protocol. As of…

Decrypting the most powerful trends in crypto

Photo by Dmitri Demidko on Unsplash

Bitcoin is the monetary base of the Internet. Unlike national currencies, new bitcoins are created by a fixed and finite supply.¹ In an era of unprecedented monetary expansion Bitcoin’s value proposition is unique. There will only be 21 million bitcoins amid increasing trillions of dollars, pesos, yuans, etc.


Mike Co

Charting the digital sea — Capitalism, data, and democracy.

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