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Non-fungible tokens were one of the hottest topics in 2021, and a new study from industry tracker NonFungible.com demonstrates how NFT traders capitalized on the trend.
According to the analysts, the combined trading volume of NFTs for the year was nearly $18 billion.
NFTs were all the rage as a result of mainstream media, celebrity, and social media influencer endorsements, not to mention top corporate entities’ support.
In an interview with CNBC, Gauthier Zuppinger, co-founder of Nonfungible.com, stated:
“We’ve witnessed exponential growth over the last year.”
In 2020, NFTs were still considered a niche product, with only $82 million in trading volume. Its fame soared in the spring of 2021, when an auction of Beeple’s digital works fetched approximately $70 million.
Nonfungible tokens have developed into a burgeoning market that continues to grow year after year. For instance, revenues increased from $41 million in 2018 to an astounding $2.5 billion in the first half of 2021 — a 60-fold increase in just three and a half years.
Even by 2020’s standards, the rise is astonishing. Total sales of NFTs on Ethereum hit $340 million in 2020 and have already reached nearly $10 billion in 2021, a more than 25-fold increase, according to data from NonFungible.com.
Crypto total market cap at $1.713 trillion on the daily chart | Source: TradingView.com
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Nonfungible.com also tracked cryptocurrency art sales at the world’s three largest auction houses, which totaled $150 million at Christie’s, $100 million at Sotheby’s, and $6.2 million at Phillips.
While a few well-heeled collectors paid exorbitant prices for works by artists such as Beeple and Pak, a sizable network of crypto art buyers has developed.
Since then, tokens in prestigious digital art collections such as CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club have fetched hundreds of thousands of dollars each.
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The report notes that the 200-fold increase in the nonfungible market was 100 times more than the percentage gain in the electric vehicle industry during the same period.
Nonfungible.com provides one of the more conservative projections of NFT trading volume for 2021 based on available data. Chainalysis had estimated the space’s trade volume to be in the neighborhood of $40 billion.
However, Zuppinger asserts that the distinction all boils down to methodology.
Zuppinger asserted that his company engaged in solely genuine transactions and disclaimed any involvement in wash trading or bot operations.
NFTs Are Here To Stay
Meanwhile, as the pandemic winds down, speculation about digital artworks has diminished slightly.
Owners of NFTs, as well as those interested in purchasing or selling them, should take solace in the fact that the average daily trade volume for these digital artworks has remained stable.
In other words, NFTs are almost certain to be around for quite a while.
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Featured image from BBC, chart from TradingView.com
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