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A Primer on Valuing Cryptocurrencies

An Wang, PhD, and Simona Mola, PhD
April 18, 2018
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Startups and projects are raising more and more money through initial coin offerings. At the beginning of 2018, the aggregate market capitalization of cryptocurrencies hit an all-time high of more than $800 billion; and despite the recent decline in value, some foresee this market hitting $1 trillion by year’s end. The increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies has fostered much legal debate, and many enforcement actions have been taken in recent months. Senior Economist An Wang and Simona Mola contribute to the debate in their article by offering an economic perspective on cryptocurrencies—in particular, what drives the value of a cryptocurrency. From an economic standpoint not all cryptocurrencies are created equal, however, and understanding their differences has crucial implications on their valuation.


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