Bitcoin surpasses American Express in terms of transaction volume!

Cryptocurrency investment firm New York Digital Group (NYDIG) revealed in a report that the total volume of bitcoin transactions in 2021 exceeded the annual volume of payments processed by American Express. According to NYDIG, bitcoin processed $3.007 trillion in payments, putting it far ahead of American Express ($1.3 trillion) and Discover ($0.5 trillion).

The volume processed by bitcoin in 2021, however, lagged behind the volumes of the market-leading credit cards, Visa ($13.5 trillion) and Mastercard ($7.7 trillion), the study notes. Some credit card revenue has been more closely tied to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Visa reported on Jan. 27 considerable growth in spending using prepaid credit cards with cryptocurrencies. In the last quarter of 2021 alone, that figure topped $2.5 billion.

This is amazing growth, in our view, for a payment network that just reached its 13th anniversary.“, says NYDIG. The firm adds that major credit cards have decades of history. Visa was launched in 1958, and in the same year the first American Express card was launched. Mastercard and Discovery were launched in 1966 and 1985, respectively, the report said.

As can be seen in the chart below, besides bitcoin taking the third place among the major credit card payment networks, its annual growth far exceeds that of traditional payment processors.

From 2020 to 2021, bitcoin payments processed grew from $886 million to $3.007 trillion, more than tripling, or a growth of 239%. By comparison, the annual growth rates of Visa and Mastercard were 18.7% and 21.9% respectively.

If these growth rates continue through 2022, bitcoin could overtake Mastercard in transaction volume this year. While Visa would top $16 billion with 18.7% growth this year, Bicoin would top $10 billion this year, if it experiences a similar boom to 2021. Mastercard, meanwhile, while continuing to grow 21.9% this year, would reach a transaction volume of $9.41 trillion.

A Blockdata report published last November also compared the volume processed by Bitcoin in 2021, compared to Visa and Mastercard. Among the report’s findings, Blockdata pointed out that it was quite remarkable that a payment network like bitcoin, which was only 12 years old, reached 27% of the volume of Mastercard, which was created in 1966. This performance becomes even more remarkable when considering the decentralized nature of bitcoin.