As Matt Huang wrote in his piece, Bitcoin for The Open-Minded Skeptic, "Investors have well-established frameworks for evaluating assets like equities, credit, and real estate. But a new monetary asset such as Bitcoin appears so infrequently that no clear framework exists." Stated simply, there is no tried and true method for conducting a most accurate valuation of Bitcoin. As such, I have endeavored to employ a few different methodologies to arrive at an approximate range of value for Bitcoin in the relative near-term. The very definition of the duration that is designated by the term "near-term" can be debated, but for simplicity's sake, let us think about it as being less than 5 years to differentiate this attempt at a valuation from any that may ascribe to approximate an ultimate valuation for Bitcoin. The methodologies which I have used vary widely in their approaches but can all be used to arrive at a similar valuation range for Bitcoin which is between 5x and 25x its current price of around $10,000 per Bitcoin, or more narrowly, between 10x and 20x.
Since valuation is as much of an art as it is a science, I will let you know my subjective conclusion before sharing with you the various numbers generated by the various methodologies. Due to the unprecedented nature and relative newness of Bitcoin, I believe it is reasonable and conservative to expect that it has a 50% chance of facing a fatal failure in the next few years, a case to which we can over-conservatively assume it will have no value (1 BTC = $0). If Bitcoin does not die, I believe it is reasonable and conservative to expect that it will appreciate by at least 10x in the near-term (1 BTC = ~$100,000). Just as the 50% chance of failure contains the possibility of many alternative bearish outcomes to the extreme case of Bitcoin becoming entirely worthless, the 50% chance of continued success contains the possibility of many alternative bullish outcomes to what I genuinely believe is a conservative estimation of 10x. These alternative bullish outcomes may be lesser than my estimation, of course, but they may also be two, three, or several times greater. For example, if Bitcoin were to achieve a market capitalization similar to that of gold in the next few years, that would imply an approximate 50x increase in the price of Bitcoin from where it stands today. It is worth noting that while I somewhat doubt Bitcoin will achieve parity with gold within the next five years, I do expect that the 10x appreciation that I estimate for the near-term will be accomplished in the front end of the near-term / less than 5 year period that I tied it to, and if I was pressed to make a guess, I would suggest it is more likely to first occur in 2021 than any subsequent years, with 2022 being the next most likely, and so on.
In summary, I expect that there is a 50% chance Bitcoin will hit a price of $100,000 by the end of next year (2021).