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How many optimism coins are there? OP crypto circulation analysis as community admits huge supply rate error

By Ankish Jain

Edited by Jekaterina Drozdovica

10:00, 23 October 2022

3D rendering cryptocurrency optimism coin on colorful background, cryptocurrency concept 3D illustration
OP crypto circulation analysis as community admits huge supply rate error

The crypto markets suffered through bearish sentiment in 2022, amid a wider  macroeconomic environment and Terra-UST crisis, and the Optimism (OP) cryptocurrency is no exception. 

According to CoinMarketCap, Optimism native token OP, a layer two scaling solution for Ethereum (ETH), is following the downward trend. OP plunged to three-month lows in mid October after the mistake was made in setting the token’s total supply inflation rate. 

What effect would this have on the OP tokenomics? Here we take a look at how many optimism coins are there, and other news affecting the token’s supply. 

What is Optimism coin and how does it work?

Optimism was introduced in June 2019, with a testnet launched in October of the same year. An alpha mainnet was not released until January 2021

It took the founding team until late October 2021 to launch the alpha mainnet version compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). An open mainnet was released in December 2021.

Optimism is an Ethereum layer 2 scaling solution. It contributes to reducing transaction fees and transaction time on the Ethereum blockchain.

A layer 2 framework or protocol is developed on top of the existing blockchain system. The primary purpose of these protocols is to address the major cryptocurrency networks' transaction speed and scale issues. Optimism therefore helps in the resolution of Ethereum's scalability problem.

Optimism accelerates and reduces the cost of Ethereum transactions by settling them on another blockchain using superior data compression methods.

Optimistic rollups are the essence of Optimism's scaling process, in which numerous transactions are 'wrapped up' into one transaction, resolved on another blockchain, and subsequently pushed back to the main Ethereum mainnet.

Optimism batches transactions via rollups, reducing gas expenses and network congestion. Compared to the Layer 1 protocol, rollups can help users save the gas charges by up to several times.

The transaction data is uploaded to Ethereum's Layer 1 for processing while the rollup runs on Optimism's Layer 2.

Optimistic rollups presume that all transactions are legitimate. Hence, no expensive computations are performed on Layer 2. Instead, the rollup passes the batch to Layer 1 without confirming the transaction's legitimacy, resulting in a considerable boost in scalability.

If a validator detects a fraudulent transaction, they have a week to contest the batch's legitimacy. Then, Optimism rollups execute a fraud-proof, which checks information using Layer 1 data.

OP is the native currency of the Optimism Network. Holders of the OP token have voting rights in The Optimism Collective, a two-tier governance structure comprising the Token House and Citizens' House.

Citizens' House will be operational in the near future. Token House, which is already operational, oversees Optimism-related technical preferences such as software changes or upgrades.

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How many optimism coins are there: OP tokenomics 

The optimism cryptocurrency has a total supply of 4.29 billion tokens with an inflation rate of 2% per annum. How many optimism coins are available? OP has a circulating supply of 234.74 million tokens, according to CoinMarketCap data as of 21 October.

An inflationary token, like fiat money, has no maximum supply and will continue to be issued indefinitely. The maximum supply may indicate how rare a certain asset is. For example, Bitcoin (BTC) has a maximum supply of 21 million BTC, which implies that only 21 million BTC will ever exist. This scarcity makes bitcoin rare and boosts the price.

BTC/USD chart

Based on the initial allocation of OP tokens, 25% was distributed to the ecosystem fund, 20% to retroactive public goods funding (RPGF), 19% to early users through airdrops, 19% to developers, engineers, and employees, and 17% to investors.

The first user airdrop delivered 5% of the total number of optimism coins. Optimism launched its first airdrop on 1 June to 248,699 early adopters, including DAO voters, multi-sig signers, Github contributors and others.

A total of 14% of the OP token supply will be set aside for future user airdrops. The Optimism Foundation will be in charge of defining airdrop measures most equitably feasible.


0.62 Price
+5.500% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168


380.60 Price
-1.990% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 2.50


0.12 Price
-1.830% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872


64,619.75 Price
-0.130% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

After some users claimed tokens early and dumped them, the inaugural airdrop was greeted with "widespread dissatisfaction from the Optimism community". Optimism apologised for making errors in a series of tweets and offered a retrospective.

Who owns the most optimism coins?

According to CoinCarp data, as of 21 October, there were 153,733 OP token holders, up over 30% from 114,569 on 20 September, indicating a significant rise in OP token holders within a month.

The top 10 holders held over 75.97% of the OP supply, while the top 100 holders controlled 97.16%, making the token very susceptible to pump-and-dump schemes.

Meanwhile, only the top two wallets had more than 57.39% of the supply, or over 2.46 billion tokens, while the top seven wallets controlled over 70% of the OP supply.

The identities of these optimism whales were not available to the public since crypto wallets are anonymous. Depending on the original allocation criteria, these could be optimism investors, employees, or developers.

The largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, Binance (BNB), was the eighth largest holder of OP with 57.12 million tokens, or 1.33% of the total supply. Binance also held 9.85 million tokens in an additional wallet, bringing its total supply concentration greater than 1.56%.

According to statistics by CoinCarp, Optimism had 55.59 million tokens or 1.29% of OP supply in total. However, Optimism may hold more tokens in different wallets. Therefore, it is impossible to estimate optimism's overall supply concentration.

Optimism coin news and price drivers

According to Optimism, OP coin’s inflation rate is 2% yearly. However, when the team deployed the contract, an incorrect rate of 20% was applied. On 10 October, the Optimism team revised the contract logic to the anticipated 2%.

Consequently, the price of OP tokens fell sharply after the spurious announcement, from a high of $0.8505 on 10 October to a low of $0.6578 on 13 October, a decrease of nearly 23%, according to CoinMarketCap, suggesting fragile investor sentiment.

On 18 October, Optimism announced the launch of "OP Stack." The OP Stack is the code that powers the next-generation architecture of Optimism. It's a collection of components that form cohesive, trustworthy blockchains.

A well-defined API specifies each layer of the OP Stack that a layer-specific module must implement. One can quickly alter current modules or construct totally new ones to meet the requirements of any application they're developing.

In addition, Optimism reported on 24 August that on-chain transactions had increased, with the company settling an average of 150,000 transactions each day over the previous 30 days, a 40% increase over the previous 90 days.

Optimism to USD price chart, June - October 2022

The bottom line

The future of the optimism coin is at a crossroads in light of the ongoing bear market and diminishing investor confidence in the crypto sector.

While the protocol offers a substantial boost to Ethereum and is actively taking steps to scale up its L2 platform, it is still in the infancy stage, and nothing is assured.

Note that whether knowing how many optimism coins are in circulation is important for accessing the project’s tokenonomics, you should always conduct your own due diligence. Look at the latest news, technical and fundamental analysis, and a wide range of analysts’ opinions before making any trading decision. 

Keep in mind that past performance is no guarantee of future returns. And never trade or invest money that you cannot afford to lose.


How many optimism coins are in circulation?

As of 21 October, there was a reported circulating supply of almost 234.74 million OP tokens, out of a total supply of 4.29 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

How many optimism coins are mined every year?

Optimism coins have an inflation rate of 2%, and their distribution would be 30% of the overall supply in the first year, 15% in the second, 10% in the third and 5% in the fourth.

Who owns the most optimism coins?

According to CoinCarp data as of 21 October, two anonymous wallets held more than 57.39% of the supply, or over 2.46 billion


Markets in this article

Binance Coin / USD
578.86 USD
-2.69 -0.470%
Bitcoin / USD
64619.75 USD
-81.85 -0.130%
Ethereum / USD
3421.22 USD
-23.06 -0.670%

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