Data from shows that the market capitalization for all crypto virtual currencies is currently at approximately $300 billion. Of that amount, Bitcoin’s market share represents about $158 billion, and the second largest cryptocurrency, ethereum/ether has about a $50 billion market share. Furthermore, virtual currency (e.g., Bitcoin, ethereum/ether) trading and the related block chain trading technology platforms have been dominated by retail investors, which has played a significant role in pushing cryptocurrencies to record highs in 2017. In that regard, Coinbase, the world’s largest online crypto wallet, adds about 100,000 new users every week.

It is estimated that millions of U.S. taxpayer Bitcoin transactions have occurred, yet the IRS has stated that only 800 to 900 taxpayers reported their Bitcoin gains from 2013 through 2015 by electronically filing IRS Form 8949—the IRS form used for reporting sales and other dispositions of capital assets.