How do I use the crypto investment calculator?

How much would you have if you invested $100 in Bitcoin 10 years ago? What about investing in Ethereum last week? Use the free app above to calculate ROI on over 10,000 cryptocurrencies over any period of time. Explore the tabs for more charts and tables that support your input. 

Reshape the equation at the top by clicking Edit Formula to backtest something more specific. The results are shareable! Link directly to the tool results anywhere online.

Explore more recent winners and losers from the Investments tab. Clicking on any asset will send it to the interactive calculator.

What is a crypto ROI?

Crypto ROI is an amalgamation of two key concepts. Cryptocurrency (or “crypto” for short) and return on investment (abbreviated as “ROI” from this point on).

Crypto describes all digital currency. Certain underlying technologies such as blockchains, mining, and digital wallets are often associated. Nonetheless, cryptocurrencies only share one attribute by definition: cryptography. This simply means that an asset is digitally secured by some means of encryption.

Crypto ROI calculations apply the classic ROI equation to explain crypto investment returns. This can resemble a stock investment, based on familiar variables of starting price, ending price, and fees. For others, such as those engaged in liquidity pools, farming, and staking, the math is more complex.

How do I calculate crypto ROI?

ROI in crypto is calculated much like any other investment. The ROI equation itself remains exactly the same. Crypto just adds new variables when figuring out Initial Value, Final Value, and Cost.

Here’s a quick refresher on the ROI equation:

\text{ROI} = {\text{Final Value} - \text{Initial Value}  \above{1pt} \text{Cost}} \times 100

Initial Value is still an easy calculation for crypto investments:

\text{Initial Value} = \text{Initial Price} \times \text{Initial Quantity}

Keep in mind that commissions and fees could be deducted at the time of the purchase: lowering the Initial Value of an asset.

Final Value is straightforward as well – at least, when you’re looking in the rearview mirror:

\text{Final Value} = \text{Final Price} \times \text{Final Quantity}

Projecting the future value of a crypto investment is more challenging, of course, with no guarantees. Certain financial products may cause quantities to grow and compound, for example. The calculator above is great at hypotheticals.

Cost calculations for a crypto investment can be challenging. Almost every cryptocurrency takes some sort of transaction fee to support the maintenance of the network. This is called “gas”. 

If you’re trading with a traditional (centralized) broker, that firm is certain to deduct their own transaction fees in some form. You may also pay a fee to initially deposit U.S. dollars or other non-digital currency on the platform. Crypto enthusiasts call this a “fiat onramp”. Meanwhile, “fiat offramps”, or fees incurred at the time of reclaiming your funds, also exist on some platforms.

You may instead “swap” to buy a cryptocurrency using a decentralized finance platform. The fees tend to be less on the whole but the options to do so are limited. In decentralized finance (or “defi”), your transaction fees go to liquidity providers. Liquidity providers are investors that front liquidity for a specific pairing of currencies for others to “swap” between.

Finally, keep in mind that buying a particular cryptocurrency may not be a direct path. You may need to convert between a chain of currencies: especially to buy a coin that is less established.

How profitable is investing in crypto?

Since the invention of the blockchain, the profit from certain crypto investments has been astounding: offering paybacks that beat the very best equities on the market. As you’ll find in the table above, many projects yield returns reaching into the thousands of percent each year.

But don’t be dazzled by the big numbers alone: with great reward comes great risk. Scams are abundant and Web3 projects fold constantly. Crypto remains an incredibly speculative asset class to invest in. Substantial due diligence is required 

What is a good ROI for crypto?

Investment goals are unique from one person to another and investors always consider risks along with returns. The risks of crypto investment are obviously especially high.

If you were to compare to equity indexes, a good return on investment is generally considered to be about 7% per year. 

In cryptocurrency, for leaders such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Terra, returns have been much higher, reaching into the thousands of percent. To be realistic, there is no guarantee that cryptocurrency’s gains in the 2010s recur (or for any past returns to recur, for that matter).

Weighing all of these facts, a healthy expectation for crypto investment is that many projects will almost certainly go to zero and a diversified crypto portfolio should probably require returns that are a good percentage higher than “the 7% rule” to compensate for that risk.

Ultimately, only you can decide what goals are ideal for the situation and what upside to expect from the technologies that you’ve done your due diligence on. 

What’s an example of crypto ROI?

Here’s an example of crypto ROI that’s based on a story that most of us have heard. 

On May 22 2010, a man named Laszlo Hanyecz bought a pizza for 10,000 Bitcoin at $0.0041 per Bitcoin. That’s an Initial Value of $41.

Now let’s assume that instead of buying a pizza, Laszlo kept that Bitcoin safely secured until May 22 2020 when he sold his entire investment back to receive U.S. dollars. Exactly 10 years later, Bitcoin reached a daily high of $9,804.79 per coin. The Final Value of Laszlo’s Bitcoin as of May 22 reached $98,047,900.

Now, 2010 was still the wild west for cryptocurrency. Fees would have been very low on the network. He would have had to purchase his Bitcoin using PayPal or maybe even the U.S. postal service. Let’s say that transaction cost him $4. And in 2020, let’s say that it costs $25 to sell his Bitcoin and withdraw his funds as U.S. dollars. His total Cost includes his initial investment ($41) plus those two transaction fees ($4 and $25) totaling $70.

We can now calculate his ROI on that Bitcoin investment as:

\text{Crypto ROI} = {\text{\textdollar}98,047,900 - \text{\textdollar}41 \above{1pt} \text{\textdollar}70} \times 100

In this sample, Laszlo’s crypto ROI is 140,068,370%.