How Bitcoin price models may be antithetical to Bitcoin itself
You may be familiar with the various price models that circulate crypto twitter. Most notably in the past few years the stock 2 flow (S2F) model has risen to prominence, promising a $100k bitcoin, and giving hopium to plebs and traders alike. This promise, clearly, has yet to be realized. Let's discuss why this model and models like S2F are flawed, how they may even be antithetical to Bitcoin itself, and why price is a short term distraction.
S2F is simply a model based on a ratio of the amount of bitcoin that has been mined (stock) divided by the amount of bitcoin that is mined annually (flow). S2F models are typically applied to commodities such as gold or real estate. Due to bitcoin's absolute transparency through programmed stock and flow, the stock and flow of bitcoin can be precisely known and thus applied to a model to predict price. The stepwise pattern of the white line above is because of the halvening which is programmed into Bitcoin (i.e. the current block reward is 6.25 bitcoin, sometime in 2024 this will be reduced to 3.125 bitcoin, and so on and so forth every ~4 years).
Now, where do we find our flaws? Plainly - attempting to determine the price of a monetary asset that is in price discovery (or not) is impossible. S2F and models like it seek to force a square through a circular hole. What do I mean by this? There are an unquantifiable amount of variables that contribute to the price of bitcoin, from geopolitical events (such as the Russian invasion of Ukraine) to the complexities of human behavior (An individual in the US may suddenly need liquid cash/while an individual in India may suddenly decide that Tron is the future of money) - however absurd they may seem, human markets are incredibly complex - and these complexities are being boiled down in models like S2F or Fidelity's mobile phone subscriber vs. bitcoin adoption model seen below.
Now, how can this be antithetical to Bitcoin itself? Let's talk about our financial system which is currently at the behest of the actions and words of central bankers across the world. Central Banking is akin to central planning, with the belief that central control of money and capital allocation will lead to a more prosperous world economy. Led by the Federal Reserve, the monetary supply, lending rates, and inflation targets (typically a goal of 2%) are controlled by this single entity. As stated above, due to human behaviors, the economy is incredibly complex. Best put by Ludwig Von Mises "the mind of one man alone - be it ever so cunning, is too weak to grasp the importance of any single one among the countlessly many goods of a higher order. No single man can ever master all the possibilities of production, innumerable as they are, as to be in a position to make straight way evident judgments of value..." Here, as in bitcoin price models, we are trying to force a square through a circular hole, attempting to control and model a complex system by using a small number of variables. Bitcoin is the antithesis of central planning, a decentralized monetary good, outside the control of singular entities, but beholden to the complexities of the free market.
This is why Bitcoin price models and Bitcoin price are a distraction from the eventuality of Bitcoin. Believing in a price model can impair your belief in Bitcoin when these models inevitably break. Constantly following price can cause you to waiver in the face of intense volatility. Human emotion is a powerful motivator. Instead of focusing our energy on models and price, focus on the fundamentals. Is user experience improving? How can we improve it further? Are more and more people onboarding onto bitcoin? How can we onboard more? Are small business, institutions, and nation-states adopting the network? How can we ease this transition? Is Bitcoin improving the lives of people around the globe? Answer these questions, and price will follow.