Collectors have already sent almost £30 billion to NFT marketplaces in 2022 alone, nearing the total £32 billion sent in 2021, according to blockchain data platform Chainalysis, while the number of active buyers and sellers continues to grow, topping 900,000 in the first quarter of 2022.
NFTs or non-fungible tokens are units of data that can be bought or sold as digital assets, such as pictures and digital artwork.
Around 90% of NFT transactions are less than $10,000, Chainalysis data suggests, though there have been over 50,000 transactions with a value greater than $100,000 in the past year.
Online NFT marketplace OpenSea saw its biggest one-day trading record earlier in May. $476 million worth of Ethereum was traded after NFT designer Bored Ape Yacht Club launched its own metaverse and began selling plots of land in the virtual space as NFTs.
The surge in NFT activity comes despite evidence of a decline in interest in the digital assets. Searches for ‘NFT’ have more than halved since their January peak, according to Google Trends data.
The value of NFTs as assets came under question recently after the owner of an NFT of the world’s first tweet, by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, struggled to get bidding higher than a few thousand dollars despite paying $2.9 million for the token last year.
Yesterday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk ridiculed the digital tokens, changing his Twitter profile picture to a cartoon resembling the Bored Ape NFT before tweeting: “I dunno … seems kinda fungible.”