From CryptoWiki


  • Term for a huge player in the market holding a substantial amount of coins/tokens. Like a fund or (very) early adopter. The idea is that whales have the power to move the market. Due to their impact on markets, “whale watching” has become commonplace for crypto analysts.
  • A person or institution that holds such an enormous amount of a certain crypto-currency that whenever they buy or sell, they’re able to move the market (when a whale makes a large crypto transaction, that’s known as a whale movement). Many whales choose to remain mysterious. Nobody knows, for example, the identity of the world’s largest dogecoin holder, who has collected 39.6 billion doge since 2019 (about 30 percent of the total supply).
  • Since PoS and DeFi have gotten big, whales now have more powers besides moving the market. They now are able to change governance on-chain.
  • From this Bitcoin.com article (19-12-2019):

"A new study of 140,000 crypto addresses finds that few accounts are needed to form majority ownership of many coins. More than half of all LTC is held in just 189 non-exchange addresses, and on average, the top 100 ERC20 tokens are majority-owned by just 34 addresses. Almost 1 in 4 tokens had a majority owned by the project founder."

Wealth Attack

  • Adam Cochran had a tweet thread (27-1-2020) about whale manipulation within DeFi and the possible ways to deal with what he calls a 'Wealth Attack';

1. "Do they focus simply on scaling to dilute the potential/profitability of these attacks?

2. Do they put measures in place to cap or negatively scale large whales (such as tickets are capped or get more expensive per ticket after X tickets)?

3. Or is this simply an acceptable side effect of decentralized networks?"