They have every motivation to do so.
Extreme volatility is bad for confidence and can hurt the chance of Bitcoin becoming a respected currency.
Say for the sake of argument that Satoshi owns 500,000 BTC. This is a conservative estimate.
Someone holding that much BTC could easily dampen the wild price swings we are seeing at the moment by selling large quantities when the price spikes and buying them back when it crashes.
By doing this they risk losing a fraction of their bitcoins. However, this would also increase the probability of bitcoin’s success and them becoming multimillionaires.
Which would you choose?
- 50% chance that you own 500,000 BTC worth $500 Million USD in 2017. 50% chance that bitcoin fails to take off and they are worth $5 Million USD.
- 80% chance that you own 300,000 BTC worth $300 Million USD in 2017. 20% chance that bitcoin fails to take off and they are worth $3 Million USD. Plus $16 Million USD profit right now.
Note: The above numbers are not meant to be scientific. They are just simplifications meant to illustrate the gist of my argument.
I don’t see how any rational person would choose option (1), unless they have some really crazy lopsided utility function for money.
So why isn’t it happening? Why are most coins mined in 2009 practically untouched?