Sep 22, 2020

News | Trading: Why Cryptocurrency Miners Love Nvidia’s New Graphics Chips


Max A. Cherney

Courtesy of Nvidia

While gamers have largely cheered the release of Nvidia’s next generation of GeForce videogame chips, cryptocurrency miners too appear to have found something to love about the so-called Ampere graphics processing units.

According to Mitch Steves, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, the net daily profitability for Nvidia’s (ticker: AMD) new GTX 3080 product has advanced to $3, compared with a competing chip from Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), which nets cryptocurrency miners about $1.75 a day. It isn’t yet clear how much this will benefit Nvidia’s quarterly sales, but the company has previously enjoyed a substantial lift when cryptocurrency miners find suitable Nvidia products.

In the Monday client note, Steves also wrote that mining done with graphics processing units (GPUs) has made something of a comeback because the new chips have superior performance, and technical changes have driven up transaction fees. Lastly, one of the files needed to mine ethereum will likely grow too large for many of the chips currently used for currency mining.

Nvidia’s GTX 3080 cards have 10 gigabytes of memory, which has prompted some of them to purchase the Nvidia’s cards instead of buying cards specially designed for mining.

Steves estimated that it would take miners 233 days to achieve profitability with an unmodified RTX 3080 card.

On Monday, Nvidia apologized for problems customers faced last week when trying to order the product, which retails for $699, including “crashes, delays and other issues.” The company added, “the demand for the GeForce RTX 3080 was truly unprecedented. We and our partners underestimated it.”

Steves has a $610 target price on the stock, and rates it the equivalent of a Buy. The average target price for the stock is $554.47, which implies an upside of 11%. Of the analysts that cover Nvidia, 33 rate it a Buy, six have a Hold, and two rate it a Sell.

Shares of Nvidia closed up 2.7% to $501.40 during the regular session Monday. The stock has roughly doubled this year, as the PHLX Semiconductor index advanced 17%.

Write to Max A. Cherney at

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