With over $8.6M in escrow.com recorded sales, Q4 sets the record as the best quarter ever recorded for 4Ls.
Welcome to the 11th edition of the Liquid Domains Overview (LXDO), which focuses on the 614,928 .com domains we call “liquid”. The objective of the report is to present key statistics and generate a debate amongst the industry stakeholders about the fair value of such domains. We hope you enjoy it and we encourage your feedback and participation for the next reports.
DEVELOPMENT INDEX AND OWNERSHIP DATA
2018 ended with a reversal of trends from Q2 and Q3, with China gaining about 22,500 domains (+3.67%) and controlling about 1/3 of all the liquid domains, especially numerics. Once again, the largest movement in ownership came from domains going from public to private. Private domains now represent 38% of all liquid domains. This is a continued trend from the inception of GDPR in Q2, which caused the number of liquid domains under privacy to almost double in less than one year. 2Ns and 3Ns have the most private registrations with over 50% of each category having masked whois data. We can again observe a correlation between average domain value and number of domains under privacy. The US controls 17% of the liquid domains, while Europe and the rest of the world excluding China, account for 10% combined.
Once again, the most developed categories are 2Ls, followed by 3Ls and 2Cs. The least developed categories are numeric domains led by the 5Ns, followed by 4Ns and the 3Ns.
4Ls .com domains registered a record $8.6M in escrow.com transactions, by far the best result since the publication of this report. The second largest escrow.com domain sales volume belongs to the 3Ls, with almost $5M in transactions; followed by the 4Ns which registered one of their strongest quarters with $2.7M in escrow.com sales. There was no escrow.com data available for 2Ls, 2Ns, 2Cs, and 3Ns, but ShortNames records a disclosed 2 letter .com transaction at $700,000. ShortNames also shows $1M in public 5N transactions, consistent with 2018 sales
The 5th percentile values continue to show single and double digits losses. 5Ns saw the worst performance at -11.63%, followed by the 3Ls at -10.62%. 3Cs also record a signi!cant loss at -7.53%. The notable exception was the 4Ls which appear to have bottomed in the prior quarter. The category registered a 12.37% 5th percentile increase, e”ectively bouncing back from the $100 support level (last quarter the value was $97) and reaching the $109 5th percentile level over 1,800 disclosed transactions. Median prices do not show any signi!cant variation, with the notable exception of 3Cs which show a 61% increase.
Q1 is normally a slow quarter for Liquid Domains due to the reduced activity from China caused by the Chinese New Year. Unless there are large end user transactions, we forecast a slow beginning to 2019. It will be interesting to observe whether the 4 letter’s 5th percentile values will stay above the $100 support or whether they will continue the general declining trend of other liquid categories.