Reading The Explorer - Wallets Vs Addresses


I would like to clarify some misconceptions that beginners may have trying to read the Cardano Explorer.

In these :point_up_2: random address (…A2y) transactions, I can see that …A2y has sent :ada:390,000 to …MRi.

I would expect the change to go back to …A2y, instead the :ada:3,000 change goes to a new address (…oUk).

Why does that happen?
|s Daedalus creating new addresses (that belong to the same wallet) when a sender need to receive a change? if yes why is that the case?





isn’t therefore irrelevant discussing the Balance Distribution by Addresses as in this video by the good @philpa ? or even the Rich List from

it said that the BDA can give you a “rough perspective on how many people are in the ecosystem” but in reality (if for every Tx by default a new address is created) is not just rough, is most likely a wrong perspective. Much more whales in reality. The distinction between Wallets and addresses should be made more clear.

Are there renown methods/algorithms that try to guess/track what addresses belong to the same wallets? I guess by assuming as change the smaller output?

As a start I think could be interesting to get an estimate of how many addresses don’t use that option of creating new addresses for each transaction or didn’t have Tx that split their wallets in multiple addresses. So to know how many addresses are actually not “lying”.


you’ve just worked out why the word “rough” is in there. :slight_smile:

every “send” transaction.

unless the user specifically requests a new address be generated, contiguous “receive” transactions will accrue to the same address.



you assume correct. cardano works exactly like bitcoin, there are algorithms for bitcoin that do this, they would work for cardano, but i am unaware of anyone using them. don’t know how complex they are to run. maybe suggest it to bovich, he seems to know what he is doing.

i think the distribution stats are still useful, they give us an idea of what is going on but nothing exact.


Thanks for the clarifications @HisMajesty, helps me a lot.

Yes they are probably still useful especially as in this early stages the hodlers are the majority and probably the most of addresses/wallets are still “integral”. It may get less relevant with time.

Was good to make it more clear for newbies as me.