As the price of Bitcoin (BTC), the flagship cryptocurrency, surpasses its previous all-time high (and recently breaking past the $24,000 mark), a new report reveals that “attitudes” toward the digital asset are “improving” with nearly one in five or 20% of Australians now “owning some” virtual currency.
As mentioned in an update shared with Crowdfund Insider, conducted annually, the Independent Reserve Cryptocurrency Index (IRCI) is a nationwide survey offering a benchmark for “the awareness, trust and confidence” that Australians have in virtual currencies. Bitcoin or BTC remains “the best known” cryptocurrency, with 88.8% of the nation’s residents confirming that they’re (at least) “aware of it.”
As noted in the update:
“According to the IRCI, 78.2% of the survey respondents who did own crypto in 2020 said they were breaking even or better, with only 21.8% reporting a loss. The 45 – 54 age bracket were the most likely to have made money, with more than half in the black. This was a strong improvement on last year, where only 35% of their age group increased their wealth through crypto.”
Adrian Przelozny, CEO of Independent Reserve, the Australian digital asset exchange that initiated the inaugural IRCI in 2019, said that they’re seeing significantly more traditional and institutional investors “look to Bitcoin as a growth strategy.” Przelozny added that “it marries with the attitudinal shift they’ve seen across the Australian population as now almost two in five people view bitcoin as a store of value or an investment vehicle.”
As crypto moves into the mainstream, Australian residents will be “more inclined to trust it,” according to the update. In 2020, only 17.3% of survey respondents said they’ve considered Bitcoin to be a “scam,” which is down considerably from 21.3% last year. These numbers seem to reflect a “broader acceptance of the technology by the general public.” It’s also indicative of “shifting perceptions,” with 19.1% Australians noting that they now “view Bitcoin as a store of value, up from 16.7% in 2019.”
As confirmed in the update:
“Of those who had intended to buy crypto in 2020 but didn’t, more than a third said their purchasing decisions were directly impacted due to the economic fallout of the COVID-19 crisis.”
Przelozny claims that if it weren’t for the “sobering” effects of the Coronavirus crisis, and the downturn affecting trader and investor appetite to get into the market, then “it’s easy to imagine how the price of Bitcoin could have soared even higher this year.” He also mentioned that the IRCI 2020 reveals that considerably more Australian residents are “gaining confidence in crypto.”
As noted in the update:
“Beyond the dominant crypto, twice as many men than women knew of other coins such as Ethereum (ETH), [XRP], Bitcoin Cash (BCH), EOS and Litecoin (LTC).”
Millennials or younger investors were almost twice as likely than the general population to be “informed about newer cryptos,” like Chainlink (LINK), a digital token that has become increasingly popular because of this year’s trend toward decentralized finance (DeFi).
The complete 2020 IRCI report can be accessed here.