19 July 2018
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Few European consumers interested in bitcoin - ING

03 July 2018  |  4917 views  |  4 Bitcoin

Despite all the hype around bitcoin, only 16% of Europeans express any interest in diving into the cryptocurrency, according to a survey of 15,000 consumers conducted by ING.

Those that do buy into the trend are more likely to be younger (aged 25-44), male and from a country with a lower per-capital income such as Turkey or Romania.

With just nine percent of the sample owning bitcoin, awareness of the cryptocurrency varied across markets. Austrian consumers were the most clued up, with 79% having heard of bitcoin. This is in stark contrast to Belgium, where the cryptocurrency phenomena was recognised by just 38% of the population.

However, there was little difference between age groups, ranging from 60% of people over 65 saying they were familiar with it to 69% of those aged 25-44.

With bitcoin currently skidding below the $6000 mark, way below the $20k plus highs of late last year, most Europeans view the virtual currency markets as a risky gamble. One in three Europeans said they would never invest in the market, with 46% rating them as riskier than the share market. There is also a perception that they are difficult to understand and require expert financial advice.

Comments: (4)

Bo Harald
Bo Harald - ZEF, Transmeri, Demos, Real Time Economy Program - Helsinki Region 03 July, 2018, 09:10

Expensive, slow, uses more energy than New Zealand. Who is benefitting - criminals, terrorists and speculators. 

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A Finextra member
A Finextra member 03 July, 2018, 11:15

I agree with @Bo Harald. The headline stated "Those that do buy into the trend are more likely to be younger (aged 25-44), male and from a country with a lower per-capital income such as Turkey or Romania." - aren't these exactly the people that can't afford to 'invest' (gamble?) in Bitcoin and are presumably seduced by the possibility of rich pickings. Crazy! Other than as a marketing gimmick, I'm not aware of any major retailer accepting Bitcoin - mainly because of the huge swings in value. 

I'm also surprised at the statement that one in three would never invest, as this implies that two-thirds would consider it! 

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A Finextra member
A Finextra member 03 July, 2018, 15:32

But at the same that also means that 110m+ people are interested in bitcoin aka crypto currencies. Whilst there are challenges today, Blockchain and crypto currencies have so many broader benefits, that I believe they are to stay.

The problem is that it is not easy to get involved and many people don't understand how it works, so are nervous about getting involved. But there now initiatives, such as Bankerea and Cryptov8 that aim to make crypto currencies more accessible.

 

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Russell Bell
Russell Bell - Fastbase Ltd - Wellington 04 July, 2018, 04:02

Speaking of New Zealand, this country used to have a reasonably good Bitcoin exchange a few years ago but it was forced to close down by it's bank.  To my knowledge this was for no other reason except that it was a business that traded Bitcoin.  I've heard anecdotally that most or all of the banks here have a similar policy now; they refuse to allow businesses involved in Bitcoin to operate a regular bank account.

The level of interest in Bitcoin and ownership seems high, given the overt hostility from the traditional banking and finance sector.

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