Bitcoin: Why do some hold, when others won’t

Bitcoin has been bobbing up and down in price and it’s worth taking a look at the significant reason behind this—the people who own or don’t own the crypto. Taking a deep dive into these trends, Block, Inc., formerly Square, published a new survey of 9,500 people across major continents. Let’s take a look at their findings.

Reasons why people buy bitcoin

According to some reports on bitcoin usage in developing countries, those with lower incomes recognize the many utilities of bitcoin. This trend not only is between income groups but also on a country-by-country basis. Countries with lower GDP per capita and higher shares of income from remittances buy bitcoin. Their reason: bitcoin enables them to purchase goods and services and send money. 

Additionally, higher-income people are more likely to invest in bitcoin as they are more optimistic than lower-income people about the future of the crypto. This holds true in every region. 

Protection against inflation rates is another significant reason. 

This trend is strongly correlated with inflation rates by country, with Argentina leading the pack. But it all adds up to this: those who know it, buy it. 

The more people feel they know about cryptocurrency, the more optimistic they are about Bitcoin’s future. Additionally, there is no real gender divide between those who are optimistic versus those who are not.

However, there’s a bit of an age divide. 

Millennials have a more positive outlook on Bitcoin, while baby boomers are the least. That said, Nigeria, India, Vietnam, and Argentina have the highest rates of feeling optimistic about the future of Bitcoin. The reason is obvious. These regions have the highest claimed levels of cryptocurrency knowledge more broadly.

Then there’s the power of word of mouth. 

People who have never owned bitcoin will buy it if they personally know someone who owns bitcoin. The report finds that 73% say they are very likely to buy bitcoin in the next 12 months, compared with just 37% of those who don’t know a bitcoin holder.

Reasons why people don’t want to buy bitcoin

Not knowing enough, happens to be a common reason holding people back. 

It’s not surprising that a lack of bitcoin knowledge is why people don’t want to invest in bitcoin. Further reasons range from uncertainty around cybersecurity and theft risks, price volatility, and regulatory outlook. People who don’t own bitcoin also cited reasons like bitcoin being too expensive. Not knowing how to buy the asset, and having “no practical use for it” were among other reasons why. 

Of importance is the fact that awareness of bitcoin is higher than that of any other cryptocurrency globally. Among those surveyed in the report, millennials and baby boomers, across the globe have the highest levels of bitcoin awareness at 92.5% and 89.2%.

The cryptocurrency with the next highest level of awareness is Ethereum, a distant second at 43%. 

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