Russians are Rushing to Buy Bitcoin as COVID-19 Pandemic Continues
As governments around the world continue to battle ill-effects of the ongoing COVID pandemic, Bitcoin is turning out an investment of choice among developing and emerging economies.
Bitcoin spikes in Russia
A study by Russia’s RBC on June 4 noted Bitcoin trading and exchange volumes are surging across the country’s local exchanges. Most volume seems to have increased from March onwards - around the same time when COVID intensified. The report comes even as Russia considers banning the issuance and trading of cryptocurrencies in the country.
Officials from the Russian chapter of Binance, Garantex, and EXMO shared insights with the Russian publication, confirming the growth in users originating from the country. All the bourses have mandatory KYC policies in place, meaning the reported figures are accurate.
As the users have grown, so have volumes. Gleb Kostarev from Binance Russia reveals registrations in April 2020 were about twice those of December 2019. He further noted: "It is worth noting separately that the popularity of futures trading is growing among Russians.”
Kostareb added trading volumes of Bitcoin and other crypto-products, in May, were double of March and almost “five times as high” as recorded in January.
However, Garantex’s Sergey Mendelev said the increase in activity did not necessarily mean people were actively withdrawing the any profits or their initial assets. Meanwhile, EXMO’s Sergey Zhdanov stated user activity on the exchange’s site increased over 20 percent, with 12 percent of that metric being Russian users.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has led to self-isolated and a lack of income for many people. With such a backdrop, analysts believe traders and new investors are being driven to cryptocurrency and traditional markets in the search of volatility, and in turn, profits.
As reported by Blockchain.News, a report by Bloomberg earlier this week noted an increase in Bitcoin trading activity alongside a decrease in volatility compared to traditional markets.
The report singled out Bitcoin as a “safe hedge” comparable to gold and claimed the general population is both aware and affected by incandescent money printing by global governments - which economists believe can lead to eventual inflation.
The report went on to suggest Bitcoin prices reaching over $20,000 in 2020, although such predictions have proven false in the past. Meanwhile, Virgin Galactic CEO Chamath Paliyapitaya does not believe the corona will prove a bullish factor for Bitcoin, stating the notion is "idiotic."
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