Russians hold cryptocurrencies worth $214 billion, which is 12% of the entire cryptocurrency market. This explains why the government wants to regulate them but without the crackdown hypothesized by the Russian Central Bank.
Russians and cryptocurrencies
That cryptocurrencies were particularly appreciated in Russia was already known since December, when data reported by Tass cited investments for 5 trillion rubles.
But those reported now by Bloomberg speak of 16.5 trillion rubles, therefore a much higher figure.
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Perhaps it is because of these figures that President Putin does not want to impose a ban as requested by the Russian Central Bank. Evidently it makes more sense to tax investments in cryptocurrencies than to ban them, which is also a bit the thesis of former president Medvedev. Recently the latter stated that when something is prohibited, the opposite effect is usually reached: as if to say that the prohibition would not stop investments anyway. It would be better to make them legal and apply a tax levy.
12% of Russians own crypto
After all, the data reported by Triple A confirm that Russia has one of the highest number of crypto investors in the world.
According to this data, 11.91% of the population or over 17 million people have cryptocurrencies.
On a ranking basis, Russia is third in absolute value, behind India (100 million crypto holders), and the United States (27 million). Instead, the country is second in percentage ratio: only Ukraine with 5.5 million crypto investors or 12.73% of the population does better. The US slips into sixth position with “only” 8.31% of the population having invested in cryptocurrencies.
That Russians seem to like Bitcoin a lot is also evidenced by a World Gold Council report that had noted that cryptocurrencies were preferred more than gold for investment (October 2020 data). In this survey, 17% of more than 2,000 respondents admitted to investing in crypto in the previous 12 months, more than the 16% who preferred gold.
This was the period before the bullrun that would be triggered right from October 2020, which suggests that crypto investors in Russia have increased.
In short, there are all the clues to say for sure that cryptocurrencies are a popular reality in Russia and the government is choosing not to ignore it.