New Survey: Wealthy Millenials Very Interested in Crypto

Avi Rosten

A new survey has today shown that young wealthy people are increasingly interested in the cryptocurrency space.

According to consultant Capgemini’s World Wealth Report 2018, wealth management firms will need to move beyond their “ambivalence” towards providing their young wealthy clients with information about cryptocurrency investments.

Reporting that more than 25% of the High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) surveyed “place importance” on getting information about cryptocurrencies, the survey showed that the percentage is even higher for millionaires under the age of 40 - with the figure increasing to 70% for this demographic.

The survey also showed that globally just over 39% of HNWIs say the primary reason they would hold cryptocurrencies is for investment return, while 19% view them as an alternative store of value.

Strong Regional Variation

Of particular interest is the regional differences with regards to HNWI's attitudes towards purchasing and holding cryptocurrencies. With North American, European and Japanese interest levels among the lowest, a clear standout was Latin America - where nearly 60% of HNWIs showed high interest levels in cryptocurrency investments.

hnwi capgemini.pngSource: Capgemini

This enormous interest in Latin America in particular will not be surprising to many given the precarious position of the Venezuelan economy, the rapid inflation and the country’s soaring adoption of bitcoin.

While undoubtedly more and finer-grained research will be needed before we can predict an unequivocally bright future for crypto investment, this latest survey will give some hope to investors in the current bearish atmosphere.

Bitcoin Trading at $600 Premium in India as Potential Ban Looms

Bitcoin (BTC) is currently trading at a roughly $600 premium in India, according to the market price available on the rupee-based exchange BitBns.com.

At the time of writing, bitcoin trades for just under 8 lakh rupees, or 800,000 INR, which is nearly $11,500 - significantly more than the going dollar price of $10,860.

This extreme price premium can be attributed to the difficulty of buying crypto in the country. As of last year, all regulated Indian banks and financial institutions have been banned from transacting in, and offering services related to crypto.

But the environment could soon become even more hostile.

CryptoGlobe reported in late April that a government working group made up of Indian tax, consumer protection, and general economic ministries had recommended a complete ban on even transacting or owning cryptoassets, much less integrating them into the mainstream, legal economy.

Bitcoin Demand Strong in India?

BitBns, one of the few operational rupee-denominated exchanges remaining, has apparently been able to skirt the increasingly draconian environment by allowing users to conduct their own P2P market, facilitated by the website, in order to buy and sell in Indian rupees. Other popular Indian exchanges, like Coindelta, have been forced to shut down.

The high premium may suggest a healthy demand in India for bitcoin and other cryptoassets, as Indians without international banking connections are forced to use the local currency to buy crypto. Data from crypto analytics website Coin.dance show that another popular crypto-fiat P2P platform, LocalBitcoins, has seen a sharp uptick in Indian trading volume since March-April.

indialocalbitcoins.png(source: Coin.dance)

CryptoGlobe reported last month that volumes were not affected by, and even increased in spite of, the threat of a crypto ban.

Indian Government Measures

One recent instance in particular shows just how far the Indian government seems to be going to control the Indian economy.

In late 2016, the national government suddenly and without warning even to its own ministries, declared that all 500- and 1,000-rupee banknotes currently in circulation were null and void - in an action that is known in India as “Demonetization.” These notes represented more than half of the physical money then in circulation in the country.

While the stated aims of the action were to root out corruption and “black money” from the economy, Demonetization has often been panned as a disastrous failure that cost 1% of the country’s GDP, a loss of 1.5 million jobs, and hurt the poor most of all.