Venezuela's Largest Department Store is Accepting Bitcoin Payments

Omar Faridi
  • Venezuela's citizens have increasingly been using cryptocurrencies, as the nation's fiat currency, the Bolivar, has become worthless due to hyperinflation.
  • A Reddit user from Venezuela has bought over 800 items with the bitcoin (BTC) donations she received.

One of Venezuela’s largest department stores has reportedly started accepting cryptocurrency payments. According to Reddit user, u/ImViTo, donations from several people allowed her to purchase over 800 items (mostly school supplies and clothing) for $260 in the flagship cryptocurrency, bitcoin.

She also noted that the Venezuelan retail store was accepting payments in dash, ether (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH), and litecoin (LTC). Moreover, the reddit user said the generous crypto donations were a sign of “real help” and “real adoption” of digital currencies.

Bitcoin Trading Volumes Surge In Venezuela

As CryptoGlobe reported recently, bitcoin trading volumes in Venezuela through peer-to-peer (P2P) cryptocurrency exchange service LocalBitcoins have increased considerably. This may largely be attributed to the rising inflation rates in Venezuela and the country’s struggling economy.

As covered, Venezuela’s government has launched its own cryptocurrency (the Petro), however, extensive investigations have revealed that there is no evidence of the state-backed digital currency being used in international, or day-to-day transactions.

In other countries that have been a target of US-led economic sanctions, such as Iran, there are also signs of increasing cryptocurrency adoption. However, trading digital assets may no longer be as simple as it had been for Iranian citizens.

Binance Forced To Ban Iranian Users From Its Exchange

This, as large crypto exchanges like Binance, Bittrex, and BitMEX have moved towards banning users linked to IP addresses in Iran and those who’ve completed know-your-customer (KYC) checks using Iranian passports.

Local sources in Iran reported recently that they had received emails from Binance’s customer support team that told them withdraw their funds from the exchange.

In the emails, BInance’s representatives reportedly said that the crypto trading platform was being forced to deny services to users in Iran as it had to comply with internationally imposed sanctions on the so-called rogue state. North Korea, which is another isolated country that has been a target of US-led political and economic sanctions, has been trying to use cryptocurrencies to conduct international transactions.

North Korea Uses "Enablers" To Orchestrate Crypto Scams

However, reports strongly suggest that North Korea may also be misusing digital currencies to engage in highly exploitative activities such as attempting to raise funds via “vast” and “illicit” networks.

Notably a cybersecurity firm, the Insikt Group, found that the North Korean leadership has been using advanced internet tools to communicate with their “enablers” in Singapore, Thailand, and various other countries. These “enablers” are reportedly helping North Korea’s government orchestrate large-scale crypto and blockchain-related scams.

Weekly Newsletter

Bitcoin Dominance Bump Unlikely to Last — Market Analysis

The entire crypto market seems to be going risk-off and turning to a state of correction, after an excellent start to 2020 throughout January and February which saw significant gains. This is reflected in the brief pop in Bitcoin market dominance. But in the longer term, it’s a different story, and we must always bear in mind the intercourse the conflicting trends of different timeframes – and how they can still agree with each other.

Here, rather than focusing on any specific crypto, we’ll look at the market as a whole using some trusted indicators.

We first look at a small-to-medium-timeframe chart of Bitcoin plus Bitcoin’s market dominance arrayed against the “Others” market dominance, Others being a basket of all altcoins below the top 10. This panoply of charts gives us a broad insight into the whole market.

just some speedbumpsBTC chart by TradingView

During January and some of February, we can see clear risk-taking in the form of a rising altcoin market share. Bitcoin’s price was rising even as its dominance was falling: peak altcoin conditions, where so much buying is coming into the system that more entities are buying Bitcoin than selling Bitcoin for altcoins, even when there is a lot of that.

This pattern has reversed in the past few days, with Bitcoin’s price falling even as its dominance rose, with altcoins being sold back into Bitcoin. The market was overheated in the short term, and people are wisely hedging their profits.

But this trend is unlikely to last. Zooming out and looking at a chart of Ethereum/Bitcoin and both dominance charts again (with Ethereum being a general proxy for the altcoin market), we see a different story.

the bigger picture says the opposite thingETH chart by TradingView

There is a lot going on here. First we can note that Ethereum – again, bearing in mind its role as a general proxy for altcoins – has retaken a very important inflection line that it lost during 2019, the dotted line. It is likely, based on this line retaken last week, that Ethereum is starting a long term uptrend against Bitcoin – and that altcoins in general will do the same in the long term.

Moving to the Bitcoin dominance display in the middle panel, we see an agreement of the above thesis. Bitcoin’s dominance has fallen below its own critical level, namely the area near and above 70%, which BTC held for a while during 2019. This level had not been held since 2017, when Bitcoin put in its all-time-high – and it now looks to be trending steadily away from it again.

This trending away will again provide the space for altcoins to grow in market share, and we have already seen the beginning of this trend during 2020. Perhaps what we have seen was only ‘Round One’.

And moving below to the Others dominance, we see that this indicator has, yet again, taken an important level of 6% and is likely trending away from it. This is the same message in reverse: this level was first tickled during the first real altcoin mega-rally, in the beginning of 2017, and stayed above it for years. It was lost for a time in 2019, about the same time Bitcoin retook its level of 70%.

The larger trends are likely moving in the opposite direction than the shorter ones. Bitcoin's price, based on these indicators, is likely to continue rising even as its market share continues to falls. Altcoins, after years of being battered, are likely to continue gaining market share; and in that situation, the pie can only be getting larger overall.

The views and opinions expressed here do not reflect those of and do not constitute financial advice. Always do your own research.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via