Russia and Venezuela Lead LocalBitcoins Volumes
Do you LocalBitcoins? This is a proxy that you can use to understand where is Bitcoin being traded. While it is easy to see the brute volume of BTC being traded around the world, it is harder to see where does it comes from without using these tools. However, when you use them, you can get some important insights that will help you to understand the market better.
For instance, you will know that Russia has the biggest volume in the world at 26.5%. That makes sense as the country is huge and has many traders, however, you may be surprised to see Venezuela at 12.2% and the U. S. at only 11.8%. When you consider that, in 2013, 90% of the volume came from the U. S., the U. K. and Australia, it is interesting to see that they have a mere 19% of the market now.
However, it should be noted that this only sees the volume of P2P exchanges, not the ones made inside online exchanges, so countries like the U. S. and some Asian countries may be very under-represented in the charts.
A rise in the percentage generally means that the country is now using more Bitcoin. In some cases like China, for instance, it could also mean that the current structure in how the exchanges work, like the fact that they were banned in China.
However, the data has some serious issues, too, as The Block Crypto reported. For instance, the volumes are not converted from the local currency to USD and there is no way to weight the volume per the population of each country.
What does this mean? At the end of the day, it means that Russia most likely appears in first because it has a lot of people and Venezuela appears because of the inflation. In a country facing as much inflation as Venezuela is doing right now, the volumes tend to be higher. Sure, the country is using more Bitcoin, but the limitations of the data might actually harm its clarity.
The Block Crypto has made a very interesting analysis with the data gathered from LocalBitcoins. For instance, it sees a constant growth in the United States from 2013 to 2017 while most other countries start using it in 2017 a lot. When you analyze China’s volume, for instance, you can see the external shocks that the government has enforced in the crypto system, for instance.
Even after using data to analyze the charts, though, they have reached the same conclusion as we did just glancing over the charts: Russia is starting to dominate the market. Even with all the grey area in the legislation in the country, there is a very strong market for Bitcoin in Russia that exploded there last year.
Another insight is that developing countries are slowly using more Bitcoin as developed countries are slowing its use.
When you adjust the use of Bitcoin to the number of people living in the country, though, the numbers change a lot. Venezuela is farther in the first place followed by Russia and then Sweden. Colombia and the United Kingdom appear later, followed by Australia, The U. S., Nigeria and other countries.