It appears Americans are losing faith in cryptocurrencies, and trust in the space is at an all-time low. A new survey suggests that approximately 41 percent of Americans – nearly half – will never invest in digital money.
One of the major problems with bitcoin and its altcoins cousins is volatility. Prices can swing up just as easily as they can swing down, and over the last two weeks, most investors have witnessed this firsthand. Bitcoin, for example, had risen to approximately $8,200 by mid-July, giving many enthusiasts cause for celebration.
It was only a week later that things began to move in the opposite direction. Bitcoin began dropping quickly, and before long, all the July progress it had made was wiped from the slate. At press time, the currency is trading for roughly $6,300 – about $2,000 less than where it was half-a-month ago.
Bitcoin’s Drop (Flickr)
From there, many altcoins began following in the currency’s footsteps. When bitcoin falls, others usually fall with it, and this time around was no exception. Ethereum – the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap and the number one competitor to bitcoin – is now trading at roughly $353. This is about $50 less than where it stood just last week, which in turn, was roughly $100 less than the position it held in mid-July. Ripple, the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency, is down by 16 percent, while Litecoin, the seventh-largest crypto by market cap, has fallen by more than nine percent.
Litecoin’s Drop (Flickr)
When Prices Drop, Trust Drops
Naturally, this takes a toll on investors’ outlooks, and cryptocurrency is losing the respect and attention it held during last year’s December rally. A poll conducted by the cryptocurrency app Gem and analytics firm Harris Insights recorded the answers of approximately 2,000 American adults. Of the individuals surveyed, only eight percent claimed to hold cryptocurrencies in their investment portfolios. It appears cryptocurrency still isn’t as popular as traditional stock options, which are held by approximately 52 percent of American adults according to a Gallup poll from 2016.
In addition, those who did not hold crypto admit that they are simply not interested, and that nothing could ever “motivate them to invest in digital assets.” It’s a disappointing outcome, considering all bitcoin enthusiasts want is for the currency to hit mainstream territory. With such an anti-crypto attitude so present throughout the country, this dream appears considerably harder to accomplish.
Are Things Worse Than Imagined?
A separate Wells Fargo survey suggests even bleaker results. The study says that only two percent of Americans are invested in bitcoin or some other form of cryptocurrency, while 26 percent say they are intrigued by digital money, but have no plans of investing in it anytime soon.
A whopping 70+ percent say that bitcoin is “too risky,” and that they would never invest in it. Hence, the goal of long-term, mainstream acceptance is pushed even further away.
A Few Positive Findings
The surveys do point out some interesting signs. For example, Americans earning a minimum of $100,000 per year are far more likely to invest in crypto, while young people between the ages of 18 and 24 are more intrigued by cryptocurrencies than older citizens and are likely to invest in digital tokens regardless of their salaries.
CEO and founder of Gem Micah Winkelspecht explains:
“We find that younger people with less income are more willing to put money in crypto. My guess is that crypto is of the digital age, and the younger generation is of the digital age and used to doing everything on the internet. The cryptocurrency space is still in its Wild West phase, so there’s potentially some of that going on, but when you have less to protect, you are more willing to take the risk. If potential investors have access to better information and cut through a lot of this noise, that could be a big opportunity for crypto.”