The impact of Bitcoin’s growing popularity is being felt across the world. While these changes aren’t that evident in liberal economies, it is visible in plain sight in China. Individual investors in China are increasingly adopting Bitcoin as an instrument for investment over conventional stocks.
Even though their ticket sizes are small, individual investors represent a significant chunk of investments in the market. In the current economic scenario, individual investors shifting from conventional assets to digital currency doesn’t come as a surprise. The risks associated with Bitcoin and other digital currencies are adequately compensated by their potential returns, which is higher than any other asset at the moment.
The Chinese investors have never been risk-averse, the trend shows them repeatedly investing in speculative assets over time. A combination of economic slowdown and capital controls have only increased the interest in digital currencies. Recent data shows a huge decline in investments this year compared to statistics from 2014 and 2015. At the same time, Bitcoin trading on Chinese exchanges has gone up drastically. In August, the BTC/CNY trading pair dominated the market, commanding over 90% of total trades.
A recent article on an online media publication lists various factors influencing this trend. The list contains more than just the economic factors.
The Love for Gambling
A psychological factor influencing Bitcoin trading among the Chinese; The love for gambling and volatile nature of Bitcoin prices makes an ideal match, says the Chief Marketing Officer of HaoBTC, Eric Mu.
Fast and Easy Money, No Government Involvement
Being a decentralized currency, Bitcoin is not under the control of any government or an institution. Also, the absence of comprehensive regulations makes it easier for the Chinese individual investors to invest as much as they can spare on Bitcoin for trading. The volatility helps traders to make some quick profits as well. Further, the Chinese exchanges make it more convenient for traders by waiving off transaction fees.
The capital controls implemented by Chinese government makes it almost impossible to convert Chinese yuan to any other currency. This leaves behind Bitcoin as the go-to currency which can be bought with Yuan and then converted to any currency of choice.
The recent losses incurred by stock market investors due to failing economy and government policies have also influenced their decision to move from Stock market trading to Bitcoin trading.
Dominance in Bitcoin Mining
Chinese mining pools continue to be the highest contributor of hashing power to the global Bitcoin network. The mining community constantly spends newly generated Bitcoin to fund their mining operations, adding to the trade volume.
Support for Margin Trades
The Chinese exchanges, Huobi and OKCoin offer favorable margin trading services, at a cost. Chinese investors can leverage anywhere between 1:1 to 1:5 to short Bitcoin.
A wide range of factors has resulted in China’s emergence as the largest Bitcoin trading nation.
Ref: Quartz | Chart: Bitcoinity | Image: NewsBTC