In July, the Bank of Canada published a study on the use of Bitcoin in Canada. The study was conducted from 12 to 15 December 2017 and is based on the 2016 Bitcoin Omnibus Survey (BTCOS).
In 2016, the Bank of Canada conducted its first study on the development of crypto currency usage. In two rounds, the researchers asked questions about Bitcoin ownership and public awareness of the crypto currency. Due to the increasing popularity of crypto currencies in 2017, the bank conducted a new study. The main objective was to measure the impact of Bitcoin on the financial market.
The results of the study show that the level of awareness of Bitcoin has risen rapidly from 2016 to 2017. While in 2016 65 percent of the study participants still knew the digital currency, the share rose to 85 percent in 2017. In addition, the number of Bitcoin users increased from 2.9 percent to 5.0 percent within one year.
Changed reasons for owning crypto currencies
The main reasons for owning Bitcoin in 2016 were the transaction benefits and the interest in the new technology. Only 12 percent of the study participants saw an investment in owning the digital currency. In contrast, 58 percent of the 2017 respondents cited the investment as the main reason for owning Bitcoin. The second reason given by 12 percent of the participants was “My friends own Bitcoin”. Transaction benefits and interest in new technologies, on the other hand, were only 10 percent.
Within one year, the reasons for owning Bitcoin as a means of transaction (39 percent to 10 percent) changed to its use as a facility (12 percent to 58 percent).
Increase in interest in Bitcoin within the company
The results of the 2017 study show that interest in Bitcoin has increased across all demographic groups. In particular, residents of British Columbia (93 percent) and Canadians with an income in excess of 70,000 Canadian dollars (92 percent) show greater awareness. Quebec has seen the largest increase within a year, from 49 percent to 77 percent.
The strongest increase in Bitcoin users continues to be among 18-24 year olds. Interesting is the increase in the use of Bitcoin in the age group from 45 to 54 years. The number of users increased by 2.6 percentage points.
In addition, Bitcoin owners are better acquainted than in 2016. However, the study shows that there is some catching up to do with regard to Bitcoin’s security knowledge. Only 13 percent of Bitcoin owners and only 3 percent of respondents who do not own a Bitcoin were able to answer the Bitcoin security question correctly.
The results of the study show that the reasons for using Bitcoin are changing. It remains to be seen how these dynamics and the increasing awareness of crypto currencies will influence the financial system in the future. However, Bitcoin’s ownership still seems very attractive as an investment.