Cryptocurrency Europe

Lockdown alters crypto trading habits as consumer confidence falters and rebounds

  • Proprietary Revolut data shows the average amount of cryptocurrency bought by U.K users (-58%) and the per trade amounts (-52%) dropped as lockdown restrictions came into place in mid-March

  • The end of April saw a huge rebound in consumer confidence, with the number of users trading cryptocurrency(+68%), the total amount bought per users (+57%) and the value per trade rapidly (+63%) increasing week commencing 20th April

  • Bitcoin (BTC) remained the most popular cryptocurrency throughout the period, followed by Ripple (XRP), Ethereum (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC)

Today Revolut, the Financial Super App with over 10 million customers in the U.K and Europe, reveals figures outlining how the cryptocurrency market has changed on a week by week basis during the lockdown period. The proprietary Revolut data has been gathered from the 3 million Revolut customers in the U.K who have used Revolut’s cryptocurrency trading service, which allows users to buy and sell Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ripple (XRP), Ethereum (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC).

Crypto trading habits mirror consumer confidence

Revolut’s data shows that from 16th to 30th March a significant drop occurred in both the average amount of crypto bought by UK users per week (-58% from £541.05 to £229.29) and the average amount per crypto trade (-52% from £281.80 to £133.79) as lockdown measures came into place and uncertainty, particularly around finances, increased. As lockdown continued, interest in cryptocurrencies remained relatively stable until the week commencing 20th April when, driven by a BTC surge, interest in the market began to increase and users began to purchase more and at higher values. From 20th April to 4th May, the number of users buying cryptocurrencies rose 68%, the average amount of cryptocurrency bought by users increased by 57% and the amount bought per trade increased 63%.

As the possibility of a ‘return to normal’ began to look more likely, interest in selling cryptocurrencies increased too. From 20th April to 4th May, the number of users selling cryptocurrencies rose 38%, the average amount of cryptocurrency sold by users increased by 36% and the amount sold per trade increased 13%.

Bitcoin domination

Throughout the lockdown period, Bitcoin (BTC) dominated purchasing habits, with a total 51% share of the cryptocurrency trading market through Revolut. This was followed by Ripple (XRP) at 20%, Ethereum (ETH) at 14% and Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BTC), at 8% respectively.

While Bitcoin consistently remained the most popular cryptocurrency to purchase over the lockdown period, average trade sizes fluctuated wildly between different currencies. Average trade sizes peaked week commencing 4th May at £282, and were lowest at £134 on the 30th March, the week when lockdown restrictions came into place.

(Average amount of crypto, in GBP, bought by Brits per trade)

Age matters

Revolut’s data also shows a significant age split, highlighting how different age groups buy and sell cryptocurrency. Those in the 55-64 age group buy at the highest value of £345 per trade, whereas those in the 18-24 age group trade at the lowest value, at £109 per trade. Bitcoin (BTC) is the most popular cryptocurrency to both buy and sell across all age groups.

UK compared to Europe

While crypto trading trends were replicated broadly across Europe, Revolut’s data highlighted that Brits trade at considerably higher volumes and per-trade amounts compared to their European counterparts. From week commencing 16th March to week commencing 18th May, those in the UK bought an average of £399 per week of cryptocurrency, whereas across Europe as a whole, this sat at £280 – 30% lower. In the UK, the average transaction for buying crypto was £231 during lockdown, a figure which dropped by 27% to £168 across the whole of Europe.

Author

  • Editorial Director of the The Fintech Times

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