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Crypto-cryptic

Crypto still cryptic to most Aussies

  • Many Australians would use crypto but most don’t understand it.
  • Yet about one in five Aussies have invested in digital currencies.
  • Global interest from central banks is beginning to surge.

Cryptocurrency is still cryptic to most Australians despite the rising popularity of the blockchain technology and global talk of adopting central bank digital currencies (CBDC).

A recent Saxo Markets survey found that while many Aussies would use cryptocurrency if it were legal tender, most do not understand what “crypto” means.

The survey found that some 42% of Australians would use cryptocurrencies alongside mainstream money but just 11% of those surveyed thought they understood what crypto means.

Despite this, according to the Independent Reserve Cryptocurrency Index (IRCI), about one in five Aussies have invested in digital currencies, making the country one of the major digital currency markets in the world.

Crypto is creeping into the finance mainstream lexicon.

There has been market chatter recently regarding central bank digital currencies (CBDC), which is a digital form of central bank money accessible to the general public. 

It consists of individual people and firms that can access transaction and savings accounts with their home country’s central bank.

G7 officials have endorsed principles for CBDC, and with more than 80 countries said to be launching some form of related initiatives, widespread deployment could come soon in what might push digital coins more into the mainstream.

Reports suggest that if CBDC became widespread then unregulated cryptos could remain niche and not replace cash and legal tender.

It’s something that entities such as the powerful Federal Reserve in the US and the Reserve Bank of Australia monitor, as part of their mandates to check the risks to their own country’s financial system.

While forecasting trends in the financial sector can be difficult if not impossible, the adoption of crypto in the context of CBDC could come at a slow pace, if at all, or as quickly as a volcano eruption given how unpredictable digital coins have proven to be.

Bitcoin and Ethereum are the two most well-known digital coins in the country, followed by Dogecoin.

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