Ten percent of European households own cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. This is according to the Financial Stability Review, a two-year publication of the European Central Bank (ECB). With 14%, the Netherlands is high on the European list.
Bitcoin in ECB report
This publication provides an overview of possible risks to financial stability in the euro area. The target group is the financial sector in Europe and other interested parties. Central bank analysts have now primarily examined the cryptocurrency market and its impact on the eurozone’s financial situation.
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They conclude, among other things, that recent price fluctuations did not pose a major risk to the global financial system. This can be explained because the crypto market is still a relatively small asset class in 2022.
Researchers warn: As soon as larger parties like pension funds and insurance companies start embracing cryptocurrencies as an investment, the risks will also increase. The asset class then grows, and the correlation with the traditional markets also increases because professional investors invest in a more diversified way than pure bitcoin players.
The report also contains research results from the Consumer Expectation Survey (CES), conducted by the ECB. This sample of six major euro area countries shows that 10% of households own cryptocurrencies.
The ECB’s consumer survey shows that the Netherlands scores high on the European list. 14% of Dutch households own cryptocurrencies, while this percentage in France is 6%. Some other dates:
- About 37% of respondents indicated that they have cryptocurrencies with a value of up to 999 euros.
- 29 percent have cryptocurrencies with a total value between 1,000 euros and 4,999 euros.
- 13 percent have cryptocurrencies between 5,000 euros and 9,999 euros.
It is especially the wealthy who also see opportunities in cryptocurrencies, while lower incomes scored relatively higher than middle incomes.
On average, young men and highly educated respondents are more likely to invest in cryptocurrencies in the countries surveyed. Respondents who score high or low on having financial knowledge mainly possess cryptocurrencies. ‘
ECB researchers recognize that the crypto market is a global market and therefore advocate a coordinated framework of rules worldwide.
“Based on the developments observed so far, the cryptocurrency markets are currently showing all signs of a new financial stability risk.”
The ECB clearly sees bitcoin as a speculative asset rather than a predictable and reliable means of safekeeping and payment. President Christine Lagarde recently cracked bitcoin in the Dutch television program College Tour. Bitcoin is worthless because its value is not supported by intrinsic value. She (and her employer, the ECB) also believe that these assets are unsuitable as an investment for the vast majority of the European population. Therefore, there is a ‘rapid’ need for new laws, also because this new new industry would pose a threat to the financial stability of the euro area.
Meanwhile, the eurozone is struggling with rising inflation, and the ECB is facing the choice of lowering interest rates, as the US Federal Reserve is doing. So far, Lagarde has always kept that possibility to himself, also because the debt burden of the southern European countries will then thin the eurozone heavier. There is also fear of stagflation, a combination of high prices and economic downturn.
Price in euros at Bitvavo:
Disclaimer: This is not financial advice. Cryptocurrencies are risky assets.
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