Concerned Argentinians are pinning their hopes on cryptocurrency for financial opportunities as the nation’s economy crumbles with a weak currency, rocketing prices and high inflation — and a lack of U.S. dollars to invest in, Agence France-Presse reports today.
Binance exchange’s Latin America Director Maximiliano Hinz commented, “The number of user accounts for investing in ‘cryptos’ has multiplied by 10 in Argentina since 2020. ”The country of 45 million now has nearly two million cryptocurrency trading accounts, the report added.
But an independent report by Explica provided a different figure, putting the number of cryptocurrency users in the country at one million, citing “several relevant personalities of the crypto ecosystem” in the region.
Fueling the demand for digital currencies are investors hungry for safe haven as economic opportunities in Buenos Aires disappear. Argentines are said to be betting on Bitcoin, Tether, Dai, and Ethereum as a buffer, but also on US-dollar-pegged cryptos to avoid BTC’s volatility.
The lingering global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is further cited as one of the main drivers for cryptocurrency adoption in the South American country, as many residents look for ways to protect their wallets from rising inflation.
The country has been in recession since 2018, with inflation over the last three years averaging 45 percent, while the gross domestic product (GDP) contracted by 9.9 percent in 2020. The unemployment rate stands at 11 percent.