South Korea has seen a serious surge in the overall value of investments made in cryptocurrencies throughout the past 12 months. With many calling the bottom of the market, are South Korean investors buying the dip?
Korean Investments Surge, Not Yet 2017
Citing a recent report, cryptocurrency data firm Messari outlines that the number of investors committed in the crypto market throughout the past 12 months has increased from 6.4% to 7.4% in South Korea.
More impressively, however, Korean people tend to invest 64.2% more throughout the past 12 months. As such, the average amount invested in cryptocurrency by the regular retail investor in the country is $6,100 and it is up nearly two-fold since back in 2018. According to the report, the majority of the investors are aged in their 40s and 50s.
The study has been conducted throughout the six largest cities in the country and it has targeted investors who are between 25 and 64 years old.
Of course, it’s also important to note that the number of cryptocurrency investors in South Korea is nowhere near what it used to be back in 2017 at the peak of the market bubble. Back then, around 30 percent of salaried workers had invested in cryptocurrencies and most had made notable returns upwards of 400 percent, according to a survey.
What’s Causing the Increase?
The cryptocurrency market has declined notably since its heights back in winter 2017, when Bitcoin reached $20,000. Back then, the entire market was valued at more than $800 billion, while its total capitalization currently sits at a little less than $180 billion – a decrease of about 77 percent.
Looking at the past 12 months, which is the survey’s period, we see that the market has actually depreciated price-wise. A year ago, Bitcoin was trading at around $9,000, while it’s price at the time of this writing revolves around $5,300. Despite being up 40 percent in 2019, Bitcoin is still a long way to go in terms of a larger recovery.
The entire market sees relatively the same picture. One year ago, the total market cap was $393 billion, which is almost $200 billion more than its current state.
The bottom line is that the past 12 months haven’t been so good for the prices of cryptocurrencies.
Despite this fact, however, the number of investors, as well as the total amount of investments in cryptocurrencies ins South Korea surged notably.
Perhaps one of the reasons for this is the work that’s been carried out in the space. We’ve seen some notable moves of adoption, which might be fueling investor’s beliefs.
The past 12 months have seen marquee companies such as Microsoft, Starbucks, the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), Nasdaq, Samsung, and many others venture in the field of blockchain in one way or another.
Moreover, towards the end of 2018, South Korea granted an information security management system (ISMS) license to Upbit, which was a key moment. At the same time, October of 2018 saw a surge in trading volume in South Korea as KRW trading volumes throughout certain days actually accounted for almost 50% of the total market share.