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Cryptocurrency

Nigeria leads Africa combined in Q2 2020 on BTC P2P

It shows that BTC is fast gaining the trust of Nigerians for payments and transfers.

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MicroStrategy's Bitcoin holdings now worth $783 million, Canadian investment company buys more Bitcoin, Bitcoin price drops $1400 in minutes, Binance, BTC wallets holdings 0.1 BTC reaches all time high, 13,000 BTC wallets are now worth more than $1,000,000

Nigerians increasing their use of BTC is no longer news, but what seems astonishing is the volume that Nigerians transacted with BTCs in Q2 2020, compared to other African countries. Data shows that the use of Bitcoin for peer to peer lending in Nigeria is on an astronomical run.

Recent statistics obtained from usefultulips, a BTC analytic data provider, showed that Nigeria led the pack with more than $34.4 million, while the closest rival, South Africa, had a transactional value of just $15.2 million during the last 90 days.

READ ALSO: Covid-19: Guinness Nigeria warns investors its results will be bad

Among top countries in the last 90 days leading in peer to peer Bitcoin transactional trades on the African continent are:

Nigeria – $34.4 million dollars
South Africa – $15.2 million dollars
Kenya – $7.8 million
Ghana – $640,000
Tanzania – $600,000

Quick Facts: In BTC’s case, peer to peer is the exchange of BTC between parties (such as individuals) without the involvement of a central authority. This means that peer to peer use of BTC takes a decentralized approach in the exchange of Bitcoins between individuals and groups.

It shows that BTC’s long-running narrative as the “digital gold” for hedging against global economic turmoil is gaining the trust of Nigerians for payments and transfers.

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The financial market turmoil triggered by COVID-19 has definitely changed the way Nigerians view the whole financial system, as data also obtained from Google trend shows Nigeria leading the pack around the world in Bitcoin searches. This is a testament to the fact that Nigerians truly love their Bitcoins.

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Olumide Adesina is a France-born Nigerian. He is a Certified Investment Trader, with more than 15 years of working expertise in Investment trading. Message Olumide on Twitter @tokunboadesina. He is a Member of the Chartered Financial Analyst Society.

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Business News

Paypal’s Venmo now permits cryptocurrency trading

Venmo will support four different cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin.

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Venmo, a mobile payment service owned by PayPal has announced that it has started allowing users to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrencies on its app. Just like PayPal, Venmo will support four different cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin, and users can carry out transactions with as little as $1 on the app

Founded in 2009, Venmo has over 70 million users and it is one of the most popular payment channels in the US. The payment platform processed around $159 billion in payments last year.

Since the app functions like a social network, adding cryptocurrency will offer a more user-friendly feel for people who love buying and selling crypto.

READ: 28 million merchants to be granted crypto usage on PayPal

As bigger companies show more interest in cryptocurrency, there will be wider adoption of virtual currencies in future. Venmo is the latest payment app that is offering support for cryptocurrency on its platform.

Paypal, the parent company of Venmo is one of the most active companies in the crypto space as it allows users to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrencies in their digital wallets. Paypal users can also spend their coins at millions of merchants globally.

Crypto on Venmo is enabled through PayPal’s partnership with Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of cryptocurrency products and services.

What they are saying

Darrell Esch, Venmo’s Senior Vice President and general manager said “Our goal is to provide our customers with an easy-to-use platform that simplifies the process of buying and selling cryptocurrencies and demystifies some of the common questions and misconceptions that consumers may have.”

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ABCON asks CBN to check impact of cryptocurrencies on diaspora remittances

The association also noted that the apex bank needs to address other issues driving the patronage of cryptocurrency exchanges for remittance transfers.

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ABCON disagrees with those calling for naira devaluation

The Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to introduce measures that will neutralize the positive effects of cryptocurrencies as a channel for diaspora remittances.

This is to redirect diaspora remittances away from cryptocurrency exchanges to official channels and also protect such against potential disruptions.

This call was made by ABCON during its Quarterly Economic Review for the first quarter of 2021 where it commended the CBN for the N5/$ rebate scheme introduced to encourage diaspora Nigerians to use official channels to remit their funds.

However, the association noted that the apex bank needs to address other issues driving the patronage of cryptocurrency exchanges for remittance transfers.

READ: Nigeria among worst countries to start a career, and they all don’t accept crypto

What ABCON is saying in their statement

The association in its statement said, “It is noteworthy that public acceptability for cryptocurrency exchanges are rising which could be quite accountable for the wide drop in diaspora inflows to Nigeria. Insecurity in the country is giving it greater prominence as investors and citizens are finding Cryptocurrency a safe haven for their wealth in case of any eventuality.

In most Emerging Markets Bitcoin transfers surged last year, as the pandemic exposed the cheaper and more efficient digital remittance services. Migrants sending money across borders to their families prefer the minimal transaction costs of cryptocurrency exchanges against the exorbitant costs of traditional money transfer companies like Western Union.”

READ: Atsu Davoh is building ways for Africans to easily acquire and spend cryptocurrency

According to ABCON, “Cryptocurrency transactions are faster than the conventional transfers, which require passing through banks reliant SWIFT, the sluggish, half-century-old interbank messaging system that handles cross-border payments.

These exchanges override the political complications of official channels. The global reach of cryptocurrencies avoids the inflation risk inherent to official currencies, especially in politically unstable countries reliant on fickle foreign investors.

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Thus, while we commend the efforts of CBN in introducing the package of Five Naira for One Dollar transfer, it can be seen from the analysis above that the challenges exceed just non-payment of foreign currency by the IMTCs and the exchange rate. Strategies that satisfy the most sensitive of these advantages of Cryptocurrency exchanges must be introduced to redirect flows to the official channel.”

ABCON also expressed concerns over the country’s huge unemployment rate, urging the government to apply radical approaches with the use of both conventional and unconventional economic and political tools to redress the trend.

READ: Afreximbank President reveals ways Nigeria can boost diaspora participation in economy

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What you should know

  • It can be recalled that the apex bank had about 2 months ago, warned the Deposit Money Banks, Non-Financial Institutions and other Financial Institutions against doing business in crypto and other digital assets.
  • The CBN directed financial institutions to immediately close the accounts of persons or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges, warning of severe regulatory sanctions in the event of any breach of the directive.
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had a few days ago, revealed that it is working with the CBN for a better understanding and regulation of cryptocurrencies in the country.

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