Venezuelans See Bitcoin as Alternative to Bolivar, Volumes Hit Record High

Recent data from VeneBloc‏ ‏pointed out that Venezuelans’ Bitcoin trading volume has ‎jumped to the equivalent of $1.009 million in bolivars on April 17. There seems to be ‎ever-increasing excitement about the cryptocurrency in Venezuela amid growing ‎economic chaos, and the highest inflation rate in the world.‎

‎Individuals and businesses are swapping bolivars ‎for cryptocurrencies in order to buy daily life necessities or pay their ‎employees.‎

Venezuelan people sees the digital currency as a safe alternative in ‎an economy where the government has enforced strict foreign ‎exchange controls since 2003, combined with inflation rate that is running at an ‎estimated 9000 percent just over the past calendar year.‎

Venezuelans often exchange altcoins against Bolivar ‎through P2Ps services, like LocalBitcoins, a Finland-based exchange ‎that allows users to transact cryptocurrencies on their own terms.‎

There are no official statistics on the number of cryptocurrency users ‎in Venezuela, but according to some local-based brokerages the ‎number has increased to more than 90,000 by the end of 2017. ‎

Although cryptocurrencies have been prone to extreme volatility, ‎the fluctuation is negligible compared to the devalued Bolivar, which depreciated ‎recently to 845,000 unit against the US dollar on the black market.‎

Earlier this year, Venezuela’s government has issued its ‎own ‎cryptocurrency, Petro, which is allegedly backed by barrels of oil from the country’s ‎crude reserves.‎

President Nicolas Maduro said that the newly-issued ‎virtual coin will become legal tender for all government ‎transactions within the next several months and claimed that the petro ICO has raised more than $5 billion. ‎However, independent analysts argue the vast majority ‎of frenzy ‎surrounding PTR is either a scam or far too ambitious for ‎its own ‎good.‎

The state-backed cryptocurrency hit another snag last month as ‎US ‎authorities once more sounded the bell ‎to remind American investors ‎about the sanctions that the US ‎maintain on the South American ‎country.‎

The decision bars all people and companies subject to US jurisdiction ‎from touching the petro, ‎since it constitutes, in ‎essence, a government debt ‎issuance.‎ Trump authorized the US ‎Treasury ‎Department to issue any necessary regulations to enforce ‎his order.‎

(Photo: Geograph)

bitcoin
Bitcoin (BTC) $ 30,104.00 2.24%
ethereum
Ethereum (ETH) $ 2,026.36 2.47%
tether
Tether (USDT) $ 0.999752 0.18%
bnb
BNB (BNB) $ 317.88 1.14%
usd-coin
USD Coin (USDC) $ 1.00 0.17%
xrp
XRP (XRP) $ 0.418755 1.14%
binance-usd
Binance USD (BUSD) $ 1.00 0.25%
cardano
Cardano (ADA) $ 0.536867 2.20%
solana
Solana (SOL) $ 51.95 3.56%
dogecoin
Dogecoin (DOGE) $ 0.086243 0.85%
S&P 500  ^GSPC 
$3,901.36  $0.5700  (0.01%)
Dow Jones Industrial Average  ^DJI 
$31,261.90  $8.80  (0.03%)
NASDAQ Composite  ^IXIC 
$11,354.62  $33.88  (-0.30%)
Russell 2000  ^RUT 
$1,773.27  $2.95  (-0.17%)
Crude Oil Jul 22  F*CL.NYM 
$110.89  $0.6100  (0.55%)
   
$0.0000  $0.0000  (0.00%)