Interest in Bitcoin Surges in Australia Following Spot BTC ETF Approval in the US: Study

Following the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) approval of the first eleven spot Bitcoin Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) in the United States last month, Australian retail interest in Bitcoin has experienced a surge.

The development has grabbed Australian investors’ attention, with 34% acknowledging awareness of the news. This has increased confidence in Bitcoin, with 25% of locals holding a more positive view following the ETF approval.

Increased Ownership and Positive Sentiment

According to recent data, general awareness of cryptocurrency among Australians has soared to an all-time high of 95%, up from 92% in 2022. Over the past five years, it has steadily grown by 5%. Bitcoin continues to reign supreme as the most recognized digital asset, with 93% of respondents familiar with it.

Older generations have shown a shift in sentiment towards Bitcoin, with twice as many respondents aged 55 and older expressing a “more favorable perception” of the cryptocurrency compared to those with an unchanged but positive view.

The study states that 19% of respondents expressed a willingness to invest in a spot Bitcoin ETF if it were available on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). Additionally, 34% of respondents with self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs) expressed interest in investing in Bitcoin, either through an ETF or a cryptocurrency exchange.

Demographic differences influence investment preferences. While 55% of Australians opt for crypto exchanges, 45% prefer ETFs due to their convenience. Notably, younger Australians lean towards direct ownership via exchanges, while older generations favor ETFs.

As anticipation builds for the upcoming Bitcoin halving in April 2024, which historically has been a catalyst for bullish market sentiment, Australian crypto investors are doubling down on BTC, with 41.4% planning to increase their exposure to the digital asset over the next year.

Challenges Persist Despite Growing Interest

While there was an increase in ownership and a positive shift in sentiment, the overall outlook is not entirely optimistic. The report highlighted persistent issues such as price fluctuations, inadequate consumer safeguards, and widespread confusion that deter potential investors from entering the cryptocurrency market.

Among respondents who refrain from investing in crypto, 18% expressed a desire to do so but ultimately refrained due to economic uncertainty. Similarly, 18% of existing crypto investors disclosed contemplating divesting from their holdings to navigate the challenges posed by rising living expenses and climbing interest rates.

Against the backdrop of a challenging economic landscape, Bitcoin defied expectations in 2023, rallying by 156%. This performance, fueled by anticipation of the halving and ETF approvals, shows a renewed sense of optimism surrounding the digital asset.

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