Russia Leads Global BTC Trading Volumes on LocalBitcoins in 2020


June 2, 2020 3:32 pm

Russia Leads Global BTC Trading Volumes on LocalBitcoins in 2020
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Russia is strengthening its leadership on major peer-to-peer exchange LocalBitcoins in the share of Bitcoin (BTC) trading volumes, amid local crypto regulation uncertainty.

According to an analysis by crypto media startup CryptoDiffer, Russia has traded the most Bitcoin on LocalBitcoins exchange for two consecutive months, April and May 2020. 

LocalBitcoins Volumes 

Per the data, Russia was liable for 19% of total BTC trading volumes on LocalBitcoins last month, leaving Venezuela and the United States following. 

LocalBitcoins’ BTC trading in Venezuela and the U.S. reportedly valued for 11% and 10%, respectively. Total Bitcoin trading volumes on LocalBitcoins amounted to 17,867 bitcoins in May 2020.

The information provided by CryptoDiffer clearly corresponds with data of major Bitcoin statistics website, Coin Dance. According to Coin Dance’s website, weekly BTC trading volumes of Russia on LocalBitcoins estimated for about 800 BTC in May 2020. Meanwhile, Venezuela and the U.S. were trading around 400 BTC per week through the same month.

LocalBitcoins increases its push into the Russian market

According to the representative of LocalBitcoins, Russia has been one of the leading markets on the platform and was also the biggest market in April and the top trading country in the first quarter of 2020 for LocalBitcoins. An internal LocalBitcoins’ report explains that Russia was responsible for 17.9% of the total trade volume on the exchange in May 2020. Finland-based LocalBitcoins has been contributing Bitcoin trading services against the Russian ruble since 2013, the representative added. And after hitting all-time highs in weekly BTC trading in 2017, the Russian market has remained an important market to date.

Russia’s Bitcoin trading leadership on LocalBitcoins comes amid the firm’s apparent push into the Russian market. On April 15, 2020, LocalBitcoins tweeted a dedicated Russian-language blog, posted with an article featuring “The first specialized Russian-language Medium article is regarding the interview between Vladislav Alimpiev, LocalBitcoins’ Community Manager and Dmitry Stepanin.”

LocalBitcoins has been also promoting its service for Russian users, that the platform is among key crypto exchanges for Russia. Tweeting“Bitcoins & LocalBitcoins are used widely by all stratum of society – regardless if you’re a plumber or a TV star”  

Trading Volumes in Last Few Years

Russia became the largest trader of Bitcoin on LocalBitcoins during a general decline of Bitcoin trading activity on the platform. Per the data from Coin Dance, weekly Bitcoin trading volumes on the exchange collapsed from around 10,000 BTC in May 2019 to about 4,500 BTC in May 2020.

Bitcoin trading volumes on LocalBitcoins dropped significantly after the platform suddenly eliminated some local cash trades in June 2019. The volumes continued to decrease as the exchange launched a new Identity verification system for tightening Anti-Money Laundering measures and suspending accounts in multiple regions.

Global BTC trading volumes on LocalBitcoins. Source: Coin Dance

The drop on LocalBitcoins’ global markets comes in line with a significant drop in its Russian market. As before-mentioned, weekly BTC trading volumes in Russia dropped roughly 60% from about 2,000 BTC in May 2019 to 800 BTC in May 2020, according to data from Coin Dance.

While Russia is the top market for LocalBitcoins so far, the country has seen some concerns in terms of crypto regulation. On May 21, Russian lawmakers suggested criminalizing crypto violations with fines up to $28,240 and imprisonment for up to seven years. Explaining the concern, the LocalBitcoins’ representative stated: “We are following the legal situation in Russia and we hope that Russian people will continue to have access to Bitcoin and its benefits in the future too.”

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