Many are looking at recent Bitcoin price increases and are looking for a cause-and-effect. Scams by Russians in China, corporate capital investment at an all time high, and Chinese capital controls are commonly mentioned triggers. One highly probable factor is the simple increase in purchase volume worldwide, according to the Bitcoin sales tracking website Coin.dance.
Coin.dance charts the weekly sales of popular Bitcoin exchange LocalBitcoins.com, which specializes in face-to-face Bitcoin sales, as well as online Bitcoin purchases. Their data shows Bitcoin sales are up tremendously in 2015, both worldwide and in most major countries, over the previous two years. For example, global Bitcoin sales over this time last year have more than doubled, as indicated by the chart below.
Sales have expanded from about 15,000 BTC sales a week in October of 2014 to over 35,000 BTC last month. The website breaks down LocalBitcoins.com sales in every major country, and it shows very interesting growth patterns that vary from region to region. As you might expect, China is an area of explosive growth for Bitcoin sales on the site, rising hundreds of percent from one year ago until now. The only problem is a Chinese Yuan is not worth very much in relation to U.S. Dollars (A Chinese Yuan is worth about $0.16 USD)
An interesting country, but potentially very important to Bitcoin’s future, is India. The second largest country in the world based on population, India is normally trading 2-3 million Indian Rupees per week in Bitcoin. Oddly, Indian Rupee trade volume spiked to over 11 million rupees for just one week, the week of 10/31/15, coinciding with the global Bitcoin price spike. The only problem is 11 million Indian Rupees are worth less than $200k USD (One Rupee is worth about $0.015 USD, or one-tenth of the Chinese Yuan mentioned above). Countries like South Africa, Russia and Venezuela also have shown impressive investment in recent weeks.
So a rash of recent purchase volume may indeed be an underlying cause, but the news is not all peaches and cream. Coin.dance shows that markets like the continent of Europe show no real growth year-to-year concerning Bitcoin purchases on the site in Euros. With many currency problems plaguing European countries, this may be surprising to some. Canada also shows little or no gains.
The United States has shown steady growth, moving an all-time high of about $7 million through this one exchange for the week of last two weeks, a jump of around 20% over earlier in October. Given the strength of the U.S. Dollar currently, compared to other fiat currencies, if other exchanges are showing similar upward mobility in volume, this may account for some market shifts.
Again, this is just one exchange out of several, so this should be viewed as an indicator, but not the definitive reason for any market changes. This site is extensive, marking the movement of over 35 national markets, plus the global chart above. The one overriding theme you get from Coin.dance’s information is that 2015 is clearly a year of growth in Bitcoin interest, as far as consumer investment is concerned. Many fiat currencies are very weak, and many countries are just getting started with Bitcoin, but the trend is very positive worldwide. That can’t be ignored in the current price of Bitcoin, or by the mainstream, any longer.
What do you think caused the spike in Bitcoin price recently? Share above and comment below!
Images courtesy of Coin.dance, Bit-Post.com