Bitcoin Adopters Could Soon Overtake Stock Traders in Indonesia

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Indonesia's largest exchange platform for cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin could soon outrank the national stock market by sheer numbers of participants.

A single cryptocurrency market in Indonesia could soon have more registered users than the country old stock exchange. If the value of bitcoin and the broader cryptocurrency marketplace is in a rut, Indonesians have missed the memo.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Indonesia Digital Asset Exchange (INDODAX) chief executive Oscar Darmawan claims the platform is on track to have 1.5 million KYC-registered users by the end of their 2018. With thousands of new users registering daily, the crypto exchange currently sees 1.14 million users after opening its doors in 2014.

By comparison, the Indonesia Stock Exchange, the country's national stock exchange, has a total of 1.18 million registered participants that trade stocks, futures, exchange-traded funds and choices of listed companies worth a combined $520 billion, Bloomberg adds. The current combined market cap of cryptocurrencies stands at $355 billion, down from an all-time high of nearly $830 billion in early January this year.

Bali-based INDODAX, previously Bitcoin.co.id before a rebrand, provides fiat-to-bitcoin purchases to domestic users alongside crypto-to-crypto trading wherein bitcoin could be redeemed for a handful of other supported coins such as Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin, DASH, Stellar and much more. The executive further disclosed that the exchange is now facilitating an average of 100 billion rupiah ($7.3 million) in trading volume every day, a figure he hopes to double by the end of the year.

He added:

«We are seeing nearly 3,000 new members signing up everyday. Most people are trading in bitcoins though transactions in ethereal has increased significantly of late.»

The insights are particularly notable in underlining a continuing trend of heightening retail investors' interest in cryptocurrencies. Indonesia, in particular, harbors a hostile environment toward cryptocurrencies due to authorities repeated crackdowns.

While the central bank, Bank Indonesia, has not banned cryptocurrency exchanges in the nation, the institution's governor has threatened legal action against bitcoin adopters using the cryptocurrency for obligations. Following the central bank has outlawed cryptocurrencies as legal tender, there have been reports of government swooping in on establishments accepting the cryptocurrency in Bali.

Still, Indonesians' appetite for cryptocurrency keeps growing, despite the central bank urging 'all parties' in the country to refrain from selling buying or trading cryptocurrencies at a recent January warning.