Big in Japan? You bet. The Financial Services Agency has released domestic cryptocurrency trading statistics for the country for the first time, with data gathered from 17 cryptocurrency exchanges.
And it shows that as of March 31 this year, Japan has no less than 3.5 million individuals that are trading with cryptocurrencies as actual assets.
The numbers (PDF file) reveal that crypto investors in their 20s, 30s and 40s make up a major share, accounting for 28%, 34% and 22% respectively of the total crypto trader population in Japan. Which should come as no surprise.
The figures have been announced at the first meeting of a cryptocurrency exchange study group established by the FSA in early March, with the release of data marking the latest effort by the financial watchdog in bringing greater transparency to the industry.
Which itself comes at a time when hacking incidents at exchanges are at a rise.
Including the recent hack of one of the domestic exchange Coincheck.
The FSA is of the review that the study and disclosure of the domestic trading statistics is the first step towards a more comprehensive examination over institutional issues in the cryptocurrency trading space in Japan.
By the same token, this latest report from the financial regulator also disclosed that the number of traders investing in cryptocurrency margins and futures is about 142,842 as of the end of March.
All impressive numbers, but the impressive is the fact that there is major contrast in the growth of yearly trading volume drawn to these two different types of investments.
That is because while the yearly trading volume of the actual Bitcoin cryptocurrency grew from $22 million in 2014 to $97 billion in 2017, the trading on margins, credit and futures of Bitcoin as an underlying asset has surged from only $2 million in 2014 to a remarkable $543 billion just in 2017 alone.
No wonder, the country is at the forefront of the cryptocurrency landscape.