The new Japanese cryptocurrency self-regulatory organization (SRO) has just released some data about the size of the Japanese cryptocurrency market, and the numbers are staggering. According to the Japanese Cryptocurrency Business Association, there are 3.5 million active cryptocurrency investors and traders in Japan. While that may not sound like a huge number, it is enough to turn Japan into the world’s largest cryptocurrency market.
With a population of 127 million people, 3.5 million investors equates to about 2.8% of the population, about what previous Japanese surveys had indicated with regard to the number of Japanese who had purchased cryptocurrencies. But due to Japan’s rapidly aging population, a very large portion of the population, nearly 30%, is now above the age of 65. Around 60% of the population is between the ages of 15 and 64, what one would consider including the prime investing years.
In fact, the survey also indicated that about 85% of Japanese cryptocurrency investors were in their 20s, 30s, or 40s. That means that a much higher percentage of Japanese of prime investment age are actively involved in cryptocurrency trading.
Japan had once been a key hub for cryptocurrency trading in the early days of Bitcoin, with the Mt. Gox exchange at one point handling 70% of all worldwide Bitcoin transactions. But the exchange’s failure, coupled with developments in China, led the Chinese market to overtake Japan as the world’s largest.
Now that the Chinese government has cracked down on cryptocurrency trading, and the Japanese government has welcomed it, Japan has once again taken the crown as the world’s largest cryptocurrency market. The total sum of all cryptocurrency transactions in the country has risen from $22 million in 2014 to $97 billion in 2017, while trades involving margins, credit, and futures went from $2 million to $543 billion in the same period.
Aside from just providing details of the size of the Japanese market, the recent release also highlights the effectiveness and importance of an SRO. Aside from just compiling data on cryptocurrency trading, SROs can also work to help implement industry safeguards to protect Bitcoin investors and keep unsavory actors out of the market. Creating an SRO for the US Bitcoin market could be incredibly beneficial.