New Survey Shows Nearly Half of Americans are Unfamiliar with Cryptocurrency

A recent survey conducted by The Harris Poll has been published by the American Institute of CPAs and provides new insights into investor interest surrounding cryptocurrency. According to the poll, nearly half of Americans interested in investing are not familiar with cryptocurrency. The newly published survey conducted between April 5th and April 8th interviewed 1,014 investors over the phone, 510 of whom were men and 504 were women. All participants were over the age of 18.

How many Americans are Familiar with Cryptocurrency?

The survey shows that 48 percent of US adults are not familiar with cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum or Litecoin. Among the 42 percent of Americans familiar with crypto there were clear divisions between the perceived outlook for the future of the market. 24 percent felt cryptocurrency would grow in value, 29 predicted the market to worsen, 35 percent predicted wild fluctuations and 12 percent predicted the market would remain stable.

Millenials and Gen Xers More Bullish on Volatile Markets

48 percent of those surveyed held the belief that volatile markets offer easy opportunities for profit. Noticeable differences in perception towards the potential for profit in volatile markets sprung up based on age among those surveyed.

“Millennials (aged 20-37) and Gen Xers (aged 38-53) are much more likely than Boomers (aged 54-72) to agree about the potential profitability of this short-term buying and selling high-risk behavior (62 percent and 55 percent vs. 37 percent),” reads a report published today. “Experience in the markets appears to make a difference to more seasoned investors. Many Millennials have only experienced a bull market as adults and may not be as aware of the dangerous downturns that are a natural part of the market cycle.”

CPA chairman of the AICPA’s National CPA Financial Literacy Commission Greg Anton was alarmed to have seen these statistics and headed a warning to young investors.

“Investing is not a get-rich-quick scheme and trying to time a volatile market with hopes for huge gains is a serious financial risk,” said Anton. “Many people who enter the market looking for a quick buck find they can’t handle watching their investment lose value, which leads them to sell at a loss. For most people, seeking incremental gains over a longer time horizon is a safer, more sustainable approach.”

5 Percent of American Investment Portfolios Reserved for Cryptocurrency

Out of the 35 percent of Americans either investing or planning to invest in 2019, an average of 5 percent of investment portfolios are estimated to be reserved for cryptocurrency. Investments in real estate, 401(k), IRAs, mutual funds and individual stocks make up the bulk of surveyed investor portfolios, ranging between 16-19 percent. CDs, government bonds and ETFs make up 11, 10 and 8 percent of portfolios respectively.

Contrasts in July Gallup Poll

A recent Gallup poll conducted in July surveyed 1,921 US investors came to both similar and contrasting conclusions. The Gallup survey found that 48 percent 18-49-year-olds were aware of Bitcoin, with 22 percent and 16 percent of 50-64-year-olds and seniors respectively knowing about Bitcoin. Interestingly, 75 percent of investors stated their belief that Bitcoin was a very risky investment. A total of 29 percent of those surveyed claimed to be aware of cryptocurrency.


“Before Americans invest their hard-earned money, it is important they take control of their financial future and do some research. While no one can say with certainty whether an investment will go up in value, taking the time to evaluate past performance can give some insight into future possibility,” concluded Greg Anton upon reviewing the final report.

“A well-researched and properly diversified portfolio that matches an investors risk tolerance will give confidence to stay focused on long-term strategy and protect from the temptation to sell during short-term price swings.”

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