LocalBitcoin, the peer to peer cryptocurrency exchange, has been in the news multiple times recently due to its regulatory involvement and region-specific rollbacks. The latest addition to LocalBitcoin’s growing repertoire of data was contributed to by Mati Greenspan, eToro’s Senior Market Analyst who spotted the increase in LocalBitcoin’s global volumes. His tweet read,
“Global volumes @LocalBitcoins
If you ignore the 2017 crypto summer bubble, the direction of the trend is quite clear.”
The chart from Coin Dance shows a clear uptrend in volume, even when disregarding the anomaly of 2017. LocalBitcoin’s rise can be attributed to its growing popularity in South American countries such as Venezuela. In the month of January alone, the Nicolas Maduro-led country recorded a trading volume of 6,347 BTC, followed by a volume of 10,315 BTC in February. LocalBitcoin use by Venezuela stood out because of the dire economic conditions in the country right now, which has caused the native Bolivar to dip and inflation reach an all-time high.
LocalBitcoin’s growing popularity comes in the wake of regulatory pressures from various countries. The Finland-based exchange first came under the scanner when the country’s Financial Supervisory Authority [FSA] decided that LocalBitcoin will see several additions to its customer verification process. This was followed by the latest cancellation of services by LocalBitcoin in Iran, with officials close to the company claiming that regulations were the main reason for the rollback. One of the company’s representative had stated,
“[….] Well, obviously right now, there are quite many regulations coming […] even though we’re a company acting under Finnish law, we have users from all over the world and sometimes for some regulatory reasons we might stop servicing in certain countries […]”
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