13% of Unbanked Americans Haved Used Cryptocurrency For Payments And Transfers, FED Survey Finds

Cryptocurrencies have become a relevant topic for the FED. Ths is the first time they are included in one of its surveys to better understand adult consumers’ experiences with emerging payment.

On May 23, the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) released a survey titled “Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2021,” which included several topics related to how involved Americans were with cryptocurrencies.

The survey was conducted among 11,000 adult Americans between October and November 2021 to learn about their economic situation and what type of investments they engaged in. The FED found that a large portion of adults with high incomes (greater than $100,000) held investments in cryptocurrencies.

“Those who held cryptocurrency purely for investment purposes were disproportionately high-income.”

In addition, the research concluded that there was an increase, compared to last year, of people using cryptocurrencies as a form of investment, even surpassing those who used them for transactions or purchases. This translates into greater confidence on the part of adult investors.

What are cryptocurrencies used for in the U.S.?

Twelve percent of the adults surveyed said they had purchased cryptocurrencies only for investment purposes. In comparison, 2 percent said they used them to buy products or send money to family or friends.

Only 1% of respondents said they used their cryptocurrencies to send money to family or friends outside of the country. This shows that very few people in the United States still prefer traditional remittance services or even the legacy banking framework for international money transfers.

Source: US Federal Reserve

13% of unbanked adults use crypto as a means of payment

According to the survey results, 99% of people who invest in cryptocurrencies without using them for transactions also have a bank account. In contrast, 13% of the unbanked are more likely to use crypto as a means of payment as opposed to pure investment or speculation.

“99 percent of those investing in cryptocurrency, but not using it for transactions, had a bank account, and 89 percent of non retired cryptocurrency investors had at least some retirement savings.”

In addition, the FED indicated that 27% of the unbanked who do not have credit cards use cryptocurrencies for transactions, while 7% of those unbanked and with no credit card use crypto as an investment.

In general, the report showed that the adoption of cryptocurrencies in the U.S. is growing and that more people wish to invest in cryptocurrencies before actually using them as a means of payment or a substitute for money. This might not come as a surprise, considering that there is an increasing number of politicians pushing for ways to promote the use of cryptocurrencies and give a push to the industry.

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