More than a third of U.S. retail investors would consider an investment in Bitcoin, representing a potential market of more than 21 million investors, according to a new study based on an online survey of 1,100 U.S. investors commissioned by Grayscale Investments, a digital currency asset manager. The majority of those interested in Bitcoin, however, are not interested in working with a financial advisor.
But retail investors interested in Bitcoin aren’t a bunch of 20-somethings new to investing. The study found that “Bitcoin-interested investors” have an average age of 42, 70% are parents, and there is a “slightly increased appetite for a Bitcoin investment product among minorities” compared with the survey's control group. Men tend to be more interested in Bitcoin than women, but 93% of women would be open to investing in Bitcoin if there was more education available about the asset. If recommended by a financial advisor, 82% of women would be more likely to invest in Bitcoin, compared with 74% of men.
“It’s clear that Bitcoin is being considered alongside more traditional investments,” said Michael Sonnenshein, managing director at Grayscale Investments. “While we have had, and continue to hold, a strong conviction in the investment opportunities in digital currencies, it’s great validation to see that the appetite extends far beyond the crypto community.”
Of note, many of the same investors interested in Bitcoin are also interested in gold. Compared with 55% of all investors, 69% of Bitcoin-interested investors also view gold as a good investment. Of those investors interested in Bitcoin, 65% say they would “definitely or probably would invest in gold,” compared with just 41% of the control group.
Trusted third parties, like advisors, can also have an impact on how investors approach digital assets. Seventy-eight percent of investors surveyed say that working with an advisor would make them more comfortable with investing in Bitcoin. While investors may not be inclined to work with advisors, the survey’s authors recognized the potential for advisors to provide guidance. Concerns with volatility in Bitcoin, for example, can be addressed by financial advisors, who “can reassure their clients by offering the right allocation and encouraging holding over the long term,” according to one of the survey's conclusions.