Whereas cryptocurrency’s attain has expanded over the previous decade, its current volatility has left many Individuals questioning whether it’s a worthwhile investment. A recent YouGov poll finds that way more Individuals view it as a foul somewhat than a superb funding. Although few are involved about cryptocurrency’s potential environmental impact, many help greater regulation and imagine it is getting used for unlawful functions comparable to money laundering. By way of cryptocurrency’s acceptance into the mainstream, we discover little change in Individuals’ outlook over the previous 5 years. Whereas almost one in three imagine it is going to be at the very least considerably broadly accepted over the following decade, far fewer see it as an alternative choice to money, or imagine the U.S. ought to develop a national cryptocurrency.
Consciousness and private experiences
Most Individuals (80%) have some consciousness of cryptocurrency, although just one in 5 (21%) say they’ve heard so much about it. Males are extra probably than ladies are to say they’ve heard so much about cryptocurrency, and Individuals below 45 usually tend to say they’re very aware of it than older persons are. Three-fourths of Individuals who’ve heard about cryptocurrency say they’ve additionally heard about its recent crash.
One in 5 Individuals (21%) say they’ve owned cryptocurrency sooner or later, together with 12% who say they at present personal it and 9% who say they beforehand owned it however not do. Most individuals who’ve owned cryptocurrency say they most lately acquired it by buying it (65%), whereas 21% say they had been paid in it and 24% say they got it.
Why do Individuals buy cryptocurrency? Half of people that say they’ve bought cryptocurrency (52%) say the first motive for his or her most up-to-date buy was to make use of it as an funding, whereas 26% say they purchased it for enjoyable or out of curiosity and 18% say they purchased it to make use of for purchases.
Individuals are divided about cryptocurrency’s potential for broader societal acceptance. A roughly equal share say it’s going to turn into considerably or very broadly accepted (31%) throughout the subsequent 10 years as say it won’t be very or in any respect broadly accepted (30%). After we requested a similar question in 2017, Individuals expressed the same outlook on cryptocurrency’s future: 35% thought it could be at the very least considerably accepted and 28% didn’t assume it could.
Solely about one in 10 Individuals (11%) imagine that cryptocurrency will ultimately substitute money within the U.S. The identical share – 11% – say the nation ought to create a nationwide cryptocurrency.
A worthwhile funding?
Is cryptocurrency perceived as a superb funding? Few (13%) imagine it is a very or considerably good funding, whereas way more (41%) say it is a dangerous funding. Regardless of many crypto firms’ current troubles, individuals who at present personal cryptocurrency stay usually optimistic about it as an funding: Practically half (47%) say it’s a superb funding, whereas 20% say it’s a foul funding, and 29% say it’s neither good nor dangerous. (This excludes individuals who used to personal crypto however have offered it, and might need extra detrimental views of its funding potential.) Individuals who’ve by no means owned cryptocurrency are far much less optimistic: Solely 6% say it’s a superb funding whereas 44% say it’s a foul funding.
In current months, the federal government has cracked down on quite a lot of cryptocurrency scams, with the Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) reporting that Americans have lost more than $1 billion to them since 2021, excess of in earlier years. When requested whether or not most crypto firms are official companies or scams, about as many Individuals say that almost all are scams (20%) as say they’re largely official (16%). One in 4 (25%) imagine it’s about evenly cut up: half are official, half are scams.
Are Individuals involved about the potential environmental impacts of cryptocurrency? Not significantly. Solely 18% of Individuals imagine cryptocurrency is dangerous for the atmosphere, whereas 9% say it is good for it, and 30% say it’s neither good nor dangerous. Individuals who personal cryptocurrency usually tend to have an opinion on the topic, and people who do are almost evenly cut up between viewing its results on the atmosphere as optimistic (27%) and detrimental (24%).
One widespread concern relating to cryptocurrency is its potential to assist illegal actions, together with making unlawful purchases on the darkish net and money-laundering. When requested about this chance in our newest survey, Individuals had been divided: 18% say cryptocurrency is generally used for unlawful purchases, whereas 15% say it is largely used for authorized purchases. Others aren’t positive or are cut up, with 22% saying it’s used for authorized purchases half the time and unlawful purchases the opposite half. After we final asked a similar question in 2017, Individuals reported related opinions, although barely extra mentioned then that cryptocurrency is generally used for unlawful functions than say so right now.
By 43% to 4%, Individuals imagine cryptocurrency makes it simpler somewhat than tougher for criminals to launder cash; 13% say it makes it neither simpler nor tougher.
About one-third of Individuals (36%) imagine cryptocurrency ought to be topic to extra authorities regulation, whereas fewer say it ought to be much less regulated (8%) or say there ought to be no change in regulation (14%). Individuals who at present personal cryptocurrency are much less supportive of regulation than are Individuals total: 29% need extra regulation, 20% need much less, and 38% need no change.
Regardless of a need for higher regulation, extra Individuals imagine cryptocurrency ought to be authorized in most or all circumstances (32%) than say it ought to be unlawful in most or all circumstances (16%).
— Carl Bialik contributed to this text
This ballot was carried out on July 18 – 21, 2022, amongst 1,000 U.S. grownup residents. Explore more on the methodology and data for this poll.