People are twice as likely to trust digital coins issued by the central bank than decentralized cryptocurrencies (as in the case of Bitcoin), according to an Economist survey
Familiarity with digital currencies is always high, but confidence in decentralized cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin is extremely scarce, according to a survey of more than 3,000 users of digital payments.
The survey, by the Economist Intelligence Unit and the digital payments platform Crypto.com, found that people are more than twice as likely to trust a digital currency issued by a central bank (54%) than a decentralized cryptocurrency (26 %).
The benefits of digital currencies include improved financial tracking, increased financial inclusion and reduced costs. This has prompted the governments of China and Sweden, as well as companies – including Facebook and investment bank J. P. Morgan – to experiment with their own versions of cryptocurrencies. In the US, orders for a digital dollar are growing.
While confidence in central bank-backed digital currencies scored the highest, confidence in those issued by major financial companies came in second at 40%, while large technology companies received slightly less approval at 36%. Respondents said they would trust banks and large companies – involved in technology or finance – more than in a decentralized digital currency like Bitcoin, which is not supported by any particular organization.
“It’s not surprising,” said Danny Scott, CEO of British Bitcoin exchange CoinCorner, to Decrypt. “At just 11 years old, Bitcoin is still in its infancy, while central banks have been around for hundreds of years. Bitcoin changes the way we think about money. Moving from a controlled and “reliable” model to a completely decentralized model is quite strange and will take time “.
The concept of running out of money is already strong
The survey surveyed users of digital payments in developed countries (USA, UK, France, South Korea, Australia and Singapore) and developing countries (Brazil, Turkey, Vietnam, South Africa and the Philippines).
She found that 85% were familiar with cryptocurrencies, but problems of trust and understanding still persist.
Scott believes that this will take time to resolve. “There is a long way to go when it comes to education about decentralized currencies,” he said. However, he also questioned the logic of relying on a hypothetical concept, such as a central bank digital currency “which does not yet exist”.
The survey also revealed that the concept of running out of money is already strong, with a variety of technologies replacing physical notes and coins – money is only the third most popular payment method. 10% of respondents consider that their own country no longer has money (predominantly using digital rather than physical payment methods). And another 20% of people said they currently don’t use digital currencies, but plan to use them next year.
If decentralized cryptocurrencies can finally succeed in capturing our trust and taking the place of money, it may well depend on how banks and large companies behave.