Who buys Bitcoin? The Cultural Determinants of Bitcoin Usage

40 Pages Posted: 2 Mar 2021

See all articles by Sean Foley

Sean Foley

Macquarie University

Bart Frijns

Open University of the Netherlands - School of Management

Alexandre Garel

Audencia Business School

Tai-Yong Roh

Liaoning University

Date Written: January 9, 2021

Abstract

We examine the relationship between national culture and a country’s Bitcoin usage. Given that Bitcoin is a high-risk currency/investment that is frequently used for illegal purposes and whose market is relatively opaque, we focus on the cultural dimension of individualism, which has been related to risk-taking behavior and overconfidence. Using unique data that includes the originating country for Bitcoin transactions, we examine the relationship between individualism and a country’s Bitcoin usage for a sample of 80 countries between 2009-2018. We find a significant and positive relationship between a country’s individualism and its use of Bitcoin consistent with cultural values affecting the demand for such high-risk currency/investments.

Keywords: Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, National Culture, Individualism

JEL Classification: G10, G15

Suggested Citation

Foley, Sean and Frijns, Bart and Garel, Alexandre and Roh, Tai-Yong, Who buys Bitcoin? The Cultural Determinants of Bitcoin Usage (January 9, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3762923 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3762923

Sean Foley

Macquarie University ( email )

North Ryde
Sydney, New South Wales 2109
Australia
0417702600 (Phone)

Bart Frijns (Contact Author)

Open University of the Netherlands - School of Management ( email )

Valkenburgerweg 177
Heerlen, NL-6401DL
Netherlands

Alexandre Garel

Audencia Business School ( email )

8 Road Joneliere
BP 31222
Nantes Cedex 3, 44312
France

Tai-Yong Roh

Liaoning University ( email )

Shenyang, Liaoning
China

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