While some investors see the forthcoming Facebook (FB) cryptocurrency as a sign of mainstream adoption for digital currencies, the overwhelming majority of Americans are not enthused. Fully 85% are not interested in Facebook Libra, a new IBD/TIPP Poll has found. Meanwhile, a majority said they are unlikely to own any cryptocurrency, including Bitcoin.
Bitcoin, other cryptocurrencies and related stocks and securities such as Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) fell Monday, continuing a recent retreat after beginning to show signs of another cryptocurrency climax run.
Bitcoin retreated 7% to $10,294 according to CoinDesk, after briefly undercutting $10,000. Last week, Bitcoin rose well above $13,000, clearing that level for the first time since December 2017. Among other digital currencies, Ethereum was off 13% while Bitcoin Cash and Ripple (also known as XRP) lost about 2%.
Among Bitcoin- and blockchain-related stocks, Riot Blockchain (RIOT) fell 12% on the stock market today. Overstock.com (OSTK) was down 3.5% and Grayscale Bitcoin Trust was off 14%.
Facebook stock tested an early buy point Monday, but gains faded to 0.3%. The social network has rallied in recent weeks in part on optimism about its digital currency plans.
This Demographic Snubs Facebook
The news for Facebook Libra was worst in the demographic that would seem most likely to use the new technology. Among those age 18-24, 94% said they are not interested in the forthcoming digital coin. Among those age 25-44, 82% are not interested. For 45-64s, 91% said they are not keen on Libra.
Intriguingly, Americans age 65 and older showed the least resistance. But seniors were hardly enthusiastic: 79% aren't interested in Facebook Libra.
There was almost no difference between the sexes in level of interest, with 13% of men and 14% of women intrigued by the idea.
Bitcoin Not For The Masses
Bitcoin remains the dominant cryptocurrency. But it's not gaining mainstream acceptance yet.
In total 56% of people said they do not believe it is likely they will buy or use cryptocurrencies in the next 10 years.
Notably, 57% of self-described investors don't expect to buy or use cryptocurrencies in the next 10 years. That compares to 53% of noninvestors.
Some of the biggest names in investing have shown skepticism toward cryptocurrencies. Warren Buffett has sworn he will never invest in Bitcoin, and that it is "almost with certainty" that cryptocurrencies will come to a bad ending. Vanguard's Global Chief Economist Joe Davis has previously said there is a "decent probability" Bitcoin's price will go to zero.
And former International Monetary Fund chief economist Kenneth Rogoff said that, outside money laundering, Bitcoin's "uses as a transaction vehicle are very small." He said the Bitcoin, the most popular digital currency, is more likely end up worth $100 than $100,000.
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