March 27, 2024
Only 47% of Hong Kong's retail crypto investors grasp the new trading regulations.
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Survey Reveals: Majority of Hong Kong Retail Crypto Investors Unaware of New Regulations

According to a report by the Investor and Financial Education Council (IFEC) of Hong Kong released on October 11, only 47% of retail cryptocurrency investors in Hong Kong are aware of the Virtual Asset Trading Platform Regulatory Regime. This legislation, which came into effect in June, is designed to safeguard the interests of retail investors involved in digital assets in the region.

The IFEC’s survey revealed a significant increase in cryptocurrency investments among Hong Kong adults aged 18–29, with nearly 25% of them having invested in cryptocurrencies within the past year. This represents three times the demographic average and a substantial rise from 2019, when only 3% of respondents in this age group reported involvement in cryptocurrency investments.

Despite the growing interest in cryptocurrency, the majority of Hong Kong citizens indicated a preference for traditional investment avenues, with 96% prioritizing stocks, followed by mutual funds and trusts at 24%, and bonds at 18%. Approximately three-quarters of all respondents cited short-term profits and the fear of missing out as the primary reasons for investing in cryptocurrencies. The survey encompassed 1,000 respondents between the ages of 18 and 69.

In response to the survey findings, IFEC’s General Manager, Dora Li, emphasized the importance of investors understanding the characteristics of the products and the associated risks before making investment decisions. She noted the necessity of aligning their choices with their financial goals and risk tolerance.

Eric Chui, Head of the Department of Applied Social Sciences at PolyU, urged virtual asset investors to adopt a more deliberate and rational approach. He stressed the need for them to enhance their financial literacy and gather high-quality market information to avoid irrational investment behavior and biases.

Starting in June, Hong Kong allowed retail cryptocurrency trading on licensed exchanges, but the outcome has been mixed. During this period, Hong Kong experienced the unraveling of the largest Ponzi scheme in its history, the $166 million JPEX crypto exchange scandal.

Image by freepik

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