South America confirms its position as the fastest growing area for bitcoin diffusion, particularly in Venezuela, where last week a new bitcoin trading record was reached on the LocalBitcoins platform.
In the last three weeks, there was one record after another, with respectively 1,190, 1,296 and even 1,636 BTC traded in one week, with a growth of 37% in less than a month.
Venezuela is the second country in the world for bitcoin trading volumes on LocalBitcoins, behind Russia and followed by the US.
Venezuela is not the only country that has achieved similar records: also in Peru and Argentina, trading records have been reached on LocalBitcoins during the last week, although in Peru the record concerns the amount of BTC traded (213), while in Argentina it concerns the volume in pesos (9,446,227).
Therefore, we can say that in South America the bitcoin trading volume is in clear growth, probably also thanks to the rather low prices of this historical moment.
Growth also occurred in Russia and the US. Keeping LocalBitcoins as a reference, we discover that 3,887 BTCs were traded in Russia in the last week, with an increase of 15% compared to the previous week, while in the US there have been more than 1,500 BTCs traded for two weeks.
The latter data seem to confirm that it is plausible that the reason for the increase in trading volumes may be due to the particularly low purchase prices of BTCs during this period, but it is possible that there may also be other reasons, especially in Latin America.
For example, in Venezuela, where the local currency is affected by an unstoppable hyperinflationary spiral that is literally destroying its value, there is a real need to use other forms of money, as confirmed by some users on Reddit.
In addition, the Petro, the State cryptocurrency created by the Venezuelan government to solve the problem, is not purchasable with the local currency, nor in dollars, but to date, it is purchasable only in bitcoin or litecoin.
This could also induce Venezuelans to convert bolivars into bitcoin and then perhaps use BTCs to buy Petro.
However, there are no precise statistics of how many Petros have actually been sold, and how much they are really circulating in the markets since the blockchain is not public and it is therefore not possible to verify any data related to transactions.
Moreover, there is still no working wallet in order to receive, store and send Petro, so it is unlikely that this state cryptocurrency can already be used as a means of payment.
There is only the PetroApp, but it is the website of the registry and requires an access code that prevents those who do not own Petro to verify its operation.