Argentina leads Latin America in stablecoin adoption amid economic crisis

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13th February 2024 – (Buenos Aires) In the midst of a severe economic crisis and a plummeting peso, Argentina has emerged as the frontrunner in Latin America for purchases and holdings of stablecoins, according to a report by Mexican-founded crypto exchange Bitso. This trend comes as the nation recently elected self-described “anarcho-capitalist” Javier Milei as its president.

Bitso’s report reveals that 60% of Argentine crypto purchases on their platform were allocated to dollar-based stablecoins such as USDT (Tether) and USDC (USD Coin), while only 13% of purchases were made in Bitcoin. In comparison, stablecoin purchases in Colombia, Brazil, and Mexico accounted for 31% to 40% of total crypto buys.

Bitso attributes this high adoption of stablecoins in Argentina to the country’s current “political and economic context, which has promoted the acquisition of stablecoins as an alternative to inflation and devaluation.” With Argentina grappling with long-standing economic troubles, including an annual inflation rate of 211.4% in 2023, citizens are turning to stablecoins as a means of safeguarding their wealth.

Argentina, the second-largest country in Latin America by population and the third-largest economy, has faced ongoing economic challenges. A 2023 report by Chainalysis ranked Argentina second in Latin America for crypto adoption and 15th globally.

While the new president of Argentina falls short of fully endorsing Bitcoin, he has expressed some positive sentiments towards the cryptocurrency. He referred to Bitcoin as “the return of money to its original creator, the private sector.” Additionally, President Milei has voiced strong criticisms of central banking, describing it as “a scam.”

Bitso, with its presence across Latin America, boasts over 8 million users on its platform. The exchange’s report sheds light on the growing popularity of stablecoins in the region, particularly in Argentina, as individuals seek stability amidst economic turbulence.