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One thing that is clear, however, is that cryptocurrencies are a lot more accessible than they once were, even more so with FinTech platforms such as upnup that make cryptocurrency accessible to anyone who swipes a bank card to make a purchase. With that, we could see a generational shift that results in Boomers and Gen Xers embracing cryptocurrencies in much larger numbers. 

Digging into investment patterns 

Before trying to establish exactly what that might look like, it’s worth taking a deeper dive into existing investment patterns. 

It does, however, run counter to some of the narratives around younger people investing in cryptocurrencies. With traditional investment vehicles failing to provide the same returns to younger people as they previously did to older investors, the theory goes, they’ve been far more willing to pursue alternative investments. The amounts spent by Gen X investors show that they clearly have an appetite for risk (and reward) that matches and even exceeds those of younger investors. 

An easier buy 

There are a number of reasons for this increased crypto investment activity among older people. One factor may be that, over the years, cryptocurrencies have simply gained more mainstream acceptance. As a result, they’ve become an acceptable part of any properly diversified portfolio. 

That sense of acceptability has only been reinforced as regulators have come to grips with cryptocurrencies. While early crypto-utopians hoped that it would be forever unregulated, mass adoption was never likely if that were the case. Most people want to know that they have some form of protection before they leap into an investment. 

This improved accessibility is one of the reasons we were able to launch upnup. It, in turn, is making it even easier for people to buy cryptocurrency – either by “rounding up” their spending on things like groceries and fuel or by transferring a set amount from their bank accounts every month. It’s an approach that requires no more technical know-how than any other app and one which, we hope, will make cryptocurrency ownership and investment far more widespread across all sectors of South African society. 

The mainstreaming of crypto 

It may take some time (if it happens at all) before rates of cryptocurrency ownership among Gen Xers and Boomers catch up to Gen Zs and Millennials. What should be clear, however, is that things are changing rapidly and that ownership of cryptocurrencies is becoming more mainstream across all age groups. And that’s something that anyone who truly believes in the transformative power of cryptocurrencies should welcome.

By Tony Mallam, Managing Director, upnup.

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