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20 Results

Private Digital Cryptoassets as Investment? Bitcoin Ownership and Use in Canada, 2016-2021

We report on the dynamics of Bitcoin awareness and ownership from 2016 to 2021, using the Bank of Canada's Bitcoin Omnibus Surveys (BTCOS). Our analysis also helps understand Bitcoin owners who adopted during the COVID-19 and how they differ from long-term owners. 
October 12, 2022

Five things we learned about Canadian Bitcoin owners in 2021

We present key findings from the 2021 Bitcoin Omnibus Survey on Canadians’ awareness and ownership of Bitcoin. Most Canadians have heard of Bitcoin, which remains primarily used as an investment. Ownership jumped in 2021, reflecting increased savings during the pandemic and greater availability of user-friendly platforms to buy Bitcoin.
Content Type(s): Publications, Financial System Hub articles JEL Code(s): C, C1, C12, E, E4, O, O5, O51

Cash, COVID-19 and the Prospects for a Canadian Digital Dollar

Staff Discussion Paper 2022-17 Walter Engert, Kim Huynh
We provide an analysis of cash trends in Canada before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also consider the potential two scenarios for issuance of a central bank digital currency in Canada: the emergence of a cashless society or the widespread use of an alternative digital currency in Canada. Finally, we discuss the Canadian experience in maintaining cash as an efficient and accessible method of payment and store of value.

Cash in the Pocket, Cash in the Cloud: Cash Holdings of Bitcoin Owners

Staff Working Paper 2022-26 Daniela Balutel, Christopher Henry, Kim Huynh, Marcel Voia
We estimate the effect that owning Bitcoin has on the amount of cash held by Canadian consumers. Our results question the view that adopting certain new technologies, such as Bitcoin, leads to a decline in cash holdings.

Bitcoin Awareness, Ownership and Use: 2016–20

In this paper, we examine trends in Canadian ownership of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from 2016 to 2020 using data from surveys conducted by the Bank of Canada.

Cash and COVID-19: What happened in 2021

Staff Discussion Paper 2022-8 Heng Chen, Walter Engert, Kim Huynh, Daneal O’Habib, Joy Wu, Julia Zhu
Using data from the Bank Note Distribution System and consumer surveys, we find that bank notes in circulation remained high through 2021. Canadians continued to rely on electronic methods of payment, but a significant share also continued using cash for payments.

Cash and COVID-19: The impact of the second wave in Canada

The COVID-19 pandemic significantly increased the demand for cash. Cash in circulation increased sharply from March through December 2020, particularly in the early months of this period. Although use of electronic methods of payment also increased significantly, cash use for payments remains high for low-value transactions and among certain demographic groups.

Overlooking the online world: Does mismeasurement of the digital economy explain the productivity slowdown?

Staff Analytical Note 2021-10 Alejandra Bellatin, Stephanie Houle
Since the mid-2000s, labour productivity has slowed down in Canada despite enormous technological advances that were expected to improve it. This note investigates whether mismeasurement of the digital economy can explain this paradox.
Content Type(s): Staff research, Staff analytical notes Topic(s): Productivity JEL Code(s): E, E0, E01, L, L8, L86, O, O3, O33, O4, O5, O51

Cash and COVID-19: The Effects of Lifting Containment Measures on Cash Demand and Use

Staff Discussion Paper 2021-3 Heng Chen, Walter Engert, Kim Huynh, Gradon Nicholls, Julia Zhu
Using Bank Note Distribution System data on the demand for cash up to September 2020, we find that demand was strong. This is true even though cash use for payments declined early in the pandemic. When mobility restrictions and lockdown measures were eased, cash use for payments increased sharply but remained less popular than electronic methods of payment.

2019 Cash Alternative Survey Results

Staff Discussion Paper 2020-8 Kim Huynh, Gradon Nicholls, Mitchell Nicholson
The role of cash in Canadians’ lives has been evolving, as innovations in digital payments have become more widely adopted over the past decade. We contribute to the Bank of Canada’s research on central bank digital currency by monitoring Canadians’ use of cash and their adoption of digital payment methods.
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