Since the introduction of Bitcoin in 2009, cryptocurrencies have risen in popularity and adoption around the globe and Canada is no exception. At the time of writing, crypto currencies are not legal tender in Canada. However, it is not illegal to use crypto in Canada.

More and more people, especially from the younger generations, are trading in crypto. Some companies in Canada and globally now accept cryptocurrencies as payment for goods and services, and crypto ATMs are appearing in Canadian cities.

In this article, you will find cryptocurrency statistics for Canada, including global comparisons. We have included information about which cryptocurrencies are most popular in Canada, how many Canadians own cryptocurrencies, and what small and medium-sized businesses should consider before accepting payments in cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrency Statistics for Canadians

  • It is legal for anyone to buy and sell crypto in Canada, and any profits from crypto trading are taxable.
  • Millennials are the largest group of crypto owners in Canada.
  • 60% of Canadians aged 56 or over say they haven’t used crypto and have no interest in doing so.
  • Only 5% of senior citizens see crypto as something they would try investing in, while 39% of the younger generations see it as a worthwhile investment.
  • In Canada, men are 2.6 times as likely to own crypto as women.
  • 58% of crypto users say they do it for profit, while other reasons include finding an alternative to traditional banking, and the currency not being tied to any institutions or authorities.
  • Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency in Canada, with 34% of crypto owners choosing Bitcoin.
  • While Vancouver has the most businesses that accept crypto as payment, Toronto has the most cryptocurrency ATMs.
  • 62% of Canadians say they would be interested in getting paid in a cryptocurrency in the future.
  • 31% of crypto users in Canada have been using cryptocurrencies for less than a year.
  • 31% of Canadians have concerns about the security and privacy of exchange platforms and cryptocurrency technology.

What are cryptocurrencies?

The Canadian government defines cryptocurrencies as a type of “digital currency created using computer algorithms”. They are based on decentralized systems that record transactions and they are not backed by the government.

The systems are formed of person-to-person networks whose computers make up the network. Because of this, cryptocurrencies are often considered inflation-proofed.

Legality

As mentioned above, crypto is not a legal tender in Canada. However, anyone can legally purchase and trade in crypto. Individual companies can also choose to accept crypto payments, but they won’t be able to use crypto to pay for their taxes and neither can individuals.

Anyone buying or selling crypto must report losses and gains when filing taxes, since crypto is taxed just like any other investment.

Despite not having a status of legal tender, digital currencies can be used to pay for goods and services online if the business has decided to accept direct payments made in cryptocurrencies.

Tax regulations for crypto in Canada

Here are some key points relating to how crypto is taxed in Canada. However, anyone investing crypto should check all the tax regulations related to crypto trading for themselves in detail.

Any business income from crypto trading is fully taxable. For example, if you invested $5,000 and made $2,500, you pay tax on the $2,500. Tax rates go up with income and most people dealing with crypto in Canada are subject to business tax law if they are working with crypto regularly and continuously.

In most provinces, the maximum rates for businesses earning less than half a million dollars per year vary from 12 to 15%. According to tax regulations, it is more profitable to define crypto actions as a business in Canada, as it will be easier to get tax abatements and reductions.

User statistics in Canada

In 2019, the use of crypto among older adults (aged 35-54) in Canada grew by 1.7%. This shows that older generations are catching up, despite the younger adults and adolescents having been quicker to accept and use cryptocurrencies. Millennials are the largest group of crypto owners in Canada, with 31.68% of millennials owning crypto.

54% of crypto owners in Canada are aged between 18 and 34, while those over 55 only make up 14% of Canadian crypto owners. 39% of younger Canadians aged 18 to 34 see crypto as a profitable investment and worth a risk. In comparison, only 5% of senior citizens see crypto currencies as an investment venture they would pursue.

Canadians aged 56 or over are the most likely to say they haven’t used and have no interest in trying cryptocurrency at 60% of the respondents. The percentages for other age groups are 38% of 36 to 55-year-olds, 21% of 23 to 35-year-olds, and 23% of 18 to 22-year-olds reporting they have no interest in crypto.

Men are 2.6 times more likely to buy cryptocurrency in Canada than women. 19.45% of men and 14.1% of women in Canada report having bought or currently owning crypto. Men make up 72% of crypto owners in Canada, women only 28%.

The global average is 64% men and 36% of women, so Canada’s gap between men and women is wider than the average. Norway has the widest gap, with 74% of the owners being men, while Colombia has the smallest gap between the sexes with 56% of owners being men and 44% women.

What motivates cryptocurrency buyers?

Most people, at 58%, get into crypto to make a profit. However, almost half (48%) of crypto owners are also motivated by being part of something innovative and alternative. 44% of crypto owners say they like digital currencies because their value is not decided by an institution or an authority.

29% of crypto users like the privacy as you are not required to give personal details when buying or selling crypto. 26% of crypto users were also motivated by having an alternative to regular banking systems.

82% of crypto investors are using online exchange platforms for trading. The technology on these platforms allows users to interact without revealing their identities. However, this feature also makes crypto transactions vulnerable to illegal activity. 38% of crypto users are also using traditional trading platforms, which are stock markets with crypto options. 15% also use Bitcoin ATMs.

Adoption of cryptocurrencies in Canada

According to a Crypto Adoption August 2022 report by Finder, Canada ranks 20th out of 26 countries for crypto adoption. The survey included 217,947 people in 26 selected countries with 8,014 residents taking part in Canada from April 2022.

Canada’s crypto ownership rate of 10% is lower than the global average, which is 15%. Out of the 26 countries included in the survey, India has the highest crypto adoption rate at 29% and Germany the lowest with 6%.

  • In August 2022, about 34% of crypto owners in Canada said they own Bitcoin according to Finder. This figure is below the global average of 37%. Australia has the highest Bitcoin ownership with 60% and out of the countries surveyed, Mexico has the lowest Bitcoin adoption at 21%.
  • Around 22% of Canadian crypto owners own Ethereum compared to the global average of 23%. Australians are once again the most likely to have Ethereum with 44% and Venezuela has the lowest Ethereum ownership at 13%.
  • The Dogecoin ownership is above the global average with 23% of Canadians owning Dogecoins compared to the global average of 19%. People from Ireland are the most likely to own Dogecoin at 26% while only 9% of crypto coin owners from Venezuela have opted for Dogecoin.
  • The Canadian ownership of Cardano is above the global average at 20% compared to 18%. Cardano ownership is highest in Hong Kong at 23% and lowest in Venezuela with just 9% of crypto owners reporting they have Cardano in their e-wallets.

Vancouver is the most crypto-friendly city in Canada

With just over a hundred businesses accepting crypto in Vancouver at the end of  2021, it is the most crypto-friendly city in the country. It is followed by Ottawa, where there were 32 companies accepting crypto, and Edmonton with 23 companies.

Bitcoin ATMs

There are 1042 Bitcoin ATMs in Canada and 370 of those are in Toronto according to Statista. Vancouver has 134 Bitcoin ATMs, Montreal 129, and Calgary 109. The availability of Bitcoin ATMs means cashing out crypto is easier in Canada than in most other countries in the world except the United States.

In the United States, there are ten times more crypto ATMs than there are in Canada. However, the States also has almost ten times as many people as Canada. So, the number of Bitcoin ATMs per person is almost the same in both countries.

Canada’s wealthiest crypto owner

The person who is said to own the most crypto in Canada is Joseph Lubin, one of the Canadian founders of Ethereum. Some estimates say he has around 5 billion USD, others a more conservative $1 billion USD worth of crypto. Lubin is also behind ConcenSys, a blockchain software technology company.

What a wider adoption of cryptocurrencies might mean to small and medium-sized businesses?

If a company is considering accepting crypto, then they need to adopt a payment processing service that accepts the cryptocurrencies their customers use most often. As mentioned above, in Canada, Bitcoin and Ethereum are the most popular cryptocurrencies.

When considering the acceptance of cryptocurrency, companies should be aware that, while they have gained more popularity since Bitcoin was introduced in 2009, the use of crypto is still fairly new in the mainstream. Furthermore, most crypto users (31%) have only been using cryptocurrency between six months and a year.

Companies should also be aware that cryptocurrencies are not government regulated. Their value is derived from supply, demand, and speculation, and their overall worth is unpredictable.

Canadians would be open to being paid in crypto in the future

Overall, 62% of Canadians would be interested in being paid in a cryptocurrency in the next five years. 18% said they felt at least slightly interested, 28% were moderately interested and 15% were significantly interested.

The main hesitation in accepting crypto payments was the lack of understanding of how they work at 64%. Another reason why Canadians would be hesitant to accept crypto salaries is the fear that the cryptocurrencies could suddenly disappear at 44%, for example, if a government made them illegal. 40% of the survey respondents also mentioned the risk of fluctuation and a lack of certainty in cryptocurrencies.

31% of Canadians also have concerns about the security and privacy of exchange platforms and cryptocurrency technology. Finally, 19% of people who have not used cryptocurrencies said they were held back because the companies they buy services and products from do not accept crypto payments.

Final considerations

While more Canadians are open to cryptocurrencies, it is unlikely we will see Bank of Canada cryptocurrency anytime soon. The pros and cons of crypto are likely to change as new technologies are developed and the society as a whole adapts more to digital currencies. Consumers and businesses alike need to remember the risks, such as fluctuation, associated with cryptocurrencies.

Statistics suggest that more Canadians will invest in cryptocurrencies in the future, especially in Bitcoin, which is the most popular cryptocurrency in Canada. As a result, there may be a more comprehensive government initiative to regulate blockchain technology and even to develop its own cryptocurrency exclusively for Canadian use.

Businesses considering accepting payments in cryptocurrencies should keep an eye on crypto trends and conduct thorough research on the benefits and risks of using digital currencies. They should also do their homework on technological implementation, security tools needed, and regulatory compliance.

Frequently Asked Questions

Trading cryptocurrencies is legal in Canada. At the present, iit is not a legal tender. However, there are some Canadian companies that accept payments in cryptocurrencies.

The first cryptocurrency was Bitcoin and it was introduced in 2009.

The younger Canadians are mostly to use and own crypto with Millennials leading the pack. Canadian men are 2.6 times more likely to own crypto compared to Canadian women.

The main reason for using crypto is trading for profit, with 58% of users citing this as their main reason. Other reasons include finding an alternative to traditional banking, and the currency not being tied to any institutions or authorities.

The most popular cryptocurrency in Canada is Bitcoin, with 34% of crypto owners choosing it. 

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