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The Evolution of Cryptocurrency Trading: Insights From an Australian Crypto Exchange

Australia was one of the early adopters of cryptocurrency after the introduction of Bitcoin in 2009.

According to a survey by Statista in Australia 2022, less than 9% of the over 2000+ respondents claimed zero cryptocurrency awareness. More than 28% of this demographic owned at least one cryptocurrency.

Consequently, crypto exchanges have evolved from mere underground forums to important crypto facilitators, with the likes of Independent Reserve entering the market as far back as 2013.

These are all pointers to the fascinating crypto journey in the country, which has been marked by rapid growth and increasing adoption. Beyond acceptance and adoption, there have been regulatory debates and the establishment of laws to guide the trading of digital currencies in Australia.

In this article, we discuss the evolutionary trend of cryptocurrency trading during different timelines, using insights from Australian crypto exchanges.

The Early Days (Pre-2017)

After Bitcoin’s 2009 launch, crypto trading in Australia had low public awareness and fewer trading platforms. There was no mainstream recognition of crypto exchange, and trading was unregulated.

Aside from the low public awareness, cryptocurrency was not embraced by the fraction of the populace that knew about it. It was not until 2013 that platforms like Independent Reserve emerged to change the game.

The following year, the Australian Digital Currency Commerce Association was launched to sensitize more people to digital currencies and advocate for more adoption.

The Boom (2017-2021)

From 2017 – 2021, many popular cryptocurrencies experienced a price surge. It did not stop there. They also experienced a surge in media attention and adoption in Australia.

Already established Australian exchanges like Independent Reserve saw a surge in users, and new platforms emerged. However, this also allowed fraudulent platforms to enter the industry.

Many investors fell victim to scams and lost their money. Their stories discouraged many enthusiasts and consequently brought their crypto journey to an abrupt end.

The government started exploring regulations to address consumer protection and potential financial risks.

By 2018, the AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre) enforced regulations to ensure that all exchange platforms were registered before they were permitted to operate legally.

This amelioration helped to boundary cool the rising situation, and the statistics began to rise again in favor of cryptocurrency.

Maturation and Regulation (2022-Present)

After Bitcoin peaked at about 99,585.66 AUD in April 2021, the prices were down by 50% by the summer of 2021. The crypto market has continued to experience very significant price swings, highlighting its inherent volatility.

Despite the volatility, many Australians still embrace crypto, with ownership rates reaching nearly 25% (Statista, Cryptocurrency in Australia).
This is a result of the increased awareness created over the years. Therefore, the rate of adoption of cryptocurrency in Australia is somewhat stable.

The government has yet to rest on its oars on modifying frameworks to classify crypto assets and regulate exchanges. Since the Australian Taxation Office can obtain income tax from capital gains made by Australian crypto exchanges, it’s a win-win for both parties.

The Future

We expect to see the rise and fall of more Australian crypto exchanges. New crypto exchanges will rise because their businesses are thriving, causing more investors to delve into the crypto market.

Some crypto exchanges will fall because successful crypto exchanges are always targeted by hackers and fraudsters, who may cause such platforms to collapse.

Existing crypto exchanges are expected to beef up their security to protect their data from malicious attacks. They are also expected to adapt to changes in the crypto industry, including consumer preferences, new cryptocurrencies, and other innovations in the field.

Blockchain technology has proven its use beyond cryptocurrency. In the future, stakeholders will fund the development of new applications for blockchain technology.

The regulatory landscape will likely continue evolving, providing more clarity and security for investors. We hope to see the modification of existing regulations and the introduction of new regulations to sustain a safer trading atmosphere for crypto investors.

Growing institutional interest in cryptocurrency could further legitimize the market in Australia. This is evident as more companies adopt cryptocurrency as a payment method for their goods and services. Some cities in Australia also have crypto ATMs.

The Australian Government’s Role in These Trends

The government quickly recognized blockchain technology and its potential to revolutionize the financial markets.

This has led to a continuous effort to ensure a safe atmosphere for cryptocurrency trading to thrive in Australia, boosting the acceptance of cryptocurrency as a legitimate asset class.

To protect citizens and investors, a regulatory framework was established, and compliance was enforced by regulating bodies like AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre) and ASIC (Australian Securities and Investments Commission).

The government has since established open collaborations with the crypto industry’s stakeholders, suggesting its support of blockchain technology. Evidently, the government plays a significant role in ensuring that the cryptocurrency market thrives in Australia beyond its adoption.


The evolution of cryptocurrency trading in Australia hasn’t been without challenges. However, the ecosystem keeps beating every odds.

Here’s a quick sum-up of all the points we discussed:

  • Australia has a vibrant and growing crypto trading scene. Mainstream adoption of crypto trading is rapidly taking over the country.
  • Financial regulations are catching up to address consumer protection and market stability. The government is a primary facilitator of the thriving crypto industry.
  • The current state of crypto exchanges in Australia is relatively stable.
  • The future of crypto trading in Australia hinges on innovation, regulation, mainstream adoption, and support from the government.

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