According to research from the World Gold Council, cryptos are now the fifth most popular kind of investment in Russia. The top four are savings accounts, foreign currencies, real estate, and life insurance, in that order. The research is based on responses from 2,023 investors, all of whom made at least one investment in the last 12 months. According to the responses, cryptos are bought more frequently by younger people, and are actually more popular than gold across all age groups. In addition to being a popular form of investment, cryptos are also widely used in Russia, according to research firm Chainalysis. That said, new laws may curb the adoption of crypto as a means of payment in Russia.

Why it matters: Although cryptos were largely unregulated for many years, their popularity is driving a new era of regulations on cryptos. Russia has been more cautious than many other nations, and has also disclosed that it may create a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) in the coming years. The new laws that would prevent cryptos from being used as a means of payment in Russia may hinder their adoption, but if it is legal to buy them as an investment, crypto ownership in Russia may rise in the coming years. Russia has struggled with a flagging currency due to aggressive actions taken by the West, which means that alternative assets may be more popular in Russia than nations which have reserve currencies.