A study of Australian cryptocurrency traders has discovered that 8 out of ten are men.

The study examined data from seven cryptocurrency trading exchanges spanning a period of 12 months. More than 83 percent of the registered 312,633 traders were male, according to the work by the Australian Digital Commerce Association and Accenture (ADCA).

Whilst the gender divide was the biggest result, the data also showed that 71 percent of traders were under 40 years of age, with 18-to-29 year olds the largest group at 40 percent.

The study highlighted that cryptocurrency trading has become big business in Australia, with exchanges processing more than 2.7 million transactions worth a total $A3.9 billion over the year. Chief executive of the ADCA Nicholas Giuretto commented that the results demonstrated a growing demand for virtual currencies, adding that “These results demonstrate that Australians are enthusiastically participating in the market for digital currencies,”.

Whilst the virtual currency economy may be booming, women are seemingly not taking part. The study made no speculation on why female investors are so under-represented, however the result is consistent with a recent poll conducted online. 99.bitcoins.com found that less than 8 percent of global cryptocurrency investors are women, even less than in Australia specifically.

The results mark a startling divide, however, efforts have been made to change this. Earlier this month campaigners seized an opportunity provided by International Women’s Day to launch the first annual Bitcoin Women’s Day. The event received heavy backing, with sponsorship coming from BitPay, The Digital Currency Council, The Bitcoin Foundation, TatianaCoin, ChangeTip, The Chamber of Digital Currency, and many others leaders in the Bitcoin community. The organizer of the event Sarah Boone Martin saw it as a fantastic opportunity, both to celebrate the fantastic women in the cryptocurrency industry and to raise awareness of virtual currencies. She gave journalists some insight regarding the cryptocurrency gender divide:

“There’s nothing gendered about digital currency. There just aren’t many people in the ecosystem. Bitcoin Women’s Day is a chance to talk to more people – men and women, lawyers, bankers, tech and finance pros – about this rapidly growing industry.”

With events such as Bitcoin Women’s Day proving a huge success, with many taking up the Twitter hash #BitcoinWomensDay to voice their support, we may see more women entering the virtual currency space. Further studies such as the ADCA’s will discover how the the demographic changes in coming years, with many participants driving for a more inclusive and balanced digital currency space.

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