For some time Venezuela has been suffering from crippling hyperinflation. Although this is reportedly slowing, the country’s bitcoin trading figures have hit a new high.
Cointelegraph reports that Coin Dance, a monitoring resource that tracks trade volumes, reported on 2nd September, showed Venezuelans traded more last week than ever before. In the seven days ending 31st August, 114 billion sovereign bolivars (VES) changed hands on Local bitcoins alone.
According to the source, the figure dwarfs the previous record set the week before at 77 billion. However, in terms of bitcoin the surge was much smaller, rising from 465 BTC to 533 BTC.
These high figures underscore the weakness of Venezuela’s currency against all others. Although the government introduced financial controls in July that reduced the inflation rate, prior to that it sat at somewhere around 10 million percent, after the government’s action it fell to 265,000%.
The Venezuelan government continues to push the Petro, its controversial national digital currency, and in late August it introduced a remittance system for the Petro, however its usefulness remains uncertain in the wake of sweeping sanctions against the token.
Traki, one of the country’s major retail chains now accepts crypto payments using Pundi X’s blockchain-based point-of-sale device, called XPOS. This allows customers to pay in either BTC or ETH, as well as a number of other cryptocurrencies and Pundi X’s native tokens.
Michael Gomez, chief of Traki’s crypto assets department, said the retailer was committed to making crypto an accessible mode of payment in its stores. He said, “At Traki, we aspire to offer the most convenient options for our customers, and cryptocurrency has proven to be an effective payment solution […] This partnership with Pundi X solidifies our commitment to make cryptocurrency as easy to use as fiat currency in our stores.”