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30th January 2023 > > Nigeria.


Nigerians are the keenest of crypto adopters.

Market Snap

Market Wrap

Argo Blockchain, a BTC miner that very nearly went bust last year, was a highly speculative investment by the CCC treasury in early December 2022 for mere cents on the dollar. At the time Argo was not unique in having lost 90% plus of its value during last year’s precipitous falls in crypto prices, but it appeared to offer some advantages over some of the other beaten up miners.

On 28th December 2022 the CCC commented that following an agreement for Argo to sell its mining facility but – crucially - keep its rigs meant that the CCC treasury would double up on its original, utterly irresponsible, bottom fishing purchase at or close to the elevated opening price that day at 7p or so.

Closing at over 15p on Friday, both those trades look remarkably well-timed for the potential end of the crypto winter. Hundreds of percent gains in under two months only ever happens very occasionally and (speaking frankly) only ever in the crypto world.

But there are always potential downsides.

Argo has been hit with a lawsuit in the US over its IPO (initial public offering) of ADS (American depositary shares) in 2021.

Those who are faint-hearted in their investing style will be knee-jerk selling this morning. Contrarians worldwide are taking note.

Curious Cryptos’ Commentary — Nigeria

On 20th February 2021 the CCC reported that the price of BTC in Nigeria was at a 45% premium to the global price, at $80k compared to $55k. The cause of this discrepancy? The Central Bank of Nigeria had placed a ban on regulated financial institutions from providing services to centralised cryptocurrency exchanges in Nigeria.

This misguided attempt at “banning” cryptos drove buyers to P2P crypto trading platforms, at elevated prices, and into the arms of scammers and scoundrels.

It wasn’t long before common sense prevailed, and the central bank withdrew its rather foolish edict.

At this time of writing the price of BTC on NairaEx is 17.6mm NGN (Nigerian naira). At nearly 460 NGN to the dollar that equates to a price of over $38k compared to nearly $24k for the rest of the world, a near 60% premium.

The government of Nigeria has announced plans to accelerate a shift to a cashless society, under the guise of wishing to reduce corruption, a noble aim which if achieved would help to alleviate the extraordinary wealth gap suffered by many of its citizens.

To facilitate this process cash withdrawals have been subject to weekly and daily limits ( It remains to be seen how effective this is in addressing the graft that appears endemic to an outsider.

What it does appear to have achieved is to drive a growing desire to transfer wealth into BTC. Nigeria is now by far and away the greatest source of “How to buy BTC” searches following another announcement of a short time period to exchange old naira bills for new ones, leaving the old ones utterly worthless.

In some ways the Central Bank of Nigeria is doing us all – except for those living in Nigeria – a big favour.

Its actions are just a foretaste of what can, and will, happen as governments worldwide roll out CBDCs (Central Bank Digital Currencies).

We also have hard evidence that actions like this drive people to adopt cryptos, and especially BTC, when faced with such a scenario.

Crypto supporters have always believed this to be the case. We can now see it happen in real time.

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