More South Koreans are buying cryptocurrency than ever before and spending more fiat to do so, local daily news network Arirang Daily News reported April 20.

Referencing the results of a December 2018 survey from nonprofit organization the Korea Financial Investors Protection Foundation, Arirang revealed 7.4% of the 2,500 adults surveyed said they had bought cryptocurrency.

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That figure was up 1% on the year before, despite the industry facing hurdles locally in the form of shifting regulation and various exchange hacks.

Not only the number of purchasers had changed: out of those who now owned crypto, many were buying more of it than before.

Compared to 2017, the average investment per person shot up 64% to over $6,000, Arirang said.

According to the survey, it was older investors who were the most common crypto buyers — those in their 50s, followed by 30-40-year-olds.

As Cointelegraph reported, bitcoin’s (BTC) price uptick to $5,300 at the start of April has spurred the reemergence of a bullish trend peculiar to the South Korean market. Known as the “Kimchi Premium,” the phenomenon sees local traders pay a premium for bitcoin in particular on exchanges when measured in USD terms.

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Problems meanwhile persist for market participants, with one South Korean exchange closing its doors last week and another, Bithumb, continue to grapple with the effect of a hack worth $18 million that occurred in March.

At the same time, Bithumb’s parent company has gained a $200 million investment from a Japanese fund, subsequently revealing plans for both United States and Japan expansion.

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