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This article was published on March 11, 2019

Problem gamblers more likely to obsessively trade cryptocurrency, research finds

Problem gamblers more likely to obsessively trade cryptocurrency, research finds

A new study has linked cryptocurrency trading obsession with problematic gambling – those who bet too regularly are at an elevated risk of trading cryptocurrency more frequently.

The study, which surveyed 876 adults who had gambled at least monthly, found that more than 50 percent of participants had traded cryptocurrency over the past year.

Additionally, over 75 percent of high-risk stock traders also traded cryptocurrencies. This, the research concludes, is likely due to their impulsivity and belief that they can beat or outsmart the fledgling cryptocurrency market.

Lead author Devin Mills commented: “For some people, trading cryptocurrency is seen as an investment opportunity. But there is an alarming proportion of people who are ‘gambling’ on these cryptocurrency markets as they would gamble on horses or sports or slots. And it has the potential to get them into significant trouble.”

The data collected showed that gamblers trading both cryptocurrency and high-risk stocks reported more problem gambling, anxiety symptoms, and overall greater depression than gamblers either trading only cryptocurrency or just high-risk stocks.

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As a result, researchers concluded both shared similar demographics and gambling preferences but also presented additive consequences which require further attention among researchers and mental health professionals.

These are the signs cryptocurrency trading is a problem

The correlation between cryptocurrency trading and problem gambling is intriguing, but it’s not new.

Cryptocurrency’s inherent volatility is likely to attract investors looking to make a quick buck. On the flipside, it’s also what makes cryptocurrency investing riskier.

Hard Fork previously wrote about a facility in Scotland called Castle Craig which opened a dedicated cryptocurrency addiction center last year because professionals there believed cryptocurrency addicts portrayed the same behavior as problem gamblers – they show an urge to continually trade cryptocurrencies despite suffering constant losses.

According to the facility, the signs of being addicted to trading digital currencies could include:

  • Spending a great deal of time on the activity of trading in cryptocurrency, checking prices and thinking about the activity – so that other occupations such as work, socializing and exercise do not get done
  • Debts and financial problems
  • Lying to friends and family about one’s activities/problems
  • Mood swings, feelings of hopelessness and depression
  • Anxiety, leading to physical symptoms such as sweating and tremors
  • Unrealistic views such as being ‘lucky’, chasing losses
  • Attempting to control activity without success

If you suffer from any of these symptoms or you think you could be suffering from addiction, seek help from a professional. If you’d like to find out more about cryptocurrency addiction, check out the TNW Answer session with Castle Craig’s professionals.

Want more blockchain news? Come to TNW2019, our tech conference in Amsterdam, and check out our Hard Fork track.

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