Square Cash thrives despite bitcoin’s decline
Square’s peer-to-peer (P2P) mobile payment app Square Cash, which added crypto trading in late January, is enjoying buoyant trade despite the weaker performance by bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies so far this year.
According to data from Instinet, Square Cash saw nearly two million downloads per month in May and June and is growing around three times faster that PayPal’s Venmo. It added that Square Cash is now within 200,000 downloads of Venmo’s total of 31.4 million.
“Square is more than just a bitcoin play,” Instinet’s executive director and analyst, Dan Dolev, told CNBC. “A lot of people were worried because it went up with bitcoin, but instead it’s decoupling.”
Decoupling from bitcoin
The app’s growth has stayed buoyant as the price of bitcoin has moved steadily lower. The data shows that download rates were particularly strong in May and June, when bitcoin’s price fell 19% and 15%, respectively. In addition, the app’s downloads were 154% higher from a year earlier in May and 153% higher in June, Dolev said.
Last month, US regulators agreed that New Yorkers could begin trading cryptocurrency on the app, but there was little impact on downloads. “When they opened up trading in New York, you would expect a bump in downloads, but it didn’t happen – if you look at the weekly trend it actually slowed slightly,” said Dolev.
Square’s founder and chief executive Jack Dorsey is a strong supporter of bitcoin and in 2014 helped enable merchants to accept the cryptocurrency as a payment method.