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Regulation

Chinese Central Bank Reaffirms Its Sentiment: Blockchain – Not Bitcoin

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The Shanghai branch of the People’s Bank of China recently commented the situation revolving around cryptocurrencies. As the announcement published in the news this Friday shows, the Chinese central bank observed a resurgence in the cryptocurrency related speculation through ICOs, IEOs, STOs and other capital raising or token distribution methods.

The crypto news show the Chinese central bank announcement in full, continuing to argue about the sale of tokens for Bitcoin, Ethereum and other virtual currencies and how it remains “essentially unauthorized illegal public financing, suspected of illegal sale of tokens, illegal issuance of securities and illegal fund-raising.”

The PBoC Shanghai branch also added that crimes via cryptocurrencies have “seriously disrupted the economic and financial disorder.” As such, the Chinese central bank noted that it will keep “monitoring the virtual currency business activities within the jurisdiction,” which will be “disposed of immediately” if discovered.

The Chinese media and analysts echoed this decision, which comes shortly after the leading state-run publicaiton named Xinhua released an entire article about Bitcoin. The article translates to ‘Bitcoin: The First Successful Application of Blockchain Technology’ and was seen by many on Twitter – being described as a groundbreaking development for the crypto space.

The head of the crypto focused venture fund Avon Ventures (which is a fund that is affiliated with Fidelity) reminded his followers that this article – while explaining the ins and outs of Bitcoin – calls the cryptocurrency “highly concentraded/centralized” phenomena and something that is bad for the climate or used for black market transactions.

What’s important at this point is the fact that the Chinese central bank is the first to bash digital assets through an article. The People’s Daily which is another state-run outlet in China reminded the people that Xi’s support for blockchain does not equate to support for crypto earlier this year, noting:

“The rise of blockchain technology was accompanied by that of cryptocurrencies, but innovation in blockchain technology does not mean we should speculate in virtual currencies.”

With a mixed climate and mixed reactions from the media, it is up to the Chinese to decide what does Bitcoin present and what could it change in the national and global economy.

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Regulation

DenmarkTax Agency Requests Users’ Background Of All Crypto Transactions

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The Denmark tax agency, the Skattestyrelsen or SKAT, requests from all of the traders to provide a full background of all of their crypto transactions according to the latest reports that we have in our crypto news.The users have already started receiving letters from the Denmark tax agency and in the letters, SKAT asked the crypto users to provide information about profits and losses for the fiscal years of 2016 and 2018 according to the First in First Out principles. These principles represent a method of inventory valuation since all of the goods are sold or used in the same order in which the consumers initially purchased them.Furthermore, the Danish tax agency for the rates used for each transaction, information on the purpose of acquiring the digital currencies and documentation regarding the entire process of creating a crypto wallet.  In terms of the exchange services, SKAT requests all of the crypto users to reveal the confirmation of the trading activity in the form of a screenshot where there can be seen the full name of the individual and the agreement on the creation of an account. In addition to that, Skat aims to examine the crypto consumers’ account statements from the bank accounts in the previous period. The founder of the crypto tax startup Koinly, Robin Singh commented:
 “Many of our Danish users have received these letters, Skat is asking for a full breakdown of all their transactions and asking them to fix all past reports as well. Filing tax on cryptocurrency trades is a difficult task as crypto traders usually hold several exchange accounts & wallets and freely transfer crypto between them, so there’s no easy way to figure out what the capital gains are for any particular trade.”
Skat mostly focuses on the crypto consumers' transactions in 2018 when it confirmed it was identifying more than 2,700 individuals that owed taxes on their BTC gains. The agency intended to go after each one of the users that avoided their payment obligations. Skat stated at that time:
 “If something does not match, we will contact them and ask for more information. However, how many people it is and what it may mean, it is still too early to say.”
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Regulation

Ukraine Adopts New Legislation Making Crypto Payments Legal

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New legislation was adopted by the Ukrainian Lawmakers that have the consequence of legalizing crypto payments as the country upgrades its framework in strict compliance to international anti-money laundering (AML) standards. Ukraine adopts new legislation right after a week later when they considered how the new bill will affect the crypto markets and we are reading further in the cryptocurrency news.According to Forklog, members of the Verkhovna Rada- Ukraine’s parliament, have adopted a new bill that sanctions international AML practices in the country’s cryptocurrency regulatory frame. In the newly adopted bill, cryptocurrency is now defined as property in Ukraine. Consequently, cryptocurrency owners can now use their digital assets as an agent for exchange paving the way for legalizing trading, payments, investments, and transfers.Also, in the new bill is included a provision for private individuals to act as cryptocurrency transmitters and custodians. However, those services must be done in strict compliance with financial monitoring and reporting standards introduced true the bill. Ukraine adopts the new bill hoping to boost the adoption of digital assets in the country.The news of the legalization of cryptocurrency payments comes after the announcement by the Ministry of Digital Transformation of Ukraine that it entered a partnership with a Belarusian crypto exchange. As reported by DC forecasts the goal of the partnership is to gain know-how from the Belarusian experience in making a legal frame for payments and cryptocurrency adoption in general sense.By the legalization of cryptocurrency payments, Ukraine has made an important step in developing a national cryptocurrency market. In the first half of this year, the capital city of Kyiv announced that it was taking into consideration the possibility of using Bitcoin payments in its public transport system. By enacting the new regulation for cryptocurrency payments, Ukraine is also in compliance with the guidelines enacted by the inter-governmental Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Form the beginning of 2019 FATF is keen on guiding member nations to enact more stern regulatory provisions.The chief focus for the FATF in relation to cryptocurrency has been compliance with AML regulations. Few crypto exchanges were made into compliance with FATF ‘Travel Rule’. In the writing of the bill, Ukrainian MPs cooperated with the European Union (EU)- funded cryptocurrency experts. The government of Ukraine is hopeful that the enactment of the new bill will aid its goal of securing €500 million in financial assistance from the (EU).
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Nordea Bank Announces Crypto Trading Ban For Its 31,500 Employees

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Analysts in the cryptocurrency news today are shocked by one of the leading banks in Denmark, Nordea Bank, and its decision to ban cryptocurrency trading for all of its 31,500 employees. The ban will be officialized immediately and prohibits employees from trading even on their own time.This prohibition was previously upheld on December 2 by a Danish court. At the time, a press release followed the ruling. Nordea Bank then issued a blog post, noting that "Employees are permitted to keep any existing [crypto] holdings,” and adding that they were encouraged to sell them.Meanwhile, the finance industry union in Denmark known as Finansforbundet brought a class action lawsuit against Nordea and its cryptocurrency prohibition in 2018 - based on the ground that the ban interfered with the personal lives of the employees. It appears that this bank which includes the largest financial group in the Nordia countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) was worried that the employees might get mixed up with some unethical or criminal activities. Meanwhile, one spokesperson from Nordea Bank spoke about the labor court's decision and said:
“The market for crypto-currencies is unregulated and not transparent. It makes it hard to monitor where the money comes from. It increases the risk that investors, including our employees, may unwillingly get involved in activities that are unethical or outright illegal.”
He also added that the company is "satisfied that the court ruled in our favour" and noted that Nordea Bank is confident about this decision.
“It [the decision] is allowing a corporation to impede the private lives of its employees. It is infringing upon the personal freedoms of its employees.”
There is in fact nothing out of the ordinary in Nordea's prohibition. Some cryptocurrency exchanges have prohibited crypto purchases among employees and specialized their personnel within larger financial organizations such as commodities traders, which are commonly subject to restrictions on their personal assets.The Danish court and its press release was designed to answer the question why is Nordea Bank doing this and referred to the prior statements from the bank which showed the following:
"Investments in cryptocurrency have been restricted due to the unregulated nature of these assets which are not subject to investor protection regulations or authority supervision and related risks including volatility and liquidity risk as well as financial crime risks, e.g. that proceeds that employees might obtain from selling bitcoins derive from criminal activities.”
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Regulation

Korean Government Will Impose Crypto Capital Gains Tax In 2020

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The Korean Government will impose crypto capital gains tax starting in 2020 after the country prepared the legal tools to tax from the very sale of crypto assets as we are reading further in the coming crypto news.Until recently, the Korean Government was one of the most active markets for crypto speculation but there was still not a completed framework to tax capital gains from the sale of digital assets as per the Korea Times. The Ministry of Economy and Finance also started working on creating a measure that will become a tax bill from 2020. An official from the Economic Ministry said:
 “Related discussions have been taking place. The revised bill will be drawn up by the first half of next year.”
The Korean national assembly also worked on a crypto taxation bill and the bill was aiming to increase the transparency on all parts of the process of trading digital coins. However, Korea will not try to tax capital gains from the sale of digital assets. If the new legislation follows the usual approach to taxing capital gains, the people of Korea will have to supply a detailed history of crypto trading deals. The virtual currency exchange will also have to keep separate records for each user as well as detailed personal information.Most of the crypto exchanges already have a KYC procedure for the number of coins traded. The Korean trades also will link the accounts to bank accounts and trade directly in Korean won and also the decentralized exchanges or obscure markets and it is impossible to trade anonymously this year. The taxing of Bitcoin and other digital coins will counter to the crypto spirit which is seen as existing beyond the national-backed fiat. However, the sale of virtual coin generates the fiat gains and is deemed taxable. But the idea of collecting a database of transactions and ownership which looks likes another attempt to try and control Bitcoin.The Korean Government will boost the interest in crypto trading after it got low in 2019 and a part of the slide comes from the lowered activity on the markets. Bitcoin however still remains attractive and remains one of the chief sources of gains for this year. Korea joined the long list of countries that have turned to track crypto transactions.
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