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Regulation

Israel Bitcoin Association Wants Local Banks To Disclose Crypto Policies

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The latest cryptocurrency news show that Bitcoiners in Israel are prepared to change a lot of things in their country. According to the Israel Bitcoin Association which is a nonprofit promoting the use of Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto, a freedom of information petition was filed with a Jerusalem court – seeking to require local banks to disclose their policies on money originating from cryptocurrencies.

The news first appeared in the local news daily outlet Globes on August 19. As many best cryptocurrency news sites then showed, state banks are required to report reasons for refusing transactions to the central bank of the country, the Bank of Israel. This is why the association previously reached out to the bank, asking for clarification on cryptocurrency policies of commercial banks – but was refused.

The association chairman Meni Rosenfeld then told Globes that the Bank of Israel refused the request on the grounds that these were “industry secrets.” This is why the Israel Bitcoin Association moved forward with a legal petition to make the disclosure mandatory. As the legal adviser Jonathan Klinger said:

“Under the Banking (Licensing) Law, it is the duty of a bank to state to the Bank of Israel the policy under which it refuses to conduct transactions. We therefore contacted the Bank of Israel and asked for this information, but the Bank of Israel did not agree to disclose this policy to us. We therefore decided to petition the court to force the Bank of Israel to provide us with a copy of the policy submitted to it by the banks.”

Israeli banks have been denying the Israel Bitcoin Association the ability to open accounts in the country, even though the association does not buy or sell cryptocurrency. This, as the report shows, is likely due to the association’s name which includes the word Bitcoin.

So far, many other traders and crypto related businesses have struggled with difficulties making deposits and remaining tax compliant because of the crypto-averse banking policies in Israel. According to some reports in the altcoin news, cryptocurrency traders in Israel cannot pay taxes and are unable to make deposits of funds obtained through cryptocurrencies.

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Libra coin news

Chinese Crypto Czar: Facebook’s Libra ‘Might Be Unstoppable’

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The new director of China's Research Institute on Digital Currency, Changchun Mu, believes that even though the world powers do not welcome Facebook's Libra coin, the stablecoin and its advance is now unstoppable. The Chinese crypto czar officially assumed his role at the Institute on September 6 this year, leading the online education platform. There have been six lecture issued by the crypto chief - shared on many best cryptocurrency news sites and local media outlets. In the series, Mu answered a range of crypto questions - ranging from Libra and its technical features - to the potential integration with the international currency system. The Chinese crypto czar also touted the advantages of China's own digital currency and how it compared to Libra. “No countries welcome Libra, but it might be unstoppable anyways,” Mu said in the third lecture of the series. “It is very unlikely that one can totally stop people from buying Libra despite rigorous regulations.” The Chinese crypto czar also explained that the most a central bank could do to prevent Libra from entering a country would be to ask all of their payment institutions and commercial banks not to process any transactions which are related to Libra. Still, there are a few back channels through which users could circumvent the ban to purchase Libra, as he noted. The czar also cited underground Bitcin trading in China as an example of how it could work. Even though exchanges in China have blocked Bitcoin transactions and payment institutions (and commercial banks are also prohibited from processing BTC transactions) there are still some agencies which use virtual private networks (VPNs) to buy Bitcoin from foreign exchanges, as Mu noted. The Chinese crypto czar said that the situation applies to Libra, too. “Even if Facebook is blocked in China, people will use indirect ways to purchase it from abroad once Libra comes out,” Mu said. As he also said in the latest cryptocurrency news, there was only one possibility to stop Libra. “If the U.S. bans Libra legally, then Libra will certainly be stopped.” There are a few extreme cases where a country fully embraces Libra, the Chinese crypto czar said. He noted that Zimbabwe (a country with rampant inflation) last year announced that it welcomes any alternative currencies. As such, Zimbabwe is a clear example of such country.
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Regulation

Miners In Iran May Be Part Of A New Registration System Soon

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miners in iran
The country and cabinet of Iran is apparently looking into a new proposal which will help crypto miners in the country to register their cryptocurrency on an annual basis. As the latest cryptocurrency news show, the miners in Iran would license their work and provide more information on employment, rent agreements and other business activities - through licenses. First reported by Coindesk on September 19, a draft proposal to register crypto mining operations in Iran is apparently on its way to official approval in Tehran. The requirements and licenses are designed for miners in Iran to prevent any unsavory activities, all while helping the government control the mining activity and other activities related to crypto. The reports also showed that based on surveys of more than 1,600 crypto miners in Iran carried out by the analytics firm Gate Trade, even 35% of the respondents claimed to have earned income through mining and 70% of them were interested in learning more about the local mining businesses in the country. In times when Iran is facing international sanctions and inflation which are economic factors that resulted in a rise in national misery, there are more and more crypto miners in Iran, the best cryptocurrency news sites reported. In recent months, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding the Iranian government, too. Its attitude towards cryptocurrency is said to be a major game changer and something that could bring a lot of positive news in the country's crypto communities. In June this year, Iran's Ministry of Energy said that they would be cutting off power to mining operations using the country's energy grid - all until special pricing went into effect. A month later, the coming altcoin news showed that the special pricing was finalized and miners in Iran were expected to pay $0.07 per kilowatt-hour, which compares to $0.05 for most citizens. At the end of July this year, the country authorized cryptocurrency mining as an industrial activity. And while the cabinet rejected the use of cryptocurrencies in transactions at the start of August this year, Iran's National Tax Administration did agree to exempt the repatriated crypto mining earnings from taxation.  
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Regulation

US SEC Sues ICOBox For Conducting An Illegal $14M Securities Offering

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It seems like the United States Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has a lot on its hands right now. As many best cryptocurrency news sites report, there are lawsuits being prepared by the regulatory authority every day. In the recent news, we can see that US SEC sues ICOBox for conducting an illegal securities offering worth $14 million and acting as unregistered brokers. As a press release shared on September 18 showed, the US SEC claims that ICOBox and Evdokimov (the founder) sold the firm's ICO tokens to more than 2,000 investors in an unregistered coin offering back in 2017. The US SEC sues ICOBox and Evdokimov but also goes on to say that the defendants claimed that there would be a price increase in the tokens upon trading - and that the token holders would be able to swap them for other tokens at discount. The SEC Claims that the ICO tokens are now worthless, stating the following:
“By ignoring the registration requirements of the federal securities laws, ICOBox and Evdokimov exposed investors to investments, which are now virtually worthless, without providing information that is critical to making informed investment decisions.”
As we can also see in the latest cryptocurrency news, the US SEC and its complaint also states that ICOBox acted as an unregistered broker by facilitating ICOs which raised another $650 million for dozens of clients. The commission decided to charge ICOBox and Evdokimov with violating federal securities laws and is actively seeking injunctive relief, disgorgement with prejudgment interest and civil money penalties. Aside from the fact that the US SEC sues ICOBox, we recently reported that Blockstack PBC, a decentralized computing network which recently announced that it managed to raise more than $23 million in the first token offering which was approved by the SEC. The team behind Blockstack apparently spent around $2 million to gain approval from the SEC in advance of their token offering. Meanwhile, the coming altcoin news show that there are losses on the market. Bitcoin (BTC) was the first cryptocurrency to go in the red as it lost more than $500 in minutes and pulled a lot of altcoins alongside with it on the market. For what we know now, the recent updates show that the losses are extending.
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Altcoin News

OKEx Korea Delisted Monero, Dash, And Other Privacy-Cryptos Over FATF Demands

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The latest cryptocurrency news show that the South Korean arm of the cryptocurrency exchange OKEx has decided to remove support for five major altcoins. It is true that OKEx Korea delisted Monero, Dash and other coins due to new international regulations. As a blog post originally published on September 10 shows, OKEx Korea confirmed that it would halt trading of Monero (XMR), Dash (DASH), Zcash (ZEC), Horizen (ZEN) and Super Bitcoin (SBTC) on October 10. As the exchange revealed, the main reason for this is that as since they are focused on privacy, the coins fall foul of the new guidelines set out by the intergovernmental body which is the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). OKEx Korea delisted these altcoins, the blog post confirms, showing:
“Support for trading of 5 different cryptocurrencies, XMR, DASH, ZEC, ZEN, SBTC, will be terminated.”
As the news site reported, the sweeping changes to crypto transaction rules currently demand businesses to identify the two parties which are sending funds to each other - if a transaction exceeds the limit of $1,000.
"According to the statement corresponding to FATF R.16, OKEx Korea has restricted its implementation as the ' travel rule' recommends that exchanges be able to collect relevant information such as the name and address of the sender and recipient of the virtual asset. privacy-oriented cryptocurrency, aka that ' the dark Coin "has decided to take the deal end-of-support measures of the corresponding event," the blog post showing that OKEx delisted the five altcoins shows.
This comes in period when more than 200 countries are forced to theoretically implement the rules by June 2020. Still, the altcoin news show that there are concerns that doing so is physically impossible for a lot of decentralized blockchains. Now that OKEx Korea delisted the five cryptocurrencies, all of them make it possible to identify the sender and recipient of a transaction by design. An OKEx representative was also featured on many best cryptocurrency news sites a while ago, telling that the coins will only be delisted on OKEx Korea (OKEx.com.kr) but will remain listed on the global OKEx platform. The value of these coins, as the coming altcoin news show, has remained unchanged.
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