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RBI bans Bitcoin and other virtual currencies, investors concerned for tax dues

RBI bans Bitcoin and other virtual currencies, investors concerned for tax dues

Finance
MUMBAI: A day after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) barred banks from dealing in cryptocurrencies, investors rushed to square off positions and sought advice on how much tax they should pay on returns made in FY18 and if they can do so before the July-end deadline. The worry is that they may be left holding the virtual currency if they don’t sell it now and transfer the money into their bank accounts. They also fear a crackdown by tax authorities and other government agencies, experts said. Bitcoin exchanges such as Zebpay and CoinSecure saw a spike in transaction volumes of about 40%, with about 90% of that being on the sell side, sources said. Respondong to an email query, a spokesperson for CoinSecure said, “Yes, there has been some amount of panic selling. We’ve seen a 4x increase in o
Bitcoin exchange Coinbase launches early-stage venture fund

Bitcoin exchange Coinbase launches early-stage venture fund

Finance
Popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is launching a new incubator fund for early-stage start ups, the company announced Thursday."We're going to invest off our balance sheet into crypto companies," Coinbase President and Chief Operating Officer Asiff Hirji told CNBC's "Fast Money" Thursday. "We will invest in companies that are in the space and are aligned with our values."Profits from the fund will be "de minimis" in the scope of the entire company but the fund is already off to a $ 15 million start and set to grow, Hirji said. The fund's seed-stage investments, which will begin this week, will help companies and founders in the crypto and blockchain space get off the ground. It's also meant to focus on building relationships within that ecosystem, he said. In order to do that, Coinba...
A decade from now, bitcoin is more likely to be $100 than $100,000, economist says

A decade from now, bitcoin is more likely to be $100 than $100,000, economist says

Finance
The likelihood of bitcoin prices falling to $ 100 is greater than that of the digital currency trading at $ 100,000 a decade from now, Harvard University professor and economist Kenneth Rogoff said on Tuesday. "I think bitcoin will be worth a tiny fraction of what it is now if we're headed out 10 years from now ... I would see $ 100 as being a lot more likely than $ 100,000 ten years from now," Rogoff told CNBC's "Squawk Box." "Basically, if you take away the possibility of money laundering and tax evasion, its actual uses as a transaction vehicle are very small," the former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said. While bitcoin has been associated with illicit transactions, estimates of the proportion of the digital currency used in illegal activities vary. Shone Ans...
Bitcoin energy use in Iceland set to overtake homes, says local firm

Bitcoin energy use in Iceland set to overtake homes, says local firm

Technology
Iceland is facing an "exponential" rise in Bitcoin mining that is gobbling up power resources, a spokesman for Icelandic energy firm HS Orka has said.This year, electricity use at Bitcoin mining data centres is likely to exceed that of all Iceland's homes, according to Johann Snorri Sigurbergsson.He said many potential customers were keen to get in on the act."If all these projects are realised, we won't have enough energy for it," he told the BBC.Mr Sigurbergsson's calculations were first reported by the Associated Press.Iceland has a small population, of around 340,000 people.But in recent years it has seen a marked increase in the number of new data centres, often built by firms wishing to tout green credentials. Nearly 100% of energy in Iceland comes from renewable sources.Bitcoin mini...