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New Zealand residents officially allowed to receive a salary in cryptocurrency

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New Zealand took a significant step towards the adoption of cryptocurrencies: the authorities officially allowed people to pay salaries in bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrency Trading in New Zealand

The country's tax service has officially recognized the income of individuals received in cryptocurrency as legal.

In its statement, the tax authority clarified the taxation of digital currencies paid as salaries to wage earners. Tax in this case will be levied at a fixed rate. In addition, self-employed citizens who receive payment in cryptocurrency will not have to pay additional taxes at all.

Inland Revenue Dept. by ForkLog on Scribd

Also, only cryptocurrency wages, which can be directly converted to fiat, will be taxed. This is due to the fact that the digital currency industry is still underdeveloped so that anyone can make everyday purchases using cryptocurrency.

Cryptocurrencies that cannot be directly converted into fiat will not be considered a tax as a salary. “Inadmissible” digital currencies include those that reflect the characteristics of securities (stocks and bonds), vouchers, etc. Such currencies can still be paid to employees, but they no longer have to pay tax.

Thus, New Zealand has opened up great opportunities for all cryptocurrency enthusiasts. Now people can calmly receive a salary in cryptocurrency, although so far this has more difficulties than advantages. This option is more suitable for those who have additional sources of income in fiat, or the most ardent supporters of the industry. When cryptocurrencies are accepted everywhere, salary in them will become a necessity.

Publication date 08/13/2019
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Study: cryptocurrency investments in Russia and the world, reality and prospects

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In July 2019, Grayscale Investments published the results of a survey of U.S. citizens on their readiness to invest in cryptocurrencies. More than two-thirds of the respondents were ready to do this, although they noted a number of factors stopping them from investing in cryptocurrency right now.

At the same time, a number of sociological studies conducted in recent years demonstrate that despite the fact that millions of people around the world are already investing in cryptocurrencies, the growth potential of cryptocurrency market participants is still great.

How many people have already invested in cryptocurrencies , how many are ready to follow them, and under what conditions they will do it – we understand this material.

The global picture of cryptocurrency investments

One of the largest studies on the use of cryptocurrencies was conducted by B2B International by order of the Russian company Kaspersky Lab. In October-November 2018, scientists interviewed almost 14 thousand people from 22 countries.

The survey showed that 6% of respondents use cryptocurrency, 5% used it, and another 14% did not buy it yet, but would like to do it in the future. In total, among the respondents, 19% at least once bought cryptocurrencies .

However, many respondents voiced problems that stop them from buying cryptocurrencies. First of all, this is high volatility and the lack of the necessary legislation.

Another large-scale survey was conducted by the popular statistical service Statista in June this year. The service has published the top countries whose residents use cryptocurrency. It is interesting that emerging economies are leading the new ranking:

What is this data talking about? Experts suggest that with the help of cryptocurrencies, local residents protect their savings during periods of high inflation. Last summer, analysts noted high excitement in the Turkish cryptocurrency market amid a sharp drop in the rate of the Turkish lira.

Moreover, in a similar Statista ranking for the previous year, the leaders are different. If Turkey still came in first place, then in 2018 European countries followed it: Romania, Poland, Spain and the Czech Republic, then the USA, Austria, Germany and Italy.

Last June, the reputable international organization Ipsos, together with the financial conglomerate ING, also conducted a study of investor attitudes towards cryptocurrencies among residents of 15 countries in Europe, the USA and Australia.

It turned out that 9% of Europeans owned cryptocurrency (as well as 7% in Australia and 8% in the USA), while the highest rate was recorded in Turkey – 18%. The study also showed that in the future the number of cryptocurrency users will increase: 25% of respondents expressed a desire to invest in digital assets.

At the same time, exactly two-thirds of respondents in all countries knew what cryptocurrencies were, and the majority agreed that they are a more risky asset compared to other investment objects such as real estate, gold and even stocks.

The use of cryptocurrencies in Russia

Kaspersky Lab also published selected research results in Russia. 37% of our compatriots know what cryptocurrency is, but they don’t understand how it works. 42% of Russians did not use cryptocurrencies and did not plan to do this in the future. At the same time, 7% of Russian respondents tried to mine , 6% bought cryptocurrency, and 8% of respondents who have ever made payments in cryptocurrency do it every day.

Meanwhile, the All-Russian Center for the Study of Public Opinion (VTsIOM) in April of this year provided other data : only 2% of Russians have ever bought bitcoin .

Judging by the performance of Statista’s June study, the level of cryptocurrency use in Russia since last year, according to Kaspersky Lab’s figures, has risen slightly. According to the service, in Russia 9% of residents used or owned digital assets.

Age is an important factor in predisposition to cryptocurrencies

Bankrate recently presented the results of a June survey of its users regarding their preferred long-term investment. There were several investment options to choose from, from real estate to government bonds.

According to the results, the desire to invest in cryptocurrency for the long term is most active among millennials (from 21 to 38 years) – 9%, while in general among the respondents – 4%.

At the same time, sociologists give conflicting data on the attitude towards representatives of the “Generation Z” cryptocurrencies (people aged 13 to 21). A survey of 1800 Americans of this age, conducted by Cint for Business Insider, showed that 26% expressed some degree of desire to buy cryptocurrency, while 53% of the survey participants said they most likely would not invest in cryptocurrencies.

A deeper understanding of the sentiment among Generation Z may come from a study by Manole Capital, published in July 2019. 17% of the participants in their survey admitted that they already own cryptocurrency. The majority (72%) called the financial asset the main function of cryptocurrencies, the remaining 28% see them as a means of calculation. As for the owners of cryptocurrencies, their “portfolio” is very diverse: 31% hold bitcoin, 23% hold ether, 22% hold lightcoin, 12% hold ripple, and another 12% hold other altcoins.

Also in July, the American investment firm Grayscale Investments summed up the results of a survey of 1100 US residents aged 25 to 64 years, conducted in conjunction with Q8 Research. Interest in buying bitcoin was expressed by more than a third of respondents (36%). However, many respondents admitted that they are alarming several key issues:

  • High probability of theft of funds due to hacker attacks. 75% of all respondents and 68% of those who are interested in investing in bitcoin are afraid of cybercrime.
  • The lack of a legal framework – it is unclear how regulators relate to Bitcoin, and which cryptocurrencies fall under securities laws.

This survey also made it possible to compile the following portrait of a possible crypto investor: middle age, middle class living in the suburbs, the majority (70%) have children, and almost half (49%) earn about $ 100,000 a year.

People from this group are more experienced and more susceptible to risk than "average" investors, analysts at Grayscale noted. At the same time, the majority is ready to invest small amounts in digital gold, and the growth potential and limited emissions are key factors in the attractiveness of the first cryptocurrency.

The theory of “generational preferences” is confirmed by studies in other countries. So, in South Korea – a country among which residents of cryptocurrencies are also extremely popular – millennials also turned out to be one of the most active groups of investors. Among them, crypto-investors were 22.7%. In total, among the Koreans surveyed, almost 14% invested in cryptocurrencies.

A survey on willingness to invest in digital assets was also conducted in Germany. Last fall, non-profit organizations – consumer centers – in the lands of Hesse and Saxony interviewed residents of the regions and found that 28% of respondents aged 18-29 admitted that they could purchase cryptocurrencies.

The higher the income, the more likely it is to invest in cryptocurrencies

Finally, in the matter of investing in bitcoin and other crypto assets, there is a correlation not only with age, but also with the respondents' income. This was shown by a Clovr study published last fall.

The largest number of positive answers (43%) to the question of whether they invested in cryptocurrency was given by respondents with annual incomes from $ 75 to $ 99 thousand. Although in the group with incomes exceeding $ 100 thousand, 40% were such. Millennials (41%) were also the most active group of investors, followed by representatives of Generation X (24%).

The higher the income, the greater the predisposition to cryptocurrencies. The financial advisory company deVere Group in May published the results of a survey of its customers – residents of different countries with an income of over 1 million pounds. It turned out that 68% have either already invested in cryptocurrencies, or are ready to do this before 2022. Among the preferred crypto assets, they named bitcoin, ether and ripple.

What are social studies among cryptocurrency investors talking about?

The results of various surveys cite the following conclusions:

  • Among the world population, there is a high level of awareness about the existence of cryptocurrencies. At the same time, the largest number of crypto-investors (as a share of the total population) are in developing countries, as well as in South Korea.
  • In developed countries, the share of those who own cryptocurrencies or once bought them is slightly less than 10%.
  • In almost all countries where surveys are conducted, the percentage of people wishing to invest in cryptocurrencies is several times higher than those who have already done so. Thus, there is a growth potential for the number of crypto investors.
  • Increased risks compared to other types of assets are a key reason why investors are not ready to invest in cryptocurrencies right now. They are scared away by high volatility, regulatory uncertainty, and a high probability of becoming a victim of cybercriminals.
  • In Russia, data on the total number of cryptocurrency holders varies widely – from 2% to 9% of the total population. At the same time, approximately 15% of Russians who have not yet bought cryptocurrencies are willing to invest in them, provided the risks are reduced.
  • There is a strong correlation between age and willingness to invest in cryptocurrencies. The most active crypto investors are millennials.
  • Over time, both the general awareness of cryptocurrencies and the willingness to invest in them are growing. Time plays in favor of the crypto industry.

Although the global number of cryptocurrency users is still far from being called a popular asset among investors, it has long gone beyond the narrow community.

Entering the cryptocurrency market of new participants is hindered by common problems, but it is comforting that they are all in the process of solution. And sometimes these are completely stereotypes that need to be fought, as in the case of fear of hacker attacks. Nevertheless, analysts noted a colossal reserve for an increase in the number of crypto-investors, and this indicates a further growth of the entire ecosystem.

Publication date 08/20/2019
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ZenGo crypto wallet testing Libra network

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The day before, the developers of ZenGo, a unique crypto wallet without private keys, announced the support of the Libra test network from Facebook.

According to ZenGo, now crypto wallet users can send and receive crypto funds from Libra just like any other digital one in ZenGo. The developers, however, point out that digital coins that circulate in the test network naturally have no value and are intended only for testing the functionality.

In a publication from ZenGo, it is noted that those who want to get acquainted with Libra can activate access to the testnet in their account. Users are advised to create a backup, after activating the function, the user will receive their first Libra tools. It is noteworthy that the Libra project is developing its own crypto wallet – Calibra, so far it is not available to all representatives of the crypto community who are interested in the new product.

Representatives of ZenGo warn that the test network of the Facebook project may be revised from time to time and closed for technical work. At this time, all data from the testnet can be reset along with the transaction history of the user and the balance, so you should take care of backup.

At the moment, the ZenGo app is only available to iOS gadget owners. The application allows its users to purchase Bitcoin, Ethereum, as well as Binance Coin (the native token of the Binance crypto exchange) using bank cards or the Apple Pay service.

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Media: 97% of cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea are on the verge of bankruptcy

Low trading volumes jeopardize the continued existence of the vast majority of South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges, as well as forcing local startups to look for ways to list their coins on foreign sites, according to Business Korea. In particular, the publication draws attention to the fact that only five South Korean sites are today in the first hundred exchanges in terms of trading volume. “It is no exaggeration to say that because of the low […]

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Low trading volumes jeopardize the continued existence of the vast majority of South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges, as well as forcing local startups to look for ways to list their coins on foreign sites, according to Business Korea .

In particular, the publication draws attention to the fact that only five South Korean sites are today in the first hundred exchanges in terms of trading volume.

“It is not an exaggeration to say that due to the low volume of transactions, 97% of local exchanges are on the verge of bankruptcy, ” the article says.

Despite the fact that the publication does not cite data that supported its statement, at least one South Korean exchange – Coinnest – has already closed this year. However, the circumstances of the incident are still in question. So, in an interview with CoinDesk Korea , Coinnest representatives said that the closure of the exchange was "a natural result of a decrease in trading volumes", and also mentioned "regulatory problems and business solutions."

At the same time, as BlockchainJournal wrote , it is possible that Coinnest could take such a step because of the prosecution of exchange leaders who were accused of receiving a bribe in exchange for cryptocurrency listing last year.

Be that as it may, one cannot argue with the fact of low trading volumes on South Korean exchanges. And it is precisely this factor that is supposed to be forcing an increasing number of local cryptocurrency startups to be hosted on foreign platforms. And the latter, apparently, do not intend to miss this opportunity.

So, according to the publication, Binance Labs and the BW.com exchange show particular interest in South Korean projects. The first is actively attracting local blockchain startups to its accelerator, while the second has already flipped coins from projects such as Ziktalk, Storichain, Payexpress and Sigma Chain, and intends to open fiat markets in pairs with the South Korean won by the end of the month.

Other “difficult market conditions for local cryptocurrency exchanges” are also called, supposedly forcing projects to look for listing opportunities abroad, including the big problems with making deposits and withdrawing funds in fiat that investors face.

In addition, 200 small exchanges cannot open verified virtual accounts, which deprives investors of any protection.

According to the publication, the current landscape of the cryptocurrency market in South Korea is noticeably different from the picture that could be observed in late 2017 and early 2018. For example, in December 2017, this Asian country accounted for about 20% of the global trading volume of bitcoin, and cryptomania reached such a high level that Prime Minister Lee Nak Yong even called it “a serious pathological phenomenon.”

Earlier in August, it became known that the South Korean authorities will tighten control over local cryptocurrency exchanges, expanding the powers of the Financial Services Commission (FSC). In particular, the FSC unit, previously engaged in the preparation of recommendations for working with exchanges for banks, will now directly control trading platforms. Also, a licensing system for exchanges will be introduced in the country in accordance with the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF).

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