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[FULL ANALYSIS] Bitcoin exchanges and payment processors in Canada are now regulated as Money Service Businesses

Hello Bitcoiners!
Many of you saw my tweet yesterday about the Bitcoin regulations in Canada. As usual, some journalists decided to write articles about my tweets without asking me for the full context :P Which means there has been a lot of misunderstanding. Particuarly, these regulations mean that we can lower the KYC requirements and no longer require ID documents or bank account connections! We can also increase the daily transaction limit from $3,000 per day to $10,000 per day for unverified accounts. The main difference is that we now have a $1,000 per-transaction limit (instead of per day) and we must report suspicious transactions. It's important to read about our reporting requirements, as it is the main difference since pretty much every exchange was doing KYC anyway.
Hopefully you appreciate the transparency, and I'm available for questions!
Cheers,
Francis
*********************************************
Text below is copied from: https://medium.com/bull-bitcoin/bitcoin-exchanges-and-payment-processors-in-canada-are-now-regulated-as-money-service-businesses-1ca820575511

Bitcoin is money, regulated like money

Notice to Canadian Bitcoin users

If you are the user of a Canadian Bitcoin company, be assured that:
You may notice that the exchange service you are using has change its transactions limits or is now requiring more information from you.
You can stop reading this email now without any consequence! Otherwise, keep regarding if you are interested in my unique insights into this important topic!

Background on regulation

Today marks an important chapter for Bitcoin’s history in Canada: Bitcoin is officially regulated as money (virtual currency) under the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act of Canada (PCMLTFA), under the jurisdiction of the Financial Transaction and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC).
This is the culmination of 5 years of effort by numerous Bitcoin Canadian advocates collaborating with the Ministry of Finance, Fintrac and other Canadian government agencies.
It is important to note that there is no new Bitcoin law in Canada. In June of 2014, the Governor General of Canada (representing Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II) gave royal asset to Bill C-31, voted by parliament under Stephen Harper’s Conservative government, which included amendments to the PCMLTFA to included Bitcoin companies (named “dealers in virtual currency”) as a category of Money Service Businesses.
Thereafter, FINTRAC engaged in the process of defining what exactly is meant by “dealing in virtual currency” and what particular rules would apply to the businesses in this category. Much of our work was centred around excluding things like non-custodial wallets, nodes, mining and other activities that were not related exchange or payments processing.
To give an idea, the other categories that apply to traditional fiat currency businesses are:
When we say that Bitcoin is now regulated, what we mean is that these questions have been settled, officially published, and that they are now legally binding.
Businesses that are deemed to be “dealing in virtual currency” must register with FINTRAC as a money service business, just like they would if they were doing traditional currency exchange or payment processing.
There is no “license” required, which means that you do not need the government’s approval before you can operate a Bitcoin exchange business. However, when you operate a Money Service Business, you must register and comply with the laws… otherwise you risk jail time and large fines.

What activities are regulated as Money Service Business activity?

A virtual currency exchange transaction is defined as: “an exchange, at the request of another person or entity, of virtual currency for funds, funds for virtual currency or one virtual currency for another.” This includes, but is not limited to:

Notice to foreign Bitcoin companies with clients in Canada

Regardless of whether or not your business is based in Canada, you must register with FINTRAC as a Foreign Money Service Business, if:

How this affects BullBitcoin.com and Bylls.com

The regulation of Bitcoin exchange and payment services has always been inevitable. If we want Bitcoin to be considered as money, we must accept that it will be regulated like other monies. Our stance on the regulation issue has always been that Bitcoin exchanges and payment processors should be regulated like fiat currency exchanges and payment processors, no more, no less. This is the outcome we obtained.
To comply with these regulations, we are implementing a few changes to our Know-Your-Customer requirement and transaction limits which may paradoxically make your experience using Bull Bitcoin and Bylls even more private and convenient!

The bad news

The good news

To understand these regulations, we highly recommend reading this summary by our good friends and partners at Outlier Compliance.

Summary of our obligations

Our responsibilities:
The information required to perform a compliant know-your-customer validation:
Record keeping obligations:

Suspicious transaction reporting

Satoshi Portal is required to make suspicious transactions report to FINTRAC after we have detected a fact that amounts to reasonable grounds to suspect that one of your transactions is related to the commission or attempted commission of a money laundering offence or a terrorist activity financing offence.
Failure by Satoshi Portal Inc. to report a suspicious transaction could lead to up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to $2,000,000, or both, for its executives.
We are not allowed to share with anyone other than FINTRAC, including our clients, the contents of a suspicious transaction report as well as the fact that a suspicious transaction report has been filed.

What is suspicious activity?

Note for bitcoinca: this section applies ONLY to Bull Bitcoin. Most exchanges have much stricter interpretation of what is suspicious. You should operate under the assumption that using Coinjoin or TOR will get you flagged at some other exchanges even though it's okay for Bull Bitcoin. That is simply because we have a more sophisticated understanding of privacy best practices.
Identifying suspicious behavior is heavily dependent on the context of each transaction. We understand and take into account that for many of our customers, privacy and libertarian beliefs are of the utmost importance, and that some users may not know that the behavior they are engaging in is suspicious. When we are concerned or confused about the behaviors of our users, we endeavour to discuss it with them before jumping to conclusions.
In general, here are a few tips:
Here are some examples of behavior that we do not consider suspicious:
Here are some example indicators of behavior that would lead us to investigate whether or not a transaction is suspicious:

What does this mean for Bitcoin?

It was always standard practice for Bitcoin companies to operate under the assumption they would eventually be regulated and adopt policies and procedures as if they were already regulated. The same practices used for legal KYC were already commonplace to mitigate fraud (chargebacks).
In addition, law enforcement and other government agencies in Canada were already issuing subpoenas and information requests to Bitcoin companies to obtain the information of users that were under investigation.
We suspect that cash-based Bitcoin exchanges, whether Bitcoin ATMs, physical Bitcoin exchanges or Peer-to-Peer trading, will be the most affected since they will no longer be able to operate without KYC and the absence of KYC was the primary feature that allowed them to justify charging such high fees and exchange rate premiums.
One thing is certain, as of today, there is no ambiguity whatsoever that Bitcoin is 100% legal and regulated in Canada!
submitted by FrancisPouliot to BitcoinCA [link] [comments]

Subreddit Stats: btc top posts from 2019-01-06 to 2020-01-05 11:19 PDT

Period: 363.85 days
Submissions Comments
Total 1000 86748
Rate (per day) 2.75 237.19
Unique Redditors 317 7747
Combined Score 194633 356658

Top Submitters' Top Submissions

  1. 31014 points, 162 submissions: Egon_1
    1. Vitalik Buterin to Core Maxi: “ok bitcoiner” .... (515 points, 206 comments)
    2. These men are serving life without parole in max security prison for nonviolent drug offenses. They helped me through a difficult time in a very dark place. I hope 2019 was their last year locked away from their loved ones. FreeRoss.org/lifers/ Happy New Year. (502 points, 237 comments)
    3. "It’s official Burger King just accepted Bitcoin Cash and GoC token as a payment option in Slovenia." (423 points, 112 comments)
    4. "HOLY SATOSHI! 😱😱 I did it! A smart card that produces valid BitcoinCash signatures. Who would love to pay with a card—to a phone?? Tap took less than a second!👟..." (368 points, 105 comments)
    5. Chrome 'Has Become Surveillance Software. It's Time to Switch' -> Brave to support BCH! (330 points, 97 comments)
    6. Gavin Andresen (2017): "Running a network near 100% capacity is irresponsible engineering... " (316 points, 117 comments)
    7. "Evidently @github has banned all the Iranian users without an ability for them to download their repositories. A service like Github must be a public good and must not be controlled by a centralized entity. Another great example of why we as a society need to make web3 a reality" (314 points, 117 comments)
    8. Roger Ver: "Bitcoin Cash acceptance is coming to thousands of physical shops in Korea" (313 points, 120 comments)
    9. Paul Sztorc: “Will people really spend $70-$700 to open/modify a lightning channel when there's an Altcoin down the street which will process a (USD-denominated) payment for $0.05 ? Many people seem to think yes but honestly I just don't get it” (306 points, 225 comments)
    10. Food For Thought (303 points, 105 comments)
  2. 29021 points, 157 submissions: MemoryDealers
    1. Bitcoin Cash is Lightning Fast! (No editing needed) (436 points, 616 comments)
    2. Brains..... (423 points, 94 comments)
    3. Meanwhile in Hong Kong (409 points, 77 comments)
    4. Ross Ulbricht has served 6 years in federal prison. (382 points, 156 comments)
    5. Just another day at the Bitcoin Cash accepting super market in Slovenia. (369 points, 183 comments)
    6. Why I'm not a fan of the SV community: My recent bill for defending their frivolous lawsuit against open source software developers. (369 points, 207 comments)
    7. History Reminder: (354 points, 245 comments)
    8. It's more decentralized this way. (341 points, 177 comments)
    9. The new Bitcoin Cash wallet is so fast!!!!! (327 points, 197 comments)
    10. The IRS wants to subpoena Apple and Google to see if you have downloaded crypto currency apps. (324 points, 178 comments)
  3. 6909 points, 37 submissions: BitcoinXio
    1. Tim Pool on Twitter: “How the fuck are people justifying creating a world like the one's depicted in Fahrenheit 451 and 1984? You realize that censorship and banning information was a key aspect of the dystopian nightmare right?” (435 points, 75 comments)
    2. The creator of the now famous HODL meme says that the HODL term has been corrupted and doesn’t mean what he intended; also mentions that the purpose of Bitcoin is to spend it and that BTC has lost its value proposition. (394 points, 172 comments)
    3. Erik Voorhees on Twitter: “I wonder if you realize that if Bitcoin didn’t work well as a payment system in the early days it likely would not have taken off. Many (most?) people found the concept of instant borderless payments captivating and inspiring. “Just hold this stuff” not sufficient.” (302 points, 66 comments)
    4. Bitfinex caught paying a company to astroturf on social media including Reddit, Twitter, Medium and other platforms (285 points, 86 comments)
    5. WARNING: If you try to use the Lightning Network you are at extremely HIGH RISK of losing funds and is not recommended or safe to do at this time or for the foreseeable future (274 points, 168 comments)
    6. Craig Wright seems to have rage quit Twitter (252 points, 172 comments)
    7. No surprise here: Samson Mow among other BTC maxi trolls harassed people to the point of breakdown (with rape threats, etc) (249 points, 85 comments)
    8. On Twitter: “PSA: The Lightning Network is being heavily data mined right now. Opening channels allows anyone to cluster your wallet and associate your keys with your IP address.” (228 points, 102 comments)
    9. btc is being targeted and attacked, yet again (220 points, 172 comments)
    10. Brian Armstrong CEO of Coinbase using Bitcoin Cash (BCH) to pay for food, video in tweet (219 points, 66 comments)
  4. 6023 points, 34 submissions: money78
    1. BSV in a nutshell... (274 points, 60 comments)
    2. There is something going on with @Bitcoin twitter account: 1/ The URL of the white paper has been changed from bitcoin.com into bitcoin.org! 2/ @Bitcoin has unfollowed all other BCH related accounts. 3/ Most of the posts that refer to "bitcoin cash" have been deleted?!! Is it hacked again?! (269 points, 312 comments)
    3. "Not a huge @rogerkver fan and never really used $BCH. But he wiped up the floor with @ToneVays in Malta, and even if you happen to despise BCH, it’s foolish and shortsighted not to take these criticisms seriously. $BTC is very expensive and very slow." (262 points, 130 comments)
    4. Jonathan Toomim: "At 32 MB, we can handle something like 30% of Venezuela's population using BCH 2x per day. Even if that's all BCH ever achieved, I'd call that a resounding success; that's 9 million people raised out of poverty. Not a bad accomplishment for a hundred thousand internet geeks." (253 points, 170 comments)
    5. Jonathan Toomim: "BCH will not allow block sizes that are large enough to wreak havoc. We do our capacity engineering before lifting the capacity limits. BCH's limit is 32 MB, which the network can handle. BSV does not share this approach, and raises limits before improving actual capacity." (253 points, 255 comments)
    6. What Bitcoin Cash has accomplished so far 💪 (247 points, 55 comments)
    7. Which one is false advertising and misleading people?! Bitcoin.com or Bitcoin.org (232 points, 90 comments)
    8. A message from Lightning Labs: "Don't put more money on lightning than you're willing to lose!" (216 points, 118 comments)
    9. Silk Road’s Ross Ulbricht thanks Bitcoin Cash’s [BCH] Roger Ver for campaigning for his release (211 points, 29 comments)
    10. This account just donated more than $6600 worth of BCH via @tipprbot to multiple organizations! (205 points, 62 comments)
  5. 4514 points, 22 submissions: unstoppable-cash
    1. Reminder: bitcoin mods removed top post: "The rich don't need Bitcoin. The poor do" (436 points, 89 comments)
    2. Peter R. Rizun: "LN User walks into a bank, says "I need a loan..." (371 points, 152 comments)
    3. It was SO simple... Satoshi had the answer to prevent full-blocks back in 2010! (307 points, 150 comments)
    4. REMINDER: "Bitcoin isn't for people that live on less than $2/day" -Samson Mow, CSO of BlockStream (267 points, 98 comments)
    5. "F'g insane... waited 5 hrs and still not 1 confirmation. How does anyone use BTC over BCH BitcoinCash?" (258 points, 222 comments)
    6. Irony:"Ave person won't be running LN routing node" But CORE/BTC said big-blocks bad since everyone can't run their own node (256 points, 161 comments)
    7. BitPay: "The Wikimedia Foundation had been accepting Bitcoin for several years but recently switched pmt processors to BitPay so they can now accept Bitcoin Cash" (249 points, 61 comments)
    8. FreeTrader: "Decentralization is dependent on widespread usage..." (195 points, 57 comments)
    9. The FLIPPENING: Fiat->OPEN Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash! Naomi Brockwell earning more via BitBacker than Patreon! (193 points, 12 comments)
    10. LN Commentary from a guy that knows a thing or 2 about Bitcoin (Gavin Andresen-LEAD developer after Satoshi left in 2010) (182 points, 80 comments)
  6. 3075 points, 13 submissions: BeijingBitcoins
    1. Last night's BCH & BTC meetups in Tokyo were both at the same restaurant (Two Dogs). We joined forces for this group photo! (410 points, 166 comments)
    2. Chess.com used to accept Bitcoin payments but, like many other businesses, disabled the option. After some DMs with an admin there, I'm pleased to announce that they now accept Bitcoin Cash! (354 points, 62 comments)
    3. WSJ: Bitfinex Used Tether Reserves to Mask Missing $850 Million, Probe Finds (348 points, 191 comments)
    4. Bitcoiners: Then and Now [MEME CONTEST - details in comments] (323 points, 72 comments)
    5. I'd post this to /Bitcoin but they would just remove it right away (also I'm banned) (320 points, 124 comments)
    6. So this is happening at the big protest in Hong Kong right now (270 points, 45 comments)
    7. /Bitcoin mods are censoring posts that explain why BitPay has to charge an additional fee when accepting BTC payments (219 points, 110 comments)
    8. The guy who won this week's MillionaireMakers drawing has received ~$55 in BCH and ~$30 in BTC. It will cost him less than $0.01 to move the BCH, but $6.16 (20%) in fees to move the BTC. (164 points, 100 comments)
    9. The Bitcoin whitepaper was published 11 years ago today. Check out this comic version of the whitepaper, one of the best "ELI5" explanations out there. (153 points, 12 comments)
    10. Two Years™ is the new 18 Months™ (142 points, 113 comments)
  7. 2899 points, 18 submissions: jessquit
    1. Oh, the horror! (271 points, 99 comments)
    2. A few days ago I caught flak for reposting a set of graphs that didn't have their x-axes correctly labeled or scaled. tvand13 made an updated graph with correct labeling and scaling. I am reposting it as I promised. I invite the viewer to draw their own conclusions. (214 points, 195 comments)
    3. Do you think Bitcoin needs to increase the block size? You're in luck! It already did: Bitcoin BCH. Avoid the upcoming controversial BTC block size debate by trading your broken Bitcoin BTC for upgraded Bitcoin BCH now. (209 points, 194 comments)
    4. Master list of evidence regarding Bitcoin's hijacking and takeover by Blockstream (185 points, 113 comments)
    5. PSA: BTC not working so great? Bitcoin upgraded in 2017. The upgraded Bitcoin is called BCH. There's still time to upgrade! (185 points, 192 comments)
    6. Nobody uses Bitcoin Cash (182 points, 88 comments)
    7. Double-spend proofs, SPV fraud proofs, and Cashfusion improvements all on the same day! 🏅 BCH PLS! 🏅 (165 points, 36 comments)
    8. [repost] a reminder on how btc and Bitcoin Cash came to be (150 points, 102 comments)
    9. Holy shit the entire "negative with gold" sub has become a shrine devoted to the guilded astroturfing going on in rbtc (144 points, 194 comments)
    10. This sub is the only sub in all of Reddit that allows truly uncensored discussion of BTC. If it turns out that most of that uncensored discussion is negative, DON'T BLAME US. (143 points, 205 comments)
  8. 2839 points, 13 submissions: SwedishSalsa
    1. With Bitcoin, for the first time in modern history, we have a way to opt out. (356 points, 100 comments)
    2. In this age of rampant censorship and control, this is why I love Bitcoin. (347 points, 126 comments)
    3. The crypto expert (303 points, 29 comments)
    4. Satoshi reply to Mike Hearn, April 2009. Everybody, especially newcomers and r-bitcoin-readers should take a step back and read this. (284 points, 219 comments)
    5. Bitcoin Cash looking good lately. (235 points, 33 comments)
    6. Roger Ver bad (230 points, 61 comments)
    7. History of the BTC scaling debate (186 points, 54 comments)
    8. MFW i read Luke Jr wants to limit BTC blocks to 300k. (183 points, 116 comments)
    9. Meanwhile over at bitcoinsv... (163 points, 139 comments)
    10. Listen people... (155 points, 16 comments)
  9. 2204 points, 10 submissions: increaseblocks
    1. China bans Bitcoin again, and again, and again (426 points, 56 comments)
    2. China bans Bitcoin (again) (292 points, 35 comments)
    3. Bitcoin Cash Network has now been upgraded! (238 points, 67 comments)
    4. So you want small blocks with high fees to validate your own on chain transactions that happen OFF CHAIN? (212 points, 112 comments)
    5. It’s happening - BTC dev Luke jr writing code to Bitcoin BTC codebase to fork to lower the block size to 300kb! (204 points, 127 comments)
    6. Former BTC maximalist admits that maxi's lied cheated and stealed to get SegWit and Lightning (201 points, 135 comments)
    7. Just 18 more months to go! (172 points, 86 comments)
    8. Bitcoin Cash ring - F*CK BANKS (167 points, 51 comments)
    9. LTC Foundation chat leaked: no evidence of development, lack of transparency (155 points, 83 comments)
    10. A single person controls nearly half of all the Lightning Network’s capacity (137 points, 109 comments)
  10. 2138 points, 12 submissions: JonyRotten
    1. 'Craig Is a Liar' – Early Adopter Proves Ownership of Bitcoin Address Claimed by Craig Wright (309 points, 165 comments)
    2. 200,000 People Have Signed Ross Ulbricht's Clemency Petition (236 points, 102 comments)
    3. Street Artist Hides $1,000 in BTC Inside a Mural Depicting Paris Protests (236 points, 56 comments)
    4. Craig Wright Ordered to Produce a List of Early Bitcoin Addresses in Kleiman Lawsuit (189 points, 66 comments)
    5. Ross Ulbricht Clemency Petition Gathers 250,000 Signatures (163 points, 24 comments)
    6. Ross Ulbricht Letter Questions the Wisdom of Imprisoning Non-Violent Offenders (160 points, 50 comments)
    7. Expert Witness in Satoshi Case Claims Dr Wright's Documents Were Doctored (155 points, 44 comments)
    8. California City Official Uses Bitcoin Cash to Purchase Cannabis (151 points, 36 comments)
    9. Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania (141 points, 9 comments)
    10. McAfee to Launch Decentralized Token Exchange With No Restrictions (137 points, 35 comments)

Top Commenters

  1. jessquit (16708 points, 2083 comments)
  2. Ant-n (7878 points, 1517 comments)
  3. MemoryDealers (7366 points, 360 comments)
  4. Egon_1 (6205 points, 1001 comments)
  5. 500239 (5745 points, 735 comments)
  6. BitcoinXio (4640 points, 311 comments)
  7. LovelyDay (4353 points, 457 comments)
  8. chainxor (4293 points, 505 comments)
  9. MobTwo (3420 points, 174 comments)
  10. ShadowOfHarbringer (3388 points, 478 comments)

Top Submissions

  1. The perfect crypto t-shirt by Korben (742 points, 68 comments)
  2. The future of Libra Coin by themadscientistt (722 points, 87 comments)
  3. when you become a crypto trader... by forberniesnow (675 points, 54 comments)
  4. A Reminder Why You Shouldn’t Use Google. by InMyDayTVwasBooks (637 points, 209 comments)
  5. Imagine if in 2000 Apple just sat around all day shit-talking Microsoft. Apple would have never gone anywhere. Apple succeeded because they learned from their mistakes, improved, and got better. BCH should do the same. by guyfawkesfp (552 points, 255 comments)
  6. Bitcoin made The Simpsons intro! Sorry for the potato quality by Johans_wilgat (521 points, 44 comments)
  7. Vitalik Buterin to Core Maxi: “ok bitcoiner” .... by Egon_1 (515 points, 206 comments)
  8. Can't stop won't stop by Greentoboggan (514 points, 78 comments)
  9. These men are serving life without parole in max security prison for nonviolent drug offenses. They helped me through a difficult time in a very dark place. I hope 2019 was their last year locked away from their loved ones. FreeRoss.org/lifers/ Happy New Year. by Egon_1 (502 points, 237 comments)
  10. Blockchain? by unesgt (479 points, 103 comments)

Top Comments

  1. 211 points: fireduck's comment in John Mcafee on the run from IRS Tax Evasion charges, running 2020 Presidential Campaign from Venezuela in Exile
  2. 203 points: WalterRothbard's comment in I am a Bitcoin supporter and developer, and I'm starting to think that Bitcoin Cash could be better, but I have some concerns, is anyone willing to discuss them?
  3. 179 points: Chris_Pacia's comment in The BSV chain has just experienced a 6-block reorg
  4. 163 points: YourBodyIsBCHn's comment in I made this account specifically to tip in nsfw/gonewild subreddits
  5. 161 points: BeijingBitcoins's comment in Last night's BCH & BTC meetups in Tokyo were both at the same restaurant (Two Dogs). We joined forces for this group photo!
  6. 156 points: hawks5999's comment in You can’t make this stuff up. This is how BTC supporters actually think. From bitcoin: “What you can do to make BTC better: check twice if you really need to use it!” 🤦🏻‍♂️
  7. 155 points: lowstrife's comment in Steve Wozniak Sold His Bitcoin at Its Peak $20,000 Valuation
  8. 151 points: kdawgud's comment in The government is taking away basic freedoms we each deserve
  9. 147 points: m4ktub1st's comment in BCH suffered a 51% attack by colluding miners to re-org the chain in order to reverse transactions - why is nobody talking about this? Dangerous precident
  10. 147 points: todu's comment in Why I'm not a fan of the SV community: My recent bill for defending their frivolous lawsuit against open source software developers.
Generated with BBoe's Subreddit Stats
submitted by subreddit_stats to subreddit_stats [link] [comments]

MSB MTL Bitcoin ATM Question?

So I'm about to put a bunch of hash online. Been working on a new mine. I have a question about money services business or money transmitter licenses.
If I buy an ATM and said ATM only sells bitcoin that I mine am I a money transmitter?
I'm selling the coin I create and not sourcing it from another party and acting as an intermediary. I'm like farm to table only with bitcoin.
I want to sell the coin I MAKE.
I am of the position if I'm selling the coin I make it is no different than selling anything else you make like corn or artwork etc etc.
I want to sell said bitcoin with an ATM with no KYC on transactions up to say $8000
Thoughts? Things I'm overlooking? Any input would be appreciated.
submitted by NewFlipPhoneWhoDis to btc [link] [comments]

Trading Cryptocurrency Markets

Hello! My name is Slava Mikhalkin, I am a Project Owner of Crowdsale platform at Platinum, the company that knows how to start any ICO or STO in 2019.
If you want to avoid headaches with launching process, we can help you with ICO and STO advertising and promotion. See the full list of our services: Platinum.fund
I am also happy to be a part of the UBAI, the first educational institution providing the most effective online education on blockchain! We can teach you how to do ICO/STO in 2019. Today I want to tell you how to sell and transfer cryptocurrencies.
Major Exchanges
In finance, an exchange is a forum or platform for trading commodities, derivatives, securities or other financial instruments. The principle concern of an exchange is to allow trading between parties to take place in a fair and legally compliant manner, as well as to ensure that pricing information for any instrument traded on the exchange is reliable and coherently delivered to exchange participants. In the cryptocurrency space exchanges are online platforms that allow users to trade cryptocurrencies or digital currencies for fiat money or other cryptocurrencies. They can be centralized exchanges such a Binance, or decentralized exchanges such as IDEX. Most cryptocurrency exchanges allow users to trade different crypto assets with BTC or ETH after having already exchanged fiat currency for one of those cryptocurrencies. Coinbase and Kraken are the main avenue for fiat money to enter into the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
Function and History
Crypto exchanges can be market-makers that take bid/ask spreads as a commission on the transaction for facilitating the trade, or more often charge a small percentage fee for operating the forum in which the trade was made. Most crypto exchanges operate outside of Western countries, enabling them to avoid stringent financial regulations and the potential for costly and lengthy legal proceedings. These entities will often maintain bank accounts in multiple jurisdictions, allowing the exchange to accept fiat currency and process transactions from customers all over the globe.
The concept of a digital asset exchange has been around since the late 2000s and the following initial attempts at running digital asset exchanges foreshadows the trouble involved in attempting to disrupt the operation of the fiat currency baking system. The trading of digital or electronic assets predate Bitcoin’s creation by several years, with the first electronic trading entities running afoul of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) in late 2004. Companies such as Goldex, SydneyGoldSales, and Ozzigold, shut down voluntarily after ASIC found that they were operating without an Australian Financial Services License. E-Gold, which exchanged fiat USD for grams of precious metals in digital form, was possibly the first digital currency exchange as we know it, allowing users to make instant transfers to the accounts of other E-Gold members. At its peak in 2006 E-Gold processed $2 billion worth of transactions and boasted a user base of over 5 million people.
Popular Exchanges
Here we will give a brief overview of the features and operational history of the more popular and higher volume exchanges because these are the platforms to which newer traders will be exposed. These exchanges are recommended to use because they are the industry standard and they inspire the most confidence.
Bitfinex
Owned and operated by iFinex Inc, the cryptocurrency trading platform Bitfinex was the largest Bitcoin exchange on the planet until late 2017. Headquartered in Hong Kong and based in the US Virgin Island, Bitfinex was one of the first exchanges to offer leveraged trading (“Margin trading allows a trader to open a position with leverage. For example — we opened a margin position with 2X leverage. Our base assets had increased by 10%. Our position yielded 20% because of the 2X leverage. Standard trades are traded with leverage of 1:1”) and also pioneered the use of the somewhat controversial, so-called “stable coin” Tether (USDT).
Binance
Binance is an international multi-language cryptocurrency exchange that rose from the mid-rank of cryptocurrency exchanges to become the market dominating behemoth we see today. At the height of the late 2017/early 2018 bull run, Binance was adding around 2 million new users per week! The exchange had to temporarily disallow new registrations because its servers simply could not keep up with that volume of business. After the temporary ban on new users was lifted the exchange added 240,000 new accounts within two hours.
Have you ever thought whats the role of the cypto exchanges? The answer is simple! There are several different types of exchanges that cater to different needs within the ecosystem, but their functions can be described by one or more of the following: To allow users to convert fiat currency into cryptocurrency. To trade BTC or ETH for alt coins. To facilitate the setting of prices for all crypto assets through an auction market mechanism. Simply put, you can either mine cryptocurrencies or purchase them, and seeing as the mining process requires the purchase of expensive mining equipment, Cryptocurrency exchanges can be loosely grouped into one of the 3 following exchange types, each with a slightly different role or combination of roles.
Have you ever thought about what are the types of Crypto exchanges?
  1. Traditional Cryptocurrency Exchange: These are the type that most closely mimic traditional stock exchanges where buyers and sellers trade at the current market price of whichever asset they want, with the exchange acting as the intermediary and charging a small fee for facilitating the trade. Kraken and GDAX are examples of this kind of cryptocurrency exchange. Fully peer-to-peer exchanges that operate without a middleman include EtherDelta, and IDEX, which are also examples of decentralized exchanges.
  2. Cryptocurrency Brokers: These are website or app based exchanges that act like a Travelex or other bureau-de-change. They allow customers to buy or sell crypto assets at a price set by the broker (usually market price plus a small premium). Coinbase is an example of this kind of exchange.
  3. Direct Trading Platform: These platforms offer direct peer-to-peer trading between buyers and sellers, but don’t use an exchange platform in doing so. These types of exchanges do not use a set market rate; rather, sellers set their own rates. This is a highly risky form of trading, from which new users should shy away.
To understand how an exchange functions we need only look as far as a traditional stock exchange. Most all the features of a cryptocurrency exchange are analogous to features of trading on a traditional stock exchange. In the simplest terms, the exchanges fulfil their role as the main marketplace for crypto assets of all kinds by catering to buyers or sellers. These are some definitions for the basic functions and features to know: Market Orders: Orders that are executed instantly at the current market price. Limit Order: This is an order that will only be executed if and when the price has risen to or dropped to that price specified by the trader and is also within the specified period of time. Transaction fees: Exchanges will charge transactions fees, usually levied on both the buyer and the seller, but sometimes only the seller is charged a fee. Fees vary on different exchanges though the norm is usually below 0.75%. Transfer charges: The exchange is in effect acting as a sort of escrow agent, to ensure there is no foul play, so it might also charge a small fee when you want to withdraw cryptocurrency to your own wallet.
Regulatory Environment and Evolution
Cryptocurrency has come a long way since the closing down of the Silk Road darknet market. The idea of crypto currency being primarily for criminals, has largely been seen as totally inaccurate and outdated. In this section we focus on the developing regulations surrounding the cryptocurrency asset class by region, and we also look at what the future may hold.
The United States of America
A coherent uniform approach at Federal or State level has yet to be implemented in the United States. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network published guidelines as early as 2013 suggesting that BTC and other cryptos may fall under the label of “money transmitters” and thus would be required to take part in the same Anti-money Laundering (AML) and Know your Client (KYC) procedures as other money service businesses. At the state level, Texas applies its existing finance laws. And New York has instituted an entirely new licensing system.
The European Union
The EU’s approach to cryptocurrency has generally been far more accommodating overall than the United States, partly due to the adaptable nature of pre-existing laws governing electronic money that predated the creation of Bitcoin. As with the USA, the EU’s main fear is money laundering and criminality. The European Central Bank (ECB) categorized BTC as a “convertible decentralized currency” and advised all central banks in the EU to refrain from trading any cryptocurrencies until the proper regulatory framework was put in place. A task force was then set up by the European Parliament in order to prevent and investigate any potential money laundering that was making use of the new technology.
Likely future regulations for cryptocurrency traders within the European Union and North America will probably consist of the following proposals: The initiation of full KYC procedures so that users cannot remain fully anonymous, in order to prevent tax evasion and curtail money laundering. Caps on payments that can be made in cryptocurrency, similar to caps on traditional cash transactions. A set of rules governing tax obligations regarding cryptocurrencies Regulation by the ECB of any companies that offer exchanges between cryptocurrencies and fiat currencies It is less likely for other countries to follow the Chinese approach and completely ban certain aspects of cryptocurrency trading. It is widely considered more progressive and wiser to allow the technology to grow within a balanced accommodative regulatory framework that takes all interests and factors into consideration. It is probable that the most severe form of regulation will be the formation of new governmental bodies specifically to form laws and exercise regulatory control over the cryptocurrency space. But perhaps that is easier said than done. It may, in certain cases, be incredibly difficult to implement particular regulations due to the anonymous and decentralized nature of crypto.
Behavior of Cryptocurrency Investors by Demographic
Due to the fact that cryptocurrency has its roots firmly planted in the cryptography community, the vast majority of early adopters are representative of that group. In this section we cover the basic structure of the cryptocurrency market cycle and the makeup of the community at large, as well as the reasons behind different trading decisions.
The Cryptocurrency Market Cycle
Bitcoin leads the bull rally. FOMO (Fear of missing out) occurs, the price surge is a constant topic of mainstream news, business programs cover the story, and social media is abuzz with cryptocurrency chatter. Bitcoin reaches new All Timehigh (ATH) Market euphoria is fueled with even more hype and the cycle is in full force. There is a constant stream of news articles and commentary on the meteoric, seemingly unstoppable rise of Bitcoin. Bitcoin’s price “stabilizes”, In the 2017 bull run this was at or around $14,000. A number of solid, large market cap altcoins rise along with Bitcoin; ETH & LTC leading the altcoins at this time. FOMO comes into play, as the new ATH in market cap is reached by pumping of a huge number of alt coins.
Top altcoins “somewhat” stabilize, after reaching new all-time highs. The frenzy continues with crypto success stories, notable figures and famous people in the news. A majority of lesser known cryptocurrencies follow along on the upward momentum. Newcomers are drawn deeper into crypto and sign up for exchanges other than the main entry points like Coinbase and Kraken. In 2017 this saw Binance inundated with new registrations. Some of the cheapest coins are subject to massive pumping, such as Tron TRX which saw a rise in market cap from $150 million at the start of December 2017 to a peak of $16 billion! At this stage, even dead coins or known scams will get pumped. The price of the majority of cryptocurrencies stabilize, and some begin to retract. When the hype is subsiding after a huge crypto bull run, it is a massive sell signal. Traditional investors will begin to give interviews about how people need to be careful putting money into such a highly volatile asset class. Massive violent correction begins and the market starts to collapse. BTC begins to fall consistently on a daily basis, wiping out the insane gains of many medium to small cap cryptos with it. Panic selling sweeps through the market. Depression sets in, both in the markets, and in the minds of individual investors who failed to take profits, or heed the signs of imminent collapse. The price stagnation can last for months, or even years.
The Influence of Age upon Trading
Did you know? Cryptocurrencies have been called “stocks for millennials” According to a survey conducted by the Global Blockchain Business Council, only 5% of the American public own any bitcoin, but of those that do, an overwhelming majority of 71% are men, 58% of them are between the ages of 18 and 35, and over half of them are minorities. The same survey gauged public attitude toward the high risk/high return nature of cryptocurrency, in comparison to more secure guaranteed small percentage gains offered by government bonds or stocks, and found that 30% would rather invest $1,000 in crypto. Over 42% of millennials were aware of cryptocurrencies as opposed to only 15% of those ages 65 and over. In George M. Korniotis and Alok Kumar’s study into the effects of aging on portfolio management and the quality of decisions made by older investors, they found “that older and experienced investors are more likely to follow “rules of thumb” that reflect greater investment knowledge. However, older investors are less effective in applying their investment knowledge and exhibit worse investment skill, especially if they are less educated and earn lower income.”
Geographic Influence upon Trading
One of the main drivers of the apparent seasonal ebb and flow of cryptocurrency prices is the tax situation in the various territories that have the highest concentrations of cryptocurrency holders. Every year we see an overall market pull back beginning in mid to late January, with a recovery beginning usually after April. This is because “Tax Season” is roughly the same across Europe and the United States, with the deadline for Income tax returns being April 15th in the United States, and the tax year officially ending the UK on the 6th of April. All capital gains must be declared before the window closes or an American trader will face the powerful and long arm of the IRS with the consequent legal proceedings and possible jail time. Capital gains taxes around the world vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction but there are often incentives for cryptocurrency holders to refrain from trading for over a year to qualify their profits as long term gain when they finally sell. In the US and Australia, for example, capital gains are reduced if you bought cryptocurrency for investment purposes and held it for over a year. In Germany if crypto assets are held for over a year then the gains derived from their sale are not taxed. Advantages like this apply to individual tax returns, on a case by case basis, and it is up to the investor to keep up to date with the tax codes of the territory in which they reside.
2013 Bull run vs 2017 Bull run price Analysis
In late 2016 cryptocurrency traders were faced with the task of distinguishing between the beginnings of a genuine bull run and what might colorfully be called a “dead cat bounce” (in traditional market terminology). Stagnation had gripped the market since the pull-back of early 2014. The meteoric rise of Bitcoin’s price in 2013 peaked with a price of $1,100 in November 2013, after a year of fantastic news on the adoption front with both Microsoft and PayPal offering BTC payment options. It is easy to look at a line going up on a chart and speak after the fact, but at the time, it is exceeding difficult to say whether the cat is actually climbing up the wall, or just bouncing off the ground. Here, we will discuss the factors that gave savvy investors clues as to why the 2017 bull run was going to outstrip the 2013 rally. Hopefully this will help give insight into how to differentiate between the signs of a small price increase and the start of a full scale bull run. Most importantly, Volume was far higher in 2017. As we can see in the graphic below, the 2017 volume far exceeds the volume of BTC trading during the 2013 price increase. The stranglehold MtGox held on trading made a huge bull run very difficult and unlikely.
Fraud & Immoral Activity in the Private Market
Ponzi Schemes Cryptocurrency Ponzi schemes will be covered in greater detail in Lesson 7, but we need to get a quick overview of the main features of Ponzi schemes and how to spot them at this point in our discussion. Here are some key indicators of a Ponzi scheme, both in cryptocurrencies and traditional investments: A guaranteed promise of high returns with little risk. Consistentflow of returns regardless of market conditions. Investments that have not been registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Investment strategies that are a secret, or described as too complex. Clients not allowed to view official paperwork for their investment. Clients have difficulties trying to get their money back. The initial members of the scheme, most likely unbeknownst to the later investors, are paid their “dividends” or “profits” with new investor cash. The most famous modern-day example of a Ponzi scheme in the traditional world, is Bernie Madoff’s $100 billion fraudulent enterprise, officially titled Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC. And in the crypto world, BitConnect is the most infamous case of an entirely fraudulent project which boasted a market cap of $2 billion at its peak.
What are the Exchange Hacks?
The history of cryptocurrency is littered with examples of hacked exchanges, some of them so severe that the operation had to be wound up forever. As we have already discussed, incredibly tech savvy and intelligent computer hackers led by Alexander Vinnik stole 850000 BTC from the MtGox exchange over a period from 2012–2014 resulting in the collapse of the exchange and a near-crippling hammer blow to the emerging asset class that is still being felt to this day. The BitGrail exchange suffered a similar style of attack in late 2017 and early 2018, in which Nano (XRB) was stolen that was at one point was worth almost $195 million. Even Bitfinex, one of the most famous and prestigious exchanges, has suffered a hack in 2016 where $72 million worth of BTC was stolen directly from customer accounts.
Hardware Wallet Scam Case Study
In late 2017, an unfortunate character on Reddit, going by the name of “moody rocket” relayed his story of an intricate scam in which his newly acquired hardware wallet was compromised, and his $34,000 life savings were stolen. He bought a second hand Nano ledger into which the scammers own recover seed had already been inserted. He began using the ledger without knowing that the default seed being used was not a randomly assigned seed. After a few weeks the scammer struck, and withdrew all the poor HODLer’s XRP, Dash and Litecoin into their own wallet (likely through a few intermediary wallets to lessen the very slim chances of being identified).
Hardware Wallet Scam Case Study Social Media Fraud
Many gullible and hapless twitter users have fallen victim to the recent phenomenon of scammers using a combination of convincing fake celebrity twitter profiles and numerous amounts of bots to swindle them of ETH or BTC. The scammers would set up a profile with a near identical handle to a famous figure in the tech sphere, such as Vitalik Buterin or Elon Musk. And then in the tweet, immediately following a genuine message, follow up with a variation of “Bonus give away for the next 100 lucky people, send me 0.1 ETH and I will send you 1 ETH back”, followed by the scammers ether wallet address. The next 20 or so responses will be so-called sockpuppet bots, thanking the fake account for their generosity. Thus, the pot is baited and the scammers can expect to receive potentially hundreds of donations of 0.1 Ether into their wallet. Many twitter users with a large follower base such as Vitalik Buterin have taken to adding “Not giving away ETH” to their username to save careless users from being scammed.
Market Manipulation
It also must be recognized that market manipulation is taking place in cryptocurrency. For those with the financial means i.e. whales, there are many ways in which to control the market in a totally immoral and underhanded way for your own profit. It is especially easy to manipulate cryptos that have a very low trading volume. The manipulator places large buy orders or sell walls to discourage price action in one way or the other. Insider trading is also a significant problem in cryptocurrency, as we saw with the example of blatant insider trading when Bitcoin Cash was listed on Coinbase.
Examples of ICO Fraudulent Company Behavior
In the past 2 years an astronomical amount of money has been lost in fraudulent Initial Coin Offerings. The utmost care and attention must be employed before you invest. We will cover this area in greater detail with a whole lesson devoted to the topic. However, at this point, it is useful to look at the main instances of ICO fraud. Among recent instances of fraudulent ICOs resulting in exit scams, 2 of the most infamous are the Benebit and PlexCoin ICOs which raised $4 million for the former and $15 million for the latter. Perhaps the most brazen and damaging ICO scam of all time was the Vietnamese Pincoin ICO operation, where $660million was raised from 32,000 investors before the scammer disappeared with the funds. In case of smaller ICO “exit scamming” there is usually zero chance of the scammers being found. Investors must just take the hit. We will cover these as well as others in Lesson 7 “Scam Projects”.
Signposts of Fraudulent Actors
The following factors are considered red flags when investigating a certain project or ICO, and all of them should be considered when deciding whether or not you want to invest. Whitepaper is a buzzword Salad: If the whitepaper is nothing more than a collection of buzzwords with little clarity of purpose and not much discussion of the tech involved, it is overwhelmingly likely you are reading a scam whitepaper.
Signposts of Fraudulent Actors §2
No Code Repository: With the vast majority of cryptocurrency projects employing open source code, your due diligence investigation should start at GitHub or Sourceforge. If the project has no entries, or nothing but cloned code, you should avoid it at all costs. Anonymous Team: If the team members are hard to find, or if you see they are exaggerating or lying about their experience, you should steer clear. And do not forget, in addition to taking proper precautions when investing in ICOs, you must always make sure that you are visiting authentic web pages, especially for web wallets. If, for example, you are on a spoof MyEtherWallet web page you could divulge your private key without realizing it and have your entire portfolio of Ether and ERC-20 tokens cleaned out.
Methods to Avoid falling Victim
Avoiding scammers and the traps they set for you is all about asking yourself the right questions, starting with: Is there a need for a Blockchain solution for the particular problem that a particular ICO is attempting to solve? The existing solution may be less costly, less time consuming, and more effective than the proposals of a team attempting to fill up their soft cap in an ICO. The following quote from Mihai Ivascu, the CEO of Modex, should be kept in mind every time you are grading an ICO’s chances of success: “I’m pretty sure that 95% of ICOswill not last, and many will go bankrupt. ….. not everything needs to be decentralized and put on an open source ledger.”
Methods to Avoid falling Victim §2 Do I Trust These People with My Money, or Not?
If you continue to feel uneasy about investing in the project, more due diligence is needed. The developers must be qualified and competent enough to complete the objectives that they have set out in the whitepaper.
Is this too good to be true?
All victims of the well-known social media scams using fake profiles of Vitalik Buterin, or Bitconnect investors for that matter, should have asked themselves this simple question, and their investment would have been saved. In the case of Bitconnect, huge guaranteed gains proportional to the amount of people you can get to sign up was a blatant pyramid scheme, obviously too good to be true. The same goes for Fake Vitalik’s offer of 1 ether in exchange for 0.1 ETH.
Selling Cryptocurrencies, Several reasons for selling with the appropriate actions to take:
If you are selling to buy into an ICO, or maybe believe Ether is a safer currency to hold for a certain period of time, it is likely you will want to make use of the Ether pair and receive Ether in return. Obviously if the ICO is on the NEO or WANchain blockchain for example, you will use the appropriate pair. -Trading to buy into another promising project that is listing on the exchange on which you are selling (or you think the exchange will experience a large amount of volume and become a larger exchange), you may want to trade your cryptocurrency for that exchange token. -If you believe that BTC stands a good chance of experiencing a bull run then using the BTC trading pair is the suitable choice. -If you believe that the market is about to experience a correction but you do not want to take your gains out of the market yet, selling for Tether or “tethering up” is the best play. This allows you to keep your locked-in profits on the exchange, unaffected by the price movements in the cryptocurrency markets,so that you can buy back in at the most profitable moment. -If you wish to “cash out” i.e. sell your cryptocurrency for fiat currency and have those funds in your bank account, the best pair to use is ETH or BTC because you will likely have to transfer to an exchange like Kraken or Coinbase to convert them into fiat. If the exchange offers Litecoin or Bitcoin Cash pairs it could be a good idea to use these for their fast transaction time and low fees.
Selling Cryptocurrencies
Knowing when and how to sell, as well as strategies to inflate the value of your trade before sale, are important skills as a trader of any product or financial instrument. If you are satisfied that the sale itself of the particular amount of a token or coin you are trading away is the right one, then you must decide at what price you are going to sell. Exchanges exercise their own discretion as to which trading “pairs” they will offer, but the most common ones are BTC, ETH, BNB for Binance, BIX for Bibox etc., and sometimes Tether (USDT) or NEO. As a trader, you decide which particular cryptocurrency to exchange depending on your reason for making that specific trade at that time.
Methods of Sale
Market sell/Limit sell on exchange: A limit sell is an order placed on an exchange to sell as soon as (also specifically only if and when) the price you specified has been hit within the time limit you select. A market order executes the sale immediately at the best possible price offered by the market at that exact time. OTC (or Over the Counter) selling refers to sale of securities or cryptocurrencies in any method without using an exchange to intermediate the trade and set the price. The most common way of conducting sales in this manner is through LocalBitcoins.com. This method of cryptocurrency selling is far riskier than using an exchange, for obvious reasons.
The influence and value of your Trade
There are a number of strategies you can use to appreciate the value of your trade and thus increase the Bitcoin or Ether value of your portfolio. It is important to disassociate yourself from the dollar value of your portfolio early on in your cryptocurrency trading career simply because the crypto market is so volatile you will end up pulling your hair out in frustration following the real dollar money value of your holdings. Once your funds have been converted into BTC and ETH they are completely in the crypto sphere. (Some crypto investors find it more appropriate to monitor the value of their portfolio in satoshi or gwei.) Certainly not limited to, but especially good for beginners, the most reliable way to increase your trading profits, and thus the overall value and health of your portfolio, is to buy into promising projects, hold them for 6 months to a year, and then reevaluate. This is called Long term holding and is the tactic that served Bitcoin HODLers quite well, from 2013 to the present day. Obviously, if something comes to light about the project that indicates a lengthy set back is likely, it is often better to cut your losses and sell. You are better off starting over and researching other projects. Also, you should set initial Price Points at which you first take out your original investment, and then later, at which you take out all your profits and exit the project. That should be after you believe the potential for growth has been exhausted for that particular project.
Another method of increasing the value of your trades is ICO flipping. This is the exact opposite of long term holding. This is a technique in which you aim for fast profits taking advantage of initial enthusiasm in the market that may double or triple the value of ICO projects when they first come to market. This method requires some experience using smaller exchanges like IDEX, on which project tokens can be bought and sold before listing on mainstream exchanges. “Tethering up” means to exchange tokens or coins for the USDT stable coin, the value of which is tethered to the US Dollar. If you learn, or know how to use, technical analysis, it is possible to predict when a market retreatment is likely by looking at the price movements of BTC. If you decide a market pull back is likely, you can tether up and maintain the dollar value of your portfolio in tether while other tokens and coins decrease in value. The you wait for an opportune moment to reenter the market.
Market Behavior in Different Time Periods
The main descriptors used for overall market sentiment are “Bull Market” and “Bear Market”. The former describes a market where people are buying on optimism. The latter describes a market where people are selling on pessimism. Fun (or maybe not) fact: The California grizzly bear was brought to extinction by the love of bear baiting as a sport in the mid 1800s. Bears were highly sought after for their intrinsic fighting qualities, and were forced into fighting bulls as Sunday morning entertainment for Californians. What has this got to do with trading and financial markets? The downward swipe of the bear’s paws gives a “Bear market” its name and the upward thrust of a Bull’s horns give the “Bull Market” its name. Most unfortunately for traders, the bear won over 80% of the bouts. During a Bull market, optimism can sometimes grow to be seemingly boundless, volume is rising, and prices are ascending. It can be a good idea to sell or rebalance your portfolio at such a time, especially if you have a particularly large position in one holding or another. This is especially applicable if you need to sell a large amount of a relatively low-volume holding, because you can then do so without dragging the price down by the large size of your own sell order.
Learn more on common behavioral patterns observed so far in the cryptocurrency space for different coins and ICO tokens.
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Lightning Network Will Likely Fail Due To Several Possible Reasons

ECONOMIC CASE IS ABSENT FOR MANY TRANSACTIONS
The median Bitcoin (BTC) fee is $14.41 currently. This has gone parabolic in the past few days. So, let’s use a number before this parabolic rise, which was $3.80. Using this number, opening and closing a Lightning Network (LN) channel means that you will pay $7.60 in fees. Most likely, the fee will be much higher for two reasons:
  1. BTC fees have been trending higher all year and will be higher by the time LN is ready
  2. When you are in the shoe store or restaurant, you will likely pay a higher fee so that you are not waiting there for one or more hours for confirmation.
Let’s say hypothetically that Visa or Paypal charges $1 per transaction. This means that Alice and Carol would need to do 8 or more LN transactions, otherwise it would be cheaper to use Visa or Paypal.
But it gets worse. Visa doesn’t charge the customer. To you, Visa and Cash are free. You would have no economic incentive to use BTC and LN.
Also, Visa does not charge $1 per transaction. They charge 3%, which is 60 cents on a $20 widget. Let’s say that merchants discount their widgets by 60 cents for non-Visa purchases, to pass the savings onto the customer. Nevertheless, no one is going to use BTC and LN to buy the widget unless 2 things happen:
  1. they buy more than 13 widgets from the same store ($7.60 divided by 60 cents)
  2. they know ahead of time that they will do this with that same store
This means that if you’re traveling, or want to tip content producers on the internet, you will likely not use BTC and LN. If you and your spouse want to try out a new restaurant, you will not use BTC and LN. If you buy shoes, you will not use BTC and LN.
ROAD BLOCKS FROM INSUFFICIENT FUNDS
Some argue that you do not need to open a channel to everyone, if there’s a route to that merchant. This article explains that if LN is a like a distributed mesh network, then another problem exists:
"third party needs to possess the necessary capital to process the transaction. If Alice and Bob do not have an open channel, and Alice wants to send Bob .5 BTC, they'll both need to be connected to a third party (or a series of 3rd parties). Say if Charles (the third party) only possesses .4 BTC in his respective payment channels with the other users, the transaction will not be able to go through that route. The longer the route, the more likely that a third party does not possess the requisite amount of BTC, thereby making it a useless connection.”
CENTRALIZATION
According to this visualization of LN on testnet, LN will be centralized around major hubs. It might be even more centralized than this visualization if the following are true:
  1. Users will want to connect to large hubs to minimize the number of times they need to open/close channels, which incur fees
  2. LN’s security and usability relies on 100% uptime of relaying parties
  3. Only large hubs with a lot of liquidity will be able to make money
  4. Hubs or intermediary nodes will need to be licensed as money transmitters, centralizing LN to exchanges and banks as large hubs
What will the impact be on censorship-resistance, trust-less and permission-less?
NEED TO BE LICENSED AS MONEY TRANSMITTER
Advocates for LN seem to talk a lot about the technology, but ignore the legalities.
FinCEN defines money transmitters. LN hubs and intermediary nodes seem to satisfy this definition.
Application of FinCEN's Regulations to Persons Administering, Exchanging, or Using Virtual Currencies
“…applicability of the regulations … to persons creating, obtaining, distributing, exchanging, accepting, or transmitting virtual currencies.”
“…an administrator or exchanger is an MSB under FinCEN's regulations, specifically, a money transmitter…”
"An administrator or exchanger that (1) accepts and transmits a convertible virtual currency or (2) buys or sells convertible virtual currency for any reason is a money transmitter under FinCEN's regulations…”
"FinCEN's regulations define the term "money transmitter" as a person that provides money transmission services, or any other person engaged in the transfer of funds. The term "money transmission services" means "the acceptance of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency from one person and the transmission of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency to another location or person by any means.””
"The definition of a money transmitter does not differentiate between real currencies and convertible virtual currencies.”
FinCEN’s regulations for IVTS:
"An “informal value transfer system” refers to any system, mechanism, or network of people that receives money for the purpose of making the funds or an equivalent value payable to a third party in another geographic location, whether or not in the same form.”
“…IVTS… must comply with all BSA registration, recordkeeping, reporting and AML program requirements.
“Money transmitting” occurs when funds are transferred on behalf of the public by any and all means including, but not limited to, transfers within the United States or to locations abroad…regulations require all money transmitting businesses…to register with FinCEN."
Mike Caldwell used to accept and mail bitcoins. Customers sent him bitcoins and he mailed physical bitcoins back or to a designated recipient. There is no exchange from one type of currency to another. FinCEN told him that he needed to be licensed as money transmitter, after which Caldwell stopped mailing out bitcoins.
ARGUMENTS AGAINST NEED FOR LICENSING
Some have argued that LN does not transfer BTC until the channel is closed on the blockchain. This is not a defence, since channels will close on the blockchain.
Some have argued that LN nodes do not take ownership of funds. Is this really true? Is this argument based on a technicality or hoping for a loophole? It seems intuitive that a good prosecutor can easily defeat this argument. Even if this loophole exists, can we count on the government to never close this loophole?
So, will LN hubs and intermediary nodes need to be licensed as money transmitters? If so, then Bob, who is the intermediary between Alice and Carol, will need a license. But Bob won’t have the money nor qualifications. Money transmitters need to pay $25,000 to $1 million, maintain capital levels and are subject to KYC/AML regulations1. In which case, LN will have mainly large hubs, run by financial firms, such as banks and exchanges.
Will the banks want this? Likely. Will they lobby the government to get it? Likely.
Some may be wondering about miners. FinCEN has declared that miners are not money transmitters:
https://coincenter.org/entry/aml-kyc-tokens :
"Subsequent administrative rulings clarified several remaining ambiguities: miners are not money transmitters…"
FinCEN Declares Bitcoin Miners, Investors Aren't Money Transmitters
Some argue that LN nodes will go through Tor and be anonymous. For this to work, will all of the nodes connecting to it, need to run Tor? If so, then how likely will this happen and will all of these people need to run Tor on every device (laptop, phone and tablet)? Furthermore, everyone of these people will be need to be sufficiently tech savvy to download, install and set up Tor. Will the common person be able to do this? Also, will law-abiding nodes, such as retailers or banks, risk their own livelihood by connecting to an illegal node? What is the likelihood of this?
Some argue that unlicensed LN hubs can run in foreign countries. Not true. According to FinCEN: "“Money transmitting” occurs when funds are…transfers within the United States or to locations abroad…” Also, foreign companies are not immune from the laws of other countries which have extradition agreements. The U.S. government has sued European banks over the LIBOR scandal. The U.S. government has charged foreign banks for money laundering and two of those banks pleaded guilty. Furthermore, most countries have similar laws. It is no coincidence that European exchanges comply with KYC/AML.
Will licensed, regulated LN hubs connect to LN nodes behind Tor or in foreign countries? Unlikely. Will Amazon or eBay connect to LN nodes behind Tor or in foreign countries? Unlikely. If you want to buy from Amazon, you’ll likely need to register yourself at a licensed, regulated LN hub, which means you’ll need to provide your identification photo.
Say goodbye to a censorship-resistant, trust-less and permission-less coin.
For a preview of what LN will probably look like, look at Coinbase or other large exchanges. It’s a centralized, regulated and censored hub. Coinbase allows users to send to each other off-chain. Coinbase provides user data to the IRS and disallows users from certain countries to sell BTC. You need to trust that no rogue employee in the exchange will steal your funds, or that a bank will not confiscate your funds as banks did in Cyprus. What if the government provides a list of users, who are late with their tax returns, to Coinbase and tells Coinbase to block those users from making transactions? You need Coinbase’s permission.
This would be the antithesis of why Satoshi created Bitcoin.
NEED TO REPORT TO IRS
The IRS has a definition for “third party settlement organization” and these need to report transactions to the IRS.
Though we do not know for sure yet, it can be argued that LN hubs satisfies this definition. If this is the case, who will be willing to be LN hubs, other than banks and exchanges?
To read about the discussion, go to:
Lightning Hubs Will Need To Report To IRS
COMPLEXITY
All cryptocurrencies are complicated for the common person. You may be tech savvy enough to find a secure wallet and use cryptocurrencies, but the masses are not as tech savvy as you.
LN adds a very complicated and convoluted layer to cryptocurrencies. It is bound to have bugs for years to come and it’s complicated to use. This article provides a good explanation of the complexity. Just from the screenshot of the app, the user now needs to learn additional terms and commands:
“On Chain”
“In Channels”
“In Limbo”
“Your Channel”
“Create Channel”
“CID”
“OPENING”
“PENDING-OPEN”
“Available to Receive”
“PENDING-FORCE-CLOSE”
There are also other things to learn, such as how funds need to be allocated to channels and time locks. Compare this to using your current wallet.
Recently, LN became even more complicated and convoluted. It needs a 3rd layer as well:
Scaling Bitcoin Might Require A Whole 'Nother Layer
How many additional steps does a user need to learn?
ALL COINS PLANNING OFF-CHAIN SCALING ARE AT RISK
Bitcoin Segwit, Litecoin, Vertcoin and possibly others (including Bitcoin Cash) are planning to implement LN or layer 2 scaling. Ethereum is planning to use Raiden Network, which is very similar to LN. If the above is true about LN, then the scaling roadmap for these coins is questionable at best, nullified at worst.
BLOCKSTREAM'S GAME PLAN IS ON TRACK
Blockstream employs several of the lead Bitcoin Core developers. Blockstream has said repeatedly that they want high fees. Quotes and source links can be found here.
Why is Blockstream so adamant on small blocks, high fees and off-chain scaling?
Small blocks, high fees and slow confirmations create demand for off-chain solutions, such as Liquid. Blockstream sells Liquid to exchanges to move Bitcoin quickly on a side-chain. LN will create liquidity hubs, such as exchanges, which will generate traffic and fees for exchanges. With this, exchanges will have a higher need for Liquid. This will be the main way that Blockstream will generate revenue for its investors, who invested $76 million. Otherwise, they can go bankrupt and die.
One of Blockstream’s investors/owners is AXA. AXA’s CEO and Chairman until 2016 was also the Chairman of Bilderberg Group. The Bilderberg Group is run by bankers and politicians (former prime ministers and nation leaders). According to GlobalResearch, Bilderberg Group wants “a One World Government (World Company) with a single, global marketplace…and financially regulated by one ‘World (Central) Bank’ using one global currency.” LN helps Bilderberg Group get one step closer to its goal.
Luke-Jr is one of the lead BTC developers in Core/Blockstream. Regulation of BTC is in-line with his beliefs. He is a big believer in the government, as he believes that the government should tax you and the “State has authority from God”. In fact, he has other radical beliefs as well:
So, having only large, regulated LN hubs is not a failure for Blockstream/Bilderberg. It’s a success. The title of this article should be changed to: "Lightning Will Fail Or Succeed, Depending On Whether You Are Satoshi Or Blockstream/Bilderberg".
SIGNIFICANT ADVANCEMENTS WITH ON-CHAIN SCALING
Meanwhile, some coins such as Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash are pushing ahead with on-chain scaling. Both are looking at Sharding.
Visa handles 2,000 transactions per second on average. Blockstream said that on-chain scaling will not work. The development teams for Bitcoin Cash have shown significant on-chain scaling:
1 GB block running on testnet demonstrates over 10,000 transactions per second:
"we are not going from 1MB to 1GB tomorrow — The purpose of going so high is to prove that it can be done — no second layer is necessary”
"Preliminary Findings Demonstrate Over 10,000 Transactions Per Second"
"Gigablock testnet initiative will likely be implemented first on Bitcoin Cash”
Peter Rizun, Andrew Stone -- 1 GB Block Tests -- Scaling Bitcoin Stanford At 13:55 in this video, Rizun said that he thinks that Visa level can be achieved with a 4-core/16GB machine with better implementations (modifying the code to take advantage of parallelization.)
Bitcoin Cash plans to fix malleability and enable layer 2 solutions:
The Future of “Bitcoin Cash:” An Interview with Bitcoin ABC lead developer Amaury Séchet:
"fixing malleability and enabling Layer 2 solutions will happen”
However, it is questionable if layer 2 will work or is needed.
GOING FORWARD
The four year scaling debate and in-fighting is what caused small blockers (Blockstream) to fork Bitcoin by adding Segwit and big blockers to fork Bitcoin into Bitcoin Cash. Read:
Bitcoin Divorce - Bitcoin [Legacy] vs Bitcoin Cash Explained
It will be interesting to see how they scale going forward.
Scaling will be instrumental in getting network effect and to be widely adopted as a currency. Whichever Coin Has The Most Network Effect Will Take All (Or Most) (BTC has little network effect, and it's shrinking.)
The ability to scale will be key to the long term success of any coin.
submitted by curt00 to btc [link] [comments]

Coinbase just revealed their new listing checklist, let's check how Nimiq does

https://listing.coinbase.com/policy#coinbase-mission-values
Open Financial System
Open financial system is defined as being available to everyone and not controlled by a single entity.
✔︎ Pretty easy
Innovation or Efficiency Gains
New or improved technology which helps solve a problem, creates a new market, addresses an unmet market need, or creates value for network participants.
✔︎ Again, pretty easy, Nimiq is bringing a huge leap forward in terms of accessibility and integration of cryptocurrencies.
Economic Freedom
A measure of how easy it is for members of a society to participate in the economy. The technology enables individuals to have more control over their own wealth and property, or the freedom to consume, produce, invest, or work as they choose.
✔︎ Basic requirement of any real cryptocurrency, easily fulfilled by Nimiq.
Equality of Opportunity
This technology is accessible to use by anyone with a smartphone or access to the internet. It contributes to the broader mission of building the on-ramps to Finance 2.0.
✔︎ Nimiq is the most accessible crypto on the market right now, you don't even have to install something to begin using it or mining it.
Decentralization
The network is public, decentralized, and enables trustless consensus.
〜 The architecture of Nimiq is decentralized however the hashrate is clearly not right now.
Security & Code
Assessment of engineering and product quality.
✔︎ Nimiq team has done everything it could to ensure the quality control of the code.
Source Code
Open-source code, well-documented peer-review, and testing by contributors separate from the initial development team on GitHub, etc.
〜 Of course Nimiq is open-source but the documentation is still weak, the good thing is that it's being redone.
Prototype
There is a working alpha or beta product on a testnet or mainnet.
✔︎ Well, the Nimiq Network is live.
Security & Code
Demonstrable record of responding to and improving the code after a disclosure of vulnerability, and a robust bug bounty program or third party security audit.
✔︎ Nimiq team has set a bug bounty program and has been very transparent on the issue of the 25th.
Team
Assessment of short-term operating expectations and decision making.
✔︎ You can even see them on video hehe.
Founders and Leadership
Able to articulate vision, strategy, use cases or drive developmental progress. Has a track record of demonstrable success or experience. If information is available, Coinbase will apply "know your client" standards to publicly visible founders or leaders.
✔︎ The profiles of the team are all known and easily checked.
Engineering
Assessment of the engineering team and their track record of setting and achieving deadlines.
✔︎ They released the product which is a damn good track record in a sector full of vaporwares.
Business & Operations
History of interacting with the community, setting a reasonable budget and managing funds, and achieving project milestones. Thoughtful cash management is a key driver of the project's long term viability.
✔︎ There has been some "lean" periods in terms of communication but overall the team has never stopped interacting with us. When it comes to cash management the dev team should be a model for everyone else with its last transparency report.
Specialized Knowledge and Key People
The project leadership is not highly centralized or dependent on a small number of key persons. Specialized knowledge in this field is not limited to a small group of people.
〜 Let's be honest: it is right now, that said the project protocol isn't even 6 months old.
Governance
Assessment of long-term operating expectations and decision making.
✔︎ Nimiq has a foundation.
Consensus Process
There is a structured process to propose and implement major updates to the code, or there is a system or voting process for conflict resolution.
✔︎ Well it's like Bitcoin, node operators decide whether they want or not to follow an update.
Future Development Funding
There is a plan or built-in mechanism for raising, rewarding, or allocating funds to future development, beyond the funds raised from the ICO or traditional investors.
✔︎ Yes, see the intended use of fund.
White Paper
Justifies the use case for a decentralized network and outlines project goals from a business and technology perspective. While a white paper is important for understanding the project, it is not a requirement.
〜 There is the "high level" whitepaper of the ICO however it doesn't really explain in detail how Nimiq works.
Scalability
Assessment of a network's potential barriers to scaling and ability to grow and handle user adoption.
✔︎ Like pretty much every project, that's what Robin is currently working on by the way.
Roadmap
Clear timeline with stages of development, reasonable project milestones, or built-in development incentives.
✔︎ We should have the roadmap soon™️.
Network Operating Costs
The barriers to scaling the network have been identified, or solutions have been proposed or discussed. The resource consumption costs for validators and miners are not the main deterrents to participation.
✔︎ Yes, the team has been considering second layer solutions like Lightning Network or Liquidity Network.
Practical Applications
There are examples of real-world implementation or future practical applications.
✔︎ The new Nimiq shop is a great example of it.
Type of Blockchain
The asset is a separate blockchain with a new architecture system and network, or it leverages an existing blockchain for synergies and network effects
✔︎ Both in fact, Nimiq is a whole new blockchain built from scratch in Javascript and Rust + it's using HTLC/atomic swap to interact with Ethereum.
Regulation
Can Coinbase legally offer this asset?
✔︎ I'm not a lawyer but I guess it can
US Securities Law
The asset is not classified as a security using Coinbase's Securities Law Framework.
〜 Hard to say, they have this checklist and the fact that some NIM were given against NET which were distributed through an ICO makes it kind of blurry
Compliance Obligations
The asset would not affect Coinbase or Coinbase's ability to meet compliance obligations, which include Compliance Obligations, Anti-Money Laundering (AML) program and obligations under government licenses in any jurisdiction (e.g. Money Transmitter Licenses).
✔︎ Conversion from NET to NIM went through a KYC specifically for that.
Integrity & Reputational Risk
Would listing the asset be inconsistent with Coinbase policy?
✔︎ I don't see why.
User Agreement
The asset, network, application or fundamental nature of the project does not constitute a Prohibited Business under Appendix 1 of the user Agreement.
✔︎ I read it and it's doesn't.
Liquidity Standards
How liquid is this asset?
〜 Weak liquidity right now.
Global Market Capitalization
How does the market capitalization compare to the total market capitalizations of other assets?
〜 Weak capitalization.
Asset Velocity
Trade velocity, or turnover, is a significant part of market capitalization. This is a measure of how easily the asset can be converted to another asset.
〜 Again, weak velocity.
Circulation
For service or work tokens, new supply is created through consensus protocols. If the supply is capped, then a material amount of the total tokens should be available to the public.
✔︎ It's available.
Global Distribution
Where is this asset available to trade?
✔︎ HitBTC/Tradesatoshi/LAtoken/BTC-alpha/Nimex.
Total # of Exchanges
The number of exchanges that support the asset.
✔︎ 5.
Geographic Distribution
The asset is not limited to a single geographic region and is available to trade on decentralized exchanges.
✔︎ It's tradable everywhere and I guess you can count Agoras as a DEX.
Fiat and Crypto Pairs
Fiat and crypto trading pairs exist.
〜 Fiat pairs don't.
Exchange Volume Distribution
If secondary markets exist, then volume should be relatively distributed across exchanges.
✔︎ It is.
Demand
What is driving demand for this asset and does it lead to stronger network effects?
✔︎ The Nimiq community I guess and of course it does.
Consumer Demand
Customer demand is carefully considered, however, any asset which is created from a fork, airdrop, or automated token distribution is subject to a separate set of criteria.
〜 It would be presumptuous to say there is a customer demand for Nimiq right now.
Developers and Contributors
Growing developer base and measured progress as defined by the number of repositories, commits, and contributors.
✔︎ Nimiq has already a flourishing developper base.
Community Activity
Dedicated forums are available where developers, supporters, users, and founders can interact and build a community and offer transparency into the project. The team provides regular updates or is responsive to feedback.
✔︎ Yes it has.
External Stakeholders
There are investments from venture firms or hedge funds which have experience working with crypto companies or projects. The project has corporate partnerships, joint ventures, or dedicated consortiums.
〜 It doesn't as far as I know.
Change in Market Capitalization
The market capitalization has grown after the network has activated, demonstrating increased demand for the asset after the project's launch.
〜 Sadly not.
Nodes
Growing # of nodes on the underlying blockchain. The project has a globally distributed node network, meaning operating nodes are not contained in a single country or geographic region.
✔︎ You can even check them on a map on https://miner.nimiq.com/
Transactions, Fees & Addresses
Growing # of transactions and fees paid over time. Growing # of asset or token holders, which is an indicator of asset distribution.
✔︎ Check the stats
Economic Incentives
Are the economic structures designed to incentivize all parties to act in the best interest of the network?
✔︎ It's a PoW coin so yes.
Type of Token
It is a service, work, or hybrid token. Tokens backed by fiat or other physical assets are categorized as US securities and will not be considered at this time.
✔︎ It's not backed by anything but the work done to generate them.
Token Utility
There is utility from obtaining, holding, participating, or spending the token. The team identifies a clear and compelling reason for the native digital asset to exist (i.e. the main purpose is not fundraising).
✔︎ Nimiq is a general payment protocol.
Inflation (Money Supply)
There is an algorithmically programmed inflation rate which incentivizes security and network effects. Or, if the total supply is capped, then a majority of the tokens should be available for trade when the network launches.
✔︎ You can check the inflation curve here.
Rewards and Penalties
There are mechanisms (such as transaction fees) which incentivize miners, validators, and other participants to exhibit 'good' behavior. Conversely, there are mechanisms which deter 'bad' behavior.
✔︎ Yes
Security
There is a focus on stringent security protocols and best practices to limit scams, hacks, and theft of funds.
✔︎ The smart-contract of the ICO was audited and they didn't lose the fund yet so I guess it's secure haha.
Participation Equality
Best efforts by the team to allow a fair distribution of tokens (i.e. setting initial individual purchase caps to limit the risk of small number of investors from taking a majority of the supply).
✔︎ The number of NIM distributed through NET is only 7% in any case.
Team Ownership
The ownership stake retained by the team is a minority stake. There should be a lock-up period and reasonable vesting schedule to ensure the team is economically incentivized to improve the network into the future.
✔︎ See the vesting schedule
Transparency
The team should be available and responsive to questions or feedback about the product, token sale, or use of funds across multiple forums.
✔︎ See the transparency report.
Total Supply The team should sell a fixed percentage of the total supply, and participants should know the percentage of total supply that their purchase represents, or have a clear understanding of the inflation rate.
✔︎ All informations are available freely online.
Ethics or Code of Conduct
White paper or project website should have an ethical or professional code of conduct.
✔︎ Check it here
Conclusion: 44 ✔︎ and 12 〜.
submitted by --Talleyrand-- to Nimiq [link] [comments]

Crypto and Security Token Exchange INX to Raise $130 Million in Landmark IPO

Crypto and Security Token Exchange INX to Raise $130 Million in Landmark IPO
https://preview.redd.it/w5xr4bzkvph31.png?width=700&format=png&auto=webp&s=e7275c55edd08eb682994fe588f1abd8c371fd0f
News by Coindesk: Marc Hochstein
INX Limited, a crypto exchange startup, plans to raise up to $129.5 million through an IPO, in the first security token sale registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
No, that’s not a typo for “ICO,” the initial coin offerings that tested the limits of securities law during the go-go days of 2017. IPO means IPO here: INX, which is domiciled in Gibraltar, filed a draft F-1 (the SEC’s prospectus form for foreign issuers) with the agency on Monday and will market the tokens to retail and institutional investors through the initial public offering.
As such, it’s a major milestone since to date, token sales have been unregistered. Some issuers confined their marketing to wealthy investors so they’d be exempt from the registration requirement and filed notices with the SEC. Most didn’t even bother to tell the regulators what they were up to, and over the last year, the agency has brought a slew of cases against ICO teams for illegally selling unregistered securities.
Further, INX’s sale would also be one of the very few full-fledged IPOs in the blockchain industry and almost certainly the largest. Last year, mining subscription company Argo Mining raised $32.5 million through an IPO on the London Stock Exchange.

One-stop shop

The target audience is largely institutional investors, even though like the INX token itself, crypto trading on the exchange will be available to the general public, provided they go through anti-money-laundering and know-your-customer screening.
“When fully operational, we expect to offer professional traders and institutional investors trading platforms with established practices common in other regulated financial services markets, such as customary trading, clearing, and settlement procedures, regulatory compliance, capital and liquidity reserves and operational transparency,” says the draft prospectus.
In this way, INX will be competing with a number of institutionally-focused, regulated trading platforms launching this year — although INX stands out in the breadth of digital assets it plans to list.
“Our vision is to establish two trading platforms and a security token that provide regulatory clarity to the blockchain asset industry. We plan to achieve this [in part] by differentiating between security and non-security blockchain asset classes and providing trading opportunities for each class,” says the prospectus, later adding:
“In the future, we intend to establish a platform for the trading of derivatives such as futures, options and swaps.”
This means the exchange will be in the same space as not only Overstock’s tZERO (security tokens) but also Coinbase Prime and Fidelity Digital Assets (spot cryptocurrencies) — and eventually Intercontinental Exchange’s Bakkt (derivatives).

Hybrid token

Although it is a security, INX’s token could also be described as a utility token, since holders will have the option of using it on the INX Exchange to pay transaction fees.
This is perhaps ironic since, during the ICO boom, many issuers argued that their tokens were not securities because they had a utility, such as the right to use a platform developed with proceeds from the sale.
At the same time, token investors will get a share of INX’s profits, though they won’t be equity holders.
Rather, they will stand in line ahead of shareholders to get repaid, in the event of a liquidation. In this way, the token is akin to preferred stock.
“It is the Company’s intention that the INX Token holders’ claim for breach of contract will be senior to the rights of the holders of the ordinary shares of the Company in liquidation,” the document says.
The securities will be represented as ERC-20 tokens on the ethereum blockchain.

Red tape

Since crypto assets are such a new and unprecedented phenomenon that does not map easily to old categories, several different regulatory agencies have claimed jurisdiction over different parts of the industry.
For INX, this has meant getting sign-off from multiple agencies. Before it can proceed with the token sale, INX still has to get the SEC to deem its prospectus “effective.”
The prospectus includes disclosures that are standard for publicly listed companies, but rare if not unheard-of in the shadowy world of crypto, such as the executives’ employment contracts.
That’s just for the fundraising. For the exchange to actually open for trading, several other approvals still must be obtained.
Since INX will be listing security tokens, it will have to first become a broker-dealer, which requires a separate registration with the SEC and acceptance into FINRA, a self-regulatory organization (SRO), and an alternative trading system (ATS), which requires filing additional forms with the SEC.
On top of securities-related approvals, to operate as a crypto exchange where investors can buy and sell bitcoin and the like, INX will need money transmitter licenses from the individual states where it does business.
Wall Street image via Shutterstock
submitted by GTE_IO to u/GTE_IO [link] [comments]

States put heat on Bitcoin. (WSJ - 6/26 - article cut & Paste for w/o Subscription)

By ROBIN SIDEL and ANDREW R. JOHNSON State regulators are warning virtual-currency exchanges and other companies that deal with bitcoin that they could be closed down if their activities run afoul of state money-transmission laws, according to people familiar with the matter.
According to people familiar with the situation, banking regulators in California, New York and Virginia in recent weeks have issued letters telling the companies that they need to follow the state rules or prove that the rules don't apply to them.
The warnings fall short of formal "cease and desist" orders, which would demand that the companies immediately stop engaging in their business, these people said.
Still, the moves show that state regulators have moved beyond merely scrutinizing virtual currencies and now are taking steps to prevent people and companies from using them for illegal activities. Federal regulators already are cracking down on virtual currencies.
Similar actions are expected from other states in coming weeks and months, according to people familiar with the matter. California, New York and Virginia are three of the 48 states that require the companies to obtain money-transmission licenses to operate. South Carolina and Montana don't have such rules.
The money-transmission rules vary among states, but most require detailed financial data, business strategy and information about the company's management. States also typically require companies to put up a bond that could run as high as several million dollars.
Bits and Pieces
Read about Bitcoin's evolution.
The actions aren't related to the announcement last week that Mt. Gox, the largest bitcoin trading exchange, has halted withdrawals of customer funds in U.S. dollars. The Tokyo company said it was making system improvements.
Unlike dollars or euros that are backed by a central bank, bitcoin users can create the units in a process called "mining." Users also can trade the currency on a number of exchanges or swap it privately.
The state actions come three months after federal regulators issued guidelines placing virtual-currency exchanges under the same comprehensive anti-money-laundering requirements as traditional money-transmission businesses such as Western Union Co. Since then, a handful of bitcoin exchanges have registered with the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
The California Department of Financial Institutions has issued at least three warnings to bitcoin-related companies in recent weeks, according to people familiar with the actions. One of the recipients is the Bitcoin Foundation, an industry-backed group that promotes the digital cash.
Patrick Murck, general counsel for the Bitcoin Foundation, said it is a nonprofit organization and doesn't engage in money transmission. The group is formulating its response to the letter it received from regulators last week.
A spokeswoman for the California banking department declined to comment on the warning letters, saying the communications are confidential and "the goal is safety and soundness and compliance with the laws that DFI enforces."
California is particularly important to the bitcoin community because many of the startup companies that are tied to the virtual currency are based there. California and New York are known for having stricter money-transmission laws than other states.
Bloomberg News Bitcoin supporter Peter Vessenes
"Bitcoin businesses are spending a lot of time and energy figuring out how to stay out of California," said Peter Vessenes, chief executive of CoinLab, a Bainbridge Island, Wash., company that has registered as a money-services business with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. CoinLab is waiting to launch any exchange-related services until it gets its "state licensing strategy sorted," said Mr. Vessenes, who also is chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation.
The New York Department of Financial Services issued a similar letter to BitInstant, a New York company that allows customers to buy and sell bitcoins. The company earlier this month alerted customers on its website that it wasn't accepting cash deposits "as we make steps to transition to our new website."
Charlie Shrem, chief executive of BitInstant, couldn't be reached for comment. The company has registered as a money-services business with federal regulators.
"Virtual currency firms inhabit an evolving and sometimes murky corner of the financial world," Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of New York's Department of Financial Services, said in an interview.
"The extent and nature of their operations morph constantly, so it's important for regulators to ask the hard questions and stay ahead of the curve in order to root out dangerous or illegal activity," he said.
In Virginia, a company called Tangible Cryptography suspended the purchase of the currency through its service called FastCash4Bitcoins after receiving a letter from state regulators who received a complaint that the company was operating as an unlicensed money transmitter, according to a notice on its website. Company representatives couldn't be reached for comment.
Tangible Cryptography said on its website that its activity is exempt from licensing requirements and that the commission's initial assessment contained factual errors.
"While we respond to the commission's notice, the prudent action is for the company to suspend all new transactions," the company said.
A spokesman for the Virginia Bureau of Financial Institutions declined to comment on whether it has issued similar notices to other companies.
Write to Robin Sidel at [email protected] and Andrew R. Johnson at [email protected]
A version of this article appeared June 26, 2013, on page C1 in the U.S. edition of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: States Put Heat on Bitcoin.
submitted by siamesefightingfish to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Cryptocurrency compliance attorney Adam S. Tracy explains the difference between Anti-Money Laundering (AML) v. Know-Your-Customer (KYC) requirements and its application in cryptocurrency ventures.

Transcribed from: https://tracyfirm.com/aml-requirements-cryptocurrency/
So there’s a great deal of confusion over AML, Anti-Money Laundering, and KYC, Know Your Customer, and I see a lot of people interchanging them and or assuming the same thing, and they’re not. AML is an overall program or policy to prevent the proceeds of criminal activities from flowing through money service businesses. And money service businesses is anything from a bank to the crypto space, a money transmitter, or a money remitter, which is what you see exchanges like coinbase or even cracking get at the state level. That state level license, which was originally was created for purpose of sending things like Western Union and money orders and things of that nature, is what triggers your money service business registration with FinCEN, which is the US Federal Government Official Crimes Network. And that’s where your AML policy requirements are triggered. So, AML is sort of the umbrella of requirements and regulatory requirements with respect to being a money service business.
KYC, or Know Your Customer, is really an element of AML, almost like a department. The biggest issue with KYC, which is really more pertinent for crypto currency based operation, is CIP, which is Customer Identification Procedures. These are simple things like collecting certain quantitative and qualitative information about a person. So we’re talking about basic information — address, name, phone number, tax ID, or passport number, something similar numeric that would be unique to that individual. That’s how you can meet your KYC burden. And it’s an ongoing burden because, not only do you have to collect and follow the CIP procedures when you on board a client, but you’re an ongoing requirement with respect to transactions and suspicious transactions — suspicious transactions being certain denominations, transactions with certain countries or places. And then also, there’s a list kept by OFAC, which is Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) List, which you have to consistently scrub your clients both, individual and corporate, against to make sure they’re not in the list, which is deemed to be known sponsors of money laundering, terrorism, and things of that nature. So, KYC from a cryptocurrency standpoint, whether it’s an exchange or even mining operations, where there is some transfer of FIAT currency to cryptocurrency and back, you really have a medium or a modicum of requirements from the KYC side. And even if you’re an exchange that doesn’t accept FIAT currency, where you’re just trading cryptocurrencies, right, you still ideally would have to register as a money service business so that AML and KYC would trigger in.
Now at the AML level, there’s sort of a broader policy — a lot of it’s very expansive probably not entirely relevant to most crypto ventures — but it does require some ongoing policing at a higher level to understand where the sources and uses of funds that are coming through your company. And it also requires the filing of SARS, or Suspicious Activity Reports, if you’re within the United States, which refers to certain transactions or patterns of transactions that, for instance, are meant to be below the five thousand dollar threshold, or a series of transactions that are broken up into smaller amounts to evade detection coming from certain locales and the like. And it’s a very broad thing. On my website TracyFirm.com or Bitcoin-Lawyer.org, you’ll see a sample AML KYC policy that I’ve come up with and I’ve used with some successful crypto ventures in the past. Take a look at it. It doesn’t hurt to have it. Most of the time you’re following your KYC procedures, if you simply are identifying who your people are. So, it’s really not a terribly difficult burden to meet. And there’s also a lot of great third parties that’ll do it. So that’s my take — KYC vs. AML. There is a difference, and you need to take note of it in either event. So check out my website. I’ve got those up there. Feel free to use them.
Questions? Contact Adam S. Tracy here.
A former competitive rugby player, serial entrepreneur, trader and attorney, Adam S. Tracy offers over 15 years of progressive legal and compliance experience in the areas of corporate, commodities, cryptocurrency, litigation, payments and securities law. Adam’s transactional experience ranges from initial public offerings, mergers and acquisitions to initial coin offerings, representing the pure startup to NASDAQ-listed entities. As an early Bitcoin adapter, Adam Tracy has been deeply involved in the growth of cryptocurrency and offers a unique, proprietary approach to representing crypto-clients. Adam resides in Chicago, IL with his six dogs/cats, which he is fairly certain is illegal in the town in which he lives. Primary website: http://www.tracyfirm.com Twitter: https://twitter.com/TracyFirm Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVOa8Iy_RIkmRPwuQliPKfw Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamtracy/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thetracyfirm/ Instagram: @adamtracyattorney Telegram: @adam_tracy Skype: @adamtracyesq Email me: [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected])
submitted by bitattorney to u/bitattorney [link] [comments]

Lightning Network Will Likely Fail Due To Several Possible Reasons

ECONOMIC CASE IS ABSENT FOR MANY TRANSACTIONS
The median Bitcoin (BTC) fee is $14.41 currently. This has gone parabolic in the past few days. So, let’s use a number before this parabolic rise, which was $3.80. Using this number, opening and closing a Lightning Network (LN) channel means that you will pay $7.60 in fees. Most likely, the fee will be much higher for two reasons:
  1. BTC fees have been trending higher all year and will be higher by the time LN is ready
  2. When you are in the shoe store or restaurant, you will likely pay a higher fee so that you are not waiting there for one or more hours for confirmation.
Let’s say hypothetically that Visa or Paypal charges $1 per transaction. This means that Alice and Carol would need to do 8 or more LN transactions, otherwise it would be cheaper to use Visa or Paypal.
But it gets worse. Visa doesn’t charge the customer. To you, Visa and Cash are free. You would have no economic incentive to use BTC and LN.
Also, Visa does not charge $1 per transaction. They charge 3%, which is 60 cents on a $20 widget. Let’s say that merchants discount their widgets by 60 cents for non-Visa purchases, to pass the savings onto the customer. Nevertheless, no one is going to use BTC and LN to buy the widget unless 2 things happen:
  1. they buy more than 13 widgets from the same store ($7.60 divided by 60 cents)
  2. they know ahead of time that they will do this with that same store
This means that if you’re traveling, or want to tip content producers on the internet, you will likely not use BTC and LN. If you and your spouse want to try out a new restaurant, you will not use BTC and LN. If you buy shoes, you will not use BTC and LN.
ROAD BLOCKS FROM INSUFFICIENT FUNDS
Some argue that you do not need to open a channel to everyone, if there’s a route to that merchant. This article explains that if LN is like a distributed mesh network, then another problem exists:
"third party needs to possess the necessary capital to process the transaction. If Alice and Bob do not have an open channel, and Alice wants to send Bob .5 BTC, they'll both need to be connected to a third party (or a series of 3rd parties). Say if Charles (the third party) only possesses .4 BTC in his respective payment channels with the other users, the transaction will not be able to go through that route. The longer the route, the more likely that a third party does not possess the requisite amount of BTC, thereby making it a useless connection.”
CENTRALIZATION
According to this visualization of LN on testnet, LN will be centralized around major hubs. It might be even more centralized than this visualization if the following are true:
  1. Users will want to connect to large hubs to minimize the number of times they need to open/close channels, which incur fees
  2. LN’s security and usability relies on 100% uptime of relaying parties
  3. Only large hubs with a lot of liquidity will be able to make money
  4. Hubs or intermediary nodes will need to be licensed as money transmitters, centralizing LN to exchanges and banks as large hubs
What will the impact be on censorship-resistance, trust-less and permission-less?
NEED TO BE LICENSED AS MONEY TRANSMITTER
Advocates for LN seem to talk a lot about the technology, but ignore the legalities.
FinCEN defines money transmitters. LN hubs and intermediary nodes seem to satisfy this definition.
Application of FinCEN's Regulations to Persons Administering, Exchanging, or Using Virtual Currencies
“…applicability of the regulations … to persons creating, obtaining, distributing, exchanging, accepting, or transmitting virtual currencies.”
“…an administrator or exchanger is an MSB under FinCEN's regulations, specifically, a money transmitter…”
"An administrator or exchanger that (1) accepts and transmits a convertible virtual currency or (2) buys or sells convertible virtual currency for any reason is a money transmitter under FinCEN's regulations…”
"FinCEN's regulations define the term "money transmitter" as a person that provides money transmission services, or any other person engaged in the transfer of funds. The term "money transmission services" means "the acceptance of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency from one person and the transmission of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency to another location or person by any means.””
"The definition of a money transmitter does not differentiate between real currencies and convertible virtual currencies.”
FinCEN’s regulations for IVTS:
"An “informal value transfer system” refers to any system, mechanism, or network of people that receives money for the purpose of making the funds or an equivalent value payable to a third party in another geographic location, whether or not in the same form.”
“…IVTS… must comply with all BSA registration, recordkeeping, reporting and AML program requirements.
“Money transmitting” occurs when funds are transferred on behalf of the public by any and all means including, but not limited to, transfers within the United States or to locations abroad…regulations require all money transmitting businesses…to register with FinCEN."
Mike Caldwell used to accept and mail bitcoins. Customers sent him bitcoins and he mailed physical bitcoins back or to a designated recipient. There is no exchange from one type of currency to another. FinCEN told him that he needed to be licensed as money transmitter, after which Caldwell stopped mailing out bitcoins.
ARGUMENTS AGAINST NEED FOR LICENSING
Some have argued that LN does not transfer BTC until the channel is closed on the blockchain. This is not a defence, since channels will close on the blockchain.
Some have argued that LN nodes do not take ownership of funds. Is this really true? Is this argument based on a technicality or hoping for a loophole? It seems intuitive that a good prosecutor can easily defeat this argument. Even if this loophole exists, can we count on the government to never close this loophole?
So, will LN hubs and intermediary nodes need to be licensed as money transmitters? If so, then Bob, who is the intermediary between Alice and Carol, will need a license. But Bob won’t have the money nor qualifications. Money transmitters need to pay $25,000 to $1 million, maintain capital levels and are subject to KYC/AML regulations1. In which case, LN will have mainly large hubs, run by financial firms, such as banks and exchanges.
Will the banks want this? Likely. Will they lobby the government to get it? Likely.
Some may be wondering about miners. FinCEN has declared that miners are not money transmitters:
https://coincenter.org/entry/aml-kyc-tokens :
"Subsequent administrative rulings clarified several remaining ambiguities: miners are not money transmitters…"
FinCEN Declares Bitcoin Miners, Investors Aren't Money Transmitters
Some argue that LN nodes will go through Tor and be anonymous. For this to work, will all of the nodes connecting to it, need to run Tor? If so, then how likely will this happen and will all of these people need to run Tor on every device (laptop, phone and tablet)? Furthermore, everyone of these people will be need to be sufficiently tech savvy to download, install and set up Tor. Will the common person be able to do this? Also, will law-abiding nodes, such as retailers or banks, risk their own livelihood by connecting to an illegal node? What is the likelihood of this?
Some argue that unlicensed LN hubs can run in foreign countries. Not true. According to FinCEN: "“Money transmitting” occurs when funds are…transfers within the United States or to locations abroad…” Also, foreign companies are not immune from the laws of other countries which have extradition agreements. The U.S. government has sued European banks over the LIBOR scandal. The U.S. government has charged foreign banks for money laundering and two of those banks pleaded guilty. Furthermore, most countries have similar laws. It is no coincidence that European exchanges comply with KYC/AML.
Will licensed, regulated LN hubs connect to LN nodes behind Tor or in foreign countries? Unlikely. Will Amazon or eBay connect to LN nodes behind Tor or in foreign countries? Unlikely. If you want to buy from Amazon, you’ll likely need to register yourself at a licensed, regulated LN hub, which means you’ll need to provide your identification photo.
Say goodbye to a censorship-resistant, trust-less and permission-less coin.
For a preview of what LN will probably look like, look at Coinbase or other large exchanges. It’s a centralized, regulated and censored hub. Coinbase allows users to send to each other off-chain. Coinbase provides user data to the IRS and disallows users from certain countries to sell BTC. You need to trust that no rogue employee in the exchange will steal your funds, or that a bank will not confiscate your funds as banks did in Cyprus. What if the government provides a list of users, who are late with their tax returns, to Coinbase and tells Coinbase to block those users from making transactions? You need Coinbase’s permission.
This would be the antithesis of why Satoshi created Bitcoin.
NEED TO REPORT TO IRS
The IRS has a definition for “third party settlement organization” and these need to report transactions to the IRS.
Though we do not know for sure yet, it can be argued that LN hubs satisfies this definition. If this is the case, who will be willing to be LN hubs, other than banks and exchanges?
To read about the discussion, go to:
Lightning Hubs Will Need To Report To IRS
COMPLEXITY
All cryptocurrencies are complicated for the common person. You may be tech savvy enough to find a secure wallet and use cryptocurrencies, but the masses are not as tech savvy as you.
LN adds a very complicated and convoluted layer to cryptocurrencies. It is bound to have bugs for years to come and it’s complicated to use. This article provides a good explanation of the complexity. Just from the screenshot of the app, the user now needs to learn additional terms and commands:
“On Chain”
“In Channels”
“In Limbo”
“Your Channel”
“Create Channel”
“CID”
“OPENING”
“PENDING-OPEN”
“Available to Receive”
“PENDING-FORCE-CLOSE”
There are also other things to learn, such as how funds need to be allocated to channels and time locks. Compare this to using your current wallet.
Recently, LN became even more complicated and convoluted. It needs a 3rd layer as well:
Scaling Bitcoin Might Require A Whole 'Nother Layer
How many additional steps does a user need to learn?
ALL COINS PLANNING OFF-CHAIN SCALING ARE AT RISK
Bitcoin Segwit, Litecoin, Vertcoin and possibly others (including Bitcoin Cash) are planning to implement LN or layer 2 scaling. Ethereum is planning to use Raiden Network, which is very similar to LN. If the above is true about LN, then the scaling roadmap for these coins is questionable at best, nullified at worst.
BLOCKSTREAM'S GAME PLAN IS ON TRACK
Blockstream employs several of the lead Bitcoin Core developers. Blockstream has said repeatedly that they want high fees. Quotes and source links can be found here.
Why is Blockstream so adamant on small blocks, high fees and off-chain scaling?
Small blocks, high fees and slow confirmations create demand for off-chain solutions, such as Liquid. Blockstream sells Liquid to exchanges to move Bitcoin quickly on a side-chain. LN will create liquidity hubs, such as exchanges, which will generate traffic and fees for exchanges. With this, exchanges will have a higher need for Liquid. This will be the main way that Blockstream will generate revenue for its investors, who invested $76 million. Otherwise, they can go bankrupt and die.
One of Blockstream’s investors/owners is AXA. AXA’s CEO and Chairman until 2016 was also the Chairman of Bilderberg Group. The Bilderberg Group is run by bankers and politicians (former prime ministers and nation leaders). According to GlobalResearch, Bilderberg Group wants “a One World Government (World Company) with a single, global marketplace…and financially regulated by one ‘World (Central) Bank’ using one global currency.” LN helps Bilderberg Group get one step closer to its goal.
Luke-Jr is one of the lead BTC developers in Core/Blockstream. Regulation of BTC is in-line with his beliefs. He is a big believer in the government, as he believes that the government should tax you and the “State has authority from God”. In fact, he has other radical beliefs as well:
So, having only large, regulated LN hubs is not a failure for Blockstream/Bilderberg. It’s a success. The title of this article should be changed to: "Lightning Will Fail Or Succeed, Depending On Whether You Are Satoshi Or Blockstream/Bilderberg".
SIGNIFICANT ADVANCEMENTS WITH ON-CHAIN SCALING
Meanwhile, some coins such as Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash are pushing ahead with on-chain scaling. Both are looking at Sharding.
Visa handles 2,000 transactions per second on average. Blockstream said that on-chain scaling will not work. The development teams for Bitcoin Cash have shown significant on-chain scaling:
1 GB block running on testnet demonstrates over 10,000 transactions per second:
"we are not going from 1MB to 1GB tomorrow — The purpose of going so high is to prove that it can be done — no second layer is necessary”
"Preliminary Findings Demonstrate Over 10,000 Transactions Per Second"
"Gigablock testnet initiative will likely be implemented first on Bitcoin Cash”
Peter Rizun, Andrew Stone -- 1 GB Block Tests -- Scaling Bitcoin Stanford At 13:55 in this video, Rizun said that he thinks that Visa level can be achieved with a 4-core/16GB machine with better implementations (modifying the code to take advantage of parallelization.)
Bitcoin Cash plans to fix malleability and enable layer 2 solutions:
The Future of “Bitcoin Cash:” An Interview with Bitcoin ABC lead developer Amaury Séchet:
"fixing malleability and enabling Layer 2 solutions will happen”
However, it is questionable if layer 2 will work or is needed.
GOING FORWARD
The four year scaling debate and in-fighting is what caused small blockers (Blockstream) to fork Bitcoin by adding Segwit and big blockers to fork Bitcoin into Bitcoin Cash. Read:
Bitcoin Divorce - Bitcoin [Legacy] vs Bitcoin Cash Explained
It will be interesting to see how they scale going forward.
Scaling will be instrumental in getting network effect and to be widely adopted as a currency. Whichever Coin Has The Most Network Effect Will Take All (Or Most) (BTC has little network effect, and it's shrinking.)
The ability to scale will be key to the long term success of any coin.
submitted by curt00 to Bitcoincash [link] [comments]

Even by I.R.S. standards, the recent ruling on bitcoin flirts with nonsensical non-logic in a way that is truly shocking to an outsider. Govt officials have called bitcoin "digital currency" thousands of times, not once have they called it "digital property".

Really astonishing. For months, including the Senate hearing and the Treasury Department's own published documents on bitcoin always refer to it as a "virtual currency," "digital currency," or my favorite "convertible virtual currency." Don't take my word for it. Search through publicly available federal government documents that mention or address bitcoin in any way. It's always discussed as a convertible electronic currency, which it is, not as property.
If the government views bitcoin as property - for taxation purposes the same as selling ice cream sandwiches out of an ice cream truck - why was this not a topic broached during the Senate hearing? Why did former Fed chairman Ben Bernanke in his letter refer to "virtual currency" several times, and "virtual property" not once. His successor, Janet Yellen, has had an equally sane approach toward bitcoin.
Even by the sometimes byzantine logic of modern tax agencies, the IRS is simply wrong.
If mining Bitcoins is self employment, so is jerking off to porn.
If Bitcoin is primarily "property" and not currency, then why the focus on KYC/AML compliance? It's not money according to the IRS. And why the need for money transmitter licenses? And why is New York State trying to regulate Bitcoin if it's just property? Lawsky's job is over before it even begins, if this nonsensical IRS classification is not challenged and revised.
Please don't tip me, I don't want the burden of having your property thrown at me unsolicited over these inter web tubes. Thank you.
submitted by CryptoDonDraper to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Understanding USA Crypto/Cash Exchanges

Let this post serve to inform those who buy/sell Dogecoin [from other individuals], in order to protect yourselves as well as others.
Update: Title says USA, but someone asked about UK. I don't live there, but laws are meant to be read. Added UK section.
USA Section
The USA has been very helpful in regards to understanding the rising Crypto currency markets, and has provided updated guidances in regards to money exchanges, as well as mining. It's tough to cover all the points, but I'll try to make a few.
Common Questions:
What happens if I'm not "trading", but "gifting" my "friend" $10,0000?
Nothing. And everything. You see, when it comes to the "guidance", it really is just that: A guidance. Where it comes to hurt you is when the FBI knocks on your door, asking you why you transmitted $10,000 to a known terrorist. Ok, that example is a bit extreme, but the fact stays that the guidance is there to protect you until subsequent formal laws are put in place.
So I can trade $999.99 worth of Dogecoin in a day?
You can trade up to $1000 in a 24 hour period. This mean $1000, not a penny more. You'll give yourself a headache trying to keep it at exactly "$999.99".
How does this guidance and current law effect Dogecoin?
All virtual currencies are effected by this law, and does not "nail down" or target any one specific virtual currency.
What if I don't mine Dogecoin, but have bought some and want to use them for goods/services, what then?
You are then a "user" of Dogecoin, and are subject to all regular laws and limitations. Essentially, you can use the coin for all goods/services that are of a legal nature. Use it to buy coffee, hire someone to mow your lawn, or give out freely as you like.
What's the deal with USA taxes?
As it stands, no clear precedents have been set, and though the IRS is aware of the massive amount of earnings many Bitcoin'ers have, this is the first year that users are making a substantial sum of money from crytpo-currencies. Because of this, dealing with taxes has been a much heated debate. Link 1Link 2
More then likely, we'll be getting guidances later in the year in order better understand what to claim and how to claim it. From what I've seen (do NOT take this as legal advice), many users are claiming any gains as Short-term gains on their taxes. Link #2 above is a link to a user claiming to be a tax attorney, and is worth a read (it's LOOONG).
So the people buying $1k+ for doge are actually breaking the law?
No. The buyer is considered a "user" as part of the guidance: "A user is a person that obtains virtual currency to purchase goods or services.". A seller is listed in the guidance as "An exchanger is a person engaged as a business in the exchange of virtual currency for real currency...[etc]".
A good example of this is when you go to an international airport, and go to the currency exchange station. The station must be licensed in order to perform the transaction, but the "buyer" (you) does not need to be licensed.
UK Section
Note that all the requirements below must be met in order to NOT have to register as a Money Service Business; It's not that you are not allowed to perform services if you do not meet all the requirements, but that you must register if you want to perform such actions legally. Since I do not live in the UK and additionally am not aware of any guidances as related to virtual currency, I cannot faithfully interpret the laws as they pertain to Dogecoin.
  • You cannot make more then £64,000 a year total in exchange services
  • Turnover (anything you gain after losses are calculated) cannot be more then 5% of your total annual turnover
  • Currency exchange worth more than 1,000 euros must be limited to one per customer - This is both for one single large transaction and multiple small transactions to a single individual
  • Your primary business cannot be solely performing monetary transactions, it must be secondary to your main business. This is hard to interpret, so let's put it this way: You can't just exchange money as a business. You would need to sell lemons at your lemon stand, and do money exchange on the side. It's very hard to do this without seeming like a front for a money laundering service though.
  • You cannot perform an exchange for just anyone: They have to be your customer. For example, if you go to a private bank, they cannot exchange money for you unless you open an account with them (just an example). (Note: This is a very weird portion of the law.)
After reading and interpreting the current UK laws to the best of my understanding, all I can say is that until the UK provides guidance for cryptocurrency, be VERY CAUTIOUS about performing ANY transactions, to the point where if I was living in the UK, I would not try selling any crypto with a 10ft (3M) pole. Buying seems fine though.
Common questions:
Note: Please check the USA section prior to asking a question. Since many countries have not pushed official laws, many of the general principles are the same between countries when it comes to money exchange services.
No questions at this time
I'll try to answer more questions as they come along, as well as glean any better answers from comments below.
submitted by GuideZ to dogecoin [link] [comments]

You have 1-2 hours each day to work on BitCoin investments. What do you work on?

Bitcoin dabbler here ...
The majority of my Bitcoin gains came from loans on BLC but what's left of those non-defaulted profits were cashed out years ago to pay for useless things like mortgages and groceries.
I dabbled in LBC trading but I found I needed to keep to close an eye on it to respond quickly to buyers but too much time wasted waiting 20 mins for a reply. Plus I primarily relied on my Western Union app through my bank which didn't work 10% - 20% of the time. Too many horror stories with PayPal so I try to keep big money transactions away from there.
Add to it states/feds cracking down on LBC'ers for not having expensive money transmitter licenses.
I've invested into Cloud Mining enough to make minimum profits and enough to learn it's a scam. I don't have to cojones to invest $1k - $2k into an antminer.
I have a stable full time 40+ hours /week dayjob. I have a life outside of work as well pretty much only giving me late evenings to work on the latest offerings from /beermoney but I want to step up and make more than a few measly bucks a night.
Where should a guy like me start investing his time and coin?
submitted by Kicker774 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Taking bitcoin is too damn hard

I'm starting a new company that is going to make games (such as CastleChaosGame.com, which is my new one) and I'm planning on doing some mining. So I needed a bank account , so I came here and asked where I should get one at. I found out IACFU is supporting of the bitcoin community and I applied for an account.
So as it turns out, to simply take bitcoin and convert it to USD I need the following:
Seriously? I want to take payments for a dollar for micro purchases. This is crazy. Is there any way to avoid this hassle?
submitted by radique to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Subreddit Stats: CryptoCurrency top posts from 2016-03-26 to 2017-03-25 06:16 PDT

Period: 363.66 days
Submissions Comments
Total 1000 5933
Rate (per day) 2.75 16.28
Unique Redditors 374 1711
Combined Score 21623 13093

Top Submitters' Top Submissions

  1. 1930 points, 78 submissions: Coinosphere
    1. Bitcoin expected to become part of everyday life in the Caribbean within eighteen months as banks abandon the region (70 points, 11 comments)
    2. Marijuana now legal in eight more US States while vendors get more bitcoin options (66 points, 0 comments)
    3. Bitfinex hacked, halts trading, deposits, and withdrawals - 119,756 BTC lost so far with no insurance (60 points, 5 comments)
    4. Hacker holds San Francisco railway to ransom, demands 100 bitcoins (59 points, 8 comments)
    5. South Korea plans national digital currency using a Blockchain (52 points, 6 comments)
    6. Santander says ‘Yes to bitcoin’ in Brazil (50 points, 3 comments)
    7. Ukraine to be the first government to integrate blockchain technology, targets corruption (48 points, 1 comment)
    8. 50% of all consumers would use bank alternatives, including bitcoin, as Bank irrelevance grows (46 points, 0 comments)
    9. Core Bitcoin developer uncovers possible plot by ChainAnchor to force AML onto Bitcoin (46 points, 9 comments)
    10. Seafile replaces Paypal with bitcoin after Paypal privacy shenanigans (46 points, 0 comments)
  2. 930 points, 39 submissions: helmsk
    1. Countdown: Bitcoin Will Be a Legal Method of Payment in Japan in Two Months (88 points, 2 comments)
    2. Bitcoin Transactions Declared VAT-Exempt in Norway (85 points, 3 comments)
    3. Zeronet Wants to Replace the Dark Web by Marrying Bitcoin to Bittorrent Over Tor (46 points, 3 comments)
    4. Central Bank of Nigeria Says ‘We Can’t Stop Bitcoin’ (44 points, 6 comments)
    5. New Image Hosting Service Pays Thousands of Uploaders in Bitcoin (43 points, 4 comments)
    6. Coinbase Exits as Hawaii Requires Bitcoin Companies to Hold Fiat Reserves (39 points, 7 comments)
    7. Europe Lays Out Roadmap to Restrict Payments in Cash and Cryptocurrencies (35 points, 1 comment)
    8. One of These 5 Hyperinflating Economies Could Adopt Bitcoin in 2017 (32 points, 6 comments)
    9. Polish Bitcoin Adoption Escalating with Strong Ecosystem (30 points, 1 comment)
    10. A Look At Bitcoin Bubbles, When Will the Next One Be? (25 points, 6 comments)
  3. 846 points, 36 submissions: e-ok
    1. Europe Will Have Power to Ban Blockchain Tech in January 2018 (51 points, 20 comments)
    2. Bitcoin Projects on Github Surpass 10,000 (47 points, 3 comments)
    3. Italy's Largest Taxi Fleet Accepts Bitcoin (46 points, 2 comments)
    4. Bitcoin Symbol Left Out of Unicode's Latest Version (42 points, 4 comments)
    5. Malta's Prime Minister Says Europe Should Become the Bitcoin Continent (40 points, 3 comments)
    6. SEC Rejects Rule Change for Bitcoin ETF (32 points, 0 comments)
    7. Bitcoin Price Poised for a Breakout, Technical Analysis Shows (31 points, 5 comments)
    8. ECB to EU: Tighter Regulations, Less Anonymity on Digital Currencies (29 points, 8 comments)
    9. OpenBazaar 2.0 Now Running on Tor Network (27 points, 0 comments)
    10. Trump's Trade War With China Could Boost Chinese Bitcoin Demand (27 points, 8 comments)
  4. 801 points, 39 submissions: Posternut
    1. ‘Decentralized Reddit’ Steemit Awards $1.3 Million to Users (48 points, 15 comments)
    2. IBM Invests $200M Into Blockchain and IoT Research at German Headquarters (45 points, 2 comments)
    3. Bitcoin Price Rally Rages on, Market Cap Passes $10Bn USD (34 points, 0 comments)
    4. Apple Tells Jaxx To Remove Dashpay (31 points, 32 comments)
    5. Secret Chinese Bitcoin Mines Are Mining Millions (31 points, 4 comments)
    6. A Decentralized World Has No Kings (29 points, 0 comments)
    7. China's Social Security Fund to Use Blockchain Technology (28 points, 3 comments)
    8. FBI Director: 'There's No Such Thing As Absolute Privacy’ (28 points, 4 comments)
    9. Kim Dotcom’s Mega & Bitcoin ‘Baby’ Will Be Born This January (28 points, 5 comments)
    10. BitPay Launches Loadable Visa (27 points, 0 comments)
  5. 784 points, 35 submissions: CryptoCurrencyNews
    1. Libertarian City Liberstad in Norway is Moving Forward Using Bitcoin as Primary Currency (67 points, 8 comments)
    2. What Is the Flippening? (53 points, 16 comments)
    3. Only 807 People Have Declared Bitcoin for Tax Purposes According to IRS (40 points, 12 comments)
    4. Storj to Migrate Decentralized Storage Service to Ethereum Blockchain (40 points, 5 comments)
    5. Darknet Marketplace AlphaBay Will Enable Ethereum Payments Soon (35 points, 14 comments)
    6. The Trump Administration is Buying Into Blockchain Tech (35 points, 5 comments)
    7. Coinbase Receives Approval To Trade Ether and Litecoin in New York (32 points, 2 comments)
    8. Bitcoin's Price Just Finished its First Month Above $1,000 (29 points, 1 comment)
    9. Chinese Central Bank Requiring Extreme Customer Verifications at Exchanges (29 points, 5 comments)
    10. The EU is Now Targeting “Unpermissioned” Blockchains (29 points, 10 comments)
  6. 633 points, 35 submissions: twigwam
    1. Creator of the JavaScript language and early Internet pioneer plans blockchain-based digital ad platform on the Ethereum network (40 points, 18 comments)
    2. NYTimes on Ethereum... (37 points, 15 comments)
    3. The Disaster that is Bitcoin (35 points, 20 comments)
    4. Bitcoin is a Highly Centralized Network, Says Harvard Researcher - CCN (31 points, 14 comments)
    5. Gavin: Ethereum will outgrow Bitcoin at this pace. (28 points, 9 comments)
    6. The Amount of Self-Proclaimed Ethereum Experts Surpasses 3,000 On LinkedIn (25 points, 8 comments)
    7. [The Economist] Ethereum: One blockchain to rule them all? - talk with Vitalik Buterin (25 points, 0 comments)
    8. How the blockchain will radically transform the economy | Bettina Warburg (22 points, 9 comments)
    9. Vitalik Buterin to Debut Ethereum Scaling Paper at Devcon - CoinDesk (22 points, 7 comments)
    10. [Coinbase] "is convinced that public blockchains and cryptocurrencies would eventually produce greater innovation, just as the open Internet has changed society more than private intranets have." - Forbes in-depth article (20 points, 0 comments)
  7. 522 points, 20 submissions: olivercarding
    1. Bitcoin Activity in India Has Doubled Since the Banknote Ban (58 points, 0 comments)
    2. Apple Approves Steem, Lisk and Digicash for App Store; Rejects Ethereum Classic (57 points, 10 comments)
    3. Bitcoin Has Many Fans at Amazon According to Purse CEO Andrew Lee (50 points, 5 comments)
    4. $5 Worth of Bitcoin Gets You Internet ‘For Life’ on the Darknet (36 points, 7 comments)
    5. 4 Monero Features That Enable Better Privacy Than Bitcoin (35 points, 0 comments)
    6. Bitcoin is Eating the Entire Online Gambling Industry (31 points, 2 comments)
    7. Report Estimates There are More Than 10 Million Bitcoin Holders Worldwide (28 points, 7 comments)
    8. Bitcoin Dominance Index Approaches 90% as Ethereum and Steem Decline (25 points, 4 comments)
    9. Singapore’s Status Wants to Bring Ethereum to Every Mobile Device (25 points, 0 comments)
    10. Slock.It Says 'The DAO's Journey is Over' (23 points, 0 comments)
  8. 513 points, 21 submissions: _CapR_
    1. Polls suggest the Pirate Party who support Bitcoins as legal tender may win Saturday's election in Iceland (48 points, 3 comments)
    2. ALERT: Apple just approved two more scam wallets, please help reporting them - (/Bitcoin x-post) (41 points, 0 comments)
    3. War On Cash Intensifies: Citibank To Stop Accepting Cash At Some Branches (40 points, 3 comments)
    4. Russian Authorities: Bitcoin Poses No Threat, Won’t Be Banned (36 points, 5 comments)
    5. The Govt. Realized Bitcoin Could Not Be Shut down, Says U.S. Federal Prosecutor - CryptoCoinsNews (36 points, 7 comments)
    6. Saudis, China dump treasuries; foreign banks liquidate a record $346 billion in US paper (33 points, 2 comments)
    7. IRS Fail: Treasury Audit Says it Can't Manage Virtual Currencies - Bitcoin News (32 points, 2 comments)
    8. Bitcoin Is Real Money, Judge Rules in J.P. Morgan Hack (31 points, 0 comments)
    9. Massive scams like OneCoin harm all of crypto & can increase bad regs - help me make a letter on GitHub to send to enforcement agencies (29 points, 9 comments)
    10. Deploy is the fastest and easiest way to create an OpenBazaar store that will stay up 24/7, auto-update, and operate securely. (27 points, 0 comments)
  9. 365 points, 20 submissions: jholmes91
    1. Monero Testing $10, Releases Official Wallet (39 points, 1 comment)
    2. Litecoin Creator: I think there's a General Confusion that SegWit Signaling is a Vote (28 points, 2 comments)
    3. Open-source Cold Storage Guide for Bitcoin in the Works! (27 points, 1 comment)
    4. One in Five Users May Abandon Bitcoin Because of Privacy Concerns (24 points, 19 comments)
    5. Jaxx Wallet Set to Integrate DASH This Week (23 points, 4 comments)
    6. IRS Summons Coinbase, but the Bitcoin Exchange Fights Back (22 points, 2 comments)
    7. New OpenBazaar Release Provides Altcoin Integration (21 points, 12 comments)
    8. Russia's Ministry of Finance Wants to Legalize Bitcoin (21 points, 0 comments)
    9. Monero Appreciation Intensifies on Darknet Adoption (20 points, 7 comments)
    10. Monero Attracts Mainstream Media After ZCash Decline & Controversial Launch (18 points, 0 comments)
  10. 355 points, 17 submissions: coin_news
    1. Major Korean Bank to launch bitcoin-backed remittance service (40 points, 1 comment)
    2. Experts say Scotland should adopt blockchain technology, or risk losing tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions in earnings (32 points, 1 comment)
    3. Tumblers and unregulated wallet providers are the target of global cybercrime conference (30 points, 8 comments)
    4. Gemini launches daily bitcoin auctions to provide better price discovery (27 points, 0 comments)
    5. U.S. Department of Homeland Security funds four blockchain companies developing new cyber security technology (27 points, 1 comment)
    6. Deloitte boosts blockchain adoption by installing a bitcoin ATM in their Toronto office (25 points, 0 comments)
    7. DC attorneys suggest Federal Reserve actively embrace and utilize blockchain technology (24 points, 2 comments)
    8. House of Lords told Bank of England's digital currency is 'some way off' (24 points, 1 comment)
    9. 75% of corporate treasurers in Africa and Latin America interested in blockchain solutions (21 points, 0 comments)
    10. Public blockchains gaining acceptance at Bank of Japan’s Payment and Settlement Forum (17 points, 0 comments)

Top Commenters

  1. nugymmer (404 points, 207 comments)
  2. trancephorm (289 points, 67 comments)
  3. SeemedGood (132 points, 53 comments)
  4. indiamikezulu (91 points, 55 comments)
  5. kingofthejaffacakes (88 points, 22 comments)
  6. jwinterm (87 points, 32 comments)
  7. antiprosynthesis (83 points, 43 comments)
  8. nagalim (80 points, 28 comments)
  9. phor2zero (77 points, 13 comments)
  10. humbrie (76 points, 33 comments)
  11. RawlzSec (75 points, 17 comments)
  12. thegauntlet (73 points, 23 comments)
  13. MasterMined710 (70 points, 44 comments)
  14. wolffang1 (68 points, 39 comments)
  15. marenkar (62 points, 24 comments)
  16. shbour (58 points, 26 comments)
  17. twigwam (57 points, 33 comments)
  18. sn0wr4in (56 points, 14 comments)
  19. strips_of_serengeti (56 points, 14 comments)
  20. travis- (55 points, 16 comments)
  21. ASG3 (54 points, 36 comments)
  22. isrly_eder (54 points, 12 comments)
  23. Explodicle (53 points, 29 comments)
  24. _CapR_ (53 points, 25 comments)
  25. autotldr (52 points, 28 comments)

Top Submissions

  1. Employee mined bitcoins on Federal Reserve servers for two years by _bnc (106 points, 15 comments)
  2. Talking to people about CryptoCurrencies be like... by discombobulatedone (91 points, 11 comments)
  3. Bitcoin falls below 70% of total cryptocurrency market cap for the first time by SatoshiRoshi (90 points, 62 comments)
  4. Countdown: Bitcoin Will Be a Legal Method of Payment in Japan in Two Months by helmsk (88 points, 2 comments)
  5. Monero successfully hardforks! by jml390 (85 points, 33 comments)
  6. Bitcoin Transactions Declared VAT-Exempt in Norway by helmsk (85 points, 3 comments)
  7. Kraken launches Monero trading by jml390 (82 points, 3 comments)
  8. Poloniex is Secure. We're Good. by Poloniex (79 points, 52 comments)
  9. EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous by -bnc (70 points, 26 comments)
  10. Bitcoin expected to become part of everyday life in the Caribbean within eighteen months as banks abandon the region by Coinosphere (70 points, 11 comments)

Top Comments

  1. 44 points: boppie's comment in EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous
  2. 40 points: ihaphleas's comment in Bitcoin is not private, only decentralised. What is the most private, secure, and decentralised crypto currency?
  3. 32 points: FatherSigma's comment in How many people here know about Monero (XMR)?
  4. 32 points: adidasimwearing's comment in Best Alternative to Bitcoin
  5. 31 points: TH3J4CK4L's comment in Which coins are currently superior to Bitcoin as a currency / store of money?
  6. 26 points: eleitl's comment in Europe Will Have Power to Ban Blockchain Tech in January 2018
  7. 26 points: trancephorm's comment in Zcash trusted setup disaster. The number of parties used should have much larger. It is sad that they never properly responded to this concern.
  8. 25 points: phor2zero's comment in Which coins are currently superior to Bitcoin as a currency / store of money?
  9. 24 points: pasttense's comment in EU Parliament states Virtual Currencies cannot be anonymous
  10. 24 points: trancephorm's comment in Roger Ver Selling his Bitcoin for Dash to Protest Core Censorship (Today's Tony Podcast)
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MTA Not Applicable to Bitcoin in Pennsylvania. In a memo titled “Money Transmitter Act Guidance for Virtual Currency Businesses,” the Pennsylvania DoBS clarified that the Money Transmitter Act (MTA) did not apply to cryptocurrency exchanges.. The clarification focused on the precise definitions encompassed in the MTA, which focused on what constitutes money and when is an MTA license required. The DoBS has issued a statement concerning the state’s Money Transmitter Act (MTA) and guidance for virtual currency businesses explaining that bitcoin and other digital assets are not considered legal tender in the U.S. In fact, the Pennsylvania guidelines emphasize that thus far, there is no state in the country that has “designated virtual currency as legal tender.” Furthermore, the ... Money Transmitter Licensing System modeled on the National Mortgage Licensing System. Part II explains the creation and infrastructure of bitcoin.9 Part III explores regulation of bitcoin at the federal and state level.'0 Part IV examines the potential of a National Money Transmitter Licensing System." Part V concludes with a brief overview.12 II. THE CREATION OF BITColN A. The Origins ... New Hampshire Exempts Bitcoin From Money Transmitter Regulation. The pro-bitcoin legislation trend continues. This month New Hampshire passed legislation that exempts persons using virtual currency from registering as money transmitters. Specifically, the lawamends existing RSA 399-G, which deals with licensing of money transmitters as follows. The law amends RSA 399-G:1, XVI(b), which defines ... Exchanging or dealing in currency, including virtual currencies like Bitcoin; Handling money transfers; Any business that does one or more of these tasks is likely to be considered a money transmitter, and therefore, requires a license. It is helpful to check with the specific state’s licensing or financial department to see what the definition of a money transmitter is and the process to ...

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