Blockchain and crypto world is full of innovations, assumptions and sometimes wildly wrong predictions. If you’ve missed the top stories of this week, this post provides a comprehensive look at the top crypto news that made headlines. A lot has happened in the cryptocurrency and blockchain world. Here is a quick round-up of this week’s related stories you may have missed:
Bitwala Launches Crypto Bank In Germany
Bitwala, a global blockchain-based payment service provider based in Berlin, Germany has launched a crypto banking service in the country. The company has also claimed that it the first ever company to do so. Bitwala was founded by Jörg von Minckwitz, Jan Goslicki, and Benjamin P. Jones in October 2015.
Users now will be able to maintain both Bitcoin and Euro deposits in one place with the security and accessibility of a German bank account. Bitwala accounts offer a debit card and a built-in bitcoin wallet with combined cryptocurrency trading. All Euro deposits up to €100,000 are shielded by the German Deposit Guarantee Scheme (DGS) because the account is regulated in Germany by the BaFin (German financial regulator).
Crypto VC Funding Deals are Falling Apart due to Bear Market
2018 has been a rough year for the cryptocurrency industry filled with scams, hacks, crackdown, falling prices and much more. But going into 2018, there was huge excitement and many thought that this year would be the year that cryptocurrencies go mainstream. Some say that this is the inevitable price correction that was necessary, while others say that crypto currencies are rallying towards an inevitable zero valuation.
Even though 2018 was a rough year for crypto, lately, snippets of positive news have been coming out of the space. Despite the fall in price, the number of users have increased twice as compared to the start of this year. And despite the initial crack down, more and more countries like Japan and Thailand are opening up to crypto, greatly improving the investment landscape. Technical issues like scalability are expected to get improvement soon with the inflow of blockchain developers.
Coinbase Launches Crypto-To-Crypto Conversion Service
Coinbase, a cryptocurrency exchange platform headquartered in San Francisco, California has launched its new crypto-to-crypto conversion service. The conversion service is available on Coinbase.com and in the iOS and Android apps. The conversion completes immediately and at a cheaper cost than if done via two different transactions.
The company will slowly release the facility to transform cryptocurrencies to customers in all 34 countries in which Coinbase gives regional payment path. Coinbase is also planning to gather client feedback along the way and proceed to repeat on the feature over time. Its product teams are examining intensely about new policies to democratize the best of cryptocurrency, and the capability to efficiently transform one asset to another.
French Government Rejects Crypto-Friendly Tax Amendments
France’s parliament has rejected various crypto-friendly tax amendments directed at reducing taxes for cryptocurrency traders and consumers. Amidst rebuffed amendments are those regarding capital profits and losses and crypto tax exclusions. Not only this, the amendment described in Article 16a to simply tax gains on cryptocurrencies when they are traded and switched to a bank account, rather than taxing them based on their interpretations transformed into fiat on crypto exchanges, was also rejected.
Right now, the crypto assets are taxed at 36.2% in France. That’s gained from regular income tax along with a universal benefaction. A design persists for a 30% tax rate for cryptocurrencies but it was rejected by the France Government. These amendments would have addressed the tax method for buying/selling in cryptocurrencies more profitable. The ruling arrives a week after two French legislators published a report supporting the investment of hundreds of millions of state money in blockchain technology.
Western Union Partners with Ripple
Western Union, an American financial services company has partnered with Ripple Labs to test blockchain payments and it is also thinking about adopting cryptocurrencies. During the interview given to Reuters Plus, the president of Western Union Global Money Transfer Odilon Almeida admitted that the company has been assessing whether it should accept cryptocurrency or not. The president also told that Western Union is examining potential methods to develop their services utilizing the Blockchain technology.
The president also elaborated that there are two factors of the cryptocurrency. The first one is the digital currency itself and the second one is the technology behind the cryptocurrency known as blockchain. Blockchain provides storing and transferring data about businesses in an adequate and efficient system. There are many inherent applications for the financial services sector, and WU is investing in discovering those that perfectly suitable for their platform. Lately, WU partnered with Ripple Labs to examine whether transferring payments by blockchain was quicker and less expensive. The tests are open-ended.
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