Indian Central Bank Makes a Case Before Supreme Court Against Allowing Crypto Use

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Indian Central Bank Makes a Case Before Supreme Court Against Allowing Crypto Use

India’s central bank told the country’s supreme court on Friday that “allowing dealings in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin would encourage illegal transactions.” Other crypto petitions being heard include one asking the government to “take emergency steps to restrain the sale and purchase of illegal cryptocurrencies.”

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

RBI’s Argument

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the country’s central bank, appeared before the supreme court Friday to defend its position regarding cryptocurrencies. RBI issued a circular on April 6 banning financial institutions under its control from providing services to crypto companies.

According to the Economic Times, the central bank told the court:

Allowing dealings in cryptocurrencies like bitcoins would encourage illegal transactions and it has already issued a circular prohibiting use of these virtual currencies.

Indian Central Bank Makes a Case Before Supreme Court Against Allowing Crypto UseRBI explained that crypto is “a stateless digital currency” that operates independently of a central bank such as itself, thereby “rendering it immune from government interference,” the news outlet noted.

The Financial Express elaborated that the central bank believes “it is necessary to regulate the bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to check illegal transactions which will impact the international flow of funds.” Senior counsel Shyam Divan, appearing for RBI, reiterated that the central bank has a particular stance and other departments may have other positions.

Petitions Being Heard

Petitions against the RBI crypto banking ban are not the only ones that the supreme court is hearing. The Economic Times described:

Some petitions challenged the use of virtual currencies and alleged that they posed grave dangers to the traditional economy and they also sought framing of guidelines to regulate them … They also sought a direction for the Centre to take emergency steps to restrain the sale and purchase of illegal cryptocurrencies.

Indian Central Bank Makes a Case Before Supreme Court Against Allowing Crypto UseThe Hindu pointed to one particular petition, filed by father and son Siddharth Dalmia and Vijay Pal Dalmia. “Mr. Dalmia, in his plea, has sought a direction to the Centre to take steps to restrain sale and purchase of illegal cryptocurrencies like bitcoins, which were being traded openly for ‘illegal activities’ like funding terrorism and insurgency,” the publication wrote.

The supreme court already heard the duo’s initial petition in November last year and subsequently issued notices to various government departments including RBI. The central bank responded at the time that it had warned people against the usage and risks associated with crypto. However, the Dalmias were not happy with RBI’s reply and filed a new petition, pointing out the inadequate action by the central bank.

At the hearing on Friday, the supreme court gave the government until September 11 to respond to all petitions.

What do you think of RBI’s view and action? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and RBI.


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Altcoins Are Dying

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Altcoins Are Dying

Anyone unacquainted with the cryptocurrency market might assume, casually reading the price of bitcoin in their morning paper, that the past seven days have been good for investors. BTC is up 18% in a week and is now hovering around the $7,400 mark. By any reckoning, that’s good going. But bitcoin’s recent show of strength belies turmoil within the crypto markets. Many altcoins aren’t just down in BTC terms: they’re dying a slow death by 1,000 red wicks.

Also read: Big-Name Insurers Stepping Up Their Crypto Game

Alts Are Submerged in a Bloodbath

Altcoins Are DyingIt’s been a mixed week for cryptocurrency investors. While BTC has been on fire, altcoins have been withering and dying, with lower lows, lower trade volume, and little by way of hope for their increasingly desperate bagholders. Telegram trading groups have been filled with pink wojaks and rekt memes as traditional support levels have fallen and price floors have been shattered. The weekly charts, in which gains and losses can be easily distorted by singular events, do not prevent a true picture of the state of altcoins right now. Zooming out to a monthly view provides a clearer picture. In addition to BTC, stellar and cardano – two assets shortlisted for inclusion on Coinbase – are in the green. Virtually every other asset has been subjected to deep, double-digit cuts.

Bitcoin’s dominance now stands at around 45%, the highest it has been since April. Part of its resurgence can be attributed to anticipation of impending SEC approval for an ETF, against a backdrop of increased institutional adoption. It figures that when bitcoin rallies, the rest of the market will suffer. While this fact can account for some of the slippage of the past few days, it does not explain the decline that virtually all crypto assets have suffered since the start of the year. BTC is down 63% from its all-time high, a figure which seems relatively benign when compared to the losses of other major cryptocurrencies.

Altcoins Are Dying
Most altcoins have posted major losses over the past month.

Smart Money is Rejecting Dumb Coins

Ripple and tron are down 88% from their ATH, cardano down 87%, and dash down 85%. The mania of January, when the entire market was convinced that their anointed altcoin was heading to the moon and staying there, has long since subsided. At the time, it was suggested by certain publications including this one that many of those investing in high supply coins may not fully understand concepts such as digital scarcity. Investors were fixated on the price per coin, rather than the value of the coin when adjusted for total circulating supply.

Altcoins Are Dying
The fate of dentacoin, a cryptocurrency for the dental industry, encapsulates the madness of January and subsequent decline that has characterized the altcoin market.

The subsequent downfall of altcoins that were mainstream media darlings at the start of the year, ripple, iota, and tron among them, can be attributed, in part, to novice investors getting scared off once the bear market kicked in with a vengeance. The resurgence of bitcoin in recent weeks, and the inability of altcoins to rally with it, owes something to rookie investors who got burned staying away, while smart money that was previously watching from the sidelines has begun to enter. These entities weren’t about to buy BTC when it was trading at an all-time high, but they’ll take a look now, having missed the boat the first time around. None of them, it seems, are interested in altcoins however, despite the fact that many are trading at a 5x discount. Institutional investors may be cautious, but they’re not foolish.

Do you think altcoins such as ripple and iota will ever surpass their ATH when the crypto market recovers? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Coincodex, and Pixabay.


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Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

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Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Mass, mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies might take a route few original cadres of developers and enthusiasts imagined — major payment processing, plastic debit cards. They’re incredibly handy for those wishing to use crypto while merchant adoption works itself out. Here are five such cards to consider: Wirex, Bitpay, Cryptopay, Xapo, and Shift.  

Also read: World Cup Goes Crypto!

5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Significant strains of the broader crypto community (strident veterans of an ideological bent) chafe at cryptocurrency debit cards. They do in large part because such cards are in bed with sworn enemies, legacy banking: Visa, Mastercard. Indeed, it is the height of irony the very institutions crypto was designed to thwart are arguably crypto’s most popular onboarding forms.

Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Wirex: A well known company, Wirex has a solid customer base. Along with virtual products, it offers a pin card. It also is notorious for fees, and they add up. And while no company is ever guaranteed to stay solvent, something to consider is shelf life (they tend to come and go). Wirex seems well poised for the longer term: Spring of last year it received confidence funding in the low millions from SBI Group, a prominent Japanese financial player. It has nearly one million customers spread out through most countries, with about a billion dollars in transaction volume last year. This year they’ve added litecoin, and they basically pioneered contactless debit cards in the space. The regular fees are pretty similar to other cards, hovering around 3% for international transactions, $2.50 for withdrawals, $17 to purchase a physical card.

For most everyone else, crypto’s slow merchant adoption is a giant pain in the ass. No matter how much one loves crypto and its potential, people need food, clothing, tchotkes. And, no, the fact your brother has a hat store, or the fact that random pizza parlor down the street accepts crypto, are not immediate solutions. A person can only have so many hats and eat so much of your brother’s greasy pizza.

Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Bitpay: Another well regarded provider is Bitpay. Its card is accepted the globe over, though it’s only available to US residents. No chip and pin, so verification is needed. Simple KYC, AML identification is mando, so all one needs is a government issued ID, street address, and Social Security number. The card is available in all US states. It’s loaded through a separate wallet client, prepaid. They use Visa, and for around 10 bucks USD a physical card will be sent along. Outside the US, a 3% fee is placed on all currency conversions (along with $3 for any outside the US withdrawals). Withdrawals in the US vary from bank to bank in terms of fees. Using it is a snap, very convenient. Withdrawal limits are generous.

Crypto debit cards, then, are a splitting the baby, kissing your sister kind of way to advance money’s future while still being able to enjoy life’s material pleasures. Done right, crypto debit schemes go anywhere major payment providers, such as Visa and Mastercard, are accepted. At the very least, they’re a nice hedge.

Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Cryptopay: Like Wirex, they offer virtual and physical cards. It is available around the globe. It can also be a little fee laden with load fees and maintenance fees, etc. It’s, of course, a Bitcoin debit card. Its selling feature is lack of personal verification. They might require more if limits are increased, however, above a couple thousand dollars. The card is right around $15, withdrawals are $2.5, and they charge 3% on international transactions.

Scouring the known crypto debit world, those presented are by no means exhaustive. Such cards are designed to help anyone inclined to get started. There are many others, as the market sees them popping up all the time. If these don’t live up to your standards, there are, again, plenty others.

Xapo: Xapo is most everywhere, and has a solid reputation among enthusiasts. It too was an earlier mover in the space. No chip and pin standard, though it’s offered. The cost of the card is roughly $20, and it carries an annual fee. Like most other cards, so long as users stay under about $2,500 in withdrawal limits, fees are relatively tame.

Bitcoin (Almost) Everywhere: 5 Crypto Debit Cards Worth Checking Out

Shift: Easily connects to your Coinbase account, relatively low fees. Available only in 45 states around the US, Coinbase is limited to certain countries as well. Shift position themselves as “the first US Bitcoin debit card”. The card costs a reasonable $10 to produce and has no ongoing fees. There is of course the standard 3% international transaction fee and $2.5 flat ATM withdrawal fee.

Disclaimer: Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support these products/services. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the mentioned company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

What bitcoin debit card do you use? Let us know in the comments section below. 


Images via Pixabay.


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