UK Tax Crack Down On Cryptocurrency Investors

The UK tax man is planning to crack down on investors who fail to declare profits from cryptocurrency on their self-assessment returns.

HM Revenue & Customs has revealed guidance is on the way for investors and their advisers.

The focus will be on ‘exchange tokens’ or cryptoassets like Bitcoin and Ethereum and how to treat any profits or gains for tax filings due on January 31, 2019.

The filings cover the huge peak in the cryptocurrency market in December last year when the price of Bitcoin soared to nearly $20,000, pulling up the price of most other leading tokens to record levels at the same time.

HMRC also warned that further guidance will follow in early 2019 for businesses that will cover topics such as tax for mining cryptocurrency and how to deal with cryptoassets in a hard fork for capital gains tax.

STO ban in China

The Chinese state bank is continuing to wage war with cryptocurrencies with a ban on businesses offering security tokens.

An STO is an alternative cryptocurrency funding option for businesses outside the normal private equity and venture capital routes.

The People’s Bank of China deputy governor Pan Gongsheng said: “The STO business that has surfaced recently is still essentially an illegal financial activity in China.

“Virtual money has become an accomplice to all kinds of illegal and criminal activities. Most of the financing operations conducted through ICOs in China were suspected of being illegal fundraising, pyramid sales schemes and other financial fraud.”

China has already shut down cryptocurrency exchanges and banned initial coin offerings (ICOs) in a bid to control the market.

Opera wallet

Internet browser Opera is testing a digital wallet for managing cryptocurrency on Android smartphones and tablets.

Crypto Wallet is a feature only available on a private beta that users must sign up to.

Based on the Ethereum blockchain, the wallet also offers collectibles as well as storage and will integrate with any decentralised app (Dapp) running on Ethereum.

Opera hopes users will access the wallet for spending cryptocurrency with retailers.

“The Opera wallet keeps a high level of security and gives you full control of your funds and collectible keys as they are all stored on your smartphone. The wallet also uses Android’s secure system lock, which makes transactions on the blockchain easier as you don’t require any additional PIN codes or passwords,” says Opera.

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