Bitcoin Picks: US Judge Rules Bitcoin as Money, Google Analytics Styled Blockchain Unveiled

Several developments transpired this week in the world of Bitcoin, including the ruling by US Judge ruling that Bitcoin is

dcSeveral developments have transpired this week in the world of Bitcoin, including the ruling by US judge that Bitcoin is money – meanwhile, China’s big 3 crypto exchanges proposed an open letter to the NYDFS.

Huobi, BTC China and OKCoin Ask Lawsky to Water Down BitLicense Proposal

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The heads of China’s 3 biggest crypto exchanges penned an open letter to Benjamin Lawsky, Superintendent of the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS), explaining their concerns and recommended changes for his Bitlicense proposal.

Since released, the proposal has come under increasing fire from many within the Bitcoin community as being far too restrictive. Some argue that the proposed regulations would stifle the development of digital currency.

The joint letter further demonstrates the close working relationship between Huobi, BTC China and OKCoin, which together, reportedly dominate with over 60% of the world’s Bitcoin trading volume. Having collectively experienced the PBOC’s crackdown, their heads jointly withdrew from the Beijing Bitcoin Summit and acceded to PBOC requests to remove margin and short trading. Shortly thereafter, they took similar steps in their international expansion toward more accommodating shores, opening offshore bank accounts, launching USD-based trading and restoring previous services.

You can read the full article HERE.

Judge in Faiella Case: “Bitcoin is money”

US District Judge, Jed Rakoff, rejected a plea by Robert Faiella facing charges of money laundering and operating an unlicensed money transmission business along with Charlie Shrem, that Bitcoin should not be considered money. Faiella therefore reportedly contended that the charges of operating an unlicensed money transmission business should be dropped.

The indication is that he only asked for one of the two charges to be dropped, although one wonders why the same argument can’t be made for money laundering.

Judge Rakoff rejected Faiella’s claim, saying that bitcoin “Clearly qualifies as ‘money’ or ‘funds,’” under dictionary definitions, a view backed by historical interpretation of the law. “Bitcoin can be easily purchased in exchange for ordinary currency, acts as a denominator of value, and is used to conduct financial transactions.”

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You can read the full article HERE.

Australian Taxation Office Decides Bitcoin Is Not a Currency

After months of deliberation, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has ruled that for taxation purposes, Bitcoin is neither money nor foreign currency. The ruling is similar to that of the IRS in the US, with the implications outlined below.

As a general rule, transacted bitcoins need to be evaluated in terms of their fair market value in Australian dollars. This can be determined for example, by their traded price on a “reputable exchange” at the relevant time of their evaluation.

Investing in and disposing of bitcoins, for non-commercial activities, is subject to capital gains/losses. Also, disposing of bitcoins worth over $10,000 by using them to purchase goods and services may fall under the realm of capital gains.

You can read the full article HERE.

A Google Analytics for the Blockchain? BlockCorp Launches BlockTrail

BlockCorp has launched a Bitcoin analytics platform, BlockTrail. In competing in and blockr, the platform is intended as more than a blockchain explorer. It will target institutional and governmental clients, offering deep insights into transactions and network data.

Although bitcoin transactions are technically anonymous, trends can still be drawn and associations can be made. For example, certain addresses can be identified with mining activity or gambling transactions. Said CEO Boaz Bechar: “We could imagine a day in the future where people will evaluate where the money has come from.”

Although much data is readily available through blockchain exploration today, such a sophisticated level of information is not easily accessible to those not running their own bitcoin servers or engaging in complex data crunching operations. In a sense, it can be viewed as a Google Analytics for the blockchain.

You can read the full article HERE.

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