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bitcoin legislation

Whither Scotcoin

bitcoin legislation Cryptocurrency a scam?

There have been quite a few gyrations in the Bitcoin market especially since China put the mockers on ICOs. This was then followed by Jamie Dimon – he of JPMorgan fame – saying Bitcoin was a scam. Yet today, one of the doyens of the London Gold market  – Sharps Pixley – has said they will accept Bitcoin for purchases.

Legislation surrounding Bitcoin & Digital Currency

Let’s just look at both of these. The Chinese are quite rightly saying we don’t want people to lose money through fraudulent or overhyped ICO offerings. They are also saying, if you are going to put money into stocks and shares, you have to be identifiable, so if you want to do this with crypto currencies, you will have to be identifiable as well. Personally, I don’t see why people would run away from Bitcoin because of these two eminently sensible announcements. In fact, they should enhance crypto currencies in general and Bitcoin in particular. Rather than an anonymous investment in something you don’t understand, where the principals may disappear with your cash, you can invest with confidence knowing who the other people are beside you. This is precisely why Scotcoin will be entirely AML and KYC compliant. The other thing to bear in mind is that – officially officially – nothing has been set in stone in China. There are “elections” coming up in October, and it is entirely possible that OFFICIALLY officially after these things might change.

Jamie Dimon is in my view being a bit naughty. He says “ It’s a scam”. But he also says, hey it will collapse, but maybe not until it reaches $100,000. So… is that a buy recommendation? Goldman Sachs don’t appear to have doubts – they say serious investors MUST hold some crypto currencies, if only because the growth in value has outpaced everything else by a mile. And he is after all in the business of getting his investors the best deal. Traders and market makers earn money by selling high and buying cheap, and he just may have created the last, best buying opportunity for Bitcoin. The present bounce up back above $4000 is in my view a trigger.

The Sharps Pixley announcement is way up there as far as a tipping point goes. Gold might trade $22 trillion a year but Bitcoin is already around $1 trillion. And that’s from a market not yet fully nine years old.

I have a view which is entirely personal. Bitcoin isn’t going to become the currency of choice for buying coffees and pizza. Apart from anything else the cost even after the recent fall is around £1.50 per transaction. That will only increase as its value rises. What Bitcoin MAY become is something like gold, a store of value and wealth. That leaves the field for “ currency” wide open, and Scotcoin is targeting that use. We may be “Scot” but that is not pejorative or limiting. We have holders in more than 40 countries. In fact, taking into account the diaspora of successful Scots worldwide, we all might just be on to a good thing.

If you want to help us spread the world and fund our on-going activities, go to https://scotcoinproject.com.

The Scotcoin Pizza… Mark this date!

Scotcoin PizzaAt our MeetUp in Dundee last night, intrepid blockchain enthusiasts joined our cryptocurrency development team for a momentous occasion.  We now have 250 regular guests at these events and we discuss all manner of things blockchain, Q&A for newbies, and it’s a chance to meet the team behind the Scotcoin Project and find out more about it.

The bitcoin pizza and its value today

Back on 22 May 2010,  an extremely fortunate pizza vendor sold two pizzas, for 10,000 Bitcoins. Nowadays, those 10,000 Bitcoins are worth $34,500,000! 

Ten thousand coins were then worth about $40 (£30).  A British user agreed to buy the pizza for this pizza-munching developer, and even at the time the buyer got a good deal out of it: The Brit paid only $25 (£19) for the two pizzas to be delivered to the developer.  The day has gone down in history as being World Bitcoin Pizza Day and so we’d like to record the first ever pizzas sold in Scotcoin too.

The Scotcoin Pizza and how Scotcoin is valued

Leading Italian restaurant Don Michelle in Perth Road, Dundee supplied the pizzas and are now accepting Scotcoin for pizzas at just 1,000 Scotcoin per pizza.  Restaurateur Patric Lochi “I am delighted to be involved with the Scotcoin Project. Quite apart from the iconic Bitcoin Pizza Purchase, we have just started using Scotcoin for our on-line offerings – Just Eat here we come!”

The details for posterity:

Date:                      19 September 2017

Price per pizza:     1,000 Scotcoin/£7

Supplier:                Don Michelle, Perth Road, Dundee

Our live feed from the event is available here:  http://productfor.ge/SDC0917

With thanks to Ronan Sandford for organising the venue, Don Michelle for the pizzas, Product Forge for the live broadcasting and everyone who came along!

KYC - Know your customer

China and the Bitcoin stumble

Chinese economy - BitcoinIf you’ve been following crypto currencies, you couldn’t help but notice a 20% slide in the Bitcoin dollar price. With the way these things work, that means the whole crypto market is down by a similar amount. Bitcoin is a bit like Rocky Marciano at the moment – groggy and not doing too well, then suddenly unleashing an unbeatable flurry of punches. Remember he retired undefeated.

By the way, Bitcoin is still up on a year ago. This from a blog post on 13th September 2016 : “In the past 2 weeks, the price of Bitcoin made a surprising run up, breaking past the famed $600 level to a $630 high”. Umm so that’s up 700% ( roughly). Read more

Keeping Scotcoin Scottish

When Scotcoin was created, our aim was to directly impact and assist those living in Scotland. Whilst digital cryptocurrency  such as Bitcoin has sought to make a huge impact on a global scale, we felt that there were huge opportunities to use this type currency effectively at a local level.

In recent years, many people have openly expressed displeasure at the handling of our financial systems. In fact, many Scottish citizens have been left feeling powerless and disenfranchised as a result. The goal of Scotcoin was and still is, to give the people of Scotland an alternative. However, as we all know, there is a tendency for Scottish innovation to be colonised by international investors. We have thought this over and have arrived at a strategy to prevent this from occurring.

Unproductive Speculative Behaviour

Recently, the issue of Scottish property not being used to benefit Scotland has featured heavily in the media. In addition to Scotland fighting for more control over its governing powers, the land registry has become a prominent issue. As it stands, there are far too many areas of derelict property in Scotland whose owners are benefitting from tax exemptions. This constitutes unproductive speculative behaviour, which is something that we do not want to see happening to our digital cryptocurrency.

Although the present team involved with Scotcoin differ from the original, we do know that large Scotcoin accounts are held by Scottish investors. The original distribution was to people with provable Scottish addresses. The hard fact is that Scotcoin is worth more if it is in active circulation. Hoarding coins will do little to increase the rate of widespread adoption. Therefore, by hoarding coins you are actively impeding the growth rate making a poor investment decision.

Encouraging Widespread Adoption

In the long term, a far better strategy would be to hold on to a few and trade the others in small amounts. By having the coins well-distributed, they become more available for everyday trading. As we’ve mentioned, this kind of consistent use is a far better way to gain value than restrictive trade on crypto exchanges.

There will only ever by 1 billion Scotcoin in existence, therefore their value is determined by demand. This demand will be heightened with a greater level of use in everyday purchasing. To do this, we need merchants to accept Scotcoin. By doing so, you not only gain an efficient purchasing system but you will also be helping to increase the value of the coin.

In the short term, we are willing to buy back coins from retailers. We hope that this will provide a semblance of security in the minds of would-be merchants, that there will be no cash flow problems caused by accepting Scotcoin.

It has always been our aim to use Scotcoin to benefit the people of Scotland. In our previous post, we talked about our passion for helping small businesses thrive by providing start-up loans. However, for these to have significant value we need merchants willing to accept the coin. Setting up a wide network of traders and bringing the coin into mainstream trading will provide the people of Scotland with a viable alternative to the pound sterling.

For further information on how you can get involved or to answer any queries, contact us.

Lessons to be learned from the Current Volatility of the Great British Pound

As we reach September many will argue that 2016 has seen a year of upheaval within the United Kingdom. Big political decisions have resulted in the UK successfully exercising its right to democracy and many members of our society will tell you that this will have far reaching consequences. Whether you are a Brexit supporter or Brexit cynic, there can be no doubt that the recent referendum has had a profound effect on our beloved Great British Pound.

As of this week the pound was down a further 1.5% against the dollar. Currently the pound is sitting at around $1.3120 for the dollar and at €1.1799 at for the Euro. While this wasn’t completely out of the blue, market analysts are expecting a fresh wave of Brexit-impacted data to have further detrimental effect on the GBP and even the UK index as a whole.

This drop has naturally affected many business and organisations such as the pharmaceutical company Hikma which suffered a dramatic plunge with its shares down a massive 17% leading the company to explain that such a fall would result in a drop in profits for one of its generic drug facilities. The well-known insurance provider Aviva actually benefited with a 7% increase leading to a respectable 13% half year rise in operating profits.
We discussed back in June the potential for cryptocurrency to act as a safe haven due to the uncertainty surrounding the pound and whether a potential exit from the EU would hold further consequences. Fast forward a month and here we are discussing the pounds current predicament. With the forecast still looking bleak for the pound perhaps it is time we refresh ourselves on the advantages of cryptocurrencies in these times of economic uncertainty.

What we love about cryptocurrencies are their relative resistance to the usual forces that influence our global economy. Scotcoin hasn’t been affected at all by Brexit nor would it be affected by a financial institution such as an international bank collapsing. In many cases cryptocurrencies benefit from traditional economic failures. This is due to a number of factors – some are simple and some are far more complex! Essentially cryptocurrencies are not controlled by a bank, they are not regulated by the government (as of yet) and their value is based on their trade interaction between users.

While some circumstances can cause  currencies to fluctuate more dramatically than usual – no currency can ever be completely stable – now is a prime time to invest in Scotcoin as an alternative to traditional fiat currencies. Because there is a finite number of Scotcoins ( there will only ever be 1 billion), our goal is to grow the overall value of Scotcoin exponentially over a period of time. With this in mind why wouldn’t you want to buy a product that is currently on the up as opposed to the poor, downward trending pound Sterling?  And do you really want so little interest on those pounds in the bank that you can’t even buy a packet of crisps? Check out our exchange or send us a tweet, text, email or call and we’ll be happy to help! “

legislation

EU Proposes End of Cryptocurrency Anonymity

Since the inception of Bitcoin, Governments have been left with the question of how to manage and regulate digital currencies. In the EU, the stance has always been to learn more and wait. However, this week could mark a change in thinking after the European Commission proposed an amendment to its AML Directive. The proposed reform could see digital currency users tracked, with their details held on a database. Therefore, anonymity in cryptocurrency use could become a thing of the past.

What is AML?

For anyone not familiar with the legislation, AML stands for Anti-Money Laundering Directive. The purpose of the legislation is to prevent money from funding illegal activity. The AML directive sets out guidelines for financial institutions, ensuring that their internal processes are set up to prevent money laundering. It provides examples of red flags and the subsequent steps to take, should suspicious activity arise.

Proposed AML reforms will endeavour to ensure that cryptocurrencies are legally recognised as money and would prompt the creation of a database to link user IDs to their respective wallet. As a result, transactions would become traceable. It is unclear at the moment whether the EU plans to hold all information on a central database or whether the task would be segmented by jurisdiction.

How will this affect my Scotcoin?

Providers of digital currency wallets- which we will be in the very near future- would be required by law to ask all European users to register with their real information. This data must then be made available to financial intelligence agencies, should they require it. The talks come after many cases of money laundering have been thrown out of court due to the fact the defendant’s use of digital currency did not contravene current law.

Our Stance

So, how do we feel about this proposed legislation change? At Scotcoin, our aim has never been to actively or passively assist anyone engaging in illegal activity. Therefore, should the proposed AML directive reform become law then we will welcome the change. The overall aim of the legislation to discourage people from using our channels to fund illicit activity such as terrorism and/or tax avoidance. Scotcoin was not created to be used as such and so we will comply with any EU changes fully if/when the time comes.

Brexit Impact?

Given the recent vote for Britain to leave the EU, it could be the case that Scotcoin is never regulated as such. The European Parliament has stated that it will vote on the proposed changes before 2016 is out. However, we are all aware that regulation changes take time to pass through any parliament. Therefore, it could be some time before new laws are enforced. By which point, Brexit may have already occurred.

Scotcoin is, as we all know, a Scottish cryptocurrency. Scotland is in flux at the moment, with a huge push taking place for independence. So, where Britain goes, Scotland may not follow. With this in mind, we are still paying very close attention to the conversations taking place in the European Parliament. Anonymity was just one of the many benefits held by digital currencies such as ours. We firmly believe that Scotcoin is strong enough and provides a significant number of user features that the proposed changes will not impact its success

5 Reasons to Buy Scotcoin

We know that interest in cryptocurrencies, and indeed Scotland’s cryptocurrency Scotcoin, has grown over recent years.  It is also clear that many of those people who are interested in Scotcoin don’t fully understand the financial benefits of buying it now.  In this blog, we will go over some the top economic reasons for purchasing Scotcoin today.

1 – Scotcoin Value is Stabilising

Over the last year, we have seen the price of Scotcoin fluctuate, but still steadily increasing its value in relation to Bitcoin.  This rise has seen Scotcoin value rising from roughly 0.15 of a Bitcoin per million with an increase of nearly 25 times to 3.5BTC per million; and against the value of US Dollar and British GBP the rise has been even greater with a growth of nearly 35 times to its present value of USD 2200 and GBP 1750 to a million Scotcoin. The rise has seen Scotcoin gain credibility as a financial instrument, which allows for a greater trust in the longevity and integrity of the currency. As the pound sterling has fallen in the wake of the Brexit vote, Scotcoin has gained friends and value too.

2 – Unstable Global Economy

All around the world, we have seen an ever more unstable economic climate, but during this uncertainty, cryptocurrencies like Scotcoin have been stable, or increasing in value, as their value is not directed correlated with the stock markets.  In 2008, this instability led to an economic collapse due to debt levels being too high and unsustainable.  Since the collapse, the levels of debt have continued to increase, and over the next few decades, we may see another collapse, which would see many of your traditional investments decrease in value.  This collapse would not affect Scotcoin, and in fact, the worse traditional economies get the better it is for cryptocurrencies.  That is why it makes smart economic sense to invest in Scotcoin as part of your investment portfolio.

3 – The Number of Scotcoin is limited

We know that there will only ever be one billion Scotcoin in existencefor people to purchase.  This is a fixed amount and won’t change, so as we see the use of Scotcoin grow as it becomes increasingly accepted, so it is simple economics to expect the value to rise accordingly.

4 – Strong Growth over the Year

If we take a look at the value of Scotcoin over the last year we can see that the value has grown strongly, although with a volatile last few months.  This volatility has led to a decline in price, however, this decline can be attributed to a pause as market participants wait for the next big rise in value.

5 – Looking for an alternative to Cash

In many Western countries around the world, we have seen an increasing desire to do away with cash in favour of digital payment methods.  This is good for Crypto Currencies like Scotcoin as  payments through the present system lack the privacy that cash offers.  Crypto Currencies , on the other hand,are digital cash and offer the privacy that consumers desire and can’t get from usual payment methods.  So, with the trend that cash will increasingly be sought to be done away with, we will see an increased demand for Crypto Currencies which can only lead to the value of Crypto Currencies like Scotcoin increasing.

The EU Referendum and Your Money

Today Britain will vote in the EU Referendum. The outcome of the vote will decide whether or not we remain as part of the European Union. In the lead up to the vote, the pound sterling has become extremely volatile. The currency exchange rates, driven by the huge level of trade uncertainty have fluctuated wildly in the last few weeks. With such an uncertain future lying ahead for the pound, many are looking to find safer homes for their savings. Cryptocurrency has the potential to be the perfect safe haven.

Fluctuation of the Pound

Since the beginning of the referendum debates, the pound has steadily fallen against other currencies. It has fallen 12.5pc against the Euro, 6.8pc against the US Dollar and 11.4 against the Australian. Much of this drop can be attributed to the fear of a possible Brexit. If Britain vote to leave the EU, our trade deals will have to be renegotiated. This applies not only to EU trade deals but also to those with other countries, which we rely on EU deals to reach. Paving the way for a post-EU Britain will take time. In the meantime, many may opt to sell off their sterling to mitigate the risks posed by the uncertainty.

Buyer Behaviour

Currency outlets throughout the UK have reported a surge in exchanges since the weekend. The Post Office Travel Money has reported that sales of foreign currency have risen by 48.8%. Online purchases have surged, with a 381% rise. The majority of buyers are exchanging their pound sterling for the Euro and American dollar. Some experts have suggested that the pound could even fall to parity with the Euro.

Cryptocurrency as a Safe Haven

Given the instability that we’ve listed above, cryptocurrency is becoming a far more favourable currency option. The main reason for this is that digital currencies such as Scotcoin are not strongly correlated with either the stock market or national currencies. The same cannot be said for the pound sterling. Therefore, now would be a perfect time to hold funds in a digital currency.

Scotcoin vs Traditional Safe Havens

In times of global financial strain, people look for safe havens. Traditionally this has meant stable valuables. Basically, items which traditionally appreciate in value regardless of the global financial climate.  However, these often have many drawbacks. The most obvious problem with holding cash in fixed assets is their lack of portability. Cryptocurrency has no such barriers. It can be moved anywhere quickly and with little effort. As Scotcoin is a peer to peer system, no banks are involved. Therefore, no operating hours are imposed. You can make payments whenever you need to.

In short, your money is protected from outside political factors affecting its value. You can also use the funds as and when you need to. Digital currency such as Scotcoin offers liquidity. At present, they are also not subject to many tax impositions.

To sum up, the EU Referendum is sure to have far-reaching impacts on the UK economy. The pound sterling has already taken a hit which will only be compounded- at least in the short-term- should Britain chose to leave the EU. For those looking for a safe haven which also offers liquidity, Scotcoin presents a perfect solution.

Why More Countries are Exploring Digital Currencies

Last week, reports emerged indicating that Russia had entered into talks over the development of a new national digital currency which would operate alongside the ruble. Now, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ has confirmed that it has been undertaking its own experiments with digital currency. Both parties are huge players in the world economy. For most people, this begs the question, what is it about cryptocurrency that currently has the world abuzz?

Quite simply, digital currency stands for innovation in payment methods. Whilst at first, many regulators treated cryptocurrencies with scepticism, now they are open to the possibilities that they represent. Many governments around the world are now in agreement that resources must be dedicated to understanding and researching blockchain and its possible implementations.

Our product, Scotcoin, is a digital currency. We hope that in time it can be used to revolutionise the way we make payments in Scotland. It is decentralised and as such, is continually being improved upon. So, why should you use Scotcoin? Well, let us tell you a little bit more about our vision and the benefits of using our product.

Our Vision

It is our hope that Scotcoin will become an effective alternative to the pound sterling. The way we make transactions is changing. You only need to glance at a news outlet to see how payment methods are becoming more and more entwined with technology. With Scotcoin, we want to ensure that this occurs in Scotland in the right way; in the safest and most secure way. This is the reason why we operate on a secure and continually innovating counterparty platform.

In the future, you will be able to use to Scotcoin with the same ease as using pounds and pence. The number of Scotcoins is fixed at 1 billion. So, the higher the demand for the coin then the higher the value.

If you wish to purchase Scotcoin, check out our full list of vendors.

The Benefits of Scotcoin

Security

We operate on the counterparty platform which operates on the same blockchain as Bitcoin. For those of you who are new to the world of digital currencies, this statement may mean nothing. However, we hope to provide more material to discuss why this is significant in the future. For now, quite simply, it means that our product is always being improved upon by the best minds in the world. As the blockchain is continually evolving, security is continually strengthened.

Only recently Judd Bagley of Overstock.com, one of Bitcoin’s first ever retailers stated that ‘the distributed nature of the network that verifies the integrity of the transactions and associated account balances makes a successful attack mathematically impossible.’

Peer to Peer Transactions

Unlike other payment transfer methods, Scotcoin removes the need for a bank or a building society to facilitate the transaction. In fact, it is more like using cash. As there is no bank or building society involved, there are no account numbers. Therefore, you do not have to share your information. You can ensure your anonymity.

Also, whilst banks are restricted to set operating hours, Scotcoin is not. Banks close at the end of the day, often causing delays in digital payments. Scotcoin transactions can take place all day, every day. They are completed almost instantly.

Very Low Processing Fees

With Scotcoin, you will be charged little or no processing fees for carrying out a transaction. Merchants, in particular, may find that they are losing valuable funds in processing fees for debit/credit cards or even PayPal transactions. At present, a merchant can typically expect to forfeit between 2.7-3.5% per PayPal transaction. You will face nowhere near this level of fee when using Scotcoin, meaning you keep more of the money that you’ve earned.

Digital currencies are changing the way we make transactions. Scotcoin is part of this positive change in Scotland. For further information on how you can become part of the innovation, see our merchant’s page or contact us. We want to make payments easier for everyone in Scotland. Help us achieve our goal.

Cryptocurrency and Taxation

Back in 2009, with the creation of Bitcoin, Government bodies around the world were tasked with dealing with a problem they had never faced before. Namely, how to treat cryptocurrencies within the scope of taxation. This has been a long process and regulation has only come to the fore in the last 2 years in the UK. It should be noted that at present Scotcoin is not taxable. However, it is expected that it may be to some degree in the future. To give you all in an idea of where Scotcoin will fall under the purview of taxation, we’ll be taking a look at the HMRC’s current stance on Bitcoin.

The last directive on Bitcoin by the HMRC was published in September 2014. In a fortunate move for digital currency traders, the UK became one of the best places for Bitcoin start-ups.  The legislation outlined rules on the following taxes:

VAT

The VAT treatment of cryptocurrencies in the UK must be consistent with any treatment which may be implemented across the EU. The EU recently voted on issues surrounding cryptocurrency, which we will discuss in more depth later in the article. However, the overall message is that the EU are taking a hands-off approach to prevent stifling new innovation. At present:

  • All income which comes as a result of mining activities will generally not be subject to VAT.
  • No VAT is due on the value of Bitcoins themselves, where an exchange of Bitcoin to another currency takes place.
  • Charges made as a result of carrying out the above exchanges will also be outside the scope of VAT.
  • VAT will be levied on any goods or services which are sold in exchange for Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency.

Corporation Tax, Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax

Businesses which accept payment for goods and services in Bitcoin will see no change in how taxable profit is calculated.

Corporation Tax

Any profit or loss on exchanges between currencies is to be taxable. For any company entering into transactions involving Bitcoin, these transactions will be recorded in accounts and will be taxed under normal corporation tax rules.

Income Tax

In the case of income tax, any non-incorporated business which deals in Bitcoin must declare any profits or losses in their accounts. These will be taxable under normal income tax guidelines.

Capital Gains Tax

When it comes to chargeable gains, any gains or losses incurred on Bitcoin are chargeable or allowable on capital gains tax if they accrue to an individual. They are chargeable or allowable for corporation tax if they accrue to an organisation.

 

How will Brexit affect Cryptocurrencies ?

As we mentioned above, how the UK treats cryptocurrencies for VAT purposes is determined by decisions made by the EU. On the 26th May, the European Parliament decided to take a hands-off approach to blockchain regulation. Instead, MEPs voted in favour of precautionary monitoring. To achieve this objective, a Virtual Currency Task Force is to be created. This task force will monitor how cryptocurrencies evolve and make recommendations for special regulation should the need ever arise.

However, if Britain votes to leave the EU then the above issues will no longer come under their purview. The UK will then have to decide on their own stance in relation to Bitcoin regulation and VAT. The Financial Conduct Authority, the financial regulator for the UK, has already expressed an interest in developing anti-money laundering regulations. This is unsurprising given that the FCA has made strengthening Britain’s AML regulations a priority over the past few years.

To conclude, although cryptocurrencies are subject to some tax regulation in the UK, Britain can still be considered to be one of the best jurisdictions to trade in digital currencies. This may change should Brexit go ahead. However, given that a ‘hands-off’ approach to regulation is favoured by UK regulatory bodies, it is unlikely that these regulations will change too drastically.