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On Thursday, a letter was issued to parliament by Dutch finance minister, Wopke Hoekstra, to encourage a global approach to cryptocurrency regulation. The main focus of Hoekstra is on new consumer protections and to start it up, he wants to have a dialogue with credit card companies about potentially introducing stronger protections for those people who prefer to buy cryptocurrency with their credit cards.

According to Hoekstra, by the end of 2019, all local exchange platforms, plus, the cryptocurrency regulation and services would deceptively get registered with the government and should be also obeying their customers necessities. The finance minister also proposed some new regulations in the letter, that could also be helpful in protecting the ICOs (initial coin offering) contributors.

Hoekstra highlighted;

“It is being investigated whether investors in ICOs can become just as good protected as investors with a normal IPO or bond issue. The current framework is not sufficient for this.”

In the past, particularly in ICOs, some issues were highlighted by the regulators, making these proposals more noteworthy. Last November, a statement was released by AFM (Authority for Financial Markets) of Netherlands, which is a Dutch version of U.S. SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) and referred the ICO market to a dangerous-cocktail. Linked with these statements, a ban was proposed by Hoekstra that’d forbid marketing of risky financial products to random customers.

Moreover, Hoekstra also promised to work in the European Union with other countries as well and encourage collective research to discover the market’s cross-border nature. Yet, Hoekstra specified that even inside the Netherlands, more work is required for updating the laws of the country to account for cryptocurrencies and more erratic activities around it.

 

As in the letter Hoekstra wrote;

“The current supervisory framework and instruments are insufficiently tailored to cryptocurrency,”

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7 Shocking Things You Can Purchase with Bitcoin Right Now

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Bitcoin has been on a roll ever since the hard fork incident took place. The digital currency climbed to many new heights within the past month but, the most recent one was it hitting a record of $5000 per coin on Saturday, last week.  Let’s not forget, the value did fall by $1000 within three days before it made a speedy recovery. Bitcoin right now is hovering above $4,200 per coin.

We’re all aware that the rapid fluctuations of the cryptocurrency make it difficult to price products. But even with that continuing, there are still some exciting and wild purchases you can make with bitcoin.

Here are 7 of the most shocking things you can buy with bitcoin.

  1. Airline Ticket

    Back in the summer of 2014, Air Baltic was announced to be the first airline to accept bitcoin as a means of payment for airline tickets.

  2. Pizza

    In 2013, ForCoinsLLC was launched by two bitcoin enthusiasts. Their aim was to make it simpler for consumers to purchase items with bitcoin. PizzaForCoins is their website that allows you to pay with bitcoin at local franchises of Papa Johns, Pizza Hut and Dominoes.

  3. A college degree

    You can get a master’s degree in digital currency from the University of Nicosia, in Cyprus. They accept tuition payments in bitcoin through a bitcoin exchange but, their first class is free online. The degree costs $14,500 however, if you pay in bitcoin, you get a 5% discount.

  4. An apartment in Dubai

    Looking for a new pad? Well, the Aston Plaza and Residences in Dubai newly announced that the developers would be accepting bitcoin as a payment for studios, one and two-bedroom apartments. Prices begin at around $127,800 which is 27.55 bitcoins.

  5. Date night

    In Berlin, a restaurant owner claimed that about 10% of his customers pay using cryptocurrencies.

  6. A brandy distillery

    Presently, a distillery in Nemesvamos, Hungary, is selling its building along with the equipments for a little above 73 bitcoins.

  7. A funeral

    One funeral home in the U.S., Crescent Tide Cremation Services in Twin Cities, Minnesota is known to accept bitcoin as a means of payment. They even offer 3% discount if you pay in crypto-cash.

 

Story Credits: mic.com

Image Credits: techrepublic.com

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An Important Announcement By Global ICO Accelerator Program

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Iconiq Lab, based in Germany, is a global token sale accelerator and initial coin offering program. According to a recent announcement by Iconiq Lab, it has decided to launch two new branches in the US and Asia. This announcement was made public by Patrick Lowry, CEO of Iconiq Lab. The US branch is expected to be launched in New York in May, while the Singapore branch will be launched in July 2018.with the first batch scheduled to begin in Nov. 2018.

When asked about the reason for that launch, Patrick Lowry stated that due to the terrific success rate of German accelerator program and the unexpected feedback from the target community are the main reasons behind that launch.

Why was Iconic Lab launched?

Reason behind the launch of Iconiq Lab was to compensate the needs of both crypto investors and efforts leading to the completion of their own initial coin offerings. Iconiq Lab also launched a global ico accelerator program which was further made possible through the launch of their own token, the ICNQ Club Membership Token.

Basically the Iconiq Lab refers to a German based initial coin offering program which is also acting as a token sale accelerator program at the moment. Edge of that company is that it funds, develops and accelerates the most promising crypto-startups leading to their own token sale. Their speciality is that they help launch tokens supported by real-world business demands and sustainable solutions.

Financial cooperation with EOS and FinLab

FinLab AG is a public trade based German FinTech company builder. In Nov. 2017 it placed a an investment into Iconiq Lab which no doubt was a minor one but had strategic importance. This mutual cooperation led to the successful launch of an accelerator program on behalf of Iconiq Lab. the result and feedback was quiet amazing as Iconiq Lab received almost 200 applications for the first batch of that program  in late 2017. Due to several reason, it shortlisted the applications and eventually selected just five applicants to enter the program. That program was properly launched in Feb. 2018 in Germany.

These five selected companies are propelling towards their own initial coin offering and are at the moment in the middle of a digital roadshow. These companies are also giving rise to innovative Blockchain solutions.

Iconiq Lab’s mission behind all these efforts is to allow the flow of characterized creativity by using tokens as financial instruments. According to some crypto experts it will also facilitate crypto investors with dependable data in case they are trying to judge new token investment opportunities and their future impact.

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Kakao Denies ICO Rumour While Confirming Blockchain Platform Establishment

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Kakao was established in 2014 and is a South Korean internet company. Kakao is basically internet giant in South Korea and recently rumours had been circulating about Kakao’s ICO plans. However, it’s been confirmed by Kakao that it is going to set up new blockchain, revoking the rumours of any planned ICO (Initial Coin Offering).

Kakao’s Blockchain-Powered Platform

On Tuesday, a press conference was held, in which the largest messenger app of South Korea, Kakao Talk’s operator said, that a new division has been launched by the company to develop a blockchain platform for the completion within a year. The South Korean news agency, Yonhap reported, that its new product will be accessible to the public as an institute for application developers.

Views of Kakao’s CEO

According to the CEO of Kakao, Joh Su-Yong and Yeo Min-soo - while mentioning Ground X, they said that the company is also planning to assimilate the upcoming services related to blockchain technology along with the current internet offerings of Kakaos.

Joh stated at a news conference:

“Now at Kakao 3.0, we will continue to explore our growth potential by seamlessly integrating services among Kakao companies and actively building a presence in the global market.”

On the other hand, this news confirms a report which was published earlier this month that a blockchain unit has been launched by Kakaos. Another rumour has been shot-down today, which is also mentioned in the report above that Kakao is considering its own cryptocurrency under the name of “Kakao Coin”, which will be issued through an ICO outside of the country, South Korea, where they are prohibited.

ICO Rumour

On ZDNet, Joh denied all the plans related to ICOs, either inside South Korea or through a foreign strategy to avoid regulation in the country that banned the fundraising method based on tokens, back in September 2017. Earlier, Kakao was involved with the establishment of Upbit (South Korean cryptocurrency exchange), when its messaging services got merged with the trading platform.

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Bitcoin Market Cap Hits $52 billion for the First Time Ever

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Bitcoin investors get apprehensive as Bitcoin’s value surpasses $3000, hitting a new record within a week after the split.

According to CoinDesk.com, Bitcoin climbed to $3,360.87 on Saturday and by Sunday, it had settled down to $3,286.87 while pushing bitcoin’s market capitalization past $50 billion for the first time ever. It’s market cap now lies at $52.3 billion at press time.

The reason behind these price jumps is the launch of Bitcoin Cash, which is a new version of the cryptocurrency. While Bitcoin’s price did have a 5% drop during the initial days of the new currency, it rapidly recovered. Previously in June, Bitcoin had hit the $3000 however, it fell 20% soon after.

As expected, market volumes have increased along with the price due to the increase in trade volume within the past couple of days and by the looks of it, Bitcoin is back and better than ever.

 

bitcoin image via atlanticbase.com

rocket image via Science Learning Hub

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Bitcoin Developing Countries – Top 8 Countries Growing In Bitcoin

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Countries around the world noticed the surge in the price of Bitcoin in 2016. Few countries’ made reforms in the financial market sector and grew faster than others. A large number of Bitcoin exchanges provides the growing data of these countries. In this article, we will read about the top bitcoin developing countries.

Japan: 

After China, Japan is the second highest Bitcoin trading market. Additionally, due to Bitflyer’s zero-fee campaigns yen beat the US dollar in May. According to the well-known platform Bravenewcoin’s data, the exchange has 50% share of Bitcoin market in Japan. This trading volume increases from 1845 to 97,815 Bitcoin on daily basis, a 53-fold gain.

Venezuela:

Venezuela has the money supply problems but Bitcoin demand is still increasing in the country. SurBitcoin is a top and the well-reputed company of the Venezuela but denies to publish its volume data.

Though, country’s trading volume can be examined through LocalBitcoins. Only 22 bitcoins were traded in the first week of the year. However, during the following couple of months, the volume went up to 373 bitcoins before settling down at 223 Bitcoin at the time of writing. The overall trading volume grew by 913% this year.

Indonesia:

Indonesian Bitcoin trading is a fifth top rated market in the volume. It observed a huge spike in trade during June. Quoine  - a Singapore based exchange with 90% of current trade in rupiah was trading at 3,344 Bitcoins at the time of writing, with a volume of 51,500 in June.

South Korea:

Koreans have the option to buy Bitcoin from convenience stores. The networks of these convenience stores use an exchange called Korbit. The exchange hosts over 70% of the Korean won Bitcoin trading volume. Korbit’s volume was 583 bitcoins/day at the start of this year. However, at the time of writing, it has reached 3,168 bitcoins – showcasing a growth of 443%.

Colombia:

Colombia also shows the signs of life on LocalBitcoins by trading 26 bitcoins for a week up to 122 most recently.

Malaysia:

Malaysia’s Bitcoin trading market jumped from 150 to 542 bitcoins on LocalBitcoin last week. A humungous growth of 261 percent. The Bitcoin experts indicate that this major shift is possibly due to the introduction of a new exchange ‘Xbit Asia’ to the market this year.

Russia:

Rubles is the seventh most traded currency for the bitcoins. A well-reputed exchange shows the 121% growth by raising its volume to 5,983. The digital currency is facing different circumstance regarding legalization in the country this year. However, the new Bitcoin startups hold the 50% volume of trade on LocalBitcoin.

Australia:

At the start of this year, the departure of ‘igot exchange’ – a major Bitcoin exchange in the country – the market dropped from 3,850 bitcoins/day to 500 Bitcoin/day. However, the arrival of a new exchange called ACX has restored the market. Currently, the daily trading volume of Bitcoin is over 12,000BTC/day.

These are the major countries using bitcoin making more opportunities for crypto adoption. So, next time someone asks which country uses bitcoin, just link them to this particular article.

Tags: which country uses bitcoin, which country use bitcoin currency, bitcoin developing countries

Chart and image credits: cryptocurrency.com

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