One More Step by France towards Crypto Adoption

French lawmakers are planning to cut the capital gain tax on cryptocurrencies. The lawmakers have amended the 2019 budget bill which will reduce the capital gain tax on cryptocurrencies sales from 36.2 per cent to 30 per cent. In France, other non-real assets are also taxed at a flat rate of 30%. The amendment will bring crypto transactions in line with other non-real estate assets.

According to a report, the finance commission of lower house of parliament has adopted the budget bill amendment. But in order to become a law, it must be approved in the final version of the bill by the broader parliament. If the bill approved in the broader parliament the new tax will come into force from January 2019.

At one point in time, the cryptocurrency capital gain tax reached 45% in the third largest economy in Europe. In April this year, the Council of State said that the gains generated from cryptocurrencies should be treated as capital gain on movable properties. And this led a significant slash in the tax rate of digital assets. The step taken by the French regulators perceived very positively by the blockchain and cryptocurrency ecosystem.

France is trying to become the heaven for the crypto industry in hope to attract foreign investment. Currently, blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies represent a new vibrant industry in France. The President of France, Emmanuel Macron launched the Action Plan for Business Growth and Transformation (PACTE) earlier this year. The new action plan will make it easy to operate blockchain and crypto companies in France. In September, France government also laid out legal guidelines for fundraising via Initial coin Offerings (ICOs) or token sale. The finance minister Bruno Le Maire said that the new legal framework enables the financial regulators Authorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) to approve and issue the permits to the businesses which are planning to float initial coin offering in France. The issuers of ICOs have to give full disclosure to the AMF so that the buyers of tokens can make an informed decision about investing in ICO. Earlier the French regulators were concerned about the lack of clear regulations on ICO projects as there are some risks associated with ICOs such as terrorist financing, money laundering, and the possibility of lose money.

Author: Chetna Phour
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Nasdaq and Microsoft join forces to deliver blockchain services

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have been an attractive proposition for a lot of traditional technology and financial companies recently and everyone is trying to board the bus in the best way they can. Same has been the case with Microsoft and Nasdaq who are coming together to deliver on the blockchain promise.

The partnership will offer blockchain based software

In the recent news report released by Bloomberg, Microsoft has said that’s its Azure blockchain services will integrate with Nasdaq’s Financial Framework, which offers software for traders, exchanges and clearinghouses to interact with each other.

The partnership will create a blockchain system that helps different technologies work together for Nasdaq customers. For example, it will make it easier to match buyers and sellers, and manage the delivery, payment, and settlement of transactions, the companies said.

Nasdaq Financial Framework plans to offer customers the ability to use different blockchains through one common interface, which the company hopes will ease and accelerate blockchain use and let customers choose which option is best for different situations.

The partnership will be announced Tuesday as Microsoft business development chief Peggy Johnson speaks at Bloomberg’s CIO Exchange conference.

Independently too, Nasdaq and Microsoft are doing their bit of work in blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Nasdaq has already announced plans list multiple cryptocurrencies as early as 2019. A couple of months back, Nasdaq reportedly hosted a closed-door meeting in Chicago with representatives from about half a dozen companies, including Gemini and other cryptocurrency exchanges. As per a report by Bloomberg, the gathering was aimed to encourage the industry to work toward improving the image of cryptocurrency by validating its potential role in global markets.

While Microsoft is supposedly joined hands with The Seattle-based coffee giant, Starbucks, and Intercontinental Exchange, is working to launch a new company called Bakkt that will enable consumers and institutions to buy, sell, store and spend cryptocurrencies on the global network.

In 2015, Microsoft and ConsenSys had partnered to offer Ethereum Blockchain as a Service (EBaaS) on Microsoft Azure so enterprise clients and developers could have a single click cloud-based blockchain developer environment.

With Microsoft and Nasdaq, both taking progressive strides in blockchain and cryptocurrencies is a super positive sign for the industry. Big names like these will contribute to goodwill and enforce trust into the cryptocurrencies industry- something that is very much required in the crypto industry today.

Author: Divya Bhatia
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