Friday, February 26, 2021

Cryptocurrency Adoption Passes Another Milestone Surpassing 100 Million Users

 


According to a new study conducted by Crypto.com, the total number of global cryptocurrency users has surpassed 100 million for the first time ever. The study, which measured the cryptocurrency marketplace's size using onchain metrics, survey analysis, and internal data, recorded 106 million cryptocurrency users in January 2021.

Compared to December 2020, the 106 million users represent a 15.7% increase in just one month. What's fueling the growth of the crypto market? According to Crypto.com's research, it comes down to bitcoin adoption momentum.

Eric Anziani, Crypto.com COO had this to say to Bitcoin.com regarding the research's findings:

Our study improves upon previously used methods to find a clear trend of growing cryptocurrency ownership. As more companies and merchants adopt cryptocurrencies as a treasury asset and means of payment, we expect 2021 to be a banner year for crypto mass adoption, bringing us ever closer to our vision of 'Cryptocurrency in Every Wallet'.

Bitcoin smashed through its previous all-time high, pushing its market capitalization past $1 trillion. The growth shows no apparent signs of slowing down either as sentiment around cryptocurrency increases, especially as JP Morgan and BNY Mellon will start offering digital payment methods. Not even two full months into the year yet, investors are piling 10-digit figures into bitcoin. Tesla bought $1.5 billion of bitcoin at the beginning of February, and investment website Motley Fool announced a $5 million investment just a week later.

Bitcoin isn't the only thing that's fueling the demand for cryptocurrency. Several other factors are at play too. Crypto.com's research attributes this rapid ascent to the growth of the decentralized finance (defi) market, the ability to buy, sell, and hold cryptocurrency through Paypal, and the institutional adoption of cryptocurrency are attracting new crypto users every day.

Defi Momentum is Growing
The defi market's momentum is significant given the increased demand for ethereum and other altcoins like Binance's BNB. The total market capitalization of coins locked in defi has grown from $690 million to over $11.7 billion, a significant number that's encouraging new investors to enter the market.

According to Crypto.com's research, ETH's growth rate was higher than BTC in November and December 2020; BTC's unique users grew by 1.5% in November compared to ETH's 2.8% growth. In December, ETH's change was nearly double that of BTC's: 2.8% compared to 1.2%.

How accurate are all of these numbers? A total number of 24 exchanges were included in the research, and while Crypto.com has updated and improved its methodology since its last report, it does admit these figures may be subject to some small caveats.

South Korea back on track to roll out 20% digital currency tax by 2022

 

South Korea is reportedly bringing forward—yet again—plans for a tax on digital currency profits, which will see gains liable to a 20% tax, according to local media.

Reporting on an announcement from the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Korean Herald said profits from trading and holding digital currencies in Korea would be subject to the new tax from as early as January 1, 2022, as part of the country's commitment to establish a more robust legal framework for digital currency dealings.

The tax is liable on gains of over KRW2.5 million, roughly equivalent to about $2,300. Any gains up to that level will not be liable for taxation, but must still be reported to the tax authorities at year end, as with other forms of income.

The country had previously sought to introduce the tax in 2020, but encountered significant pushback from the digital currency community. Several delays in policy followed, including pushing a previous 2022 deadline back to 2023, until the latest announcement.

With the latest update, it looks as though the tax authorities are set to impose the levy from the start of 2022, in line with the reclassification of digital currencies as financial assets.

Digital currency inherited and gifted will also be subject to the tax, according to the reports, which the Herald says will be calculated using weighted average values for digital currency over a period of time.

"In such cases, the price of the asset will be calculated on the basis of the daily average price for one month before and one month after the date of the inheritance or gift."

The tax has again met with local opposition, with some 38,000 citizens having signed a petition against the plans to introduce the tax.

Nevertheless, the authorities are intent on pressing forward with the new levy, as part of its ongoing process of overhauling securities laws.