GMO asks customers to loan it their Bitcoins

GMO has launched a program to ask customers to lend the company BTC, promises to return the loans with interest
16 April 2018   1262

After the hacking of Coincheck, Japanese regulators have stepped up and started security checks all around the country's exchanges. One of the exchanges affected by this crack down was GMO, who, while not halted outright by FSA, was ordered to increase customer security to acceptable levels. And now GMO asks its clients to loan it their Bitcoins.

On paper, the program works flawlessly. GMO will be able to enter loan agreement with its customers with the starting sum of 10 BTC all the way up to 100 BTC. Once the agreement is reached, the customer's balance will be deducted. The loan period is 90 days, but the customers will be able to return their funds before the 90 days are over, with a cancellation fee, of course. The loans held for a full three-month period will be repaid with interest. The downside of the program, according to the reports, is that customers won't be able to sell or transfer their Bitcoins during the loan period.

As of now, GMO hasn't revealed, how it plans to use the Bitcoins acquired in the program. And it's quite worrying for the community, who can't help drawing parallels with Coincheck, who has been dabbling in the similar venture before they got hacked and lost all their money.

Israeli BTC Investors to Face Catch 22

They need to pay taxes from Bitcoin investing in order to avoid their property arrest, but banks don't take their money due to AML issues
06 August 2019   135

Bitcoin investors in Israel are faced with the impossibility of paying taxes, as local banks refuse to accept funds received from the sale of cryptocurrencies because of the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing. About this writes the local edition of Haaretz on August 6.

Bitcoin is not recognized as a currency in Israel, therefore, individuals must pay 25% of the income from cryptocurrency trading to the treasury, and legal entities - 47%.

Investor Ron Gross told the publication that he acquired bitcoins in 2011 and reported his income to the tax office. In 2017, the bank that served Gross began to refuse to accept funds received from the sale of bitcoins. The investor met with representatives of the bank to demonstrate to them a 70-page history of bitcoin transactions as confirmation of the origin of the funds, but failed to convince them.

The tax authority is aware of the problem, but they say the ball isn’t in their courts. I’ve tried working with almost all the banks, but the minute they hear the word ‘Bitcoin’ they freeze up.
 

Ron Gross

Bitcoin investor from Israel

 

Since Gross was unable to pay taxes on time, his bank account, home, and even scooters were arrested. According to the investor, the tax authorities know about the problem, but can do nothing.

According to Haaretz, the tax office is aware of $ 86 million in unpaid taxes on income from cryptocurrency trading. It is possible that the real amount may be significantly higher.

Roy Arav, another Bitcoin investor, kept the proceeds from trading Bitcoin in an account with Israeli bank Discount under the control of the Bit2C exchange. The bank refuses to transfer money to Arava’s personal account under the pretext that its politicians forbid it to transfer funds related to virtual assets to client accounts due to the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing.

Arav also could not pay taxes and was forced to sue the bank. According to the investor, the authorities entered his position and granted him a deferral of time for the consideration of the claim.