personal finance

Bitcoin tops $12,000 for the first time January 2018

NEW DELHI: Bitcoin prices surpassed $12,000 on Wednesday for the first time since January 2018. The interest in the cryptocurrency rose after Facebook unveiled its own digital unit Libra.

On a year-to-date basis, bitcoin has risen 216 per cent to $12,155 on June 26 against $3843.52 on January 1. The currency is still way below its record level of $20,000 witnessed at the end of 2017.

On the other hand, the benchmark equity indices BSE Sensex has gained nearly 9 per cent this year so far, whereas precious metal gold has rallied over 10 per cent to Rs 35,635 during the same period.

However, holding, selling or dealing in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin could soon land you in jail for 10 years in India.

The “Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2019” draft has proposed 10-year prison sentence for persons who “mine, generate, hold, sell, transfer, dispose, issue or deal in cryptocurrencies, according to a report by IANS on June 7.

Besides making it completely illegal, the bill makes holding of cryptos a non-bailable offence.

A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security and is generally based on blockchain technology, a distributed ledger enforced by a disparate network of computers. Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency in the world.

Facebook plans to launch Libra next year, with the backing by a basket of real-world currencies and a consortium of companies including Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and Uber.


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