Trading app Robinhood has announced that its users will be able to gift friends and family crypto over the holiday season.
In a Thursday announcement, Robinhood said its users — with the exception of those in Hawaii and Nevada — could send as little as $1 in Bitcoin (BTC) or six other cryptocurrencies with a personalized digital card starting on Dec. 22. To ensure the crypto is not lost by a recipient unwilling or unable to use it, the trading app has set up a 14-day window to accept the gift, at which point the user will not be charged.
"Crypto gifting is a great way for our customers to help remove the emotional and economic barrier of their friends and family taking their first step into crypto," Robinhood Crypto COO and Lead Christine Brown told Cointelegraph. "It is also an easy and immediate gift for those that are already crypto fans."
Robinhood’s offering is similar to those currently offered by Block, formerly Square, in addition to PayPal and Coinbase. It’s unclear if the trading app intends to make the crypto gift giving feature available after the holidays.
Cointelegraph reported on Dec. 7 that a study by lending firm BlockFi showed many Americans would be willing to accept cryptocurrencies including BTC, Ether (ETH), and Dogecoin (DOGE) as gifts this holiday season. However, the same survey revealed that the majority of respondents did not have the skills to transfer crypto.
The Giving Block, an online platform which allows nonprofit organizations and charities to accept digital asset donations, has launched a service tailored to donors wishing to send large amounts of crypto.
In a Wednesday announcement, the Giving Block said it partnered with crypto tax startup Taxbit, New York-based accounting firm Friedman LLP, and Ren to start a service aimed at individuals, institutions, and advisors looking to reduce their tax exposure when donating crypto. Giving Block co-founder Pat Duffy said the Private Client Services streamlines its existing donation process allowing “high-value donors to quickly and securely give large gifts to their favorite charities while reducing their tax bill.”
According to the platform, individuals wishing to make large donations in crypto, including “illiquid small-cap and mid-cap cryptocurrencies” now have more opportunities to reduce their capital gains tax and potentially increasing deductions when it comes time to report to the IRS. The Giving Block’s “high-value donors” have access to crypto tax experts, accounts, and appraisers to facilitate the transaction and subsequent reporting.
With many countries already celebrating the holidays this year, many have chosen to give to charity in addition to gifts for friends and family. Giving Block CEO Alex Wilson told Cointelegraph last week he expected the platform to handle more than $100 million in crypto donations for 2021, a more than 2,400% increase over $4 million the previous year.
On Tuesday, BloombergQuint (Bloomberg India) reported that the penalty for non-compliance with the Indian government's crypto policies could range from a maximum fine of 20 crore rupees ($2.7 million dollars) or 1.5 years in jail. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will likely give cryptocurrency investors a deadline to comply with new rules and declare their assets. While the regulatory environment in the country holds a high degree of uncertainty, reports have indicated that investors' crypto must soon be held in exchanges operating under the oversight of the Securities and Exchange Board of India, or SEBI.
This would mean that private wallets would not be legal under the proposed legislation, and investors who use them could be subjected to the aforementioned judicial penalties. In addition, Modi's government plans to institute a minimum capital threshold for investing in cryptocurrencies.
India is taking a hard-line stance against crypto due, in part, to the perceived rise in fraud, money laundering and terrorist financing in recent years. Another element, however, is that the competition from privately-owned or privately-issued cryptocurrencies would, in theory, threaten the Reserve Bank of India's plans to launch a digital rupee. The official text from an ongoing controversial crypto bill in the country is as follows:
"To create a facilitative framework for the creation of the official digital currency to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India. The Bill also seeks to prohibit all private cryptocurrencies in India; however, it allows for certain exceptions to promote the underlying technology of cryptocurrency and its uses."
This Daily Dose was brought to you by Cointelegraph.