Buy Other Cryptocurrency
Note: Except as otherwise noted, these FAQs apply only to taxpayers who hold virtual currency as a capital asset. For more information on the definition of a capital asset, examples of what is and is not a capital asset, and the tax treatment of property transactions generally, see Publication 544, Sales and Other Dispositions of Assets.
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A10. Yes. Generally, self-employment income includes all gross income derived by an individual from any trade or business carried on by the individual as other than an employee. Consequently, the fair market value of virtual currency received for services performed as an independent contractor, measured in U.S. dollars as of the date of receipt, constitutes self-employment income and is subject to the self-employment tax.
A16. Yes. If you exchange virtual currency held as a capital asset for other property, including for goods or for another virtual currency, you will recognize a capital gain or loss. For more information on capital gains and capital losses, see Publication 544, Sales and Other Dispositions of Assets.
A24. When you receive cryptocurrency from an airdrop following a hard fork, you will have ordinary income equal to the fair market value of the new cryptocurrency when it is received, which is when the transaction is recorded on the distributed ledger, provided you have dominion and control over the cryptocurrency so that you can transfer, sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of the cryptocurrency.
A25. If you receive cryptocurrency from an airdrop following a hard fork, your basis in that cryptocurrency is equal to the amount you included in income on your Federal income tax return. The amount included in income is the fair market value of the cryptocurrency when you received it. You have received the cryptocurrency when you can transfer, sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of it, which is generally the date and time the airdrop is recorded on the distributed ledger. See Rev. Rul. 2019-24PDF. For more information on basis, see Publication 551, Basis of Assets.
A26. If you receive cryptocurrency in a transaction facilitated by a cryptocurrency exchange, the value of the cryptocurrency is the amount that is recorded by the cryptocurrency exchange for that transaction in U.S. dollars. If the transaction is facilitated by a centralized or decentralized cryptocurrency exchange but is not recorded on a distributed ledger or is otherwise an off-chain transaction, then the fair market value is the amount the cryptocurrency was trading for on the exchange at the date and time the transaction would have been recorded on the ledger if it had been an on-chain transaction.
A28. When you receive cryptocurrency in exchange for property or services, and that cryptocurrency is not traded on any cryptocurrency exchange and does not have a published value, then the fair market value of the cryptocurrency received is equal to the fair market value of the property or services exchanged for the cryptocurrency when the transaction occurs.
A30. No. A soft fork occurs when a distributed ledger undergoes a protocol change that does not result in a diversion of the ledger and thus does not result in the creation of a new cryptocurrency. Because soft forks do not result in you receiving new cryptocurrency, you will be in the same position you were in prior to the soft fork, meaning that the soft fork will not result in any income to you.
A31. No. If you receive virtual currency as a bona fide gift, you will not recognize income until you sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of that virtual currency. For more information about gifts, see Publication 559, Survivors, Executors, and Administrators.
A38. No. If you transfer virtual currency from a wallet, address, or account belonging to you, to another wallet, address, or account that also belongs to you, then the transfer is a non-taxable event, even if you receive an information return from an exchange or platform as a result of the transfer.
A39. Yes. You may choose which units of virtual currency are deemed to be sold, exchanged, or otherwise disposed of if you can specifically identify which unit or units of virtual currency are involved in the transaction and substantiate your basis in those units.
A41. If you do not identify specific units of virtual currency, the units are deemed to have been sold, exchanged, or otherwise disposed of in chronological order beginning with the earliest unit of the virtual currency you purchased or acquired; that is, on a first in, first out (FIFO) basis.
A43. You must report most sales and other capital transactions and calculate capital gain or loss in accordance with IRS forms and instructions, including on Form 8949, Sales and Other Dispositions of Capital Assets, and then summarize capital gains and deductible capital losses on Form 1040, Schedule D, Capital Gains and Losses.
A46. The Internal Revenue Code and regulations require taxpayers to maintain records that are sufficient to establish the positions taken on tax returns. You should therefore maintain, for example, records documenting receipts, sales, exchanges, or other dispositions of virtual currency and the fair market value of the virtual currency.
A cryptocurrency is a digital asset that can circulate without the centralized authority of a bank or government. To date, there are 23,080 cryptocurrency projects out there that represent the entire $1 trillion crypto market.
Created in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, Bitcoin (BTC) is the original cryptocurrency. As with most cryptocurrencies, BTC runs on a blockchain, or a ledger logging transactions distributed across a network of thousands of computers. Because additions to the distributed ledgers must be verified by solving a cryptographic puzzle, a process called proof of work, Bitcoin is kept secure and safe from fraudsters.
Both a cryptocurrency and a blockchain platform, Ethereum is a favorite of program developers because of its potential applications, like so-called smart contracts that automatically execute when conditions are met and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Created by some of the same founders as Ripple, a digital technology and payment processing company, XRP can be used on that network to facilitate exchanges of different currency types, including fiat currencies and other major cryptocurrencies.
Dogecoin was famously started as a joke in 2013 but rapidly evolved into a prominent cryptocurrency thanks to a dedicated community and creative memes. Unlike many other cryptos, there is no limit on the number of Dogecoins that can be created, which leaves the currency susceptible to devaluation as supply increases.
Binance USD (BUSD) is a stablecoin that Paxos and Binance founded to create a cryptocurrency backed by the U.S. dollar. To maintain this value, Paxos holds an amount of U.S. dollars equal to the total supply of BUSD. As with other stablecoins, BUSD gives traders and crypto users the ability to engage in transactions with other crypto assets while minimizing the risk of volatility.
While some crypto function as currencies, others are used to develop infrastructure. For instance, in the case of Ethereum or Solana, developers are building other cryptos on top of these platform currencies, and that creates even more possibilities (and cryptos).
Cryptocurrencies are rising in importance and not going away anytime soon. While the initial premise of cryptocurrency was to fix the problems with traditional currencies, there are now a whole host of utility cryptocurrencies that have sprung up, thanks to the creation of the blockchain.
Like millions of people, Michelle Milkowski bought Bitcoin and other digital currencies as the crypto industry spent millions of dollars on marketing. Kholood Eid for NPR hide caption
Because her son's daycare closed in the early days of the pandemic, she had some extra cash. So, like millions of other people, Milkowski downloaded the Robinhood trading app.
"I just couldn't believe it," she says, noting she first heard of the popular cryptocurrency in 2016, when its price was less than a hundredth of that. "I felt like I'd just missed the boat, because I could have bought it before it skyrocketed."
At the beginning of the pandemic, Michelle Milkowski started investing in penny stocks. A few months later, she bought cryptocurrency for the first time. Kholood Eid for NPR hide caption
A cryptocurrency exchange is a platform where buyers and sellers meet to trade cryptocurrencies. Exchanges often have relatively low fees, but they tend to have more complex interfaces with multiple trade types and advanced performance charts, all of which can make them intimidating for new crypto investors.
Once you decide on a cryptocurrency broker or exchange, you can sign up to open an account. Depending on the platform and the amount you plan to buy, you may have to verify your identity. This is an essential step to prevent fraud and meet federal regulatory requirements.
There is a huge appetite for cryptocurrency ETFs, which would allow you to invest in many cryptocurrencies at once. No cryptocurrency ETFs are available for everyday investors quite yet, but there may be some soon. As of June 2021, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is reviewing three cryptocurrency ETF applications from Kryptcoin, VanEck and WisdomTree.
As decentralized platforms, blockchain-based cryptocurrencies allow individuals to engage in peer-to-peer financial transactions or enter into contracts. In either case, there is no need for some trusted third-party intermediary such as a bank, monetary authority, court, or judge. This has the potential to disrupt the existing financial order and democratize finance. The size of the cryptocurrency space has grown exponentially in the past decade, with new innovations and a collective market capitalization of more than $952 billion.
Most cryptocurrencies today are derived in some form or another from Bitcoin, which uses open-source code and a censorship-resistant architecture. This means anyone can copy and tweak the code and create their own new coin. 041b061a72