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Bitcoin prices soar as Americans debate 'crucial' financial bill

One bitcoin now costs Sh4.7 million

Bitcoin prices soar as Americans debate 'crucial' financial bill

Bitcoin, the world's largest cryptocurrency has reached Sh4.8 million ($41,983) its highest in two weeks. This is a 27% rise from the year's low of Sh4.8 million ($32,950) on January 24.

The recovery in stocks boosted other listed crypto assets on Friday as well. Ether, the coin linked to the Ethereum blockchain network, scaled the Sh340,500 ($3,000) level for the first time since January 21.

This comes a day after a bipartisan group of U.S. House representatives reintroduced a bill that would exempt people from paying taxes on bitcoin and crypto payments under Sh22,700 ($200), called "an important step forward" by one congressman.

"This legislation is an important step forward, and it lays the groundwork for growing the digital economy," stated Arizona congressman David Schweikert.

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Currently, bitcoin and crypto users in America must report changes in a cryptocurrency’s value in dollars from when they purchased the crypto to when it was used in a transaction, including small retail purchases.

Bitcoin may have been around since 2009; however, it really is only in more recent years that it has started to take off in a more mainstream way.

Bitcoin is gaining huge adoption in Africa for reasons that have nothing to do with speculation. For many, it is a cost-effective way of transferring money.

Wide-spread mobile phone adoption is paving the way for the use of Bitcoin in Africa. The general rise of Bitcoin adoption in Africa goes together with this mobile phone penetration, leading to a surge in Bitcoin remittances on the continent.

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The Kenyan government has, however, on several occasions issued cautionary but not prohibitory statements against the use of crypto.

On the regulation front, in 2019, the Kenyan government formed a Distributed Ledger and Artificial Intelligence Taskforce to look into blockchain and related emerging technologies.

The taskforce came up with recommendations, including the set-up of a regulatory sandbox under the Capital Markets Authority.

These regulations will include such assets as crypto-currencies, with the aim of legally recognising fund managers of such assets and protecting the investors.

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