Sayali Rai and Niyati Thaker of FinCocktail answer the most frequently asked questions about crypto. It's educational and entertaining
By Brand Connect
Few asset classes and technologies attract inquisitiveness and curiosity like crypto. The only common thread among prospective investors or those who would simply like to learn more about the subject is their diverse demographics: Whether you are a geek or a sceptic of any age and profession, or a person convinced with the technology, or someone who is still on the fence, you will indeed have your set of questions.
Sayali Rai and Niyati Thaker of FinCocktail, in association with CoinDCX, decided to take this subject on with all generations, from Gen X to Gen Z to “Get Clear with Crypto”. What followed was both entertaining and educational.
Start with Reema, a 20-year-old student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Kolkata. “Should I be interested in crypto just because everyone’s talking about it?” she asked. That’s a rather basic question illustrating the FOMO or the fear-of-missing-out trend in the industry. Just as folks did not understand the smartphone, which has now become ubiquitous and an integral part of our lives, crypto, too, is similar in that sense, said Niyati. Pointing to the merits of the blockchain, the underlying technology that governs all crypto assets, she urged to look for the future potential and applications.
It all began with Bitcoin, the oldest crypto asset, created by the enigmatic figure of Satoshi Nakamoto. “The idea was to introduce a peer-to-peer electronic system that could run safely without the need for any intermediary.” But for those scratching their heads like Reema, one question still remains: What’s the difference between crypto and blockchain?
Sayali simplifies this. “In college, the canteen bhaiyaa would keep a tab of what we ate. We settled the bill at the end of the month. That record or the khaata is like a blockchain”. However, “With blockchain, the record is not only available with the canteen guy but with everyone in the class”, added Niyati. It’s permanent and cannot be tampered with. [So, on a lighter note, if your friends wolfed down that wada pav and billed it to you, everyone would know it.]
But how much should one buy and is there an age limit, asked Reema. “You can buy as much as you can afford and need to be 18 years of age with a bank account and KYC details,” was the simple answer. Her latest fascination was also with the world of NFTs or Non Fungible Tokens, which has lately taken the world by storm with everyone from rappers to cricketers getting into it. Artists from around the world are listing their creations such as paintings, memes, GIF as NFTs, which are lines of code on the blockchain, that link to the original versions of digital artefacts.
That said, Satish, a 38-year-old senior manager at an FMCG company, shifted gears and was more interested in the technology as an asset class. Apart from bitcoin and Ethereum, which hosts ether, the second-most valuable crypto asset, “What are some of the other options available?” he asked. “And should we even bother with them?” Ruchi, a 37-year-old homemaker added.
There are thousands of crypto assets out there. “Hence, it’s important to do your own research”, advised Sayali, which can be done on DCX Learn, among others, “to learn about the utility of each crypto. Everyone spends so much time researching which shoe or shampoo to buy. You look at ratings and reviews. Crypto is no different. Look for the whitepaper, technology, who’s working on it, the market cap, etc.”
For all the practical advice, even if one were to buy some Bitcoin, the oldest of all virtual assets, “why on earth is Bitcoin so expensive?” That question from Ruchi must be on most people’s minds who would like to get started. “Bitcoin is digital gold because of its limited supply. It is scarce and so it has been likened to precious metals like gold and silver. And on account of its global availability and high liquidity makes it a great medium to store wealth for the long term without any lock-in period. You can buy even a fraction of a Bitcoin as per your budget or as little as Rs 100,” said Niyati.
And now for the most frequently asked question: “Is it legal?” asked Surinder Sanghvi, a retired colonel from Chandigarh. The simple answer: “Anyone in India is allowed to invest in crypto. But you should do your research before investing”, said Niyati. And what about the tax implications? “One needs to pay a tax of 30% on any profit that you make. A TDS of 1% is also applicable whenever you transfer a virtual digital asset above a certain monetary threshold,” said Sayali. With that out of the way Mr Sanghvi asked about the concept of “staking” and what it meant.
“Staking works on the lines of Fixed deposits where you get an interest for idle investments. For a particular time period, after investing in some crypto assets, you can earn money on the annual rate of return. This is available on exchange platforms like CoinDCX. All you need to do is open a CoinDCX account, figure out what cryptos are available for staking, invest and start earning after doing some research,” she said. “The price of a crypto asset is determined by the market economics of demand and supply,” added Niyati.
Knowing about crypto need not be rocket science. However, where can one get started with the influx of information available online? Try the DCX Learn Platform which simplifies complicated jargons from the fascinating world of crypto assets and blockchain.
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