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Minted – what new prime minister Rishi Sunak will bring to the UK crypto industry

By Alara Jordan

Edited by Charlie Mellor

12:03, 25 October 2022

Head and shoulders portrait of Rishi Sunak
Sunak has expressed his intent to ensure that the UK’s financial services sector remains at the forefront of technology and innovation – Photo: Shutterstock

The rise of Rishi Sunak to become the youngest UK prime minister in modern political history following the resignation of Liz Truss last week may not only benefit the British economy but also the UK’s crypto sector as well.

The former UK chancellor actively advocated for the UK to become a global crypto asset and technology hub during his time at 11 Downing Street.

In a plan set out earlier this year, Sunak outlined how the UK governement would help encourage the development of the crypto asset market in the UK in order to ensure that Britain’s booming financial services sector remains at the forefront of innovation. 

Sunak said: “It’s my ambition to make the UK a global hub for crypto asset technology.

“We want to see the businesses of tomorrow – and the jobs they create – here in the UK, and by regulating effectively we can give them the confidence they need to think and invest long-term.”

UK’s crypto potential

Over the last few years, the crypto sector has witnessed a rise in mainstream adoption with a significant increase of users, fuelled by digital currencies, stablecoin projects and the growing interest in digital assets, such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

DOGE/USD

0.11 Price
+0.740% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872

ETH/USD

3,188.88 Price
+0.720% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

BCH/USD

370.80 Price
-1.680% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 2.50

XRP/USD

0.54 Price
-1.780% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168

Almost a fifth (19%) of Brits have purchased cryptocurrencies before, an increase of 103% since 2018, when just 3% of the population owned cryptocurrency. 

In response to the growing demand, the UK government’s new measures include creating a financial market infrastructure sandbox to help firms innovate, re-evaluating the competitiveness of the UK tax system to encourage investors, and recognising stablecoins as a form of payment to be brought within the regulations of the current financial ecosystem. 

The government's plan also stated that UK will proactively explore distributed ledger technology (DLT) within financial markets to promote greater efficiency and transparency.

Royal Mint NFT

Sunak had also commissioned the Royal Mint to develop NFTs by this summer, although an update or what the NFTs will look like or when they will be launched has yet to be announced.

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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