We live in a brave new cyber world, one where virtual currency may be used to exchange and pay for goods all around the world. This certainly adds a new layer of complexity to basic accounting programs and raises a few problems. What role does a bookkeeper play in cryptocurrencies, and what exactly is it? The following is Techopedia’s definition of cryptocurrency:
Cryptocurrency is a sort of digital currency that uses encryption to operate. Cryptocurrency’s security is based on cryptography, making it difficult to forge.
What are Bitcoins?
Bitcoins are a type of electronic currency, or digital public money, that is created using complicated mathematical formulae and monitored by millions of users known as “miners.” They are essentially long strings of computer code with a monetary value that fully circumvent traditional banks. They’re divisive because they’re unregulated, and banks, governments, and law enforcement organizations don’t know what to do about them.
Even though Bitcoins and other cyber-currencies are utilized all over the world, the US government’s instructions are helpful. Bitcoins are transferred from one online wallet to another at this moment and are kept on a computer, smartphone, or in the cloud. Because banks aren’t required to move or store money, they’re more akin to gold nuggets than actual currency. They are allocated a value at the time of purchase. For example, as we write this, the price of a Bitcoin is around $403, down significantly in the last few days.
Bitcoin is taken into account
At first, accounting for Bitcoins may appear to be a little perplexing. For guidance, we can look at certain guidelines put in place by the US to deal with them:
- Bitcoin and other forms of cyber-currency are the property for federal tax reasons. They are subject to the same tax principles that apply to real estate.
- Cryptocurrency is not a currency to calculate losses and gains under tax regulations.
- When using virtual currency to pay for goods or services, taxpayers must include the fair market value of the virtual currency as taxable income.
- For tax purposes, the fair market value establishes as of the date of acquisition. Simply, it (virtually) exchanges for US dollars.
- A taxpayer can have a virtual gain or loss; for example, if they purchased Bitcoins at their height of $1000 or so, they would have a loss.
Because the recognition and measurement of bitcoin involve so much judgment and ambiguity, a certain amount of disclosure is essential to inform users in their economic decision-making. If the judgments that had the most significant effect on the amounts recognized in the financial statements are part of the judgments that had the most significant effect on the amounts recognized in the financial statements, IAS 1 requires an entity to disclose judgments that its management has made regarding its accounting for holdings of assets, in this case, bitcoin. Also, Any major non-adjusting events disclose under IAS 10, Events after the Reporting Period.
As a result, accounting for bitcoin is not as straightforward as it may look. As there is currently no IFRS standard, existing accounting standards must be referred to the Conceptual Framework of Financial Reporting. SBR candidates should be prepared to use this method in an exam environment. It allows them to prove their conclusions, which is an approach that employers will anticipate in practice.