A beginner’s guide to the Monaco (MCO) cryptocurrency and how to buy MCO in Australia
Monaco is a payments and cryptocurrency platform that offers prepaid Visa cards that can be loaded with bitcoin, Ether and a range of fiat currencies. These cards are designed to allow you to hold, spend and exchange multiple currencies using one card as well as provide access to interbank exchange rates and give you the ability to buy, spend and earn cryptocurrencies.
Monaco also has a native cryptocurrency token, MCO, which can be earned as cashback at a rate of 2% whenever you use your Monaco card. Let’s take a closer look at how MCO functions and how you can buy MCO in Australia.
Where can I buy, sell or trade MCO?
You can buy and sell MCO on a number of popular cryptocurrency exchanges, including the following:
How to buy MCO: Step-by-step instructions
If you want to buy MCO tokens, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1. Create an account on a cryptocurrency exchange that allows you to trade MCO
Search for a crypto exchange that lists MCO in one or more currency pairings. Once you’ve found a suitable platform, register for an account. You’ll need to provide an email address and password to sign up, while some exchanges may also require your full name, contact details and proof of ID before allowing you to trade.
Don’t forget to also enable two-factor authentication on your account before making any deposits.
Step 2. Deposit funds into your account
At the time of writing (January 2018), no crypto exchange allows you to exchange Australian dollars (AUD) for MCO directly. As a result, you’ll have to first acquire a currency that’s available in a pairing with MCO, such as bitcoin (BTC) or Ethereum (ETH), before you can exchange it for MCO.
To deposit funds, log in to your account and click on the “Deposit” button to generate a wallet address. You can then transfer funds into your trading account from whichever exchange or wallet is holding your coins.
Step 3. Buy MCO
The final step is to exchange your BTC, ETH or other cryptocurrency for MCO. The buying process varies between exchanges, but you’ll usually have to search for your chosen pairing (such as BTC/MCO) and then click on “Buy MCO”. After entering the amount of MCO you want to buy, review the full details of the transaction and finalise your purchase.
How to sell MCO
If you want to sell your MCO tokens, you can do so by essentially following the same process as outlined in step 3, except in reverse. However, it’s worth remembering that crypto exchanges don’t list every possible currency pairing, so it often won’t be possible to directly exchange MCO for the currency you want.
Which wallets can I use to hold MCO?
For security purposes, you should never store cryptocurrency holdings on an exchange; you’ll need to find a secure wallet you can use to store your MCO. As MCO is an ERC20 token on the Ethereum blockchain, you’ll need to choose an Ethereum-compatible wallet such as one of the following:
How Monaco works
Based in Hong Kong and founded in June 2016, Monaco aims to help bring cryptocurrency into the mainstream. It does this by providing prepaid Visa cards that can be topped up with BTC and ETH as well as fiat currency that can be used anywhere Visa is accepted.
The card can be topped up via bank account transfer, bank account linking, credit/debit card or cryptocurrency transfer. Monaco says it offers the following benefits to users:
- The ability to hold multiple fiat and cryptocurrencies
- No transaction fees (limits apply)
- Access to interbank exchange rates anywhere in the world
- Earn cryptocurrency (MCO at a rate of up to 2% cashback) every time you spend using your card
- The ability to use the Monaco app to send money to other people at interbank exchange rates without any fees
There are four different cards available:
- Obsidian Black. This Platinum metal card offers 2% cashback on all purchases, unlimited monthly interbank exchange rates and a $1,000 monthly free ATM withdrawal limit. You’ll need to purchase and hold 50,000 MCO for 6 months to qualify for this card.
- Precious Metal. This Platinum metal card offers 1.5% cashback on all purchases, a $10,000 monthly limit on interbank exchange rates and an $800 monthly free ATM withdrawal limit. You’ll need to purchase and hold 500 MCO for 6 months to qualify for this card.
- Ruby Steel. This Platinum metal card offers 1% cashback on all purchases, a $4,000 monthly limit on interbank exchange rates and a $400 monthly free ATM withdrawal limit. You’ll need to purchase and hold 50 MCO for 6 months to qualify for this card.
- Midnight Blue. You can get this plastic card without buying or holding any MCO tokens. It doesn’t allow you to earn cashback and it has a $2,000 limit on monthly interbank exchange rates and a $200 monthly free ATM withdrawal limit.
Monaco has plans to roll its cards out globally; Asia is the first step, followed by Europe and then North America. An MCO token sale was held in May and June 2017, raising US$26.7 million in funds.
Things to consider when buying MCO
Crypto coins and tokens are complex, speculative and risky, so it’s essential that you thoroughly research any cryptocurrency before buying. If you’re thinking of purchasing MCO, make sure you consider the following factors first:
- Supply. According to CoinMarketCap, at the time of writing (30 January 2018), the circulating supply of MCO was 13,195,542 out of a total supply of 31,587,682 MCO.
- Availability. MCO is listed on a wide range of cryptocurrency exchanges (17 at the time of writing). If you want to buy one of Monaco’s Platinum cards, you’ll need to hold MCO tokens.
- Cashback. Monaco Platinum cardholders earn cashback in MCO on every transaction they complete with their card. You can convert MCO to BTC, ETH or fiat currencies, allowing you to spend the cashback you earn. You will also be able to purchase MCO directly through the Monaco app.
- Additional functionality. At the time of writing, Monaco’s website FAQ section revealed that the company was “working on additional functionalities” for its tokens. Monitor Monaco company announcements and reputable cryptocurrency news sites for details of what those uses may be.
- Market competition. You’ll also need to stay abreast of other companies offering similar products. For example, TenX and a range of other cryptocurrency debit card providers will compete for their share of the market.
- Potential crackdowns. In January 2018, Visa terminated its relationship with cryptocurrency card provider WaveCrest, which affected Bitwala, Xapo, Wirex, TenX and others. Monaco wasn’t affected by this crackdown as it contacts the Visa payment system via Wirecard, a provider based in Germany. However, it’s still important to be aware of the risk for future disruptions or Visa policy changes that could have a big impact on the value of MCO.
- Code rewrite. Past performance is never a reliable indicator of future performance, but it’s always a good idea to look back at the historical performance of a crypto to find out what affects its value. For example, in November 2017, MCO experienced a sharp drop in value after Monaco announced a code rewrite that would remove an asset smart contract scheme from the project.
- Roadmap. Want to know what’s next for Monaco to stay abreast of factors that could affect the value of MCO? Check out the roadmap and milestones on the Monaco website.
By taking all of these factors into account, you’ll be able to make an informed choice about whether to buy MCO.