Welcome to the CoinSmart crypto recap. Let’s look at the hottest stories that came up this past week. Here is an overview:
- SEC sues Binance
- SEC sues Coinbase
- UK FCA cracks down on crypto ads
SEC sues Binance
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged cryptocurrency exchange Binance, its US affiliate BAM Trading Services Inc., and their founder, Changpeng Zhao, with several securities law violations, including mishandling customer funds, lying to investors, and operating as an unregistered securities exchange. The SEC claims that Binance mixed billions in customer funds and secretly transferred them to a separate company controlled by Zhao. In addition to violating US securities laws, the exchange is also accused of lying about its risk controls and concealing who operated the platform and its affiliated market maker. Despite these allegations, Zhao has dismissed the charges and reassured that Binance’s operations remain stable. This lawsuit adds to the growing regulatory action taken against Binance in the US, including a lawsuit from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) earlier this year.
SEC sues Coinbase
SEC has also sued cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, alleging it has been acting as an unregistered securities exchange, broker, and clearing agency since 2019. The SEC’s charges also pertain to Coinbase’s unregistered offer and sale of securities linked to its staking-as-a-service program. According to the SEC, the company facilitated marketplace interactions between buyers and sellers, effected securities transactions for customer accounts, and acted as a securities depository. The regulator has deemed at least 13 crypto assets available to Coinbase users as “crypto asset securities.” SEC Chairman Gary Gensler and Director of Enforcement Gurbir S. Grewal emphasised that Coinbase’s alleged actions deprived investors of crucial protections and that the exchange had ignored applicable federal securities laws, thereby putting investors at risk.
UK FCA cracks down on crypto ads
The United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has announced stricter regulations for crypto service advertisements effective from October 8. The new rules include a mandated “cooling-off period” for first-time investors and a ban on “refer a friend” bonuses. Crypto firms are required to ensure that their clients are sufficiently knowledgeable and experienced, and that their advertising content is transparent, fair, and free from misleading information. This move, which aligns with government legislation aimed at regulating crypto promotions, comes amid an ongoing international regulatory crackdown on the crypto industry. The FCA is also inviting feedback on further guidelines for crypto advertisers until August 10.
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