Coinbase reaches $US100m settlement with New York

“Coinbase has taken substantial measures to address these historical shortcomings and remains committed to being a leader and role model in the crypto space, including partnering with regulators when it comes to compliance,” said Paul Grewal, Coinbase’s chief legal officer.

The crypto industry has grappled with increasing regulatory pressure over enforcing know-your-customer rules and anti-money laundering programs. Binance, the biggest global crypto exchange, and FTX, its now-bankrupt rival, both faced US investigations over money laundering, Bloomberg reported earlier.

New York requires companies engaging in crypto services to obtain its BitLicense to operate in the state, which allows its regulators to conduct examinations and oversight. In August, the Department of Financial Services fined Robinhood Markets’ crypto arm $US30 million for violations of anti-money laundering and other rules.

Coinbase has disclosed the investigation by New York relating to its compliance program in its 2021 annual filing. “The size of the settlement is not significant in context of” the more than $5 billion cash on its balance sheet, but will “likely pressure the company to continue to increase investments and ongoing expenses” related to compliance, KBW analysts including Kyle Voigt wrote in a note on Wednesday.

Shares of Coinbase jumped 11 per cent to $US37.41 in morning trade in New York. The stock tumbled 86 per cent last year. Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market value, dropped 64 per cent in 2022.

– With assistance from Matt Turner.

©2023 Bloomberg L.P.


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