Bitcoin and Ether Take SEC Crackdown On The Chin

Coinbase stock tanked immediately when word broke of the SEC’s latest threats, but not bitcoin and ether

article-image Van Scyoc, modified by Blockworks


Bitcoin and ether mostly held their ground as Coinbase disclosed it had received an SEC Wells notice alleging potential securities violations.

The top-two cryptocurrencies even clawed back earlier losses, climbing 4% and 4.7%, respectively, on Thursday. Bitcoin is now at its highest point since last June.

Coinbase stock, on the other hand, immediately sank 20% on news of the Wells before recovering slightly. It’s however still up around 13% over the past month and nearly double year to date.

The securities watchdog is showing renewed focus in pursuing action with little mediation. Last month saw a settlement with San Francisco-headquartered exchange Kraken over its staking-as-a-service products.

Bitcoin and ether are still up more than 20% over the past month, with recent rallies coinciding with failures at US banks Signature and Silicon Valley Bank. Although, markets corrected Friday morning, by 2%.

A “reprehensible amount of resources” have been spent in the US attempting to engage with the SEC, Sheila Warren, CEO of the Crypto Council for Innovation told Blockworks in an emailed statement.

Coinbase’s chief counsel said the firm had directed millions to legal support for SEC proposals and repeatedly requested SEC feedback. “We got none,” Paul Grewal said in a blog post.

On the other hand, more direct SEC action against Tron founder Justin Sun on Wednesday tanked TRX up to 13%. Other tokens tied to the crypto entrepreneur dropped, too, such as bittorrent and huobi token.

For what it’s worth, China’s ban on bitcoin in May 2021 triggered a far steeper sell-off — with BTC falling more than 30% on the month. Bitcoin bounced hard, topping out at $69,000 by November.

“We are seeing big demand coming from institutions,” Guillaume Chatain, head of institutional sales at Coinbase said during a fireside chat at Paris Blockchain Week on Thursday. “Hedge funds want to take advantage of the volatility.”

Updated Mar. 24, 2023 at 7:59 am ET: Added price context.

Don’t miss the next big story – join our free daily newsletter.


Upcoming Events

Hilton Metropole | 225 Edgware Rd, London

MON - WED, MARCH 18 - 20, 2024

Crypto’s premier institutional conference returns to London in March 2024. The DAS: London Experience:  Attend expert-led panel discussions and fireside chats  Hear the latest developments regarding the crypto and digital asset regulatory environment directly from policymakers and experts   Grow your network […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Frax report cover.jpg


Frax saw continued development in its frxETH liquid staking derivative and Fraxlend money market throughout 2023. Frax V3 introduces an RWA strategy to drive utility to the protocol's cornerstone product, the FRAX stablecoin.


Following layoffs at BAYC parent Yuga Labs and OpenSea, Tiger Global marked down its stakes


Recent SEC filings suggest the regulator could be lining up the approval of multiple proposals in early January, segment observers argue


A dinner back in September gave big traders a heads up about the DOJ settlement, Bloomberg reported


On-chain debt capital markets platform deploys on Coinbase-incubated layer-2 after structured investment products push


Past performance is not indicative of future results, sure, but no need to rain on the bitcoin price parade just yet


Circle’s letter follows one from the Campaign for Accountability alleging ties to Justin Sun and TRON