Coinbase introduces spot crypto trading for international institutions

Institutions overseas can trade BTC-USDC and ETH-USDC pairs starting Thursday

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Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong | TechCrunch/"775208327GB00108_TechCrunch" (CC license)

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Coinbase is introducing spot crypto trading on its international exchange.

The launch, which starts Thursday, allows institutional international investors to trade both bitcoin and ether against the USDC stablecoin. The exchange, which started in May, previously offered derivatives.

“In the coming months, we plan to expand the product to include retail users, additional assets and features that enable new trading strategies and enhance capital efficiency,” Coinbase said in a press release.

The move is also meant to relieve some hesitation from those who are worried about engaging with US exchanges due to the uncertain regulatory environment.

Read more: Coinbase makes international moves as US regulators stall

Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong previously emphasized that the exchange will continue to eye its international options due to the regulatory uncertainty. He’s praised both the European Union and the United Kingdom for a more “thoughtful” and “comprehensive” crypto approach.

Coinbase International Exchange offers a trusted and compliant non-US spot market for those participants,” the post said.

Back in October, Coinbase expanded its perpetual futures service to retail traders outside of the US. The service was offered to institutional clients when the exchange began in May.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission sued Coinbase back in June, alleging that it operated as an unregistered exchange while offering and selling unregistered securities. 

Coinbase and its chief legal officer Paul Grewal maintained its innocence, and took the SEC to court to demand clarity on its regulatory stance. The regulator, however, pushed back and said that the company could not make such demands.

The SEC also targeted Binance, alleging similar violations though it also accused the crypto exchange of commingling customer funds. The US Department of Justice, in November, announced a $4.3 billion settlement with Binance which included the ousting of its former CEO Changpeng Zhao. Binance also pleaded guilty to violating the Bank Secrecy Act.


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