Business

Erik Gibbs

Bittrex cuts off US traders from trading in 32 currencies

The Bittrex cryptocurrency exchange was recently denied from receiving a BitLicense to operate in New York State. It decided to expand its US operations into Rhode Island as a result, but those expansion plans have now come to a grinding halt. Perhaps New York knew more than it had been willing to divulge. Bittrex will soon be blocking US residents from trading in 32 different digital currencies.

The exchange announced the action in a blog post last Friday. It explains that US traders will no longer be able to access a number of coins, stating, “Effective on June 21, certain markets will no longer be accessible to U.S. Customers.” However, Bittrex didn’t offer a reason in the blog post for the changes.

The top coins aren’t affected by the decision – only coins such as HYDRO, QTUM, ADT and others. Bittrex customers in the US can expect to receive an email detailing guidance on how to proceed, but says that those customers will not be able to buy or sell any of the coins after July 21. It adds, “U.S. Customers may withdraw or continue to hold in their Bittrex wallet affected Tokens/Coins for as long as Bittrex International supports a market in those Tokens/Coins.”

The platform could whittle down the list even more, according to the blog post. It states, “Certain markets will soon become unavailable to U.S. Customers. Those markets will generally continue to be available to Bittrex International customers. Currently, Bittrex International features 200+ tokens and coins for non-US Customers and we anticipate that we will continue to add innovative blockchain projects to Bittrex International in the future.”

While the exact nature of the changes isn’t specified, it appears that it may have something to do with regulations and the position of the US vis-à-vis cryptocurrency. Bittrex explains, “Bittrex is proud to be a U.S. Digital Asset Trading Platform. U.S. customers will have access to a more limited number of markets as compared to what Non-U.S. Customers have on the Bittrex International platform. Like other industry participants, we will continue to advocate for laws and regulations that foster innovation.”

Bittrex isn’t the only exchange to find difficulty operating in the US market. Binance has introduced a decentralized exchange that has been forced to block access to US traders, as well as traders in 28 other countries.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as SegWitCoin BTC coins. Altcoins, which value privacy, anonymity, and distance from government intervention, are referenced as dark coins.

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