The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, has been banned by the UK’s financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
“Binance Markets Limited is not permitted to undertake any regulated activity in the UK. This firm is part of a wider Group (Binance Group),” the regulator announced in a press release. “Due to the imposition of requirements by the FCA, Binance Markets Limited is not currently permitted to undertake any regulated activities without the prior written consent of the FCA.”
“No other entity in the Binance Group holds any form of UK authorization, registration or license to conduct regulated activity in the UK,” the release added. “The Binance Group appear to be offering UK customers a range of products and services via a website, Binance.com.”
“Binance’s existing crypto exchange is not UK-based so, despite the FCA ruling, there will be no impact on UK residents who use the website to purchase and sell cryptocurrencies,” the BBC explained, adding that the website is an “online centralized exchange that offers users a range of financial products and services, including purchasing and trading a wide range of digital currencies, as well as digital wallets, futures, securities, savings accounts, and even lending.”
“Binance Markets Limited withdrew their 5MLD application on 17 May 2021 following intensive engagement from the FCA,” a spokesperson for the FCA told CNBC. “The action taken today on Binance Markets Limited has been in train for some time.”
According to Binance, this FCA notice would have no “direct impact” on services provided by the website, Binance.com.
“The FCA U.K. notice has no direct impact on the services provided on Binance.com … Our relationship with our users has not changed,” a Binance spokesperson told CNBC. “We take a collaborative approach in working with regulators and we take our compliance obligations very seriously.”
The spokesperson added, “We are actively keeping abreast of changing policies, rules, and laws in this new space.”
This move in the United Kingdom comes as part of a broader effort by international legislators to push back against cryptocurrency.
In mid-May, the cryptocurrency market crashed, with Bitcoin and Ethereum posting “their largest one-day drop since March last year,” according to Reuters, “with losses in the market capitalization for the entire cryptocurrency sector approaching $1 trillion.” This decline was triggered “after China banned financial and payment institutions from providing cryptocurrency services,” according to Yahoo! Finance. The BBC reported that the communist regime also “warned investors against speculative crypto trading.”
In June, Senator Elizabeth Warren “demanded that her fellow federal lawmakers confront the growing use of cryptocurrency,” blaming Bitcoin for worsening the “climate change” crisis.
“Cryptocurrency has created opportunities to scam investors, assist criminals, and worsen the climate crisis,” Warren said. “The threats posed by crypto show that Congress and federal regulators can’t continue to hide out, hoping that crypto will go away. It won’t. It’s time to confront these issues head-on.”
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