3 - 5 minute read
Bittrex, one of the earliest cryptocurrency exchanges, has announced that it will be voluntarily halting its operations in the United States by the end of April. The company shared this news with its users via email on March 31. Bittrex has stated that it will completely cease its US operations at 12 p.m. PDT on April 30, with April 14 being the deadline for all US trading.
In its email to users, Bittrex has assured that US customers will have access to their accounts until the last full day of withdrawals on April 29. The company has also set specific withdrawal deadlines depending on the type of activity involved in the withdrawal process. US-based users must set up a bank account for fiat wire withdrawals by April 7, must request fiat wire withdrawals by April 24, and must request fiat ACH withdrawals by April 27. However, users can withdraw cryptocurrency without any restrictions.
Due to continued regulatory uncertainty, we have made the difficult decision to wind down our U.S. operations, effective April 30, 2023. All funds are safe and can be fully withdrawn immediately.— Bittrex (@BittrexExchange) March 31, 2023
This does not affect customers of @BittrexGlobal https://t.co/MY4u7XLk9z
Bittrex has added that its US referral and staking products will be terminated immediately, and although earnings will halt, past rewards will be paid out by April 5. The exchange has faced regulatory challenges in the past, including being fined by OFAC and FinCEN in October 2022 and being barred from New York in 2019. Bittrex co-founder and CEO Richie Lai has attributed the halt in services to “regulatory uncertainty and a lack of interest from US regulators regarding sensible policies.”
Despite its departure from the US, Bittrex has confirmed that its global customers will not be affected by this change. The company is committed to growing Bittrex Global, which is based in Bermuda and Liechtenstein, and serves customers outside of the United States.
Apart from its regulatory challenges, Bittrex appears to be in a somewhat weak financial situation. In February, the company laid off about one-fifth of its staff, and it reported only a modest trading volume of $14 million over the past 24 hours.
Bittrex’s announcement has raised concerns among traders who are wondering what this means for the asset in question. While it is still unclear how this will affect the wider market, it is important to keep in mind that trading carries a high risk, and we are not financial advisors.
Bittrex’s decision to halt its US operations is a reminder that the cryptocurrency market is still largely unregulated. As the market continues to evolve, it is important for exchanges and regulators alike to work together to create a safe and secure environment for traders.