Coinbase Share Prices Fall 21 Percent as US SEC Probes Its Token Listings

The SEC is unsure if all the tokens listed on Coinbase aren't securities.

Coinbase Share Prices Fall 21 Percent as US SEC Probes Its Token Listings

Photo Credit: Unsplash/ PiggyBank

Coinbase is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission

Highlights
  • Tokens listed on Coinbase are being reviewed by the SEC
  • The share market hasn't responded well to the news
  • Coinbase' share prices have dipped due to the bear market too

Coinbase, the US-based cryptocurrency trading platform, saw its share prices plummet by as much as 21 percent after news that the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had decided to investigate the exchange to decide whether the platform allowed its clients to trade digital assets that should have been registered as securities. Scrutiny of Coinbase by the SEC has increased since the company expanded the number of tokens available to trade. The development take place after Coinbase in a letter to the SEC last week called on the agency to provide clearer rules on which assets it considers securities.

Coinbase had its IPO in 2021, and since then, the price of Coinbase's shares has gone down more than 84 percent. The current price of Coinbase's share is $52.93 (roughly Rs. 4,235), down from $67.07 (roughly Rs. 5,366) the previous day. The fall in Bitcoin and Ether's price over the past few months has already negatively impacted Coinbase, and now a prolonged investigation could totally ruin its share price.

A spokesperson for the platform recently said that Coinbase does not list securities on its platform while the chief legal officer of Coinbase, Paul Grewal said, "We are confident that our rigorous diligence process — a process the SEC has already reviewed — keeps securities off our platform, and we look forward to engaging with the SEC on the matter."

According to a Bloomberg report on Monday, three people familiar with the matter said that the SEC's enforcement unit is looking into whether Coinbase wrongfully listed tokens that should have been registered as securities.

The sources also said that the SEC's inquiries began before it named nine crypto tokens as securities in an insider trading lawsuit against a former Coinbase employee and two of his associates.

According to Bloomberg's sources, who asked not to be named, the SEC began its inquiry after Coinbase began to rapidly expand the number of tokens listed on its platform.

The debate over which cryptocurrencies should be regulated as securities has been ongoing for years. As part of the insider trading case revealed last week, the SEC took a bold step by calling nine cryptocurrencies securities, seven of which are currently listed by Coinbase.


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Further reading: Cryptocurrency, Coinbase, SEC
Shomik Sen Bhattacharjee
Shomik is a senior sub-editor at Gadgets 360. As someone who's screened the consumer tech space for the past four years, he's now shifted focus to the crypto-verse. When not converting currency values in his head, you may find him in an intense five-a-side football match or grinding out the newest Destiny 2 weekly challenge on his Xbox. You can reach him for tips or queries at ShomikB@ndtv.com. More
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