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Crypto Prices Show Signs of Stability After SEC Crackdown Concerns

This week marked a period of relative stability in the cryptocurrency market, as prices showed signs of steadying after a significant sell-off triggered by legal actions from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against Binance and Coinbase for violating securities regulations.

According to Coin Metrics, Cardano’s ADA coin remained unchanged on Monday, following a brief weekend tumble of approximately 17%. Conversely, Solana’s SOL recorded a 6% decline, while Polygon’s MATIC experienced a drop of more than 2%. During the weekend, both Polygon and Solana saw substantial declines of around 20% and 17%, respectively. Binance’s BNB remained relatively stable over the weekend but encountered a loss of more than 3% on Monday.

Over the past week, numerous alternative coins (altcoins) experienced significant drops, with some plunging by at least 15%. In the seven-day period ending on June 9, 2023, Cardano’s coin fell by 27%, Solana’s saw a 23% decrease, Polygon’s tumbled by 24%, and the BNB token dropped more than 18%.

Last week, the SEC filed lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase, alleging that both platforms had operated as exchanges, broke dealers or clearing agencies without proper registration and had also engaged in the sale of unregistered securities. The agency specifically identified Polygon, Solana and Cardano coins as potential securities. Consequently, the trading app Robinhood delisted these three coins on Friday.

In the lawsuit against Binance, the SEC charged the company and Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao with misrepresenting trade volumes, misusing customer cash and deceiving customers about its internal controls.

Meanwhile, the price of ether and Bitcoin remained comparatively constant, barely moving from the flat line. The support from the February high, according to Bitbank’s crypto market analyst Yuya Hasegawa, helped to keep Bitcoin’s slide in check when compared to other cryptocurrencies. Hasegawa cautioned, however, that Bitcoin would have a perilous week as more troubling information about the SEC’s legal proceedings could surface as the wider financial markets look forward to the U.S. FOMC and CPI meeting.

Following the filing of the lawsuits, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler said in an interview with CNBC that the country did not need additional digital currencies. He argued that U.S. securities regulations should benefit investors and emphasized that the cryptocurrency sector should conform to the same standards, requiring platforms and intermediaries to comply.

President Joe Biden appointed Gensler in 2021, and Gensler has spent a significant portion of the previous year taking action against cryptocurrency businesses and exchanges.

The signs of stability being seen in the crypto market are welcome news to industry players such as Riot Blockchain Inc. (NASDAQ: RIOT) that are seeking to deepen their penetration in the U.S. market and elsewhere.

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