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Binance Pauses USDC Withdrawals and Sees $3 Billion In Outflows

Binance Pauses USDC Withdrawals and Sees 3 Billion In Outflows
Binance Pauses USDC Withdrawals and Sees 3 Billion In Outflows

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, said Tuesday it is pausing withdrawals of the stablecoin USDC while it completes a token swap involving the asset.

Withdrawals in other tokens tied to the value of the dollar–specifically tether and BUSD, a stablecoin developed by Binance and blockchain-focused firm Paxos–are unaffected.

Changpeng Zhao, Binance’s chief executive, added in a Twitter post: “On USDC, we have seen an increase in withdrawals. However, the channel to swap from PAX/BUSD to USDC requires going through a bank in New York in USD. The banks are not open for another few hours. We expect the situation will be restored when the banks open.”

According to blockchain analytics firm Nansen, Binance has experienced the highest daily amount of withdrawals since June. Net outflows hit $3 billion in the past 24 hours. Nansen analyst Andrew Thurman tweeted that Jump Trading, one of the largest crypto market makers, was among the biggest redeemers.

The collapse of rival exchange FTX last month has left investors jittery with fears of contagion across the industry. FTX’s former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, was arrested in the Bahamas late Monday after U.S. prosecutors filed criminal charges.

Concern about Binance have also grown in recent weeks. In an attempt to reassure customers about the safety of their holdings, the exchange published its first proof-of-reserves report, an audit seeking to ensure that a platform holds enough assets to cover all of its client balances.

However, it has left some industry insiders with more questions than answers. Former SEC regulator John Stark told Decrypt that Binance’s report failed to address internal financial controls and lacked an “assurance conclusion.”

Additionally, Reuters reported Monday that some U.S. prosecutors involved in Binance’s four-year investigation believe there’s enough evidence to file criminal charges against the firm’s individual executives, including Zhao.

Binance did not immediately respond to Forbes’ request for comment.

As of 10:46 a.m. New York time, all three major stablecoins, tether, USD coin (USDC) and BUSD, are trading a little under $1, according to Nomics.

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