Mar 24, 2023
Bitcoin Lingers Near $28,000; Binance is Hit With Trading Halt
(Bloomberg) -- Bitcoin traded around the $28,000 mark with concern about financial stability fueling bets that major central banks will need to stop increasing rates amid rising recession anxiety.
The largest cryptocurrency briefly spiked 3% lower earlier, when Binance halted all spot trading on its platform because of a technical glitch. The firm said trading on the exchange would resume around 10 a.m. New York time, after the more than 2-hour halt.
Bitcoin was down less than 1% to $28,130. Other tokens were lower, with Ether down 2.4% and altcoins Cardano and Solana both down around 2.5%.
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will convene the heads of top US financial regulators Friday for a meeting of the Financial Stability Oversight Council. Deutsche Bank become the latest focus of the turmoil as concern about the industry sent its shares slumping. Lenders also came under pressure as Bloomberg News reported that Credit Suisse and UBS are among the firms under scrutiny in a US Justice Department probe into whether bankers helped Russian oligarchs evade sanctions.
Binance is the world’s largest crypto exchange. It processed roughly $14.9 billion in spot trading volume in the last 24 hours, according to data tracker CoinGecko. Its derivatives platform, which appeared to be unaffected, is much larger at $64.7 billion in 24-hour volume.
Changpeng Zhao, Binance’s chief executive, said earlier that an initial analysis of the issue indicated its matching engine “encountered a bug on a trailing stop order.” Deposits and withdrawals were paused as standard operating procedure, he said.
Bitcoin had previously racked up a stellar run over the last week, climbing to almost $29,000 on Wednesday despite a series of enforcement actions announced by the US Securities and Exchange Commission against crypto companies. The token is up almost 70% so far this year, unusually outpacing gains by smaller tokens.
“Crypto markets are at their most volatile when liquidity is low,” said Conor Ryder, research analyst at blockchain data firm Kaiko, in a note Thursday. The market is currently at its lowest level of liquidity in Bitcoin markets in 10 months, Ryder said, following the collapse of several major banking routes into crypto this year.
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