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First Mover Americas: SEC-Targeted Tokens Tumble

This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk’s daily newsletter putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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Major cryptocurrencies targeted as unregistered securities in U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase continued their sharp declines. BNB, the Binance Smart Chain’s native token, dropped 5% in the last 24 hours to a five month low of $252, according to CoinDesk data. Algorand’s ALGO lost 8% over the same period, and Solana’s SOL slid 5.2%. Bitcoin has remained somewhat of a safe haven, but only on a relative basis. The cryptocurrency is down modestly over the past 24 hours, but still remains near a three-month low at $26,400.

Crypto exchange Coinbase (COIN) will continue operating its crypto staking service despite facing lawsuits from state and federal regulators over the program and several of its other offerings. “We're not going to wind down our staking service,” said CEO Brian Armstrong Wednesday at the Bloomberg Invest Conference. “As these court cases play out, it's really business as usual,” he added. Armstrong noted that the exchange’s staking service accounts for about 3% of Coinbase’s overall net revenue. His comments came after the SEC on Tuesday sued Coinbase for a swath of violations, including allegations the company sold unregistered securities. A ten-state coalition led by the Alabama Securities Commission also took aim at the exchange, slapping Coinbase with allegations that the company’s staking program had violated various state securities laws.

As a private citizen in 2019, current SEC Chair Gary Gensler offered to serve as an advisor to Binance, lawyers for the exchange told SEC officials on June 4, according to a court filing yesterday. With Binance facing a suit from the SEC, the exchange’s attorneys argued that Gensler should recuse himself from the case because of this history. In March 2019, according to the Binance attorneys, Binance CEO Changpeng "CZ" Zhao and Gensler had an in-person lunch meeting in Japan where they discussed the BNB token and Binance opening an exchange in the U.S. Gensler at the time “acknowledged the regulatory uncertainty" around the then quickly-growing cryptocurrency industry, they said. The two remained in touch after the meeting, and “Zhao understood that the now-Chairman was comfortable serving as an informal advisor," something that Gensler himself offered, according to the filing.

Chart of The Day

  • The chart shows bitcoin's price slipped to former resistance-turned-support at $25,300 early this week.

  • The move could be called a throwback – a counter-trend move that takes prices down to the breakout price.

  • Prices typically rise after the completion of a throwback, according to technical analysis theory.

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