All cameras were trained on Binance as Ukraine requested crypto exchanges to issue a blanket ban on Russian users. As more and more politicians, crypto players, and war survivors voiced their own views on the issue, the pressure is mounting on exchanges to please everyone – while staying true to the values of cryptocurrency.
BNB says BRB
How has the tension of it all affected BNB? Well, at press time, BNB was trading at $407.49, having fallen by 1.57% in the last 24 hours while rising by 22.19% in the past seven days. However, a deeper look into the metrics is well worth the effort.
Weighted sentiment for BNB was negative on 3 March, despite BNB’s climb in price. Negativity seems to have been the mood of the season throughout most of January and February this year, with only brief forays into the positive territory. This suggests investors are not too confident that they have seen the last of price falls.
Meanwhile, we can note a steady decline in the number of active addresses since the highs of October 2021. From over 5,000 active addresses per day prior to the December crash, the number of active addresses close to press time was 686. This was the case despite the recent rally. All in all, it appears that investor interest is considerably dampened.
Binance in a tug of war
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao found himself under the regulatory microscope as the debate regarding blanket bans rose by another notch. In a Bloomberg interview, Zhao assured journalists that Binance was complying with orders to cut access to sanctioned individuals. However, he stressed that implementing sweeping restrictions would be “unethical” for Binance.
“It’s not our decision to make to freeze user accounts. Facebook hasn’t banned Russian users. Google has not blocked off Russia. The U.S. hasn’t done that. Also, on an ethical point of view, many Russians don’t support the war, so we should separate the politicians from the normal people.”
I am [not] the warrant and the sanction
For his part, Kraken co-founder Jesse Powell responded to a request from Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister for crypto exchanges to “sabotage ordinary users” by blocking all Russian users. Powell insisted that Kraken could take no such action unless legally required to do so.
1/6 I understand the rationale for this request but, despite my deep respect for the Ukrainian people, @krakenfx cannot freeze the accounts of our Russian clients without a legal requirement to do so.
— Jesse Powell (@jespow) February 28, 2022
However, under an article about larger exchanges’ compliance measures, Powell commented,
“…I think we all know that certain newer exchanges have made their primary value prop/growth strategy the lack of AML/KYC/BSA compliance.”