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Crypto Firms ‘Disregard’ US Amid Regulatory Crackdown

crypto regulation

Cryptocurrency companies apparently don’t feel at home in America these days.

Amid a regulatory crackdown, crypto executives say they are now looking outside the U.S. for growth, at least for now, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported Thursday (Sept. 21).

“In the short term, we can afford to disregard the U.S.,” Matthew Graham, founder and managing partner of Ryze Labs, told the WSJ. “But in the long term, it’s a loss for everyone.”

His company, Ripple, and Zodia Markets are among the firms mentioned in the report as focusing their efforts outside the U.S. The WSJ also notes that MakerDAO, a leaderless stablecoin protocol, recently barred U.S.-based users from its platform.

According to the WSJ, moves like these have sparked concern about how much money crypto companies can take in without the world’s largest economy following a clampdown by regulators such as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The SEC in June sued both Binance and Coinbase — the largest crypto companies in the world and the U.S. respectively — alleging a host of securities law violations.

As covered here a month later, the SEC has determined that “pretty much every crypto token outside of bitcoin, all 25,000-plus of them, can be defined as a security and should therefore be regulated by the agency.”

Instead of going token by token, that report added, “the SEC is going right for the jugular and targeting the major players that facilitate the exchange and trading of digital assets, as well as the sector’s on-and-off ramps to traditional financial ecosystems.”

Against this backdrop, PYMNTS wrote, “Hong Kong, the U.K., the European Union (EU), and Singapore are all increasingly being viewed as attractive jurisdictions by crypto players, given the hostile landscape in the U.S.”

For example, Ripple’s CEO said last week, while attending the Token2049 conference in Singapore, that his company plans to hire 80% of its workers from countries he contends do a better job than the U.S. at regulating cryptocurrency.

“It’s super frustrating that you see markets like we have here in Singapore…where the governments are partnering with the industry, and you’re seeing leadership providing clear rules, and you’re seeing growth,” Brad Garlinghouse told Bloomberg Television. “And frankly that’s why Ripple is hiring there.”