FCA Flags Crypto Firms Huobi and KuCoin for UK Investors

BySamson Ononeme

Oct 9, 2023 , ,
Argento Wealth Ltd and Daniel Willis agreed to pay Β£1.6 million to the FCA to facilitate the distribution of funds to investors impacted by the alleged unlawful schemes.

Key Insights

  • The UK’s financial regulator, the FCA, added 143 crypto exchanges to its warning list, cautioning customers to avoid them.
  • Firms engaged in crypto activities in the UK must be registered with the FCA, with potential criminal charges for non-compliance.
  • PayPal suspended crypto transactions for UK customers, and Bybit ceased services in the UK due to regulatory concerns.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the United Kingdom’s financial markets regulator, made a significant move on Sunday, October 8th, by expanding its warning list to include numerous crypto exchanges.

These exchanges, the FCA cautioned, were not authorized firms and customers were strongly advised to steer clear of them.

UK’s FCA Issues Warnings to 143 Crypto Firms

A total of 143 new entities found their way onto this cautionary list, among them some prominent players in the crypto space, including HTX, owned by Huobi, and KuCoin. The warnings, however, provided little detail, merely stating, β€œYou should avoid dealing with this firm.”

Read also! FCA Cracks Down on 26 Illegal Crypto ATMs Across the UK

In the United Kingdom, firms engaging in “crypto asset activities” are mandated to be either registered with the FCA or have been granted temporary status to operate. This stringent requirement, aimed at ensuring the safety of consumers, has led the FCA to issue a stern warning. Jayson Probin, the crypto financial promotions lead at the FCA, emphasized that non-compliance could result in criminal charges. Probin stated,

We will take robust action against persons illegally promoting to U.K. consumers. This may include, but it is not limited to, placing firms on our warning list requesting take downs of websites, social media accounts, apps, and all other promotions that are in breach, and enforcement action.

This recent development follows the FCA’s revelation in August that, since 2020, it had received 291 applications for registration but approved only 38, roughly 13% of the total. As of now, the FCA’s list of registered crypto asset providers encompasses 42 entities, including well-known names like Bitstamp, Revolut, and Gemini.

The regulatory landscape has prompted significant actions from crypto industry players. PayPal, for instance, temporarily halted crypto transactions for its U.K. customers as it grappled with aligning itself with the FCA’s requirements.

Meanwhile, Bybit, a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Dubai, ceased all its services in the U.K. in late September, citing “regulatory changes” as the primary reason behind its move.

Samson Ononeme

Meet Samson Ononeme, a dynamic writer, editor, and CEO of marketsxplora.com. With a passion for words and a sharp business acumen, Samson captivates readers with captivating storytelling and delivers insightful market analysis. He is a trailblazer in the finance industry, empowering individuals with knowledge and shaping the narrative of money. Get ready to be inspired by his literary prowess and entrepreneurial leadership.

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