Misleading reports that the Metropolitan Bank Corporation, a bank of choice for many crypto firms regarding wire transfers and deposits, declared that the firm had indefinitely suspended all crypto-related international wire transactions with immediate effect.
End of the Road?
According to Fortune a customer of the Bank disclosed that the Metropolitan bank had informed his investment firm of its intention to cease all crypto-related international wire transfers immediately. According to the source, the reason for this sudden rejection is that the Metropolitan claims it’s finding it a herculean task verifying the compliance of international wire transfers for cryptocurrency accounts.
An undisclosed source even alleged that this indefinite suspension of crypto wire transactions is in response to a recent incident of fraud associated with one of Metropolitan bank’s international clients.
These claims were eventually refuted by the bank on January 16, 2018, via a public statement. While the firm didn’t indicate that it would be accepting digital currencies, it reminded readers that it had never allowed these forms of payments in the past:
“As a matter of policy, the Bank does not accept cryptocurrency-related wire transfers from non-U.S. entities. This is a long-standing policy of the Bank and remains in effect today. Last week, the Bank sent out a reminder to customers of its policy against accepting cryptocurrency-related wire transfers from non-U.S. entities. This reminder to customers is not a new policy for the Bank and was not due to, nor did the Bank experience, any “incident of international fraud.”
Further Banking Developments
This latest development might be a significant setback for Metropolitan bank which is also fondly referred to as “The Bitcoin Bank” by its clients because of its support for digital assets. It could even result in a slump in the blue-chip company’s rapidly growing stock while its management team is still in the post-IPO lockup period following its Initial Public Offer held in November.
In a similar development, US-based Capital One bank has also announced to halt the processing of bitcoin-related transactions.
The bank aggressively suspended cryptocurrency transactions without notifying its clients. A customer of the bank only found the suspension when they attempted to a cryptocurrency related transaction. Their Reddit post reads thus:
“Went to pay my babysitter in crypto after I got off work tonight. Log into Coinbase, select my credit card, purchase 90 dollars in crypto, success…wait for funds to appear and they don’t. An email pops off, and I check it. I received an email from Coinbase that my bank had blocked the transaction and I need to call them. Call CapitalOne, and they inform me all exchanges have been blocked by CapitalOne.”
Capital one bank’s recent suspension on cryptocurrency transactions, as well as Metropolitan Bank’s security confirmation, makes clear that authorities are doing everything within their powers to tame the wildfire growth of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is thus becoming another figure to watch in the coming months as he attempts to regulate and protect American consumers in the sector.