U.S. Crypto Customers Get New Option as Bittrex Adds USD-BTC
Top American crypto exchanges Coinbase and Gemini have been flexing left and right lately, but Bittrex is determined to make its own headway in actualizing new U.S. users. A good place to start, then? Adding the USD-BTC trading pair, which is exactly what they’ve done. The move caused enough excitement to temporarily overload the exchange’s website on the morning of May 31st.
Bittrex: Your Dollars Are Good Here
There’s no question that fiat trading pairs are a huge enticement to crypto traders. To “buy the dips,” as it goes, you need cash on hand. More importantly, you need to have an exchange with your desired fiat trading pair.
And traders can get fickle or miffed easily. They like options, as all consumers do.
Seattle’s resident crypto exchange Bittrex has taken these publicly-evident truths and ran with them, having today launched for select customers the trading pair comprising the world’s most popular fiat currency and the world’s most popular cryptocurrency: USD-BTC.
— Sensei Splinter ⚡️ (@_SenseiSplinter) May 31, 2018
Of course, the move doesn’t hold a candle to the institutional and retail pivots Coinbase has been steering lately, but Bittrex’s new USD-BTC pair is a start. And any catch-up attempt with competitors is begun so: with a start.
Earlier in the year, Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara said during a podcast interview with Unikrn Radio that the exchange had been looking at launching USD deposits. Now, that “look” has turned into a “done.”
Late 2017 Sign-Up Shuttering Related?
In April 2018, Bittrex re-opened (and temporarily closed again) account registrations after having put such registrations on a moratorium in the final days of 2018.
The original closure is interesting, in light of the fact that Bloomberg’s reporting that Bittrex has locked down a banking deal with Signature Bank out of New York and that the bank had has dug through Bittrex’s inner-workings to make sure that Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know-Your-Customer (KYC) protocols were adequately in place.
Bittrex CEO Shihara noted:
“They [wanted] to make sure that we’ve got robust AML/KYC processes, that we’ve got the right controls on our finances. They do background checks and everything. They really look at our business soup to nuts.”
To that end, perhaps Bittrex shuttered registrations last year as they begun negotiating with Signature Bank and letting the firm cull through their files and operations. That, of course, is speculation for now. The shuttering at the time was officially billed as for improving the exchange’s infrastructure.
USD Also Added to USDT, TUSD
Dollar dollar bills y’all. And dollar tokens, too.
— N1njaWTF (@N1njaWTF) May 31, 2018
Interesting to see Bittrex push ahead with a USD-USDT pair with all the noise and controversy that’s followed Tether in recent months.
Site Sluggish as News Drops
As happens a lot in crypto, the new development caused a rush on Bittrex this morning, leading to the site performing temporarily sluggish for many.
Has anyone tried to log into #bittrex this am? I just logged in and there is nothing there. I mean like if I hit any button there is nothing. I can see coins and the exchange moving, wallet etc. I tried a few different browsers. Any idea why the site is blank inside?
— Jolly Mon (@bornblu73) May 31, 2018
A quick check at press time showed that the site was back up to full speed, at least from my end.
What’s your take? Do you think fiat trading pairs is a good way for exchanges to bring in new customers? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Images via Pacific Processing, Fintechist