Bad News Bears
Major crypto platforms are holding coins hostage as markets collapse
The amount wiped from crypto markets over the weekend.
Cryptocurrency markets are currently tanking to some of their lowest valuations in years, and there doesn’t appear to be any end in sight. What’s more, it’s getting so bad that some trading platforms have been forced to prevent their users from withdrawing assets, because the companies don’t even have enough liquidity to finance people jumping their sinking ships.
Celsius, an extremely popular crypto exchange and portfolio service, sent out an email and posted a blog notice to customers late last night explaining: “Due to extreme market conditions, today we are announcing that Celsius is pausing all withdrawals, Swap, and transfers between accounts. We are taking this action today to put Celsius in a better position to honor, over time, its withdrawal obligations.”
As of this writing, Bitcoin is down to barely $23K per coin, its lowest valuation since December 2020 and less than half its all-time high of $68K. Brace yourself, HODLers... it’s gonna get a lot worse before it (maybe) gets better.
Unfortunately unsurprising — As dramatic as the current crash appears to be, it’s not exactly surprising to anyone looking objectively at the market and cultural signs over the past few months. Despite the wondrous new ability to buy burritos with Bitcoin, rates have been on a steady and severe decline since the beginning of the year — cut literally in half, to be more specific.
More traditional financial markets haven’t looked much better. Despite crypto proselytizers’ most fervent declarations, none of these systems operate in a vacuum. Taken altogether, the ongoing crash has been written on the wall for a while now.
A serious situation for many — Unfortunately, many people are literally and figuratively all-in on crypto finances, converting life savings, retirement accounts, and even just the majority of their liquid assets into Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other various cryptocurrencies. This is financial life and death for some, and it’s sadly no shock to see them panicking.
Multiple users have posted suicide help hotlines on Celsius’s subreddit. Others, meanwhile, are contemplating ways to mobilize class-action lawsuits in hopes of eventually recovering at least some of their assets — a strategy that will almost certainly amount to nothing, given the kinds of terms and conditions signed to use sites like Celsius.