It appears that BitMEX’s ongoing legal struggles are giving its competition the chance to overtake it in the crypto derivatives market. ByBit has taken the #3 spot from BitMEX, and Bitget has been able to pull ahead of BitMEX in 24-hour volume.
ByBit now receives 9.50% of the total crypto derivatives market trade, according to CoinMarketCap, with BitMEX falling to under 7.5%. Bitget is logging around 8.5% of crypto derivatives trade, putting both exchanges solidly in front of BitMEX.
While ByBit is still a way from challenging Binance or Huobi Global, its advance to overtake BitMEX is making waves in the crypto derivatives sphere. It is far too early to speculate on the future of BitMEX, however, its legal issues do seem to be taking a toll.
BitMEX is Bogged Down at the Moment
BitMEX is registered in the Seychelles, but US regulators have been pursuing the exchange for years. The legal investigation into the exchange began in 2019, but official actions began in October of 2020.
Some of the charges against the exchange included allowing unregistered trading, which can be very serious for a company.
In response to this BitMEX announced that all new users would have to pass a KYC/AML screening that was in-line with what the US regulators demanded, and also that all existing clients would need to verify their identity.
BitMEX claimed that this move to ID all of its active users made it one of the largest crypto derivatives exchanges in the world with fully compliant registered users.
A Move to Dominate the Marketplace
In the wake of official charges being filed by the US government, BitMEX has been working to change its image, and how it does business.
Over the last week its parent company, 100x Group, opted to join Global Digital Finance (GDF), which is a large industry group that is working to drive the adoption and use of digital assets.
100x Group CEO Alexander Höptner told media that,
“Greater public-private collaboration is the only way to realise the wide-scale adoption of digital assets and we will be championing an advance in industry-wide operational standards and governance.”
It would appear that while BitMEX’s and 100x Group’s actions have succeeded in keeping the US government at bay, for now, it is driving business to other exchanges. As many investors in the digital asset space prefer privacy to KYC checks, this trend could continue.
Whether or not other crypto derivatives exchanges will be pressed into similar actions by the US government has yet to be seen.
Given the actions that US regulators have taken in the last six months against companies like Ripple and BitMEX, it is totally possible more are on the way – even if they operate well outside of US borders.