It’s tough being a cryptocurrency exchange. All you want to do is provide a valuable liquidity service to an emerging industry, while navigating a fine line between regulatory compliance and crypto anarchy. But maybe you step a little too far into the shady side and find yourself in trouble.
That could be the situation an exchange called Bitfinex finds itself in. Bitfinex issues the digital token Tether, a tradable asset on most major exchanges that has remained operational in spite of constant criticism and a New York attorney general investigation. More recently, a study from the University of Texas raises new allegations that a single account used Tethers to drive more than half of Bitcoin’s 2017 price surge. There’s a lot at stake — the research study is cited as key evidence in a $1.4 trillion class action lawsuit against Bitfinex and Tether.