As Bitcoin cools from its recent all-time high, HSBC has become the latest banking giant to restrict what its customers can invest in by preventing them from transferring any profits from crypto exchanges to their bank accounts.ban
According to a recent report in The Sunday Times, HSBC has blocked transactions to or from crypto exchanges as it takes a heavy-handed approach to Bitcoin and its brethren. A number of U.K. banks have also made moves to prevent their customers from buying crypto assets using their debit or credit cards.
The U.K. is regarded as one of the more anti-crypto nations, alongside the U.S., as its financial institutions and regulators have increasingly strived to stifle the industry.
More Banking Duplicity
CNBC host and Onchain Capital founder, Ran Neuner, pointed out that customers will ultimately make the choice to bank elsewhere when faced with draconian restrictions on what they can and can’t do with their own money;
Many banks will put themselves out of business like this. pic.twitter.com/7JvRT777qT
— Ran Neuner (@cryptomanran) January 9, 2021
Jason Yanowitz from Block Works Group added;
“Legacy financial institutions will do everything in their power to stop this movement. They’re literally denying their customers access to the greatest performing asset of the past decade.”
Banks have traditionally been vehemently against decentralized digital currencies as the concept is a direct threat to their profit margins. Banks make money from other people’s money and were the primary catalyst for Satoshi Nakamoto to spawn Bitcoin just over a decade ago.
It is unclear what HSBC is trying to stifle or prevent as their own involvements in global money-laundering rackets have been well documented.
In September 2020, HSBC shared plummeted after leaked documents from the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), involving around $2 trillion in transactions revealed how the bank, among others, has allowed criminals to move dirty money around the world.
HSBC Fined For Money Laundering
The documents revealed that HSBC allowed fraudsters to transfer millions of dollars around the world even after it had learned of the Chinese Ponzi scam, and now it is worried about its customers trading Bitcoin.
According to the BBC, the files showed the investment scam started soon after the bank was fined a record $1.9 billion in the U.S. over money laundering.
Other major banks including JP Morgan Chase, Barclays Bank, Deutsche Bank, and Standard Chartered were also implicated in dodgy dealings according to the leaked documents.
Blocking transactions related to crypto trading is just the latest in banking hypocrisy that customers have to stomach. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives available.